DGC Ep 092: Anachronox (part two)

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where we are in the midst of our discussion about 2001's quirky Western-built Japanese-style RPG Anachronox. We talk about the writing and humor, how those may have developed, and also discuss the characters and their characterization, among other topics. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Through Votowne

Podcast breakdown:
0:45   Segment 1: Anachronox
50:23 Break
50:52 Segment 2: Feedback

Issues covered: etymology of sly boots and other forms of boots, the writing style, broad and referential humor, the quest for a size five helmet, comedic space opera, particular interests in the humor, dark humor, lack of boundaries to the writing, Grumpos's Yammer ability, going back and forth with your party on Votowne, having to have Sly in your party, drifting in space conversations, walking a thin line of humor and menace, hinting at Detta before you meet him, is PAL's voice getting in the way?, lip-synching and fully-voiced cinematics, recording all actors in the same room, length of space cutscenes, edited together machinima, paying off on team and technical investments over multiple games, use of multiple locations, feeling like a television series, political commentary, gaining confidence in comedy, individualism in Votowne and Rho Bowman, use of space and environment in combat, combat speed, stone sentinel fight and combat design, figuring out the JRPG rock-paper-scissors stuff, combat challenge and depth (or lack thereof), enabling character dialog based on quest state, Sender Station Station, NPC state or location changes based on quest, boss battles, jeep battle section at end of MGS 1, marker system challenge in SWRC, air steering in Tomb Raider.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Nathan Bailey’s 1721 Dictionary of Canting and Thieving Slang, Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary, SpaceQuest, Sierra, The Beatles, Tom Hall, Jim Jones, SpongeBob Squarepants, Cartman, Buck Rogers, Kingdom Hearts, Nightmare Before Christmas, Cowboy Bebop, Mass Effect, Planescape: Torment, Chinatown, John Huston, Kingpin, Daredevil, The Godfather, Jeff Morris, Jake Hughes, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, 2001: A Space OdysseyUncharted (series), Star Trek: Wrath of Khan, Star Trek (television series), Avengers/Captain America, Final Fantasy IX, Chrono Trigger, Tomb Raider, Drew Homan, Final Fantasy VIIMetal Gear Solid, Panther One/Anthony Vaccaro, Asteroids, Pong, Unity, Unreal Engine 4, Hero Engine, GameMaker: Studio, Republic Commando, Nathan Martz, Tomb Raider (2013), Mario (series), TIE Fighter, Half-Life, Julian Gollop, X-COM, Chris Avellone.

Next time:
To the Surface of Democratus!

Asteroids tutorial, Step 1: https://youtu.be/7XDcSXVUGsE

GameMaker: https://www.yoyogames.com/gamemaker

Brett Making Asteroids in a couple hours: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gv7L09FOx8E

@brett_douville, @timlongojr, and @devgameclub