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If you drop a penny from the Empire State Building

posted on July 30th, 2007 by christian

Penny Arcade showed more clips of their game at Comic Con. Being a daily PA reader since 2001, I feel I have a bit of a right to criticize them for what I saw, and this in turn will please the rest of the readers and staff.

If you didn’t see the trailer, they are making a jRPG – possibly filled with long scenes of dialogue, and turn based combat where characters move back to their starting position after attacking. Watching the clips was like watching youtube videos of Final Fantasy, and we all know that’s no fun unless you’re watching spoilers.

I should have seen this coming. Over the years the PA fellas have been playing more and more jRPGs, and at some point Gabe actually complained about the loss of ATB in FF12. Considering also how easy a template this is to follow, the choice makes perfect sense.

I just wish that weren’t the case because it practically guarantees that I won’t have any interest in it. This is a very dangerous wire act for PA to be trying; if they fuck this game up, a large chunk of their legitimacy is going to immediately vanish (I’ll leave this space for Jay to insert a joke about “What legitimacy?”).

Whether it is okay for someone to make a crappy game and still make fun of crappy games is something we can all discuss, but if the game does flop, it will be all the ammo people need to shut them up at every junction. I can respect their bravery, but at the same time, I know they can do better.

On the other hand, if the battle system is traditional enough, and the story is lengthy, it just might see some favorable reviews. Lord knows it has happened before.

5 Comments

  1. GoldenJew said on July 30, 2007:

    I’m with you Christian– I give them props for trying to pull it off, but it’s a big gamble. My hope is they at a minumum get a decent enough game that they can try again. Making a good game is harder than people think. What we might see here is the infamous trap where everyone assumes they’ll never succumb to their own personal niche preference going into a game and alienating the masses– but it may be that they’re drinking too much of their jRPG kool-aid…

  2. Matt said on July 30, 2007:

    I’m sure they know some people won’t like the game. I mean, it’s the Internet, everyone fucking complains, even if there’s nothing to complain about. “ZOMG Fruitfucker’s penis is one pixel off!!!1 This game sucks!” They probably know some will hate it just because. But if they didn’t make it because of that, then it would be worse than if they did and it sucked. Spiritually, anyway. If the game sucks, they’re gonna be in a lot of trouble, but it’s better to say they did it than to pussy out. And the game looks pretty cool. I want to know if they actually agree with the reviews if the game does indeed suck. Will they reveal that? I’d like to think so.

  3. don said on July 30, 2007:

    I just put a large mark on my ‘how many times I’ve disagreed with Christian’ chalkboard. It is the only mark on the thing.

    You are looking at this far too logically. The fervor and obsession exhibited by the PA fan core will absolutely disallow any risk to be associate with this ‘wire act’.

    They could shit into a bucket, take a digital photo of it and release a game in which you have to type ‘bucket of shit’ into a box while while shown alternating pictures of dollar signs and the aforementioned digital shit shot.

    This is in NO way a hack on the PA guys; I believe they are a force of good in the gaming community (Child’s Play = they can do no wrong). The fact is, however, that this game is more of a ‘two guys who love video games get to make their own real deal video game for realz!’ than some sort of bid for market dominance or, in actuality, a viable option for GOTY.

  4. christian said on July 30, 2007:

    I think Don reminds us all of one major point; for every person on the ‘net that hates PA, there are 5 people that would kill them on Tycho and Gabe’s whim.

  5. GoldenJew said on July 30, 2007:

    I’ve been waiting for Tycho or Gabe to tell me to kill Jay for years now.

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