Could GTA 6 Be the Dawn of a New Era for Rockstar Games?

Find out in our latest podcast transcript of Spawn On Me with Kahlief Adams!

For this week’s podcast transcript of Spawn On Me, host Kahlief Adams discusses Jason Schreier’s recent article about Rockstar Games and the development of Grand Theft Auto 6. Could this mean a kinder, more progressive game? Time will tell! Kah also talks about Rollerdrome and Multiverses being pretty damn awesome, as well preparing for his first trip to EVO!

(Also available on Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts!)

Spawn On Me (08/01/22): GTA 6 COULD BE THE DAWN OF A NEW ERA FOR ROCKSTAR GAMES Podcast Transcript

Transcribed by E. Powers

Kahlief: Spawn On Me is the premier podcast spotlighting people of color. Every week we talk news, what we’ve been playing, and tell you who’s invited to the cookout. Our show is all about talking about gaming through a prism of Blackness, because we are the culture. Welcome to Brookago, y’all.

What up, what up, what up, everybody? This is the Spawn On Me podcast. What the deal be? I am Kahlief Adams. This is the Spawn On Me podcast with Kahlief Adams, so you know who’s hosting it? Me! It is me in the flesh, doing my thing, rockin’ with the best. Yeah! Anyway. Super excited to be here with all of you on this wonderful Friday.

It is hotter than the hell’s butt cheeks here in Portland, Oregon. It is extremely hot. It is hot in a way that is not good for anybody’s body, mind, or soul, but we are here. We are rocking it out. We are here live on twitch.tv/spawnonme, rocking and doing the thing for all of you at home. I am very excited to be here today, because not only are we doing the good work of rocking with everyone here live on our live recording of the show, but of course we’re always, always doing fun work with, you know, everybody in the industry who’s hopefully rocking with us and doing good stuff there. We’re always looking to be, you know, in the mix with a lot of you in terms of how we are, you know, connecting with you all and making fun things happen.

One of the things that is really important for today is that we are also streaming for charity. We are streaming for Colin Kaepernick’s foundation, the Know Your Rights Camp. Again, it’s all about empowerment. It’s about knowing what your rights are when it comes to engaging with law enforcement, knowing what it is to kind of really fundamentally understand your constitutional rights to do some things and to not comply with other things that feel like they are not in the mix. We’re trying to raise $5,000 for them over the next two days. You know, we’ll be doing a stream tonight with the live show and then tomorrow morning. If you’re listening to this on the recording on Monday, you have already missed it, but for the folks who are watching the live show, we’ll be going again at 10:00 A.M. PST, playing some games for charity and our friends over at Know Your Rights Camp. So, I am super hyped to have all of you here.

Again, this has been a really interesting and fun week. Again, a lot of stuff is just happening in the space, and the gaming industry is doing its thing. The Beyoncé album came out, so everybody’s freaking out about Beyoncé. I’m not gonna talk about all the thirsty pictures that Beyoncé put up in the world and had me drooling at my TV screen and my phone. I’m not gonna talk about that, ’cause that’s just rude, but it’s so true. Why, Beyoncé? Why are you so fine? Good Lord, Beyoncé. How did Jay-Z land Beyoncé? I still don’t understand how this worked. I don’t understand how a man that looks like Joe Camel still bagged one of the baddest women on the planet.

I don’t understand it. It makes me sad, but it makes me also happy, ’cause it gives people who aren’t super sexy a lot of hope. [laughs] It’s one of those things of being like, well, you know, you might not be that person, but also…hey, what you gon do? What you gon do? It is wild out here in the fields to see that that is what went down in a real way. So, all of that to say, [laughs] you know, I’m happy for everybody involved. That’s all I can say. I’m just happy for everybody being in the mix and doing their thing. And hey, I hear the album is good. I’m gonna listen to it tonight. Gonna get a bottle of Moscato, get that ready, and sit back, listen to some Beyoncé, and feel my feels in the most way.

For this episode…if you missed last week’s, please go check that out. Again, we’re always building fun things into the show. We’re always thinking about the new ways that we can connect with all of you as an audience, so please make sure you’re subscribing and checking out the show there. Our numbers have had a significant dip, so please, please, please remember to follow the show, especially if you’re on the Apple Podcast platform, make sure you’re getting our live episodes, our new episodes every week and making sure that you’re a part of the conversation.

