TSM Episode 104: Murder at the Exposition

'I felt a great disturbance in the industry; as if millions of Xbots suddenly cried out in terror, and were suddenly silenced.'
Sony’s press conference made an impact upon Microsoft.

Download: Produced 2013.06.16

The Electronic Entertainment Exposition for the year 2013 has drawn to a close, and Lusipurr.com has in-depth coverage of what happened on the show floor. Lusipurr and SiliconNooB examine the winners and losers, and make their predictions for the future.


  1. Great show, as always. I was particularly looking forward to this one, following the events of E3. A few thoughts, in no particular order.

    -Again, I don’t grasp the disdain for Titanfall. It looks fun, which I am told is the appeal of gaming. Indeed, one not need be a CODpiece Dudebro to enjoy the concept of giant robots in conflict. I express interest in Monolith Soft’s ‘X’ for similar reasons.

    -The Triple A model of gaming is indeed broke. But I also find a great deal of enjoyment in those titles that make good use of those budgets. Final Fantasy XV I am hopeful will be counted among those. I’d like to see a gaming scape where both exist without harming the consumer, or compacting the industry as it has been. I’m sure there’s a proper balance to be found.

    -Cliff Blezinski is a complete tool, and almost a walking embodiment of everything I find distasteful about the 00s era of gaming. I lack words for my disdain for his presence in this industry.

    -I am not very familiar with Penny Arcade’s position on anything, barring what’s contained in the strips. I avoid the editorials primarily because Tycho’s long-winded rants strike me as tiresome demonstrations of his love of a thesaurus.

    -Don Mattress’ 360 statement was mind boggling. More than on par with Adam Oerth’s ‘deal with it’ statement. The same sentiment, in fact. Just with a smile.

    -I am curious as to what Nate Niles has to say on the matter of the Spybox.

  2. @Wolfe

    My issue with Titanfall is that it looks like a porridgy COD clone. I’d like to see innovation, not more of the same (now, with bells on!).

    Cliffy B.’s ego has grown whilst his influence has waned. In another decade, we’ll have to lock him in an asylum.

    99% of what Tycho writes is absolute garbage. That said, he does manage to turn the odd phrase on occasion. And, when he’s not smugly patting himself on the back for his assumed literary sophistication (which is actually quite ordinary, and I would know!), he does manage to make incisive appraisals of the industry. Unfortunately, all of this is buried under a layer of unflappable self-assurance which has been backed by large sums of money. As a consequence, Penny Arcade gets worse by the day. At the risk of sounding ‘hipster’, it was a lot better when it was a smaller enterprise that wasn’t a full-time, well-paid, highly-visible job.

    Don Mattrick is literally the embodiment of smug hubris.

    Nate Liles is now required to try and dissuade you from speaking about the Xbone. Would you like to buy a PlayStation 4 instead?

  3. @Lusipurr: Titanfall looked a lot like a run and gun with giant robots to me. Much in the same way I regard your average JRPG as standard fare anime tropes with repetitive combat. Yet I still find enjoyment in those tropes and familiarity. Thus why I continue to buy them, even when I don’t wind up enjoying them like I’d hoped. Looking at you, Ni no Kuni.

    Agreed on both Penny Arcade, and Mattress Man.

    Nate Liles is truly doing a service for the good of humanity in selling the PS4, whether or not it’s mandated by corporate overlords. I would indeed like to purchase a PS4, thank you good sir.

  4. @Lusipurr – Some sentiments that the hipsters stole have legitimate origins. Better to just make good points and roll with the punches when people accuse crossover points as being false proof of something.

    Also, your good point of “…when he’s not smugly patting himself on the back for his assumed literary sophistication (which is actually quite ordinary…)” is unfortunately common on account of how common literary crudeness is.

  5. I’m sure Titanfall looks great if you’re into CoD clones, but it’s a CoD clone, and it does not appeal to me on that basis.

