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Nerds Without Pants   

Nerds Without Pants Episode 157: Tech Jacket

Fighting a future time!

Welcome back to Nerds Without Pants! Julian and Justin look to the future in this episode, as we list our favorite bits of tech in video games. Also, Okami takes on Shadow of the Colossus in the steel cage. Join us, will you?

00:00-04:57 Intro

05:21-1:26:57 STAGE SELECT: Top 3 Pieces of Tech in  Video Games

1:28:08-2:21:08 CONSUMPTION JUNCTION: ReCore, Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night, Blazing Chrome, Samurai Shodown (2019), Black Desert Online (?!), Final Fantasy VII, Life is Strange 2 episode 3, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

2:21:44-2:40:37 VIDEO GAME CAGE MATCH: Shadow of the Colossus vs Okami


STAGE SELECT: What are your favorite video game conspiracy theories?

VIDEO GAME CAGE MATCH: Halo 2 vs Half Life 2: The battle of the faceless vs the voiceless!




Selections from The Carpenters: Yesterday Once More, Superstar, Rainy Days and Mondays, (They Long to Be) Close to You, I Won’t Last Day Without You



Exrian Contributing Writer

07/31/2019 at 05:25 PM

Great episode guys. Damnit Julian, you had to mention the reasoning behind the music and it killed me whenever you had musical transitions. Then the absolute ending. Luckily I dont wear pants because they'd be soggy with tears. Sorry about your mom Julian. I wasnt a listener when it all happened but I have heard you mention it a few times through the years and I cant imagine how hard that all was. I'm glad to see you've gotten the strength together to get back to some semblance of regular life. 

With that said, I'm really on board for this Stage Select. Conspiracies are my thing and I've got a few that I think about. I put 4 because I thought of one of my favorites from Mass effect. 


Stage Select: Conspiracies

4. Getting to Chrono Triggers Map in Chrono Cross: Anyone who is familiar with Chrono Cross may recall a waterfall on the north west of the map. The current prevents you from ever getting your boat through but conspiracies around the internet claimed it was possible and doing so would lead you to the main island in Chrono Trigger. I still have my PS2 running with a rubber band holding the analog stick against the waterfall. One day...

3. The Indoctrination Theory in Mass Effect: This one blew my mind back when I watched a video on it. The idea that Shepard had been Indoctrinated by the reapers for most of the series was insane. I dont recall specifics but if you're interested you can watch a video on YouTube.

2. Polybius: No talk of video game conspiracies can be spoken without mentioning Polybius. The rumor was that this game was developed by the government to test players and brainwash them or maybe not. I cant recall because it's a mystery...

1. Whatever the fuck actually goes on at Rockstar Games: Out of everything I could know regarding games, it has to be the truth behind Rockstar. I've heard some say it's a cult. Many other podcasts and Giantbomb in particular seems VERY hush about it and doesnt want to spread rumors. Even those rumors are generally a mystery. What the hell is going on there? Julian you seem more in the know than I do. What are you hiding!?


Cage Match: Halo 2 vs Half Life 2

Alright folks let's get this out of the way. Half Life 2 is no match for Halo 2. Halo 2 is responsible for what Xbox Live and possibly Xbox as a whole is today.

On top of that, Freeman is a worse protagonist than my grandma. I'm telling you my grandma can put more character into making me a taco than Freeman did in both Half Lifes combined (does that equal 1 Life?). Dog isnt even a dog, it's a damn robot. I remember a review stating that if you didnt care about Alyx by the time the game was over than you have no soul. Guess what? I didn't give a half of one shit about her. Apparently Valve didnt either because they didn't even care enough to follow Bungie's lead and "Finish the Fight."


08/02/2019 at 02:01 PM

I'm not really aware of a lot of video game conspiracy theories, honestly. What's an example?

Cage match: Gonna go with Halo 2,  I guess, only because I played Halo 3 on 360 and it was okay. I never actually played Halo 2 and in fact never had an Xbox. Sorry.


08/02/2019 at 05:58 PM

Its kind of an open ended thing. The above examples are actually really good from exrian. It can be something inside of a game, (Example being all the ways people used to try to ressurect Aerith back in the day) or you can go super nuts and make up your own! Something like maybe you think Nintendo is run by lizard people? Go nuts! I would also accept actual story beats within a game that are conspiracy theories. Again, its pretty open ended. Be as creative as you'd like.


08/02/2019 at 05:59 PM

Oh! Or a fan theory that you like is also totally acceptable.


08/05/2019 at 02:13 AM

In that case:

1. The Atari landfill in New Mexico, which in fact turned out to be true after years of speculation. 

2. All the various Mortal Kombst conspiracies that floated around primitive online message boards and game magazine letter sections in the series' early years, such as Noob Saibot and Ermac, as well as theories on how to play as Sonya and Kano in MKII. Ed Boon and John Tobias ended up bringing most of these to life, since Mortal Kombat is one of the most fan feedback-driven game series out there.

