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Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


I'm getting deja vu to discussing Death Wish 3 where there's definitely satire but not everyone was in on the joke. Far Cry 3 clearly wanted to do something with the "white savior" story, but it loses the plot pretty quickly and there were definitely people involved who just thought it was all awesome.

In fairness, I haven't played it, but it sounds like Far Cry 5 also missed the obvious answer of just getting into the weeds more with the cult dynamics if they wanted to stay apolical. There's an interesting bit of Jim Jones' history where at the start there were little competing factions inside the cult. There were intellectuals who thought they were scamming the fundies into being socialists, fundies who thought they were scamming the intellectuals into being followers and the growing cult of personality around Jones himself. That's an easy way to set up 3 leaders if they're still dead set on doing non-linear regions.

After playing Mafia 3 I'm really starting to think that the push for non-linear open world has been a net negative. Mafia 3 would probably have been a lot better with a more linear world.

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Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Yeah, the gameplay is fine, but man it repeats a lot. A few more resources for more mission types would have taken it from a 3/5 to a 4/5. For example, there's "Trafficking Missions" to make your captured businesses generate more money, but they are always literally the same mission. The more scripted stuff was cool, but there's not a lot of it. You can kind of tell that there's a lot of abandoned ideas in it, which is a shame.

The open world mostly hurts the pacing because none of the stories can connect or build. There's a really neat substory where you take down the guy who runs the mob's Cuba smuggling operations. He's the first target who is basically just some random guy. Everyone up to that point has done something pretty bad to you or to one of your allies. When you track him down and kill him, instead of the usual showdown he's just super confused and wants to know what he possibly could have done to deserve having his whole life burned down. It's a great, "man, maybe you're a bit of a monster" moment, but since it can happen at any random point it loses a lot of bite.

Or on the fun side, a few of the big story missions involve Lincoln just pretending to be a random black employee to sneak up to some racist idiot. One of the 3 big targets lets you do the usual lead-up, but then cuts you off with a "did you really think I wouldn't recognize you" moment. It's a fun little subversion if you were starting to laugh a little that a guy with prominent bullet scars is able to walk right up to people who are actively hunting for him. It was fun for me, but I imagine it didn't go over well if you happened to do his set of missions first.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Mr Phillby posted:

I've not listened myself, and I'm sure it won't fit the 'Angry review' mould at all, but Rose Buddies, Griffin Mcelroy's show about The Bachelor, is the only Reality TV podcast I'm even aware of.

I'll second Rose Buddies, it's a pleasant podcast but still pretty funny. It also highlights the reason that there's probably not a ton of reality show coverage. After covering it for a while it's painfully obvious how they script the seasons and it starts to make it hard to get invested in the show. With the Bachelor/Bachelorette it started to be really hard to like the week to week drama when you figured out that "oh, she's just the second attempt at a villain, I bet she's gone next week" and eventually gross stuff surrounding the show starts to weigh it down, which is what took out Rose Buddies.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009



If my memory is right, this was beautiful because the top response was just a picture of the army and the Little Rock Nine.

He seems to get very tunnel-visioned on surface level stuff. Mad Max had violence, therefore it's masculine and bad. This video game is bleak, so it's cynical and bad. If nothing else he's really attached to the rosy view of non-violent that you get from biopics.

it also seems like there's a tricky part that ignoring violence as an option sometimes creates a weird setting. I like what Renknowned Explorers Society did for their speech as combat options, but something like that only works in a non-realistic setting.

And to nerd out about Steven Universe...I get why he would like it, it's basically doing exactly what he's preaching. Our heroes are fighting the good fight, trying to make friends and save their enemies and are all about love and peace...but the show's kind of big on showing how that works out.

Most of the resistance is dead, there's a whole episode about an old member of the group begging them to start using lethal weapons or else they're just going to lose, and the Earth is super hosed up from the war. Plus they're only alive because the villains basically stopped caring about conquering Earth for various reasons. It's a recurring conflict in the show that staying good is coming at a high price.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


There's probably also something to be said about games and movies being limited by being a visual medium. There's a book I've been meaning to read where the central conflict is two cultures trying to understand one another, and apparently the climax is them finally having a conversation.

That's cool, but it really wouldn't work well in big-budget film or in a non-indie game. Explosions and guns are visually thrilling, easy to understand and pretty universal, so they're going to be a big part of big budget games and movies for a while.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Puppy Time posted:


Just cutting out the middledeath and having "Kill people because it's fun overpopulation!" makes it a lot simpler and easier to write.

