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Episode 241: A Taste of Billy

by Billy Berghammer, James Jones, Greg Leahy, Jon Lindemann, and Jonathan Metts - May 1, 2011, 1:46 pm PDT
Total comments: 28

Our site's founder stopped by to chat about 3DS and the new console, but apparently Prince > podcasting.

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A few weeks ago, Greg gave us a heads-up that he would be missing this episode of RFN to stay up and watch the NFL Draft on TV. Considering that he is by far the most consistent member of our team (as boasted last week), we could hardly begrudge him the time off. I took it as an opportunity to bring back one of our favorite guests, NWR founder and friend of the show, Billy Berghammer. He graciously agreed, and we began to make plans for a magical episode of RFN with our old pal. Then, SOMEONE (named Jeff Cannata) coughed up a ticket to see Prince, an offer that Billy was understandably unable to resist. So, you will hear BB at the very beginning, but he had to skip out early in the show.

With Billy gone, the remaining trio keeps on truckin' through New Business. Jonny decided to pop in Mega Man Legends 2 in order to prepare for the impending 3DS "prototype" and sequel. Jon has a new Chrono Train update in which you'll find out which boss brought a screeching halt to his progress (for now). James is humiliated by Ikaruga and also delivers some sweet news on the Bit.Trip front.

In the lengthy second segment, we run through a litany of listener letters covering every topic you can imagine. Nothing is sacred, especially Fatal Frame, Project Cafe, 3DS cameras, Metal Slug, Nintendo characters looking weird in HD, and the injustice of multi-task gaming. We'd love to hear from you too, so send in those emails!

Finally, we get to announce the next RetroActive poll. This edition's theme is remakes, or rather games that have been remade. Head over to this here forum thread and make your vote count!

This podcast was edited by Greg Leahy.

Music for this episode of Radio Free Nintendo is used with permission from Jason Ricci & New Blood. You can purchase their newest album, Done with the Devil, directly from the record label, Amazon (CD) (MP3), or iTunes, or call your local record store and ask for it!

Additional music for this episode of Radio Free Nintendo is copyrighted to Nintendo, and is included under fair use protection.


We should have gone with The Podcast Formerly Known as RFN

ShyGuyMay 01, 2011

I don't want to taste Billy, I'm not downloading this.

CericMay 01, 2011

Quote from: Crimm

We should have gone with The Podcast Formerly Known as RFN

I agree.  I'll listen to this tomorrow probably.

It's too bad Jon can't go back to Mt Woe, he could use the Rubble there to build up Tech Points to get Heal on Frog (and anyone else).

There is some armor that you can get - in fact, you can get 2 sets where one absorbs and one halves element damage (the Plates absorb, the Vests halve). It requires some time manipulation to get both - you have to check a chest in 600AD but don't remove the item, then get it in 1000, then go back to 600. Fire does have a Lucca-exclusive armor that also halves Fire damage.

I don't remember if the Golem Sisters use elemental attacks, but the vests/plates definitely wouldn't help against the Iron Ball attack.

I wound up doing some online research and realized that the Golem Sisters copied ANY type of attack you did and tossed it back at you.  I noticed them copying attacks, but I figured that it would actually be a bad thing to get them to copy elemental attacks (fire, ice, etc.) since they're typically the most powerful.  Instead, it's totally the opposite; you should gear yourself to defend against one type of elemental attack, and keep that element going for the whole fight. The catch is that you don't actually know this right off the bat, because they attack before you even have a chance, which usually gets Crono countering them with physical.  So unless you happen to purposely attack with fire or ice (not likely because you're trying to heal right out of the gate), you'll see them copying physical attacks but not necessarily anything else.

Once I knew this pattern, the fight was trivial.  I equipped Taban's Vest (halves fire damage) on Lucca, and simply had her cast Flare on them over and over again.  This hits them both for 1400+ damage each time, and also forces them to attack with a (much weaker) fire spell.  Because of her vest, Lucca only absorbed about 50HP damage with each attack.  Crono and Marle got knocked out right away, but I didn't even bother reviving them...Lucca was able to single-handedly take them down with ease.

Quote from: NWR_Lindy

Lucca was able to single-handedly take them down with ease.

If you know what I mean.

TurdFurgyMay 01, 2011

I remember where I was when I heard that Osama Bin Laden died.
On my couch listening to RFN, episode 341: a Taste of Billy.

