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TDPodcast.com – 078 You Got Art in My Video Game!

Show Summary:
Follow us Around the Pool Table as we continue to tackle the flood of games. Our main topic addresses the challenge video games face as attempts are made to address controversial issues such as terrorism.

Around the Pool Table:
Bryan:
– Changed banks
– Bravely fought the flu

Matt:
– Playing Borderlands (PS3)
– Playing Ratchet and Clank Future: A Crack in Time
– Playing Trine (PSN)
– Watched Drag me to Hell
– Saw San Jose Sharks vs Colorado Avalanche

Jonathan:
– Played Borderlands
– Played Tekken 6
– Finished Trine (PSN)
– Finished Ratchet and Clank Future: A Crack in Time
– Failed to resist the temptation to buy Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars (PSP)
– Upgraded to Windows 7

Wayne:
– Finished Wolfenstein – Played some MP
– Mucho MAG – learned to be a medic
– Watched Stargate Universe
– Castle- Nathan Fillion omage to Firefly

TD Newscast (all sources are links):
– Facebook the next iPhone? (a platform that is skewed to the “casual” players but supports a variety of experiences) (via Joystiq).
– Netflix comes to PS3, Microsoft not planning to drop Gold requirement (via IGN)

Mr Matt’s Album of the Week:
– Wolfmother – Wolfmother

Main Topic: Can Videogames Tackle Serious Issues:
With the upcoming release of Modern Warfare 2, and the bit of controversy from its portrayal of “acts of terrorism”, it makes sense to try to address this question:

As long as video games continue to rely on constant and mass killing of enemies, can they really be sued to “honor” soldiers or to provide social commentary on modern day (or historical) atrocities?

– How can the consequences of war be communicated when a players character magically regenerates their health after be shot repeatedly?

– Can we really use the “it’s just a game!” excuse to justify the mass action, then use the “hey, its art!” excuse to justify scenes of horrific violence?

– If Saving Private Ryan had featured badass action sequences with Tom Hanks blowing away tons of guys in slow motion, wouldn’t it be categorized as offensive?

The Community:
Call from Jon and George McBain
iTunes reviews from JD’sBlackBox
Live Chat questions from Michipoo18