TSM Episode 278: I Was a Teenage Dictator

It is said that he exited the womb with a shout of, 'We need living space!'
From an early age, Caspius showed certain ‘autocratic’ tendencies…

Download: Produced 2014.06.29

Caspius, Ethos, SiliconNooB, and Imitanis buckle in for an exciting ride through the Cricket and Video Game news, stopping off for a moment to peruse long-forgotten elements of Caspius’s childhood, spent ruling with an iron fist over the local park.

June Donation Tally: $320 (TARGET TRIPLED!?!)
1) $100! “Make Bup Pay Up” Challenge Podcast
2) $150! 1x “Lusi-vs-Bup 1v1 Discussion” Segment
3) $170! 1x “Lusi-vs-Bup 1v1 Discussion” Segment
4) $190! 1x “Lusi-vs-Bup 1v1 Discussion” Segment
5) $200! 1x “Caspius’s Game Reviews, in Verse” Segment
6) $225: 1x “Caspius’s Game Reviews, in Verse” Segment
7) $250: 1x “Caspius’s Game Reviews, in Verse” Segment
8) $300: 1x “Select-a-Misery Reviews: Caspius Plays/Reviews Readers’ Choice”

DiceAdmiral, FIRST donator!
AbsurdistKobold, Donator PART II
Savante, Tertiarius Patronus
Billy B., Donator the FOURTH
Les E., The Pentadonator!
Imitanis, SEXY NUMBER SIX Donator!
Martin B., Supreme Donator of the Seventh Heaven
Savante, AGAIN, Dependable Duodonator VIII!
DefChaos, Donator Fantasy IX
Ethos, Homo Decadonator.
Dancing Matt, Eleventh Donator a-Leaping!
DiceAdmiral, AGAIN, The Double Dodecahedron-rolling Donatagon


  1. Congrats on the successful donation drive!

    Appreciate the shout out /great memory Lusi. Switched names for most things online awhile ago. Never left, but could always post more I know.

  2. Looking forward to at least one Game Review in Verse Segment. ;)

    Keep up the good work everyone.

  3. Well, see, you’ve been here all along. Shows how well we pay attention!

    TWO game reviews in verse segments are now commissioned!

    After the third game review in verse segment comes the dread SELECT-A-MISERY stretch goal, under which the readers select a game (by nominating and then voting) which I must first play, and then review. Luckily, with only 22 hours to go, we’re probably safely out of that danger.

    I’ll need to dust off my pen and start looking through my game library. I think something from lamentable Persona series could use a bit of a shellacking-in-verse. Or from the similarly depressing Xenosaga games, too!

  4. My apologies for going silent as long as I have. I hope I did not cause any worry! All is well with me, and I hope for the same of you. I will absolutely make a greater effort to contribute to this community and try to make my continuing presence more tangible, as far as posts and a screen name will allow. :)

  5. hmmm, Caspius, is that title about you? because you still are a dictator in your realm.

  6. @Drachonus – That was the point I was trying to make!

  7. “I was a live baby.”

    The above statement doesn’t mean that I am not alive now. Using the past tense doesn’t mean that all parts of the statement were true only at that instant, and never again.

    “I was a teenage dictator.”

    Because I was. That is not in dispute. It doesn’t mean that I am not a dictator now. All it says is that, at that time, I was a teenage dictator. I can remain a 30-something dictator today.

    I am amazed that this very elementary principle of the English language is lost upon you, Ethos.

  8. Relevant Quote:
    Mitch Hedberg: “I used to do drugs. I still do, but I used to, too.”


    I think you should read an excerpt of William S. Burroughs’ Beat/Modernist classic Naked Lunch for the Bup-Pay-Up Cast. Particularly the “Hassan’s Rumpus Room” chapter.

    One of these days I’m going to go to a cricket match (there’s a bunch of teams in my area, and the United States’ only ICC certified stadium), but every time I remember this the season has just ended.

