About Us | Game Reviews | Feature Articles | Podcast | Best Work | Forums | Shop | Review Game

GameCritics.com Podcast Episode 67: New Year's Resolutions, Skyward Sword and Winter Break Games

Tim Spaeth's picture

Happy New Year! We reveal the success rate of our 2011 gaming resolutions, and set some new ones for 2012. Plus, Fallout (the first one!), Infinity Blade II, Sequence, Darksiders, and The Legend of Zelda: Skyward BORED—am I right, people? With Chi Kong Lui, Brad Gallaway, Mike Bracken, Richard Naik, and Tim "My Wife Really Did Say That" Spaeth. Oh, and I almost forgot! This is the show that changes everything.

Download: Right click here and select "Save Target As..."
Subscribe: iTunes | Zune | RSS

Links:

Please send feedback and mailbag questions to podcast (at) gamecritics (dot) com.

Category Tags
Platform(s): Xbox 360   Wii   PS3   PC   iPhone   iPad  
Developer(s): Nintendo   Epic Games  
Series: The Legend of Zelda  
Genre(s): Role-Playing   Adventure/Explore  
Articles: Reports   Podcasts  

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Tim

Wow, I'm really sad to hear you're leaving, Tim :(
I know that the show will go on and everything, but you were as much a part of it as everyone else, and you brought a great deal of wit and insight to the show.

You will be sorely missed.

On a more positive note, I'm happy to hear Mike is enjoying Rayman Origins so much! It was my hands-down GotY for 2011, and it definitely deserves to be played by as many people as possible.
I hope Ubi will make more games like this, but I kind of doubt it, judging by how overlooked it was...

I will not be a jerk...

...and scream despairingly to guilt trip Tim Spaeth into coming back. But, I will really miss you, Tim! You are the heart and soul of the show and I will say today, as I will say on your last episode, that you have my heartfelt gratitude for guiding the writers of GameCritics into creating my best-loved podcast.

Tim

I think this video captures my feelings of Tim leaving.

You did a great job hosting and creating some sort of order into the chaos that I expect a group of writers to be.

Tim

Tim I think we speak for all the listeners when I say we will all miss you. I randomly found the gamecritics website when I had discovered that this site had given Halo 3 one of the lowest scores on Gamerankings. Since then I have been an avid reader. Concerning the podcasts, I would notice them but wouldn't listen to them, the whole idea of podcasts never really appealed to me. Listening to people talk for hours is not very attractive nor does it seem a good use of time. However reading more and more of the writers on this site, and my increasing respect for them made me take the plunge. I can't remember what podcast I had listened to first, but I have been doing so for a while. It is the only podcast I listen to and its a podcast I'm always looking forward to. Listening to you guys talk for hours is certainly not a waste of time. And for this Tim I thankyou. Your dry sense of humour is always welcome. Though theres always serious discussion about gaming on the podcasts, it can always be relied on you to make a sarcastic comment to make sure things aren't ever too po-faced. Tim, and all you guys never fail to make me smile and sometimes even make me laugh. We will miss you Tim, but your decision to spend more time with your family (and extended cloned members) and work commitments is one I'm sure that we all respect. Again I speak for us all when I say good luck with all your endeavors and take care.
Gareth

Huh? Tim's leaving the show?

Huh? Tim's leaving the show? Fuck, why all good things need to change? Didn't listen to the podcast yet (now downloading) but he needs more time for work? Worst excuse ever! He'll be back...

I'm saddened by the news of

I'm saddened by the news of Tim leaving and wish him the best of luck in the future

Sad

If we listeners make a donation would you stay?

I just hope Colin Baker

I just hope Colin Baker doesn't take over...
Gareth

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

Goodbye Tim!

Tim, we're all sorry to see you go. You were an excellent host, and the podcast will miss you. Having recently started my own podcast, I know how hard it is to keep a group of people on task, especially over the intarwebs.

Chi, I really do enjoy your contributions to the podcast and I think you should step in more. No one seems to talk about 3DS stuff except you, and that's a real shame.

I think you guys are overdoing it with the Skyward Sword criticism. Look, I'm not a fan of the Wii, but even I think you guys need to dial it down. Mike, you don't like motion controls. I get it. At this point I'm not interested in having anyone else tell me why they feel motion controls ruin the game.

