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Episode 580: The Best Wrecks of Dr. Stewart's Dream Course Vol. 1

by James Jones, Greg Leahy, Jon Lindemann, and Guillaume Veillette - July 15, 2018, 4:10 pm EDT
Total comments: 9

Available on VHS or DVD for only $9.95, and each month we'll send you even more in-your-face wrecks from the twisted mind of Dr. Stewart*!

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Imagine what the mail-order "hits and misses" VHS industry must be like in the F-ZERO universe?

This week Greg kicks off New Business with a look at Metroidvania indie-darling Hollow Knight. He beat the game after 30 hours, and is very positive about the experience. He's even still finding things to do. Jon continues his pursuit of Tier 100 in Fortnite, telling us all about how the battle royale moneytree uses timed events to generate ongoing player engagement and cold hard cash. Guillaume completed the very stupid story mode in Fire Emblem Warriors; he still loved it. He also spent some more time with Overcooked, which he assures us runs just fine on Switch, before taking a look at Switch puzzle game The Bridge. He describes it as slow, and seems fairly unimpressed. James skipped New Business this week, because he is playing dark games not suitable for polite conversation.

After the break we take a dive back into the mailbag. This week we discuss games that iterate on their ideas, figure out how to keep the Switch momentum going, and remind everyone how bad the F-ZERO cast is. You can tell us what you think the worst F-ZERO character by sending us an email.

This episode was edited by Guillaume Veillette. The "Men of Leisure" theme song was produced exclusively for Radio Free Nintendo by Perry Burkum. Hear more at Perry's SoundCloud. The Radio Free Nintendo logo was produced by Connor Strickland. See more of his work at his website.

This episode's ending music is Ship Soaring Through the Heavens, from Bravely Default: Flying Fairy. It was selected by Greg. Composition by Revo. All rights reserved by SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD.


pokepal148Spencer Johnson, Contributing WriterJuly 15, 2018

The Bridge is a mediocre game I heard great things about.

ClexYoshiJuly 16, 2018

There ARE games that the Dark Souls comparison is apt when indeed a game is very closely aping the structure of From Software's games. I shall list some games where this is accurate for Greg's sake because nobody else on the podcast is willing to actually read between the lines on that.

*NIOH is very much a Koei Tecmo take on Dark Souls in contrast to the sort of character action games that they themselves attempted to innovate on when Itagaki was still running the show there and not shopping Devil's Third around. the combat, the level design, the mechanic of dying and dropping your currency/experience is all there.

*Salt and Sanctuary is very much a transplant of the gothic look and feel, the weighty combat with emphasis on blocks and dodge rolls, and general tone of dick-headedness to the player that I'd argue isn't so much dickheadedness as it is attempting to teach the player through failure.

I can see it a liiitle bit with Hollow Knight bieng this drab but butiful world of spoopy undead medival bugs and what-not, but Hollow Knight doesn't seem to have weapons you find that VASTLY change your playstyle or attacks that are so slow and weighty that you have to commit to them fully."

In all seriousness, I urge Greg to take the dive on Dark Souls Remaster whenever it hits during this nebulous Summer release window. I think the design will hearken to all the parts of castlevania he loves. <3

To Jon's point though, the original Dark Souls features level design that loops back in on itself. you're not nessessarily finding new abilitieds that let you access areas you couldn't before, but you ARE finding keys or opening up doors that are normally one-way doors that loop back to checkpoints, and the world has a very interconnected feel. I feel like the original Arkham Asylum would much better translate to being a metroid game if you squished it into 2D, whereas Dark Souls would be more akin to like... River City Randsom, maybe? I'm tryign to think of old 2D games that have interconnected worlds that you don't nessessarily gain new abilities to unlock parts of the map, but rather just find keys that open doors or maybe the rare occasional item that does such? maybe Metroid 1 where the real only things gating you from exploring everything are the morph ball, bombs, and maybe the high jump boots? I can think of exactly 2 instances where you get any sort of traersal tool in Dark souls and both of those are 100% optional.

EnnerJuly 17, 2018

Good show.

I will not suffer this contempt for F-Zero!

Kidding, but just a little. The knock-off '80s anime, comic books, and Hollywood blockbuster pastiche of F-Zero's world may be a terrible personality and aesthetic to have, but at least it's distinct and something I love to think about. I hope we get another F-Zero game in the future, but I understand the business of why we haven't.

OedoJuly 17, 2018

Game Freak leaves behind features and mechanics as they transition from one Pokemon generation to the next because the games would become incredibly bloated if they didn't. Just using the Gen 6 and Gen 7 examples that were brought up, imagine having a Pokemon and then a Mega Evolution for it, one or more regional variants (i.e. an Alola Form) of it, Mega Evolutions for each its regional variants, and Z-Moves on top of all that. Trying to balance this for casual players who are mostly in it for the main story or for the competitive scene would be ridiculous, and that's before you even talk about layering they new ideas they have for Gen 8 on top of all that again. It sucks that really liked features are often left behind, but starting fresh with each new generation is by far the most sensible approach Game Freak can take for the Pokemon games.

Smash Bros. Ultimate was the most tweeted about game at E3 overall and the release date announcement was the most talked about topic, so I'm skeptical that the fact that it "looks a lot like Smash 4" to some people is affecting the game's ability to generate ton of excitement. It's going to move a lot of Switch units.

Disco StuJuly 17, 2018

To pair with Greg Leahy discussing a meaty Metroidvania, I suggest a husky shiraz

pokepal148Spencer Johnson, Contributing WriterJuly 17, 2018


look at this great F-Zero character design. what a good boy.

He has tubes directly attached to his nipples...

azekeJuly 17, 2018

Quote from: Crimm

He has tubes directly attached to his nipples...

You don't?

Let me tell you about a man who had tubes directly attached to his nipples.

He was young and naive, born into a noble family who presented a threat to a despotic Emperor, and so they were betrayed, left for dead in a hostile place almost devoid of life.

He survived, along with his mother and his deformed sister. He not only learned to survive in this harsh place: he thrived. He won over the natives, led their revolution, and avenged his father's death.

Who was this man?

They called him… Muad'Dib.


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