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    Default Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)



    Ah Psychonauts. Released in 2005, it's probably the most famous work done by Tim Schafer and his company Double Fine. And not without good reason, or at least so I've been told. While it is a contemporary of games I have played (both personally and as LPs) it's one that completely bypassed me, so I have like zero nostalgia for it. But it's a cult classic that didn't sell well at the initial time of release, so I can see why that may of happened. At any rate, this is going to be interesting an LP (to me at least) because of what all happened the first time I played this. We'll get into that story later, however. I'm playing the PC version, which has recently (as in twoish years ago maybe?) been updated to have ye olde achievements and the like, and I'll be doing my best to complete this game 100%, with those in mind. Do note I am saying "try" here.

    As always, Monday and Friday updates are how we're doin' things here, videos typically 25ish minutes long. Don't spoil stuff, play nice, all that fun stuff. Without further adieu, lets get this show on the road.


    Zodi Plays: Psychonauts [1] Basic Braining

    Video Length: 28:32

    We open with a more than literal stump speech by a walking potato man who we'll learn to know as Coach Oleander, the head honcho of the Whispering Rock Summer Camp that is the game's setting. In a weird sort of way, this game starts in media res, since our protagonist, Razputin, has already infiltrated the campground so he can learn to master his latent psychic abilities and become a Psychonaut. Mostly as an act of rebellion against his parents and boredom from living in the circus. This is of course very very illegal, but Raz's mental capabilities are second to none and it seems that they're probably going to be letting Raz participate even though they all say, constantly, that he cannot. Sweet!

    After choosing a bunk (which acts as a profile for your saves, naturally) we begin the game proper, being funneled towards the first level, Coach Oleander's battlefield of a mindscape. On our way there we encounter a bunch of other campground friends, some of whom are more friendly then others, and all of which have a...distinctly unsettling look to them. I'll be honest, I'm not the biggest fan of this game's art style, it's offputting as heck and generally not at any point enjoyable to look at. I get it's an art style thing, I do, but Raz is the only character who even looks remotely human shaped. At any rate, after trying (and failing) to assist in squirrel murder and meeting the camp bully (and his main victim aside from us) it's time to actually get this thing started!

    I'll be doing a more complete look into the psyche of the minds we get into after we complete the story stuff in them, but for now I can say that Oleander's mind is definitely not my favorite by a long shot. While there are the occasional sign that it's a mental world and not otherwise, it's probably the most mundane of the levels we'll be exploring. For the most part, anyway. That's honestly okay since this IS a mental construct for us to train in, but I'd of liked them to start a little stronger on the idea that since this is a mental mind scape anything can happen. As far as actually playing it goes, this level is occasionally FAR too dark to navigate, but it works as far as tutorial levels go. We learn about all the collectables we'll have to deal with (for the most part, I don't beat this level in this video) and we learn the basics of movement. You run and jump and can double jump, and we've got poles to swing on and specific walls you can climb on and such. The mechanics are pretty standard for this sort of collectathon platformer game, and that's fine! Raz can defend himself with psychic slaps and a ground pound move, and that's it for offensive actions at the moment. All in all, this game plays...decently? The jumps feel a bit shallower than they probably are, and everything just has a slight layer of jank to it that I can't really describe. It plays well enough though, ignoring that sometimes the jump button doesn't jump (especially with regards to the pole swinging).

    Of course, no collectathon platformer wouldn't be complete without things to collect, and that's where this game...not so much excels as it does shoot for the stars. First, the most basic collectable in the various mental worlds we'll go into; Figments of Imagination! These 2D, glowing pieces of mental paper represent various imagining from the person we're inside of, and collecting 100 points worth of them (they're not a strictly 1 to 1 ratio of collection to point) gives us a rank up on our psi-cadet rank (effectively just our level, like in any old RPG). The big problem with Figments are they can just kinda float around however, which makes collecting them a MASSIVE pain. And like, I do mean MASSIVE, if I have ANY difficulty in getting 100% clear on this game it'll be from this stuff. One up on the list of collectables in terms of importance are the Emotional Baggage, crying bags of various shape and size that we need to sort out by finding their tag and bringing it to the respective bag. Getting all the bags unlocks Primal Memories, which is to say concept art, of the world and the person we're inside. I feel like the Baggage is ever so slightly a missed opportunity, in that each level has the same five bags. I feel like in a more modern version of this game, the bags would be unique for each mind. It's not a big deal, and I get why they couldn't do this, but I'd like them to consider that for the sequel they're working on right now.

    Let's step away from the mindscape for a second to talk about the second least important collectable in the game, and the only collectable that appears in the real world only. While they're first presented to you as if they're as important as say, Mario's Power Stars, the Psi-Cores and the playing cards that make them up are not actually all that important. They just give you a bunch of points for your psi-cadet rating. I'm not a big fan of them, but they're fine. The ACTUAL worst collectable however are the Arrowheads. Collectable in both meat and mind, arrowheads are this game's form of currency and they're awful and I hate them. I'll get into them in mooore detail later, because right now we don't have any context for them, but just keep that in the back of your mind. But enough negativity, lets talk about the best collectable in the game, and probably my favorite part of it, the Memory Vaults!