  10. @Dancing Matt: I hate you.


    1) You just pushed us into Select-a-Misery territory. Yes, DiceEnsign also did, but you did it first.
    2) You have the nation’s only ICC Cricket Ground in the country (and now I know where you live, immediately, without even having to look!), and yet YOU STILL CHOOSE NOT TO ATTEND THE CRICKET. GO TO THE CRICKET! YOU LAZY BASTARD! GO!

  11. Unless I’m saying you still ARE a teenaged dictator!

  12. @Dancing Matt: How can there be no Cricket matches going on? It’s the height of Summer. This is PRIME CRICKET TIME! bwarrggghhhh

  13. Summer in South Florida is like Winter elsewhere, except opposite. It’s just too hot to be outside all day long, multiple days in a row. So I’d imagine the local teams manage their schedule accordingly. I’ll keep checking and report back when I’ve been to a match.

  14. I feel certain that Caspius.com readers will vote for me to play and review Final Fantasy VII.

  15. No, you get Final Fantasy XIII. Play VII on your own time, but feel free to write a comparative analysis of the two if it pleases the pooch.

  16. We’ll be putting up a nomination in the next feature slot. Here’s a tentative schedule (keep in mind that I haven’t discussed this with anyone yet):

    – Nominations for Select-a-Misery (Week of 6 July)
    – Bup: The Seriously Independent Podcast (7 July)
    – Select-a-Misery Voting Round 1 (Week of 13 July)
    – Lusi vs. Bup & Lusi’s Versiform Reviews 1-3 (14, 21, 28 July)
    – Select-a-Misery Voting Round 2 (Week of 20 July)
    – Select-a-Misery FINAL Vote (Week of 27 July)
    – Select-a-Misery Review (mid-to-late August)

  17. I lament that I was not able to donate during this month, but I did harass a number of friends to read the site. Unfortunately, many of my friends only speak Spanish and therefore didn’t have the slightest clue about the site’s content.

  18. @Gyme: “many of my friends only speak Spanish and therefore didn’t have the slightest clue about the site’s conten.t”

    That’s probably for the best, really!

  19. @Gyme- I was almost in the same position, except that I have 4 friends that understand english, but they are just a bunch of lazy people. The sad part is that they like jrpgs, don’t play games like call of duty and they like retro games, their loss I guess .

    What to vote now is the question.

  20. INFO BLAST Makes Bup Pay

    This week’s panel:
    Silicon Noob

    Donated this week: Billy B., Les E.
    Cumulative total record holder: Imitanis
    Single Donation record holder: Brettsuo

    Donators eligible for drawing:
    Dancing Matt
    Absurdist Kobold
    Billy B.
    Les E.
    Martin B.

    I’m very happy to see the donations so high, but a part of me is annoyed that my odds of winning a game at the end of the year are steadily decreasing.

    On readings:
    I think Lusi does a pretty decent job differentiating the voices

    Cricket News:
    England vs Sri Lanka
    Cptn Cook

    Towerfall has local multi-player only
    What is your opinion on this Opposite Opinion?
    It makes a lot of sense to me.

    Guacamelee coming to XBone

    Last of Us Remastered

    WoW Expansion Beta

    HearthStone packs
    What are wings? Are they the in-game currency?

    Caspius’s Dicatorial Documents

    Sims 4 Bills > Swimming Pools

    XBone family sharing
    Microsoft must be off of their training bikes with all of the back-peddling they’ve been doing.

    Phil Spencer Kinect

    BANttlefield 3

    Iwata Illness
    Spoiler: It’s not bananas.

    Imitanis Literature Corner
    Locksley Hall By Alfred, Lord Tennyson
    I’d need to sit and read this slowly to really get much from it. The rhythm and rhyming was nice, but that’s all I can comment on from just the listen.

