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Indie and Retro
74 minutes | Jun 20, 2022
Season 3: CreepyPasta
Warning: spooky stuff! This is a podcast about the creepypastas, and the scary stuff your friend said his cousin saw in a game once, and secret codes in games that may not actually exist (unless they do…?). How much is real? How much is completely made up by someone being impish? And how much is a perversion of something that did really happen once, but has morphed beyond all recognition into something new? Maybe don’t listen to this one right before bed… Additional stuff: The Polybius Conspiracy documentary podcast Cat DeSpira’s Polybius deep-dive
48 minutes | May 18, 2022
Season 3: Team Fortress 2
We're back! Get ready for a summer edition of the Indie & Retro Podcast. Kicking things off: Team Fortress 2. This episode we talk about my formative years playing the game, get into the dev stuff, and ramble about hats. Yes, I said hats!
29 minutes | Sep 20, 2021
Episode 27: Sonic the Hedgehog Part 2
Part 2 of our Sonic podcast is about the marketing and legacy of his first game. Lots of good games are around, but very few had the cultural impact of this little blue hedgehog with attitude. If it wasn’t packaged specifically for the American market and showed people what the 90’s were all about, he may be more of an Alex Kidd today: just another platformer beaten by Mario. While the long-term hasn’t been completely kind to Sonic, there was a time he was on top of the world. How’d he get there? Listen and find out!
52 minutes | Sep 13, 2021
Episode 26: Sonic the Hedgehog Part 1
Sonic is a fast boy, and - like Blur’s “Song 2” - is exactly what America wanted at the right time, even when it seemed almost too obvious. He made games cool. He brought a speed and a style that had never been seen before. And he was sold to us in exactly the right way. Sonic the Hedgehog changed the course of video games and accomplished his goal (at least for a little while) of defeating Mario. Part 1 of our Sonic podcast discusses his development history and shows you some indie games you might like if you approve of Sonic’s environmentalism themes or just miss playing as Tails while your brother is running around as Sonic.
58 minutes | May 24, 2021
Episode 25: Dragon Age
Dragon Age games take way too long to make, or aren’t given enough time at all. They weren’t supposed to have dragons, or fireballs, or guys with horns. But guess what! It has all of those things, and even the “bad” games in the series have so much to offer. Join your lovely hosts as we talk about the series that proved hardcore Western RPG’s (with romance, even!) still had an audience, an audience ever eager for more. How retro will Origins be when Dragon Age 4 releases? At least a little more retro than now. These games were never easy to make, but those are the games with the best stories, yeah?
77 minutes | Feb 9, 2021
Episode 24: Famicom Disk System
Links to indie games I mentioned: Unknown Castle One Dreamer Ocean's Heart And now, a word from Nick: The Famicom Disk System is a weird little thing that only came out in Japan, long before console add-ons like the 32X and Sega CD destroyed all interest in ever trying them again. Would it work? No one knew - it was the video game Wild West of the late 80’s! A few things kept it from ever catching on or releasing overseas, but we recently found one in great condition at a retro game store and we’re here to tell you all about it! It was full of great ideas, but technology just moved too fast...
56 minutes | Dec 7, 2020
Episode 23: Prince of Persia
Indie games I mention: Tukoni Amazing Cultivation Simulator I am Dead And, yes I did research to see that the Cowboy Bebop fight scene was animated by the same dude. Now a word from Nick: Prince of Persia was made pretty much by one man: movie loving Yale graduate Jordan Mechner. He wasn’t great at animation, so he used rotoscoping. He wasn’t developing for a console with a lot of memory, so his enemies had to be very efficiently programmed. There were a lot of constraints, and he worked around them to make a franchise that - at first - wasn’t that successful. The thing is, it looked so advanced compared to everything else on the market, and it’s now considered a classic. Join us, and also learn about some indie games that you might like even if you don’t care about Prince of Persia even a little bit!
57 minutes | Sep 15, 2020
Episode 22: ET
Howard Scott Warshaw’s Atari 2600 game E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial is known by many as the worst video game of all time. Was it, though? Or is the truth a little more nuanced? Learn the history behind one of the most infamous games ever created, “a game that Steven Spielberg liked,” according to a quote they should’ve put on the box.
62 minutes | Aug 1, 2020
Episode 21: Rockband
Harmonix didn’t invent the music game, but they did perfect it, so no man could challenge them in the art of rhythm! Games where you just push the buttons on the screen at the right time got very popular, very quickly, and seemed to die just as fast. Rock Band was the peak of this trend, featuring hundreds of dollars of plastic instruments cluttering the closets of nerds everywhere. Where did it come from? Where did it go? What is the story of Rock Band, Joe? Join hosts Nick and Mumbles as we go through the history of one of the biggest money making franchises in history, Rock Band.