Here's an analogy: don't go to a western and criticize it for not being a sci-fi movie. This rule of thumb goes for a lot of Gamecritics criticism, IMO.

Brad, I know you hate it when people tell you this, but you really ought to play more of Planescape: Torment. You seem to enjoy games with strong writing, and this game is basically the best written game I've ever played. I would recommend reading up on the Planescape universe and the old school AD&D rules before starting it up again. It can be really hard to follow if you don't know what THAC0 is, for example. Compared to modern D&D rules, AD&D is pretty esoteric. Fortunately, my girlfriend at the time explained to me how the stats work and that really enhanced my enjoyment of the game. I assume you tried the version available through GOG, but you might want to check out this collection if you haven't already.

In short, I think this game really is something you would dig. Its creators, as you probably know, also developed Fallout 2, and later went on to form Obsidian and developed Alpha Protocol, your beloved Fallout: New Vegas, and many other technically flawed yet well written games.

I also don't understand this categorical dismissal of PC gaming. There are so many amazing PC games out there that you really are missing out on a massive part of video gaming history if you just dismiss PC gaming entirely.

Good luck to you Timothy,

Good luck to you Timothy, you're a podcasting treasure not soon forgotten!

At this point

Sleeve states: "At this point I'm not interested in having anyone else tell me why they feel motion controls ruin the game."

Good to know -- I'll be sure to keep your personal interests at the forefront of my thoughts on all future discussions. I'm planning to call the next episode "Episode 68: Where We Do a Show For Sleeve -- Fuck the Rest of You." :p

That aside, you may remember that the controls were hardly the only problem brought up about Skyward Sword. They are the major glaring problem most have with the game -- but hardly the only one.

Mike Bracken wrote: That

Mike Bracken wrote:

That aside, you may remember that the controls were hardly the only problem brought up about Skyward Sword. They are the major glaring problem most have with the game -- but hardly the only one.

It's weird though.
I'm about 15 hours into the game, and I have not experienced any major problems with the motion controls whatsoever outside, perhaps, of the forward sword thrust, which is pretty unresponsive at times.
Everything else works fine, though. Flying your bird isn't even a fraction as difficult as a lot of people are making it out, and waving your sword in a given direction works fine.

I'm using the built-in Motion Plus thing that came with the game, btw, and I removed that ridiculous plastic sleeve, maybe that's the difference ;)

I have also yet to experience any kind of boredom or tedium (although people tell me this happens mostly in the latter half of the game) and I think the cast is the most lovable and lively bunch the series has ever seen (which isn't saying that much, admittedly). It also marks the first time in my life I've ever thought of Zelda herself as an attractive female character with a personality, rather than a bunch of pixels that needs to be rescued.

Zol,Some people profess to

Zol,

Some people profess to have no trouble with the controls, others have numerous problems. I've no idea why that is, but I can say the controls gave me headaches for pretty much the entirety of the 50 hours I spent with the game. The thrust was the worst offender, but not the only one. I've wondered if it's a set-up thing -- some people have different lighting, are a different distance from their sensor bar, etc. I'm genuinely interested in this because I've seen radically different responses to the controls. I don't think for a second that everyone who's raved about them in some sort of Nintendo fanboy apologist, so I'm really curious as to what makes the controls work so well for some people when they worked so poorly for me.

And the other can of worms there is that I still feel that anything the game does with the Wii-mote could have been done as well or better with a standard controller.

As for the rest, it's a good sign you made it through the dreadful tutorial stages -- but there's some real tedium as you get to the 25+ hour mark (maybe even a little later). It's weird -- it's hard to quantify because it's more a feeling of redundancy than boredom, I think. The game just doesn't have enough fresh content to justify its running time for me. It feels extremely padded in the second half, where I'd have liked it a lot more as a 25 hour game where everything Link has to do still felt (relatively speaking) fresh.

about Brad

sleeve wrote:

I also don't understand this categorical dismissal of PC gaming. There are so many amazing PC games out there that you really are missing out on a massive part of video gaming history if you just dismiss PC gaming entirely.

As a PC gamer, I had the same reaction too, especially as a fan of Brad. But I've learnt to understand him his daily 4 hours of sleep, busy life and total lack of pc knowledge. Plus, his sofa is probably much more confortable than his pc chair ;)

Love, Exciting and New

Thanks for the kind words everyone.