Please send me feedback as well. I put a call out for feedback, to get more of that in towards the show, ’cause again, I think…I have a vision of what I want this show to be, but I want this show to be for you. I want this show to really reflect and be good for all of you who are watching all of the madness that goes along with a Spawn On Me episode and the work that I do in the world for all of you at home. I’m gonna be sweaty a lot this episode, if you’re watching the video version. If you’re listening to the audio version, you’ll have no idea. I will be cool, calm, and collected, like I always am. So, this week, in terms of the show, there isn’t a lot of actual news news this week. There’s a couple of things that bubbled up and popped up and that we want to talk about, and the best place to do that is in the 411.

[music]

So, this week on the 411, we have a couple of topics to dig into. It is a really interesting time in the gaming space, because we’re now getting a little bit more information about what potentially could be game…game? Grand Theft Auto VI, a really awesome piece done by Jason Schreier, fam of the show. He’s been on an episode prior. Go please check that out, ’cause he’s actually really, really dope. I know he gets a raw deal in terms of the vibes on the internet, but Jason is pretty dope. I rocks with him. He has good energy. Put out this really great piece.

I think one of the parts that people have been thinking about from a game perspective with Grand Theft Auto VI has been: One, what is this game gonna look like? ‘Cause I think we’re all very, very curious about what that’s gonna wind up being. Two, from a technological standpoint, are they gonna be pushing the envelope in terms of grandeur and in terms of graphical fidelity, in terms of scope, because now we’re seeing, I think, that that is the newest and most important layer for this generation of games. I don’t think it’s gonna be just how pretty things can get. I think it will get there towards the back half of the generation, but it’s really gonna be about how big and expansive can you make worlds feel. I think that’s gonna be what really drives home a lot of where we see marketing kind of go towards, development, move in that space.

I am very, very hopeful to see more of, you know, where that’s gonna land from a game perspective and if that actually leads us to getting really cool experiences that we, you know, we haven’t seen before. I think that’s gonna be something that is really gonna bring home what I believe or what I hope these parts of the internet are gonna wind up being and these parts of the games that we’re gonna play are gonna wind up being. I think that’s gonna– we’re gonna see so much more energy put towards.

And what came through in the Jason Schreier piece was a couple of main topics. One was the culture of Rockstar feels like it has changed a little bit. It feels like it has moved in a different way than what we’re used to, and I feel like that has also become something in which we are really gauging what this game is gonna be able to be because of what we’ve known Rockstar to be before. Shout out to Ezekiel for the huge raid as well. Thank you so much, and thank you for everybody who’s coming into the show.

The layer of Rockstar thinking about how they are trying to be better about their culture as a team and as a studio, the way that we are thinking about, you know, the kind of terseness and the layer of potential toxicity that has come across with a lot of the games that we’ve seen in the GTA series before, which was always this commentary and this parody of the world that we see at large, it winds up changing so much of what we think of for what a GTA game can be, because it used to be this really harsh toned, also mixed in with some light kind of, you know…what’s the best way to put it? Like, let’s be honest, it used to be a lot of dick and fart jokes. That was the vibe for a lot of Grand Theft Auto, and I feel like that layer of what we wind up seeing potentially could go away in a game like this.

It feels like now the way that this works is we’re gonna have to kind of feel like what Grand Theft Auto can be in a new, different world now. Like, we’re not gonna have a lot of the same vibes that we saw in the space because of the fact that the audience has changed in a much bigger way.The whole vibe for what commentary can look like in a space that used to be extremely sarcastic and extremely cynical has changed a lot in the way that we are now kind of moving, and that is going to be something that is going to be very, very different. That’s gonna be something that has to have changed throughout the way that we think about Grand Theft Auto and the way that we are gonna play this game. This game is gonna be very different in a world that has changed so much since the last game came out.

I was talking to my good friend Jeff Cannata and the folks over at DLC earlier today about this very, very specific thing, and the thing that I keep thinking about and pulling into my mind about all of this has been: so, if they’re talking about not punching down as much as they used to, if the energy from the community and from most gamers has changed in a really profound way, if you’re now digging deeper into having a female protagonist, a femme protagonist, there are so many things that go along with that from a cultural perspective, from a storytelling perspective. Are they willing and are they able to do this work in the ways that we had hoped? And will we wind up seeing so many gamers who were so used to that level of what GTA was come to this new game and potentially be really disappointed because the Rockstar that they knew and grew up with is no longer that Rockstar?

