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About


Twitter: @TheDustinThomas

Greetings and salutations.

TheDustinThomas here, you probably don't know me, but I write things here on Destructoid from time to time. Occasionally I get on the front page:

The Most Inexplicably-Often Rented Games At Blockbuster

The Top 10 Videogame Pro Wrestlers

A Retrospective of Pro Wrestling Videogames from the Perspective of a Pro Wrestler

I'm also the host of a pretty sexy gaming podcast that I do with a couple buddies of mine. You can download and subscribe to it here. You should totally do that.

All of my games writing you can find on DToid, but I also write about other things on my personal blog. Here's my top 5 most read blogs:

Let Me Tell You About My $250 T-Shirts

Tempting of the Doon

5 Ways Getting in Shape Has Messed with my Head

Tim Lambesis: A Fan's Struggle to Understand

Why I Already Dislike Planet Fitness

You may notice that most of those blogs are somehow related to pro wrestling. Why? Because I spent 10 years as a professional wrestler before retiring in October 2013 due to back injuries. I actually wasn't too bad.

A bit about me? Well, obviously I love to write. It's not a paying gig yet, but I'm certainly trying to make that happen.

I'm a happily married man, and my wife is smokin' hot.

I have a huge, manly beard.

God comes first in my life above all else. I'm a leader at my church, as well as the head of our media department.

I've been a metalhead pretty much my entire life.

I'm also a die hard fan of The Simpsons.

Other miscellaneous fact.

-Dustin
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As most of you probably already know, this week the videogame industry celebrated the 20th anniversary of the release of the PlayStation. Say what you will about the Sony brand these days, but back in 1994 they truly revolutionized gaming not only technologically, but they also opened up our minds to just what videogames were capable of. Little did we know at the time that it was just the beginning for the juggernaut we know as the PlayStation.

Sony had incredible foresight in the mid to late 90s when it came to knowing where the industry was heading and making sure they were at the forefront. The first time I put a CD in the PlayStation and actually heard the music coming out of the television, I nearly pooped my jeans. There are well over a hundred titles that are deserving of being on a top 5 list, there was something for everyone, and my list, while having some classic titles and all-time greats, will likely look different than yours. I wasn't an RPG player, so I'm sorry in advance, you won't see any Square Enix games on this list. If this were my wife's list, it would probably be nothing but Final Fantasy titles, and if it were my list...wait a minute, it is my list! With that being said, let's put some arbitrary numbers next to videogame titles and get this list started!

Honorable Mention: The Pizza Hut Demo Disc

I really miss demo discs. Of course, with the advent of online services in the console space, their usefulness is basically zero these days. The demo disc shown in the picture above is the one that I played ragged. Every Saturday was pizza night at the Thomas household, and there was nothing I loved more at the time than a stuffed crust Pizza Hut pizza (hence the reason I was an overweight child). But on this particular Saturday, I got more than just cheese and bread stuffed with more cheese, I got the Pizza Hut PlayStation Demo Disc. I assume they just gave copies to everyone, because I had no idea it existed and my mother certainly wouldn't have asked for it. Inside the sleeve was a shiny green disc, and the contents of that disc were nothing short of awesome for one reason only: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater.

Yeah, it had four other games, and I tried all of them at some point, but they all paled in comparison to Tony Hawk's warehouse level with Goldfinger's "Superman" playing over top of it. Ape Escape seemed alright, Crash Team Racing was fine, Coolboarders 4 didn't interest me much because I had burnt myself out on the series with Coolboarders 2, and after dying on one of the first enemies in FFVIII, I said "This is stupid" and went back to busting out heel flips and trying my hardest to complete the "Holy Sh*t Grind." Of course, any time I mention THPS (or have an opportunity to plug something), I have to couple it with the story that my best bud, Chris, who is a co-host on my podcast, played the demo so much that he busted blood vessels in his eyes. If you want to hear that story, you can listen to it here.

5. Hot Shots Golf

Hang around me long enough and you'll come to find that I'm an avid sports fan. I grew up playing baseball and basketball, I've always been a football fan, and of course there's my wrestling career. But I hate golf. So why is it that I've always loved golf videogames? In early January I'll be doing a top 5 games of 2014 list, and there's a very great chance that Mario Golf: World Tour is going to be not only on the list, but very high on the list.

Hot Shots Golf was another game that I first discovered on a demo disc. The demo featured the last three holes on the game's first course, and I must have played those three holes at least fifty times. I knew I needed more, so I traveled to the local Funcoland and found a used copy for a very reasonable price. I'm not entirely sure, but this may have been the first time I ever purchased a used game. I remember bringing it home and on my very first 18-hole round, I got a hole-in-one. I don't know why, but it was one of the most exhilarating moments of the PSone era for me.

