MAP Episode 44: The First Christmas

This is so good that I may use it every year. We'll see!
The staff of celebrate Christmas.

Download Link: Produced 2009.12.20

Still reeling from the shock of the worst podcast ever, Lusipurr is determined to maintain a fascist-tight grip on the reins, but he fails to reckon on the additional combined might of two Canadians. Listen as Lusipurr slips ever deeper into depression!

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This week, we should like to congratulate Julian ‘SiliconNoob’ Taylor for winning the lucky draw in our Dragon Age: Origins contest! Julian wins a copy of the game for his platform of choice, or a gift certificate to GameStop (or his local gaming retailer). Congratulations, and thank you to everyone who entered. We’d love to give games to every loyal reader, but the nature of a contest means that only one person can win. That’s what a contest is, after all!

Finally, enjoy your holiday and travel safely. Bust open those presents, collect ‘phat lootz’, and eat plenty of good food. Happy Christmas from the staff of!


  1. – NATE LILES needs his own fanfare music

    – To be fair to Alicia in VC’s opening, Welkin looks a little sketchy

    – MAP – Only podcast where panelists admit to browsing hentai sites while recording

    – As I was listening to the episode, somebody actually posted a link to the source of Ethos’s Alicia hentai picture on a forum I was browsing (not a forum that’s in any way hentai-related, honest). I won’t repost it here for, you know, decency’s sake, but I just thought the story was funny.

    – Ginia’s actually the real-life sequel to James and the Giant Peach, Ginia and the Giant Potato

    – Sadly, I’d be counted as an “active” Playstation Home user, since I accidentally clicked on the icon when I meant to click the store the other day. It made me feel dirty.

    – @Ethos RE VC Voice Acting: Switch to the Japanese voice track. The dialogue’s still as cheesy, but at least it’s all in your head instead of being spoken out loud. Only down side is you have to deal with Hans in Japanese (who really isn’t that much worse than Hans in English :F).

    – I’m not as big a Lost Odyssey fan as Lusipurr, but if your party members are to the point where they’re not getting good amounts of experience, you should be able to take on whatever boss is around the corner, I’d think. I played through the game with a pretty moderate amount of grinding and didn’t really have any difficulties until the final boss, and even that was more “I wasn’t properly prepared” than “I wasn’t properly leveled.”

    – I think Engi’s the only TF2 class that hasn’t gotten their update yet. I’m hoping Valve just throws balance completely out the window and give him a portable attack drone that follows him around as a flying kill bot.

    – Best rendition of the Pokemon theme yet.

  2. Engy has actually been upgraded a few times, though not in terms of a full “class” update.

    Originally, the Engy could only upgrade turrets. In a major update a while back, dispensers were made upgradeable, and then so too were transporters.

    More recently, the Engy has had transporters upgraded (or tweaked, rather) so that a sapper can be broken from either end of the transporter–but both ends are sapped when a sapper is placed. This means the engy doesn’t constantly have to run back to spawn to rebuild transporters.

    Re. LO, same here. I didn’t grind at all–I just never ran from any battles–and I found the game had a level of difficulty which I would characterise as Easy to Moderately Challenging. The beginning was much harder than the end until the final boss.

  3. If I measure a present I have for Christmas could people try to figure out WTF it is for me? Evilpaul is impatient. :(

  4. Capital! An Xmas present from the good people of! I am in good cheer!

  5. evilpaul needs to learn the art of the unwrap and then carefully re-wrap.

    Steam the tape off, bro!

  6. Okay… to get the pronunciation of Alicia out of question, it is (A-lee-sha). I know this… or should know this… because this is exactly how my fiancees’ name is spelled and pronounced. We are from NY, not detroit, so take it as it is.

    Also, Congrats SN!

    And, I am currently playing through Final Fantasy XII in my solo quest to play through all Final Fantasy’s before XIII. Started yesterday, and ended at the demon wall. :) Anyone is welcome to join me

  7. Aren’t you supposed to run from the first time you meet one of those and then kill it on the second? It’s been a while since I played FFXII.

  8. I’m not sure if you can run from it… I think if you do run from it you can’t get the Demonsbane. Either way, I beat her down. Took a few quickenings, and 3 concurrences. The second time you face her, it’s a bit easier.

  9. @Squall: Believe it or not, some people pronounce Alicia as “Uh-lish-uh”, which is how our raid leader pronounces her own name. Far be it for me to tell her that her name isn’t pronounced that way.

