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Archive for October, 2011

Top 10 Let’s Plays I Will Never Do

I get a lot of requests to do specific Let’s Plays, which I find extremely flattering. However, a lot of them I must simply turn down, for various reasons. I find this hard to do, because I find it amazingly humbling that people enjoy my content enough to actually make requests of games for me to play. That being said, here is a list of the top 10 requests I receive which, no matter how much people beg and plead, I will simply never do.


10: Space Channel 5

It surprises many people when they learn that I love the Space Channel 5 games, both the original and the sequel. I guess they don’t seem like my type of game… but they totally are! I love rhythm games, and I really dig the game’s “retro futuristic” style. Anyway, I’ve received a lot of requests for this game, but the requests have all been coming in very recently. I think it’s because I’ve been playing Space Channel 5 Part 2 a great deal lately on Xbox 360, and it’s been showing up on my Twitter feed thanks to me sharing my activity via Raptr. So, why won’t I LP it? Quite simply, it’s just not a good game to LP. How can I talk during the dance sequences? They are extremely fast-paced and require total concentration – it’s hard to talk at all, let along come up with something interesting to say, during times like this. I could theoretically do post-commentary, but what interesting things are there to say while Ulala is going “UP DOWN UP DOWN CHU CHU CHU”? It just seems like a bad idea.

9: Beavis & Butt-head (SNES)

My LP of Beavis & Butt-head for the Sega Genesis is, for some reason, one of my most popular LPs. I guess it only makes sense that people would request me to do the SNES version of the game as well. Sadly, this will never happen, for two reasons. First, and foremost, I am simply not familiar with the game. I’ve never even played it! Those who know me well know that I’ve never owned an SNES – I would occasionally rent one from Blockbuster, but Beavis & Butt-head was never one of the games I’d pick up along with the console. So it would be a blind run of a game I know nothing about, and that just doesn’t interest me right now. The second reason is a bit more… personal. See, my LP of the Genesis version is quite popular, but a great deal of the people who have found it are, well, not the type of people I want to attract to my channel. The videos get far more negative feedback than any of my other videos – this, despite the fact that I am playing a difficult game without dying even once. Lots of the comments are generic “you suck” types of things. It’s also clear that these videos have, frighteningly, been some people’s first exposure to the concept of a Let’s Play – since I’ve gotten comments telling me to shut up and just play the game. I really don’t need that kind of attention (but I do appreciate all of the good attention the videos have received!), so I won’t be doing any more Beavis & Butt-head games.

8: Little Nemo: The Dream Master

“Hey, hang on a second,” some of my older fans may be saying. “You already did this game. In fact, you did it live, and posted the live videos!” Oh I did, did I? Go ahead, look at my channel, see if you can find them. Yes, you’re right, I did do a live LP of Little Nemo, and I did post it… but I deleted it. I didn’t just set it to Private or Unlisted, I bloody deleted it. Why? Because I was terribly unhappy with the results. It was, by far, my weakest LP ever. I had to use a Game Genie code, and even then I STILL had to use save states. Still, some people have asked me to give the game another shot. I won’t. I’ve come to the realization that I just am not good at this game, and I never will be. I see no motivation to “train” and become better at it, because I simply do not enjoy it. I could do it again, just as badly, but the whole “GOSH, I SUCK AT VIDEO GAMES, LOLOL” thing has never been my style. I’ve never enjoyed LPs like that, and I’d certainly never make one. Sure, I’ve had some spectacular fails in my videos (four Boom Booms underwater, anyone?), but those were incredibly difficult romhacks – that’s a different thing altogether. Sorry Nemo, you’ll have to stay asleep as far as I’m concerned.