Regarding PC games: If my timing works out, I'll have my PC built before my last show, so a chunk of Episode 70 could be a huge PC game blowout.

Some of you may not know this, but PC game discussion quite literally drains Brad of his life force. If we talk more than three minutes about PC's, he goes comatose. More than five minutes, it's grave time. He does the show hooked to an IV drip, with a nurse standing by, just in case we get carried away.

(I may have that reversed; that he's hooked to the nurse and it's the IV drip that's standing by??? Not sure. Same difference, I guess.)

sad

Tim, i'm so sad you are leaving. Since this is anonymous, I can admit that while I was at work today listening to the last bit of your latest podcast, I almost started crying when I found out you were not going to be hosting any more. I guess I a kind of secret admirer. I'm sure my wife will be glad when I'm not talking about the poscasts all the time now but there will be a hole in my life. I got so excited to see a new podcast up yesterday. I check everyday since the last one (even though I know they are only about once a month)...
best of luck and I'm sure whatever choice you make will be good for you.

thanks for all the goodness over the years. made my life a little better and more fun.

Bonne chance!

It is a sad day for all fans as we will soon watch you leave. I must admit I was shocked by the news but obviously there's no turning back. So now is the time to say a HUGE "Thank you!" to you, sir, for all your efforts and your unique presentation skills that have entertained people all over the world for three years.

It is now my turn to say - Good night and bonne chance, Tim!

getting into podcasting

It's funny how what paynemeister said completely applies to me as well. I had no interest in podcasts whatsoever before giving the latest Gamecritics show a shot last summer. The honest and (mostly) mature discussion of video games on the side was what piqued my interest, but Tim's excellent (and funny) hosting sealed the deal! I've been totally hooked since and recently got through your entire archive. You will be sorely missed, Tim.

As a side note, I cannot help but second Brad's plugging of the Cane and Rinse podcast. If you don't mind massive spoilers, it's the one other podcast I found that comes close to matching Gamecritics in sheer listening enjoyment.

While Tim leaving the show

While Tim leaving the show certainly is a loss to everybody, why can't any of you step in as "host"? I think Richard should try it. It could be amazingly awkward and unintentionally funny.

Also, know that I would be excited to offer myself as a host for the podcast if english was my first language.

But seriously, do you think you will find a suitable new host among your twelve listeners? Surely you do have a backup plan?

Flo wrote: While Tim

Flo wrote:

While Tim leaving the show certainly is a loss to everybody, why can't any of you step in as "host"? I think Richard should try it. It could be amazingly awkward and unintentionally funny.

Also, know that I would be excited to offer myself as a host for the podcast if english was my first language.

But seriously, do you think you will find a suitable new host among your twelve listeners? Surely you do have a backup plan?

I agree. I thought straight away one of you guys should do it. However you guys all write quite alot on this website so I wouldn't want that to be affected. But maybe asking someone new to come in and be the host is a bit much. I enjoyed Daniel Weissenberger's contribution in the end of year special podcast, so he would be a good new addition. If it was just a new contributer as opposed to a new host I would gladly throw my hat in!
Gareth

Flo wrote: While Tim

Flo wrote:

While Tim leaving the show certainly is a loss to everybody, why can't any of you step in as "host"? I think Richard should try it. It could be amazingly awkward and unintentionally funny.

Exactly my thinking too! Just imagine Richard constantly correcting the logic of everyone involved!

But really, I think Richard could give it a shot. He's buddies with Tim Spaeth anyway, so maybe he can be Tim's intern!

Mike Bracken

Mike Bracken wrote:

Zol,

Some people profess to have no trouble with the controls, others have numerous problems. I've no idea why that is, but I can say the controls gave me headaches for pretty much the entirety of the 50 hours I spent with the game. The thrust was the worst offender, but not the only one. I've wondered if it's a set-up thing -- some people have different lighting, are a different distance from their sensor bar, etc. I'm genuinely interested in this because I've seen radically different responses to the controls. I don't think for a second that everyone who's raved about them in some sort of Nintendo fanboy apologist, so I'm really curious as to what makes the controls work so well for some people when they worked so poorly for me.

And the other can of worms there is that I still feel that anything the game does with the Wii-mote could have been done as well or better with a standard controller.

