Welcome to the I’m Just Playin’ Game Awards 2016. Hosted by Sid, Joseph and Brian in our very first summary of the year. It’s been a very interesting year for video games with some outstanding releases and some, not so much.

We believe that awards should have meaning, and without reasoning, nominations become arbitrary. Our aim has always been to add some colour to the conversation around video games. As a diverse group of people, we’ve worked to create a podcast that offers multiple viewpoints and be an entertaining and thoughtful outlet.

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Welcome back to the I’m Just Playin’ podcast and in this episode, Sid and Brian discuss everything from the e-sports entering the olympics and what games would take place to what’s up with season passes.

Following some news that perhaps the 2024 Olympics may or may not host E-Sports at the games, we discuss the notion of what games could take place. Brian opens up the idea that there’d need to be at least three categories. One shooter, one MOBA and perhaps a strategy game. Due to the terrorism connotations with games such as Counter-Strike and Rainbow Six Seige, the only real contender remaining happens to be Overwatch. With a diverse cast of characters and almost universal appeal, it’s a strong contender for being the E-Sport of choice at the 2024 games.

In the MOBA category, Brian’s suggestion is Heroes of the Storm, which Sid highly disagrees with. With games like DOTA2 and League of Legends already having superior numbers and player skill, it’s highly unlikely that Blizzard would have a second platform in the running. Finally the discussion comes to strategy games and how they’d work. Sid throws a spanner in the works and brings out Fighting Games. The Street Fighter series has a long written history and as an already spectator friendly game, this could be the strongest contender of all the games to be an e-sport at the games.

In other news, season passes never really deliver on a second season. With every game acting as a Firefly of it’s own game, Sid discusses how it’d be significantly more profitable for developers and publishers to release less games but with added content that they can charge premiums for. With the ongoing success of the Hitman 2016 reboot, and possibly one of the first AAA games to get a second season, why aren’t more publishers pushing this method? We’ve seen plenty of uproar with content being cut from games and sold as seperate DLC’s and expansions, however Sid presents the argument that charging players for more content over a longer period of time could be more fruitful. This would also allow developers longer periods of time to develop better games that would be true upgrades to a game rather than incremental yearly releases.

In this week’s episode Joseph gets a new lease of life after he triggers Sid’s short but volatile rant on games journalism and it’s irrelevance in the modern era. Following the backlash Mike Mahardy at Gamespot got for his favourable review of Gears of War 4. Fanboys of the franchise did as all fanboys do and create a shitstorm around it. Joseph, as always, delivers a monologue of why this is stupid. Whereas Sid explains that a scoring system and games journalism is just an irrelevant and dying medium that just doesn’t work anymore.

In the slippery slope, we discuss our ideal game lengths and why that is so. The circumstances of life, such as families, friendships, work and other commitments, for gamers. Especially for those that were born in the 80’s and who had grown an identity with games as their primary form of entertainment.

A large subset of the community believes that a games value is inherently tied to it’s length. With games like The Order 1886, an example of high quality production and poor length is a bad choice because of it’s lacklustre mechanics and zero replayability. Sid argues that Hitman is easily one of the best games to come out this year, regardless of the relatively bad reception that the media has been giving it. As a game it provides a complete experience with each play through but provides enough value for money, replay value and continued support with updates in it’s episodic format.

We’re also incredibly excited to be playing Mafia 3, just for it’s historic place as a AAA game where you play as a person of colour and get to shoot members of the KKK in the face. Shout out to 2K games.

Intro music: Perturbator – Meet Jimmy (Feat. Le Cassette)