    Montok is bound to like it.

  6. Titanfall is the very game that may net Microsoft some more Xboners. A large portion of the 360 audience were Montokian dunces that work themselves into a frenzy over every new FPS. While Titanfall may appear to be run and gun right now, wait until its intended audience has it. CoD’s gameplay lends itself to the run and gun mentality, until douche dicks find a nice corner to hide like a goblin who has stolen something.

  7. Well, I’m not into CoD, so it goes without saying I’m not into it’s clones. I am however into giant robots, which this clearly contains. Don’t know who Montok is, but I suspect it’s not a very flattering suggestion that he’d enjoy it. That said, I will likely enjoy it when it gets a PS4 release and play it right alongside my clone of Kingdom Hearts; Venice Mafia Crystal Edition.

  8. @Gyme: Easily remedied by the fact that I only play these games in single player mode or in the same room with a friend. The online arena experience is not my forte.

  9. Is it? Ack, it is. Well, that just put an end to my interest in it, I’m sorry to say. At least there’s still X to look forward to, I guess. But that requires a Wii U and I can’t justify that purchase. Well, thanks for the heads up.

    As to Montok, yikes. Is that a prominent gaming figure, a notorious COD player, or perhaps just one of the many people I’ve heard have been fired from here on the show?

    And again, in regards to Titanfall: Dang. I was really hoping for some giant robot fun on the PS4.

  10. Sorry to further burst your bubble, but Titanfall has only been announced for Xbone, 360, and PC. No PS4, unless Microsoft threw money at Respawn to delay that announcement.

  11. When the devs were asked, they said that a PS4 version was ‘possible’ and that they ‘could not rule it out’. They’d be mad not to do a non-MS release.

  12. X does look amazing. That combined with the Nintendo platformers being released this year pose a real risk of turning the Wii U into a justifiable purchase, in conjunction with a price cut, of course. Probably the one thing still stopping me is the uncertainty of how well Nintendo will continue to support such a low-selling system [the stench of failure can be fatal].

  13. I believe much would be forgiven with a price cut; I’d be keen to buy one with a reasonable revision of price and hardware, and I expect many others would agree.

  14. Agreed. A price cut would make the Wii U a lot more appealing. And a justifiable purchase for many people sitting on the fence. And yeah, X is that really awesome Wii U title that no one outside of RPG fans seem to be taking notice of. Which is a shame, because it looks spectacular in the few videos rotating for it.

  15. I, being the optimistic person that I am, had big hopes for White Knight Chronicles and it disappointed. Then I had high hopes for Ni No Kuni and was let down again. But the ONE hope that I always had and beyond all the odds actually came true was that Monolith would make a comeback with a widely acclaimed RPG. And I still haven’t gotten to play it because FUCKING Nintendo had to ruin everything by buying Monolith.

    So yeah. I have no doubts that X will be the greatest game ever.

    Nice taste in games Wolfe. My favorite robot game is still Xenogears but Zone of the Enders 2 is a close second. I hope they make ZOE3 for PS4.

  16. But Jahan, surely a PS3 alone is more than enough for anyone! I bet you were far too busy playing PS3 games to spare Xenoblade a second thought!

  17. The early trailers for White Knight Chronicles showcased a completely different game than what was released, so I have some sympathy for The Legendary Honma.

  18. I had the same crestfallen experiences you did with those same titles, Zoltan. And Mel is right, the WKC seen in early trailers was fabrication. I mark that game as the turning point for Level-5, which hasn’t provided us with much of anything worthwhile post-DQ VIII. Ni no Kuni similarly let me down, but at least can claim to be beautiful and well scored. Doesn’t forgive a vapid storyline and structure lifted right out of 1988 however.

    Oh, and one more thing. I understand your decision to stick with one console, Zoltan. I’ve thought of adopting the same policy in the past, rather than part with several hundred dollars I can’t afford just to play a title or two.

