Weekend Confirmed 96 - David Jaffe, Twisted Metal

By Garnett Lee, Jan 20, 2012 2:00pm PST

Game designer David Jaffe and Game Trailers managing editor Michael McWhertor join Xav and Garnett for this week's show. Along with getting into Twisted Metal and car combat games the crew tackles a wide range of topics including a look at Shacknews's Game of Year winners, the different ways gamers see the balance in games between narrative and mechanics, more hands-on experiences with the Vita, and more. Buckle up; it's one helluva ride to the Finishing Moves.

Weekend Confirmed Ep. 96: 01/20/2012

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If you're viewing this in the GameFly application, you can play Weekend Confirmed Episode 96 directly.

Weekend Confirmed comes in four segments to make it easy to listen to in segments or all at once. Here's the timing for this week's episode:

    Show Breakdown:

    Round 1 00:00:00 to 00:28:16

    Whatcha Been Playing Part 1 00:28:42 to 00:58:04

    Whatcha Been Playing Part 2 00:59:05 to 01:27:51

    Listener Feedback/Front Page News 01:29:29 to 02:01:28

Check out our sponsor, audio bookseller audible.com. Hit http://audiblepodcast.com/weekendconfirmed for a free audiobook--like the first book from the Game of Thrones series.

Thanks to our special guests, game designer David Jaffe (@davidscottjaffe) and Michael McWhertor (@mikemcwhertor).

For the latest on the game, watch the official Twisted Metal site.

Original music in the show by Del Rio. Get his latest Album, The Wait is Over on iTunes. Check out more, including the Super Mega Worm mix and other mash-ups on his ReverbNation page or Facebook page, and follow him on twitter delriomusic.

Jeff Cannata can also be seen on The Totally Rad Show. They've gone daily so there's a new segment to watch every day of the week!

Follow the Weekend Confirmed hosts on Twitter, too! Garnett Lee @GarnettLee, Jeff Cannata @jeffcannata, and Xav de Matos @xav.

Remember to join the Official Facebook Weekend Confirmed Page and add us to your Facebook routine. We'll be keeping you up with the latest on the show there as well.

Click here to comment...


  • So skirting the fodder I've got another little irk to speak ill of...
    The new CoD maps dropped for "Elite" subscribers, all well and good, we knew this was happening. Being sucked in by it all I went to sign up, having seen the US$49.95/yr charge in all the screenshots and media. I booted up CoD, jumped into "Elite" went to purchase and.... that'll be $66.95 thank you very much.

    So it would seem the Aussie's are screwed once again... anyone that cares can jump over and see the current exchange rate has the AUD worth *more* than the USD! I'd be fine if it was say AUD$5 more but $20 is just ridiculous. Get your heads out of your butts and stop using Australia to fatten your profit margins.

  • I loved how Jaffe talked about the dual shock controller feature for the Vita. I think his positions was, although it may be cool to have a list of features like, being able to use a dual shock controller and hooking Vita up to a TV, it's not something that he really wants to do.

    Some gamers get real stoked when they hear a list of features (e.g. backward compatibility, able to use dual shock controller, 15 million USB ports, etc.). I get excited when I hear features that I REALLY plan to use (e.g. um..being able to play games with a dual stick configuration!).

    I guess that's what it comes down to. What's important to you. Therefore, if Vita is to be successful, the challenge is for Sony to focus on the features that are most important to the largest population of their target audience. Somehow, I don't think it's a feature like being able to use a dual shock controller. It's one of those features that sounds cool when you say it...but Just like Jaffe, who really wants to do that?

  • Alright, so I know that the whole open world debate has been going on for a while in the show, but I didn't really understand Garnett's point of view until now. I play games like Skyrim and other open world games and love the ability to choose what I get to do and whether or not I follow to main quests or just side missions, but I recently played through Batman: Arkham City for the first time(my Xbox was out of commission for a while) and found that the open world and abundant side missions only distracted me from the fantastic story line and made it more difficult to focus on what I needed to be doing. I felt that Arkham Asylum's nice fusion of a linear story line mixed with a world that has plenty of secrets, but nothing that distracted you for too long, was a more effective way of telling Rocksteady's fantastic story. Don't get me wrong, I think the idea of an open world Batman game was great and Rocksteady pulled it off much better than anyone could have imagined, but their incredible story was muddled by just too much distraction.
    I feel that Skyrim can get away with this because their main story line, while good, is not as strong as the draw of its side missions, so the decision to play one part or the other is not as hard as when you have a fantastic story like in Batman when you want to see it continue to unfold.

  • It's so easy to look at ALL games in the moment to moment and realize how boring the hamster wheel is. Garnett, I think you were being pretty reductive in your review of SWTOR, calling it essentially a game of watching timers. It reminded me of comments Jeff made reducing COD to a big game of tag
    I think Dave expressed a more cohesive comment on this when he said he thought COD really relied pulling players into the metagame.

    But I really want to bring into the discussion just HOW MANY games rely on a similar metagame mechanic. Besides obvious RPGs(WOW, Skyrim, League of Legends), consider open world games like GTA, Arkham City, and Minecraft, that have slowly implemented more stats and self-improvement. Then there's shooters like COD, Battlefield, and Homefront, where I think we have come to expect long-term goals outside off individual matches. I think some casual games like MafiaWars, Famville, and the Sims represent the most extreme reliance on a stat improvement, but also consider how much hugely popular sports game like Madden, NBA2k12 and how damn boring they would be(much like their real life counterpart) when you don't understand the context of the matchups and stats. Finally just consider the massive metagames of achievement/trophy systems on Xbox, PS3, and Steam.

    How many of the most popular games is that? While I love many of these games, isn't it a little scary just how much this trend has grown? It was not that long ago when the idea of an MMO like leveling system in a deathmatch shooter had people in an uproar. Now it's the standard.

    Here's my concern: Isn't there a danger of the trend going from devs using these systems to entertain players, to relying on a crutch to keep people playing a game that they otherwise would not find entertaining or dynamic enough. Do we want a hamster wheel to help turn an 8 hr experience into a 50 hr gaming epic and increase overall value? Or are we being tricked and all these games today are boring moment to moment (fetch quests, grinding, travel). A conflicting question...

  • A little more info on the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2012.

    The section in particular reaffirms a presidential power given to the office in a 2001 Authorization for Use of Force bill signed after 9-11 (so it was already a presidential power).

    While the bill was still in committee, before the Senate voted on it, the White House protested the controversial section in an executive statement saying, "The Administration strongly objects to the military custody provision, which would appear to mandate military custody for a certain class of terrorism suspects... Moreover, applying this military custody requirement to individuals inside the United States, as some Members of Congress have suggested is their intention, would raise serious and unsettled legal questions and would be inconsistent with the fundamental American principle that our military does not patrol our streets." He also threatened to veto the Senate version of the bill.

    Faced with veto proof majorities in the house and senate, for him to nix the entire defense spending bill (becoming the first president to do that) over a power that another act a decade earlier already granted him, would have been politically foolish. He would have pissed all over a Senate that barely functions as is and a House that is actively working against him on everything from healthcare reform to ordering lunch, making anything in the future THAT much harder. He also would have given up any power to make any lasting comment about the bill, at least now it has his signing statement attached.

    So far, several bills have come out from both sides of the aisle to pull the text from the bill, none have any chance of passing.

    Yes, you can blame the President for signing the bill, BUT, do not let the hundreds of members of Congress get off scott-free.

    So, Mr. Jaffe has every right to not contribute to anyone, to not vote for anyone, or to vote for the other side, but he should do that knowing all the facts.