Matt's Podcast 13: Backwardness compatibility, Smelly Games, Why Stories and Graphics Suck, Matt's Turn to the Darkside

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Smell me!Smell me!Hi, guys! I'm back with a little podcast here addressing some of the popular threads raised right here at Armchair Arcade. After a special announcement and some talk about my Unity game project, I talk about smelly game environments, three games that made me want to own a system, and backward compatibility. I even briefly kvetch about Tera! Thanks to Mark, Rob D., and Clok for those fun topics!

Download the podcast here.

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Mark Vergeer
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How about...

Looking for the source
The source explained
The source compiled
The source decompiled
The source recompiled
The source code ... And the above....

Ah well they probably suck ;)

Philly thunderstorms are keeping me awake so I listen to you podcast. Congrats on that excellent deal I am looking forward to again sample those wonderful interviews you did in a different and enhanced context.

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Mark Vergeer
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Smell...

Smell, the olfactory sense is indeed a sense that is directly wired to our memory and it could evoke some pretty strong emotional responses to games.

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Mark Vergeer
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Backwards compatibility...

In the short term backwards compatibility is something developers don't want to do as it is thought it hinders and it cloggs up the performance and progression if the new. But is that so? Perhaps it is. It should not have to be.

In the long run lack of backwards compatibility will make older games less accessible or even lost to us. We are now at a point in time where some systems are showing where all systems are invariably heading - death. Just look at the Sega Gamegear with their shot screens and soundless gameplay due to rotten capacitors. There are more examples of systems dying due to cut corners or hardware / design failures. If games remain on these proprietary systems/formats and these formats die due to hardware failure or sheer old age and TVs not supporting the signals the old RF modulators are putting out. Thus these old games are rapidly becoming more inaccessible. Hanging on to the old systems or putting it in a rubbermaid container just isn't enough. I wish it would but not everything is built like a brick...

If video games are a true cultural art form perhaps they should be platform agnostic or made accessible on future platforms. Perhaps this is where emulation comes in? Or live in the here and now and let things slip into oblivian... Hey wasn't that some game I used to play?

Hmm I forgot

Brainfarthing here ;)

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Mark Vergeer
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Gateway - mooh

Well at least you chose Gateway, that cow spotted PC! ;)
Of course it didn't compare to the splendor of the Amiga.

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bytex666
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I truly sympathize with your

I truly sympathize with your Amiga vs PC story, Matt. I was the same kind of diehard zealot. Would laugh at the bad Atari jokes in Amiga Magazines (specially the british ones). Would parade around on IRC on internet bragging that I was using Amiga IRC, sending ppl screenshots of how much BETTER it looked compared to mIRC. Constantly blagging on about the power of aRexx script language, repeat all the lame Windows 95 jokes.

But the software scene eventually died out completely. No new games, no new software, and anything that came out was immediately pirated and mass distributed via IRC channels.

Think I left the Amiga 1200 behind in 1997-98, when a friend had a PC, and showed me the splendor of Daggerfall and Heroes of Might & Magic.
Those two games were my sole reason to get a PC. And the poor A1200 got shelved, I moved away from my old house to go to schools etc.
Also, there were only PC's at school, and no matter how much I wanted to RESIST using them, I had to learn it eventually so I wouldn't fall behind.
I remember even bringing my trusty Amiga2000 to school to show my classmates the cool demos and graphics that their crappy PC's couldn't display, and the awesome music! But eventually the PC's caught up soundwise and graphics-wise too.

Don't remember when I got my first real PC, I kinda just hung at school in the afternoons using their PC's. Probably bought it from the friend that had Daggerfall.

Also, Might & Magic 6 was amazing, IT HAS 3D! Amiga games could do 3D but it would jerk around at 5 FPS. MM6 had actual 3d and no slowdown!
I also remember loving Ultima 9, even though it was supposed to suck ass. I still liked it and finished it. MM7 and 8 and 9 were just bad, more like expansions to MM6 since they used the same engine in all the games.

