Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Chamberlain & Chance 113 - Through the Fire and Flames

Wiiiith Alex!  Alex thisChamberlain that podcast on iTunespodcast on Google Play!

Chamberlain and Chance - Through the fire and flames

  • Alex cheats death!  
  • Chance is no longer stuck on Flinthook's second boss, and is now stuck on Flinthook's third boss!  
  • Chamberlain plays more shitty games so you won't have to!  
  • And how much better than FFXV is FFXII?
You'll have to tune in to find out!

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Very, very, very, very, very, very, VERY good news.

So Nintendo had a little ten-minute "Nindies" stream today.  Here's the full stream.  Announced today for Switch were...

Worth watching are Light Fall, The Messenger and Bad North, but this is not very, very, very, very, very, very, VERY good news.  Under merely very good news, there's The Banner Saga.

Story and choice-driven strategy-RPG The Banner Saga 3 will come to Switch this summer (everything announced today got a release window, at best, never a date).  But also coming "soon" are The Banner Saga and The Banner Saga 2.  Here's hoping they actually show up before Banner Saga 3 so you can play them first, and carry your progress over.

But, again, this is merely very good news.  And today brought very, very, very, very, very, very, VERY good news.

...and here it is:

Klei Entertainment's Mark of the Ninja is coming to the Switch this fall as Mark of the Ninja Remastered.

Holy shit.  I tuned into the direct at work today, and it began with Mark of the Ninja's reveal.  I literally leapt out of my chair and jump around fist pumping.  I had never dared to dream.

Mark of the Ninja is a modern masterpiece.  It was my Game of the Year for 2012, despite the fact that it only appeared on the Xbox 360 at the time - a platform I probably maxed out at six games for, total, which had a controller I loathed.

Prior to Mark of the Ninja, Klei Entertainment had only made the pretty-darned-good (beautifully-presented) Shank, and the goddamned-excellent Shank 2Mark of the Ninja was the game that let us know these might be some of the best game developers in the world. The perfection of Mark of the Ninja - a classic 2D platformer with incredibly thoughtful, well-executed and gorgeous stealth - was the first indication that Klei would go on to produce the masterful Roguelike Don't Starve and the critically acclaimed blend of genres that is Invisible, Inc.

Mark of the Ninja is one of the best games of this century, as far as I'm concerned, and the single best stealth game that's ever been made.  It's also a 2D platformer.  With hand-drawn sprites.  And incredible animation.  And gorgeous overall presentation.  And absolutely wonderful action platforming.  Oh my God.

I had never dared hope, because... well, look at the logos in the bottom-left of that image above.  Mark of the Ninja was published by Microsoft Studios - an Xbox 360 exclusive that eventually made its way to PC, Klei have said that Mark is actually Microsoft's intellectual property, and Klei didn't have the option to port it over to PS4 or Vita.  I'd never imagined, in my wildest dreams, that one of my favorite stealth games, one of my favorite platformers of all time, would be playable on a handheld, but here we are.


I love Hyper Light DrifterLOVE.  IT.  When it came to PS4, I absolutely adored it, and patiently waited for the Vita version, which had been promised when the game's Kickstarter hit that stretch goal.

It never came to Vita.  Instead, the head of studio Heart Machine said he had the sniffles, couldn't do the port, and a week later announced he was hiring for a big new project!  Fuck you, buddy - that still stings.

...but it only stung that bad because I love Hyper Light Drifter so much.  I returned to it for three or four playthroughs back in December, and wrote the closest thing I ever did to a review for it. I've been dying for Hyper Light Drifter on a handheld the moment it was announced, and it will apparently land on Switch... this summer.

Mark of the Ninja on Switch.

Hyper Light Drifter on Switch.

Today is a very good day.

Brigitte is live in Overwatch, but more importantly Sombra got nerfed.

So yeah.  Brigitte's up, but she won't be available in competitive mode until Season 10 starts - around May 15th.  Not kidding, you can't play her in comp for like six weeks.  Her intro vid's pretty good.

More importantly...

A ton of bug fixes went up with Brigitte's patch - notably, now you'll be able to see your teammates' ult charges on the team info screen, so I won't have to constantly bug my Zarya for her ult charge percentage - handy!

But here's the best bit:
  • Now goes on a 2-second cooldown when interrupted by damage
  • Now more consistently interrupted when targets break line of sight
Developer Comments: We’re also removing the 0.1 second window of time during a hack where it couldn’t be canceled via line of sight or with other abilities including Tracer’s Recall and Zarya’s Particle Barrier, which was originally put in place so the hack wouldn’t be interrupted by small objects such as light posts. We’ve implemented a separate fix for that issue, so she should still be unaffected by those small objects.

