MAP Episode 35: Microphone Misadventure

Nate 'Bup' Liles
He's ba~ack...

Download Link: Produced 2009.10.18

Lane makes his first appearance on the podcast and experiences first-hand the joys of Lusipurr’s many software problems. Meanwhile, Nate finally starts to play Final Fantasy VII, just in time for the end of Revisiting the Lifesteam. Argh!


  1. I also do not condone anti-islander propaganda. Some of us live on islands; it’s not the best thing in the world, but if the zombie apocalypse comes, we can just blow up the bridges. Fools.

  2. I wonder if the zombies would even rise on an island. Can an isolated population inbred for centuries rise as the undead?

    Forget islands: I suppose one needs only look to Alabama.

  3. So now the FF7 feature is over. It’s time for an FF8 playthrough! Now that’s a real challenge! I’m sure NATE LILES would agree.

  4. A Final Fantasy VIII playthrough is off the cards. If NATE LILES! dares to try and support such a venture, I will hide him in a bubble at the bottom of a well.

    Some other things you will never see at

    – A group playthrough of FABLE.

    – Enthusiasm for motion-controls.

    – Praise for shovelware.

  5. Never see *anymore*!
    I generally share the disdain for motion controls with a few notable exceptions. Flower and Excite Bots being the main ones.

  6. @Lane: The ending of the remake of Dawn of the Dead shows that even going to an island is NOT a good idea.

    I do have FF VIII on my PSP ready to play….

  7. -What if the zombie appocalypse starts on islands?

    -I have FFVIII on my PSP at the moment also, but I’ve been thinking of replacing it with IX.

  8. @Epyon – A Final Fantasy VIII play-through would prove to be entertaining, nonetheless. I, for one, would definetely enjoy hearing another curmudgeons corner :D


    Excellent MAP. Just a few comments —

    – FF7 remake will probably be on the 20th anniversary, since they have said they want to conclude on that year, 2017. One source that confirms this is the final fantasy wikia.
    – It is R1+R2 for FFVII’s chocobo racing
    – Mass Effect aiming on a console is easy mode. As long as an enemy is targeted, you will hit it. I’ve aimed a few inches off my target once, and saw their health bar draining
    – Wow has Mario, Luigi, and even Link in Un’Goro Crater. Also, Aerith in Dalaran :D
    – There is a sequel to Zone of the Enders, called The 2nd Runner. The game that Kojima is talking about could be a sequel of the sequel

  9. -An assignment got in my way of FFVII.

    -I don’t mind a bit of Chocobo racing, but the game required WAY too much of it.

    -Leave poor Nate alone!

    -FFVIII has like 10 magnificent tracks and a whole bunch of chaff.

  10. -There has been a lot of PS3/Mass effect talk recently because a Bioware employee accidently said it would probably come to PS3, and a Russian EA website listed it as coming to PS3 (since retracted).

    -The new Super Mario automatic mode should shame players in the same way as easy mode on Ninja Gaiden Sigma. Using auto mode should result in the character model of Mario being rendered with a feather sticking out of his arse for the remainder of the game, thus if friends and family walk in they instantly know to laugh at your inept mediocrity.

  11. @SN: Your idea for NSMBWii is perfect.

    – WoW does indeed have Mario, Luigi, Link, and Aerith. But it needs MORE, and it needs to have proper voice acting and character models.

    @SquallDane: The end of Final Fantasy fills me with dread. With only seven years to go until the 20th anniversary, I have serious doubts about the possibility of an FF7 remake within that timeframe.

  12. -I’ve never understood why people say that the 360 pad is better, it’s ugly and uncomfortable and entirely lacking in symmetry.

    -Brutal Legend is fantastic! Very charming game (with a little bit of glitchyness).

    -Twitter Twat.

  13. “you may notice some volume differences…”

    you don’t say, I say as my ears bleed. as a heathen programmer I took offense at this podcast but Lane was on so it’s okay.

    Lusi, you got any ideas for the next group playthrough?

  14. I like both the PS3 and 360 controllers for different games. The sticks on the 360 controllers feel way better, but the d-pad sucks and the Dualshock fits the hand better.
    I’m completely happy with either.

  15. Personally I prefer the stick on the PS3 Dual Shock in every circumstance. Its location feels far more natural to me: my thumb tends to feel cramped on the 360 controller because it is too near the left edge of the controller.

  16. @Breaka: Volume things were fixed after we finished recording.