Heroes of MM3 was my fave game..and by that time I'd forgotten about the Amigas. Course I wish I'd kept them now, but all the hassle of connecting a vintage computer to a HDTV, nahh..

I still get my rose-tinted glasses out when I think of Eye of the Beholder 2 on the Amiga500, or Elvira-Mistress of the Dark.
And of course, there are great emulators for both the Amiga and C64 out nowadays, but it's just not the same as the real thing.

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Matt Barton
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Hehe, I forgot about Heroes

Hehe, I forgot about Heroes of M&M! I think I had the third one about the same time as M&M 6. I'd have a few friends over and we'd play until the wee hours. Not quite as much fun (IMO) as Warlords had been back in the day, but still a hoot.

At some point a new girlfriend introduced me to Baldur's Gate and Icewind Dale. I actually resisted at first, thinking, ah, what could this gal possibly know about rpg's. WRONG! Awesome times.

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bytex666
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Yes! Warlords on the Amiga.

Yes! Warlords on the Amiga. Me and my buddy would spend entire evenings playing that together.
It had both adventuring and army building. We'd normally stop when we had eliminated all the CPU opponents instead of killing eachother.

Currently I'm obsessing about C64 music, trying to learn assembly and read lots of texts online about SID programming. It's complicated stuff, each note has a "hi freq" and "lo freq"., and it's all hexadecimals.
Found a completely commented music routine by The Master, Rob Hubbard. I always loved the sound and music of the C64, and wanna learn how to make music with the actual chip, instead of programs that emulate it.

Listening to your podcast #6, I'm a synthesizer collector of sorts, both analog and digital synths, and have thousands of dollars invested in both old and modern synths. Fun to hear you talk about Mr Moog.

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Rob Daviau
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Oh yeah

I hung onto my Amiga A1200 with Blizzard board 030 cpu @ 50 mhz and 4 mb fast ram much longer than most would have, of course back them no way I could of afforded a PC that was worthwhile anyways. My first real PC was not until Windows 98 had been out for sometime! I finally had to give in and admit that the time of Amiga was over and never coming back, I was the most stubborn and reluctant to do that then anyone I knew but to this day I would never of chosen a different path, so many great memories on those machines, only over the last few years as a "collector" have I finally experienced and obtained Atari 8bit and 16bit computers and having experienced both I know now that I still would of been a commodore/amiga fanboy. Damn I loved that thing.

I am downloading and looking forward to listening to the podcast now Matt! Thanks.

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bytex666
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I didn't really know about

I didn't really know about all the different consoles back in the 80s and 90s, it was all computers for me. It started with a C64 I got for xmas in 1983, and I upgraded to an Amiga500, then a2000 and a1200 eventually. The A2000 was the dumbest waste of cash I've ever spent (and it was my communion money in 8th grade too). They'd just stuffed an A500 into a big beige desktop box, and promised that you could EXPAND it in so many ways. But who could afford to buy expansions? I couldn't. Oh yeah, and OS 1.3 instead (gray workbench, more colours!) of the old OS1.2.
Which meant more hassle to play the pre os-1.3 games since I had to reboot with a 1.2 kickstart disk to play them.

There were quite a bunch of us in my area that had Amigas, and we'd swap disks like crazy :) I remember some looooong boring evenings spent in front of XCOPY with one diskdrive.

Wish I'd bought the A1200 much earlier..I even had a 1230 graphics accellerator card and a 850MB harddrive that was jury-rigged and hung on the outside from a soldered IDE cable.

Only started learning about the classic NES/SNES/Atari/genesis stuff in the last decade or so.

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ruthan
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Techical one, have quiet good

Techical one, have quiet good connection speed, but im donwloading this podcast 50 KB/s something is wrong.

Who: Brujah Zealot, the pimp of babylons bitch. / Location: Scorched heart of Europe. // Sorry for my moldavian sort of english, i have 2 possibilities, to be silent or try to say something +look like idiot..

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