7: Any first-person shooter

You’ve possibly already seen “Docsigma’s First Left 4 Dead”. If not, look it up on YouTube. The very first time I played Left 4 Dead, I played it online with three friends. They were secretly recording the whole thing, and I had no idea. And, well, I’m just… bad. “But it was your first time!” Yep, it was, so my failure can be excused. Anyway, moving right along… I will never LP a first-person shooter because, with the exception of Left 4 Dead on the easiest difficulty setting, I *hate* first-person shooters. And with the exception of Left 4 Dead on the easiest difficulty setting, I *suck* at first-person shooters. Does my hatred cause my suckiness? Or is it the other way around? I really don’t care. Most gamers have at least one genre of games they don’t care for – in my case, it’s first-person shooters (with the aforementioned exception of Left 4 Kindergarten). So why LP something I despise? No thanks!

6: Treasure Island Dizzy

“Hey, hang on a second,” some of my most devoted fans may be saying. “You already did this game.” Yes! Yes, I did! That’s why I’ll never LP it – because I already did, and it is available on my channel! The reason some people may not know that I LPed it is because it’s not called “Let’s Play Treasure Island Dizzy” or anything like that – it’s called “Doc Sigma’s 2000 Subscriber Special”, and I do the LP in the guise of Moon Man, a hilariously over-the-top offensive caricature of McDonald’s Mac Tonight mascot who speaks with a deadpan computerized voice. In my opinion, that’s part of what makes Moon Man so funny – he is saying all of this ridiculously racist violent garbage in such a nonchalant, completely emotionless deadpan voice. Anyway, I’ll never do Treasure Island Dizzy because, well, I already did it.

5: Kaizo Mario World

Early in my LP career, I tended to specialize in romhacks of Super Mario 3, especially ones which were insanely difficult. I have since moved on to other things, but I still love a good Mario 3 romhack. Notice I said “good”. In my opinion, if a romhack is designed to just be as stupidly and insanely difficult as humanly possible, that’s not “good” – that’s torture. And that’s a perfect definition of Kaizo Mario World. Plus, it’s not even a Mario 3 romhack, it’s a Super Mario World romhack, and I generally don’t enjoy *good* SMW romhacks since I’m not terribly good at the original game! So that’s two excellent reasons right there. Let’s add a third one: it’s been done to death. It’s one of those games which “everybody” seems to have LPed at some point. And I refuse to LP something which has already been done dozens and dozens of times. Plus, going back to an earlier point, an LP of Kaizo by me would just be a savestate festival. Some people may want to see that, but I certainly don’t want to produce it.

4: Any traditional RPG

Look, one of the “rules” of Let’s Play is “don’t LP a traditional RPG”. While there is no requirement to abide by the LP rules, I feel that they are good rules, and that they make sense, so I choose to follow them. Traditional role-playing games are a bad idea to LP for several reasons. Sitting there clicking through dialog boxes… suffering through never-ending random battles… cutscenes… and let’s not forget the number of episodes which would be required. Good lord, some RPGs have a hundred hours of gameplay! I will say that some people have the ability to do LPs of traditional RPGs. Very few people do; almost all people don’t. And I don’t care to find out which of those categories I belong to.

3: The Second Reality Project

The Second Reality Project is one of the most well-known romhacks of all time, of any game. And that, right there, is unfortunately the main reason why I will not LP it. In fact, it is so popular that it is common for people to refer to it by its initials TSRP. Don’t get me wrong, it is an excellent SMW romhack – again, that’s another reason I won’t do it – but it’s so extremely popular that it is one of the very few romhacks which has been “done to death”, a title normally reserved for non-hacks. There are dozens of LPs of this romhack out there, and some of them are quite good. Why not watch one of them instead of asking me to do one?

2: I Wanna Be The Guy

This should go without saying. Really, it should. And you may be surprised that it’s not in the number one slot. I honestly can’t believe I still get requests for this. I honestly can’t believe that people are STILL doing new Let’s Plays of this game. Seriously, it’s just a death fest, requiring memorization of stupid gimmicky traps. I don’t get why people enjoy this game… and I am absolutely FLOORED that people enjoy making LPs of it… and I am completely and utterly DUMBFOUNDED that people enjoy *watching* LPs of it. Sheesh!