    The Memory Vaults are, as you expected, vaults inside the minds of who we're in currently. Give em a smack and we get access to one of the level's memories, in black and white film reel style. Completely silent, no dialogue (spoken or otherwise) and full of actual, genuinely good framing. These memories are the best this game has to offer in terms of presentation, and I feel like a lot of people probably praise the game solely because of how successful these are at presenting the idea of "exploring the mind of another person". But that's just me.

    Anyway, all that said and done, we end our episode off talking to one of the camp friends, Vernon. He's...certainly a character. I have...a love-hate relationship with this game's style of comedy, and I'll leave it to you guys to decide if any of this stuff is actually funny or not. At any rate, I hope you all enjoyed, this first update is kinda muddled since I've got a lot to say about the game's set up and mechanics. See you all next time for more of this!

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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Haven't played the game before. Seen lots of people talking about it, of course. Most recent wasn't very positive. Never watched an LP of it, will be good to see.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    New LP. This'll be interesting, because I know nada about this game. I've heard of it, but not about it.

    Wouldn't be a Zodi LP if everything went perfectly smoothly, right?

    Well, interesting cutscene start.

    Huh. That is a neat little control trick.

    Yeah, man, this is a really really darkly lit world. Ugh. Hopefully it brightens up later in the game.

    I... dunno if this game puts its best foot forwards at the beginning. But, we'll see.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    The game is always blown as being this incredible masterpiece. Let's see how it holds up. So far it looks like the PS 2 counterpart to collect-a-thons like Banjo Kazooie or Super Mario 64.

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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Quote Originally Posted by Sporeegg View Post
    The game is always blown as being this incredible masterpiece. Let's see how it holds up. So far it looks like the PS 2 counterpart to collect-a-thons like Banjo Kazooie or Super Mario 64.
    It is, except it should be compared to it's actual contemporaries instead of those one generation behind it. Sly Cooper and Super Mario Sunshine (both of which I've LPed, naturally).

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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Ah psychonauts...

    I'll say this, befre designing his game, Tim Shaefer was known or designing adventur games t Lucas Arts. and itshows. The game while being a patformer, has a ot of comedic lines, scens little easter eggs and sidethngs.. that you are very likely to miss on you first playthrough.

    So here's a world of advice for those who would liketo pick it up and play for the first time: If you want to profit of this game humour and attntin to detail fully, I recomend aboding it a lot like ad adenture game, at least in the first half of the game, explore around the camp between each a lot and do not rush to each new level and objectives, try talking to about eveyone, showing objects, usin powers an genraly screw around.

    I mean it's not an obligation by any means but is really in it's little detals that the game shines. That and it's level design.

    As of the collectables.
    Psycards and core are acturay pretty nice to get levels ad so uprades erly. Some of the powers ulocked early can make things so much easier.

    Arrowheads aren't to bad if you get the detector as early as yu can (which I heavily recomend) and go hunting for deep caches during he day, otherwise yeah you'll have to do it at night and it gets annoyingand painful fast.
    Last edited by smuchmuch; 2018-04-21 at 05:06 PM.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    It seems like I had a similar experience to you of this game. I'd heard it praised a lot over the years, picked it up for pennies in a Steam sale a couple of years ago, but the tone and art style weren't really what I'd expected and I found them a little off-putting. I also had persistent problems with the audio stuttering during dialogue and tried various fixes that didn't work. I played through the tutorial section and very early bits, but then the bugs got more frequent so I ended up bouncing right off the game and never went back. I'll see how this thread goes and may give it another shot.

    From the video you've posted, it looks like there were maybe a few small stutters in the dialogue with Dogen, but nothing major so far. Have you had any issues with this and/or applied any fixes?
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Quote Originally Posted by Ebon_Drake View Post
    It seems like I had a similar experience to you of this game. I'd heard it praised a lot over the years, picked it up for pennies in a Steam sale a couple of years ago, but the tone and art style weren't really what I'd expected and I found them a little off-putting. I also had persistent problems with the audio stuttering during dialogue and tried various fixes that didn't work. I played through the tutorial section and very early bits, but then the bugs got more frequent so I ended up bouncing right off the game and never went back. I'll see how this thread goes and may give it another shot.

    From the video you've posted, it looks like there were maybe a few small stutters in the dialogue with Dogen, but nothing major so far. Have you had any issues with this and/or applied any fixes?
    Nope, there's been no problems. Any issues like with Dogen is just a case of that just being how the game is.

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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    And then we started another Psychonauts video.

    Zodi Plays: Psychonauts [2] A Button


    Video Length: 24:56

    In this episode, we get through the rest of Coach Oleander's mind. Unfortunately for everyone involved we open with meeting Crystal and Clem, two peppy excitable cheersquad members who have really annoying voices, who cheer you on as you do a punch minigame to progress. Oleander promises us a reward for clearing it as well as going forward, and the reward is blowing up the two children and I feel like this is actually a decent joke. Not worth it though, but a decent joke none the less. This episode also features some of the more...less than stellar platforming mechanics the game has to offer. Mostly in that sometimes the A button doesn't register if you try jumping too quickly, and sometimes it will register as hitting the B button (or something. Still not really sure why sometimes I just randomly fall off ledges and ropes. I have good button control and I don't fatfinger them). The worst of this culminates in the trapeze section, but I managed to work it out fairly easily. Also worth noting is the pole swinging part, which has a ton of scary looking flame jets...none of which can actually hit you, and that feels like an oversight? I don't know, it's weird.

