Give Me A Hot Take About Video Games


UI scaling should be fucking mandatory


Here might be a controversial take…

I like it when people I respect and admire in the games industry/press fuck up and have a bad take. It reminds me that they’re human, and can be dumb sometimes. I feel like a LOT of people in the games talk on Twitter feel like they need to get on a soapbox every day, and it’s refreshing when someone says, “Actually, you should sit down.” Humility is as powerful as confidence, and I see so much absolutism around the talk of games, that I appreciate a buck to the norm.

And yes, I’m talking about him, lol


(For what it’s worth, I am talking in pure generality here because I am not about the subtweet life.)

I wish I could agree with this, but I do think there’s a problem in the Discourse with this. Between a massive spectator culture (which you, I, and most of the people reading this post would fall into) and the impersonality of the common discussion platforms, I think it’s very easy for one mistake to become a permenant stain on someone’s character.

There’s a lot of people who’ve had scorchingly bad takes; many have apologised. However, their names becone synonymous with the original error, which is repeated until it, like worked dough, is molded into something beyond its initial scope. A given apology is discarded (no matter its quality). Bad actors pick up a progressive criticism to use as a cudgel whenever someone crosses them.

‘The Discourse is bad’ is not a video games hot take, but it is the other side to this coin in my view.


I think it’s very easy for one mistake to become a permanent stain on someone’s character.

See, I think that’s the issue. I think we, as a spectator culture in games, do this ourselves by putting our heroes on pedestals, and so when they DO fuck up, it makes it all the more devastating the more respected they are. It kind of falls back to writing. People with flaws are more human than those without them. If we can establish, “Oh, they’re on the right side, but they do think this dumb thing,” And not make it the PRIME part of their personality, I think discourse will be better for it.

I think back to what happened recently with a popular tabletop personality. He got dunked on by a bunch of people for something, and I remember going, “Wait… Why are people going after him?” I looked it up and went, “Huh…”

Not only does that give me something to think about when ingesting their content, but it allows me to come to an even level with someone. I think people treat ‘their brand’ as a sort of pedestal to sit on, and sometimes I feel like it’s used to look down on people who don’t approach something from THAT particular view. It also becomes a learning experience for those who were on the pedestal and have been brought back to earth for a second.

And I feel like it’s also a learning experience for those who are in the right on the take, because they can see their heroes failing, and that makes them realize, “Well, no one is perfect.”

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There are literally billions of “him’s”

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I don’t wanna witch hunt, but he’s popping up in Waypoint and adjacent mentions right now.


I’m really glad I left Carth marooned on an alien planet in his underwear.

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Anthem is set in a world that the gods left unfinished. The tools they left behind are malfunctioning, and there’s an incomprehensible primordial force called the Anthem of Creation that continues to reshape the world in unpredictable, often destructive ways. The player is a member of a group trying to survive in a deadly, ever-changing world, fighting both natural forces and an enemy faction trying to bend the Anthem for their own purposes.

I haven’t played Anthem yet, but everything I’ve read about it has me convinced that its story is a direct allegory for its development process.


The Link’s Awakening Remake art style doesn’t even remotely resemble claymation. Everything is clearly made of tin.

It looks brill and all, but I have no idea where everyone is getting that claymation feel from.


Loot shooters are perfectly representative of the current stage of capitalism because they are vast, inefficient time-sinks that demand multiple millions of dollars to create the same level of engagement and revenue as the addition of a new gadget in Fortnite. Their function in the marketplace is increasingly to steal the market share of other loot shooters for as long as possible, games who themselves struggle to compete with more organically successful genres like battle royale games.

They’re impossiblly inefficient wastes of everyone’s time but the industry is convinced they have to exist because how will they keep making the huge shiny games that pay execs hundreds of thousands of dollars each year?


This makes Borderlands interesting as the founder of the genre because it was built to be a single player or co-op campaign or campaign set distributed through DLC that gets you a lot of bang for the buck. They arguably have too much DLC (there are four full DLC campaigns, five mini campaigns, a battle challenge, and an over-level challenge pack all with new areas and narrative content for 2 alone, for example), but since the series hasn’t been active in the past half decade, it hasn’t had a chance to bother adopting any of the modern industry business practices and actually, probably unintentionally, uses its mechanics to poke fun at the absurdity of capitalism, which is often explored in the stories in game themselves (though there may be some awareness of it after one with how much people in universe complain about vault hunters looting all their valuables in mass).

Player to player interaction is entirely focused on trading and working together to overcome challenges, not the weird MMO crap everyone else is doing to turn games into habit forming chores where you start to wonder what the point of having all these other players around is.


There was probably a thought process in the lead-up to Destiny 1 that these MMO hybrid games would be the new face of the gaming market, and it’s in that environment that you’d see pre-production start on projects like The Division and Anthem.

Now you have a situation where there are these frighteningly overbudgeted shooter games that have to hope for even a semi-active population of players while a wildly experimental genre of small-scale projects command all the attention in gaming.

This would probably be a more profitable medium if studios didn’t have to obey the whims of an executive class who relentlessly chase contemporary trends. Consider the pile of corpses in the MMO, MOBA, and nascent arena game genres.

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Disc 2 of Xenogears is good, though I suspect that’s mostly by accident.


I wonder to what extent we will have another pile of corpses, now that you put it that way.


This is a great take I wholeheartedly endorse.

Unrelated: gacha games are irredeemable, manipulative things that should receive more flack than loot boxes.


So, I love hbomberguy’s political videos, but I gotta drop this take:

Videos like this:


Are better than videos like this:


I know all is fair in criticism, but I am just SO TIRED of snarky dudes HATING games on camera for hours on end, especially ones that are popular to hate. I seriously can’t watch them anymore. I only try to watch people who are EXCITED about games now, who celebrate them and make wonderful vids about how much they enjoy a game or genre.

Seriously, youtube has killed negative criticism for me. The extremity of it is just so exhausting in this new landscape, that it all comes off as noise.


Also I feel like “fallout 3 bad” has been mined thoroughly and what more is there to really say beyond some (good) galaxy brain academic stuff I haven’t even thought up?


YouTube is a howling maw of extreme negativity and it has gotten to the point where even solid, conscientious takedowns of games that somewhat deserve the criticism are off-putting to me.

I’m just so fucking addicted to having stuff on the the background that sounds like my hobby and calms my brain down.


NakeyJakey is good self-care my dude.


He just did a podcast with the Needledrop guy, which puts him in the same company as Carl of Akkad and Sam Hyde, so I’ve cooled on Jakey some.