On the other hand, does that also change the way you think about this game from a development standpoint? Where one of the things I talked about was to say: if you’re gonna go for more progressive or potentially progressive work in the space, are you able to tell if the maneuvering that you did to get to this new kind of more thoughtful version of Rockstar, does it actually pay itself off in– can you actually tell if you’re actually missing people in the mix of players that you used to have?

Are a lot of those folks coming back just because of the name of the game? Are you gonna actually lose all the people who were on their soap boxes when the announcement went out, who were talking about, “Oh, this game is too woke now, because it has a woman in it and they’re the lead,” and all this stuff. Do you wind up losing all those folks? And to a certain extent, would you even be able to tell, because that game is just gonna make hand over fist money anyway? Does it work in the ways that you’re thinking about from a…has this changed enough for us to stand out and be different without digging into some of the grossness that we’ve seen in GTAs of yesteryear?

That’s gonna be a really wild thing to see, and will be really cool to see what happens with this game, knowing that to a certain extent, that’s what most people come to GTA for, is like, oh, let me run over some people. Let me get to five stars and blow up as much stuff as I can, and the story will hopefully capture me in a way that feels good enough to be able to do some of that work.

It is going to be a wild time, for not only press, but for game makers, ’cause I think this will be a really interesting litmus test about where people are going to vibe with stuff. Does it actually really matter if you are “selling out to wokeness,” air quotes, and being more progressive with the way that you’re making games? Does that take a financial hit to your game or is GTA too big to fail in that way? Is Grand Theft Auto just too big to not have to worry about catering to audiences that they didn’t cater to before? Can they get their cake and eat it too? will actually be something that’ll be really interesting to see kind of play itself out in those ways. It is going to be something that is gonna be at the top of my mind when playing and watching all of this stuff.

It is also gonna be a thing that is going to really be this moment for gaming that’s gonna potentially change some stuff, right? Like I think maybe companies become less scared to do that kind of work publicly. Maybe if the game is too big, they’ll wind up seeing some of it actually work in a way that pulls that together in some good ways. Wallstormer in the chat says: and also they can potentially reach out to new audiences by being more progressive in their game. Absolutely! This could be the thing that changes their public perception in a way that is also removed from what we got when we were in the Jack Thompson days, where everybody was like, well, this game is really for you to just kill sex workers and potentially do, you know, the run of the joke that we always kind of see.

I think it’s gonna be fascinating. I think this is gonna be a thing that we’re gonna continue to have to watch, because it really just does become this new case study on if your game is so big and it has this kind of cache that you can do kind of whatever you want. I think you’ll get some folks who will come back and do that. You’ll have some of the folks who are gonna be mad because a woman’s on the cover, which is wild because they’ve had women on the cover before, but just now that you get to play them, now people get mad. Super wild that that’s a part of the equation for folks. But I am infinitely excited to see more conversations, not only about how Rockstar has changed their company culture and if that is gonna give us better games, but also how does this change the landscape for players in a way that makes a lot of sense?

A couple of things that are really important that I did want to talk about that I found fascinating as well, besides them having a woman on the front and being in Miami again, which I’m actually kind of excited about. I think going back to Florida, going back to that kind of South Beachy Miami area, in an era where this generation is about pretty lights and about pretty water. It’s about reflections. It’s about RTX technology. It’s about all of that stuff of how do you get ray tracing into games and having all that stuff. If they have gone into those areas for this game, this might be one of the most beautiful games that we’ve ever gotten, because we know they do art direction extremely well. I think they do social commentary pretty well. But knowing that they’re starting and they’ve been doing this for so long on development…one, I really hope this thing is on Unreal Engine 5. I think that’s gonna rock.

I also hope that this is a game that they’re gonna continue to build out, and they’ve talked about that with DLC kind of coming in the flavor of more areas, and when we talk about more areas, we talk about more cities. I don’t know what that means yet, so I don’t want to get myself too hype. I don’t want to get myself too excited yet, because new cities could mean, oh, we’re gonna expand the city blocks, and then you’re gonna get to play in the suburbs or, you know, the country parts of Florida. Oh, we get to go to the Bayou now, as opposed to just sticking around in the city. My real hope is that this game goes into a spot where we’re not talking about, oh, we’re just gonna go into Miami, but they expand, right? You’re like, oh, you gotta get on a flight, and you gotta go to New York. What?! Like, oh, I want you to do a job over in New York. You gotta go meet your Cuban and Rican brothers over in the Bronx. Let’s push you out there and let you go that way. What? That could be nuts if they are able to get that into the mix.