    Some people may wonder why (when such things happen) we don’t fix it before recording the final version. The reason for this is that it took a lot of time/effort to get it to work at all. By the time we got to recording, it was already quite late. So, further delay just wasn’t acceptable.

    Next week things will be a lot better. There’s a silver lining to this unpleasant occurance: the new method I am using for recording the podcast is:

    – Higher quality
    – Easier
    – More professional
    – Safer (no chance of a lost podcast anymore)

    Incidentally, this is the method I wanted to use at the beginning, but being on a Mac I was forced to adopt a different method. When I switched back to PC, I continued to use the somewhat backwards Mac method that I had been using, rather than the way I wanted to do it in the first place. Now, that has all been solved.

    Continuing to suggest FF8 for the next playthrough will result in me banning EVERYONE. This is why we can’t have nice things.

  17. @Lusipurr – And you prefer the PS3, and I have an equal preference for the two consoles. It works out!
    I understand the symmetry argument, it’s just not the same for me.

  18. Lane’s a guy?! Ack, I need to stop sending him my nude pictures then! :x

    And Nate Liles is back so I assume this podcast is wildly racist? Off I go to listen!

    And for the record, I think enjoying or playing of FF8 should be a criminal offense punishable by Booting and being forced to wear the preposterous costumes of the dancers in the horrible Sorceress assasination scene for 90 days.

  19. Yes, Paul. Also, goodpaul needs to seek help. For the good twin, his fetish for vinyl and leather outfits is disturbing on many levels.

    On a related note, why does everyone assume “Lane” refers to a girl? Spelled in that form, it is derived from the Old English “lanu,” meaning a narrow country road. It’s also masculine. The feminine version of the name is Elaine or some variation thereof, although “Laine” is an appropriate feminine spelling.

    But enough with outdated gender codes on names. In a world of Stacy Keaches, who needs such an outdated system? Besides, you know, Indo-Europeans whose words have genders.

    I also support a Final Fantasy VIII playthrough, because I am evil beyond measure, truly cosmic in my fearsomeness.

  20. I apologize in advance for so much text. Apparently my brain was OVERFLOWING with thoughts while listening to the podcast, and it decided to share them with you all. I should just trim it down, but there’s no shortage of space on the internet, so I’ll keep it around :F.

    – I love you too, NATE LILES! (Oh, and my handle is pronounced like “turkey giblets”).

    – I can make children (with a little help). I can’t make a high-quality FFVII remake. Therefore, the remake is more valuable. Like Lusipurr, I’d commit atrocious, horrible crimes for a FFVII remake, especially after playing Crisis Core. Some day… Some day…

    – I actually prefer a controller to mouse/keyboard for FPS controls. It’s probably just because I play console games much more than I do PC games. The only time I’ve gone Controller vs. Keyboard/Mouse, it was in Halo and I came out on top. Granted, I’m not saying that would always be the case, but in my tiny sample, controllers beat mice 100% of the time :D. Oh, and trackballs are awesome, and it sucks nobody seems to make decent ones any more. I need to milk my current one for all it’s worth before it breaks.

    – 360 Facebook/Twitter are (I believe) their own separate apps, so there’re pretty much useless for my purposes. I usually check the social networks in the time I spend waiting for a game to initially load. If the features were build into the Xbox overlay (like the friends list or achievements), I’d probably fire it up and let the game load in the background. Since I can’t do that, I’ll probably never look at it. I’ve got a PC and an iPhone for checking social networks, anyway (although KDE 4’s plasmoids seem a bit lacking in that respect).

    – As a heathen programmer who’s done MANY MANY hours of research on the topic, according to the internet, women don’t wear clothes. I believe that game programmers have to put minimal bikini-armor on their models to appease the ESRB’s tyrannical ratings board.

    – Maybe game assist for NSMB:W is actually intended to benefit parents. Not parents who will actually play the game, just parents who want their kids to shut up. As the oldest of 5, I was often recruited by younger siblings to finish difficult parts of games for them. When I moved out, they started bothering my dad, who tried his best, but has never really played video games in his life. I think this feature is available so that parents will get the game for their children knowing (if it’s a well-publicized feature) that they can ignore their spawn for at least the next several hours.

    – Lusipurr, you just need to move further from the city to get more suburban-style towns. I have a proper house with my own car-hold and everything. Granted, my commute’s about 45 minutes each way, but I’ll survive. Unfortunately, the weather still sucks. Oh, and there are a few Meijer’s around, just not enough. We had one down at UIUC. I miss it :f.

