Diecast – Twenty Sided

Videogames, programming, and videogames.



Diecast #344: Are We Having Fun Yet?

As I mention in the show, I’m a huge fan of watching people bumble bumble their way through Hitman levels. The thing is, it’s hard to find videos of this. A lot of videos are well-rehearsed runs by players who know what they’re doing. If you have any suggestions, please leave me a link in the comments. Thanks!

Anyway, sorry for the lack of content last week. Things will probably continue to be be a little spotty around here until I’m fully recovered.

Your browser does not support the audio element.Direct download (MP3)
Direct download (ogg Vorbis)
Podcast RSS feed.
Hosts: Paul, Shamus. Episode edited by Issac.

Link (YouTube)

Show notes:

00:00 Apex Legends Does Not Want Players

I really do want to know what’s “offensive” or “unacceptable” about “dudecon”.

12:00 Day[9] Plays Returnal

Here is the stream in question:

Link (YouTube)

And here is the Hitman III gameplay that made me laugh until I couldn’t breathe. Note that I’m not promising that you’ll find it funny. It’s just that I’m genetically predisposed to laugh at chained blunders and cascading mishaps in Hitman games. It’s annoying that Hitman III is a stupid EGS exclusive. I have the previous two games on Steam and I’m not willing to break up the set.

Oh, and speaking of obnoxious bullshit surrounding the Hitman franchise…

21:48 Mailbag: Timed “Online Events”

Dear Diecast!

I am a long time fan of the Hitman series (with an obvious exception) and an early backer of the “new” Hitman, the start of the most recent trilogy. Despite it raking in very positive niche reviews (like Super bunnyhop – who, btw, I’d like to hear on the show again some time), I bounced hard off of it. Upon reflecting why, it wasn’t the gameplay or level design, but the timed “elusive” targets. Not to delve too deep into that feature, it’s just a relatively small piece of content that requires the game being played at a certain time, and after that it is gone forever.

Now, I am neither a compulsive “100% game completioner”, nor am I particularly against games-as-service online integration. But that feeling of having missed out for good, robbing me of the potential to “fully” experience the game at my own pace put me off so much that ever since it was introduced, I never even started up the game.

What’s your thoughts on that? Do you feel the same as me? Or do you think it entices you to play the game even more?

Also, I’d really love to read one of those huge epic plot and mechanics deconstructions of the new hitman games by you.

Kind regards
Norbert “ColeusRattus” Lickl

29:48 Mailbag: Most Played Games on Steam

Dear diecast,

Have you checked the most played games list on steam lately?

I find it quite the interesting list. Apparently some games stay fun
forever (GTA V still in the top 10) and others are hardly played anymore despite being very good (Metro 2033 Redux). I think the replayability factor is what keeps games on the list. Interestingly, despite Shamus claiming that nobody wants to play Left 4 Dead anymore L4D2 is on place 23 with 17,554 concurrent players at this very moment. Also I find it hilarious that Cyberpunk 2077, the most anticipated game of 2020 is now already been overtaken by Age of Empires 2, a game that launched in 1999.

Are there any thoughts that you want to share on this list?

Best regards,


This is a fascinating topic. I keep coming back to this and thinking about different aspects of it.

Also, as I mentioned on the show:

  • Warcraft led to Warcraft 3 modding, which spawned DOTA and the entire MOBA genre.
  • Warcraft led to Starcraft, which led to the birth of televised esports.
  • Warcraft led to the birth of World of Warcraft, an industry-defining smash hit that’s been imitated by dozens of other games, yet towers over other entries in the genre.

I think you can make the case that Warcraft (or Warcraft II, depending on where you want to draw the line) is the most influential / culturally important PC game of all time? Given the above list, I’d certainly put it ahead of venerable titles like Doom.

Maybe Minecraft outshines it? I dunno. It’s hard to compare “groundbreaking procgen educational creativity smash hit” with “invented a genre, launched an industry, and enticed a bunch of rubes to waste billions trying to copy one particular game”.

41:15 Mailbag: AoE 2: Definitive Edition

Dear Diecast,

Since December I have been playing Age of Empires 2: Definitive Edition. As of this moment, the game is ranked 50th on the most played games on steam list https://steamdb.info/graph/ <https://steamdb.info/graph/>. I wonder what you think of this game, it has some properties that I think you might find interesting:

– First and foremost: it comes with a random map generator that can generate a wide variety of map types and has a 32-bit integer random seed. The maps are well balanced and are used in competitive play. It is also fun for playing single player. I wonder what you think of this, as both of you love procedural generation.

– The AI does not cheat. While the old AoE2 AI did cheat, the new
Definitive Edition AI is smart enough to play the same game as you. It is very good at it too. The hardest difficulty levels are extremely challenging.

– The art style makes it so that heavy graphics cards are not at all
needed. (This was true even when the old game launched in 1999, the game was mostly CPU-limited). This can be played on a very low end PC.

Additionally it comes with 151 single-player scenario’s which all have voice acting. The multiplayer scene is alive and kicking. The excellent map generator provides endless replayability for both single player and multiplayer. I am curious what you think.

Best regards,

Also, here is Rutskarn’s Elder Scrolls Series that we talked about.

50:11 Mailbag: Daggerfall


I wish Shamus good health! May the «But what do they eat?» live long and prosper!

Now to the question itself. Considering that your blog has one of the prominent topics of procgen and that you are familiar with the Elder Scrolls series, is it not weird, that you don’t talk or mention Daggerfall or Arena? What’s your opinion of them and have you ever played them?

Best regards, DeadlyDark

53:57 Mailbag: Fantasy Goes Mainstream

Dear Diecast

I know Game of Thrones wasn’t Shamus’ cup of tea but with its end and popularity has come the advent of numerous high-budget fantasy shows being put into the production from multiple studios and companies, HBO has a multitude of GOT related prequels coming up starting with House of the Dragon, Wheel of Time is finally getting a show and so is Percy Jackson, and Amazon is developing their own show set in Tolkien’s Legendarium with a ludicrous budget of $400 million on just the first or two seasons. Was wondering how Shamus and Paul is feeling about this.

Sincerely, Donkey


 2021-05-24  n/a