So, lot of really interesting conversations that come out of Rockstar, that Jason Schreier piece. Definitely go check that out. You know, let me know how you’re feeling and the comments below when we put this up on YouTube, about how you’re thinking about GTA moving in new spots. And I’m just fascinated to see what this is gonna wind up being from a technical standpoint of what we’re gonna see. That first trailer that comes out that does like, “This is what GTA 6 is gonna look like,” going to melt the internet, melt the internet in a big, huge, ridiculous way. So I am very, very excited about that in all the ways that you care about.

Next story up is about new PS5 firmware. They’ve rolled out some new firmware to selected users. I currently have the firmware downloaded on my living room PlayStation, so I’m gonna be checking that out even more. I’m gonna be checking out more of the work that’s happening in there. The biggest parts of that were 4K support, so the games will now support 1440P at native resolution, and that display will super sample down to 1440P for a smoother image. Although most TV sets have 1080P or 4K resolutions compatibility, 1440P, also known as QHD, is a very popular resolution and it wasn’t in there. A lot of these displays, many running with VRR. It just wasn’t a thing that was working really, really well. So variable refresh rates are gonna be very, very important moving forward, and I think that’s gonna also be something that’s gonna happen in a bigger way.

A couple of the other things that were in that mix that I thought were actually pretty smart and good were they’re changing up a little bit of their folder system, which I think is actually necessary. Their folder system currently isn’t one that I’m really, really happy with. I just don’t think it does what it’s supposed to do in terms of giving you good ways to find your stuff and bubbling that stuff up to the top. It just doesn’t do that stuff well, so I’m happy to see that they’ve moved in that space and kind of helped to move that conversation in a bigger way.

And there were a couple of other things that popped up that I think I want to dig into. [typing] I want to make sure I’m getting it right. So again, 1440P video output for folks in there. Game lists, your game library can now create game lists, which makes organizing your games even better. So it’s not folders, it’s more lists. You can have 15 game lists that have a hundred games per list, so you can make your “All my driving games,” “All my shooters,” “All my scary games,” all that kind of stuff is in there. Comparing 3D audio to stereo audio. I think that is actually really important if you have the PlayStation headset. It does their 3D audio extremely well, and you really do get that sense of surround around you in really good ways.

Easy access to progress activities I think also is actually something they needed to do. So it says, “In resuming a game, in progress activities are often shown prominently at the top of the game hub to make it as easy and fast as possible to get back to where you left off.” That actually– I think that’s a feature that a lot of people don’t really pay attention to. I think that the card system on the PlayStation is actually pretty brilliant. It works really, really well. The problem is it’s underutilized because it’s not a thing that you really play around– you don’t really do anything with it. It’s not a thing that often gets used, because you kind of know where you left off the last time you finished a game or when you finished a round of something or when you continue to play something. You kind of already know where you left off.

The thing that I think is really good about the card and hint system has been: oh, it’ll pop you right back into story-wise some stuff that you had missed. Or the hints are actually pretty good, especially if you’re a completionist. If you’re a completionist, there are so many things that you wind up missing so often, because you’re continuing to try to finish up the main part of a story, or you’re like, oh, I don’t have time to go find all this stuff.

They do a really good job, sometimes even with video hints, of showing you some of the cool stuff that’s in there that you might have actually missed. And I think that is a part of the OS that I think they actually have over our friends over at Microsoft. I think they’re thinking about the player in smart ways. I just need that stuff to be more in front, so that you can actually get more energy towards the card systems, like I feel like you need some good ambassadors who are able to talk about that stuff well and show that stuff off in a way that makes sense. And you need developers to continue to program for it. You need people to invest in it and buy into it in a way that makes sense.

