Shiren call

Another day, another failed pun in the blog title. This one would work if “Shiren” were pronounced the way my coworker Justin pronounces it — shy-rin — but every time he does that my ears explode in agony. Which means that I’m inflicting pain on myself with this one. I guess. I dunno, I just work here.

I mention Shiren the Wanderer because I’d noted before my intention to record a roguelike-themed episode of Active-Time Babble next week to mark the launch of Shiren on Wii. Our ATB plan still stands, but David talked me into appearing today’s episode of 4 Guys (I agreed mainly to redeem my dreadfully awful work on yesterday’s Retronauts), and I ended up going into a fair amount of detail on both the genre (which I imagine is well outside the purview of this particular show’s primary audience) and on Shiren in particular.

I’d like to take a moment to note that I played a fair amount of Shiren today and my criticism of the game in the show — about it possibly being a bit too unchallenging — has been washed away. I still haven’t seen a game over screen, but once I made it into the Karakuri Mansion, the game upped the stakes. A good roguelike isn’t necessarily one that kills you a lot, it’s one that keeps you stressed out and anxious with every step, and Shiren definitely works in that regard. I’ve found myself measuring each action carefully and constantly riding the ragged edge of loss as the monsters take my hit points down to 1 or 2 and I take a desperate last swipe in the hopes that my killing blow will be the first to connect. Shiren’s structure had me worried at first, but no: This is no Pokémon Mystery Dungeon. Chun Soft is playing for keeps.

Of course, the real star of the episode is Ray, making his debut on the show and showing the rest of us up. These days, I’m pretty much just marking time until he takes over my job.

7 thoughts on “Shiren call

  1. I think you and Ray should have a voice imitation contest to determine ownership of said job. Some of my favorite moments from the podcasts you gents have been on are the throwaway gags like that. His shockingly good Banjo versus your near perfected Kermit? Whoever wins, WE win. ‘We’ meaning the listeners, I guess.

  2. That retronauts episode was pretty awful honestly and it made me write this letter about how stupid you people are (j/k). Maybe it was like that because you went on the episode backwards with the main topic first and then the retro news/extras later. I enjoyed it nonetheless. I’m also looking forward to shiren for the wii as I’ve liked the DS one very much.

  3. I fell asleep while listening to the 4G1U episode. Not very interesting, but was the news week really so slow that you had to lead with Sonic 4?

  4. Retronauts was great, however. Lunar can be a somewhat boring topic to discuss, but you guys sidelined the topic just enough to keep it fresh. The first time I heard the Sega CD version of the intro was when I bought the PS1 version in 1999, and listened to the included soundtrack CD. I thought it was amazing and energetic, and still do. Fully agree with the tone in that portion of the discussion and elsewhere.

    The GameArts part was good too, but didn’t anybody really remember Magic Obelisk?

  5. Shy-rin? Ouch. That’s almost as bad as when the guys on the Major Nelson podcast kept talking about Eye-karuga.

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