    As for the Demon’s Wall in FFXII, you can run from the first wall and fight the second. You get the Demon’s Bane for defeating the first wall, but you can do this at any point thereafter. You do not have to do it when you first encounter the wall in the temple.

  10. @Lusipurr- Name pronunciation is based on the parent that names the said child, and their upbringing. Personal branding is important :) But all I’m saying is that the general pronunciation is either (ah-LEE-sha) or (ah-LEE-see-ah)

    I condone people that go against english pronunciation rules. I find most of those people rather interesting, they tend to go against the common grain with many ideas.

  11. All this bickering about the pronunciation of Alicia is pointless. Now let’s take cicada for example, how would you pronounce that?

  12. @Squalldane That is really funny you would say that because I found on the wikipedia entry for cicada that you had edited the order in which the pronunciations are displayed.

    “(cur) (prev) 18:45, 28 September 2009 Squalldane (talk | contribs) (29,249 bytes) (undo)”

  13. Just to back Lusipurr up, there are many Alicias who pronounce their name “uh-lish-uh”

    In fact, around here almost all of them pronounce it that way. Methinks it’s largely a southern thing.

  14. I think the number of sales for FFXIII just got to 1.5 mil in japan. What can we say? The Japanese love there Lady Clouds.

  15. Yeah, it’s only in Tennessee, you hick.
    But that’s good to hear about the Demon Wall! Lusipurr is a walking, talking, abusive Final Fantasy FAQ.

    @EnragedRobotParrot – Great name.

  16. The Alicia I know currently lives in Missouri(?), but is from the ‘South’ (in general), so it may be a Southern thing as Oliver points out.

    I am possessed of comprehensive knowledge regarding Final Fantasy, British History, Tea, Opera & Classical Music, and English Poetry/Literature. On all other topics I am completely useless. I can’t even tell you the day of the week, which is why I use .

  17. @Lusipurr: I say you tell her she’s pronouncing her name wrong.

    @EnragedRobotParrot: I pronounce is “steve.”

    @Oyashiro: Yeah, I saw that, but for some reason it seems like “people on the internet” (more a vague feeling I get than anything backed up by actual facts) are really enraged at FFXIII for some reason. I’m hoping it’s just the usual fanboy backlash that happens at pretty much any major release.

  18. Yeah, I found a list of criticisms that have me worried if some of them are actually true that people have complained in Japan about.

    The whole game is completely linear (Basically walking in a line) until halfway through [approximately 20 hours in].

    There are hardly any towns.

    The party is always fixed.

    The whole game just repeats the movie-battle sequence over and over [In fact the progression is closer to movie-run-battle-run-movie-boss-movie-run-battle…].

    There are rather a lot of movies.

    Moving around is like a long marathon.

    The whole game system is just a clone of bad parts of FF10.

    You can’t flee battles [You can’t avoid most battles either as there is no sneaking past enemies, including weak ones].

    Your party is completely healed after each battle.

    If the main character in your party dies it is game over [There are only ever 3 characters in battle, often less, and often fixed].

    The best tactic is almost always endlessly attacking. There is next to no strategy or skill involved.

    The summons’ transformation scenes are a joke [i.e. Odin turning into a horse].

    The story is rubbish… [Spoilers omitted, but complaints centre on Snow’s constant and cringe inducing insistence that he is a hero and will “protect” whatever it is the antagonists are menacing this time]

    Shopping is only done at “online” shops on save points, with no proper shops to be found.

    However, this doesn’t matter as you hardly ever get any money [and you can never buy anything more powerful than what you already looted].

    There have been next to no changes from the demo.

    The status screen displays no real information.

    There are only 8 items usable in combat [For that matter, there are hardly any weapons or accessories, and the “crafting” system mostly consists of spending drops to upgrade their 2 stats].

    There are no levels.

  19. – Everyone in Australia loves NATE LILES! And all the attractive women want to baby him!

    @Oyashiro- Thanks, I owe it all to you! :D

    @oyashiro- Yeah, I bet Lusipurr would be able to tell you just how eagerly I am looking forward to the FFXIII devs picking my party for me, and deciding who my main character will be. Presumably this means that at some point we will all have to use Hope as our main character. I’m also pretty damn lukewarm on their re-use of chapters like in X-2.

