Nicole, Linda, and Simone are joined by game-industry veteran Mike Mika, AKA “Donkey Kong Dad,” head of development at Other Ocean Interactive, creator of the game #IDARB, and the dad of a son, 8, and a daughter, 6. As usual we run down the gaming news and jabber for a while about what we played this week. Thanks, listeners, we love you! (Please send in questions!)
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- Media Molecule has announced a new game, called Dreams, that sounds like it’s going to be super cool in every way.
- Quantic Dream, the developers of award-winning game Heavy Rain, have announced a new game that looks really amazing, called Detroit.
- Nintendo has announced a new mobile app and some other earth-shattering stuff.
- Xbox has a huge update coming out November 12, featuring a new dashboard and backwards compatibility with Xbox 360 games.
- The “New York Times” is sending Google Cardboard virtual-reality headsets to their subscribers. With the NYT VR app, you can watch the short VR film “The Displaced,” about child refugees. Courtney made a great video about how to make your own VR headset that you can use with the Google Cardboard VR app, which is also being used in education.
- Sony is no longer making new games for the Vita. Simone & Mike are not happy.
Mike Mika: “Donkey Kong Dad” & Head of Development at Other Ocean Interactive
Mike Mika is famous for hacking Donkey Kong so his young daughter could play as a female character. He tells us the whole sweet and inspiring story. He also tells the amazing story of how he jump-started his game-development career as a kid—by making games in two-hour chunks in K-Mart while his parents shopped. (Mike wrote about his early experiences in learning to program for Pixelkin here.) Then we learn about the game room in his basement, which is a small museum of video game history. Mike made a game called The Stacks with his friend Ernie Cline, who wrote one of our very favorite books EVER, “Ready Player One.”
Mike talks about resources for learning coding. (And mentions our friend Mark DeLoura’s efforts in that direction; Mark was on an earlier podcast with us.) Mike’s son loves Minecraft and AirCoaster, a roller-coaster simulation app on the iPad that teaches physics. His kids have played Animal Crossing and Disney Infinity 3.0, as well.
His current game is #IDARB, an innovative crowd-sourced game that’s available on the Xbox. Coming soon is a mysterious project. Mike says “imagine #IDARB times 10.”
What We Played
- Simone played Assassin’s Creed Syndicate (of course). Her review is coming up on our sister site, remeshed.com.
- Mike played the Star Wars Battlefront beta and he’s looking forward to Halo 5 and Fallout 4. But he wants to play Rise of the Tomb Raider, too.
- Nicole played some Halo 5 (her husband works for 343 Industries, the developer of Halo) Alphabear , Hearthstone, and Star Stable, which she reviewed for Pixelkin.
- Linda played a little Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, some Disney Fantasia: Music Evolved, and The Land of Venn – Geometric Defense.
This podcast was recorded in the studios of the Jack Straw Cultural Center in Seattle. The music is by Pat Goodwin at Novelty Shop Creative. Nicole Tanner, Linda Breneman, Simone de Rochefort, and Mike Mika participated in this podcast. Thanks for listening and if you liked this episode, please rate us on iTunes and find us on BlogTalkRadio!