I'm really glad I gave that demo a shot, because to this day, I've owned every Hot Shots game and it's seriously one of my all-time favorite franchises. Unfortunately, the series seems to be mostly relegated to Sony's handheld platforms, but here's to hoping that the PS4 will one day receive an entry in their beloved golf series.

4. Twisted Metal 2

Car combat games certainly existed before the advent of Twisted Metal, but in my opinion, Twisted Metal is the undisputed champ (and if you're going to say something about Carmageddon or Vigilante 8 you can just go ahead and shut up). I played the original very briefly whenever my brother's friend would bring over his copy, and the three of us would always battle to the death, taking turns in the one-on-one mode. I wound up winning so often that I was banned from picking Hammerhead.

Why wouldn't I pick Hammerhead? It's a friggin' monster truck!

But when Twisted Metal 2 hit the shelves, it was practically the only game I played for months on end. I had to see all the different endings. I had to discover every little secret. And I never got tired of blowing up the Statue of Liberty or the Eiffel Tower. I knew where every health pickup was. I knew where every weapon pickup was and which weapon was going to be there. I knew how to evade and attack certain enemies. I even had strategies for every level, for instance, on the Antarctica level, I would teleport to the lone iceberg and just sit there allowing my special attacks to stockpile and unload it on whichever AI enemy was bold enough to use that teleporter to come find me. Today, we call that "camping", but back then it was called "conservation".

At times the game can be frustrating and can seem almost unfair, especially when fighting Dark Tooth, but you're always having more fun than anything else, so it's easy to forgive. The thing that makes the game so great are the different locations. You go everywhere from a New York skyscraper to the amazon to Hong Kong. There's even a Holland level which is completely flat with nothing more than a couple windmills for scenery. That may not sound interesting, but it somehow works, and is one of my favorite levels in the game.

After TM2, I didn't really care about the series much until Twisted Metal: Black on the PS2, which is an underrated gem. I haven't gotten a chance to play the PS3 version, and while I've heard mostly negative things, I'm still curious to play it at some point.

3. Resident Evil 2

The original Resident Evil was the first survival horror game I ever played, and ever since then, I've been a huge fan of the genre. Then Resident Evil 2 came out took everything that was great about the original and ran with it. I also really enjoyed RE3, but it seemed like a step back. It went back to only having a single protagonist, back to only one scenario (down from the four you had with RE2), the monster designs were less inspired than before, and overall, while still a solid game, didn't grab me like its predecessor.

I've already swooned over this game in my Top 5 Resident Evil Games list, so I'm honestly struggling to find things to say about Resident Evil 2 without repeating myself. It's revered by many fans as the best in the series and is undoubtedly one of the best survival horror games ever. It's still 100% worth tracking down and playing today if you've never had the chance, and you can pick it up reasonably cheap on PSN.

Fans have said this for years, but with the upcoming remake of REmake, it seems like a shame that we only got an update of the original and not this one as well.

2. Castlevania: Symphony of the Night

This is another case where I'm going to struggle to think of new things to say. It's pretty much universally agreed upon that Symphony of the Night is not only the best in the Castlevania series, but also one of the must have PlayStation titles. Some PlayStation games are hard to return to, but that's certainly not the case here. I actually didn't play SOTN until 2005, nearly a decade after it was released, and to this day is an all-time favorite of mine.

Symphony is one of those games that I find myself purchasing over and over again. Between the original PlayStation version, PSN, XBLA, the PSP's Dracula X Chronicles, and then again on PSN because I lost my original account (and because I wanted to be able to play it on the Vita), I've bought the game a handful of times.

It takes the best of the 2D Castlevania games, says "screw you" to the N64 titles, and brings us a massive castle so full of secrets that I've played the game at least a dozen times over the years and continue to find things I never had before on each successive playthrough. The replay value on Symphony is on levels unlike most other games, and the fun hasn't diminished at all in the past 17 years.

1. Metal Gear Solid

I had already owned a PlayStation for several years when Metal Gear Solid was released, but MGS renewed my love of videogames after I hit a lull in my favorite hobby. My friend David procured a copy of the Japanese demo, which only featured the opening dock and subsequent heliport sections of the game, and even though we couldn't understand a word that was being said, that small taste was more than enough to sell us on the game.

Metal Gear Solid was the first game I ever pre-ordered, and I had done chores and begged my mother for months to give me the extra money I needed to get the game on release day. I snatched up every magazine I could find that had MGS coverage. I had to see every screenshot and take in every piece of information I could get my hands on.