A couple other last features, some new social features. Requesting to share your screen. You can now request party members to start screen sharing, to watch their gameplay. This was actually a thing that, again, I think people don’t really use, but they should. This is also one of those moments where I remember playing Demon Souls and I had no clue where I was going. I was super, super lost, no idea where I was supposed to go. I jumped into a room with a friend of mine, hit the screen share, and they were like, “Oh, you’re totally in the wrong spot. You just need to go here and then make a left here and then go on this other spot. There’s a monster around this corner. Make sure you worry about that and kill that,” and then I was in so much of a better position once I had finished my screen share. It was super useful in a way that, you know, it’s a small thing that you don’t get a chance to see often, but it changed my gameplay experience. It actually made that session doable so that I wasn’t sitting and wasting time and running around in a circle and not knowing where the hell to go for some of that stuff.

Last couple things are: you can send stickers in your game messages. No one’s gonna do that. [laughs] You can view new friends’ profiles. Sure. You can go look at people’s stuff, but at this point, most folks who are in those spaces, you kind of know exactly who you want to talk to and don’t want to talk to, so I think that those things are already in the mix already. So, good stuff coming out of PlayStation. I think Share Play is actually really, really smart. I’m very, very excited for it, and I rock with it. I think it’s a really cool thing that I wish more people would use. And I wish that, again, there was more incentive to use it, like imagine if you got some trophies for doing screen shares, you know? or Share Plays or any of that kind of stuff. That would be rad if you would be able to do some of that kind of stuff, right? Super cool if you were able to do that in an actual way.

Last story for episode 443– I’m sorry, 444 of the Spawn On Me podcast. Again, thank you to everyone who came through from Ezekiel’s stream. You know, we’ll be giving you all some love, any folks who followed and shared during our break, but always a big fan of Ezekiel in all the work that he does in the streaming world. Brilliant, brilliant human being. Fantastic dude. Love his stuff, so very humbled that he would share his audience with ours tonight.

Last story up is: I’m going to Evo! What? I’m going to Evo. I am very excited about going to Evo. You have no clue. I am going to finally go to the biggest fighting game tournament on the planet after spending so many years watching Evo from home and cheering everyone on and watching everyone rock out on Mortal Kombat and every Street Fighter ever known to man. I will be covering it as press, and I will be competing in my first offline tournament ever! First offline tournament. I haven’t fought people face to face in a video game fighting game since…Summer Games Fest, but that didn’t count, [laughs] ’cause that wasn’t an actual tournament. But this is my first actual offline tournament. I’m gonna go to the biggest show on the planet and go and rock out and see how far I can go.

So, I’ll be playing Mortal Kombat 11 Ultimate. That is my game. I’ll be going in as Fujin. I actually hadn’t played the game in about eight to ten months until literally last night. I booted it back up, got a couple rounds in with a friend, and we went at it for about an hour or so, and it was brilliant. It was super fun. I got like all the juices back together. It’ll be very different once we’re in, you know, meat space again, where we’re actually like next to each other and playing, ’cause you’re, you know, palms sweaty mom’s spaghetti. You’re gonna be up in there and not understand how buttons work again, and you’re gonna freak out and not know anything, and then all the moves you’ve ever done in your life are just gonna run out of your body, and then you’re gonna suck, and you’re gonna go 0/2, and then you’re gonna feel sad about everything that happened in your life.

My thing is, my goal is to at least beat one person in my bracket. That’s all I care about. All I care about is not going 0/2. I care about not getting scrubbed out super hard, really fast and early, and I’m hoping that I do Brookago proud. I hope that I rock for you all and do that stuff. There’s no way in hell I’m gonna be on TV. Like I’m not gonna be on any streams or anything, like no one’s ever gonna see it. But I have…a camera crew is gonna be coming with me to go watch it and do it and stuff, so we’re gonna be, you know, going and getting coverage from the show live proper. I’m gonna be in the arena for Sunday, for the final, so they’re gonna have a press spot for us. I’m gonna be real close. You’ll see me screaming up in there and wilin’ out. From what I know, they have those spots ready and set up for us, so I am going to be very, very happy.

Royal_Martin in the chat says, “Just don’t be the first person out.” That’s my fear. I don’t want to be the first person to lose. I don’t want to be the like, they’re like, all right, so where did you end up in, out of all the entrants? You’re like the first one to die. I would so cry. I’d be so upset. I can’t even front like I would be okay with it. I would totally be mad. I’d be salty as hell. I’d be like, “God damnit! I thought…I thought I was a contender, and I’m not a contender. I got scrubbed out.” And we’ll see.