    After getting through all that, plus a really disorienting spinning room of spikes challenge (it's hard to explain in words) we reach the end of Oleander's little obstacle course...only to find that no one is there. There is a little room off to the side though, which we gladly go to explore. It gets Oleander's attention, and he apologizes for being late and rewards us with our first Merit badge! With that done, Sasha Nein shows up and more or less asks us to go to his secret lab for his own personal training course. He gives us a button as a sort of hint on where his secret lab is, and we get to see what the actual bulk of this game will probably end up being: point and click adventure game style puzzles! I'm going to go out and say I am not a big fan of those sorts of games, but these are simple enough to be fine. For one, Sasha gives a pretty good hint as to where to go. For two, Razz can show the button to everyone in the game and they'll pretty much always just spell it right out for him. So our next destination is the Geodesic Isolation Chamber. But first we explore this part of the camp a bit, showing off a huge log that tells the history of the camp, plus some corkboard notes (we'll see more of these later). We also start the Scavenger Hunt, another series of collectables that we'll be working on getting later. All in all, a pretty decent episode if I do say so myself. Hope you all enjoyed, and I'll see you guys next time. But...we're not done writing today, at least.

    Once we beat a level, I'm going to go over the level and talk about it, from a mental point of view. What does it tell us about the character, what does it all mean, and all that fun stuff. We don't have all the memory vaults for Oleander, which is a little troublesome, but it should be fine. So lets talk shop about the mind. Oleander's mindscape is a battlefield, and it's important to keep in mind that this is all very clearly set up for the students to get through and is not a perfect representation of his thoughts. That said, even Oleander can't keep everything controlled. This is most expressed in the Figments, showing all manner of horrible mutilation of people, weapons, bombs, and horrifying vaguely germanic soldiers representing what they felt like, if not what they actually where. A lot of people, from what I've read, take this and Oleander's character design and consider it a sign that he fought on that side of things and that's really really stupid? Like this is a testing ground, he trains by appearing as your enemy, so he dresses up sort of like them to make the mental image of him being your enemy stronger. The one memory vault we did find shows pretty clearly he fought on the other side, and was quite the soldier. And also quite a bit taller than he is now. It's pretty clear from at least this memory at least (we'll see more in the second one once we can actually get it) that he went in guns blazing, and left with more metal on his chest than his friends who got cut down by gunfire. Oleander is a rude, crass, and overall potato of a man, but it's all an act to teach these students how to handle the harsh reality of being a psychic soldier. It's a little...creepy when you consider the fact that this summer camp is effectively a child soldier training facility, but I'm sure it's not as bad as it appears, just like our buddy Coach here.

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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Honestly, not a big fan of this particular game. Unlike Banjo Kazooie, which was a game I actually enjoyed, this game has worse mechanics, edgier worldview, and overall a worse experience. And it has aged even worse than Banjo Kazooie, which is saying something.

    Sorry, Zodi. I tried, but the game is just painfully bad. I'll catch up with ya next game.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    ...I'm glad you didn't listen until the end of that speech. Painfully-long dragged out 'jokes'... don't particularly fall into funny for me.

    And now snow.

    Man, a good number of the voices here just grate on me. It's the same kinda problem I had with Yooka-Laylee, I think it was.

    ...there is literally no penalty for hitting the non-targets? That doesn't seem right.

    Those memories are pretty neat. And, arguably, the stylized characters work better in there than elsewhere. At least, uh, so far.

    I imagine it hit you because it was able to go 'faster' because of the diminishing angle? I dunno, probably based on how they coded the gun. Or else you were just unlucky.

    Now, see, that's a design choice I like. Blocked door. One thing to interact with. Eventually you'll try and climb the flagpole if only while trying to get back to where you came from.

    Upper body strength is needed in the mind?

    I do like how it shows "yep, mental world need not be concerned with physics", since... there hasn't been too much of it yet. But, yeah, maneuvering it looks janky.

    Great. Now we're a Trainer, uh, Psychonaut. Now go collect 8 badges! (I assume.)

    He does realize that directly asking where a secret lab is probably isn't the best course of action, right?

    I'm still not really feeling this game, but, it might pick up later. Hopefully.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Quote Originally Posted by LaZodiac View Post
    Nope, there's been no problems. Any issues like with Dogen is just a case of that just being how the game is.
    Dang, I was really hoping you'd have a pro tip for me.

    You've now played as far as I managed in the game, so I'm interested to see what happens next. I have tried running it again and the problem wasn't quite as bad as I remember so I might give it another chance.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Quote Originally Posted by smuchmuch View Post
    Ah psychonauts...

    I'll say this, befre designing his game, Tim Shaefer was known or designing adventur games t Lucas Arts. and itshows. The game while being a patformer, has a ot of comedic lines, scens little easter eggs and sidethngs.. that you are very likely to miss on you first playthrough.

