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Nerds Without Pants   

Nerds Without Pants Episode 242: To Build a Bear

Who didn't love pumping quarters into Oblivion in the arcade???

 Welcome back to Nerds Without Pants! Friend of the show John Gholson returns after a very long absence to talk about games we wish we could play again for the first time. It’s a fun topic with lots of asides and trips down memory lane. We also talk some Fire Emblem, Like a Dragon, and PSVR 2, plus much more!

00:00 – 10:57 Girls on Film

11:06 – 1:43:40 STAGE SELECT: Games we wish we could play again for the first time

1:43:53 – 3:52:30 CONSUMPTION JUNCTION: John’s making movies, Midnight Suns, Fire Emblem Awakening, Fire Emblem Engage, Like a Dragon Ishin!, Theatrhythm Final Bar Line, PSVR 2

3:53:07 – 4:05:44 VIDEO GAME CAGE MATCH: Dr. Muto vs Vexx

4:05:53 – 4:14:26 Outro

If you have money to spare, please consider pitching in to Megan McDuffee’s Gofundme for her next music video here:



STAGE SELECT: What are some good ideas in video games that went wrong and should be tried again?

VIDEO GAME CAGE MATCH: Plants vs Zombies VS Scott Pilgrim vs The World


Twitter: @NWPcast


Our theme song “Relax” and interstitial tracks “To the Maxx” and “Moody Grooves” are written and performed by Megan McDuffee.




Super Step Contributing Writer

03/01/2023 at 02:41 PM

STAGE SELECT: I think it has been tried again and I think they even fixed it in the remake, but the time system in Majora's Mask really just needed a more intutive way to speed through and wind back through time. I like the idea of time traveling through a set of predetermined character movements, but the whole point of time travel is not having to wait, dammit!

VIDEO GAME CAGE MATCH: Never played Plants v. Zombies, but thanks to the magic of paying Sony $120 every year for all their "free" games, I have played Scott Pilgrim and it has a BITCHING soundtrack, so that one. 


03/01/2023 at 03:51 PM

The Ultima game that Garriott was talking about was Ultima IV: Quest of the Avatar, which is widely considered a high point in the series, including by Garriott himself. It was a huge departure from the way RPGs were/are traditionally designed, which was a response to a combination of the 1980s moral panic going on in the US in the wake of Reagan's election, and Garriott's own concern that the earlier games encouraged too much thievery and senseless killing from supposed heroes. There was no overriding villain to defeat. Your quest was to become the Avatar, the personification of the Eight Virtues of Britannia. As such, besides the pilgrimage to the shrines of the Eight Virtues, almost every action you took in the game was judged by its own karma system. Fighting thieves, bandits, and monsters would raise your valor, while letting animals like snakes escape would raise your compassion, and so on. The shopkeeper was a test of the player's honesty.


I attended two Distant Worlds concerts, one in St. Louis, and one in Omaha where I got to meet Nobuo Uematsu and have him sign my FFIX cover art. In the one in St. Louis, Susan Calloway performed the opera song that Celes sings in FFVI. 


03/01/2023 at 04:46 PM

Stage Select:

I'd like to see Nintendo take another crack at a 3-D third-person Metroid. I prefer third-person games in general, and one of the problems with the Prime games (and I do love the Prime games) being first-person is that the format doesn't allow the same kind of acrobatics and use of power-ups as the 2-D games do.  Other M had its heart in the right place. Maybe make it more open in structure like Prime and Super, and have Platinum Games, Monolith, and Retro collaborate on it. Each of those studios has something to bring to the table for a project like this. Just make sure there's an adult in charge who can put everything together without making it a case of too many cooks in the kitchen, and make it a true 3-D Metroidvania with an open world. There are plenty of templates where acrobatic 3-D action has been done successfully.

Cage Match:

Gonna go with Scott Pilgrim. It's got solid beat-em-up action combined with a bangin' soundtrack. 

Suggestions for future cage matches:

Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure vs. Kartia: World of Fate. I'd love to see the listeners take this one on.

Fire Emblem: Three Houses vs. Valkyria Chronicles (1 or 4). 

Fire Emblem Engage vs Tactics Ogre Reborn

No Man's Sky vs. Elite Dangerous. Or Star Citizen (snicker). 

Atari 50 vs. TMNT: The Cowabunga Collection

Metroid Prime Remastered vs Hi Fi Rush (two games that were shadow-dropped by their publishers at Direct events). 