  19. I know Lusi likes to poop on DQ8, but I enjoyed it a lot, simple as it was. Very pretty, though, and very well voiced.

  20. DQ VIII was one of my fondest gaming experiences of the 00s, followed by Final Fantasy XII. It was a wonderful adventure, and I was very happy while playing it.

  21. I’m listening to the podcast now, and it was mentioned that an Xbone ban will make you lose access to your library. This statement was walked back recently, you won’t lose access to your library, even though initial statements made it seem that way. But who cares.

    And the point SN and Lusi bring up about shelf space being minimal due to a lack of used games for the Xbone was once one of my better assertions that no console manufaturer would be so dumb as to eliminate or restrict used games. Welp! Guess not.

  22. M$ also walked back their used game policy, before reiterating it at a later date – so who knows with them?

  23. Yeah, aside from what their saying, their lack of PR consistency is probably worse.

    It’s as if they truly and honestly thought no one would have a problem with this, so they didn’t prepare in the least for the hideous backlash. Not even a smooth and corporate “no comment at this time”, I mean the system isn’t even out yet. Instead, we get a bunch of double talk and absurd insistences that people NOT purchase the Xbone as an answer to consumer connectivity problems. They’re at the point where they need damage control for their fucking damage control.

  24. A PS3 is enough for me. If they had released Xenoblade on PS3, I would have sacrificed another game to play it. One system is good for me, overall. This one time I got really screwed, though.

    Wolfe, I share your taste in PS2 games.

    I hope Obama bans everyone for not buying a PS4.

  25. Jahan, I put it to you that you are the one screwing yourself.

  26. AAAAND in the flippiest flip that ever did flop, MS has undone most of their absurdities. No used game restrictions, no 24 hour authentication (except for once during startup… which make-a no sense to me), AND no region locks.

    And so, this has shaken up the prospects for this coming generation for a THIRD time. Now it’s looking more like this gen will mirror most of the previous, with two very similar consoles and all that brings with it (as was discussed in this podcast).

  27. Are you serious!? LAME! I wanted to see some insanity! Do what you did before, Microsoft!


    Hahaha. That’s the new nickname going around.

  29. LOL, it almost is a disappointment.

    This being the case, I still won’t support them. We’ve now seen their intentions, they were willing to carry these absurd money grubbing fever dreams to term instead of quashing them in the boardroom, and for that I feel obligated to neglect them. As should everyone else.

  30. They can backtrack as much as they want. We’ve seen what they’re about, and I had a taste of their poor hardware back during their early days. Kiss my ass, Microsoft. I’m sticking with Sony, and Nintendo.

  31. I look forward to SN’s news write up next time, it’ll be a fun read I’m sure.

  32. Yeah. It definitely will be. It will be a fun podcast, too. I would like to think that more people would act like Wolfe and Mel by turning away from Microsoft after witnessing their lack of respect for gamers’ rights but that probably will not happen. I’m sure the PS4 will sell more right from the beginning and perhaps all the way through the generation but it will probably be, like Mel said, similar to this generation. People aren’t willing to give up something they want just on principal but only if it directly affects them. Dem bitches gonna buy Xbones.

    Not me though. PS4 all the way. I might follow SiliconNoob’s suggestion and attempt to give up my one-system system if X gets crazy good reviews like Xenoblade did. But it’s going to be a long way down the road, if I actually do it.

  33. Zoltan, if you buy a Wii U then you can play both X and Xenoblade.

  34. That is true! And Windwaker HD. Sounds fun. We’ll see if funds permit.

    Brandon is correct. Don’t reward this behavior. Companies are in business to make money and not for any other reason. But if you are a game company, your business should be the business of giving gamers what they want not trying to take away their ownership.