Also makes the rest easy as hell, since you can just mirror the villain with lots of heroes fighting/dying to try and save one life. Kind of why I'd be confused how anyone who thought critically about the film would think that you were supposed to think Thanos was right at all, or just sympathize beyond "I canonically understand why he's doing this." They didn't turn to the camera and explain the faults of Malthusian but the entire plot was that every life deserved saving even if it winds up being a Saving Private Ryan thing.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Ehh, Thanos is cold bad logic and cynicism opposed to the heroes love and loyalty. I'm not sure if I want to blame the film for the usual edgelords and idiots missing a message that was designed for teenagers. There are always people who are going to walk away with the wrong message no matter how blatant you are (see, Scarface, Breaking Bad, Every War Is Hell movie, etc.)

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Didn't necessarily stop anyone. There have been a few think pieces on Sid.

Looks like Cracked did a few, here's one: http://www.cracked.com/blog/the-3-m...-famous-movies/

Sid's #1.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Dapper_Swindler posted:

This. Just don’t loving talk about politics and focus on dumb nerd poo poo and personal growth talks.

It really is baffling.

I think it was around one of PewdiePie's blowups that some big critic tweeted out a "well I know you're all waiting on my response..." and then gave some dumb centrist "both sides" statement. Like just not saying anything wasn't an option.

I can't 100% pin down where the streamers I like stand politically (other than, doesn't seem like a chud) because they just don't loving talk about politics while they're screwing around in League or Battlegrounds or some party game with friends.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Dapper_Swindler posted:

https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/art...pting-lovecraft

i thought this article was interesting. basically. two devs are trying their hands at two different approachzs with Lovecraft detective type story. one being the more traditional lovecraft ideal (dude trying to solve murder, probaly slowly goes nuts) and the other, where alot of the weird poo poo seems to be more of an everyday occurrence. i kinda agree that the latter seems more interesting.

It makes sense to lean into it. There's a reason that Lovecraft did short stories. You can only have so much cosmic horror before the novelty wears off.

The old Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth game handled it well enough in concept. You start off as the lone detective in town doing stealth stuff and exploration, slowly freaking out as you see weird eldritch stuff. The action rises into a really fun chase sequence, then there's some annoying stuff that breaks the pace, unti it rolls into a big action sequence fighting a bunch of Deep Ones that board a navy ship until you kill Dagon with the artillery pieces on the boat. Sadly that's not the ending and it kind of whiffs it from there, but just leaning into making a fun fanservice trip seems like a better idea than trying for full tension.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


It sucks that Alpha Protocol didn't do well. I would have loved for it to influence gaming more than it did. It's still probably one of the few games that told a story in a way that took advantage of being a game.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


In practice, people with terminal irony poisoning aren't really that different from the real thing.

This came up in the Q-Anon thread. A supposed Q believer ducked into a conspiracy mocking group on Facebook to say, "Hey, guys, it's all a joke. Most of us don't believe it. It's just fun to spend hours a day making detailed conspiracy boards and building an elaborate world of Illuminati child murder." Sure...that's normal.

And it's funny that it only seems to come up when they need an excuse to avoid consequences or social awkwardness.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Reminds me of an interview with the production crew for Gold Rush. They basically go up to Alaska and gently caress around digging a hole for a few months and get no gold, when the whole series was supposed to be an America! rags-to-riches story. They sent it in for editing thinking that it was going to be a flop and then realized how much comedy and schadenfreude they could mine out of Todd Hoffman's stupidity, and an empire was born.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


The multiplayer in Dog Days was cool, it was a shame that it was a bit broken and had some bad maps. Also I think voice chat was on by default, so it was fun to listen to a guy's fan, TV or random background shouting every game because someone forgot their mic was on.

For what it's worth, Dog Days was also willing to go legitimately dark in ways that didn't quite feel like "Whoa, aren't we EXTREME!!!." Wounded cops would beg for their lives and lots of background civilians would die from stray fire without the plot focusing on it.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Max Wilco posted:

From the clips I've seen of Jones, it came across to me like InfoWars could have been passed off as some high-octane version of the Colbert Report that should have aired on Adult Swim.

A few comedians who've talked about him did give him credit for the insanity of having to talk for as long as he does. Just sitting in front of a screen or microphone and having to keep improving is really hard if you don't have a solid focal point. It takes a lot of talent or it starts to get weird. That's why you wind up with Jones just going down the garden path about frogs turning gay, because he's just trying to fill time.