68 minutes | May 19, 2020
Episode 20: SimCity
SimCity is not a game I've played, but it is a game that helped inspire the stuff I love now! Here's links to all the indie games I mention: Parkasaurus Simmiland Game Dev Tycoon And a word from Nick: SimCity is what happens when one guy (Will Wright) is really interested in a very specific, very gamifiable subject like city planning and building, and then he turns that interest and a love of building virtual islands into a video game where all his political views hang out for everyone to see. Nobody thought it would be a success - it was so different from the action platformers of the day. But dozens of sequels across three decades later, it’s one of the most important games of all time. Join hosts Mumbles and Nick on a journey through a game series that wasn’t like any other, and paved the way for so many: SimCity.
58 minutes | Mar 19, 2020
Episode 19: Monkey Island
We delve into the mystery of monkey island! Well, actually, that's Ron Gilbert's secret to keep.
65 minutes | Feb 18, 2020
Episode 18: Metroid Prime
Links to the indie games I talk about: Alone With You Still There Journey to the Savage Planet And a word from Nick: Metroid Prime is a terrific game... but it was not made without a cost. Join your Indie and Retro hosts on a wild journey of crunch, excess, and neglect. Hear how a new studio got handed the reins to one of Nintendo’s most beloved franchises, dropped the ball big time, then picked it up and ran for a last-second touchdown. We also start a listener mailbag in this, the second year(!) of the podcast, and the indie games this week? They didn’t copy Metroid Prime, but they definitely get you in the same MOOD. What gems will Mumbles unearth this week? Only one way to find out!
102 minutes | Jan 24, 2020
Episode 17: Our Favorite Games of the Decade
These may not be the BEST, but they are our favorite :)
24 minutes | Jan 9, 2020
Episode 16: 2019 Favorite Games
This is part 1 of a long, long end of the decade podcast! Next week, we go over our favorite games of the decade!
82 minutes | Nov 18, 2019
Episode 15: Hideo Kojima
Hideo Kojima is one of the last video game auteurs. In a world where AAA games are increasingly made by hundreds of people, “A Hideo Kojima Production” means you’re getting a singular vision. That vision can be a little wacky and convoluted, but it’s a vision honed by years upon years of movie watching and hard work. Join us as we follow the journey of this man from humble beginnings to where he is now, at the top of the mountain with a stack of boxes strapped to his back.
74 minutes | Oct 15, 2019
Episode 14: Portal
First released as the smallest part of The Orange Box in 2007, Portal and its sequel went on to become two of the most important games of all time. How did two little games made by a bunch of college students go on to change the gaming landscape as we know it? Join your lovely hosts Nick and Mumbles as we take you on an adventure from… a lot longer ago than any of us want to admit. Portal Month is here!
75 minutes | Sep 3, 2019
Episode 13: Donkey Kong Part 2
After the first few Donkey Kong games made literally boatloads of money, the titular ape didn’t always get the respect he deserved. Sure, there were bright spots (Donkey Kong Country, Donkey Kong ‘94, Diddy Kong Racing), but there were also entire series you’ve probably barely even heard of, let alone played. The license was passed around from one developer to the next, and we haven’t had a new game in the series for years. Still, he’s instantly recognizable and an important part of Nintendo’s - and video gaming’s - history. Hear us talk about all the Donkey Kong games that were developed after the arcade original, as well as a handful of indie games that wouldn’t exist without DK’s historical influence, in part two of the Donkey Kong podcast!
45 minutes | Aug 26, 2019
Episode 12: Donkey Kong Part 1
Donkey Kong made SO MUCH MONEY that Nintendo survived the Great Video Game Crash. This gorilla is a pop culture phenomenon, and its sound effects are still used as de facto “game sounds” when modern TV shows or movies need to show that something is a video game. It had a lot of firsts, too: first jump button, first in-game story cutscenes, and the first appearance of Mario. It’s also HARD, and the learning curve is steep. That, plus the 2007 documentary King of Kong, has kept the quest for the Donkey Kong world record high score hotly contested and much sought after. Hear us talk about the competitive scene and the history of the arcade original in Donkey Kong: The Podcast: Part 1!
68 minutes | Jul 22, 2019
Episode 11: Animal Crossing
Animal Crossing! What a nice game for all to enjoy. We have some memories to share, some indie games and some OPINIONS about the mobile game. Below are some words from Nick and the links to many things I talked about! And now, some words from Nick: Animal Crossing is a life simulation game where you get the life you deserve instead of the one you have. Hang out, eat fruit, play video games inside your video games, plant trees, chop down trees, shop, fish, dig up fossils… it’s an ideal world. Sure, sometimes the dark cloud of consumerism clouds your vision a bit, but not forever, and never in a way where we have to decide between eating food or buying gas this week. Many of us grew up with Animal Crossing and saw a world we could have if only we tried hard enough, if we sold enough fruit to the shop, if we paid our bills eventually. Life, sadly, has other plans for all of us. But that doesn’t mean we can’t visit once in a while and let the cool sea breeze wash over our souls, leaving a scent that lingers long after we go back to our offices and obligations. Links: Creature Street Spiritfarer Among Trees Inside the final hours of Star Wars: Galaxies RIP IN PEACE WII SHOP
56 minutes | Jun 24, 2019
Episode 10: Swordquest
Delve into the mysterious Swordquest contest! Learn about alternate reality games that utilize indies to share secrets across the web~
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