1: Mario Adventure

This one was extremely difficult to add to the list. It’s quite possibly the most frequently requested game I get. And, it is an excellent game – quite possibly the best Super Mario 3 romhack in existence, and certainly the most famous one. Unfortunately, that right there is also why I have made the decision to never do it – it’s just too famous. When people first discover it, they get all excited that they found something so awesome, and some of those people come running to me to share this awesomeness with me… and that’s humbling. However, these people are like Christopher Columbus: they’ve just discovered something which millions of people have already discovered before them. See, Mario Adventure is so damn good that it’s probably the only Mario 3 romhack to have many, many LPs on YouTube. It’s quite possibly the only Mario 3 romhack which has been “done to death”. Don’t get me wrong, it deserves the attention! It’s an excellent game! In fact, it’s so excellent that I suggest you *don’t* watch an LP of it – it will ruin your fun and spoil all of the surprises. Just go play the game yourself. Trust me, you will be glad you did.


And that, as they say, is that. I hope to post some new LP videos soon. I know it has been too long, and I apologize, but I’ve been extremely busy with work, which translates to me getting home later than usual and being more tired than usual. Now that the weekend is basically upon me, perhaps this will change soon. Until next time… cheers!

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Formspring answers 10/25/2011

An hour’s worth of Q&A with yours truly! I couldn’t be bothered to come up with an hour’s worth of video game footage this time, so just listen to this in the background while you’re doing other stuff. Come to think of it, you could always do that… hmm… maybe this will be the way I do this going forward… anyway, keep those questions coming! http://formspring.me/docsigma

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Geocaching: Halloween Geocoin Grab Bag

I got a Halloween-themed geocoin grab bag from the fine folks at GeoSwag.com and decided to open it on camera whilst waiting for my pizza to arrive.

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Quick update to Bots page

Just added a section to my Twitter Bots page describing my latest bot, @Austen_ebooks.

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Geocaching Containers (Part 4)

This is the final installment of my Geocaching Containers series. The purpose of this series has been to introduce new cachers to the different types of containers you’re likely to find in the wild, to give you a better idea of what you should be looking for and what you can expect to find. It could also give you some ideas regarding what types of containers to use if you wish to hide your own geocache. Here are the final five containers I’ll be covering: two container types I’ve found in the wild, and three which I have not but which I know a great deal about anyway.

Nano: Pet ID Holder

These tiny containers are designed to hold information about your pet. You write your name and address on the little slip of paper, stick it inside, and attach the container to your dog’s (or cat’s, etc) collar – that way if they get lost, the finder can return your pet to you, or at least get in touch with you. They also make solid nano geocache containers, but in my opinion they are not as good as the traditional “blinkie” container for two reasons: they are not nearly as waterproof (remember that the blinkie includes a built-in rubber gasket), and they are not magnetic. Therefore, instead of just sticking these to something metallic, the hider will usually stick one of these into a hole, or use the attached keychain-like attachment to lash the container onto a plant branch – but if you’re going to do that, a Bison Tube works much better. Overall, I’d say these containers are just okay. They’re easy to obtain at any pet store.

Peanut Butter Jar

Just what it says on the label! Empty peanut butter jars are commonly used as small or regular-sized geocache containers. They make fine containers for many reasons. If you eat peanut butter anyway, they’re pretty much free! They also hold up to the elements better than you may think, and the jar lid is surprisingly waterproof. They hold a nice amount of swag, and can hold a good-sized logbook (and a writing utensil). And since they are transparent, there’s little fear of the police blowing it up thinking that it is a bomb. There are concerns, however. The main one is that peanut allergies are frighteningly common nowadays. So if you’re going to use one of these, PLEASE wash it as well as you can! It is recommended to wash the container several times, and then fill it with bleach, allowing the bleach to soak for a couple of days, and then washing it again several times. In addition to eliminating the potentially deadly peanut particles, it will also remove the odor – you don’t want to attract wild animals to your cache! Also, the containers tend to crack under severe weather conditions, eliminating the aforementioned water-fastness. I should also mention that this only refers to plastic peanut butter jars – glass is, for obvious reasons, a material out of which geocache containers should never, ever be constructed.