But it's basically impossible to know where the character ends. Supposedly lots of people in Austin had stories that if you ever met him the first thing he would say was "yeah, it's all fake" but a character like that doesn't come from nowhere.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


WampaLord posted:

If it's really all an act, then he's a giant shithole because any decent person would realize the very real damage their "act" is doing and stop it.

E: VVV my point being if people try to excuse it with "oh it's just an act" that doesn't actually excuse anything

Yeah. On the bright side, I usually just hear the "it's an act" tacked on as one more shot against him, or sometimes it's to make his fans seem like people who insist wrestling is real.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Dapper_Swindler posted:

my question has always been. what do these people believe like in this video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LvYQh5xwO4I

There's a fairly wide scale that they can fall on between fraud and believer. An important thing is that a lot of people like this feel it's fine to lie as long as it's in service to their beliefs. Some UFO and Bigfoot people have rationalized their hoaxes by saying that they just wanted to create an atmosphere where "actual" witnesses didn't feel alone. If I say I killed a bigfoot and have him in my garage (and it's really just a Halloween costume full of ground beef), then other people will feel like there's less of stigma and will show their pure HD quality tri-pod recorded Bigfoot or UFO video that they've been sitting on out of fear...supposedly. It's probably just them rationalizing the hoax that they did for attention.

Evangelicals, like the ones in the video, have a similar style. They all sort of know it's a dumb game and that their pastor or speaker wasn't really a satanist/addict/wild child, but they feel that redemption stories are important, even if they're lies. That's why you sometimes get fun times where Ben Carson tried to take his bullshit stories on a national stage. It just never occurs to them that other people would question it or care whether it was true.

And of course there's the regular nuts and the con artists.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Firewatch just feels like it falls apart at the ending. I get what they were going for, but it just made the game so forgettable. It feels like the Only God Forgives of games.

The entire game is about the conversations, yet the dispatcher outright refuses to talk to you for the entire trip to the helicopter after the discovery. And it's just a boring walk out, other than finally seeing her tower and its few little jokes, there's really nothing to give it a strong end. I guess you're supposed to be reflecting on the discovery in the cave, but there's not much to think about.

It's a shame too because it could have been a lot more by either doing more with the orienteering and forest exploration, or the story. There's a really neat game called Near Death that's all about just trying to survive and escape from an Arctic research base. It basically feels like a fleshed out version of Firewatch's gameplay. The story's a lot more simple, but I felt like it delivered on Firewatch's concept so much better.

And, well I guess spoilers for ending of Near Death if anyone cares... It seems to understand itself much better than Firewatch. It's ending has the storm that's lasted all game calm for a moment as you walk down a huge radio tower and head back to base for the last time, and it just lets you enjoy a minute of calm with a view of the entire base and all the little beacons and ropes you put up during the game to find your way. You end the game getting to reflect on all the little things you accomplished. It's simple but it really left an impression.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Wow, Blaire even bragged about it before actually reading the correction. Deleted now but somebody got the screenshot.

https://twitter.com/Duke_Clemens/st...511355695570944

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


That article about the Thieves' Guild questline in Skyrim seemed to nail it with the discussion of plot collapse. Little problems can get plastered over if the movie is good in other areas, or if you're not asking too much of the viewer overall. But sometimes a plot hole is really bad because it shakes you up enough to make you question the whole movie and it just all falls apart.

^ efb

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


It's kind of like Dan's playthrough of the first Kane and Lynch I saw a while back. It's interesting to look back on the series, but the whole time you have to suffer through repetitive shooting and struggle against the controls. It's hard to keep enthusiasm up, unless you have the fun of breaking the game over your knee that speedrunning provides.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


It's a shame because when everyone was focused on fighting/mocking creationism, the skeptics community was an alright pro-science place that had the potential to help a lot of angry young atheists (including myself) find a bit of peace and become slightly normal, if goony, adults. Like the Contrapoints video on Peterson said, generally the left doesn't provide a lot of structure to actually tell you how to live your life. For a brief time the skeptic communities organized social events and offered a sense of community and direction for people who needed it, and it was generally united as socially left thanks to pro-LGBT stuff.

But there was always an undercurrent of Islamaphobia, sexism and generally toxic levels of smugness. Once the creationists retreated, a lot of people wanted a new great enemy to dunk on and that was when the bigotry and sexism just came out into the open.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Basically it's just a question of consistency. This is what the Death of the Author argument is about. If the author outright says that their work doesn't match your interpretation, is it wrong?

