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About
Hi, I'm Chris, though I've been going by nekobun and variants thereof for so long, I kind of answer to both anymore.

While I've kind of got my own thing going in the realm of indie coverage, at least in the form of playing through (and streaming) (and writing about) the huge backlog I'm developing of games gleaned from various indie bundles, I try to keep my more mainstream, game-related features here, as well as opinion pieces on the industry at large, out of mad love for the 'toid. When I'm not rambling here or trying to be clever in comments threads, you can catch me rambling on Facebook and my Twitter, and trying to be clever in the Dtoid.tv chat.

Now Playing:
360: Halo 4
PC: F.E.A.R.
SNES: Secret Of Mana

Promoted:
I suck at games: PEW PEW LASERS
Improving game communities: Collective consciousness
Nothing is sacred: These walls have torn my world apart
The wrong thing: Only cream and bastards catch them all.
Love/Hate: I love to hate -you-
Love/Hate: B(u)y the book
The Future: Is still what it used to be
My Expertise: Playing the race kart
Something about sex: Sex sells, but who's buying?
E3 Approaches: It's oh so quiet
Freedom: Together, we'll break the chains of HUDs
East vs West: We've got the empire
Handhelds: Graduating as 2000's Catchemaledictorian
Relaxation: Cheesy double Chief burrito
Online Passes: A spoonful of sugar
Peripherals: Many tentacles pimpin' on the keys
This is what MAGfest is all about
Beginnings: Put it on the pizza
Disappointment: Bad(vent) timing

Recap Topsauce:
It's Thinking: Could you quit playing with that radio, love?
Do the wrong thing: And do it right, for once.
Afraid to shoot strangers.
Not if you were the last junkie on Pandora
Is Jim Sterling servicing the video games industry?
Something About Sex: Unsafe at any speed.
Doing DLC right
Congress passes sweeping Elfcare reform bill
Bottom five healthcare systems in videogames.
Pushing my love over the quarter line.
When my life would depend on an eight point none.
Remember the heroes.
Every Journey begins with a single step.
It's all over now, bomber blue.
Being Social: We'll always have Rainbow Road
Labor Day: Of course you realize, this means wark.
Please, aim it higher.
There Would've Been Brawl: Show me 'round your eggplantcage.
Integration: A place for everything
Zelda Week: I guess this is growing up.
MAGfest: the (don't be an) idiot's guide
Promotions: The bees are alright
Now is the winter of on-disc content
This was supposed to be a dozen items about nekobun.
Without Slenderness, there's something missing.
Cheap tricks (and treats) don't come cheaper than free.
The legacy of the (unlikely) wizard.
Cheap Tricks II: Sugar rush boogaloo
Thank you, for bringing me here, for showing me Home.
Burnt flowers fallen: the tragic bitchotry of Lilly Caul
Red and blue, resolving into purple.
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nekobun
2:35 AM on 05.03.2014

You had one of the first social/interactive/chill streaming channels that jumped from Justin.tv to Twitch.tv at its formation, and was a cornerstone to Twitch's early development aside from esports content.



You had one of the widest variety spreads of programming on a collaborative Twitch channel, until you scattered your hosts to the winds. You had a secondary channel to encourage and foster community involvement, something Dtoid was supposedly all about, until you threw it in the shitter.



You had one of the oldest heads in the streaming game at the helm of your channel after the trailblazing original hosts you didn't want around either left, until he went back to his own thing.



You had one of the most tantalizing looks into the development world for those outside of game-making, until you cancelled it, forcing them into a successful Kickstarter to continue the show without you.



You had a duo that weathered all of this and were the last bastion of quality content on your channel until you shit-canned them just before their last show like cowards.



Dtoid.tv may not have had the best view/follow ratio, but it still had a following. It had an audience. It had a history. And in a time where streaming is more prevalent than ever, with its inclusion on the new consoles and a growing number of PC games causing a boom in Twitch use and exposure, you're just throwing it all away.

(Skip to 1:37; apparently cblogs aren't equipped to handle start points on videos.)

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nekobun
2:05 AM on 03.01.2014



You heard that we were great
But now you think we're lame
Since you saw the show last night



You hoped that we would rock
And knock it up a notch
Rockin' was nowhere in sight



And it's never good when it goes bad
No one likes to feel like they've been had
And it may be okay
But you won't wear our t-shirts now 
Not anymore



First the band looked wired
Then the band looked tired
Sluggish and a little slow



He's walking through the set
As drunk as he could get
And what the hell was wrong with Joe?