    So here's a world of advice for those who would liketo pick it up and play for the first time: If you want to profit of this game humour and attntin to detail fully, I recomend aboding it a lot like ad adenture game, at least in the first half of the game, explore around the camp between each a lot and do not rush to each new level and objectives, try talking to about eveyone, showing objects, usin powers an genraly screw around.
    It even makes sense to a certain extent. After all, you are at a summer camp.

    Quote Originally Posted by smuchmuch View Post
    As of the collectables.
    Psycards and core are acturay pretty nice to get levels ad so uprades erly. Some of the powers ulocked early can make things so much easier.

    Arrowheads aren't to bad if you get the detector as early as yu can (which I heavily recomend) and go hunting for deep caches during he day, otherwise yeah you'll have to do it at night and it gets annoyingand painful fast.
    Agreed. As annoying as it is that you have to do that in the first place.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Abut the skiped lines, th game is pretty twitchy with dilogue, pressing any buttong while a Pc is going n anmatio tend to skipp he whole line

    The fragment collecting does get a lot easier when you unlock certain powers later, thankfuly.

    I don't remember having the problems you have with the jumping buton personaly. I mean Psychonaut is not the bst platormer by far but controls were never an issue and pretty tight for me. Googling it, others people seem to repport he same issue, other not. Odd.
    I do wonder if maybe this has something to do with using a controller ?

    If this persist there's certain sections of the game that will be... very painful, tho.

    Weird that yo can't unequip items too,becaue I'm sure Ididnt have that issue on my playthrouhs. Normaly it's te B button to unequip on a controler, I beleive

    It's a little...creepy when you consider the fact that this summer camp is effectively a child soldier training facility, but I'm sure it's not as bad as it appears, just like our buddy Coach here.
    To be fair, the actualy going up to the 'soldier' (secret agent) thing is fully voluntary and implied to hapen with the parent agreement. .. ...Which alway kind of made me wonder what kind of society the people of this world leave in. Dunno maybe the sequel or the Vr game will tell a little more about the world. Probably not tho the whole thingi better no taken too serously and withou thinkng too hard about it.

    Also as can be seen from Phoebe the pyromaniac and Dogen 'ony made a head explode once. sortakinda" , untrained psyhic kids can be pretty dangerous

    ...there is literally no penalty for hitting the non-targets? That doesn't seem right.
    Only when you play the 'first' (and only mandatory for plot advancement) level of the mingame.

    After that you can play the minigame with two increasing difficulty levels for some arrowheads as reward? Thetarget augment by ten points for each level and there's a penaltyof -1 point for a missed 'bad' target and -2 for an 'innocent' green target destroyed.

    Upper body strength is needed in the mind?
    You never heard of muscle memory ?
    (...what ?... That would be totaly the kind of pun this game would go with ifthey had wanted to justify it. It doesn't but ya just know it would.)

    Great. Now we're a Trainer, uh, Psychonaut. Now go collect 8 badges! (I assume.)
    Funnily enough, , there is eight psychic powers total you can get in this game (not counting the puching, double jump and dive bomb you get from the start) Five are unlocked during the game, three by leveling up.

    Then there's upgrades for each powers that you get every few levels, hence why leveling early by gettng psy cores and the scavenger hunt make things sooo much easier.

    And four more badges that you just get as the game progress, the basic braining is the first one.
    Last edited by smuchmuch; 2018-04-24 at 11:05 PM.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    How's about some more of this.

    Zodi Plays: Psychonauts [3] The Campground

    Video Length: 22:20

    In this episode, we bumble around talking to most of the other campers, showing them Sasha's shiny button and otherwise talking to them to get a feel for how they are. As it turns out most of them are jerks, and some of them are KIND OF WEIRD. In the future, when I go get around to clearing out each area, I'll be doing a lot of editing so it doesn't take forever, but for this time I'll let it linger a bit so you can get a feel for how the campground is. It's surprisingly confusing if you let your mind wander a bit, and is fairly tricky to navigate. The signs are also...less than helpful, as they're not directly outside the exit to the next location, they're just sort of vaguely pointing in that direction. This is a bit unclear.

    Most importantly this episode, we find the Camp Lodge store, in which we finally find the use for Arrowheads. And I can go over the first major reason why they're terrible. First off, look at those prices! The cheapest thing here is 10 arrowheads which, lets be fair, that's fine. It's also a fairly vital pick up, in that it lets us take those playing cards and make a Challenge Marker out of it. Pretty okay! Then we have the Dream Fluff, a fairly useless healing item that costs FIFTY arrowheads. That's kind of absurd, and we're only going to buy one of these, exactly once. We've also got the PSI Colorizer, which I'll be picking up at some point maybe, which costs 250 (which is an absurd price given how useless it is). Then, for 400 arrowheads, we can buy...a passive ability that I'm not sure is even permanently on, because the game provides almost no information on how it works, the Magnet merit badge! This seems like a fairly vital thing given how bouncy the pick ups can be, and if it works the way other psychic powers do and must be EQUIPPED, than it's basically hot trash.