    – I think one of the reasons the Dual Shock is to popular is because, by this time, everybody’s used to it. It’s an excellent controller design to begin with, but now anybody who’s owned a Playstation brand console is accustomed to the weight and stick positioning and everything already, so when they pick up a DualShock 3 for the first time, they feel right at home. Compare that with the MS or Nintendo brand consoles, which switch controller layouts every generation.

    – I started playing Kingdom Hearts: DN this morning. All I can say is THANK GOD (or programmer equivalent. Possibly Linux Torvalds) they let you switch to using the shoulder buttons to control the camera (it wasn’t instant. I DESPERATELY tried to switch ASAP, but you need to wait until they tell you on day 14 or whenever. Seriously, WTF?). I don’t know how they expect people to switching between using the stylus, using the face buttons, and using the D-pad all at the same time, and whoever thought up that default control scheme should be flogged. Not to mention, as far as I could tell, there wasn’t really an option for lefties. Other than that, loving the game so far. I’ve found I’ll really enjoy just about any cutscene set to “Passion.”

  21. @Evilpaul: The decidely masculine picture of Lane’s face on the main page might also have provided you with a clue to his gender!


  22. I vote for everybody else playing through FFVIII while I play through something else.

  23. That being said, I have a copy of Chrono Trigger DS that I need to play through at some point…

  24. It would be pointless, everyone would just stop playing around the ten hour mark anyway.

  25. Your Majesty King Lusipurr, he who fancies dogs and robotic fortune tellers, might I, a humble servant of the Lusipurrian Kingdom, appeal that any and all those foolhardy enough to say anything in FFVIIIs favor be beaten to death with bats. with spikes in it. laced with poison.

  26. You know … I just can’t get the image out of my head of EvilPaul cruising around on a Friday night picking up carloads of Lanes.

  27. I think we could set something like that up. Maybe photoshop a wig onto Lane’s avatar or something and have EvilPaul walking around with a gunblade.

  28. LOL the side quest can be that EvilPaul has been junctioning so many Guardian Forces that he’s forgotten what women look like. Thus his memory will need to be jogged with a highly contrived and implausable plot twist.

  29. Re: The controversial “player-assist” feature of NSMB Wii.

    I don’t quite follow the hate for this feature. Given Nintendo’s insistence on dumbing things down, I think this is the optimal solution (and although I think we can all agree that they have gone much too far in this direction, the theory of having any entry level console is not necessarily a terrible thing).

    The reports I have heard seem to indicate that this is challenging game, notwithstanding any crutch handed to the players. I would much rather this than a game like NSMB DS which had no system, but was quite easy. I cannot change the difficulty of that game, but I can choose to not use this new player assist feature. While I cannot fathom why someone would pay $50 to not watch rather than play a game, it affects me not at all if they do.

    Finally, with respects to the infinite lives of NSMB Wii, my first reaction to this is mild disappointment, however every Mario game after the first one pretty much had de facto infinite lives, as it was so easy to pile them up that I can’t remember ever actually running out.

  30. @SN: You mean the plot twist where it turns out he IS a woman?

    @Edge: Agree pretty much 100%. Not something I’m looking for in games, but if people want to use it, more power to them, I suppose.

  31. Everyone is banned forever for talking about FF8. That’s just how it has to be.

    @Edge: The hate is because this is the thin end of the wedge — or actually it’s just a wider part of the wedge. The thin end is games getting easier every year.

    What this does is reduce the gamer to a merely passive (not an active) participant. The game essentially becomes like any television program, where the participant simply sits and stares.

    If this is profitable (much like easy games are), the industry will lean more and more in this direction (much as it has done with easy games), and the result will be increasing amounts of the industry’s money spent on this bilge.

    In a more worrying way, this is also destructive. One of the things I have always liked about video games is that they are, by and large, beneficial to play. They improve critical thinking and abstract reasoning, along with reaction times, ability to focus on details, and so on. This movement generally undermines that–as does reducing the difficulty level of games.

    By keeping the bar high you force people to strive to achieve something they initially cannot. This results in an improvement of their skills. But by simply giving them everything the moment they reach their current limit, they never get any better. What has essentially happened with NSMBWii is that the idea of a person becoming more skillful by playing a game has gone out the window. Now there is no reason to improve: one wins regardless of whether one is capable of playing the game or not.

    At that point it’s no longer a game. Nor is it something anyone should be proud of or willing to accept, much in the same way you wouldn’t accept it if at the end of a baseball game, both teams were declared the winners–equals in every way–regardless of the score. Nor should you.