    Autumn reading:
    Interview With a Vampire

    DiceAdmiral’s Brettsuo Gaming Moment
    This week I played the Firefly Board Game. I’ve played this game once before and found it tedious and it overstayed its welcome at ~4 hours. This time we played a shorter length objective card and it took about 2 instead. The objective cards have an expected time printed on them and the listed time for this card was 2, but I find it hard to believe that this is an accurate expectation despite completing it in exactly that time. I say this because I won the game and I had very nearly everything handed to me very easily with few hiccups. Any player having even a bit of trouble with this would easily take longer. As far as gameplay goes, the game feels very ‘Firefly’ and I can recommend that any fan of the show try it, if not necessarily buy it. It does have a bit of a habit of overstaying its welcome though, so you’ll get the most out of it if you can recognize the jokes and crack them yourselves.

  21. Is the comment approval process gone entirely? I know I get no freebies on names, but I’ve previously been stuck on having more than two links also, and I’m not seeing the typical filter message for when something gets snagged by the filter.

  22. @DiceAdmiral: You typed Imitanis’ full name in your post, and it got spammed in. I’ll fix it and pull it out.

  23. OH, The literature corner! I’ll remove that from the template for next week.

  24. This upcoming podcast has the potential to be quite legendary.

  25. Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeevvvvvvvvvvvviiiiiiiiiiiiiillllllllllpppppppppppppppppaaaaaaaauuuuuuuuullllllllllll!!!!!!!!!!!!! Evilpaul!!!!!

  26. I think is going to be hard to see Nate losing since he has a lot of confidence in his future triumph . It is going to be the podcast of all the podcast!!!!

  27. Caspius’s constitution sounds really funny and it is interesting that he wroted it when he was 12 .Who doesn’t want to be a dictator?

    @Caspius- Why didn’t you wake up the guy that was drooling over you? o.O . You shouldn’t had to endure something like that.

  28. @Ferchu: I tried! He was a narcoleptic or something, because I could not wake him.

    His phone woke him up immediately, however. People!

  29. @Caspius -He was a jackass even in his sleep, you tried to wake him up, he doesn’t wake up, his phone rings and holy molly he wakes up because it could be important. -.-

    My condolences by the rap you had to endure all the way to ontario. Sadly I understand how annoying can be to be forced to listen noise (yes, it’s noise not music) that you don’t want to hear, and really loud.

  30. @Ferchu: I believe it was some kind of outing for children of Windsor schools, because they all boarded together and left together. There was a teacher of some sort who came and went, but never asked them to turn off the loud music they were playing on a crowded train at 0600.

    Courtesy is, for most people, something entirely foreign to them (except when they demand it of others).

  31. @Savante: But do you comment on his fucking articles once in a while?

  32. He’s on another pantheon; how does one beckon to the Bup? Truly? I think Bup is going to come out swinging in the next podcast, out of spite. You can all taunt him to break, he’ll battle back twice as hard just to give the rest of us the good old “fuck you”. I am, in fact, worried that he will be so serious that it’ll be boring.

    I was at work listening to 109 a few days ago and had to go on break when my name came up. I had completely forgotten about this, and there’s Bup curb stomping me in his glory. Like 3 years ago, tears shed in laughter. I really should comment more on his articles.

    As to why I was listening to old podcasts, I remembered a lot of old Oliver phone call interstate crime podcasts. They were all funny. Missed that shit.

  33. NOT to say current podcasts haven’t had their moments! But I revel in the Chaos, those were chaotic days. Julian and Gyme went above and beyond a few months ago with that Chinese Checkers podcast.

  34. And THAT’S why SN and Gyme aren’t allowed to be in the same room together anymore.

  35. I love that it is evilpaul, of all the readers, who has become the legendary phantom, the one who can drop a single comment every year just to keep his fans believing.

  36. @DiceAdmiral: What a load of horse-shit. One of the most disingenuous things I’ve ever read.

