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Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Now You Can Shoot Men for Harassing You on the Street

Posted by on Tue, Jul 9, 2013 at 1:39 PM

Sent by Slog Tipper Theodore Gorath, and offered without comment, I give you the game trailer for Hey Baby:

Friday, June 28, 2013

Slog Nerd Happy TONIGHT!

Posted by on Fri, Jun 28, 2013 at 11:27 AM

It's the last Friday of the month, and that means Slog Nerd Happy! Come on down to Raygun Lounge from 5pm until late to kibbitz with us and Mary P. Traverse over board games, card games, and whatever anybody else wants to bring, play, or teach.

Eric at Gamma Ray had a fine suggestion for our very special guests on this very special Pride Edition of Slog Nerd Happy: Local designer Jake Zukowski and his husband Tres are going to demo Lohai, a great-looking game that has been enticingly described as “like Hearts but with enough randomness and variety to keep it fun.” Sold! (And if Jake and Tres look familiar tonight, you might be remembering them—a.k.a. "Spouse A" and "Spouse B"—from the teevee or the front page of the Seattle Times back in December.)

Lohai is a card game that you play with cards.
  • Lohai is a card game that you play with cards.

The Lounge's new managers Dan and Kerry are also mixing up some $4 drink specials: sangria and something called a "Black Vulture," a drink that presumably involves red wine, Coke, Treasure Type B, and a 10% chance to gate in another Black Vulture.

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

It's Time For Another Edition of Name That Street Drug

Posted by on Tue, Jun 25, 2013 at 10:47 AM

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This baggie of something or other was spotted on 45th in the University District. The items were not pills but quarter-inch sized, fuzzy-edged flakes of unidentified material. I dared not touch them because what if they were LSD or something? My lazy Sunday could have gone real weird. The pic sort of sucks, but they look blurry more due to the aforementioned fuzzy-edgeness of the things than any lack of focus. So, Slog Street Drug Task Force™, what are they?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Microsoft's Grand Plan Comes to Fruition

Posted by on Wed, Jun 19, 2013 at 4:07 PM

The XBone will be somewhat freer than initially advertised. MS either acquiesced to customer pressure by easing up on harsh DRM policies—or played us all for suckers in a short con designed to get their new machine more press than Sony got for the PS4. We'll play along for now.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Diana Jones Award Shortlist

Posted by on Fri, May 31, 2013 at 1:50 PM

Nerds in the know watch for the Diana Jones Award every year, because they consistently pick some really great stuff. This year's shortlist, announced yesterday, is no different. Games (and basically anything that's a game-related noun) get nominated based on merit and not commercial success, by a mostly anonymous group of industry illuminati. (And the award's cred is only enhanced by the fact that it's given at a GenCon party and its genesis involves TSR, "Nazi™" figures, and the mass-burning of boxes of the Indiana Jones RPG.)

If you're looking for games and gamer-ly stuff to add to your life list, the shortlist is worth tucking away somewhere handy—and you probably even know some previous honorees, like Dominion and BoardGameGeek. Woot for the well-deserved props to Wil Wheaton's Tabletop series this year!

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

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Slog Nerd Happy! TONIGHT!

Posted by on Fri, May 31, 2013 at 10:48 AM

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  • mr herriman

It's the last Friday of the month, and that means it's time for Slog Nerd Happy TONIGHT at Raygun Lounge!

The Raygun Lounge opens at 5pm, and Slog Nerd Happy commences shortly thereafter. Come hang out, have a beer, play a game! See you there!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Microsoft Resets Xbox to One

Posted by on Tue, May 21, 2013 at 1:33 PM

If you'd like to read about the press event Microsoft held today to unveil their new Xbox, the Xbox One, you should visit The Verge. There are all kinds of tech improvements over the last console, including audio commands, a Blu-ray player, a Kinect sensor, vibrating controllers, Skype, a Halo TV series, live TV, and exclusive games.

If you'd like to read a good piece about what the Xbox One (and the disappointing Wii U and whatever Playstation is working on) might mean, news intern Ansel Herz directed my attention to Luke Plunkett's explanation of why these new video game consoles are "bumming" him "out."

