Episode 755: Activision Acquisition Isekai

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Nobody had to get hit by a bus… yet.

If, following my exhortations, you’re reading the article for the first time, then welcome. I took over writing the article in the 400s, so you only have about 300 episodes worth of articles to catch-up on. That’s fine, because if my words pushed you here, then you’ve already heard what the episode is about.

But, since you’re new here, let me give you the tour.

To the right of the article (or elsewhere, depending on if you’re on mobile) there’s a series of related links that connect this article to the topics we speak about. This week you’ll see links to company profiles, news, and litany games.

Above, you’ll see the links to the MP3 feed and iTunes feed, as well as links to the audio file. Here’s a fun spoiler, we don’t generate an AAC file anymore, nobody does, because Apple made it impossible unless you’re in GarageBand. We still support both RSS feeds, because we have people subscribed to both, but they link to the same file. In some views there are shadows of a Zune feed, which is a thing we used to have. I believe we removed it, and yet some people allege they still see it. There’s no reason to click; it goes to an error page.

Above that is some bold text. We call this the “abstract,” and it shows under the title when viewed on the homepage. It’s usually a follow-up joke to the episode title. It’s often not about the contents of the episode. That said, to my knowledge, no one mentioned this week was hit by a bus. Metaphorically, you could probably argue…

The remaining space is this text, and for those of you who have not already heard it, I will now impart a rundown of the episode. I sometimes include commentary, depending on my mood and the completeness of my notes from the recording session. I also sometimes engage in what Jon calls “audience of one” behavior, which is to say jokes to amuse myself. I’m sure he will assert this needless field trip to the article meets this standard, except he wont read it. So I’m safe.

We’ve spent the entirety of 2022 demanding email questions be sent, in decreasingly fraught terms. At the start of the year we demanded dropping toddlers on their head, now we’re suggesting you set them on the floor. Our thinking continues to evolve. This week, Microsoft’s decision to spend nearly $70b to acquire Activision Blizzard, Inc. spurred a couple of questions – including one that explicitly banned business experts J&J from the conversation. Your loss. We did a deep dive on the corporate strategy of mega-companies, and why the normal calculus of costs to profit might not matter when your company’s annual income outstrips the GDP of most countries on Earth. If you’re Cronus you do what you need to do to prevent the rise of Zeus. Humans be damned. This also lead us to fearful emails about Nintendo’s future, but it turns out there’s more bulwarks to Nintendo’s independence than some unnamed Japanese law that is constantly cited.

We’re still facing challenges with our email provider deciding that RFN shouldn’t have an email segment anymore. It’s probably right, but an idea being ill-conceived has never stopped us before. The good news is this fancy webform will let you send us your questions if you’re having problems with the email. Just do it on a desktop device, it seems the submit button is hidden on the mobile view… we’re working on that too.

After an eventful news/email segment, we dig into a comparably light section of New Business.

Guillaume has finally finished The Great Ace Attorney, a 70 hour adventure game where there are NO loose ends. You think you found a plot thread that got dropped? Shu Takumi is about to hit you with an hour of exposition to prove he did not. Speaking of creators who have their vision and have no plans to change anytime soon, Gui has now moved onto Goichi Suda’s No More Heroes 3. The “brash” style of the No More Heroes series resonates with Gui, but apparently its appeal is not universal.

Banjo Kazooie is finally out for the Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pass Nintendo 64 Online Games insert additional words here to emphasize how dumb this long name is. Greg is taking a look at the emulation of the Rare platformer, finally returning to Nintendo consoles decades after Microsoft bought…wait…

Speaking of Microsoft’s all-subscription vision: James is playing Scarlet Nexus via the Xbox Game Pass service. Although he didn’t know it at the time of recording, if you were playing Anime Plot Twist Bingo with this game, you’d fill in every space. One scene had 3 in a single sentence. It’s absolute nonsense. Sadly the game lacks that kind of adventurousness in its gameplay.

Jon closes out New Business with a quick look at a few different titles. Tekken 7 is just as much of a nonsense game as any other game (excepting Tag 2 Wii U edition and its Mario powerups), and he’s taken to playing a lot of bowling. That’s right, bowling as a Tekken character. I feel like Alisa and her flying head is kind of unfair. He’s also playing NHL 22, the latest NHL game from EA. He and James both played 19, and both felt it was a little convoluted to get good at. 22 seems to have smoothed out the edges and made it more approachable. Lastly, he’s looking at some Xbox Backwards Compatible games in light of the on-going sale. First is Red Dead Revolver: the first Red Dead game, and its not an expansive open-world title. He also bought TimeSplitters 2 and Future Perfect (3) on sale, which means Gui can now be toxic to children online for a discount price.

That concludes the article tour. On your way out, please see below to find out who edited the show, produced our art and music, and get information about this week’s ending music.

For more custom content, check out the @RFNPodcast Twitter, where James posts a preview clip and the promotional image that’s almost certainly choc full of in-jokes and assets stolen from WikiHow

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