    FPS games have managed since the late 90s, and they handle a lot more information per frame than Towerfall does. Some of them (TF2 springs to mind, Borderlands 2 is another) are MUCH faster than Towerfall.

    As for 2D platformers (including those with a vs. mode!) I’ve seen plenty that handle it just fine–and I don’t mean “Super Smash Bros.” levels of fine. I mean genuinely non-laggy simultaneous gameplay. I’ve even seen these produced by TINY developers (the fan-made 2D TF2 game again springs to mind).

    Despite what they claim, there are very obviously analogous (or perhaps identical!) methods used that could just as easily be employed by the people who make Towerfall–they simply choose not so to do.

    Let me translate the article into TRUTH for you:

    We’re not very good at optimising our netcode, and also we’re lazy. It’s easier to make excuses and prevaricate than it is to actually buckle down and include a feature which has been a staple of computer games for twenty years now. So, please buy our game even though we’re too fucking lazy to include a feature that lets you play with your friends. We’re going to characterise this as ‘how the game is meant to be played’, but of course it is really down to the fact that we’re bone-idle. Excuses ARE easier than work! Also, we sound way more hipster and artistic this way!”

    To borrow a mental image from Kisaki, I imagine them twirling their fucking moustaches and jacking off as they talk about how ‘local’ is how it is ‘meant’ to be played, and that they want to ‘control’ the ‘artistic experience’ Because, being hipsters, they’re totally against whatever is de rigeur. If online multiplayer is the standard, they’re going to show how ‘hip’ they are by listening to everything on vinyl and playing everything local, and then claiming how ‘superior’ or ‘more authentic’ it is.

    Here’s the thing: how does including online multiplayer as an option HURT the experience for the people who want to play it locally? I have NO problem with there being a local multiplayer mode. Sure! Include it! I think that’s great. It should have that. But ONLY that? No. That’s ridiculous.

    You’re welcome!

  37. So you think that the section on how those FPS games rewind a few miliseconds to see what you ‘should have hit’ is just BS? I admit that you might be right, especially since the developer who wrote the article is guilt of this specific sin.

  38. @DA: That may well be the case (or not, I don’t know all of the methods employed, and that may or may not be one of the tools in the box), but the result for PLAYERS is a seamless and generally lag-free experience–and frankly, that’s what actually matters.

    It doesn’t matter how much lag there is behind the scenes as long as players never experience it at the business end. That’s a matter of optimisation of netcode and game design, but ultimately these things can be made more or less invisible.

    Certainly, a lossy network connexion or high latency to the server will cause even these efforts to fail, but that’s down to the individual user. If I choose to play with my friend in, say, AUSTRALIA, then I can expect more lag (probably around 120ms) than if I play with my friend who lives a couple of hours away (probably less than 20ms). And it’s worth pointing out that 20ms of latency doesn’t mean that I (or anyone else) *see* everything happening 2/10s of a second late–because the netcoding and the game design are set up in such a way that the 20ms latency are negated by things like local processing and staggered sending.

    I used to play UT99 on a dial-up modem with my friends. I don’t *ever* remember complaining about lag, despite being a little camping sniper bitch. That was in 1999 on a 28.8k connexion! ON A LANDLINE!

    I’ve played so many online games since then, and in nearly all of them lag was not a problem. Many of them required split-second responses, with collision detection, projectile physics, environmental effects, and so on–elements far more complex than Towerfall, which is essentially an artillery game that needs to transmit only projectile launch time and character location (projectile movement can be calculated on each user’s end, as long as position data and launch time are known. This is one of the MAIN ways to get around lag issues).

    So no, I don’t buy it. It’s a very smug, self-satisfied response which probably jacks off the vintage 70s shirt-wearing sector of the population, but one only needs to look at the variety and capability of current online multiplayer games–to say nothing of those from the past two decades–to know that this is a line of horseshit. And that’s in despite of whatever Ben “Industry Shill” Kuchera may claim.