...I've got an overbearing sense of melancholy. Maybe even ennui. Not at the machines themselves; the PS4 seems supremely capable, and I've no doubt the next Xbox will be similar. No, I'm sad about the fact that this feels like the last gasp. A final hurrah.

The end of console gaming as we know it.

Maybe I can't see gaming's forest for the trees. Maybe I'm just bleak. But I can't see another round of console launches after this. OK, perhaps Nintendo can squeeze one more in, if only out of necessity, but the prospect of Sony and/or Microsoft having the will - or the money - to make a PS5 or Xbox 1080 in 5-8 years seems remote.

I am not a gamer—I can be a gamer or I can be books editor at The Stranger; I cannot do both—but this feels true to me. The idea of a single device to serve a single function feels like something out of the last century, and as much as these devices may try to make themselves into multi-purpose entertainment center devices, I think the idea of a gaming console is not long for this world.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Aaahh Break Out!

Posted by on Wed, May 15, 2013 at 12:46 PM

Did you know today is the 25th35th anniversary of Atari's classic Breakout? Google does!

Follow the link or type "Atari Breakout" into Google Image Search to play.

This is you?
  • This is you?

Thanks to Slog tipper Greg!

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

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Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Candy Land: The RPG

Posted by on Tue, May 7, 2013 at 9:27 AM

There are too many retro games to count, but only a few of them are fun on their own terms. This may result from the rapid evolution of gaming—any particular slice of nostalgia is only going to light up a few brains which were wrapped up in games during the month or year in question. ASCII games may have lasted longer than other tech, but they only touched a few of us who were so needy for dopamine that we chose to identify with @ symbols as they barreled through typographic mazes, questing for Amulets of Yondor and such. Candy Box takes ASCII graphics and, er, story, wraps it in some interesting mechanics and extremely silly candy themes, and offers something way more fun than it ought to be.

Part of the joy of the game is learning how to play—the dev should be making top dollar consulting with other devs on camouflaging tutorials—so we won't say much more than that your playful messing around will be rewarded. The game is more food-obsessed than Pac-Man, Burger Time, and Cooking Mama put together, and it is weird and challenging enough to keep us coming back.

This is you. On the left. The dragon is not you.
  • This is you. On the left. The dragon is not you.

Oh! Wait! This is important! Saving is messed-up, weird, and easy to forget. You've got to click a tiny button marked "Save" at the top of the main tab, and then either bookmark the link it gives you or note the five-character tag so you can retrieve your save later. You could also just leave your browser running indefinitely, of course. We failed to save several times early on, and the riddles of the swamp frog were only entertaining the first time through.

Please note: Candy Box is, as far as we can tell, in no way associated with Candy Land.

Thanks to Slog zoom-tipper Christine!

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Slog Nerd Happy TONIGHT!

Posted by on Fri, Apr 26, 2013 at 12:47 PM

The Raygun Lounge opens at 5pm, and Slog Nerd Happy commences shortly thereafter. Come on down to 501 E Pine and play Legend of the Cipher, Thirteenth Age, or whatever your heart desires (some desires may not be available at this time, offer not valid in Delaware). Have a beer! Try an extra-tasty samosa! Mingle with your fellow nerd stars! It is impossible to regret any decisions made at Slog Nerd Happy. Just ask this fellow:

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Nerdy Slog Happy Hour, TOMORROW

Posted by on Thu, Apr 25, 2013 at 10:07 AM

The last Friday of the month is upon us again! It's time for our board-and-card-game Nerdy Slog Happy Hour, from after work until 9 or 10 at Gamma Ray. Thankfully, the cripplingly bright daylight should abate by then, so you won't have to feel bad about gaming indoors (or, for some of you, risk any penalties to Dex and to-hit).

If you've never had the opportunity to sling battle raps—or if you just want to witness the spectacle that is "Table-top Hip Hop"—we've got special guest Gerald King, one of the developers behind Legend of the Cipher. What's that look like? We're as curious as you—but you can find some clues here as Penny Arcade's Jerry Holkins throws down a shanty rhyme at the Enforcer after-party at PAX East, about halfway through this video:

We'll also bring along the as-yet-unreleased ruleset for D&D variant 13th Age, which just got much love on BoardGameGeek. Check it out between games, or if you're as nerdy as us and just like to roll up characters, we'll be there for you.

