Vampire Hunter D and Gundam The Origin

Vampire Hunter D (1985), the OAV that was Rym's first anime, and Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin, the fantastic manga, are the topics of tonight's GeekNights. Otakon 2015's attendance dropped substantially, and we speculate on what this means in light of near across-the-board drops for many other anime/fan conventions, nonetheless contrasted by growth in other cons like Anime Boston 2015.

When Services Die

When services disappear, they often disrupt. Tonight on GeekNights, we consider dead, dying, end-of-life, deprecated, and dilapidated services in light of Google blocking access to their unsupported auto-complete API and Nintendo dropping their Nintendo TVii service (if anyone even knew it existed). Windows 10 day is tomorrow (we're upgrading all of our devices). You should buy an SSD if you don't already run the OS on one, upgrade, then use the new install media to re-install on the SSD. Trust us. Windows 10 Home will force Windows Updates. This is a good thing. Oleogustus joins sweet, savory, sour, bitter, and umami as a fundamental tongue taste. Pentaquarks were observed in LHC experiments. Some people are failure canaries.

Come see us live at PAX Prime 2015! We'll be there in style!


Belts are the fascinating topic of tonight's GeekNights. Lately we wear these things. But first, you would do well to share your salaries with your friends. You will never escape ads, which are largely fraudulent, and may not even be morally justifiable.

Don't forget to come see a bunch of smart people (and also us) at the Primest of PAXes.

The Jackbox Party Pack

The Jackbox Party Pack is what impressed us enough to talk about it tonight on GeekNights. It fulfills the promise that Nintendo has so long ignored, and works surprisingly well using smartphones as 8-player game controllers. Shenmue III is actually happening thanks to a 6MM Kickstarter, and we expect to to be just like I and II. (It was a different time in those Dreamcast days). Professional Counter-Strike players flat-out admit to using performance enhancing drugs, and equipment failure issues at the EVO 2015 Street Fighter IV championship show the slow but steady progress of professional esport evolution.

GeekNights Live at PAX Prime 2015

GeekNights will be live at PAX Prime 2015! These constitute our 33rd and 34th consecutive panels or lectures at PAXes since 2008. Both are brand new never-before-seen experiences for senses.

The Far Future of Gaming
Sunday Aug 30 @ 1:00pm
Sphinx Theatre

Few industries, even on the bleeding edge, are able to make accurate projections even ten years into the future. At thirty years out, all bets are off. Games are no exception. Accelerating technology, evolving design, even entirely new mediums, spring suddenly into being. You probably have some sense of what the next few years hold for games. But what about the next 30? The next 100? Could gaming in 2015 have been predicted from gaming in 1985? What drives it? What will hold it back?

Rym DeCoster [Producer, GeekNights]
Scott Rubin [Host, GeekNights]
Luke Crane [Community Manager for Games, Kickstarter]
Catt Small [UX and Game Designer, Brooklyn Gamery]
Josephine Fu [Lead Game Producer, Date Nighto]
Emily Compton [3D Animator, What Pumpkin]

Sports are Games
Monday Aug 31 @ 4:00pm
Sphinx Theatre

Gaming live streams are some of the most popular television programs in the US. There are entire TV networks covering gaming that have existed for decades. Yet, many self-described gamers will eschew "Football" and "Ice Hockey" as being somehow distinct from "DOTA 2" and "CounterStrike." We even like to use the term "esport" to separate them from "sports." Sports and "esports" are fundamentally the same. American Football is frighteningly like a distributed turn-based strategy game.

Rym DeCoster [Producer, GeekNights]
Scott Rubin [Host, GeekNights]

Online Story-Driven Games
Wednesday Sep 2 @ 7:00pm

After PAX, don't forget that Rym will be lecturing at CHIFOO in Portland!

Posted: Sunday July 19, 2015

Why Five Nights at Freddy's is Scary

Five Nights at Freddy's is undeniably scary. While it relies on jumpscares, notice that it uses them not to scare you along the way, but more to condition you for much greater and sustained fright and paranoia. FNAF is a clever, well-designed, simple horror game that in many ways has redefined horror games as a genre.

What exactly makes Five Nights at Freddy's so scary? What game mechanics does it employ to do this?

Book Club - Watership Down

First published in 1972, Watership Down is a classic novel, well known and well loved, following the journey of several rabbits looking for a new home. Rather than anthropomorphize them, they are presented decidedly rabbitish. They don't wield swords or build towns: they're just rabbits, and they have a distinctly non-human sensibility and perspective. The works that have drawn (often heavily) from Watership Down are innumerable, and it's well worth a read.

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