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November 25
2013

Wootini’s Weekly Video Podcast #148

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This week I start off with something geeky before segueing into videogames, so if you don’t care about Doctor Who, just skip the beginning part. But after ranting about that for a little bit, I report on one of the big launches that happened this past week. No, it’s probably not the one you’re thinking about… This week’s vidcast is embedded after the jump!

And if you want to get a better look at the photos I took, you can visit my Flickr page!

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November 22
2013

Wootini’s Weekly Animal Crossing Diary

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Dear Diary,

It was a big week, with a huge fishing tournament and some new fish to catch. And Geneva looks prettier than ever now that the fall colors have truly set in. But even as awesome as Geneva is, people still keep trying to leave! What is wrong with them? Sigh. Make the jump for this week’s adventures!

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November 22
2013

This SingStore Update Lives On The Second Floor

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Well, it’s finally time once again for another SingStore update! Having to wait three weeks is like torture. And now we’re going to have to wait another three weeks before the next one! Hopefully this is just for the holidays and we’ll be back to the fortnightly schedule come the new year. Anyway, the newest DLC out this week for SingStar is:

“Driven By You” by Brian May
“Stand By Me” by John Lennon
“Nobody Told Me” by John Lennon
“Whatever Gets You Thru’ The Night” by John Lennon
“Mother” by John Lennon
“Jealous Guy” by John Lennon
“Maneater” by Nelly Furtado
“Luka” by Suzanne Vega
“Human” by The Killers

Again the majority of the update is comprised of a song pack they broke up into single songs, but I still don’t want them. “Maneater” is pretty fun, but it’s another one I’d rather boogie to in Dance Central than sing. I’m actually seriously tempted by the delightfully tasty cheese of “Luka” but I’m probably just going to go with The Killers this time. Anything calling your name?

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November 20
2013

Tabletopping: Ashen Stars

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So far, our group has played classic fantasy in Dungeon World, modern-day supernatural in Don’t Rest Your Head, and, er, 1920s Russian ninjas in Fate Core. So where else do we turn to now…but the stars? Science fiction RPGs definitely have a history, so it was inevitable that we played one eventually. The question was which one?

I had a vague plan of what games I wanted to try, and for this session I wanted to play a game that used the GUMSHOE system. The GUMSHOE system is based on investigation and mysteries rather than dungeon-crawling and explosions (though there are plenty of those too). The choices I presented to my group were to play either Nights’ Black Agents, where you play as ex-special forces fighting vampires in a superspy setting, Mutant City Blues, where X-Men meets CSI, or the game that we ended up playing, which is Ashen Stars.

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November 20
2013

Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster Dated

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With all the new games and consoles flooding the market, is anybody in the mood for a remastered version of an old classic? Well, Square Enix is hoping so, because they’ve announced that Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster will be released on March 18, 2014 for the PlayStation 3 for $39.99.

And fans of the North American versions of these games might still be interested in replaying these because besides the upgraded HD graphics, these titles are technically the international versions Final Fantasy X: Eternal Calm and Final Fantasy X-2: Last Mission. Plus, if you pre-order the game, you’ll get the limited edtion that includes special packaging and a concept artbook.

I did see the game in action at this year’s New York Comic Con, but I didn’t actually play it. Pretty sure it plays exactly the same, though. But I can say that it looks especially pretty all gussied up for HD. And while I did enjoy both FFX and FFX-2 (the Charlie’s Angels of FF games), I’m actually slightly more intrigued that a Vita port is on the way. I always have more time to play portables so a lengthy RPG is more likely to be finished in a timely fashion on my 3DS or Vita instead of a home console! But details about the PS Vita version are still forthcoming… Sigh.

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November 19
2013

Ms. Male Character – Tropes vs. Women in Video Games

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The newest entry in Anita Sarkeesian’s Tropes vs. Women in Video Games video series has arrived, focusing this time on the Ms. Male Character trope. Worth noting is that this video, despite being the fifth in the series, is actually only the second episode from Anita’s original list of planned topics.

This trope hits home for me as a big fan of characters like Pretty Bomber, Dixie Kong, and Amy Rose. These characters have, of course, come into their own over time (with Dixie taking the starring role in Donkey Kong Country 3, and Amy Rose having taken major roles in many Sonic titles) but it’s still worth noting how problematic their initial conceptions were.

Also very interesting is how the use of supposed ‘feminine’ signifiers affects the portrayal of trans and gay characters in video games.

What do you think about the Ms. Male Character trope? Let us know in the comments!

Catch up with the rest of the series at the official Feminist Frequency Youtube channel, and keep up with Anita on twitter @femfreq.

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November 19
2013

Mario & Link Join Forces!

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This is a big time for videogames right now, but if new consoles aren’t really in your budget right now, Nintendo is launching a few games you might be interested in. But can the combined forces of the Mario and Zelda universes ward off the Xbox One and PlayStation 4? We’ll just have to wait and see.

But until then, this Friday, November 22, is a big day for Nintendo releases, with Super Mario 3D World for the Wii U and The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds and Mario Party: Island Tour for the 3DS being released. And as usual, if you happen to be able to get to the Nintendo World Store, you can buy them all a day early, starting at 8:00 pm on Thursday, November 21!

Obviously demos of the games will be available for play, so you can see if you actually want to purchase them (although having demoed A Link Between Worlds and Super Mario 3D World, it’s kind of a no-brainer there). There will also be costumed characters from the games wandering around so you can get pictures with folks like Mario, Luigi and Link. In addition, a chalk artist will be revealing artwork inspired by A Link Between Worlds.

So swing on by Nintendo World in Rockefeller Plaza on Thursday, November 21, from 8:00 pm to midnight for the launch mania. And if you see me, say hello! I’ve just gotta see what this turns into. I mean, I’ve seen some crazy Mario game launches as well as some crazy Zelda game launches. So the two of them together? I can’t even imagine! (It might even come close to reaching the mania of a Pokémon launch!)