And you could tell the crowd was fading fast
Every song we played looser than the last
And it may be okay
But you won't wear our t-shirts now



All the kids, they hold a grudge
Their minds are logged on to the net and
All the kids, they hold a grudge
You fail them and they won't forget it
All the kids are tired and turn away
They saw what you did
You're all wrong and all the kids are right



You heard that we were great
But now you know we're lame
Since you saw the show last night



You hoped that we would rock
And wished that we'd just stop
And finally we said goodnight



When we had returned for the encore
You and half the room had headed for the door
No one wanted more



All the kids, they hold a grudge
Their minds are logged on to the net and
All the kids, they hold a grudge
You fail them and they won't forget it
All the kids, they're tired and turn away



All the kids they hold a grudge
Their minds are logged on to the net and
All the kids they hold a grudge
You fail them and they won't forget it



All your cred won't save you from the kids
They saw what you did
You're all wrong and all the kids are right



(Click the tombstones for highlights. It was good while it lasted.)

PS:
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Some of you may recall my foray from last month into the realm of free, horror-themed downloadable games. If not, you can read it here. I've been working my way through some more, and here's what I think of the latest batch I've played.



I mentioned The Theater at the tail end of my previous article, as I had played the worse of two versions of the game. Now that I've played both, I can confidently say I'm only slightly less disappointed. Based on a piece of creepypasta by the same name, The Theater is supposed to be a forgotten title from 1993, even though at least one of the two versions floating around was clever enough to model the posters in the lobby after those for films released in the past three or four years. Basically just a repeating loop that will, at some point between trip 2 and trip 400, start getting weird, this is such a waste of time that I'm not going to bother linking either take on it. A quick scrounge of YouTube will cough up several playthroughs should you truly be interested, many of which have links to the games so you can check them out yourself.



The Briefcase follows in the footsteps of other Slender-esques, in that it involves collecting items in an unfamiliar place, with something roaming the area that doesn't want you collecting them. In this case*, however, there's only one item to collect (the titular briefcase), and it's more about the escape than the acquisition. This game is, much like the satchel you're after, very brief, but it changes up the "find crap and run" formula enough to be worth investigation. Those prone to poking around areas to make sure they haven't missed anything may find their first playthrough being The Run, as the game's solution lies in the environment, but it's nice to see some variety of thought when it comes to this influx of first-person horror indies.



Flash game Cellar Door plays like a fairly traditional point-and-click adventure, set in a dilapidated building riddled with jump scares. Your objective is to collect several marbles before meeting a hidden time limit, at which point you will, appropriately, lose your mind. While not the greatest scare-fest, Cellar Door proves frustratingly clever when it comes to hiding the marbles you seek, and that, if nothing else, will keep you coming back to try and clear the game. Its creators, Progressive Games teased a follow-up after the game's ending, entitled Cellar Door Purgatory, but have run into some delays finishing it. Rest assured that I'll be giving Purgatory a shot as well, once it's ready.



Inside is less of a game than an interactive experience, and while it suffers from some rather low-grade in-game modeling, playing Inside offers some surprisingly decent jolts. Trapped in some sort of mansion or castle, your quest is to find your way out, a task that becomes more and more pressing as you bear witness to atrocities that seem to have occurred around you, and encounter some peculiar goings-on yourself. It's not amazing, but I give this game kudos for spooking even my ridiculously jaded self once or twice, so I'm going to say you should give it a try.



My most recent play on this list, Magnesium Ninja's Ascension, ditches the first-person trend to join games such as Lone Survivor and Home in the realm of 2-D, sidescrolling horror. As Atticus, a maintenance man for a mysterious, partially subterranean facility, you're forced to search for your daughter and your friend who was watching her after the power cuts out and things start going terribly wrong. With a well-detailed pixel art style intercut with hand-drawn story sequences, Ascension is a throwback to more classic survival horror, where powerlessness was the name of the game and combat was a last-ditch option. Even your flashlight use is something to worry about, and not solely due to battery consumption. It's not a very long play, given I managed to finish in one two hour session despite having quite a bit of trouble finding some items mid-game; that's my only complaint about Ascension, really, in that some of the key items you need to proceed are barely visible against the environment and are in no way highlighted, so a fair amount of mouse wiggling may be required to complete things.

While I'm here, it's worth mentioning that both Ascension and Imscared (which was featured in the first article) are highlighted in The Free Bundle, a new bundle (of sorts) that's trying to highlight free titles that people may've overlooked. All the games are downloadable individually, right from the main page, and there are also links to the games' homepages should you feel like donating a bit to their creators.

