Monthly Archives: May 2014

You Gotta Speed, Keed with Retronauts Episode 23

retronauts 23 cover

Hey folks—it’s Bob again, and happy to report this is the first episode of mine in a while where I didn’t sit down to edit and discover some horrible audio problem that didn’t present itself during the recording. So hooray for that! Anyhow, you might not think this topic is your cup of tea, but in recent years I’ve become a huge fan of speedruns, and discovered they’re much, much more than watching people cruise through games at an alarming speed. And if you don’t believe me, listen on and prepare to have your mind changed and/or blown by our deep dive on this topic—and be sure to check out the links below if you’re interested in seeing these speedruns for yourself. Thanks again to Nich Maragos, who provided the generous donation (and topic suggestion) that made this episode possible.

Libsyn (1:27:50 | MP3 Download) | SoundCloud

This episode’s description:

“The art of speedrunning is barely two decades old, but in that time we’ve seen our share of stupefying feats from game masters that would put Captain N himself to shame. Will this burgeoning subculture be the key to keeping love for classic games alive? Thanks to a generous donation from Kickstarter backer Nich Maragos, join Bob Mackey, Jeremy Parish, Ray Barnholt, and guest Christian Nutt as the Retronauts explore the joys of breaking beloved games open like so many digital pinatas.”

This episode’s music comes from the arranged tracks on the Wild Trax (Stunt Race FX) – Rare Tracks for Driving album.

Relevant Links:

The Let’s Play Archive

Awesome Games Done Quick

Speed Demos Archive

COMPET-N

The first tool-assisted speedrun (for Super Mario Bros. 3)

Gameological Society feature on Mario 64 speedrunners

Aaand here are some handy links that organize all of the Awesome Games Done Quick runs into a single list (keep in mind there’s more than one page for each of these). You can find almost all of the speedruns we talked about through the following:

Awesome Games Done Quick 2013

Awesome Games Done Quick 2014

Summer Games Done Quick 2013

Please consider leaving us a nice review in the iTunes Music Store. It really helps the show!

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Come See Retronauts at TooManyGames!

It seems like only four months ago we were soliciting suggestions of east coast US conventions to have another live show. The majority response favored Philadelphia’s TooManyGames, and so we looked into it, and it wasn’t much longer before we got on the list. So we’ll be there at the end of June!

What can you expect from us this go-around? In truth, our topic was revealed on the TMG site a while ago: another profile of a great console of the ’90s, the 3DO. I’ll be hosting this time (hi it’s me Ray), and I was partly inspired to cover the system when recently writing about Warp. What’s floating in my head is something a bit different from our usual format, though I stress only by a bit — as much as I inquired, I can’t get a t-shirt cannon through the TSA.

The Retronauts panel is scheduled for the first night of the con, on Friday, June 27. If you’ve already got tickets, great, and we hope to see you and say hi! If not, well, hopefully today serves as a good reminder. We’ll let you know if anything changes, good or bad.

And thanks to all of you who lent your feedback earlier! We’re happy to head somewhere new on the east coast, and of course, will endeavor to do it again in the future.

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Retronauts Pocket 22 and the joy of superfluous keypads

retronauts 22 pocket cover

Hi everyone, sorry this episode is a little late. I’ve had a busy week, not least of all because Bob just came aboard full time at USgamer, and I’ve been trying to whip him into shape. Dude is recalcitrance personified.

This latest Pocket episode revisits a topic that I’d actually forgotten we covered at all — the ColecoVision. But someone told me we did one of those, back in the olden times. After doing 150 of these shows, they start to blend together. In any case, I’m confident that this exploration of the ColecoVision is far more entertaining than any supposed forays into this topic that may or may not have happened once long ago.

We’ve already covered the NES and Atari 2600, and if I have my druthers this episode is simply another checkmark in our journey to jabbering about every classic 8-bit console. Stay tuned.

Retronauts Pocket 22 direct download | SoundCloudRSS feed
And this is our obligatory spot where we beg for iTunes reviews.

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Daaaarliiiing, it’s Retronauts Episode 22

Actually, despite the art and blog post title, this episode really has nothing to do with Lum or Urusei Yatsura. It’s just that we got sidetracked by a tangent about anime of the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s, and lacking any particular cohesive theme for this episode I decided to use that brief distraction as an excuse to draw Lum. I believe this makes for a “deal with it” kind of situation. So sorry.

retronauts 22 cover

This episode’s theme ended up being… well, let’s just say we played fast and loose. Kickstarter backer Jonathan Anderson wanted us to talk about misplaced nostalgia or nostalgia for things we never experienced, and we did our best to fulfill this mandate. I’m not promising we succeeded, but by god we gave it a shot.

Also of note: Long-time Retronauts contributor Chris Kohler finally makes his Vol. III debut. Huzzah!

This episode’s soundtrack selections come from Final Fantasy V, which we discussed somewhat at length near the beginning of the show. And my apologies if the sound quality isn’t perfect this week; I edited and assembled this podcast on a cross-country plane flight, so I can’t tell if the incessant whining sound was the plane engines or something in the podcast itself.

Anyway, please enjoy. Especially you, Jonathan Anderson.

Listen and download, fleshy mortals:

Direct download (MP3) | SoundCloud | RSS 

Finally, please consider leaving us a nice review on iTunes Store, because it’s an easier (and less creepy) way to express your enthusiasm for Retronauts than hunting us down and hugging us.

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Retronauts Pocket Episode 21: Joe & Mac

This episode of Pocket certainly doesn’t live up to its namesake, but I’d be lying if I said I expected it to turn out that way. This week we talk about Data East’s Joe & Mac franchise, but there were only four games to talk about, so how could we get close to an hour of talk? Well, we did, and chalk it up to four games that are pretty different from one another — Joe & Mac, aka Caveman Ninja, started as a straightforward arcade platformer, but Data East then shoved a different character under the umbrella, then changed up the formula for the next game, and then made the fourth and final Joe & Mac into essentially a Tumble Pop sequel. With characters like Bonk and Master Higgins staying pretty consistent in their game styles, you have a little less to talk about. But with Joe & Mac, there’s several talking points in each installment. But that’s what makes a good discussion! Join me, Bob, Jeremy and our guest, Mikel Reparaz from fellow podcast Vidjagame Apocalypse as we talk about this funky caveman duo (and their “country cousin,” Congo) and what makes their games so appealing. And maybe you caught Bob streaming the original Joe & Mac a day before we recorded — if not, check it out for his guided tour through the game.

Direct download (MP3) | SoundCloud | RSS Find us on the iTunes Store and leave a nice review!

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