For example, NyxFears put up a really interesting reading of Hereditary that the creator apparently went ahead and shot down. But that doesn't make it less interesting. It's just not what the creator intended.

At heart, readings of movies and books are done for your own enjoyment or fulfillment, so there aren't too many "wrong" ways to do them.

Unless you're saying Fahrenheit 451 is pro-censorship or something insane like that. Even being a realism idiotic isn't really wrong, just kind of boring and annoying.

Parakeet vs. Phone fucked around with this message at 20:19 on Nov 2, 2018

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


OscarDiggs posted:

Alright... So the themes and stuff are one thing. But editing and cinematography (whish is the art of camerawork supposedly?) are also things.

If literature and English classes are supposed to teach themes, how do you learn about editing?

Generally you'd learn it from film class electives in college or reading or listening to critiques like what this thread kicks up. If you're interested, you'll tend to pick things as you go. I learned about the Kuleshov Effect from a comment on a Best of the Worst episode.

I was going to do a write up on it, but it turns out Dan already did a video on it, which would give you an idea of how editing works within a movie: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vy2Vhnqtu8I. Short of it is that arranging shots in certain ways enhances the emotions you perceive from the actors.

There's also something to be said that most of this is just mental masturbation. Great editing works without the viewer necessarily realizing it. The long shot of Rusty and Cole robbing the biker gang in True Detective is intense and immersive, even if you don't understand what went into it or the psychology behind it.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


CineD can be alright, but drat there are moments of straight up Mandela Mengele Effect when it comes to talking about Star Wars/Transformers/DC/Marvel.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Terrible Opinions posted:

Dead Space had a perfect ending. They killed off all human life in a cutscene made by sliding copy/pasted concept art around on a skybox. I cannot imagine a better way to say gently caress you with the writing of a game. Either gently caress you to their publishers or to their fans, but either way it was a definitive artistic statement, whereas ME3 was just a wet fart.

Reminds me of an underappreciated little gently caress you in Mass Effect 3. After playing with whether they'd reveal Tali's face in the series, they go ahead and do it by whiting out the eyes on a stock image of a generic white lady. It was kind of funny to laugh at that little section of the fanbase freaking out about their waifu, but it's still an incredible bit of everyone just being done with the game.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


DEEP STATE PLOT posted:

me2 is a great example of hopw plot actually doesn't need to matter that much if the writing and atmosphere are still good. the loyalty missions were great and the characters you recruit were awesome and omega was a really rad place that i'd play an entire game based in.

well, not all that stuff was great i guess. miranda suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucked, but my point still stands.

I stand by the old criticism that Bioware obviously didn't have any understanding of what people liked about Mass Effect, since they never pumped out Mass Effect: Citadel Cop to cash the easiest check ever. Any time they go for big world ending monsters or plots the stories go to hell.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


stillvisions posted:

With most games the devil is in the details. Papers Please sounds like a McIntosh game pitch on the surface (minus the part where he probably wouldn't abide you being a part of the problem to prove a point) but the execution makes it work. I knew a guy who used to go on endlessly about wanting to make a video game about "teaching why war is bad and brings suffering and misery" and when asked how this would sell his answer was "we'd make it fun", like that was the secret to make this work and didn't have to justify it with an actual mechanic. If you're going to be smug and write game pitches like that, don't expect anyone to believe you.

It's a shame that the Gods Will Be Watching game ended up sucking in execution, because a concept like that seems like it could work. You can do awful poo poo to beat the challenges easily and risk-free, but if you're willing to put in work and roll the dice you can end up with a moral victory.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


McIntosh's undeserved certainty is just annoying. Like with RDR 2, he's just wrong conceptually about the bounty system and didn't listen to the commenter. The wanted state is similar to GTA, but the bounty system is meant to be annoying by design as a form of punishment. The execution of it isn't perfect, since the bounty system is kind of janky, but by design it's not really exciting or rewarding. The game is actively pushing back against some of the usual GTA mayhem.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Arist posted:

Paranoia Agent is loving great and I'd love to own it but for whatever reason the only official release I can find is an old-as-hell DVD release that's not even in the right region for me. It deserves a lot better.