Ammo Box

I’m sorry it took me so long to get to this one! I’ve only found one ammo box in my geocaching career, and it actually doesn’t count (it was a tiny fake plastic one… long story). But, ammo boxes are considered “THE” geocaching container by many people. They have tons of positive aspects and almost no negative ones. They come in many sizes, hold TONS of swag, are completely waterproof, are immune to the elements, are crushproof… all of these properties make perfect sense, since they were designed to hold live ammunition. The only negative things I can think of is that you definitely wouldn’t want to hide one in an urban setting – if a non-cacher happened upon one, it would almost certainly scare them enough to call the authorities. They also tend to be too large to hide in very small areas, and they are unfortunately becoming scarce – you used to be able to find them very cheaply at military surplus stores, but now that geocaching is becoming more popular, stores are both running out of them AND charging more money for them. They’re still amazing containers though – I really hope I find one someday!

Decon Containers

Military Decontamination Kit Containers, known in the geocaching community as “decons”, are essentially small ammo boxes, in terms of what they achieve. They are crushproof, completely waterproof, immune to the elements, all that good stuff. And since they are smaller than ammo boxes, they can be hidden in areas where an ammo box would be impractical (at the cost of less room for swag, of course). There’s really only one issue I’ve found with decons… most cachers don’t seem to know how to close them! The lid must be firmly pressed down onto the container, until all four corners of the lid make a nice loud satisfying “SNAP” sound. Fail to snap even one corner, and the water-fastness completely fails. I own one geocache which uses a decon as a container, and people have praised it (it even received a favorite point from the First To Find!), but one day when doing maintenance in advance of an anticipated hurricane, I found that the lid had not been securely attached, and the insides of the container were wet! Thankfully I keep the logbook inside a zipper bag inside the decon (and it’s a waterproof log as well), so things were fine, but it was still disheartening. I’ve since updated the page to tell cachers to PLEASE make sure that they close the container tightly! I am thinking of replacing this container with a different one, though… specifically, one of the ones I am about to write about.

Pelican Cases

Ohh boy. Ohh BOY. These are the BEST. Let me get the one and only negative out of the way right now: Pelican cases are expensive! That being said, these are the best geocaching containers I have ever seen in my life. Pelican cases, named after the company which makes them,  are perfectly waterproof, to the point where they can even be hidden underwater. They are also completely crushproof, perfectly impervious to all elemental conditions, have a built-in geocache information panel on the lid which cannot be removed, and possess a transparent lid. They even have a built-in automatic internal pressure regulation valve! Despite all this, Pelican cases are EXTREMELY easy to close correctly – just snap down the ONE snap on the front, and the container is closed. I can’t say enough about these – they simply rock. I own a small and large Pelican container, and frankly I cannot WAIT to put them to use!

And, that’s it. I hope you have enjoyed this series as much as I have enjoyed writing it. You can find the other three parts here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3. Cheers!

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Twitter Bots page updated

I’ve made a small update to my Twitter Bots page. I’ve added info on my latest bot, @Sodomy_ebooks, as well as edited the entry on @TheBachelorFrog to indicate that it is no longer offline (I finally got around to fixing it last night)! Sometime later today, I will probably fix @RaptorPHD as well, and then all of my main bots will be back online. Glory!

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Formspring answers 10/17/2011

Let’s listen to some question-answers while I play (roughly the first half of) Super Mario 3! Sounds like a neat way to kill an hour or so. Don’t forget to ask me questions! http://formspring.me/docsigma

 

 

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