What else do you guys want to play? If you want to bring a game, or want somebody else to bring something and teach, speak up in the comments.

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

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Friday, April 19, 2013

"In the game of patriarchy, women are not the opposing team. They are the ball."

Posted by on Fri, Apr 19, 2013 at 11:32 AM

Remember Anita Sarkeesian, the woman behind the pop culture blog Feminist Frequency who launched a successful $160,000 Kickstarter campaign last year to research and report on misogyny in video game culture, much to the howling rage of an internet's worth of misogynist gamers?

Sarkeesian's first part of the series was released last month and even if you're not a gamer, the way she tackles her topic—Damsels in Distress—is both approachable and fascinating. Sarkeesian methodically hits upon everything from etymology to Greek mythology to mustachio'd villains and railroad-strapped damsels, to Popeye and King Kong, eventually illustrating how women became popular objects to be stolen and rescued and stolen again in generations of modern video games with demeaning tags like, Willst thou get the girl... or play like one?

"The damsel in distress is not just a synonym for weak," she explains. "Instead, it works by ripping away the power from female characters... distilled down to its essence, the plot device works by trading the disempowerment of female character for the power of male characters."

If you've already seen this video, congrats! You won the internet! If you haven't, it's well worth your time.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Nimble Quest and Auralux = So Good

Posted by on Fri, Apr 5, 2013 at 3:40 PM

Sadly, we've only got one review copy of BioShock Infinite—so that means one of us has had to slum it in mobile while waiting for the chance to revel in (and/or grump over) one of the apparently best games evar. (And where has the time gone? We're already in the midst of the BI backlash!)

Fortunately, in the meantime, we've had a couple of crazy good mobile games to suck on like a pair of aluminum-foil pipes:

  • Nimble Quest, on iOS and Android. People are still making snake games? Maybe the last time you saw one was on your Nokia in 1998, but yes: yes, they are, and you'll be forgiven for underestimating this little fantasy game, right up until its dopamine-fueled tentacles have finished scraping out your entire subcortex like a relentlessly cute kraken. Your "snake" is a party of adventurers, which you unlock and add to one by one—a paladin here, a wizard there, each with its own upgradeable abilities—as you wind through short and increasingly difficult levels filled with spiders, skeletons, knights, and what-have-you. No doubt inspired by the recent vogue of roguelikes, each game of Nimble Quest kills you for good, starting you back at the beginning—but, importantly, with all of your expanded abilities, upgrades, and party size intact (which makes the getting through the early levels more of an enjoyable sprint than a trial). Like all respectable humans, we will never spend money on a freemium game (or at least never admit to it), but Nimble Quest perfectly surfs that whorl of multiple currencies, grinding, and self-respect, with a tight, satisfying design that reveals itself in pieces.

    You know this will be LARPed at PAX.
    • You know this will be LARPed at PAX.

  • Auralux, on iOS and Android. Wow, this is the sweet spot of casual design and hard-core gameplay. Despite being enjoyable even for a real-time strategy noob, Auralux is probably the most "pure" RTS game you'll ever play: You have a base. It makes units. Those units can take over other bases to make more units. There is only one kind of unit, and the only thing you can do is tell that unit to move. Which is the game designer's way of telling you, "If you lose, it's your fault." And all of this happens against a trancey, slo-mo backdrop, with semi-deranged space-calliope sounds that track to the action. Like Nimble Quest, Auralux also gets its pricing right: the game is free, and you pay (not much) to unlock new maps when you want more challenges. We may be getting to the point where if you have a million monkeys working on a million app provisioning platforms, you eventually get some smart, non-obnoxious, sustainable pricing schemes.

This is a lot more exciting than it looks.
  • This is a lot more exciting than it looks.

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

Friday, March 29, 2013

TONIGHT! It's Slog Nerd Happy Time Again!