At least they've been nice enough to leave it up on Youtube. A few years back the Adult Swim thread did a watch party through one of those YouTube synch sites, and it looks like that playlist is still up.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


It's kind of hard to be angry at any particular misstep in Fantastic Beasts 2 because the whole movie is just kind of a mess.

Honestly, the few remaining creature segments stood out as at least decent. Kind of a shame that they had to go back to the evil wizard well.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Dapper_Swindler posted:


FB1 was a fun different movie. wish it had been him loving around with the thunderbird and not damaged kid gets shot by wizard cops.

I went with family because my niece is absolutely nuts for Harry Potter and there wasn't much else out this Thanksgiving. And the moment they go Oh, btw Creedence lived through the firing squad because...gently caress it, I guess we couldn't come up with another plot thread. was when I settled in for a rough ride. Maybe it's because I only saw FB 1 a few days ago, but that felt like a crazy decision.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Oh, welp...kind of takes all the emotion out of that scene in the first movie.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


As someone admittedly without much investment in Harry Potter, it seems like part of the problem is how she handles it. Instead of just admitting that she was a novice author who failed to make her books diverse, she wants to pretend that it was always secretly diverse and she was woke all along. Maybe if she had admitted that she didn't do a great job, she might have actually listened to people and FB 2 wouldn't have been a weird monkey's paw wish.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Yeah, charitably I'd say most of her problems are the same as Quidditch not making a lot of sense. It was a mistake she made at the beginning when she was making normal beginner's mistakes and by the time it came up it was too late to change too much, unless you just wanted to do a bunch of sweeping retcons. But, yeah she's going the Lucas route.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Dapper_Swindler posted:

id love to get into one of these deep mindfuck type games. but they always have tanky/floaty game play at best. the best i can do is Kojima and taro.

I think I made it about halfway through on a Doctor/Bachelor run before I started to bounce off of it. Pathologic's combat controls aren't horrible for an old game, the problem is really more just that there's a lot of combat and looting filler and it's not particularly fun. I think a solid LP may be a better experience than actually playing. I'm still hopeful for Pathlogic 2 cleaning things up. They're amazing for atmosphere, just wish the game bit was better.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Maybe I'm wrong, but it felt like they wanted an escape hatch to avoid outright offending people. The Dumbledore/Grindelwald stuff felt just ambiguous enough for them to possibly be a blood brothers thing, if you just really didn't want to see it as a relationship. It kind of sucks since all they do is tell you how much they love each other, there's never really a build-up and it's kind of a big deal for the plot.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


bobjr posted:

Yeah I totally understand that how it doesn’t make sense wouldn’t change their minds or anything, I was just more curious if there was an explanation at all.

EFB: On the ice wall theory.

But anyway, I end up posting about them a lot, but there's a podcast called Oh No Ross and Carrie that covered flat earthers for awhile and even cooperated with them to do some experiments that help illustrate how the Earth is round (to no effect). They've got the patience of saints, and even they admitted that they're pretty much done with Flat Earthers because they're the most infuriating people to try and talk to.

For the rest, a lot of Flat Earthers also probably believe all the Trump and right-wing conspiracy stuff. There's some that are just mentally ill or just kind of dumb, but a lot are coming from the same place as hardcore Trump people. Angry, unable to communicate why or analyze things, and ready to jump onto whatever bandwagon feels right or just right-wing people who only care about being superior or proving their religion is right.

Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


CYBEReris posted:

my conspiracy theory is that conspiracy theories once constructed are spread as a Bernays-style method of social control

No joke, you've entered the second layer of conspiracy theory hell, and have probably stared too long into the void, when you find people arguing about which theories are true and which are disinfo agents trying to discredit them. Pretty sure the Loose Change 9/11 truth forum once broke down over everyone arguing that everyone else was a secret Fed.

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Parakeet vs. Phone
Nov 6, 2009


Flat Earth is pretty similar to the death panel/Obama's an atheist/communist/Muslim block, it just hasn't had time to grow or get introduced to a big audience. Boomers and the alt-right believed in death panels because they left Fox News on for a weird mid-day segment, or they saw alt-right stuff shared on Facebook. There's nothing really stopping Flat Earth from at least growing to Qanon levels, if it's not addressed. Right now, YouTube autoplay just keeps feeding new people into the grinder.

Also, I'm pretty sure there are a couple Flat Earth who think that there are may be other planets and moons and that they're round. We're just special. It gets into some weird old school pre-Copernicus solar system models. The sad thing is that Flat Earthers are sometimes well educated on very specific sections of scientific history.

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