This.  Is.  Awesome.  I can't count the number of times I've blinked out of Sombra's range around a corner or hit Rewind, only to find myself hacked anyway.  Here's hopin' this solves that bullshit ability's yet more excessive level of bullshit.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Overwatch Match Highlights 16 - Looking for a Fox (the Widows of Ayutthaya)

Putting this vid together started with the first of the two Widows we see, here (Ninja_Trollzor69).  It was a crazy-awesome, fun game (the PotG where I have the flag ended up getting us a point), and they were super-nice when I sent them a GG afterwards.  So I was like okay, that's a vid, and put together the first half of the vid fairly quickly.  For weeks, this vid ended with a montage of other, unrelated PotGs, but I wasn't happy with it, and decided I wanted to be just a vid of duels, and kept on looking for footage - and ended up finding my matches against AllAimNoName - a very serious and professional Widow who has no time for my bullshit. 

Where Ninja_Trollzor distinguished themselves by obliterating my team in the first teamfight, AllAimNoName established very quickly that they were very good at killing me, personally, and I thought their initial domination of me was a nice counterpoint to the way I ran circles around Ninja_Trollzor.  For the record, my team won the match against Ninja_Trollzor, and of the three matches against AllAimNoName, we went 2 and 1.  There was a great one where, after I take out their shield gen (which is in the vid) and my team moves in, I snuck up behind AllAimNoName, gently brushed the last 20% of their life bar off, picked up the flag, killed their Lucio and strolled alllll the way back to my base to score. 

It was awesome. 

Oh, I guess I should post the vid.  I'm really happy with how it turned out! I've wanted to use this song since I first heard it, and Widow duels seemed like the ideal subject. 

...but it seems the public disagrees.  I posted this to the Penny Arcade forums on like, Thursday, I think, and didn't get a single heart off it >.< oh well.  I love it.  And so does Ninja_Trollzor69, so there's at least two people out there with excellent taste.

I hit the subscribe button - it seemed polite, and that's what the "thanks" is about.  Here's Ninja_Trollzor69's YouTube channel.  Their last posted video is gameplay of Senran Kagura: Peach Beach Splash and I'm like "man, what're the odds?"

So that interaction couldn't have gone better, in my opinion.  I wonder why no one else liked it?  

I wish someone would tell me why they feel it sucks?  Is the footage just boring?  Is the song offensive, in today's political climate?  No one's talking - but I make these vids for me, and I'm still a fan. 

G'night everybody!

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Chamberlain & Chance 112 - Remember To Look Up At The Stars

Wiiiith Alex!  Alex thisChamberlain that podcast on iTunespodcast on Google Play!

Chamberlain and Chance - Remember to look up at the stars

  • Alex totally sells Chance on Dead Cells!
  • Alex prudently warns Chamberlain away from Dead Cells!
  • Chance checks out Flinthook on the Switch!
  • And how many indies did Chamberlain play this week?
You'll have to tune in to find out!

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Game Diary - Overwatch Season 9 placements.

It did not go well.  It went very, very, very badly, and I have a working theory.

In season 8, I played 100% of competitive with my brother, who's about 900 rank below me - the result being, I'd consistently be playing against people give-or-take around 450 rank below me, and doing quite well against them.  This resulted in relatively few deaths, and almost 28 elims per 10 minutes, on average.

I did very, very well last season.  Which made Overwatch's ranking system think that a guy putting out these numbers should be ranked somewhere in Platinum (I ended season 8 at 2450ish, but because of my stats, the system thinks I should be higher).  Because the system thought I should be higher, it refused to allow me to do my placements with my brother, who was at about 16 or 1700. I guess it imagined I should be 2700+, and so, in my placement matches for season 9 last night, it was putting me up against people approaching diamond rank.

I assure you, I am not diamond.  Not skilled enough to be, and hold my own against them, I should say.  And last night made that abundantly clear.

I went 2 and 8, last night.  2 and 8.  I have a 20% win rate, on Tracer in season 9 competitive - down from almost 80% last season!  It was absolutely brutal.  Crushing.  Disheartening.  I did get three Plays of the Game and two of them weren't too shabby - but it's still deeply disappointing to kinda' be told that no, I need to stay in my lane and my lane is not-quite-platinum.

On the bright side, I was able to continue my habit of only sending positive messages when someone distinguishes themselves in my games.  The first was a gold gun Roadhog on Junkertown - on the enemy team - who was amazing with the scrap gun.  Most Roadhogs can't hit me unless they've hooked me first, but this guy was incredible about consistently landing his shots, and I needed to tell him so.

