Thumbstick Athletes

If you ever wanted to be an intrepid space explorer from a backwoods alien civilization, Outer Wilds has you covered.  From the wooden launchpad to fellow astronauts strumming tunes on a banjo by a campfire on a distant planet....it oozes atmosphere.  It also finds a way to kill or maim you in a horrible fashion.  It's a must play!

 

Later in the episode, Dan and Val discuss the EA and Epic's defense of loot boxes and microtransactions, and they both played Cadence of Hyrule and Harry Potter: Wizards Unite!

Direct download: 413.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:55pm EDT

While this year's E3 wasn't particular mind blowing, there were still some amazing moments to be had.  Keanu Reeves in Cyberpunk 2077 during Microsoft's press conference, the excitement of Ikumi Nakamura while she was announcing Ghostwire Tokyo, and of course the sequel to Breath of the Wild being announced.  Each show had at least something to be interested in!

Direct download: 412.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:40pm EDT

Fell Seal: Arbiter's Mark does something that no game has done in quite awhile....scratch that hard-to-reach Final Fantasy Tactics itch.  Several have tried and failed, or just never came out.  (Unsung Story)  Fell Seal even improves upon the old formula with some modern quality-of-life improvements and runs really well even on old systems.  Can't wait for the Switch version!

 

We also cover today's Pokemon Direct, which revealed some more info on the Galar region, some new Pokemon, and the Dynamax system.  Some E3 news was touched on, and Dan gives brief first impressions of Outer Wilds.  

Direct download: 411.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:29pm EDT

With no Sony or EA press conferences this year at E3, Microsoft really has the opportunity to go big.  Will we see Fable 4 announced, or the new console they've been working on?  Will Nintendo give us something other than Mario Maker 2 and Pokemon Sword and Shield?

During Nibblebits, Death Stranding gets a new trailer and release date, the WHO officially labels "Gaming Disorder" as a recognized illness, and what the heck is Pokemon Go Plus +?

We also give brief first impressions of Fell Seal: Arbiter's Mark...which we will cover more in-depth next week.

Direct download: 410.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:42pm EDT

The cultural juggernaut Game of Thrones wrapped up last Sunday night, so we figured it was a good time to cover the episode as a main segment instead of having it after the episode.  Turns out that was a good plan since the main segment alone ended up being over 90 minutes!  We could have easily gone on longer, but will probably figure out some way to incorporate Game of Thrones in the future.

 

Those who don't want spoilers can skip ahead to 1:33:00 for the beginning of our Nibblebits segment.

 

Will joins later on to discuss his illness and all the Horizon: Zero Dawn he's been playing.

Direct download: 409.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:18am EDT

Dan and Corey talk about RPG/CCG hybrid SteamWorld Quest, the next game in the SteamWorld universe from Image & Form Games.  It's an interesting blend of genres and gets quite a few things right. 

Later in the episode we cover Nintendo's most recent Nintendo Direct that focused on the upcoming Mario Maker 2.  In "What We Played" Corey gives some brief thoughts on Fell Seal, a Final Fantasy Tactics like strategy game that we're going to cover more in depth during an episode.

After the episode Dan, Val and Corey discuss the most recent episode of Game of Thrones...Season 8, Episode 5: The Bells.

Direct download: 408.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:04am EDT

We've mentioned characters before that we'd like to see in Smash Ultimate, but decided to have an official episode to compile and immortalize characters we'd like to see make the DLC cut.  Obviously Cuphead and the character from Hollow Knight make the list since they're on the artwork for the episode, but there are others..some we've talked about before and others that go way off the board.

 

During "What We Played" Dan gives his first impresssions of Steamworld Quest, and Will played more Hollow Knight.

 

After the outro Dan, Val and Corey cover this week's Game of Thrones episode, The Last of the Starks!

 

 

Direct download: 407.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:06pm EDT

It should go without saying, but this hangover episode contains spoilers for Season 8 Episode 3 of Game of Thrones....called The Long Night. 

Since Corey was asleep for our first episode of the GoT recap for this week, we recorded a second where he could get his thoughts in.  First Hangover in a long time!

Direct download: ep_406_Hangover.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:31pm EDT

Dan's household got the new Nintendo Labo VR for his oldest child's birthday, so naturally he used to it play Breath of the Wild first.  Guess what?  It's not as bad as games media is making out to be!  Though mostly used for BotW, we did use some of the other stuff that came with it, which is quite good.  During nibblebits we discuss Epic's acquisition of Psyonix and Rocket League and the Razer Toaster.

 

As usual during Game of Thrones season, we recap and give our reactions to the most recent episode after the outro....Season 8, Episode 3: The Long Night.

Direct download: 406.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:21am EDT

We once again decided to go a different direction to our "listicles" that used to do a lot of...so like our Favorite Game Characters series, we started a Favorite Boss Battles series.  There's some obvious choices in there, like Kefka from Final Fantasy 6, but also some that may surprise.  During "What We Played" Will gives his final thoughts on Mass Effect Andromeda.

Direct download: 405.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:16am EDT

Though this generation of consoles doesn't necessarily have the heavy hitters like last gen, there's still plenty of quality new IP's that came out this gen.  Some even already have sequels of their own, like Destiny, Titanfall, and The Division.  We also decided not to cover indie titles...which if you've listened for awhile, you know there are plenty.

 

After the outro this week, our Game of Thrones recap resume now that Season 8 has FINALLY started airing.  This week we cover Episode 1: Winterfell starting at 1:42:28 of the episode if you want to skip ahead!