    Reading that article really bothered me. They didn’t sound happy to please us at all which is supposed to be their business In the first place! Instead they sounded like they were complaining that they HAD to give us what we wanted. They said that they wanted to have the ability to have your games with you everywhere you go and I do not know what they are talking about. I was under the impression that your games are only with you when you visit one of the two or three friends of yours that have also owned an XBOX One for more than 30 days. Taking a game disc with me to a friend’s house has never been a difficult thing for me and I have to use public transportation! And anywhere other than those friends’ homes, your games will not even work. We were never going to have a game library that travels with us everywhere even with all their recently repealed DRM policies.

    So, yeah. I really don’t like their attitude, right now. This brings my rant to its conclusion.

  35. Oops. I posted that message above at OCR and then copied it. That’s why it says “Brandon is right.” Lusipurr knows who he is, though. He hired him on the spot to replace me. It’s been fun guys.

  36. Definitely a disappointment. I think all LCom denizens thought ahead to SN’s news post within an hour of hearing the news.

  37. I think the problem of having two consoles is further highlighted now by MS making its system playable. Two subscription fees means that for most avid gamer, principles aside, owing more than one major console is simply undoable. This gen its going to be “pick a side and stick to it” from day one. In my view this will only serve to fracture the consumer base even further, which in turn may incentivize multiplats even more.

    I used to believe that owning only one console limited you to what was on offer. Now it’s more a move of necessity. Frankly, worth it or not, an extra 60 a year to fully participate in an already expensive hobby is itself a good amount to ask for.

  38. Another article I read said that Microsoft still has plans for an all digital future. It’s just as Lusipurr said. They want to move into an always online system.

  39. Ultimately that is where everything is headed, the timing isn’t right at the moment. But that day is a certainty.

  40. Any thought on my question lads??
    Nice show as usual too :)

  41. I remember when they used to offer addressing reader comments on the podcast… and they would always forget the next week. Don’t worry, the tradition seems alive and well! :P

  42. Microsoft’s point-blank refusal to confirm that the DRM-free used games policy is here to stay for Xbone should worry everyone interested in that device. It seems evident that this is a tactic being used up-front to compete, but that once consoles are in homes (and xboners feel compelled to defend their purchases a any cost, in spite of any logic), they will probably say, ‘by popular demand, we’re bringing back our family sharing plan, but that necessitates DRM and no more used games!’

    I wouldn’t trust them as far as I could pitch them.

  43. I had this discussion with a friend when I told him, and his reaction was the same. He believes it’s a tactic to get the systems into homes so they can later reverse their reversal. I’d like to say that sounds too bendy a tactic for MS, that usually these giant companies aren’t so flexible, but that notion has been proven wrong of late. Part of me still thinks doing so would be absurd, and that they won’t do it. But mounting evidence shows it’s possible. If forced, I’d put it at a 60/40 that they stay the course from here on out.

    Something else to note is that all of this nonsense happened within the span of a month, and it will go very largely over the average consumer’s head. Be that as it may, Sony still has the sticker-price advantage, and that advantage is strong. At the same time, it’s my impression that this current gen wasn’t very good to Sony. They made up for their lost ground in the end, but throughout it was a tough fight for taking back dominance. My point is, that maybe this has served to tarnish the name in the face of two identical consoles that differ in the eye of the consumer only in price. We shall see if the MS DRM debacle (coupled with the lower price point) will cause a significant number of people to jump to Sony and give them the lead throughout. But I’m still predicting a close fight– MS’s shear momentum versus Sony’s goodwill and value.

  44. Julian, it wasn’t about Runescape. Read the last podcast thread. I asked if everyone on the panel could say what their favourite backlog episode was!
    Lusi said it was a great idea, but seems to have forgotten. :L

  45. Who is this Second Stone and why is he so obsessed with getting us to play Runescape?

  46. @Dean Stone Knight: MAP Episode 104: “I Feel So Good” is all-around classic Lusipurr, SN, and Ginia bantering. I can’t name a favorite now, there’s so many.

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