  39. @Lusi I think the Goblincast was the first inkling it may not be a good idea to have me and Noob on a podcast together.

  40. Yes, that was a sort of hint.–the way that Germany invading Poland was a ‘hint’ that Hitler probably couldn’t be trusted.

  41. I forgot that I got a month ban for the Goblincast sequel. Remember to always think about the children. Always.

  42. I used to play Quake, Quake II, WarCraft II, Diablo, and Starcraft on a 56k modem all the time, and if those games could do it then, Towerfall can do it now. But we’re talking about a game originally designed for Ouya, right? So why expect it to make any sense at all?

  43. This Towerfall stuff really does defy belief!

  44. Shalott is fantastic stuff. But no, it’ll be something a little more modern. I try to mix it up for the sake of broadness.

    Not to worry: we’ll be revisiting Tennyson again!

  45. There’s more of Shallot? Does that provide some context for what happens to the Lady of Shallot and why? Maybe I’m just too dense, but it sounds like she just looks out at Lancelot because he’s singing and then she dies because she’s cursed to keep weaving. I feel like I’m missing something significant.

  46. I’m just confused about what happened. Are we supposed to ask those questions? Who was the Lady? Who cursed her and why? Why did Lancelot come to the island and sing? etc…

  47. @DiceAdmiral: Well, some of these things presume extant knowledge about the Matter of Britain.

    The Lady of Shalott is Elaine. We don’t know who cursed her in the poem, but it is a magical spell which will doom her if she ever looks out at the real world. Instead, she must work her loom, and she looks out at the world by gazing at its reflection in a mirror. When she sees Lancelot, she is so taken by his vision that she turns to see his real form, thus condemning herself to die.

    Lancelot is there simply because he happens to be riding by, as a Knight errant. In other versions of the Lancelot and Elaine story, Lancelot and Elaine have a relationship by which Elaine has a child (Galahad). Elaine then dies and her body, arriving in Camelot by boat, is a silent condemnation and shame to Lancelot: something which has no outwardly identifying signs of meaning (their relationship being a secret), but which is nevertheless known/discovered to the key figures (Guen, Lance, etc.). In those versions, Lancelot is away from Camelot after having had a sort of disagreement with Guenivere, the details of which vary in the stories (she is jealous, she thinks he is not attentive enough, they mean to end their affair, etc.).

    This episode is situated within a larger story, the details of which would have been common knowledge to Britons of the time (and probably still amongst most literate Britons today). However, other readings of the poem borrow from the New Critics (looking only at what is in it, and ignoring all else). Wikipedia gives a few such readings:

    Modern critics consider The Lady of Shalott to be representative of the dilemma that faces artists, writers, and musicians: to create work about and celebrate the world, or to enjoy the world by simply living in it. Feminist critics see the poem as concerned with issues of women’s sexuality and their place in the Victorian world. The fact that the poem works through such complex and polyvalent symbolism indicates an important difference between Tennyson’s work and his Arthurian source material. While Tennyson’s sources tended to work through allegory, Tennyson himself did not.

    This is super-general and these readings are pretty ‘ordinary’ in the sense of being somewhat unsophisticated, but there’s nothing wrong with them, and I would say that any of them are perfectly sound and readily defensible.

  48. That is incredibly helpful, thank you.
    Lancelot really is sleazy, he even cheats on the woman he’s having an affair with.

    I looked up that poem as a result of hearing Loreena McKennit’s adaptation, which I liked. She also has a musical version of It was an English Ladye Bright which I also consider quite good.

  49. Have to forgive me, I’m not up to (iTunes) speed yet with all the early MAP podcasts.

    Whatever happened to that English guy, with the ‘Brummie’ Accent?
    He disappeared like a soap opera plot, no doubt I’ve missed a show or some there.

    Probably not the greatest question, given an age – Love that dude BTW.

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