Also on the topic of horror, the crew behind Slender Man's Shadow, Dark Pathogen, have finally gotten around to releasing the "secret project" they announced in the middle of last year. All of the Slender Man's Shadow stages have been re-created using the Unity engine and gathered into a single executable, thereby bringing the entire, Eight Pages inspired collection to Mac and Linux users, where the original levels were PC-only. In addition, the new version adds a couple of extra levels: the long-teased Carnival stage, and a festive, albeit belated, Christmas Special level.

The bad news, if there is any to be had, is that this package is not free, but it'll only run you $6.99 for the combo platter. It's on Steam Green Light as well, so if you've already enjoyed some of the earlier levels (which are still free to download for PC at their homepage) or want to snag the free demo (which features Sanatorium, the original SMS stage, and the Christmas Special) and like that, feel free to give it some upvotes. If you'd like a bit more information on these Slender spin-offs, I already covered them in this article and this other article a couple of months ago.

Well, that's all I have for this round, but rest assured, there are more cheap scares to come. After all, I play (supposedly) spooky things every night on my Twitch.tv channel, though the series may be making a move elsewhere in the near future... Keep an eye out for an announcement to that effect, as well as on this cblog for more frugal frights.



* - That "case" pun was absolutely unintentional, but you best believe I left it in there on purpose once I noticed it.
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You've seen the daily posts for Mash Tactics. You've seen the weekend schedule each week for the heaps of shows we have on Dtoid.tv over the weekend. You've caught Jonathan Holmes' 'Sup Holmes Interviews, or explored the Dafoeverse vicariously with Conrad, Katrina, and Jordan, or been thoroughly confused as Johnny Luchador breaks games and your mind on Totally Rad Show. But have you heard about Streamtoid?



Streamtoid is Destructoid's community-focused sister stream channel on Twitch.tv, with a looser broadcasting schedule and an aim to bring Destructoid users into the fold, introducing them to streaming and giving them a place to flex their broadcasting wings. Given the somewhat scattershot nature of their programming, though it is getting a bit more regular and focused as of late, it's hard to pin down a precise schedule, but several broadcasters have regular shows there throughout the week, and our very own Team Fortress 2sdays are broadcast live on Streamtoid each week. More often than not, Streamtoid content fills the gaps between shows on Dtoid.tv proper, offering a near-seamless feed of video content over the course of the week.

Following Streamtoid on Twitch as well as Dtoid.tv is one great way to keep tabs on who's on and when, but regular viewer and friend of the streams Noxious has also created a handy extension for users of Google Chrome that lists who's on whenever Destructoid or Streamtoid are live, as well as keeping track of the personal channels of broadcasters from both, should you want to support them individually and independently of their Destructoid content. It's a great way to have gaming content at your fingertips at pretty much all times.

The other side of the community focus of Streamtoid, as I mentioned, is the desire to bring some of you, the proud, the Dtoidians into our streaming fold. But how does one go about getting into streaming video games? Here's a primer on some of the basics you'll need to get started, be it on your own channel or with a pitch for Streamtoid.

Obviously, at the core of things, you're going to need a computer. Streaming content tends to be relatively demanding on a processor, so your system's going to have to be relatively current to be able to handle the load inherent in broadcasting super pretty, HD-quality content. However, you can still get by at lower resolutions; only a small handful of Dtoid broadcasters actually produce shows at 720p, and back in the days of Jon Carnage and Pico Mause, Mash Tactics topped out at a whopping 432p and was still a great time. Other recommended hardware would be a microphone, and possibly a webcam, as interaction with stream chat tends to be the primary focus at Dtoid.tv and Streamtoid. It's also what keeps viewers coming back, as being acknowledged in chat makes you feel like part of the experience, and can lead to some great discussion and/or interesting antics on your show.

Secondly, you're going to need some software. There are several alternatives out there, but there are four primary options you'll run into: OBS, Xsplit, FME, and Wirecast.

OBS, or Open Broadcaster Software, is rapidly growing in popularity, as it demands less processor power than some of its brethren while still retaining much of the functionality of what's arguably the biggest fish in the streaming software sea, Xsplit. It doesn't hurt that it's free to download, either. OBS may take a bit of getting used to in regards to its interface, however, and requires some extra steps to set up as it relies on your stream key rather than just your Twitch.tv login. Additionally, it's not particularly well suited to capturing from hardware devices, which makes OBS best suited to PC streaming for the time being, and less so for console streaming (which we'll get further into later).

Xsplit, on the other hand, exchanges a bit more user friendliness and intuitiveness for processor load, but is one of the most widely-used programs by streamers today. Easy to set up, configurable for up to twelve, pre-set layouts at a time, and fairly flexible in regards to settings tweaks and input sources, Xsplit can be a powerful tool once you get into it. Unfortunately, access to many of Xsplit's features also requires you to pay for a license, which may not be in everyone's budget, especially not a streamer just starting out. Licensing options have, thankfully, seen a recent increase in choices, with a three month package now available for the fairly reasonable price of $14.95, so it's not too terrible on the wallet to see if the full access to Xsplit is right for you.