As for the rest, it's a good sign you made it through the dreadful tutorial stages -- but there's some real tedium as you get to the 25+ hour mark (maybe even a little later). It's weird -- it's hard to quantify because it's more a feeling of redundancy than boredom, I think. The game just doesn't have enough fresh content to justify its running time for me. It feels extremely padded in the second half, where I'd have liked it a lot more as a 25 hour game where everything Link has to do still felt (relatively speaking) fresh.

Well, there's your problem Mike - and many other peoples.

The Wii Motion plus does *not* use the sensor bar - your not meant to be directing your controls at *that*. You were suppose to be pointing directly at the screen.

When the gamespot critic complained about the same thing in his review, he was roundly mocked for misunderstanding the controls.

I only found them occassionaly frustrating, and would have preferred to have played with it becasue they seemed to give me a needless arebobic workout.

Having said that, I also found the game generally underwhelming and needlessly protacted by annoying cutscenes and fetch quests - but the time warp sections and tear quests remain amongst my favorite gaming in recent memory.

Mike Bracken wrote: I'm

Mike Bracken wrote:

I'm really curious as to what makes the controls work so well for some people when they worked so poorly for me.

And the other can of worms there is that I still feel that anything the game does with the Wii-mote could have been done as well or better with a standard controller.

As for the rest, it's a good sign you made it through the dreadful tutorial stages

Yeah, I have no idea why people have such wildly different reactions to the controls. Maybe it is a setup or lighting problem, as you say.
In the past, I've also head things like wireless headphones interfere with the Wiimote signal, so maybe that plays a role as well.

As for using a standard controller instead, well, flying and swimming certainly don't need motion controls, but I don't know if the directional sword fighting could have been done as well (such as it is) without motion sensing.

Guilty confession: I kinda enjoy flailing around like an idiot sometimes. Helps me relieve stress.

Anecdote: my wife laughed at me when I enthusiastically pointed the Wiimote at the ceiling to ready a Skyward Strike (I love those!). She thought it was cute. I felt sorta embarrassed.

I'm currently about 20 hours in, just started the 4th dungeon, so I'm probably getting close to the dreaded parts you speak of.
To be honest, I did think it was kind of cheap to send me back into the depths of the first dungeon just to collect some damn water, so perhaps this is the start of the downward slope, I dunno.

On the other hand, I sat through Wind Waker's absolutely ridiculous Triforce Hunt (now THAT was tedium!) and Majora's Mask's constant redoing of, well, pretty much EVERYTHING, so I can probably bite through this sour apple as well (is that a phrase?).

Ouch

Well this is gutting news. Tim Spaeth IS the podcast! I don't see that you guys can possibly replace him. His wit, energy and professionalism are what makes the show stand out from its rivals. It's clear he puts an enormous amount of time into creating the show and - despite his many self-effacing comments - has a rich gaming past and a lot of wothwhile things to say as a critic. I'll miss him terribly.

Although, try getting John Teti.

Sad to see you leave Tim

Gosh, Tim, I'm so sad to see you leave. With that said, good on you for prioritizing life, and best wishes in your future (non-GC podcast) endeavors. Loved your work!

Good luck, Tim

Sad to see that you are leaving, Tim, but do what you must. All good things have to come to an end at some point.

Gamecritics was the first podcast I started listening to. I was drawn to it from Bioware's forums after DA2, and was delighted to see criticism where I don't have to wonder if there are forces in the background stopping the reviewer from expressing his true opinion.

Anyways, Tim, you are an excellent host. What you lacked in the actual game criticism you more than made up with your ability to control the flow of the discussion and keep those wackos in check.

Also, I demand that before you leave we will get to hear Richard's birthday song remix!

Tim

I wondered to myself today whether Tim was actually quiting or that he was actually forced out by the guys because of his fondness for Assassin's Creed...
I definately thought it was inappropiate.
Gareth

paynemeister wrote: I

paynemeister wrote:

I enjoyed Daniel Weissenberger's contribution in the end of year special podcast, so he would be a good new addition.

Seconded. I enjoyed Dan's contributions every time he was in, especially when he's adamant about things, like Deadly Premonition. Make him a regular already.