Posted by on Fri, Mar 29, 2013 at 12:44 PM

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  • mr. herriman
Join us tonight from 5-10 pm at Raygun Lounge for our monthly evening of board games and beers!

It is also Tabletop Eve, the night before 3/30/13, which celebrity nerds Wil Wheaton and Felicia Day have announced will be International Tabletop Day*. Saturday is full of board game events, so check in with your favorite local game store to see what they've got on offer.

* Check out Tabletop, the web series hosted by Wil Wheaton. I cannot recommend it enough, it's turned me on to several games and it's fun to watch!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

UPDATE: Slog Nerd Happy This Friday 5-10PM at Raygun Lounge

Posted by on Tue, Mar 26, 2013 at 2:12 PM

Another month has passed and we are that much closer to death, or summer, or whichever temporal milestone you like best. Celebrate nerd-style with booze and analog games this Friday from 5-10pm at Raygun Lounge for the next Slog Nerd Happy. We're sharing space-time with a Yelp Geek event, so you can expect 2d8 wandering nerds in attendance. Some of them, no doubt, will drop fat loot, but let's try to parley before taking our surprise round. Some of us have Chaotic Good reputations to maintain.

It is also Tabletop Eve, the night before 3/30/13, which celebrity nerds Wil Wheaton and Felicia Day have announced will be International Tabletop Day*. Saturday is full of board game events, so check in with your favorite local game store to see what they've got on offer. Or get down to Norwescon and party old-school. Whatever you do, roll some dice.

* Check out their nifty web series!

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Father of the Year Puts Plumber in Peril

Posted by on Tue, Mar 12, 2013 at 6:41 AM

In case you missed this story over the weekend like I did, here's your morning dose of awesome parenting:

When Mike Mika saw the disappointment on his daughter's face when she realized Pauline wasn't a playable character in Donkey Kong, he felt a call to action. Thankfully Mika happens to be a competent developer, and after a few late-night hours spent hacking the NES version of Nintendo's classic, he accomplished the role reversal his daughter had wished for. Mario was now under Donkey Kong's control, and Pauline was tasked with rescuing the plumber in distress.

(WARNING: As is usually the case, if you want to continue feeling good about humanity, you shouldn't read the comments on The Verge post, as it has been hijacked by dipshit "men's rights" morons making dumbass false equivalency comments about replacing Lara Croft with Larry Croft for the sake of fairness and so on.)

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Humble Bundle 5 Is Out!

Posted by on Wed, Mar 6, 2013 at 1:43 PM

We're big fans of the pay-what-you-want Humble Bundle game packages, and the latest release is a winner. The four games included are Beat Hazard Ultra, a sweet space shooter that uses your music tracks to generate enemies; Dynamite Jack, an adventure romp that mixes stealth with a-splosions; NightSky HD, a neat platformer by the folks behind the legendary Cave Story; and Solar 2, a space trip that's reminiscent of Osmos. They're available for Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS, and even good old Android.

This could be you.
  • This could be you.

You determine both what you pay and who gets the money, splitting it between the developers, the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Child's Play charities, and the Humble folks themselves. If you give more than the average buyer (currently $6.64), you get two bonus games: the subterranean tower defense game Dungeon Defenders (DD: Second Wave for Android) and the maddening twitch-fest Super Hexagon. Soundtracks and Steam codes are part of the package, too.

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

Friday, March 1, 2013

The Con Within a Con: Gaming at ECCC

Posted by on Fri, Mar 1, 2013 at 9:38 PM

Take note, gentle gamers: once again, Emerald City Comicon has a whole nested world of gaming within it—with the return of personalities like Jennifer Hale (the storied voice of FemShep) and Felicia Day (i.e., Felicia Day) and gaming-flavored events like "How to Become as Fit as Your Avatar" and "The Critical Hit Show: A Live Dungeons and Dragons Comedy Experience."

Scheduled programming aside, there's a veritable mini-PAX of casual and organized play, too—just across Pike and down in the basement, open until midnight both Friday and Saturday. You can play not one, not two, but three kinds of D&D (13th Age, D&D Next, and Pathfinder), all available in not-too-long, novice-friendly demo form. Story Games Seattle is also running and teaching games, like Fiasco and Microscope (whose creator was even there today), and Munchkin has a couple tables going, too.