Adobe's Flash Media Live Encoder, formerly and still somewhat popularly known as just Flash Media Encoder, was the go-to, free choice for many starting streamers prior to Xsplit's beta period, and is decent for a free piece of software. It can be a bit clumsy at times and isn't the best out there, but is a decent choice for those looking for a fairly easy, quick way to get set up and give streaming a try. To be fair, though, OBS has pretty much eclipsed FMLE in popularity and usefulness, and nowadays, you're more likely to find people willing and able to help you get started with the former rather than the latter.

And finally, there's Wirecast, the big daddy of streaming software. Geared toward professional production, Wirecast encompasses several encoding formats, all sorts of hardware and input options, and gives you access to production tools on the fly. However, all this power comes at a price, with the base version ringing in at $495.00, and the full, Pro edition tacking another $500 onto that. If you're made of money, feel free to check out the free trial offered on their site to see if Wirecast is for you, but consider yourself warned.

Now that you've got streaming software, how to you put your face and your games on the interbutts? Well, signing up for an account at Twitch.tv would be a good first step, though if you're already watching enough streamed content to be interested in streaming, you've probably done so already. From there, it's just a matter of capturing content and slapping your webcam over or next to it with whatever software you're using, for which there are plenty of tutorials, some of which are provided by the software outlets themselves. Alternatively, you can search for "how to set up <streaming software here>" and find a wealth of tutorials covering everything you may need to know. It doesn't hurt to try a few test streams before going "officially" live with your channel, to work out any technological kinks and make sure everything looks and sounds to your liking.

When it comes to streaming PC games, streaming software is pretty accomodating. Many games are supported by in-program "game source" capturing, which pulls the video straight from the game to your stream. Failing that, you can just set a screen region encompassing the area covered by the game's window, or your desktop if you're playing full-screen. Please note that it's a bit easier on your hardware to play games in windowed mode, and you may have to tweak the game's video settings down a bit for optimal performance with streaming software running. Playing in windowed mode also makes it easier to manage your streaming window and anything else you may be juggling while live, especially if you're limited to one monitor's worth of space. A dual monitor setup is probably optimal, as the secondary monitor can provide a convenient home for your stream window, as well as for a window bearing the stream chat, making interaction that much easier. If you have a laptop or tablet, that will make chat interaction even easier, as you can keep your Twitch.tv dashboard open on that for interaction purposes, leaving your main computer responsible for streaming alone.

As for the issue of console games, things get a bit trickier. To capture video from a console, you're going to need some extra hardware, either external or internal. The lowest tier of capture equipment comes in the form of USB dongles, which are often limited to standard definition input. These are a great way to get started at a reasonable price point, especially if you're aiming to broadcast gameplay from retro consoles, but are often not the greatest to keep using after some time, and, in an age of high definition televisions and consoles, are rapidly falling by the wayside. The most popular options after that come in the form of HD PVRs and capture cards.

PVRs are, by nature, external devices, and as their name would imply, capture cards are installed inside your streaming computer of choice. There's a fair amount of debate as to what the best option is, but I've seen comparable results from both camps, and it's best to just find something that meets a reasonable price point for you. Personally, I do my own streaming on a Hauppauge HD PVR, Gaming edition, and it hasn't done me wrong, for the most part. BlackMagic Intensity is another name that gets thrown around quite a bit, on the card front, but again, I'd recommend doing your own research as to what fits your hardware and your needs. Both sources can either be pulled from directly by streaming software (save for with OBS, which seems to have trouble with that at this point) or may rely on capture software, which comes included in with the Hauppauge, which can subsequently be screen-regioned, and is adjustable for varying levels of capture quality.

And that's pretty much it. There are plenty of other things to read up on, such as tailoring your broadcast to your internet capabilities, optimizing your settings, and introducing additional hardware like audio mixers and multiple cameras, but YouTube, Twitch's support forums, and a few web searches all make it fairly easy to find the information you need. My one suggestion on that front is to check the posting date of any given tutorial, as the streaming scene has evolved very quickly over the past several years, and information as fresh as a year old may very well be outdated by now. If needs be, feel free to ask questions over on the Dtoid.tv Facebook group, as most of our broadcasters frequent there and are more than willing to help expand the fold.