So I’m gonna– if you’re a friend of mine on PSN, for the next couple of days, you’re gonna see me doing nothing but playing Mortal Kombat and getting better, because…even though I was off for about almost a year off Mortal Kombat, I did really well like against my friend who is a really good Geras, like really good Geras player, and I was like, I was holding my own and getting some wins. There were some things that that match up is just bad for me, but in total, I was still able to do some of the stuff that I, you know, had in my mind, and as a game plan, you know, you adjust on the fly all the time, and you figure out good ways to maneuver and do all that kind of stuff. But for the most part, I was like doing my thang thang, and I was all right. I wasn’t too bad.

So, I’m so excited to finally meet some of my fighting game heroes. I’m dying to get some time with potentially SonicFox to talk to him. Kitana Prime, Tasty Steve. There’s so many folks. Sakura, I want to talk to her. You know, I’d love to get Persia on the show at some point to talk to her about the work that she’s been doing in the space. There’s gonna be vendors there, so I’m gonna go home broke. It’s gonna be fantastic. All of that kind of stuff is gonna be, you know, a part of the equation for my trip to Evo. I’m going to try to have all of the experiences that you can have at an Evo.

The one thing that I am a little bit sad about is going to tournaments like this is like, you’re always…you know, if you’re one of the people who’s doing this so late and you haven’t really entrenched yourself within the space, there’s just people who you want to be friends with, and you’re just not gonna be able to do that, because they have friends already. Like, that’s that one thing of like, oh, this is my crew. These are my people. You, new person who I don’t know, especially with everybody wearing masks at the event, hopefully. You don’t get a chance to like do some of that work, especially if you’re not known, and I’m an unknown quantity in those spaces. I’m sure there are people who know me because of the gaming industry at large, but in terms of like the fighting game scene, I am a nobody. So like, going up to people and being like, “Hi, I’m such and such. I’d love to interview you.” That’ll be a fun thing to kind of try to do in that spot.

So, we’ll see. I am very, very excited. I’m so hyped to rep for Brookago. My name when I’m gonna be there is gonna be SpawnOnMe, so if we ever do get a chance to be on stream or anything else, you’ll see it in some form or fashion. I’ll be hoping to get some shout outs on stream from somebody who recognizes me, ’cause that would make my weekend in a real way.

So, much love. We’re gonna take a quick break, gonna give some shout outs to some of the folks who came through tonight on our break, and then we’ll be back with some of what we’ve been playing, we’ll shut down the show, and then we will continue on with our charity stream. We are raising money for Know Your Rights Camp, Colin Kaepernick’s foundation that teaches people, you know, more about their constitutional rights and all the ways that they can keep themselves safe when engaging with law enforcement and all of those things therein. So, enjoy a couple minutes of music. We’re gonna run an ad on Twitch, and we’ll be right back after this.

Danielle: Hey, everyone. It’s Danielle Riendeau, the Editor In Chief here at Fanbyte. I like movies, and you probably do too. Join me and my incredible co-hosts, LB Hunktears and Fernanda Prates, on You Love to See It, Fanbyte’s weekly premier movie podcast. Every Thursday, we explore the wonderful world of film, from old classics, cult favorites, and plenty of under the radar treasures. We pick a different theme each month and really dive in, with a combination of in-depth analysis and breezy chat on everything from monster movies to Patrick Swayze classics. You Love to See It is available at fanbyte.com/podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts. [film reel noises] Oh, movie’s starting. We’ll catch up later.

Kahlief: Welcome back to the Spawn On Me podcast. I’m your host, Kahlief Adams. If you missed the first part of our show, you missed a banger of a conversation around GTA 6 and all the goodness that is coming out of Rockstar. Some company changes, some cultural changes, all of that goodness in yo life. In our what we’ve been playing, I’m gonna talk to you about a couple of things that I have had a chance to dig into.

One of the first games– if you missed our Rollerdrome preview, please go look that up. It’s on our YouTube channel. Spent a good time digging into it. It’s a short watch. It’s less than seven minutes long, and it’s great, ’cause all I’m doing is gloating about this game that I now love in a real way, and this game is brilliant. From the folks over at Roll7, you are in this game that is a mix of Tony Hawk…I don’t know, it’s Tony Hawk and a shooter. It’s like all of the cool things you could wind up putting into a game together.

