TSM Episode 265: The Best of All Possible Podcasts

...And this is the best of all possible alt-text.
This is the best of all possible captions.

Download: Produced 2014.03.30

The brilliant metaphysico-theologico-cosmolo-nigologist Lusipurr delivers himself of a lecture on Leibnizian Optimism to his receptive (if beery, and perennially inebriate) pupil, SiliconNooB, demonstrating that this is the best of all possible podcasts.


  1. The internet is designed so as to allow Lusipurr.com to exist upon it, and lo, Lusipurr.com exists. This truly is the best of all possible worlds.

  2. Am I to take it then, that I should reconsider XIV? You seem a lot more positive about it after this cast.

  3. I don’t think Lusi was ever negative about FFXIV since A Realm Reborn was released. The problem was that most of his friends still played WoW.

  4. I am already enjoying Candide and wish to hear it until its completion! It is a very appropriate reading. Have you considered Jonathan Swift? And I’ve long thought it would be amusing, although I think you would reject the prospect outright, if you read a few chapters of Joyce’s Ulysses.

  5. @Wolfe: My comments from the previous podcast thread still stand, save only my comment about the content, which has been massively increased. I was shocked upon my return to find oodles of content, and most of it manageable for people who play MMOs with less than religious zeal. Indeed, the major problem now would be that there is too much to do, so one will have to make choices.

    As Gyme points out, I’ve never been *negative* on FFXIV since the release of ARR. The problem is (and remains) that for an enjoyable experience, several things are necessary:

    – ACTIVE friends with whom one can play–that is, people who are playing the game all the time, so that when you log in, there are several people in your free company (guild) with whom you can do things.
    – An acceptance that the vast majority of content is gated for people who are at max level.
    – An acceptance that even at max level, a large portion of content is gated by other content, item level, difficult quest chains, etc.

    Having said all of that, I think that it is very rewarding to see the content, as it has been expertly produced and is designed to reward long-time, die-hard Final Fantasy fans. The use of remixed Final Fantasy III “Battle II” music in the Crystal Tower (the track is called ‘Tumbling Down’) for the final boss fight, for example; or the use of FF3 dungeon music as the Crystal Tower dungeon music itself.

    The boss fights are extremely clever. I’ve seen some incredibly innovative stuff in the past few days. I really enjoy running Crystal Tower, and have now run it about ten times in two days, and desperately want to do so again.

    I stress, however, that if all you want to do is ‘see’ content, there are better, cheaper, faster ways. Go to Youtube and watch it. These things require time and effort to do in the game; you need to get to L.50 and have gear for the job, and then know what to do. Those things, themselves, are easier said than done. It’s not prohibitively difficult, but at the same time, you can’t just walk in and see it.

    In short, if you want to ACTUALLY PLAY an MMO, then sure, FFXIV is probably your best choice for a subscription-based game right now. But if you want to just wander around looking, no; you will actually have to play it properly if you want to see the content.

  6. I’ve plowed through more than my share of JRPGs, with battle systems I rarely enjoy (including XII, my favorite of the series, but like you said of the battle system on this cast in fact, a game that plays itself) for the sake of admiring the world design. And in a rare couple of cases out of enjoyment of the story itself. So unless it’s as bad a system as what I found in White Knight Chronicles, I can manage. I thank you for the detailed response. Your opinion is far more valid than the reviews I’ve read in the past, as there is no question to your integrity.

  7. I could listen to people complain about how bad FFX is 24/7. I remember trying to play that abomination in 2003 when I finally got a PS2. It was a travesty. Did you really need to give them $ for the HD version to complain about it? Aren’t you just enabling X-3?

  8. I actually think the ‘battle system’ in FFXIV is pretty good–although, with MMOs, ‘battle systems’ tend to become much of a muchness, since you’re only controlling one character, and the way that character’s ‘class’ or ‘job’ plays (in real time) is largely going to be down to hitting buttons in the right order at the right time (to greatly simplify by ignoring the reasons why those buttons are hit).

    I think FFXIV’s system is much less complex than WoW’s, but without sacrificing any of the tactical choices or distinguishing features which make it interesting. It’s a streamlined experience with less fluff, but with some good customisation options. But, it very much plays second fiddle to the game itself. A class is, after all, like work pants. The *how* of it doesn’t matter nearly as much as what you do with it. It’s ‘role’ (Healer, Defence, Damage) which really matters. How that is done is almost an irrelevance.

  9. Good podcast. If Final fantasy becomes like KH I whouldn’t complain, since I like Action rpgs as much as rpg games .

  10. The battle system doesn’t look terrible for XIV, I’ll say that. The class orientation reminds me of D&D/Pathfinder, which is a point in it’s favor. I’ve no prior experience with a MMO though, and WoW has never held any appeal to me, so I’ll have nothing else to hold it up to. I’m mostly worried about my ability to find a social group. I have one friend who plays and has been hoping I’d join for a long time, but two men do not make a full party. And I have all the social class and talent that you’d expect from a reader of Lusipurr.com.

    On another note, I just happened upon a little article that you and your staff may find amusing, as the man in question is essentially restating conclusions you have already drawn:


    And I quote,

    “For example, in the past, when we developed console games with a worldwide premise, we lost our focus, and not only did they end up being games that weren’t for the Japanese, but they ended up being incomplete titles that weren’t even fit for a global audience.”

  11. @Wolfe: Ethos and I were discussing that interview/press release thing on Twitter today, and marvelling over how they have been able to miss what we have been shouting at them for YEARS.


    Intro Music?
    I’m a bit ignorant of classical music, no idea what this is, but I like it.

    This Week’s Panel
    The Static Duo
    Silicon Noob

    T20 Cricket
    If I’m forced to keep looking up Cricket news I may just end up learning about this bizarre game just by forced osmosis.

    IPLT20 Cricket

    FFX/X-2 Playthrough

    FF News
    Type-0 Fan localization

    XV Soundtrack

    XV Team changes

    PS1 Classics

    Ground Zeroes Sales

    Candide by Voltaire

    DiceAdmiral’s Gaming Moment
    Not much this week. Civ V should be wrapped up in the next session with only a few turns remaining.

  13. As someone that was in Candide, I have to say that Voltaire and Bernstein both have a very sharp sense of humor. The events that occur are pretty shocking the first time you read them and they just gloss over them like, “Oh, this horrible thing happened to that person…. for the best of all possible reasons. Moving on!”

    The music’s good, though.

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