3. Product shortages of Nintendo products such as the Wii, Switch, or the NES and SNES Classics, and early on, the DRAM shortage of 1988 which a lot of people later speculated was Nintendo's way of drumming up extra demand for Zelda II. Made-up shortages are a running theme with regards to Nintendo, as a way to inflate demand through perceived scarcity. Honestly, I'm not sure that they're all that off-base sometimes, because Nintendo is proud of the fact that its products hold their value for years instead of ending up in the bargain bin for 20 dollars within 6 months. 

Jamie Alston Staff Writer

08/05/2019 at 10:31 AM

Stage Select
I only have one, and it's what SanAndreas mentioned. (*puts on tin foil hat*)

What's the deal with these "shortages" with new Nintendo hardware? While personally, I can't say I knew about it back in the Zelda II days, I've definitely noticed this "phenomenon" in years recent- especially with the NES and Super NES Classic Editions as well as the Switch. They kept feeding us the excuse, "oh we had NO idea people were interested in little 'ol us. Are you actually saying that more than 100 people across the US want this rediculously easy to manufacture mini console? We're having SO much trouble meeting that unpresidented demand! I sure hope nobody snatches up every preorder batch and resells them for two or three times the price on eBay! That would be a real shame."

This was total B.S. and I'm still mad about it, even though I do have those consoles now. It's this supply and demand game Nintendo is playing with us that really grinds my gears. I just hate to see scalpers benefit from it and we honest paying customers get stuck between a rock and hard place every time. CONSPIRACY, Conspiracy I say!

Cage Match:
I'll go ahead and side with the underdog in the this fight. I'm going with Half-Life 2. Sure, Halo 2's effect on Xbox Live can't be denied, and I enjoyed the single player campaign well enough. But I couldn't follow Halo 2's story all that much, especially when it kept switching back and forth between Master Chief and the Arbiter. It just felt unnecessarily convoluted and like it was trying to be more important than it actually was.

Half-Life 2 has it faults for sure. But I felt like I could follow what was going on much better. And I don't mind a protagonist that doesn't talk. Nobody complains about the Doom Guy.

Super Step Contributing Writer

08/05/2019 at 05:03 PM


1. What DO Cool Spot's sunglasses do?

2. Are the Yakuza games ... partially funded by actual yakuza?

3. Were some EGM April Fool's pranks just things they saw in review copies that never made it into the final games (not an April Fool, but I still remember  renting an NCAA game specifically to see some goal posts get torn down, only to have them say in the next month's issue this was something they took out of the final game).


My memory of Half-Life 2 is watching my friend play it on XBOX years after it came out and asking if I could try some magnet puzzle he was frustrated with.

My memory of Halo 2 is actually being competent at an FPS for once and hanging out with some new friends in high school playing it in glorious couch multiplayer. 

I'll let you figure out which one I'd vote for. 


08/07/2019 at 04:50 AM

Oh, my Deus Ex comment was a riff on something but it's not important. The real important thing is, wait, have neither of you played the original Deus Ex?

STAGE SELECT: I pretty much already answered this one last week but I'll try to think of a couple. Oh, I remember the "find the Triforce in Ocarina of Time" rumor. Years later I thought it was funny that in fact there *was* a connection between getting the Triforce and Ocarina of Time, in the 1996 Spaceworld beta trailer: .

And speaking of Zelda, in A Link to the Past if you fall when battling Ganon at the end of the game you plummet to the edges of a room underneath which has a pit that's barred off. For me growing up there was *that kid* that swore up and down you could fall into it and it'd lead to some secret or another. *That kid* also claimed his father was the "famous" local weatherman (he wasn't) which I guess was an odd flex?

Oh, and I have one to share in A Link to the Past that happened to me and totally sounds like a lie. See, our family found the Chris Houlihan room *years* before it was popularized. Well, not the room exactly, but due to a physical problem that impacted our SNES (it probably got knocked and tilted but at the time it was attributed to a recent lightning storm) one time we talked to the guard near Link's house in the south at the start and he started going through almost every bit of text in the game. Among the weird ones was, "My name is Chris Houlihan. This is my top secret room. Keep it between us, OK?" One of us even called Nintendo Power and was told they had better chances of winning the lottery than that ever happening lol. If I remember correctly they seemed to know about it but were confused on how we triggered it. For years I'd try to recreate it and wonder about what weird secret LTTP had, but it never happened again of course. Much later I found out about the Chris Houlihan fail-safe room and finally at least that part made sense!

VIDEO GAME CAGE MATCH: Not a runaway at all, by my calculation based on nationwide in-home taste tests people prefer the crisp, clean taste of Half Life 2 over Halo 2 but just 20% more of the time. I was more of a Half Life fan myself so throw me in there why not, although I always kind of preferred Half Life 1 which codified so much of the "modern" narrative shooter. Halo 2 might've had a lot to do with XBOX Gold but I still can't believe people got hooked into paying for, not even servers, but just online access. If I had a time machine, I would throw peak Halo 2 nerds into a pit with peak Half Life 2 nerds. Winner? The spectators, of course.


08/07/2019 at 08:15 AM

How dare you say Master Chef is voiceless...

Cage Match:  Halo 2.  Co-op and multiplayer that got my brothers and I to sit on the couch and kill each other for hours...  
I love Half-Life 2, but come on.

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