    The most important thing here however is the Cobweb Duster, an 800 arrowhead investment that is REQUIRED to beat the game, it lets you suck up those mental cobwebs inside peoples heads. We will be getting this at a later date and, god willing, I won't have to show you the OTHER half of why the arrowheads are so bloody terrible. Fingers crossed. The big problem with this of course is that, you PICK UP ARROWHEADS ONCE AT A TIME. Now, for 50 Arrowheads we can "solve" this problem by buying the Dowsing Rod. This of course comes with a slight caveat. One, there are actually a limited amount of the big stores of Arrowheads, so once you run em out they're gone for good. Two, getting them is actually kind of annoying and finicky, though we'll talk more about that later. Third, even when you GET a deep deposit of Arrowhead, it's just like 10ish? I'll admit I can't find any documentation on how many arrowheads you get and I don't actually remember how many it gives you, but I know it gives you a number that feels wrong. This may just be me projecting my bad experience with this entire terrible garbage overpriced mechanic, however, and if all goes well we won't have to worry about it! Once we're past a certain point I'll actually explain what the deal is. Those of you who know the game know what this is, most likely.

    After that we make our way to the Geodesic Isolation Chamber, save Maloof (who's been forced into it by Bobby) and gain access to Sasha's lab! He tells us we're going to be doing some Brain Tumbler experiments, but that'll have to wait until Next Time! I hope you all enjoyed, I'll see you guys there.

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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    If memory serves, mental magnet is one of the four badges that appear inthe journal, aka it's ot cnsidered a powera, it's a pasive upgrade that's alway active once bought.

    Normaly there's more than enough arowheads in the deep caches to buy the duster and magnet and have some spare for a few cores. It does become more delicate if you need to start buying fluffs or the useless pst clor thing, tho

    Up to you if you want to play this compeltly blind or make your life easier but there is a map of deep arowheads caches locations
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Quote Originally Posted by smuchmuch View Post
    If memory serves, mental magnet is one of the four badges that appear inthe journal, aka it's ot cnsidered a powera, it's a pasive upgrade that's alway active once bought.

    Normaly there's more than enough arowheads in the deep caches to buy the duster and magnet and have some spare for a few cores. It does become more delicate if you need to start buying fluffs or the useless pst clor thing, tho

    Up to you if you want to play this compeltly blind or make your life easier but there is a map of deep arowheads caches locations
    I appreciate this, but I'm not playing this blind. I'll go more into what happened the last time I played this later

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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    I guess the joke is "Oh, Raz thinks they're nice, but then look, they're working/playing around with poison." That's what I got of it, at least.

    Man... that camp has a lot of collectables strewn around, with a good amount of distance from point A to B. I can see how one could get lost.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Quote Originally Posted by smuchmuch View Post
    Weird that yo can't unequip items too,becaue I'm sure Ididnt have that issue on my playthrouhs. Normaly it's te B button to unequip on a controler, I beleive
    I accidentally discovered it by hitting x when I meant to hit z to go into first person view myself.

    Quote Originally Posted by smuchmuch View Post
    To be fair, the actualy going up to the 'soldier' (secret agent) thing is fully voluntary and implied to hapen with the parent agreement. .. ...Which alway kind of made me wonder what kind of society the people of this world leave in. Dunno maybe the sequel or the Vr game will tell a little more about the world. Probably not tho the whole thingi better no taken too serously and withou thinkng too hard about it.

    Also as can be seen from Phoebe the pyromaniac and Dogen 'ony made a head explode once. sortakinda" , untrained psyhic kids can be pretty dangerous
    And let's not even get started on the ones that become zombie bullies before anyone can get to them.

    Quote Originally Posted by smuchmuch View Post
    You never heard of muscle memory ?
    (...what ?... That would be totaly the kind of pun this game would go with ifthey had wanted to justify it. It doesn't but ya just know it would.)
    I think it's more about mental agility and how you need to be familiar with moving around in unusual ways in order to traverse the mental hellscapes of your enemies, allies, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by smuchmuch View Post
    Funnily enough, , there is eight psychic powers total you can get in this game (not counting the puching, double jump and dive bomb you get from the start) Five are unlocked during the game, three by leveling up.

    Then there's upgrades for each powers that you get every few levels, hence why leveling early by gettng psy cores and the scavenger hunt make things sooo much easier.

    And four more badges that you just get as the game progress, the basic braining is the first one.
    There's at least one other badge you can acquire in another way as well, but I don't want to give away more than that right now.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Quote Originally Posted by LaZodiac View Post
    How's about some more of this.

    Zodi Plays: Psychonauts [3] The Campground
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    Video Length: 22:20

    In this episode, we bumble around talking to most of the other campers, showing them Sasha's shiny button and otherwise talking to them to get a feel for how they are. As it turns out most of them are jerks, and some of them are KIND OF WEIRD. In the future, when I go get around to clearing out each area, I'll be doing a lot of editing so it doesn't take forever, but for this time I'll let it linger a bit so you can get a feel for how the campground is. It's surprisingly confusing if you let your mind wander a bit, and is fairly tricky to navigate. The signs are also...less than helpful, as they're not directly outside the exit to the next location, they're just sort of vaguely pointing in that direction. This is a bit unclear.