Roll7 and their pedigree of making games around skateboarding and skating is pretty well known. I think that they’ve gotten a pedigree of making those kinds of games in a way that feels really, really good. But what makes me really excited about this game is, man, if you ever thought about what Sable would look like as a shooter, this is what this game kind of is. Sable, which is a media darling, indie darling of a game, is pretty dope, but getting a chance to shoot enemies with guns while doing a 560 tail grab flip? Sinspitterx says, “Tony Glock pro skater.” [laughs] I love that. It’s like, oh, I’mma bust a cap in your behind while I do a ollie no flip. It’s so great.

But a couple of things to note. So, one, the setting is in 2030. You’re in the not too far future. There’s a shady company that is holding these competitions, and you are a new participant. And when you’re playing the game, your objective is to clear out an area, right? So you have multiple ways you can do this. Most of it is basically shooting things with different kinds of weapons, but what winds up making it really cool is the kinetic nature of the game in and of itself, of you trying to figure out your way through a level while also finding a good way to keep your momentum.

The way you wind up getting ammunition in this game is you have to do tricks to get ammo reloads. So, if your gun is out of bullets, the only way to get more bullets is to do tricks and to grind on stuff—get your minds out of the gutter—or to find ways to interact with the world in a way where you’re having that momentum perform some kind of skating action. So grinds, wall rides, any of that stuff will give you more ammo with which to shoot more enemies with. And you would think that that would be a weird mechanic, but it feels really, really good and smart in the way that you wind up doing it every round.

The levels are small. They’re not that big, but they’re full of jam-packed enemies who are either shooting you and trying to snipe you or they’re ones that have missiles that follow you and track you. There are ones that are melee enemies, that if you roll past and they’ll hit you with a bat and cause some damage there. But you’re always trying to bounce between enemies so that you can keep your combo up while also giving yourself more momentum to get to enemies that may be a little bit higher on the map or around different corners.

Any of that stuff is always difficult because it’s like, how do I know where to go if I’m constantly kind of rolling through certain parts of a space? So you wind up playing in a way that is really different and interesting, because you’re moving so much around to keep your head on a swivel, that you sometimes are like, oh, well, I don’t know where to go to get to the next spot. Oh, where am I moving to get to this next area? The game treats you really, really well in terms of sending you to different spots around the map.

The story so far is also a little bit interesting. I won’t dig into it too heavy, because I think it winds up giving you a little bit too much, but I think what I’m finding is that that narrative of the evil corporation holding your debt and you kind of fighting through this competition to get out of it is a story that I think is semi-universal. I think a lot of people can relate to that conversation, and a lot of people can figure out what that means, but the story has this veil of secrecy around some of that, which I think is pretty dope.

The fam hiphopgamer has jumped into the room, and he is like, “Yo, my dude! The game looks dope. Jet Set Radio with guns!” Perfect description from the fam hiphopgamer. Shoutout to DanHevia coming through with some love and some subs gifted for the chat. I think that that’s one of those layers too, where it’s like, you find games like this that don’t necessarily immediately pull you in, but as soon as you do find that hitch and that hook, wow, this game is pretty good! It is really, really fantastic. I would say, please go check out, again, our preview. The game is coming out in a couple days. I think it comes out either on the 11th or the 16th of August, so it’s almost here.

It will be curious to see if they’re gonna do something different on PlayStation with the dual sense and the haptics that are in that controller. That would be really rad to see some different vibes on the guns in a game like this, ’cause they have a variation of a bunch of different guns. Like, you have pistols to start out the game, and then I got a shotgun, and the mechanics around the shotgun are a little bit funky. You get another weapon that’s a little bit later that is also something that would feel really interesting to shoot from a dual sense controller perspective. Really high on this game. Very, very excited about it, and I am just super ready for this game to come out so I can rock it in a real way.

Last story and last one for this episode of the show—again, thank you everybody for watching here on twitch.tv/spawnonme—is about Multiversus. Multiversus, man. I was not a Smash fan. I’ve never been a Smash fan, was never on that level, was not my thing, was not my jam. Multiversus is gonna pull me in real hard. I am decreeing it now. I’m saying it on the record. I’m saying it for the world, and I don’t know how this makes me feel. I am a LeBron main in Multiversus! LeBron James is in the game, and I’m maining that character, and I don’t know what to feel as a Knicks fan. I have to– I’m going with the GOAT, going with one of the best of all time. LeBron “I have a new hairline every season” James is the man that I am rocking with for my character for this game.

