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Jumping the Shark Podcast #81

No High Scores

This week Jumping the Shark is short one Brandon (who’s off searching for the Lost Ark of the Covenant), but we pick up a Tom Chick, who braves the heat to chat with us about game remakes: When are they a good thing? When do they waste of everyone’s time? What would we like to see remade in the future? First, however, we talk up the cavalcade of games we’ve been playing over the past week. First up, a good long bit on Bastion, which all of us (sans Bill) have made a point to check out. Tom marvels at just how bad Call of Juarez: The Cartel and Dynasty Warriors: Gundam 3 are, Danielle goes rogue(like) talking about Dungeons of Dredmor, and Bill talks a smattering of NCAA ’12, Panzer Corps, and just a little bit of his Sengoku preview build. Oh yeah, and I give Mass Effect 2 some props for the one part of the game they absolutely nailed. Tom doesn’t buy it, but then, what does he know? Join us for another week of laughter, tears, and just a hint of brash exuberance.

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(The embedded feed and some editing notes included after the break.)

I returned to the editing chair this week and made the time to do a legit multi-track edit, so you should hear a cleaner, clearer show than last week when we had some audio foibles. That said, if you hear what sounds like some crunching bags of ice in the background… well, one of us lacks air conditioning and you gotta do what you gotta do in this heat. I did my best to clean it out, but you’ll hear it from time to time. Speaking of returning to the editing chair, this will be my last edit for a couple of weeks as I’m heading out on vacation as of Friday (I’ll still be on next week’s show). Not sure if Brandon’s covering the next two weeks or if Dani’s pitching in, but I leave you in their capable hands. Just remember they work from the Skype conference feed, so the audio may be a bit rougher for a couple weeks. Hopefully Skype cooperates and there’s none of last week’s troubles.

READ ALSO:  Five Great Things about The Witcher 2, Act III


Todd Brakke

Todd was born in Ann Arbor with a Michigan helmet in one hand and a mouse in the other. (Never you mind the logistics of this.) He grew, vertically anyway, and proceeded to spend over 16 years as a development editor for Pearson Education, publishing books, videos, and digital learning products under the Que and Sams Publishing imprints. Because that wasn't enough of a challenge, Todd has also been a 20-year part-time snob about video games, writing reviews, features, and more for multiple outlets. Follow him on Twitter @ubrakto or check it out his website at

6 thoughts to “Jumping the Shark Podcast #81”

  1. I completely agree on what you guys said about the Mass Effect 2 DLCs. I just finished my second playthrough this weekend, and while I enjoyed Kasumi and (to a point) Shadow Broker (the sequence on the outside of the Shadow Broker ship was a bit annoying), I found Overlord rather frustrating (Jump over a lava stream? Seriously?), and Arrival was clearly stretched for gaming time (how many times did I fight my way up and down that research base?). Also they didn’t add much to the overall story.

    Clearly I will be a bit more wary when looking at the inevitable DLCs for ME3…

    (Have to say though: compared to DA2, I like the way romances are done in ME2. Not that I got one right, I tried with Miranda, but nothing ever transpired from it. Flirted with Kelly as far as I could and she had dinner with me and promised to look after my fishtank… But seriously, that’s the cool part. You have to figure them out for yourself, not like in DA2 where you basically just follow the breadcrumb trail…)

  2. How is it you folks do a whole thing on game remakes and no one asks Tom to expound upon his favorite game of 2004–Sid Meier’s Pirates? I would have been interested to hear takes on whether some of the added game mechanics (ok, minigames) and tighter focus on plot improved on the original or not in the opinion of the panel, and at least a discussion on whether this particular remake was a precedent-setter and why we don’t see more remakes like it. Still…love the podcast as always!

  3. I can’t speak for everyone else, but I try to ask Tom’s opinion as little as humanly possible.

  4. So, Todd, does it bug you that the Halo remake is going to be a boxed, retail product for $40? You mentioned $10 in the show, so I’m curious if you think that the $40 version is an acceptable thing to do?

  5. $10 was probably low-balling it, but at face value I do think $40 sounds excessive. Depends on just how much work they put into it. If it’s Halo 1 redone in their best current version of the engine… I dunno, maybe? I’m the wrong audience for it. I mean if you took Ultima IV and re-did it in the DA: Origins engine, or the Witcher 2 engine or something comparable, I’d pay oodles of dollars for it.

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