If you're just ducking out of the show floor for a bit, the Game Library is back, where you can borrow a game to play with friends—everything from Bananagrams to RoboRally, Cosmic Encounter, and the crazy Order of the Stick game (which we've never found a way to play in under 13 hours, so okay maybe that's not a good option this weekend). Serious players no doubt already know that there's a whole slew of HeroClix and Magic tournaments going on, too.

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

Nerd Party at Raygun TONIGHT

Posted by on Fri, Mar 1, 2013 at 10:33 AM

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If you're looking for something to do after Comicon tonight you might want to head to Raygun Lounge: NW Gay Geeks and GeekGirlCon present Excelsior! at 8 pm:

Expect some epic Geekiness
-Game Demos
-Beer/Booze
-Free mead
-Tunes by DJ PBear
-Raffling some great prizes as a fundraiser benefiting Lambert House for homeless gay youth
-More details coming soon

We will also have some special guests including:
Tony Akins (Wonder Woman DC 52 artist)
Chris Lange (capitol hillbillies)
More TBA

Sounds like a blast!

Friday, February 22, 2013

Slog Nerd Happy Hour TONIGHT

Posted by on Fri, Feb 22, 2013 at 10:34 AM

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  • MR. HERRIMAN
Like Mary said, the last Friday of the month is here again—and that means beer-and-board/card-game goodness with y'all Slog nerds at Raygun Lounge, starting at 5pm and on into the night. (Originally, we had said 5 to 9, but we have yet to end that early because GAMES.)

We have also somehow snagged yet another special guest this time around: Devin Low (former head developer for Magic) will be teaching his Marvel deck-building game Legendary. We've played the heck out of this game, and it's faithful to the IP while also being really fun (much better than the DC deck-builder, in our experience)—whether you're trying to tune your deck into a fast-playing Spider-Man card-flipper or a wound-chomping Hulk rage machine.

And as if all that weren't enough, Mary will even have some FaerieCon tickets to give away—presumably through some sort of contest involving displays of elven grace.

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Slog Nerd Happy Hour the Third!

Posted by on Tue, Feb 19, 2013 at 2:33 PM

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  • Mr. Herriman
Once again it's time for Slog's monthly game night, this Friday at Raygun Lounge, beginning at 5 pm.

For those who are unfamiliar: on the last Friday of every month the nerds of Slog take over Raygun Lounge. Games are played, beer is drunk, fun times are had. Sometimes we have special guests!

Bring a game to share, or borrow from Raygun's collection! See you Friday!

Monday, February 18, 2013

What Do You Think of the Destiny Preview?

Posted by on Mon, Feb 18, 2013 at 1:05 PM

I don't play console video games or MMORPGs—I simply don't have the time, what with all the books and movies—but the look of Bungie's new project, Destiny, has me drooling. Take a look at this promotional trailer:

The Polygon says:

Players will explore our solar system in Bungie's new first-person shooter, crafting personal stories as they travel Destiny's surreal, fantastic places.

As Guardians, players will battle alien species with exotic names like Sandeaters, War Rhinos and Spider Pirates. They'll wage war with time-traveling robots and evil space zombies. They'll have shared, social experiences that complement a crafted, mythic science-fiction universe.

The production art looks gorgeous, and I love the fact that this is a completely new science-fiction universe that seems to embrace any number of sci-fi concepts and feeds them into one huge storyline. If the actual game is anywhere near the pre-release hype, this looks like the kind of game that could completely ruin my life. But what do you think?

Friday, February 15, 2013

Slog Poll: Who Gets the Free Passes to "The Art of Video Games" Tonight?

Posted by on Fri, Feb 15, 2013 at 11:01 AM

Sakes alive. So we posted yesterday about the great new traveling Smithsonian exhibit at EMP, "The Art of Video Games," and we offered up two free tickets to tonight's Game Nite opening party for "the best story about having an emotional response to a video game."

