Pokémon UNITE

Tonight on GeekNights, we review Pokémon UNITE: the Pokémon MOBA. It's actually pretty fun, and it's a shame that it's microtransactional pay-to-win garbage. Only play it if you can play with friends who agree to never spend money, never grind, and never use any items.

In the news, the NHL Expansion Draft has released the Kraken, Activision Blizzard is rightly sued by the state of California for sexual harassment and discrimination, we join other games media in a complete blackout of all reviews or coverage of their games of any kind, as well as support their employees striking tomorrow, and Valve has released the Game Gear 2 (which they promise will run "the entire Steam library" at 30+fps)

Hanna-Barbera Cartoons

Tonight on GeekNights, we consider the cartoons of Hanna-Barbera Productions, which were a staple of our 80s childhoods despite being largely from the 60s and 70s. From The Roman Holidays to Fantastic Max, they were a recycled staple of our youth. (Some, like The Good, the Bad, and Huckleberry Hound, are best forgotten entirely). In the news, Belle might be extremely good, Mamoru Hosoda has some thoughts on Miyazaki (and also worked on Utena credited as Katsuyo Hashimoto), and the official Popeye twitter account is fantastic. Also Scott didn't know there was a live action Popeye movie staring Robin Williams and Shelly Duvall.

Collecting in Games

Tonight on GeekNights, we consider collecting in games. Specifically, we consider "new in box" cartridges and people who like to tell you how many board games they own. In the news, Advance Wars 1 and 2 are coming to the Nintendo Switch, the Nintendo Switch Pro is exactly what we expected rather than what people seemed to imagine, someone buys a new-in-box copy of Super Mario 64 for way too much money, and we will be live at PAX Online East this weekend!

If you want Rym's copy of Ogre, you can have second dibs on it. If no one takes it before Rym has an excuse to see a certain person, you'll miss your chance.

We will not be presenting at PAX West 2021

As you all know, we have presented at a lot of PAXes. In fact, we've never missed a single PAX in the US since 2008. Over 13 years, 36 PAXes, and 58 panels, PAX is a huge part of our lives. We even flew to Australia twice for the first two PAXes down under. Giving a panel at PAX is something we look forward to every year, and every PAX.

We will, regrettably, not be attending or presenting at PAX West 2021.

We are not yet in a post-COVID world. The Delta variant is spreading fast. Not enough people are vaccinated. Frankly, it's too soon for a PAX.

Our official appearance policy is very simple, and we encourage you to consider it for your own personal safety. We will not attend or perform at any convention where masks or social distancing measures are required.

This is not because these measures are not effective. They are extremely important. It is because, as long as such measures are prudent and necessary, it does not seem safe or wise to attend any large indoor gathering. Especially conventions.

Stay safe, stay healthy, be careful, and we hope to see you again at a future PAX! But please, do not risk your health or safety for any convention no matter how much you miss them. It's just too soon, and the near future is too uncertain.

Posted: Tuesday July 27, 2021

Atari Game Design
PAX East Online 2021

Game design is a wide subject. The best approach to mastering it is to focus on the fundamentals, and what better place to do that than with Atari 2600 games? Join us for a deep game design analysis of classic competitive Atari games like Outlaw, and how their core concepts extend to modern games. When you can literally count the pixels with your eyes, and the code will fit in your calculator, the core principles of good (and bad) design become starkly apparent.

Book Club - The Tale of Genji

What better selection for the book club than the first novel of all time? And of course, we have to read the best possible unabridged translation. No baby mode here at GeekNights

The plot revolves around Genji, who is the son of the Emperor and a low ranking concubine. Genji is removed from the line of succession, and proceeds to go on an epic journey. The journey involves tons of romance and court drama. Spicy!

Despite being older than any other novel, The Tale of Genji has a tremendous amount of relevance to the geeks of the 21st century. The influence of Japan on nerds around the world is undeniable, and a surprising amount of things we see in pop culture are present here in a book from the 11th century. I'm quite confident after reading it how we will notice how many newer stories have been making references to this tale without us realizing it.

Also, I feel the need to point out that this first novel ever written was written by a woman. For all these reasons and so many more, this is more than worthy of book club selection.

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