The RPS Electronic Wireless Show Episode 25

At least the picture is clear.

Well crap. Every few months the Podcast Gods demand a sacrifice lest they destroy the Earth, and sadly it befell this week’s podcast. Jim and John gathered in their usual stylish fashion to create a beautiful new podcast for you, created something magnificent, and then discovered after that it sounded like it had been recorded over CB radio at the bottom of a bin. There’s no rational for this. There’s no logic. Same setup as always. So, we’re putting it up, as our voices can be clearly heard, but with our sincere apologies. (Although it’s still better quality than the first few recorded on Kieron’s dictaphone, so it’s all about perspective.) Should you be a fan of the muffle you’ll hear us discuss the role of art direction in games, favourite gaming soundtracks and ponder the potential for a unified gaming platform.

There’s also desperate emotional cries for the return of the cloth map in game boxes, along with Jim’s increasingly heartfelt complaints about maps in general. There’s thoughts on who gets to be a prince of Persia. We think about which console games we’re looking forward to this Christmas, discuss the resurgence of the adventure game, and consider Borderlands. And there’s discussion of the nature of game addiction. Oh, and a bit about game engines.

Get the mp3 directly from here, subscribe to it by RSS with this, or get it on iTunes from here.

Relevant links:

David Cameron saying “twat” on Absolute Radio. (He’s apologised like a big wimp since).

Samorost is of course created by Amanita Design, and you can buy Tomáš Dvořák’s soundtrack here.

And if anyone fancies attempting to clean up the audio beyond our pathetic means, please do have a go. Let us know if you’d prefer the wav.


  1. qrter says:

    Also good to note that that soundtrack CD includes the game, Samorost 2.

    I love that soundtrack.

  2. Alex says:

    The background hiss gives it a nice folksy feel. All you need is Jonathon Coulton on the acoustic guitar and you’re set.

  3. Larington says:

    Easier to listen to on headphones than laptop speakers it seems.
    Sounds rather like a rotary oscillator (Maybe you were sat closer to the computer than usual or you had a fan on in the room because its not raining at all, no really, its actually nice weather at the moment), I tried using the noise reducer on a open source audio editing program (Audacity fyi) but it eat into the quality of the voices as well as dealing with the background noise (I shoulda probably experimented more with it but I’m feeling lazy).

  4. Psychopomp says:

    “Everything is easier to listen to on headphones than speakers of any form.”

    This is true with all things.

  5. The Sombrero Kid says:

    incidentally vista and windows 7 let you set the volume for each application meaning you never have to listen to installers or web browsers or anything not a media player make a sound ever again.

  6. Psychopomp says:

    On the subject of art direction, I don’t suppose any of the hivemind have played Okami, Viewtiful Joe, or Shadow of the Collosus?

  7. The Sombrero Kid says:

    dirt 2 is going to be directx 11 and it looks a world apart from the console version.

  8. Larington says:

    I did tend to sit there and look at the install screen for Planetside the first time or two I installed it because it actually gave up some useful info relating to how to fight.

    As far as install music, generally I go with the view of letting the player turn it off if it is regarded as necessary at all. I once lost my temper with the install for one of the C&C games because it was playing music FROM the CD at the same time as installing FROM the CD. Grr.

  9. Xercies says:

    I also feel that more maps should be included in games. Especially open world games. I was disappointed that Fallout 3 didn’t come with a map since all there other games did.

  10. The Sombrero Kid says:

    sorry for the million posts, i’m commenting as i listen, but i totally agree with jim about wipeout fury HD and the cost of a ps3.

  11. Psychopomp says:

    What the SMRP on a child’s soul?

  12. Jamie says:

    jesus, would it have hurt to do a quick audio test? At least the early podcasts didnt have hissing that drowned out the talking…

  13. Lack_26 says:

    Things would be easier on Headphone, but it’s usually too quiet, one side doesn’t work and my speakers are a foot and a half tall and about 1 deep.

  14. Psychopomp says:


    You don’t think to do those types of things, until something goes wrong. There’s a reason it took America so long to think of the Secret Service.

  15. Benny says:

    Speaking of portal not lasting long enough, you should try the Portal: Prelude mod. Very well polished and the puzzles are quite hard (ala advanced mode levels)

  16. John Walker says:

    I’m fairly certain that neither of us suggested that Portal wasn’t long enough. We were celebrating its length!

    Hi Jamie, sorry we let you down, we’ll make sure you get your money back immediately.

  17. GreatUncleBaal says:

    Technical tip: I just cleared my ears (you know, doing the holdy-nose thing), and the sound quality is much better now. The podcast was clearly recorded at a different pressure level to where I’m listening to it – use a barometer next time please :)

  18. Psychopomp says:

    I’ve spent the last five minutes trying to figure out how to say this, but Portal was as long as it needed to be.

  19. Jetsetlemming says:

    This podcast sounds horrible, and when you guys talk quietly I can’t understand what you’re saying at all, and that’s with my media player’s volume maxed and my speakers turned up. One of you dudes needs to learn an audio suite, or make a friend that knows how to use one (I do! I do!), as some work can reduce these issues significantly. For the time being, I took this podcast, stuck it in Vegas, and put it through a volume and noise gate filter to make the quiet bits a bit more audible, and at the same time cut out the static for the most part (You can still hear it quietly). I uploaded it to Filefront:
    link to
    I didn’t go all the way with it for fear of silencing some of the mumbling but it’s significantly more audible as it is with 30 seconds of work on it.