Awww that makes me feel better.

Later, there was a Zenyatta who was actually in two games - always on the enemy team - who was absolutely monstrous.  Incredible accuracy with standard orbs and their barrage, they were my #1 priority every time I got to the point, and they frankly put me in my place.

"Annoying" was seriously the best they could say, because probably 7 times out of 10, yeah.  Barrage to the head.  Very humbling.  I certainly wasn't threatening.

Towards the end of my placements, I had a match on Gibraltar.  I had a Zarya on my team and she was just remarkable.  She got her ult no less than three times per round, working out to like 6 or 7 gravs for the whole game, and every single time her ult was approaching readiness, she'd let us know.  Every single time she had it, she'd communicate and hold on to it if I didn't have mine, and I was able to combo with her for all but one of those gravs.

We lost - because I was Loser Personified last night - but I had to let her know it wasn't on account of her awesome Zarya.

I was so pissed off.  It was her best grav of the game - she got 4 of them, on their final push of their attack around, when they were like 10 yards from where we'd pushed it on our attack round, I'm in perfect range - I blink in, throw the bomb - STUCK! pops up on my screen, I blink back, hear the boom annnd... nothing.

I couldn't understand it, at the time.  They had no Lucio ult, they had no shields, their D.Va was out of mech, they had nothing to protect them from the pulse bomb.  I just hadn't seen the deflecting Genji.

Brutal.  Just brutal.

So when all was said and done, after finishing comp last season at 2450, and losing 80% of my placement matches this season, it placed me at... 2541.  Platinum. 100 points above where I ended last season.

Okay then!

...I sure hope I've convinced the system that it's reasonable for me to play with my brother again...

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Okami HD is coming to Switch this summer.

I make it a point to never do a blog post after I post this week's podcast.  You wanna' have the podcast at the top of the blog the day you post it, y'know?  But... but but but...

I don't need to tell you, I suspect, that I love my Vita. When PS2 ports began appearing for it, I immediately assembled a wish list, which was very short.

  • Ratchet & Clank
  • Sly Cooper
  • Odin Sphere
  • Okami
The PS2 Ratchet & Clank trilogy got a not-bad Vita port, and Odin Sphere Leifthrasir (on PS4 and Vita) is the definitive way to experience the game, in my opinion, but sweet, sweet Okami never happened.  

Okami remains one of my favorite games of all time.  I used to replay that thing once or twice a year, and ever since the Vita suggested it was even possible, I've been dying for it on a handheld.  

I've never been hyped for a Nintendo Direct.  Still won't be for the next one, probably - but today, scrolling through my Twitter feed, news that Okami HD will come to the Switch this summer almost put me in a good mood (long story - I'm in a bad mood.  Let's not dwell on it.)

It seems it'll be digital-only, and it launches on July 10th - just in time to make the summer lull in games releases bearable.  Word is, this is a version of the same HD port PS4, PC and Xbox One got last year - so it'll be a very definitive version of the game - but of course it'll have Switchy waggle support if you detach the joycons and it'll have touchscreen support because I don't know why. 

As long as it controls as well here as it did on the PS2 back in '07, I'll be happy.  

Well, happier.  


Chamberlain & Chance 111 - Uncomfortable News

Wiiiith Alex!  Alex thisChamberlain that podcast on iTunespodcast on Google Play!

Chamberlain and Chance - Uncomfortable news

  • Chamberlain meets two games he actually cannot abide!  I know, it threw me, too. 
  • Alex gives his final judgment on Civilization VI: Rise and Fall!
  • Chance gives a tepid endorsement of The Final Station!
  • And did Chance's day today go any better than any other day this week?
FUCK NO IT DIDN'T!  Overwatch fan art!!!!!

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Brigitte fan art, anyone?

Let's do this.

Oh, I wanna' mention, for most Japanese artists it's tends to be kinda' impossible to find the source.  The closest thing to Artstation, Deviantart or Tumblr that they seem to use over there is a thing called Pixiv, which I have a lotta' trouble with so I'll just give the artist's name (I tend not to save an image, these days, if I can't at least get the artist's name).  But wherever I can, I'll do better than a name and you'll get a link to the artist.

So heeere we go!

Artist goes by "Vmat"

allen aak12343523

This one's gorgeous - Ross Tran's stuff always is:

But I think the below is my favorite Brigitte so far, actually:

"jang ju hyeo"

This one is my second-favorite:

And finally, some comix.  Oh, I feel I should mention, for some reason the community has determined that Brigitte's official 'ship is with D.Va

G'night everybody!