Now that you've gotten started, played on your own channel a bit, and feel like you've something to contribute to Streamtoid, how do you go about that? Easily enough. Destructoid's own Spencer Hayes is in charge of the Streamtoid channel, and while I'm not in any position to disseminate his email address, I can at least point you to his profile, from which you can message him with your ideas, inquiries, and whatnot about getting on the schedule. It may not hurt to hang around Streamtoid for a bit and get a feel for what's already going on there, so you can bring something new and unique to the party, but at the same time, don't feel like you need to compromise your personality or your play preferences just to fill a gap. If nothing else, successful streaming relies a great deal on staying true to oneself and playing games one genuinely enjoys, so you have more to talk about while you play and can keep viewers engaged.

Really, whether you're streaming for yourself or, eventually, for Streamtoid, that's the key thing. Much as with any of the other community-oriented outlets here at Destructoid, be yourself, or at least, be your own gimmick. Playing big-draw games like League Of Legends, competitive first-person shooters, or struggling to keep up with the latest and greatest titles may bring in the viewers initially, but if you're not enjoying them, not getting into them, or just doing it for the numbers, it's going to show, and those viewers are going to turn right around without following, and won't come back. Play games you love, be they new or dated, and share that love with your audience, and that audience will hit that Follow button and keep coming back for more. Even if you're not on Streamtoid, but enjoy our programming, feel free to spread the word to your own viewers and send them to raid either 'toid channel when you're done for the day; chances are, the favor'll be repaid in kind, with a deluge of fresh faces checking you out thanks to a Dtoid raid one day, as the cycle of raiding is essentially the Twitch version of karma. Don't be afraid to ask for help, be it on the tech side or for moderation's sake, should you start bringing in more people than you can handle solo, as many of our broadcasters and mods have that little lightning bolt icon on other channels, and will be glad to give you a hand once you've wormed your way into our peculiar, incestuous little family.



Hope to see some of you Twitch-side soon, be it on the broadcasting end or just as new viewers, and with luck, this'll prove a decent starting point for those looking to expand into the Twitch and Dtoid community.
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Back when it debuted in May of 2010, the first Humble Bundle presented something new and interesting, especially to those gamers out there on a budget. Serving up a fistful of indie games that were already receiving varying levels of buzz, potential customers were given the option to pay what they wanted for the bundle, and further customize their contribution by setting how much of their payment was to go to each game's developer, and how much would go to charity. Despite being mostly unprecedented (outside of the Steam-sale bundles that inspired it), news of the deal that was the Humble Bundle spread via social networking and discussion websites, and the bundle broke $1 million in sales before its end.

Since that first outing, the bundle scene has exploded. With the Humble Bundle itself now twenty-one bundles deep, with exploration into non-game realms such as music and books, and other discount game compilations cropping up all over the place, it seems as if the bundle model should be providing indie developers with a new way to get their games into players' hands and build support for potential future titles, as well as combating piracy to some extent and renewing faith in the generosity of gamers in general. To some extent, this has been the case, but certain trends seem to be developing that may or may not be warning signs regarding the state of the bundle scene.



One of the most recent examples, having occurred as November slid into December of 2012, was Humble's THQ Bundle. Sure, the Humble guys were known for doing developer-centric bundles before, offering batches of games from Frozenbyte, Lexaloffe, and other developers, as well as teaming up with outfits such as Mojang and Double Fine to provide games from their Mojam and Amnesia Fortnight jams, respectively, but this was the first time a Humble Bundle had been tied to a big-name, albeit flailing, publisher. Sure, it beat $5 million in sales and got some great games into the hands of players who may not have been able to grab them previously, but, as recent news has shown, it certainly didn't save THQ's bacon, and it was a departure from a history of helping out self-publishers who probably needed the money more to eat than to keep a sinking ship afloat. It may not signal the end of an era, but it's a bit worrisome to think the Humble Bundle may be able to squeak by on their history and name after the stink raised when EA compiled their own "indie" bundle on Steam back at the beginning of the year.



A more widespread, but less noticable issue in the bundle scene, is the dubious quality of some of the offerings out there, with old, dust-collecting titles being thrown together more in the interest of garnering a quick buck off ill-informed bargain hunters than in helping out any developers who could use a hand. While having started out well enough, with relatively current titles such as Hacker Evolution, inMomentum, and Your Doodles Are Bugged in its very first outing, Indie Gala is arguably the most prominent of the bundle sites experiencing this sort of drift. As they've worked their way through fourteen bundles to date, the initial three to four year timespan for release dates in Indie Gala contents has expanded to include more and more games that are half a decade or more out of date, the most egregious example having been the original Worms, featured in Indie Gala 9 despite having come out in 1995. To be fair, Worms still holds up, but it and the other dated Worms titles in IG9 seem like filler, if anything, as well as being guilty to some extent of Humble's THQ maneuver, as Team17 and the Worms franchise appear to be doing well enough without any bundle's aid. Sure, this lack of temporal focus has uncovered some delightful gems, with the same Indie Gala 9 also offered the first three Broken Sword games, but there are just as many titles from this and other bundles that may have well stayed forgotten.