    Most importantly this episode, we find the Camp Lodge store, in which we finally find the use for Arrowheads. And I can go over the first major reason why they're terrible. First off, look at those prices! The cheapest thing here is 10 arrowheads which, lets be fair, that's fine. It's also a fairly vital pick up, in that it lets us take those playing cards and make a Challenge Marker out of it. Pretty okay! Then we have the Dream Fluff, a fairly useless healing item that costs FIFTY arrowheads. That's kind of absurd, and we're only going to buy one of these, exactly once. We've also got the PSI Colorizer, which I'll be picking up at some point maybe, which costs 250 (which is an absurd price given how useless it is). Then, for 400 arrowheads, we can buy...a passive ability that I'm not sure is even permanently on, because the game provides almost no information on how it works, the Magnet merit badge! This seems like a fairly vital thing given how bouncy the pick ups can be, and if it works the way other psychic powers do and must be EQUIPPED, than it's basically hot trash.

    The most important thing here however is the Cobweb Duster, an 800 arrowhead investment that is REQUIRED to beat the game, it lets you suck up those mental cobwebs inside peoples heads. We will be getting this at a later date and, god willing, I won't have to show you the OTHER half of why the arrowheads are so bloody terrible. Fingers crossed. The big problem with this of course is that, you PICK UP ARROWHEADS ONCE AT A TIME. Now, for 50 Arrowheads we can "solve" this problem by buying the Dowsing Rod. This of course comes with a slight caveat. One, there are actually a limited amount of the big stores of Arrowheads, so once you run em out they're gone for good. Two, getting them is actually kind of annoying and finicky, though we'll talk more about that later. Third, even when you GET a deep deposit of Arrowhead, it's just like 10ish? I'll admit I can't find any documentation on how many arrowheads you get and I don't actually remember how many it gives you, but I know it gives you a number that feels wrong. This may just be me projecting my bad experience with this entire terrible garbage overpriced mechanic, however, and if all goes well we won't have to worry about it! Once we're past a certain point I'll actually explain what the deal is. Those of you who know the game know what this is, most likely.
    As a head's up for anyone playing through the game for the first time, don't load up heavily on Psi Cores, as the game will let you buy far more than you could ever actually use. Also, whenever you can actually make use of them, you can also go and buy some more, since unless you're deliberately holding onto Psi Cards until right before the endgame, you're only going to need maybe 3-4 of them at once, usually more like 1-2.

    The Magnet Merit Badge is actually pretty nice. I spent 5 minutes using the dowsing rod and got it on a whim after I started playing again and I was collecting a significantly greater amount of the health and ammo drops than I was before. It's especially useful for collecting drops that fall off of ledges because with the Magnetizer, they'll float up and down vertically to get to you, rather than only being able to really travel horizontally.

    And, yes, the cobweb duster is very required, but I believe you have 3-4 mindscapes before you actually need it, at least. That said, it's better to do as much collecting early on as possible. Largely because Night Time makes visibility extremely poor and the cougars can be annoying if you run into one while platforming.

    IME the deep core deposits of arrowheads respawn when quitting and exiting the game and sometimes even when exiting a screen and coming back. The dowser's collection ability could definitely have been better implemented though, no arguments there.
    Last edited by Coidzor; 2018-04-27 at 03:41 PM.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    I guess the joke is "Oh, Raz thinks they're nice, but then look, they're working/playing around with poison." That's what I got of it, at least.
    Sort off. There's another easily missable scene like that with these twos that make it a little more clear what it's about. But like most of the strange idiosyncracyesand obvious isses of the campe.. it's never explored or delved in to the game, which given the theme of sad game, seems like a weird missed opportunies.
    (I assume that like with so many Tim Shaefer gmes there was plans for this me to be much bigger at first but when they went overtime and over budget (as they did) they obbled together somthing very quickly or the ending. In fact i'm pretty sure it was te case due to a couple of thins 'llpoint when we come to it.)

    I appreciate this, but I'm not playing this blind. I'll go more into what happened the last time I played this later
    (Sorry, I didn't expres myself well, I meant 'blind' as in ' 'if you want to play 'folow the dousing rod' to find the cahes, not blind to the whole game. I did gather from your post that you played this game before and hadn't a good time.)
    Last edited by smuchmuch; 2018-04-27 at 03:44 PM.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Quote Originally Posted by smuchmuch View Post
    Sort off. There's another easily missable scene like that with these twos that make it a little more clear what it's about. But like most of the strange idiosyncracyesand obvious isses of the campe.. it's never explored or delved in to the game, which given the theme of sad game, seems like a weird missed opportunies.
    (I assume that like with so many Tim Shaefer gmes there was plans for this me to be much bigger at first but when they went overtime and over budget (as they did) they obbled together somthing very quickly or the ending. In fact i'm pretty sure it was te case due to a couple of thins 'llpoint when we come to it.)
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    Is the scene that explains the cheer kids' poison related to the kid that reveals they tried to commit suicide with poison and jumping off of a building after you re-brain them?
    Quote Originally Posted by Keld Denar View Post
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Okay, time for more Psychonuts.

