Episode 436 - Frank Herbert’s Sandstorm

The bucket calls to us, and we must answer. We’re doing a heft dive into the question bucket today, but first! We hit some news stories, like “Does Tom Holland Age?” and “Hey, wtf is up at Bungie?” Patrick is also getting back into VR with Resident Evil 4 VR. After the break, we take a quick look at the trailer for Haunted Chocolatier, the newly announced game from the creator of Stardew Valley, and get into the new home Chocolatier fad that Rob has the skinny on. Then we dive into the question bucket to answer some questions about… well fish, that’s why we’re diving obviously. 

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://play.acast.com/s/vicegamingsnewpodcast/episode436-frankherbert-ssandstorm
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I know nothing of making chocolate, the most chocolatiering I’ve ever done is make a pretty ganache layer for a cake. The most tempering I’ve ever done is with eggs. But I feel like the hard hardcore chocolatiering “from scratch” might mean the same thing as baking “from scratch”.

Like, sure, I’ve made bread before. But still, I bought all the ingredients from the store. You could extend this infinitely by planting your own grain, milling your own flour, buying some cows and churning the butter, running an entire industrial-scale operation to produce your own vegetable oil, whatever. You will need many acres of land and tens of thousands of dollars in vertical integration start-up money before your bread is truly “home-made”. Very very few bakers are doing that, I imagine.


I imagine that even places that aren’t just remelting bars are actually still buying end products like nibs and grinding them as opposed to roasting and grinding out whole beans.

If you want to combine VR with Stalktober there’s a game called Into The Radius which is somewhat Stalker-like.

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I can’t believe none of the mentioned what is objectively the greatest opening theme of a tv show ever:


an all time great TV opener: the muppet show

Regarding Patrick’s comment about how games that are Epic exclusives basically not being on PC: I feel that! I’ve found it hard to play games using the Epic launcher, or even remember that I have games on there that I haven’t played yet. It’s not even like a principled stance or anything, Valve sucks just as much as Epic does! The UI for both the store and the library is clunky, without any real way to group things in a way that is useful. I love the shelves in Steam, because I can easily track my backlog, and prioritize it. Epic is just a wall of games. It’s also really bad at tracking hour counts, which is a bummer because I like to keep track of that! At this point, if something comes out on Epic, even if it’s something I’d really like to play, I just wait the year or so for it to come out on Steam.

As far as TV OPs go, there’s no beating Paranoia Agent’s. That song transcends best OP song to just one of the best songs ever recorded:


Oh no, every time someone brings up feeling like multiple Launchers/storefronts make games feel like I must promote Playnite. It is a game launcher that essentially allows you to combine your libraries from everywhere else on your computer. It has changed my view of my backlog as well as it making it seemingly possible to play all the games I’ve accumulated over the years. It’s plugin hour count is based on launching from Playnite so it doesn’t do an elite job of tracking if you start from Steam or whatever but I can then take that data and easily post to How Long To Beat It.Through that plugin you can have games tagged which will allow you to sort by HLTB games that last 0-5 hours, 6-10, etc.

It isn’t a storefront though, granted I used IsThereAnyDeal for most of my game deal shopping. So maybe that makes the whole point of it is on Epic it might as well not exist still very much the case, but I think this eliminates that step of ever having to manually open Epic after purchasing the game. A real barrier in my book.

There are a ton of different “themes” that allow you to tweak how your Playnite looks as well as a bunch of extensions that add some rad functionality.


I also use Playnite. Absolutely amazing tool that has taken much of the annoyance out of PC gaming in this era of launcher-itis. I have the How long to beat plugin setup, and I often just sort my backlog by how many hours a game takes to play. That’s something none of the launchers or consoles come close to allowing and it’s great.