I had never played the original Metal Gear on NES, and I certainly didn't play Metal Gear 2, so to my knowledge, this was the beginning of the series. You can imagine how confused I was when Master Miller called me the first time or any time Outer Heaven was mentioned. I thought maybe those were things covered in the manual, but no, I was just in the dark about everything.

Metal Gear Solid began my love of stealth-action games. To this day, any time stealth is an option, that's the path I go for. In Far Cry 4, getting noticed during my attempts to liberate outposts results in me letting myself die immediately so I can try again at finishing it perfectly. My wood elf in Skyrim spent a lot of time crouching and shooting arrows from the shadows. Metal Gear Solid started it all for me. Never before had I played a game where I felt like I was outsmarting the enemy.

That first night with the game, I remember getting to floor B2 of the nuclear warhead storage facility. I came to an area with poisonous gas and an electrified floor and having no clue what to do. I called David, who had purchased the strategy guide, and asked him what to do. After destroying the fuse box to the floor, I came to one of the most gruesome cutscenes I had ever seen (at least, as gruesome as you could be with PSone technology). After seeing the cyber ninja literally dismantle a few genome soldiers, I was totally freaked out, and knew that was where I had to call it a day. I wasn't mentally ready to fight someone that hardcore.

And that was just a prelude to the awesomeness that would come soon thereafter.

I worked my way through the snow covered fields, the sterile laboratories, I figured out how to escape Snake's holding cell, and I conquered Metal Gear Rex. I thought that was the end, but little did I know that the best was yet to come (

There wasn't a moment in the game that I didn't love. I still play it on occasion, and I much prefer it over the "upgrade" they called Twin Snakes. I don't have anything against Twin Snakes, it was a noble effort, I just think it's inferior. Why try to improve upon perfection?

There you have it, my top 5 PlayStation games. I know there's going to be a lot of different opinions on a console that revolutionized gaming as much as this one did, but there's no denying it's impact on the hobby we're all so passionate about.

I have a Twitter, oh, and a podcast that you should listen to.

Thanks for reading.

-Dustin









I apologize in advance to all the people who gave us questions that didn't get answered. We had a very short amount of time between when I put the call out for questions and when we recorded. So those questions will be answered on the next episode.

This week it's a two man team as Chris has a wife and child whose heads are exploding with vomit. So Luke and I bring an aimless podcast where Luke talks about his family getting into a fight at Wal Mart on Thanksgiving, and Dustin gives some Black Friday stories.

Games of the Week

Dustin - Secret of Mana

Luke - Dillon's Rolling Western

As always we cover the new releases this week like Secret Ponchos, The Crew, Captain Toad, and Luke describes GetClose: A game for RIVALS. News topics this week include Xbox hands down winning the Black Friday battle, the two-cannon Samus Amiibo selling for over two-grand, the ridiculous Samsung $120,000 television, and a very fiery discussion about how poorly Ubisoft has handled Assassin's Creed Unity.

All that and more in this episode of the Error Machine Podcast.

Follow us on Twitter: @TheDustinThomas @BygJuce @FakeChrisCramer

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Yo everybody. We're recording a new episode in a little bit. It's kind of a short notice, but if you have any questions for the podcast. Shoot them this way!

We don't really have a specific topic this week, and remember, they don't necessarily have to be videogame related.

Here's our latest episode: Episode 34 - A Tyler Perry Joint

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Look out for the new episode tomorrow!









The title of this Top 5 is pretty self explanatory. A lot of DToiders have been writing similar blogs, so I figured I would jump on the bandwagon. Here are the 5 games scheduled for release in 2015 that I'm most looking forward to.

Honorable Mention: Ori and the Blind Forest

The only reason this game missed the top 5 is because it's not going to be released on a console that I currently have, so it's not a guarantee I'll have a chance to play it in the year 2015. I love me some metroidvania games, and not only is this game absolutely gorgeous, but Moon Studios has stated there's a very heavy emphasis on platforming, which is the reason I loved Guacamelee! so much. Yes, the combat was great, but those platforming puzzle sections were what I loved most about it. Hopefully Ori does something similar.

5. Hyper Light Drifter

I got an opportunity to play Hyper Light Drifter at Pax East last year. It originally wasn't on my radar, but a buddy told me I should check it out if it were there. It was, and even though I sucked at the game, I still had an immense amount of fun. Any game that has a retro art style will grab my attention, then throw in the fact that it's an action-RPG inspired by SNES classics, and you've pretty much got me throwing my money at you.

When the game makes its way to the PlayStation 4 next year, it'll be a day one purchase for sure, and hopefully that'll also grant me the Vita version, because Hyper Light Drifter seems like a perfect handheld title.