Cary Woodham

03/07/2023 at 07:57 PM

I missed the Stage Select where you talked about games we'd like to revisit again for the first time.  I would've replied to that earlier, but I let time get away from me.  So I want to do that now if you don't mind.  Some I would love to play again for the first time include Klonoa (I forgot how much I loved those games when I played the recent collection.  And that  Chrono Trigger, Katamari Damacy, Okami, Link's Awakening, and Rocket Slime.

As for this stage select, it's hard for me to think of bad games with good ideas.  I think Sonic games have good ideas in them, but there are few games in that series I like.  I guess Yuji Naka has a lot of games like that, such as Balan Wonderworld.  I guess we won't be seeing any games from him for a long time, if ever.  Another fairly recent game that has a sequel that just came out is Octopath Traveller.  I liked the ideas of that game, both visually and gameplay-wise, but it was just too grindy.  So I won't be getting the sequel.

Even though we have totally different views on some things, I think it would be fun to be on the podcast with you all sometime, too.  I have NO idea what we'd talk about, and you'd have to be patient with me as I do my podcasts very old fashioned and dated.  But maybe that can be something we can think about for later.  Your podcast is interesting because of your different views of games than what I have.


03/10/2023 at 11:28 AM

Stage Select: My biggest disappointment with Octopath Traveller was how the story failed to come together in any meaningful way. What I think would be cool is a game with multiple characters like that but the story changes based on who you have in your party. So if monsters are terrorizing a town, having a warrior in your party would give you the option of hunting and killing the monsters, whereas a beast tamer might give you the option to capture the alpha monster and stop the attacks that way. Or if you're trying to solve a murder, one of your classes might enable you to look for clues and piece together what happened. Or, if you have a necromancer, you can just raise the victim and ask them. Whatever choices you make will change what options are available to you later on. Making a game like that would be a spreadsheet nightmare trying to keep everything straight but it would be so cool to play, and I'd rather play a 10 to 20 hour RPG that's eminently replayable than something that takes 100 hours.

Cage Match: Let's line up the versus here. I think Scott Pilgrim would beat the plants by neglecting to water them and the zombies would beat the world because, honestly, that's what always happens. Then it would be Scott Pilgrim vs the world OF ZOMBIES and I just don't see him winning that fight.

Cage Match ideas:

-Skyrim VR vs Breath of the Wild Nintendo Labo VR

-Super Meat Boy vs I Am Bread

-Dead or Alive Extreme Beach Volleyball vs Super Mario Sunshine


03/10/2023 at 01:03 PM

If nobody submitted Easter Bunny's Big Day vs Punky Skunk as a cage match I'm super, super disappointed in this community.

"...O-N-A-C-I-O-U-S.  Perspicaticanonacious."
"Correct.  You're our winner, if you can get past the dodgeball round."

And that's mini-games.  I just want to get really good at the game part of the game, you know?  If I wanted a fishing game I'd stop playing whatever it is I'm playing and go get a *good* fishing game.  Nintendo and Square-Enix are particularly bad about there weirdly difficult mini-games outta nowhere.  A special circle of hell if they're required to complete the game or get otherwise good side content.

This is a long tangent and feel free to skip it or read it later, but the topic reminded me of something I think applies.  I'm currently playing the GameBoy Color remake of Dragon Warrior III.  It adds a feature that every monster has a slim chance of dropping a monster medal.  To get to the extra superboss, it requires that you get a silver medal of every single monster in the game.  I'm not exactly sure of the odds, but you have a something like a 1:16 chance of getting any medal drop (although treasures seem to get in the way too), less if you're trying to get a higher quality medal, from the last enemy you kill.  Thankfully, the game only requires you to get 2 bronze medals to equal a silver.  There's also a gold medal (non-upgradeable) that does nothing but the last superboss challenges you to do it... and rewards you by being asleep (which actually is a punishment as it prevents a refight).  Also, some enemies are extremely rare to appear in and of themselves, so enjoy the 1:128 possibility of a gold medal from a monster you weren't even sure was actually there in the first place.  Well, actually enjoy getting bronzes and silvers from it too because the game has an incremental system for medal drops.  I don't know where that applies because it's not even a good idea in the first place, but I'm glad games (even grindy ones!) have mainly gotten far away from garbage like that.

I had the Scott Pilgrim vs The World remake crash on the last level of the game, which would have required me to replay the whole extra long level if I was going to try it again (hint: I did not), so I'm using my video game gambling funds to pay the referee to look the other way.  Plants vs Zombies wins!

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