    Zodi Plays: Psychonauts [4] A Victory For Good Taste

    Video Length: 29:53

    Starting us off today, we begin the Brain Tumbler experiment! It opens us up to the Collective Unconcious, the morphogenetic hub of the mental worlds we'll be exploring in this game. An interesting idea, if nothing else. At the far end of it we find the door leading to our own mind, and step right in. Raz's mind is fairly...empty, showing only a Romani caravan and some figments, plus a vault showing how Raz made his way to Camp Whispering Rock. Tragically, we will never seen the world's smallest pony. Stepping into the caravan, we find ourselves stuck within static. Static that if we hit it, cracks open to reveal that we've been in an egg since we went inside. Around us is a horrifying forest, figments and in game objects both being made of horrible imagery and bones, with a rabbit the only nice thing here. Shortly into our exploration we find a horrible yellow eyed tumbler monster and are kicked out of the experiment by Sasha. Well that was fun!

    With that said and done, Sasha tells us he wants to teach us how to do a violence, so that we can actually continue the brain tumbler experiment. Of course he cannot ACTUALLY teach us how to fight just yet because otherwise he might get in serious trouble, showing Sasha is the only character who actually remembers the conceit of the plot by the way. He does direct us towards who can get us the Marksmanship learners permit, however, the legendary psychomaster Ford Crueller. Aka the weird guy we've been seeing around the camp. In his secret base (which we could of gone to do all of this exposition at any time) we learn a bit about Whispering Rock Summer Camp and why it's so...very much what it is. Crueller just kinda gives us the learner's permit and that's fine, more or less. We return to Sasha, and begin the proper training for our Psi Blasts in Sasha's Shooting Range, which is our next level. But before hand he also gives us A Piece Of Bacon so he can be a Navi for us. Thanks, Crueller.

    Back with Sasha, we're allowed into his mind. He teaches us about how shooting works, which isn't that complicated but is a little finicky since the lock on is kind of trash in how it works? I don't know how to really explain it in words, and I've tried a couple times, but the lock on feels really clunky in every single way. Regardless, we blow up the horrific monsters Sasha sets on us and begin shooting his mental Censor's...until Raz get's impatient and sets the spawner to such a degree it causes problems! We explode Sasha's ordered mind in what is probably my favorite level, but also least favorite given that navigating it kinda sucks because you can only access parts of it at a time by hitting switches. This isn't that bad when you're going through the plot part, but in going back to it later it can get a little tedious. We mind bullet our way through all the Censors, sealing up every pipe for them...only to realize that's actually a really bad thing to do, creating a build up of psychic energy that forms into a huge hideous Censor boss fight. And boy, what a boss fight it is! The game is incredibly unclear about what to do, and to be honest I should of realized it given all that's going on there, but it still feels like a REALLY bad boss. At any rate we explode it, Sasha gives us the merit badge (but it's signed by Crueller anyway because hah canned animations) and we leave his mind, ready to tumble once more. But that'll be for next time. Hope you all enjoyed, I'll see you then!

    ------

    So, like I did with Oleander, since we've finished the plot for Sasha's brain lets take a look at him. His mind is probably my favorite, and the most obviously framed as a testing ground. His mind is an ordered, (near) unbreakable cube in the void of space. It shows a clear level of control no one else in the game has, even when one of the sides of the cube is cracked open by the Censor leak. Sasha only lets a bit of him out at a time. When he does, it comes out as huge impressions of parts of his life. The first one a massive childhood bed, playing blocks, all that fun stuff. It even includes a memory of Sasha as a child (a tragic one, in which we see him love his mother, only to watch her die...) to really sell home that this first area is comprised of baby memories. It's truly fascinating, and a good look into Sasha's character, the idea that each section of his mind is that ordered.

    Of course it's an illusion. While the game does it's best, it cannot actually maintain that for even one side of the cube, the second one being entirely unrelated to his mentality. It's a shame, but not everything can be perfect. My best guess on how this one relates (since the figments in this part are all artsy and scholary looking things) is that they're meant to be something, maybe transistors, from his schooling? I don't know, as much as I do want to really dive in their and psychoanalyze these worlds the fact of the matter is that the game's actually not as good as it claims to be about this stuff. It's a shame because the rest of Sasha's mind works really well, it's just this one bit that goes poorly. The next facet of Sasha's mind shows all manner of cobbler's equipment, plus of course shoe boxes with his name on them. It's his Dad's job, obviously, so this is about his more personal family memories. It also features the first appearance of Repressed Rage, horrible stupid awful enemies that explode violently and represent an inner anger. While we don't see it this episode, there's a second memory vault for Sasha that more than explains juuust why he of all people would have this enemy in his brain. It'll be fun to show off, I think.

    The final part of Sasha's brain looks like a super villain device, and sadly is the least interesting in terms of what they do with it. Maybe the second facet was meant to be a part of this too? It would explain some things. But yeah this is meant to be the side of his brain where all his Psychonauts adventures are, and that's kinda cool. Ultimately, Sasha Nein's mind is one of my favorite since it shows the potential this game has for diving into a mental world and really doing something interesting and creative with it. The emphasis in this case being potential.

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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Is there some reason why you keep calling him Ford Crueller when the game is very clearly and repeatedly spelling his name as Cruller?

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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Because I thought it was Crueller.

    I'll be correcting that in the next videos, my bad!
    Last edited by LaZodiac; 2018-04-30 at 11:24 AM.

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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Huh. Okay, this is more the kind of environment I had in mind. And that's a neat level-select thing.

    ...the mind itself is still very, very dark and dreary.