You guys really brought it, and now we can't decide. Time for a legally binding Slog poll! Go read the finalists' stories and cast your vote by 4pm....

And whether you win or not, the Game Nite party at EMP should be much fun tonight, from 7 to 11, with live gaming on the Skychurch mega-screen and some cool talks, including a keynote from Jeff Strain, one of the godfathers of WoW.

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Art of Video Games at EMP: Free Tickets to Opening Night!

Posted by on Thu, Feb 14, 2013 at 10:04 AM

The Smithsonian's The Art of Video Games opens this Friday at EMP, and it's a visually striking first stab at figuring out where video games fit into the spectrum of creative work. There's a lot packed into a smallish space, including five playable games (The Secret of Monkey Island!), stills and clips from the 80 games on display, and a mesmerizing look at the faces of people immersed in games we call "What the Video Game Saw."

It's not possible to discuss this exhibit without taking a deep breath and mentioning the epic yes-it-is/no-it-isn't trolling that has passed itself off as argument on the subject over the past few years. To accept the legitimacy of this empty debate is an admission of defeat, and we won't dignify it with more than an acknowledgement of its existence.*

This is you. You are art!
  • This is you. You are art!

The selection criteria were eccentric, and involved—not kidding—online voting, but it's hard to argue with the inclusion of any individual title or series in the exhibit. It's sweet to see some of the old gear on display; the ColecoVision controllers instantly Prousted us back to our childhoods. The notable absence of games for smartphones and other mobile devices speaks more to the development cycle of museum exhibits than anything else, most likely. The top-level taxonomy of game types (action, adventure, target, and tactics) posed by curator Chris Melissinos is a good starting point and could launch a few dozen masters' theses.

The EMP is hosting Game Nite this Friday from 7-11pm to celebrate The Art of Video Games, and it sounds like good fun. They'll have live tournament-style gaming broadcast on the Sky Church's alarmingly massive screen, a suite of indie game projects from DigiPen designers, speakers from Valve, Microsoft, and UW, and plenty more. Tickets are $15 for adults or $5 for kids aged 5-12. (Members get in free.) We've got two free passes to give away to the commenter who tells the best story about having an emotional response to a video game. To win, you MUST post your comment by midnight tonight and email std@thestranger.com with your Slog commenter name, so we know how to contact you.

* Though we would like to point out one commonality between video games and art: They both attract staggering numbers of hustlers and grifters.

The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

Monday, February 11, 2013

FTL and the Psychology of Pricing

Posted by on Mon, Feb 11, 2013 at 10:00 AM

FTL is a sweet little indie game that rode industry buzz to blow past its Kickstarter goal about a year ago, then launched last fall. It's sort of a dungeon crawl in space, with bright, clean graphics and a Choose Your Own Adventure-style interface that draws players in quickly. Ship-to-ship combat is a good chunk of the game, but that involves shuttling crew members to repair damage or focus efforts on shields or whatnot, rather than aiming, firing, evading, and other twitchy business. It's fun, it's easy to learn, it's hard to win, and it's compelling enough to play through many, many times.

This is you.
  • This is you.

It's also ten bucks. That stakes out some interesting psychological territory in the space of game prices in between classic one-or-two-buck apps like Angry Birds and $60 box game events like Halo 4, and it provokes a weird discomfort in the mind of the game consumer. It's certainly not the only game in its price range—there are plenty of $10-20 games on Steam, Xbox LIVE and PlayStation Network—but it still seems to transcend the spectrum of established game pricing.

That's a good thing! It ties the price of FTL more directly to its value than to simply what everyone else charges. We may not often think "Do I want to exchange ten dollars in exchange for several hours of challenging fun?" very often, but it's a worthwhile effort now and then. When we see the same old price for apps, box games, and DLC (not to mention books, movies, porn, and music), we tend to pull the trigger without thinking. More diverse pricing may lead to more discerning purchases, and maybe to a Utopia filled with unique little experiences like FTL.