OK, yesterday night i was extremely high and sent an email to the pod basically saying the below, and I’m still slightly in awe (and maybe still slightly high) so wanted to share my thoughts here:

It’s amazing and crazy how the idea of recursion kept coming up throughout the whole episode. Consider:

  1. First, Rob’s complaints about the recursion of Uncharted the Movie being an adaptation of Uncharted the Game series which already is essentially an adaptation of the Indiana Jones movies (Indiana Jones)
  2. Then, consider that earlier in the audio — in the promo for the upcoming anniversary stream — Rob had already referenced The Last Five Years, a movie whose structure is recursive (the end is the beginning which is the end)
  3. And THEN consider that this upfront promo for the upcoming anniversary stream was recorded at the END of the podcast, when Cado actually remembers there’s an anniversary stream and Patrick says “let’s do the promo and copy and paste it at the top of the recording!”
  4. And then, finally, the post-pod philosophy hats convo seguing into the podcast introductions after the promo.

Just a great ep all around also. Great stuff!!


A couple of thoughts about his episode.

The Tony Chocolonely bars always remind me of the shutupmikeginn ‘Not Involved in Human Trafficking shirt’ tweet. I don’t know much else about the brand itself, but I’m glad that they are vocal about the issues with how chocolate is sourced. Coffee is the other industry that I think has a lot of issues, most of which are obscured behind a legalistic debate over terminology and branding.

As for TV OPs, I go in one of two directions. Either there is a song that slaps incredibly hard or the intro is incredibly short and unobtrusive. For the first category, I second Paranoia Agent and want to add Ghost in the Shell Stand Alone Complex and Girls’ Last Tour. Probably would also give the edge to Paranoia Agent which has just absolutely incredible images that continually reinforce the themes of that show. For the latter category, I have to go with something like LOST which gets in and out in like 7 seconds, a blessing for when you are attempting to rewatch all of a show.

EDIT: Having now listened to the episode, I’m glad Patrick also brought up Lost

If you’re like me and been rewatching an episode here and there of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers you understand that you do not skip that opening because it still slaps years later

Hey, thanks for this recommendation (and @epigraph for the second endorsement), I’d never heard of this! I previously tried GOG Galaxy, but that has its own UI issues (also, you know, the GOG baggage). I’ve started importing my library. Darkest Dungeon 2 looks great, and maybe this will work to keep it as my backup game while I’m playing other stuff.

Baccano is an anime with a super fun opening. Re-introducing the characters every episode was a great idea for an ensemble cast whose stories are told out-of-sequence. But I also just love a jazzy intro!


I know it’s been well agreed that the internet isn’t ready to talk about The Prisoner but The Prisoner had both a great intro and outro.


If you ever want to get the Waypoint Discord’s anime channel going for a few hours just ask about openings. Anyways… Bleach had multiple bangers. The show usually wasn’t half as cool as its openings.

Recently liked the Jujutsu Kaisen openings even if they (like most things) were overshadowed by its first ending.

Anime openings and endings for a long time now have been hyper produced, record label funded things that now often end up having the best available staff working on them.


First things that came to mind in the show OP discussion was Doom Patrol

Which I listen to every week, a very haunting and catchy tune with some cool impressionistic visuals
And Keep Your Hands Off Eizouken!

Ditto never skipped it every week: High energy, fun, catchy.

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The Attack on Titan opening music (from the first series) came on randomly in the car during this morning’s commute. It definitely gets you going.


I saw the song edited to bits from Disney’s Hercules and it’s mega.

Pretty obvious, but I like how The Wire opens each season with a different version of the Tom Waits song. Conveying the central theme of ‘the more things change - the more they stay the same’. The outro music is always great too - just low key melancholy. Sometimes the worst thing can happen and then the outro kicks in. Just another day in Baltimore. Things disintegrating.

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It might go off the rails narratively but the S4 opening of AoT is also great, imo.

That first season of Attack on Titan happened while I was in high school and the theme was inescapable. Kids just singing it in the hall and watching all kind of parody material. First time in my life that anime felt like a cool, mainstream thing where I was.