    Oh, there we go. Weird transitions. Much better.

    Yeah, Sasha's mindscape seems to make a lot better use of the conceit. It's something that could only appear here.

    And, yeesh, yeah... those memories do get poignant and personal.

    I think they had some neat ideas, but... yeah, that boss is pretty poorly executed.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    I have to wonder what version of the game are you using. Because for example you say it's impossible to get back to Nein lab wih the transit system, which is odd because it i most cetainely possible in the version I'm playing. Same with liitte things like the fact you can't directly put back items it the inventory.
    Mke me wondering if maybe it's nota patch thing.

    he game is incredibly unclear about what to do, and to be honest I should of realized it given all that's going on there, but it still feels like a REALLY bad boss.
    Actualy, it does . If you get crushed by the Megacensor giant stamp (which takes quite a bit of healt but is thankfully not an insta death) Sasha will tell you to shut the censor valves before attacking it.

    I'm personaly okay that it doesn't tell you outright snce it's somewhat fairly easy to figure out if you just take a little time to observe the boss istelf while running from it.Though I do agree the health bar should be bigger and make it clearer that you can't kill it right now.

    My best guess on how this one relates (since the figments in this part are all artsy and scholary looking things) is that they're meant to be something, maybe transistors, from his schooling
    I alway figured it was more meant to evoke a general symbolim of his sense of minimalistic aesthetics and very organised logical side of his world view

    But since then, Double Fine did release another Psychonaut game, called 'Psychonauts in the Rhombus of Ruin' meant to serve as an intequel between Psychoanut 1 ad 2, as sch it contain major spoiler for tis one. (since it's a VR only game sadly, could'nt play it, just saw a LP)
    Anyhow as an aside,it is shown in it that Sasha does have a bit of an obsesion with UFOs and aliens, which kind of fit with this face general aestehtic of circles and hanging things in the sky.

    The upper part does also sort of remind me of these toys people put above cribs. Weither or not it's on purpose, I have no idea.
    Last edited by smuchmuch; 2018-04-30 at 03:27 PM.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Quote Originally Posted by smuchmuch View Post
    I have to wonder what version of the game are you using. Because for example you say it's impossible to get back to Nein lab wih the transit system, which is odd because it i most cetainely possible in the version I'm playing. Same with liitte things like the fact you can't directly put back items it the inventory.
    Mke me wondering if maybe it's nota patch thing.

    Actualy, it does . If you get crushed by the Megacensor giant stamp (which akes quite a bit of healt but is thankfully not an insta death) Sasha will tell you to shut the censor valves before attacking it.

    I alway figured it was more meat to evoke a general symbolim of his sense of minimalistic aesthetics and very organised logical side of his world view

    But since then, Double Fine did release another Psychonaut game, called 'Psychonauts in the Rhombus of Ruin' meant to serve as an intequelbetween Psychoanut 1 ad 2, as sch it contain major spoiler for tis one. (since it's a VR only game sadly, coulntplay, just saw a LP)
    Anyhow as an aside,it is shown in it that Sasha does have a bit of an obssesion with UFOs and aliens, which kind of fit with this face general aestehtic of circles and hanging things in the sky.

    The upper part does also sort of remind me of these toys people put above cribs. Weither or not it's on purpose, I have no idea.
    I think I mentioned this before, but the "put the item back" button is just something I missed. I swore I had hit it at the time but it didn't work, but now it is. Additionally, as I'll show in another video, I am in fact wrong about not being able to go to Sasha's lab via the stump transit. I just never noticed you could scroll down to it!

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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Also, I want to mention on the topic of "Gypsy" versus "Romani."

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    I could go into my own thoughts on political correctness, but that would be off topic right now, so I'll just say this...

    Yes, we get it. "Gypsy" is now considered politically incorrect and is also inaccurate. (It's believed to be a bastardization of "Egyptian" because it was wrongly believed that the Romani people were immigrants from Egypt, in the same vein as "Indian" being used for Native Americans. No, sorry George Carlin, it was not short for "un gente en Dios.") Romani is the more accurate and now the more accepted term. The game was made before the new terminology became "popularized" and is a product of its time.

    But let's also accept that this game is NOT racist. There is no racial judgment or hatred of any sort present here, not even accidental. The Romani character is the hero and the most upright and sympathetic character here.

    So yes, we can make a comment that the game is using an incorrect and outdated term, and acknowledge that they should probably say Romani... but having to draw attention to it EVERY TIME the game does it really just comes across as race-baiting, I think.


    EDIT: I've talked to Zodi about this privately. I'll leave it up in case anyone's curious, but don't feel the need to derail the thread with it.
    Last edited by Knight9910; 2018-04-30 at 06:09 PM.
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    Default Re: Zodi Plays: Psychonauts (This One Time, At ESPer Camp...)

    Yeah this is going to be the last time I bring it up, don't worry about it Knight. I didn't think I brought it up that often, though? I mentioned it off hand in the first episode and am here saying, when it shows up, yeah this game did a problematic thing. Was not saying it was racist, just making a note of it.

    And that can be the end of this discussion since it bleeds a little into non-board safe topics.
    Last edited by LaZodiac; 2018-04-30 at 05:20 PM.

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