Also, you should really try to get more guests from outside gamecritics on the show. Not every time of course, just to shake things up once in while. The more genuine discussion there is, the less you need a dedicated host.

Cane and Rinse

Daniel Markstedt wrote:

As a side note, I cannot help but second Brad's plugging of the Cane and Rinse podcast. If you don't mind massive spoilers, it's the one other podcast I found that comes close to matching Gamecritics in sheer listening enjoyment.

Just listened to 2 episodes. Thirded.

Too bad they don't keep the older episodes though, only 3 or 4 available now.

Daniel Weissenberger

Daniel Weissenberger is clearly the people's choice and the people's champion.
Gareth

"The Wii Motion plus does

"The Wii Motion plus does *not* use the sensor bar - your not meant to be directing your controls at *that*. You were suppose to be pointing directly at the screen."

It doesn't matter though -- the motion sensor is right on the TV -- it's not like anyone's "aiming" at it in the first place. As if the Wii-mote were precise enough to even "aim" at anything other than a generalized direction... :p

I never once aimed at the sensor bar -- and none of that changes the fact that these controls still don't work for some people. There's clearly something going on here -- and it's not "you're playing it wrong."

I dunno -- the flailing

I dunno -- the flailing around bugs me. First off, I play games to relax, and having to spazz out to make my onscreen avatar work feels like the complete opposite of relaxing. Second, it feels like the next gen equivalent of button mashing in a fighting game.

As far as where you're at in the game, yeah -- you're starting to enter the valley of backtracking. I mean, to be fair, it's not going back through the exact same things, but it is doing more of the same over and over again.

I'll be curious to hear what you make of it.

Good luck, Tim.

Really sorry to hear you're leaving, Tim; you've presented the show with great style and panache. As others have mentioned, you (and the other gamecritics) have a really good body of work to look back on over the past few years. Thanks for providing all the entertainment, and good luck.

Tim can't leave the show.

Tim can't leave the show. He's the voice of reason here. The only gamer who constantly questions the amount of hours he spends gaming. He is the guiltiness we have inside - the consciousness of the show.

And the sexiest voice EVER.

Tim, please, don't do it.

ckz wrote: Tim can't leave

ckz wrote:

Tim can't leave the show. He's the voice of reason here. The only gamer who constantly questions the amount of hours he spends gaming. He is the guiltiness we have inside - the consciousness of the show.

And the sexiest voice EVER.

Tim, please, don't do it.

Agreed. 6 out of 5.

We want Dan! We want Dan!

We want Dan! We want Dan!

Don't be silly

Don't be silly, Dan (and Richard) are too pedantic to host a podcast. The whole thing would grind to a halt while they pointed out some fallacy.

Dan (and Richard) - no offence.

I'd like to see more of Dan as a guest though. His written articles here this year have been sublime.

More Rhea

More Rhea would be nice too. Just saying.

Josh wrote: Well this is

Josh wrote:

Well this is gutting news. Tim Spaeth IS the podcast! I don't see that you guys can possibly replace him. His wit, energy and professionalism are what makes the show stand out from its rivals. It's clear he puts an enormous amount of time into creating the show and - despite his many self-effacing comments - has a rich gaming past and a lot of wothwhile things to say as a critic. I'll miss him terribly.

I have to agree, Tim is the show. While I'm sure there are many great hosts out there to take over, the whole tone, direction and feel of the podcast will change.

I agree 100%. Without Tim

I agree 100%. Without Tim it's not the Gamecritics podcast.

Tim would always represent the outsider of the group, give some perspective and a different point of view from the professional critics. Also, the laughs I'm getting from his tone is the main reason I listen to this podcast.

Having Dan as a regular would certainly balance the loss, but still I don't know if th podcast can survive the loss of its host.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Code of Conduct

Comments are subject to approval/deletion based on the following criteria:
1) Treat all users with respect.
2) Post with an open-mind.
3) Do not insult and/or harass users.
4) Do not incite flame wars.
5) Do not troll and/or feed the trolls.
6) No excessive whining and/or complaining.

Please report any offensive posts here.

For more video game discussion with the our online community, become a member of our forum.

Our Game Review Philosophy and Ratings Explanations.

About Us | Privacy Policy | Review Game | Contact Us | Twitter | Facebook |  RSS
Copyright 1999–2010 GameCritics.com. All rights reserved.