GSPC Episode #14: Nintendo’s Labo Announcement

January 18, 2018

Nintendo announced a brand new product today: The Nintendo Labo, a series of papercraft DIY kits that come with software. Rob and Kip are really excited, and discuss Nintendo's continued capacity to surprise. Additionally, Rob talks about Labo's engineering genuis, while Kip speculates that this is a great answer to the "plastic peripheral" problem that plagued the Nintendo Wii.

Contact Rob at rthoward2@gmail.com, rohogames.com, rohoGames on twitter, rohoGames80 on instagram, and rohoGames on facebook.

Contact Kip Carbone at nervouspixels@gmail.com, nervousPixels on twitter, and nervousPixels on artstation.com!

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GSPC Episode #13: Destination Games, Part 1

January 17, 2018

Rob and Kip have a wide ranging discussion on games that take you somewhere: destination games. Whether it is a famous city, a rustic wilderness, or even back in time to an earlier era, the guys discuss why games that use real world settings have unique game design requirements and attributes.

Kip calls out Rockstar Games in particular for using detailed worlds based in reality to establish an incredibly strong sense of place. Rob points out that it isn't just the main gameplay systems or most expensive aspects of a game that can establish a world, it is the small, lightly interactive bread crumbs distributed throughout a game that makes a difference in how effective these designs can be.

Rob and Kip speculate on what an indie game based in San Jose might be like, to give a sense of place on a budget.

Additionally, they discuss the industry term called the "vertical slice," and why this production technique might be frowned upon by some developers.

Contact Rob at rthoward2@gmail.com, rohogames.com, rohoGames on twitter, rohoGames80 on instagram, and rohoGames on facebook.

Contact Kip Carbone at nervouspixels@gmail.com, nervousPixels on twitter, and nervousPixels on artstation.com!

Games Mentioned

Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon
Grand Theft Auto Series
Lego City Undercover
Red Dead Redemption
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain
LA Noire
Assassin's Creed Series
Uncharted Series

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GSPC Episode #12: Xenoblade Chronicles 2

January 9, 2018

In 2010, Monolith Soft reinvigorated the JRPG genre with Xenoblade Chronicles, an instant classic on the Nintendo Wii. In late 2017, the third game in the series was released (yes, the third, not the second, I know it is confusing...), Xenoblade Chronicles 2.

Rob discusses the unique level and game design properties of the game, and why it stands out from other RPGs.

Contact Rob at rthoward2@gmail.com, rohogames.com, rohoGames on twitter, rohoGames80 on instagram, and rohoGames on facebook.

Contact Kip Carbone at nervouspixels@gmail.com, nervousPixels on twitter, and nervousPixels on artstation.com!

Shout outs:

Under The Card Board Box Podcast

Game Dev Club Podcast

 

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GSPC Episode #11: Hyperdimension Neptunia

January 1, 2018

Rob and Patrick discuss the unique Hyperdimension Neptunia series: its quirky history, colorful environments, and refined battle system. This is contrasted to other JRPG games. The environments and dungeons eschew realism for color and whimsy, and this is again contrasted with the current trend towards verisimillitude in game worlds. Also Rob and Patrick agree: the Playstation TV is a cool little console that you should grab while you can! Stay tuned for a bonus conversation about the cult classic movie The Room!

Games Mentioned:

Hyperdimension Neptunia (series)
Final Fantasy VI
Final Fantasy XV
Earthbound
Dragon's Dogma
Lost Odyssey

NOTE: Starting with this episode, we're dropping the "mini" classification from the shows. The original idea was that mini podcasts would be short, 10-20 minute discussions, while the full episodes are over a half hour minimum. However, most episodes are hitting 30-50 minutes no matter what "format" we planned them as, so this distinction doesn't really help!

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GSPC Mini Episode #6: Talking Arcades with ArcadeHeroes.com’s Adam Pratt

December 26, 2017

The coin operated game industry remains a vital part of interactive entertainment, and ArcadeHeroes.com's Adam Pratt is in the trenches, both as a blogger and as an owner operator, running the Game Grid Arcade in the Salt Lake City Utah area. Rob discusses various aspects of the arcade business, including topics such as:

1. Why does most arcade game designs limit themselves to light gun shooters and racing games?

2. Do arcade game designers shun skill in their designs, and if so, why?

3. What impact does the recent expansion of Round1 arcades from Japan have in the American arcade industry?

4. How are the "arcade indies" doing?

5. What cool stuff might be coming in 2018 for arcades?

Rob Howard can be reached at rthoward2@gmail.com, @rohoGames on twitter, rohoGames80 on instagram, and rohoGames on facebook. His website is www.rohogames.com.

Adam Pratt can be found at www.arcadeheroes.com.

Kip Carbone can be reached at nervouspixels@gmail.com, @nervouspixels on twitter, and nervous pixels on artstation.com.

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GSPC Mini Episode #5: Star Wars Republic Commando

December 20, 2017

Everyone knows about Battlefront, Knights of the Old Republic, and maybe classics like Dark Forces, but did you know LucasArts produced a first person shooter set in the Clone Wars that was ahead of its time? That game was the brilliant Star Wars Republic Commando, and Rob talks about its design! Find Rob at rthoward2@gmail.com, @rohoGames on twitter, rohoGames80 on instagram, and rohoGames on facebook. Kip Carbone can be found at nervouspixels@gmail.com, @nervousPixels on twitter, and nervouspixels on artstation.com.

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GSPC Episode #4: Star Wars Battlefront II

December 13, 2017

With the release of The Last Jedi coming, we thought it would be cool to analyze the latest Star Wars Battlefront game! And yes, we do talk just a bit about microtransactions, but fortunately we also dig into the level design, especially of the game's single player campaign. Contact Rob at rthoward2@gmail.com, rohogames.com, @rohoGames on twitter, rohoGames on facebook, and rohoGames80 on Instagram. Contact Kip at nervouspixels@gmail.com, @nervousPixels on twitter, and at nervous pixels on artstation.com.

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GSPC Mini Episode #4: Rob and Kip talk Death Stranding

December 8, 2017

The latest Death Stranding trailer dropped, and Rob and Kip have a conversation about Hideo Kojima's ability to create mystery, his influences from John Carpenter, and his individual artistic vision.

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Grid Snaps Podcast Episode 1: Nioh

December 4, 2017

Rob and Kip debut their new podcast with a discussion about Koei Tecmo's Nioh, a Dark Souls style action RPG. The Grid Snaps Podcast is a deep dive into the craft of video game design and art, from the perspective of Senior World Designer Rob Howard, and Senior Environment Artist Kip Carbone.

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GSPC Mini Episode #3: Talking Cuphead with Art Director Ken Hogan

December 4, 2017

Rob has a great discussion about Cuphead with Ken Hogan, Art Director for Nerd Kingdom.

Rob is available at rthoward2@gmail.com, @rohoGames on twitter, rohoGames on facebook, and rohoGames80 on Instagram. Kip Carbone can be reached at nervouspixels@gmail.com, and nervouspixels on artstation.com. Ken Hogan can be found on artstation.com as inkmech.

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