Killer_Man_JaroTom Malina, Associate Editor (Europe)May 02, 2011

Despite not even being there, Greg managed to inject some of his trademark oddball humour with that stinger. Bravo, sir - you've made my day.

One thing that Nintendo unequivocally does better than its competitors is the debug process. While it could be argued that it's good that the infrastructure for patches exists on other systems, the fact of the matter is, some developers are abusing that liberty by being lazy with debugging. I have a serious issue with the mentality that it's okay to ship a broken game because "we can simply fix it some other time." The ability of patch is not a crutch to stand on. In another thread, I mentioned being unable to play Portal 2 for two or three days because of a extremely obvious control bug. Why did that get through? I'm very much in agreement that QA testers get undue flak when it is quite likely that they find a lot of the problems, but the developer/publisher just doesn't care. Nintendo, on the other hand, is much better about this; they've got a large, dedicated team, the Super Mario Club, to deal with all that stuff. It's not 100% perfect, but still very good overall.

Also, referring to the Bit.Trip Saga discussion, if it's true that the cost will be $40, then the compilation is the better deal by a hair. On WiiWare, the first three are 600 points and the latter three are 800, so if they were all purchased separately, you'd be paying $42. The 3DS version sounds like the way to go just for convenience and the benefits of it being portable. Plus, that price is likely to drop after a couple of months.

Quote from: Killer_Man_Jaro

Plus, that price is likely to drop after a couple of months.

Like Jon's pants after a couple of drinks.

Or just Jon in general if he's on a bed.

Talkback is slow this week... everyone busy with the OBL news?

CericMay 02, 2011

Quote from: Jonnyboy117

Talkback is slow this week... everyone busy with the OBL news?

Nope Just finishing.

Hey, Billy.

If you been through a few of these it was fairly obvious.

It's the logical progression.

By god yes.

I needed to go and process things in Portal 2 to solve some of the puzzles so far.

Though they take sooo looong to make those.

I'll bet you it will.

I can see that but, I also think they wouldn't exist without that HL2 pickup physics gun.

Portal backtracking would be Sadistic.

You do actually walk kids in a way.

I still want Majora to be a hidden in OoT:3D

True, I think that Streetpass would be a better advertising point.  Also MORE demo units. With multiple demo selection.

Go Preds!

Yep. Thats the end then.

Go GameFly!

The Programmers a lot of the time are in the same boat.  "But I just need to fix this."

I need to play those MM: Legends games

Are you playing the Disc? Nvm you just answered that.

That could be the Ultimate weapon.  She's McGuyver.  Now I feel let down by Maxi's performance in my Mafie game.


Mega Mickey.

Yeah, It surprise me he was just a Human.

Radioactive energy crystals are currency lol.  Isn't this the series that give us lego.. Servbots?

They're Tombraiders.  Now where the Boobs.

That reminds me of PSO.

Its Mega Man.  Anything not in the original series is Post Apocalyptic.

I like having little things.  Thats even by now standards... Have you played the recent FF's?

I'm looking forward to this.

Mega-Train updates.

That sounds better having a world change.


You just want to torture your soul?

lol, You are glutton for punishment.

Actually thats not to bad.

That appeals to that market.

You've gone soft.

XBox Live Peer Pressure.

Tatae mode?

Here's your Jello.  Be a good Boy today.

Oh wow.  Does it have the Strider life system too? (Bullet hell platf

Really... Moon Diver now sounds interesting because I liked the original Strider.

I hear their good so, I'll pick it up on 3DS.

$40 saves you 2 dollars.

Oh thats funny about the DK game.

They had success with the Conduit.

Spiderman DS games are good?  How do they compare to Maximum Carnage back in the day.

Baby come back.

Though I think you block me <.< >.>

Its our IP but, not our game.

I've heard the Fatal Frame is good.

Think about OoT bottom screen on 3DS remake.  Personally I be fine if its their to clean up the big screen and make it more cinematic.

Its like the movie Wanted.  Looks to been really fun to make but the concepts don't work.

Not to mention Touch screens have been around forever.

Need to play Henry Hatsworth.

But something like Radar you need to see while playing.. Yeah because you need to look down.

Or used like SSFIV for Mappable custom buttons.

I would too.

I think they will make it a point not to make it be able to gain on its own in any way.  Though I think the 3DS will link up to the new Super Wii and allow for the download of little games and like or maybe wifi home game play like the PSP.

Do it like a satellite but opposite.  Weak reciever and strong transmitter.

Was it only 10 hours for the Wavebird?