  32. @Lusipurr:

    I guess I would agree with the overall arch and direction of your thoughts. The best games do demand some committment from the player to improve, whether through improved technique, or better problem solving or lateral thinking – otherwise you do end up with nothing more than an interactive movie. This is why I prefer gaming to having my brain turned to mush by TV. That being said, I am sure that I will enjoy New Super Mario Bros. Wii more than the DS version for the sole reason that the developer found a way to compromise an increased difficultly with Nintendo’s stated mission of catering to the casual crowd.

    This movement towards giving a player a way out of the challenge doesn’t stop you or I from enjoying all the benefits you clearly lay out that playing a difficult game offers. If you are worried about society as a whole rather than just you and I, I would respond that the sorts of people who use these features would likely give up rather than continue on when faced with a stiff challenge and thus enjoy none of these benefits, rather than a few. The larger issue of a quick fix mentality by society as a whole is a genuine social problem that goes beyond gaming; a Nintendo platformer will not be the solution to it.

    The baseball analogy I would accept for direct competition between two players, however most platformers are you versus the digital code contained in the game. The only person being cheated is oneself. I don’t think any of us reading this site would entertain the possibility that we “won” the game if we bypassed half or even a tenth of the levels.

    As one final attempt at devil’s advocacy, is this feature any worse that GameFAQs? Is there anyone here who has never used that?

  33. I agree with Edge on everything except the gamefaqs comment. while you could use saves and the new game+ in some games to breeze through everything I don’t believe most games are beaten that easily. if your playing Dante Must Die mode and get a scythe shoved up your ass it really doesn’t matter that you know the exact amount of frames the reaper took to do it.

  34. @Breaka:

    Agreed – I wasn’t very clear on that (typed it too early in the morning). That was meant to be more geared towards RPGs or puzzle games, where is the challenge is figuring out what to do, rather than actually doing. As you point out, the analogy isn’t a very good one for platformers, so I humbly retract it.

  35. How did SiliconNoob know that Lane and I grew up in the same orphanage?

    We used to be such close friends until one day when we went to the mall to spend our allowances at Hot Topic and while we were there Lane was knocked unconscious by a box of belts falling upon him. I went to pull the mountain of belts off of him when I’m told I was knocked unconscious by several boxes of zippers.

    I didn’t remember until today when I was at a lighthouse by the beach listeing to the podcast. I believe it’s fair to say the Megaphones Ahoy podcast saved my childhood!

  36. “You know … I just can’t get the image out of my head of EvilPaul cruising around on a Friday night picking up carloads of Lanes.

    @Darth – you getting this? It’s going in.

  37. @Lusipurr/Bup – What if NATE LILES tried to ban NATE LILES? Who would emerge victorious?

    @Ethos/SN/EvilPaul – haha, this is an awesome idea, especially with the right writing behind it (we’d need some REASON for EvilPaul/Squall to be trolling for tranny-Lanes). It’s written down and I’ll see what I can do with it over the weekend. If my current line of thinking pans out, I may be able to have something in by early next week (not much, mind you, but a start).

  38. It’s because he’s junctioned so many GF’s that he’s forgotten what women looks like, and since he thinks that Lane is a girl’s name he spends his friday nights trawling for Lanes.

    -If NATE LILES tried to ban NATE LILES I think it might create a world destroying paradox.

  39. I’m starting the People’s Republic Army of Nate Liles. Our anthem will be the battle theme from FF8.

  40. One day we’ll all wake up to find that NATE LILES has turned into

  41. Luckily he’s not capable of making such changes, otherwise it would already have taken place.

    As an aside, I bet NATE LILES has never even played FFVIII.

  42. @Bup – I’m with you, man. While FF9 was my first FF, I only borrowed it from Blockbuster. So I was only able to get a quarter of the way through the first disc.

    Then, went out and bought FF7 (since it was so cheap), beat it. Followed by 8, 9, origins, anthology, chronicles, etc.

  43. -I’m amazed that NATE LILES was even game to play another JRPG after having FFVIII as his first, I suppose this is a testament to the virility of NATE LILES.

  44. As a resident of Pennsylvannia (yes, please offer me your prayers to Cthulu and pity) I can say for certain their are rapacious rednecks all over the place.

    We’re forced by the state government to grow corn on every property. Single room apartments in Philly are all required to have a pot with corn growing in it. We keep it because it can be used to distract the hordes of roving rednecks that try to rape you while going to the store to buy milk and bread. Which are most necessary supplies that must be secured immediately before every snow storm.

    Pennsylvannia: Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter Here

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