4. Splatoon

Any time Nintendo comes out with a new IP (which doesn't happen very often these days) I immediately want to know more about it. If there's one thing that I know from the 26 years of my life I've spent playing videogames, it's that I can trust Nintendo. Even if it's not the big budget title that we all think of when we hear the term "triple-A", at the very least I know it'll be a solid game, it'll control well, and it'll work when I open it up...so pretty much the exact opposite of most triple-A games these days.

I actively avoid competitive multiplayer in most games, and I could see myself getting really into Splatoon's multiplayer when it comes out. I love the way the game looks, it's wacky and fully of vibrant colors you don't see very often. This is definitely a game most Wii U owners should perk their ears about.

3. Resident Evil Revelations 2

I think the original Revelations is the best Resident Evil game since RE4, so why wouldn't I be excited for this one? I'm not entirely sold on the episodic structure, but at least they're planning to release one episode a week until the game is completed, with a full version coming shortly thereafter. I'll likely opt for the full retail version rather than digital episodes, I prefer physical discs and I'm a pretty patient man.

It's also good to see Claire Redfield in her first new Resident Evil game in 15 years, as well as possibly getting an appearance from fan favorite, Barry Burton, as Claire's partner is Barry's daughter, Moira (Barry Burton is good at naming his guns, not his children). Revelations was a return to form for the Resident Evil series, and after the poop stain on the series that was Resident Evil 6, I'm hoping this sequel puts the series back on the right path, and from what I've seen thus far, it appears it will do just that.

2. Yoshi's Woolly World

Dawwwwwwwww. How can you look at that and not instantly be filled with happiness? The greatest sidekick in gaming gets the Epic Yarn treatment and it looks like the purest form of joy that videogames have ever seen. Granted, I'm a self-admitted Nintendo fanboy (see Splatoon above), but I think most Wii U owners would agree that this looks like a must-play game for the system.

I was never a huge fan of Yoshi's Island, and I'm yet to play the 3DS sequel, but based on trailers and screenshots it looks like it plays like a traditional Yoshi's Island minus the crying Baby Mario, which admittedly was the main reason I never got into Yoshi's Island in the first place. I prefer platformers over any other genre, and Yoshi's Woolly World was very close to taking the top spot, but...

1. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

...that goes to the next Big Boss adventure. I know we all went through the "Cost v Length" debate earlier this year with Phantom Pain's prologue, Ground Zeroes, but it did its job and left me thoroughly psyched for Phantom Pain. Everything they've shown so far fits right in with the Metal Gear universe, meaning it's not too crazy, but still pretty crazy. I mean, why wouldn't Big Boss have a wolf with an eye patch? Makes perfect sense in a world where giant walking tanks are a thing or where a dead man's hand can take control over another human being, and those are actually pretty tame compared to the rest of the game.

I'm very interested to see the open world that began in Ground Zeroes expanded upon. Metal Gear Solid games are legendary for giving you tons of different options during battle, but the one thing they've always been lacking is the ability to approach situations from different angles. And you know Kojima is going to give you tons of toys to play around with and Easter eggs to find. The series hooked me with Metal Gear Solid back in 1998, and with the exception of one title, I've found every game since then to be a masterpiece.

I don't usually pay the full $60 for games anymore, but I'll gladly shell out even more for a special edition version of Phantom Pain on day one.

Follow me on Twitter and listen to my podcast.

Thanks for reading,

-Dustin









In case you haven't heard, the Wii U version of Super Smash Bros. came out, and it's all Chris and Luke care to talk about. When Dustin is able to finally get them to talk about other things, they discuss topics and games like Infamous: Second Son, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, & Borderlands: The Pre Sequel.

We also tackle the new releases (maybe you've heard of a little game called Super Smash Bros?) As well as Luke telling us what the game Alphadia Genesis is about. Turns out it's a Tyler Perry game where Madea goes back into the time of Genesis.

We also talk about things like the high going price for a Smash Bros. Gamecube adapter, the double cannon Samus Amiibo, and in our discussion time this week, we recap WWE Survivor Series.

All this and some listener questions from the DToid community.

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Hey everybody, another Monday = another Error Machine Podcast recording.

Looking for questions for the podcast. They don't necessarily have to be videogame related, although we are a videogames podcast. But if you want to ask us about why I'm so handsome or why my co-host, Luke, is so unhandsome, you can ask that too!

Or just leave some thoughts or comments on some of our topics listed below:

In our game of the week section I'll be discussing Infamous: Second Son, as well as the CoD:AW campaign, and Luke and Chris will both be discussing Super Smash Bros.

Our news topics this week are:

Double Cannon Samus Amiibo

Smash Bros. GameCube Adapters Reach Crazy Prices

Activision Targeting CoD Glitch Videos on YouTube

All this and a bunch more! So ask us some things or leave your comments.