Actually a better idea would be trimming down the controls of a game and have the system stream the whole game to the 3DS so you can play it in 3D.  It has all the screens needed for it and for the most part all the controls too.  That would be awesome.

Integrated Facebook computer?  So it be a Windows Phone 7 phone?

It should use Facebook.  You are not going to make a viable competator to Facebook.

You should read the Q&A with Iwata that BnM posted.  He address social gaming and what the studies Nintendo has commissioned for threat assesment and like says.  They are interesting.  http://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/en/library/events/110426qa/index.html

Expand that idea and go with RSS feeds, News tickers, etc.

In that same Q&A mentioned earlier Iwata goes into that as well.  They specifically would really like for you to be able to press a button and your whole setup, TV, Reciever, Input Selection, Wii, and Game Launch, would happe with just that one press.

Or Palm territory.  That sounds like what Touchstone does, their inductive charger.

Only if I can have the screen go to the Awesome Cube clock on the GCN.

Was the Wireless on?

I got the Extended battery from Nyko.

Yeah I've seen that angry red before.

The 3D portion would be nice if it was better.

Yeah the plush one was very good.

A higher resolution camera would need a high resolution screen to show them correctly.

As they go into his Tummy.

Read Crimm Read.

That will be hilarious if he edit himself in at the end.

Thats right.  We don't have our Brit for the wedding recap.

Remember the Brawl image where Mario's clothes you can see the threads.

That would take forever if it was like Prime.

WW is a beautiful game with a good art style that can stand the test of time.

Its on the Forum.

Think about N64 Mario to Sunshine Mario.

Kirby could have more Marshmellowy Physics.

PUlling full circle to the Newscast.  Think about Pikmin.

Thats true.  Its the epicness of distance on that game style.  God of War another example.

TP still isn't as pretty as WW.  Only good thing was Ball and Chain comparative.

Stick figure Link :D

Are better with something else?  I mean that is a fault of the battle system as well.

Like lvl grinding.

I've weighted down the A button before.

I couldn't do WoW and another game at the same time while actually doing something.

I'm not writing out a stream of thoughts really.

Deleted for everyones benefit.

You shouldn't be.

Skip the RPGs play Portal 2.

I just don't have the time for a great Pokemon.  Its a marriage issue now just getting the time to run a Mafia game.

I did GameFly because I never return to a game most point.

He plays them through osmoses.  Disc to the head and he did all of it.

Now it will haunt you after this podcast.

Yes, Jon.

Their is a list that has all of NWR that the NWR twitter user has.

What?  I need a link to this Package of Cheese that gets you BG&E.  No Pics, Didn't Happen.

Is it the New Jonny L like, the New Coke.

Crimm is dieing.

What in the World with the Yoshi.  Oh My Gosh that hurts.  Thats hilarious.

All choas without Greg.

The end was probably the funniest part.

DonkeyBilly KongMay 02, 2011

Hey, this is the guy that sent in the lame thought about the controller streaming and battery life.  It was awesome that you took the time to destroy me!  It was based on the observation that, almost universally, streaming video does terrible things to battery life on portable devices.  Watching a movie over wifi, for example, can be tenuous.  Instead, playing a non-intensive game locally, such as Angry Birds, can allow for many hours more before the dreaded red light.

Consider an 800x600 image moving across a 600x480 screen.  If you have the original image, it requires almost no processing to render this movement (just show a different range), whereas with streaming, you need a full refresh of the image for each frame.

Also, you quickly throw out that bluetooth streaming would be easy, but it seems that this would lead to really terrible video quality at a decent resolution (low bandwidth), apart from the battery issues.  Quality will increase as you increase compression, but then you are stuck again needing substantial processing to decompress the video, killing battery life.  Do we really want the video equivalent of the tinny speaker on the Wii controller?

These are just some observations and I am not an expert.  Which is more efficient depends on the situation, and perhaps both (heavy decompression and app-type downloads) will be available, or a high bandwidth connection to use in bursts.

Hey KeyBilly, sorry if it sounded like we destroyed your idea. You may actually be on the right track if streaming video would cause battery issues -- that points to more intermittent, smaller packets of data such as static images or limited animation. In that case, your comparison to the Wii Remote speaker is apt, except that the poor sound quality has as much to do with cheap hardware as limited data transfer. Games like No More Heroes prove that you can do sustained audio transfer to the Wii Remote -- the bandwidth limitations may require heavy compression, but it doesn't seem that Nintendo placed any restrictions on the amount of speaker usage out of a concern for battery life.