Even when more current games are being featured, there often leaves something to be desired in terms of quality control of the games that do make it in. While I hate to harsh on anything into which a team has put a decent amount of time and effort, more and more bundle offerings seem like barrel-scrapings that the bundle builders were able to get their hands on more easily. Again, Indie Gala gets a nod, as there's been increasingly more mediocrity in the past few offerings, though that could, again, be in part due to the increasing ages of the games they choose to bundle. Other bundles, however, are not as innocent. Both magic pony raising simulator and snooze-fest Secret Of The Magic Crystals and general disaster Revelations 2012 have been on offer in different batches provided by the bundle site Groupees in recent months. While the former was in a Build-A-Bundle, which allows buyers to pick and choose which games they want, Revelations 2012 was the headliner in the Be Mine 4 bundle, which featured generally respected games like Guns Of Icarus, Dwarfs!?, and Metal Drift. One could argue it's a great, low-cost way to witness a trainwreck one wouldn't have otherwise paid to partake in, but it still raises concern when rubbish seems to be interloping its way into things.



The worst offender thus far, on both counts of garbage and aged goods, along with a side of shady practices, would have to be Indie Face Kick. Their most recent bundle offered up several steaming piles, including 2006's on-rails get-shot-fest, Desert Gunner; the same year's clumsy, half-baked post-apocalyptic mess, Hard Truck: Apocalypse; and my personal favorite, Operation Matriarchy, a generic first-person shooter from 2005 that shipped with corrupted audio files that were never fixed, outside of fan-made mods that may not even work properly for some. Recently, the crew at Indie Face Kick have been in a legal tangle with Biart, the developers of mediocre-but-playable Depth Hunter and the widely panned Deep Black, over the inclusion of the latter as a bonus in their second bundle, though Biart have been firing back over Indie Face Kick's lack of payment for sales of Depth Hunter in that same bundle. Hopefully, it's an isolated incident, but it shows that some bundlers may be cropping up to help themselves more than anyone else.

So, what bundles are worth it? Well, despite being somewhat questionable with the THQ Bundle, and their standard policy of offering a single Steam code for an entire bundle rather than codes for each game (which would allow those buyers who already have some of the bundled games to pass the extras along), The Humble Bundle have proven themselves time and again to be trustworthy, and have the clout necessary to gather some of the finest indie games out there. Hot on their heels are Indie Royale, who crank out bundles on a regular basis, tie your purchase history to some extra bonus rewards, and centralize your bundles on one page tied to your account, should you ever need to re-download anything. Additionally, Indie Royale is partnered with Desura, so your new purchases will appear immediately on your Desura account, whether or not you choose to redeem the Steam codes, which is fairly convenient. And, despite a couple of slips in the quality control department, Groupees is a great site for bundles of all kinds, be they bundles of games, music, or even e-books and digital comics. Their game bundles, branded under the Be Mine name, tend to offer some fairly interesting selections and piles of bonus material, and their Build-A-Bundles, as mentioned earlier, give you the freedom to pick which offerings you want, and provides base and suggested prices once you've made your selections. For those curious about the many titles being thrown up for voting on Steam Green Light, The Green Light Bundle compiles several candidates now and then in low-priced bundles for your perusal to try and get some votes going, and offers Steam codes for those games that make the cut once they're officially on Steam. Finally, while their bundles are fewer and far-er between-er, Bundle In A Box is one of the more recent entries to the bundle realm, and consistently offer a great selection of mostly-unknown titles, usually centered around some sort of theme.



Also worth keeping an eye on are the markets that seem to be spinning off the bundle system as we know it. A few months ago, Indie Gala launched their Gala Store, which offers deals on a wide variety of games, both from previous bundles and stand-alone, which usually come at a discount and can see further price lowering using the Gala Points earned from buying Indie Gala bundles. Additionally, they have mini-bundle deals going on pretty much constantly, usually featuring two or three games at a super-low price for as many days. Another site offering similar, small-bundle deals is Indiebundle.org, which evolved from the short-lived Indie Underdog Pack and offers three-game bundles of mostly unknown games for five dollars a pop. Given the quality of the obscure goods they served up in the IUP bundles, I'd say they're worth investigating. Thirdly, Indie Game Stand has taken the pay-what-you-want model of bundles and applied it to individual games, doling out a new game for whatever you can pay every four days, but offering bonus content to anyone who beats the suggested price, which is usually ten dollars.