One of the things that I play in this game besides LeBron is also Velma from Scooby Doo. I actually really love her character in the game. Her character in the game is actually pretty fire. It’s wild, because it does a couple of things. Also, I must comment on this thing in chat really quickly. DanHevia said in my chat, after gifting a bunch of subs, “Bulls in six.” I want to ban you, but you just spent money in the room. That’s not funny. I don’t appreciate you, but I love you. But Velma is the joint. So Velma does this thing where her move is finding evidence in the map. So whenever you hit somebody, you hit them, these little booklets pop out of people’s bodies, and they call that evidence. That evidence, if you rack up enough evidence, you get to call a popo.

So that means Velma is basically a DT in disguise, who is trying to disguise herself as a crime fighter in a sweater, when she’s really the popo. She is really working alongside law enforcement. She’s really basically an undercover cop. Basically, Velma is doing her version of 21 Jump Street in Multiversus. But…I mean, look, I’ve exposed this for all of you now to share. Now it’s your job, ’cause I have now told you truth. Now as a Brookago and Spawn On Me community, now it’s your job to tell everybody else that Velma is the popo. [laughs] Stevoaome says, “Velma is a Karen.” Oh my God! “Velma is a Karen” should be the name of this episode. I should change that for the name of the episode. Velma is a Karen. Wow! Velma’s on her phone talking about, “I don’t know, but there’s some brown people in my yard. I don’t know. They made some noise in the back. They were playing their music too loud. I think I smell jerk chicken. Where’s my phone? I think I smell seasoning! Someone call the popo!”

So, her ending of all of that evidence is she literally calls the cops. A cop car pops up out of the screen and tracks down an enemy and puts them into the cop car, and the cop car tries to jump off the edge and kill you. Holy crap. Karen…Velma is a Karen. And it sucks too, because there’s so many cats who love Velma, ’cause they be thirsty, ’cause they be like, “Yo, we know you holding underneath that sweater. We know.” We know Velma got a big booty. We know! But now that Velma’s a Karen, I don’t know if we can support this. We can’t support this in a real way. That sucks. Today was a good day, and then we lost it, because now we found out that Velma’s a Karen. Damnit. [sighs] At least we still got Beyoncé. Anyway. [laughs] “Dem cheeks doe,” yeah. Yeah, I’m saying. It’s one of those things of like, you know. Anyway, that’s gonna get into a whole other show. That’s gonna get into Spawn On Me after dark, and we are not gonna do that, ’cause we’re trying to raise money for Know Your Rights Camp! [laughs]

Anyway, massive love to you all for coming through tonight. Chat has been fantastic. We’re not going away in terms of the stream, but we are going away for this episode of Spawn On Me. Again, thank all of you for all of your wonderful, wonderful words, all of your words of encouragement, all your words of encouragement for me going to Evo for the first time. I’m sure, hiphopgamer, I might see you at Evo. I’m hoping to see you at Evo, if you’re in the chat. But it’s gonna be a very, very wild time in the next couple of weeks. I am just so hyped to go to Vegas again and just excited to see, you know, fighting games at the highest pinnacle of the tournament scene.

I will have lots of videos to share when I come back. We’ll talk about it on the next episode of Spawn On Me, ’cause I’ll probably wait till later in the week to get that show out. Usually we do it on Wednesdays, but with me traveling on Thursday and being in Vegas for most of the weekend, it makes some sense for me to kind of hold off and take some of that coverage and do some of that when we’re doing that later on in the weekends, so expect maybe no stream for weekend, but we’ll definitely have content for all of you at home.

So, if you’re listening here on twitch.tv/spawnonme, hang out for a little bit. If you’re listening in the audio version, again, thank you very much. Please subscribe. Please continue to share the show. Give us a five star review on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, all the other places that you can give us a review. Please do so. It gives us so much more visibility towards what we’re trying to do.

We’re also putting up our next Som-thing Epic episode. Use our creator code SPAWNONME in the Epic game store. Our next episode of Som-thing Epic is going to be about Rumbleverse! So I am very, very excited about that, ’cause we got a chance to bring on Adam Heart, who’s the lead game director on Rumbleverse to talk about the game, which again is another game that I am very excited for, so make sure you’re checking out that video as well.

Until then, much love, and we will see you next week. Everybody who’s here on Twitch, stick around, ’cause we’re gonna switch over to video game stuff in a minute. Everybody else, we’ll see you all next week. Much love, and peace!