NinSageMay 02, 2011

Hey guys, another great episode!


1. Are we determined to make toilet jokes about the new console name?  I mean, perhaps I run in different circles, but I've never heard of "stream" as like an obvious, snicker-inducing reference to urinating or whatever you all were saying.

The Wii? Sure. That was asking for it big time.  But I've heard people quote Ghostbusters about crossing the streams a billion times and no one's ever looked at each other and thought "pee pee joke!" afterward.

2. Day 1 DLC = bad. Ondisc DLC = sinful.  My perspective is that though all consoles should be capable of DLC, but ONLY for the justifiable reason of UNPLANNED bug-fixing.

3. I loved MegaMan Legends 1 and 2 and can't wait for 3!

4a. Just as you guys said, the new console's controller screen will be exactly what the developers make of it.  Sadly, that doesn't mean a whole lot since very few developers tried to do anything meaningful with the Wiimote's speaker.  The best uses I can think of are phone calls in No More Heroes and ... and I think there was one other game.  So, that's like 2.5 ... yippee.

4b. You guys have amaaaazing ideas for the new console's controller usage.  Normally I'm a very optimistic gamer compared to most, but I gotta say, I don't see your cool ideas happening... though I have ultimate faith in Nintendo's ability to come up with awesome new innovations, I have yet to see them fully realize the full potential of those devices.  And your ideas are pretty full-potentially.  But, who knows, right? =)

5. The only "problem" with HD is certain games get caught up in graphic-whoring for its own sake. I can't tell you how many HD games seemed to waste their potential by spending all their time on shaders (or whatever the crap is the dick-wagging thing) but failed to make the game itself anything but another bloody shooter.  White noise in HD is still white noise.

Now, I'm not afraid of Nintendo making these mistakes with its 1st party titles.  But, I would be sad if my quirky third party games suddenly make EVERY texture shiny, etc, etc.  Also, I really HOPE that HD is mutually exclusive from the concept that all action characters must be shot up with steroids, or have bouncing boobies hanging out.  Lastly, games that currently try to do "realistic" facial animations almost always come off as some kind of possessed, demonic, mannequins.  I'm sorry, I know right now people compare it to previous generations and feel it is impressive, but I'm confident someday people will look at current gen facial expressions and not only identify them as being less realistic, but just laughably executed.  To be specific, it's all in the jaws... the same problem exists in the virtual rendition of Jeff Bridges in Tron Legacy.  The lower jaws just flops open and closed like an old chain-like swingset.

Someday, we'll get there with realistic facial renditions.  But we aren't there now, and people act like HD brought us there....  just like they short-sightedly thought about the first Virtua Fighter, etc.

6. There was a time that when I felt the more hours a game took to complete the better.  That's when I had a lot more time for games, knew less about what games were out there (ignorance IS bliss!), and couldn't afford more of them anyway.

I really hate when I sometimes feel internal (or external) pressure to "get through" a game in order to move on to a next one.  Because then my beloved hobby starts feeling like work, like a chore - and that ain't cool.

This is partially why developers should stop trying to CHURN out so many games year after year.  They try to sell us on the contradictory idea that we should be paying extra for DLC, iterative sequels, etc, but also should be willing to pay full price for the same big shooter in 12 months.  Say what you will about Pokemon, they just released their 5th generations in 15 years.  I'm cool with that. 

It's also worth noting that my gaming personality seems very similar to James'.  I'm choosy with what I play, I almost NEVER wind up playing a game I don't like, and then I do "devour" it.  I also have a system which optimizes my gaming focus and thus enjoyment: I only play one game at a time in a given relationship.  I have a game I play myself, a game I play with my wife, a game I play with my friend Jay, and a game I play with my friend Joe.  It's a sweet system.

7a. Lindy makes me laugh more and more lately. You are one funny dude.
7b. I'm proud of the Lindy's new philosophy on playing through his backlog.  It's like when you see someone overcome alcoholism - it gives hope to us all!

8. I played/own MegaMan Command Mission.  The art style was really awesome, and the new characters were really interesting.  But the game?.... was not good.  MMX8 was great though!! Seriously! X7 was the low point of the series but X8 was greeeeeaaaat!!!

Bamboo Pandemonium is the low point of gaming.

Axel makes me want to shoot someone. Namely Axel.

I think Stream is a stupid name. However, if I see the consoles listed like this I'm going to laugh: NES, SNES, N64, GameCube, Wii, Stream.

I've always wanted to play X8, although that video clip reminded me how janky it looks.