In a world where Steam sales seem to dominate gamers' wallets, and grow to be a more and more regular occasion each year, it's nice to see an alternative in these bundles giving non-Steam titles a push and a chance at expanding their audiences. Even with some bumps in the road and the possible beginnings of drift from their original, altruistic intent, the bundle ecosystem is still a healthy and growing alternative to established means of distribution, and we can only hope it continues to thrive. If anything, with increased popularity and further patronage will come greater scrutiny, helping to quell less honest bundles and keep the good ones thriving.
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Decided to hop in on this name game thing, and punching my moniker into Urban Dictionary yielded some, um, interesting results. By "interesting," I mean something along the lines of "probably written by foreveralone cryhards who feel like they're forever trapped in the friend zone." Which means I may have gotten drunk and written one of these entries myself in darker times, but whatever. There are some cute ones, though I made it a point to hunt for the weird.

Going by my full first name, you get some beastly, long-winded nonsense right off the bat. Oddly appropriate, given my specialization here in tl;dr material.

1. Christopher 196 up, 32 down
The most amazing guy out there. Very deep and talented, Christophers make for the best conversationalists. Although sometimes they can be very mean without realizing it, they don't mean it. They don't have the best sense of humor, but some people (specifically the crazy type) can understand the jokes. They're not very emotional, and they won't change that about themselves. They worry about others much more than themselves, and hate knowing that they hurt someone else. They are very calm and laid back, and if you make them mad they cool off by the next day.

Hey, you know Christopher?
yeah, what about him?
I'm gonna marry him someday (:

2. Christopher 4579 up, 1250 down
Maybe when you first meet a Christopher they'll seem like a jerk, and hurt you emotionally multiple times, or possible make the lamest jokes but one day he'll make up for it all, the best he can. Christophers will eventually realize the love that they've stored in a safe place for you. Christophers usually have the most gorgeous smile out there, and the most seductive voice. They're someone you wouldn't mind spending the rest of your entire life with. They have a tendancy to spend more time thinking of what to do for someone else than themselves. Christophers love adventure, new things, something to get their blood rushing and heart pounding.

I love my Christopher, forever and always.
That soldier, he keeps me sane.
(=

Take a deeper look at your Christopher before you let go, he might be the best thing that will ever happen to you.

3. Christopher 293 up, 82 down

1. Perhaps at first glance one might think a Christopher is a misfit, but this is merely his camouflage. Christophers are honest men whom go hard; work hard, play hard, and love hard. To most, Christophers seem wild, untamable forces of nature whom are destructive… but don’t mistake these terms “wild”, “untamable”, and “force of nature” as negative attributes, for it is part of a Christopher’s splendor. You call him wild because he goes all out; I call him passionate, adventurous, energetic, and determined. You call him untamable because you want to control him, I say let him be free-spirited because he will achieve great things and he is most beautiful when not cadged. And as for force of nature, he is a force to be reckoned with for sure, but he is not destructive, he is protective and strong (in every sense of the word). A Christopher may be able to lift heavy objects, bend blue steel, or take on sebn’ black panthers, but with those same hands he can hold a child’s hand without crushing it, caress a woman gently, and make people feel safe. Christophers are known charmers who will make you smile and laugh anytime given time. Upon hearing a Christopher’s deep, calming and seductive voice, one can’t help but smile and feel at ease. Do not underestimate a Christopher, for he is a man in the purest sense; honest, steadfast, and knows how to provide.

2. A grown ass man.

He's a real Christopher, he had me smiling for days.

4. Christopher 350 up, 139 down
Christopher name meaning bearer of christ. Christophers are usually handsome, caring, generous, and funny guys. They are very loving and compassionate. They will sit there and hold you till the sun comes up. They will make you soup when your sick and stand by your side when your going through a tough time. They aren't afraid to beat anyone up that hurts a loved one or friend. They are very marture. They love fast cars and motorcycles. They hate taking many pictures and hate to smile. They aren't looking just to have a fling, they want to fall in love. They make many girls fall in love with them, just by the thoughtful words they say. They aren't really into Valentines Day, only because they show their love for someone all year long. They love to be adventerous and daring. They can help anyone in any situation and give some of the best advice. They also make good looking babies. They are just the best type of guys to fall in love with.

I just got some of the best advice ever.
You must of got it from a CHRISTOPHER.