Direct download: Episode_404.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:30am EDT

The final season of Game of Thrones is upon us, so Dan uses the opportunity to discuss some of the games (and mods for other games) that involve our favorite fantasy universe.  From Telltale's Game of Thrones to the excellent Crusader Kings 2 mod, we cover everything worth talking about.  Also in this episode we discuss trouble at BioWare, Assassins Creed Origins, and some more Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.

Direct download: 403.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:09pm EDT

Since Val played Super Mario Sunshine last Sunday for this week's Rookie Camp video, we decided it was a good time to retroactively review it.  How well does it hold up?  How did it review when it actually came out 16 years ago?  How does one access Super Mario Sunshine today?  All answered this week, along with some discussion of Borderlands 3, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, and Assassin's Creed Origins.

Direct download: 402.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:28pm EDT

This week we cover the latest From Software game Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, which shares some DNA from the Soulsbourne games but is quite a bit different.  Even Will, who is not a fan of From Software's games, likes this entry, which adds more stealth and action elements. 

Also discussed this episode was the Wall Street Journal's report on the two new Nintendo Switch models, the ending of Far Cry 5, and also some of our early plans to do more Thumbstick Athletes content.

Direct download: 401.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:55pm EDT

Dan and Corey continue with Part 2 of our 400th episode extravaganza....covering the rest of the segments we didn't have the time, energy, or coherence to finish.  We finally got to cover Google's Stadia announcement and the Nindies Spring 2019 Showcase....Corey played a butt load of games, and we talked ever so briefly about Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.

Direct download: 400_part_2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:04pm EDT

It's time to revisit our top 10 favorite games lists in this throwback style Thumbsitck Athletes Podcast episode.  While revisiting our lists, we do some drinking, go off on tangents, argue, and cry...just like the old days!  Because this episode lasted so long, we plan on having a Part 2 to Episode 400 where we get to the rest of the segments.  Sorry to those who sent in feedback, we'll get to it ASAP!

Direct download: 400.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:34am EDT

Eric and Will take the lead for the main segment this week, talking about over-the-top action game Devil May Cry 5.  It got fabulous reviews from games media, find out if the members of the TSA podcast liked it as much!  Also the Master Chief Collection is coming to PC and adding Halo Reach....sweet!  And during "What We Played" Dan finally started Starlink: Battle for Atlas.

Direct download: 399.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:26pm EDT

Looking back on the library of the Gamecube, there were some absolute gems available for the system.  Not to say anything of Super Smash Bros. Melee which is still played competitively....and the controller still being perfect for Smash to this day.  During "What We Played" Will played a some more Far Cry, including but not limited to New Dawn and Dan tried a little Crackdown 3.

Direct download: 398.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:15pm EDT

Dan, Eric and Will give their first impressions for Anthem,the newest looter shooter from Legendary developer BioWare.  It's definitely a gamble for them, to inject classic BioWare storytelling into a genre that's generally suffered from poor stories.  During Nibblebits, the Pokemon Sword and Shield reveal is discussed.  Eric talks about Apex Legends during "What We Played" and Will played some FarCry New Dawn.

Direct download: 397.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:04pm EDT

Dan and Corey cover the Disney/Square Enix RPG that has been many years in the making.  Did all that time in development serve the game well?  During "What We Played" Corey played Civ 6's newest expansion Gathering Storm and Dan spent quite a bit of time playing Valkyria Chronicles 4.

Direct download: 396.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:13pm EDT

Dan, Will and Corey discuss the newest Chucklefish release Wargroove....the spiritual successor to Advance Wars now on PC and Switch.  Also covered this week was Nintendo's Jam packed Direct from February 13, 2019...complete with some details on Mario Maker 2, Fire Emblem: Three Houses and the remaster for Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening.

Direct download: 395.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:45pm EDT

Again in lieu of an Anthem beta episode, we decide to do something different at the last moment.  This time we reach way back, revisiting some of the Thumbies awards from the previous years.  Thanks again to Corey for creating the Thumbies master list!  During "What We Played" Dan and Will give some early Wargroove impressions.

Direct download: 394.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:31pm EDT

It was a snowy mess last week here in Upstate NY, this week it's miserably frigid and windy...so we figured it was a good time to cover our favorite snow/winter experiences in games.  Made better by the fact that they can be experienced from the warmth and comfort of our couches.  Lots to cover this week in Nibblebits, with Metriod Prime 4 being scrapped and restarted and Metro Exodus exiting Steam.  What We Played has some more AC Odyssey talk, first impressions of Kingdom Hearts 3 and the Anthem Beta.

Direct download: 393.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:41pm EDT

Dan and Will welcome Val on this week to discuss the latest Wii U game ported to the Nintendo Switch in New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe.  Another solid Nintendo game that should be experienced by the much larger group of Switch owners and not just the few, but proud Wii U owners. 

Direct download: 392_audio.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:43pm EDT

Dan and Will cover all the games (AAA mostly) coming out this year with real actual release dates.  Sure, plenty more will be coming out and some that we cover here may even see last minute delays.  But before we get into our main topic, Val comes on to get us caught up on her experiences with Rookie Camp games from November and December.  Also EA is still very poorly handling the Star Wars franchise and we gush some more about Assassin's Creed Odyssey.

Direct download: 391_episode.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:23pm EDT

This week we kick off our 2019 gaming coverage with a predictions episode....what new hardware will we see?  Unannounced games?  Then Dan talks about all he's played since we've had a regular episode, which includes Pokemon Let's GO Pikachu, Spyro Reignited Trilogy and Red Dead Redemption 2.  There's also some fairly big news stories that we cover, like Bungie and Activision splitting up and The Division 2 skipping a Steam release for the Epic Games Store.

Direct download: 390.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:47pm EDT

Dan, Eric, Corey and Will change the format a bit for this year's Thumbies and discuss live which games they want for the winner of each category. 

Direct download: 389.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:57pm EDT

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