CericMay 02, 2011

"Weapon Get!"
"Shine Get!"

So Similar... Mario must be a Reploid...

NinSageMay 02, 2011

Quote from: Crimm

Bamboo Pandemonium is the low point of gaming.

I know it's ridiculous.  But so was Guts Man ..... he just throws big squares and his name is "Guts Man."  GUTS!? Man. wth?!
And that was in the FIRST FLAPPIN' GAME in the franchise.

If that were made now-a-days the internet would have been filled with jokes about a robot who either disembowels enemies or lassos them with his intestine =P

People too often dub old ridiculousness charming and new ridiculousness lame.

I was guilty of this the first time I realized people ten years younger than me thought fondly of Power Rangers.

Quote from: Crimm

Axel makes me want to shoot someone. Namely Axel.

You are entitled to your opinion.  I liked 'im.

Quote from: Crimm

I think Stream is a stupid name. However, if I see the consoles listed like this I'm going to laugh: NES, SNES, N64, GameCube, Wii, Stream.

I don't understand.  Please explain?

Plus, Project Natal was a stupid name but I don't remember people freaking out and making fetus jokes.  Then the REAL name was revealed .... "Kinect."  The slogan to accompany that name should have been "eh? eh? get it?? eh??"

Quote from: Jonnyboy117

I've always wanted to play X8, although that video clip reminded me how janky it looks.

It corrected a lot of the mistakes made by X7.  If you can manage to borrow it from someone it's definitely worth a 45-minute trial to see where your experience falls on the NinSage <-> JamesJones spectrum =)

Killer_Man_JaroTom Malina, Associate Editor (Europe)May 02, 2011

I forgot to mention this before -- Jonny, how on earth have you managed to play Picross 3D for 150 hours?! I've completed well over 300 puzzles on my copy and I doubt that took any more than 24 hours. I think you might have overestimated that time. Or maybe I have grossly underestimated my time, but the puzzles are all 5 to 10 minutes, so I don't think anybody could play for that long, unless you replay puzzles for the 3-star ratings.

DonkeyBilly KongMay 03, 2011

Quote from: Jonnyboy117

Hey KeyBilly... brains...

I meant "destroyed" in a good way.  You read my email and gave your opinions on it.  I couldn't ask for more, and it's cool that you guys interact with us on the forum too.  I only regret that I didn't contribute something more intelligent.

I do agree about the speaker, and was only using it as an example of a nice feature that was limited by low quality.  I have high hopes that Nintendo will avoid that with the Cafe controller without creating the battery life typical for streaming video devices, since that would be awful for a controller.

I am just guessing on my Picross 3D playtime, but speaking as a guy with experience playing several games for over 100 hours, I think it has been at least that much and probably a lot more. I have completed every non-DLC puzzle in the game except for a couple of bonus puzzles on Hard, Level 10 that require insanely efficient play to finish in time. In order to unlock the bonus puzzles, you do have to go back and get three stars on most puzzles, and the minimum increases in the later stages. I also went back to get perfect scores on all of the Easy and Medium puzzles, plus most of the Hard.

Also, if you think all the puzzles take 5 or 10 minutes to complete... keep going. ;-)

Lauren has likely played Picross 3D for 200 hours by this point. I'm not kidding when I say that she has pretty much played only that for an entire year!
I probably sunk 30 hours into it to complete all the puzzles, and then another 10+ when we downloaded all the DLC stuff. I played it for a little bit a few months ago, and even though I've completed all the puzzles, that random feature makes it feel like a whole new game. Bastards...

We need more games like Picross 3D. Or I quit.

KDR_11kMay 03, 2011

I don't find Ikaruga fun, especially the fourth level. R-Type is better.

NinSageMay 04, 2011

R-Type is the king of shmups in my book.

I have beaten them all!

I wish they would come out with a new one.  I know they put "final" in the title of that other one but, I believe they immediately followed that up with a crappy strategy R-Type thing on PSP.

So they just have to switch crappy to awesome, strategy to shmup and PSP to anything else and we're in business!!

Quote from: KDR_11k

I don't find Ikaruga fun, especially the fourth level. R-Type is better.

They're different games. I struggle to say one is better than the other.

ShyGuyMay 05, 2011

I gave in and downloaded, and Billy tastes like chicken. I struggle to say one is better than the other.

NinSageMay 05, 2011

A Billy who tastes like chicken?!?!

Identity revealed!!

dun dun dunnnnnnnnnnn

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