Get to page two, however, and things start getting weird:

10. Christopher 44 up, 15 down

The latin being Christos-Philo. Christos=annointed and Philo= lover of. Lover of the annointed or Annointed lover. Either way Christophers deep down strive to live up to the moniker. Usually going by Chris when young and reclaiming the whole name with maturity to honor their mothers who chose the full regal version at birth. A bolt of lightning combined with the cool of the ocean breeze. Christophers can knock your socks off in the bedroom and out party the most die hard of ragers be it bong or booze. His lampshade gets bigger the longer the party goes yet can hold his own going fist to fist. A lover's lover and a fighter's fighter. Weaknesses include vagina, marijuana and a cold beer. If he has a thousand dollars on a Friday morning it will become $2.78 by Monday night.

That Christopher guy from the bonfire last night had the dankest herb and he left in that van full of girls to go to a private afterhours.



Cutting things down to Chris, things don't waste any time moving toward the ridiculous:

1. Chris 499 up, 63 down
You don't get on a Chris' bad side.
You don't fuck with a Chris
You don't even attempt to show a Chris up.
Always remember a Chris can see through lies and your bullshit.
A Chris never starts a fight but always finishes them making sure to talk shit and kick ass.
A strait up bad-ass.
A Chris is the guy to find when you
1: Need someones mouth shut for good.
2: You have any problem social, academic, mental, or moral.
A Chris can take a bullet to the chest and laugh it off.
A Chris has an answer to every problem.
A Chris is a doctor with out a degree he can mend a wound using only the clothes on his back.
A Chris rocks a 5.0/4.0 GPA because of his AP classes.
A Chris knows everyone.
A Chris can talk his way out of a detention to an expulsion.
A Chris drives any car smoothly and swiftly giving any racer a run for their money.
A Chris is a natural born sex god with a huge cock and the ability to satisfy any girl.
A Chris has hawk eyes as blue as a lagoon that can see at a 180 degree angle.
A Chris has chill brown hair that shines even in the dark.
A Chris is cut up with muscles.
A Chris smells seductive and mysterious.
A Chris never gets boring.
A Chris can master any expertise.
A Chris' teeth makes snow look yellow.
When a Chris has a girlfriend he makes everyone jealous.
A Chris can figure out how to fly a jet using only cool, calm, and collected personality.

Have Chris talk to him.

(By the way, these tags on that first one are the best: cock, skill, bad-ass, eyes, cut up, muscle, kick-ass, huge cock, sex god, driver, drifter, fight god)

2. Chris 150 up, 32 down
A charming, honest, romantic, interesting, sensitive, determined, upright, princely, eloquent, and attractive person.

A Chris may strike you as a little weird or different at first, but that is because you won't know their true self until you work on getting to know them. As you find out more about them, they will continue to grow on you until you want to spend every minute with them.

A Chris may not be super buff, but makes up for it in strength and brains. They are very helpful and go out of their way to make other people happy. They also love to compliment girls and will do anything for their special someone, having a hidden romantic side. They are outdoor oriented people and have a strong faith in their religion. Chris's sometimes may become sad or depressed, but a friendly word or hug will cheer them up. They love their family, but may feel the need to break away and strike out on their own as they grow older.

To know a Chris is to know an amazing person who will impact your life deeply. Make sure to treat them with all the respect you can, because they deserve it!

"Wow, who was that cute boy you were talking to?"
"Oh, that was Chris. Isn't he amazing?"

"Have I ever told you that you are the most amazingly beautiful, stunningly graceful, and lovingly tender friend ever?"
"Aww Chris your flattering me again!"


This one, however, is easily my favorite:

3. Chris 623 up, 207 down
probably your name, and youre looking it up in Urban Dictionary to see what your name is defined as...this is it


Moving along, things returned to normal, sort of:.

6. Chris 1034 up, 422 down
A guy who can always make you laugh, even at the worst of times. He's an extremely sexy person, even though he denies it. He is also smart, and denies that too. Someone named Chris is always up for having a good time and will always leave you breathless. You'll never be bored with a Chris around.

Wow. He is so much fun to hang out with! He must be a Chris!

7. Chris 745 up, 298 down
Person who knows everything about everything. Omnipotent being.

Me: I took my car to the shop
Chris: I knew that
Me: I have a leak in my gas tank
Chris: I knew you would
Me: I hate you
Chris: I know you do

9. chris 11089 up, 5124 down
is a slang for huge cock

like incredibly huge.

oh man I wish I had a chris in me.


So, summing up, it would appear I'm an incredibly huge, cut up, grown-ass, breezy, ocean lightning bolt cock that knows everything about everything, is familiar with everyone, and moonlights as a natural born sex god.

Judging by that last bit, maybe I am the white Hamza, after all.
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