  20. Kieron Gillen says:

    Mr Lemming: Downloading it to have a nose now, but I note it’s 93Mb. We’re going to have to downsize that by about half.


  21. Benny says:

    Ah yeah you’re right, but my simple mind strugles with wording things properly. Either way the prelude mod is briliant for giving more of the same fun to the game.

  22. Jamie says:

    You rps guys dont make money from the adverts? Cheers JSL, nice one!

  23. Freudian Slip says:

    Yeah theres loads of money in Evony ads! When not playing video games the RPS crew swim in their money like an episode of DuckTales.

  24. Jamie says:


  25. Jetsetlemming says:

    Kieron: In my rush to listen to the podcast (I was editing it purely for my own benefit :P), I forgot to set my codec output settings down to FM Radio from its default at 320Kbps. Whoops!

  26. Jetsetlemming says:

    er, 256. Either way, too much.

  27. Jetsetlemming says:

    link to
    22MB, 64Kbps. Sounds the same as the 256Kbps version, though that’s less becuase it’s compressed well or anything and more because I’m pretty sure that’s just what the original recording was at :P

  28. TooNu says:

    Was going to say that your other recent podcasts don’t have that background distortion but then I got suddenly affraid of John Walker owning me on teh internets.

  29. The Colonel says:

    I think one of the major differences between Morrowind and Oblivion was the death of imagination behind the art. Some of the cities and environments in Morrowind were incredible. Like the town made of giant crabs, or the towers you had to float between. All rich, all unique. I haven’t completed Oblivion because it made me want to kill myself, but the few hours I did grab were so uninspiring. It felt like someone had just made a program which randomly spawned everything in the landscape without any real thought, just in order to create a land which was bigger than Morrowind. I almost stopped playing after realising that the game’s main, biggest, and really only city was a: the first thing you encounter and b: smaller than my local Sainsbury’s. Going through portals took you to a clichéd “hell” environment. Does anyone agree with me, or did they just hide the creative stuff in Oblivion for only the real fanboys to discover?

  30. VelvetFistIronGlove says:

    Jetsetlemming is a hero.

  31. Psychopomp says:

    “It felt like someone had just made a program which randomly spawned everything in the landscape without any real thought,”

    Actually, they did just that, and went in afterwards and tweaked some things. They bragged about it in the original Game Informer article.

  32. Sitting Duck says:

    David Cameron. Twat. His inevitable rise to power makes me lose all hope in my fellow man, and confirms that our democracy is merely an illusion. Three old Etonians; PM, deputy PM and Mayor of London. What have we done.

  33. Xercies says:

    @The Colonel

    I felt exactly the same as you when I played Oblivion.

    I do agree that this looks like to be either the last or second to last console generation. What happens after this i don’t know, I feel that that sony could be correct and the PS3 could be going for another 5 years maybe even longer. The problem I see with that is that the Games Industry stagnates and doesn’t go forward enough. People will soon realize that there just bringing out the same games all the time and so the Game Industry will be totally destroyed.

    Evolution is the key of the gaming industry, if you just have The Xbox 360, and PS3 all the time people will just not bother anymore.

    @ Sitting Duck

    Hey don’t diss Boris Johnson, I like that guy…

  34. Nick says:

    What about my mum’s sound quality?

  35. MacBeth says:

    I too was astounded when XKCD was the answer to a question on University Challenge… and felt obscurely validated in some way.

  36. Sitting Duck says:

    @ Xercies:
    There is nothing remotely likable, or human about that abomination. “lets vote for Boris, he was quite funny on have i got news for you, and he has funny hair” Only the Italians can should be more embarrassed by their voting record.

  37. Freudian Slip says:

    Sitting Duck doesn’t like Berlusconi because he’s had his way with Duck’s mum.

  38. The Colonel says:

    Can’t wait to see what he pulls at OUR olympic opening ceremony though

  39. Sitting Duck says:

    @ slip: Nah she’s too old. silvio likes em fresh into adulthood ;)

    @ Colonel: His cock?

  40. The Colonel says:

    Interesting if true.

  41. Comment system, what comment system? says:

    Damn filefront is blocked at my work. You guys should really take Mr.Lemming up on his offer to help with your podcast production.

  42. Switchbreak says:

    For the game Love, I’m pretty sure it’s Ian Dorsch doing the soundtrack. Or at least he did the song from the trailer.

  43. Alex says:

    I have to dispute your remarks about Space Quest. IV and V were great fun, but 6 was awful (the first sign was the switch from numeral to number).

  44. Gassalasca says:

    I just wanted to say that I loved Gears of War graphics for the preciesly same reasons John didn’t, and that I completely agree with him when it comes to soundtracks.

  45. Crispy says:

    Couldn’t bring myself to listen to more than 60 seconds of this. It sounded like I was listening to a very loud conversation in the next room while simultaneously placing my head inside my PC case. Pity.

  46. dbr says:

    In a timely and efficient manner, a heavily denoised version of the podcast:

    link to

    Sounds somewhat like it was recorded in a bathroom (hm, perhaps the noise was added to mask such a shoddy choice of recording locations?).. Regardless, it’s substantially more listenable, I’d say..
    – Ben