    – Also I heard that when you want to go to the equip and stutus screens there’s always a several second FMV which plays.

    – My name is John Trust! Julian Taylor is my slave name!

    – Whenever I see FFXIII media I get a fierce urge to play FFX!

    – I don’t think it’s a terribley good idea for the next Batman game to re-visit Arkham Assylum.

    – Oddly enough I think I stopped playing Lost Odyssey about where NATE LILES did, there’s a patch around the start of the 3rd disc where the game just seems to run out of steam, though ironically I was nearly past that bit when I stopped. I picked it back up a few days ago and had a good bit of fun with it, though now my rapidly declining 360 seems to be hanging like the sword of Damocles above my head … :/

  20. @Lusipurr- Either way is fine for Alicia, the Canadians are just looking to put the shoe on the other foot, contrary creatures that they are.

  21. I had a dream one night, and in it… I was instructed to enter in my internet browser.
    Upon waking I hurried to my computer to boot it up…I was excited. I thought perhaps god, or some higher power, had given me the clues, during my slumber, to the answers I sought.
    I was misguided and have since decided to end my life. What cruel trickery is this…
    (Valkyrie Profile 2 sucks ass..a waste of 7 dollars.. time to get hazy)

  22. Looking for answers at is a bit like trying to find the meaning of life by shoving fistfuls of shit down your own throat.

  23. The answers are always the same; hit up NATE LILES! If only she had heeded the one piece of advice that mattered, Britanny Murphy might not have died an unsatisfied and mediocre actress. Remember ladies, hit up NATE LILES!

  24. I should have listened to NATE LILES! Ladies, if you are listening, don’t be like me, hit up NATE LILES! today!

  25. I actually thought it would be a good name for a porno site.
    Where in the world is Carmen San-Diego. She sure as hell slipped off the map for a while.

  26. Any of you guys heard of this…

    I know it’s probably not a game that would be on your radar. Looked interesting to me though.. Probably just more crap like everything else… except NSMB Wii.. Can’t hate on that game..

  27. I have two complaints about NSMB Wii actually.

    1) Why did we have to wait so long for a decent 2D Mario game?
    2) Why isn’t there an option for old-school alternating play? I prefer it to the simultaneous crap.

  28. I haven’t researched Funcom, and frankly never heard of any other games from them…however, this game I’m keeping an eye on. (not holding my breath though)

  29. FFXIII pushed the sales of Japanese PS3s up to 245,000 this week! (most are probably FFXIII bundles)

  30. I like NSMB. This one was for the true fans. They had so many throwbacks to earlier titles scattered throughout..
    Not too many from mario 2, except the stacked cactus(cacti, whatever) in the desert.. I might try Mario Galaxy next…

  31. @BM: Funcom has the word FUN in their name, how could it possibly go wrong!?

    Mario Galaxy is fun, and a very good 3D platformer, but it just doesn’t have that ‘Mario’ feel that has been missing (until now) since Super Mario World came out.

    @SN: Thank you! The numbers for those weren’t out when we recorded, but I’m pleased to see that a quarter of a MEEEEELION PS3s were sold this week–quite considerable as there were about 4M PS3s in JPN homes before this week.

  32. The End of Eternity demo is pretty cool. The battle system runs really smooth. If there is one thing Tri-Ace can do well is battle systems. But now that they are free from SE vice-like grip I have high hopes for this and will be picking this up come time it is released.

  33. @Oyashiro- Well, that should be an extra 20 years right there! The UNDERBOOB takes a dim view on extreme Wii ownership!

  34. ugh, took way too long to start downloading this. anyway, congrats on winning the contest NooB.

  35. -first thing Lusi said made me laugh.

    -jesus heathen slapping christ that guy has range…

    -25% of japanese PS3s…

    -I already signed up on the 16th. Sqeenix said they would release information on a later date so just keep checking your e-mail.

    -after having to buy the first $600 PS3 I have no sympathy for Ginia.

    -Ethan is an idiot. the voice acting in VC is fine.

    -“the more I play VC the more I want to play FF XII”. wow, I thought that was just me.

    -my friend walked in on me listening to ya’lls rendition of of pokemon. I hate you all.

  36. I must be going mad, I could have sworn that Vagrant Story had quick select buttons for weapon changes … ?

  37. @SN: I don’t recall there being quick weapon switches. I’d have to fire it up to check, though, and I’m far too lazy to do that.