The Stranger Testing Department is Rob Lightner and Paul Hughes.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Drunken Left Hand of Medical Science

Posted by on Thu, Jan 31, 2013 at 4:30 PM

I'm a couple days late to Surgeon Simulator 2013, but I think maybe this is the video game that Duncan Jones should adapt into a movie, not Warcraft. This is the most fun I've had playing a video game in forever.

Are You Excited About Duncan Jones's Warcraft Movie?

Posted by on Thu, Jan 31, 2013 at 11:32 AM

There has never been a good movie based on a video game. Think about that for a second. For twenty years, Hollywood has been trying to adapt video games to film; Wikipedia lists 29 adaptations made in that time. They've never successfully made a good one. And so I am highly nervous about the news that Duncan Jones is going to make a World of Warcraft movie. Jones's first movie, Moon, was a home run. His second movie, Source Code, was not very good at all, although it was at least ambitious and demonstrated his craftsmanship. But this is going to require a lot of work. I mean, look at Badass Digest's description of Warcraft:

World of Warcraft is just the latest iteration of the Warcraft universe, which sees a Tolkien-esque fantasy land known as Azeroth divided in a massive, ongoing war between the Alliance and the Horde. The Alliance is a group of all the boring fantasy races - humans, gnomes, dwarves, lame elves - while the Horde is made up of totally awesome races like Orcs, Trolls, Undead, Blood Elves and minotaur-like Tauren*. Over the years the ever-expanding universe has grown to include multiple planes of existence, outer space, time travel, werewolves, a race of kung-fu pandas and more. Warcraft offers an embarrassment of fantasy riches; it's like every fantasy concept thrown into a blender.

Now, I expect that Jones will manage to keep the story fairly simple, since this is the first Warcraft movie. And you can't doubt Jones's dedication to Warcraft—Badass Digest discovered a previous interview of Jones raving about the idea of a Warcraft movie back in 2010. So there's a possibility that this might work out. But Jones is battling against twenty years of tradition, here, and there's a distinct possibility that his third movie could be his first truly bad movie.

Friday, January 25, 2013

TONIGHT! The Return of Slog Nerd Happy Hour!!

Posted by on Fri, Jan 25, 2013 at 11:20 AM

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  • Mr. Herriman
Don't forget! Slog's super-fun happy hour and board game extravaganza returns TONIGHT to Raygun Lounge! Festivities are from 5 p.m.-9 p.m. and include games, special guests, and a give-away!

This month's special guest is Fire Opal Media game producer Jay Schneider, whose work you may know from the original Duels of the Planeswalkers. Jay is producing the new deck-building game Shadowrun: Crossfire, and he's going to bring out an early version for a sneak preview and some playtesting.

And here's a bonus: Wizards of the Coast provided us with some complimentary copies of last month's featured game, Dungeon!, so the first three winners of Shadowrun: Crossfire will each receive a copy of their very own!

Slog Game Night will return the last Friday of every month, so mark your calendars, nerds.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Take This Game and Shove It

Posted by on Wed, Jan 23, 2013 at 2:45 PM

Like everyone else, I* woke up with a hangover on January 1st. Shortly thereafter, though, a migraine struck from the shadows and crushed my hangover's windpipe, leaving me writhing in the clichés of agony. It would have been a great time for self-reflection, were I not so devoted to the experience of pure suffering, but in the depths of it all, some part of me that was still capable of reason decided to stop playing Marvel: Avengers Alliance.

This is you (well, me).
  • This is you (well, me).

It's a Facebook game that launched last March¬—and as far as Facebook games goes, it's pretty good. It won X-Play's Social Game of the Year, and it's splashy and sometimes well written and fun enough to keep playing for at least a few days or weeks. But! After joyously making Hulk smash and Spider-Man sling webs and dashing Magneto's plans for a while, it became a different kind of experience entirely: It turned into a job.

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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

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Monday, January 21, 2013

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Thursday, January 17, 2013

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Sunday, January 13, 2013

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

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Friday, December 7, 2012

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

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#1reasonwhy

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Saturday, November 10, 2012

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Friday, November 9, 2012

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Thursday, November 1, 2012

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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

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Thursday, October 18, 2012

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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

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Panda Party

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Monday, September 17, 2012

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