Achievement Oriented

Achievement Oriented

Every week, The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion delve into the virtual world, discussing the latest video game releases and trends, interviewing industry experts, and exploring fascinating subcultures.... Show More

Episodes

In an extra-long, year-ending episode, The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss Ben's VR Christmas gift (0:15), before welcoming Ringer colleagues Justin Charity and Matt James for a roundtable debate about the best games of 2017, which they share via four personal top 10 lists and an overall combined ranking (5:05). Then they bring on indie designer Jason Roberts to explain how he conceived of and created the new ha... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss their opinions about porgs and cute creatures in 'Star Wars' and imagine an alternate history in which BioWare adapts 'Game of Thrones' instead of 'Star Wars' (0:15). Then they bring on three writers to discuss four games whose content keeps changing, talking to Polygon's Charlie Hall about 'PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds' coming to consoles and 'Star Citizen' going to court (8... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss the scare-reducing "safe mode" in the new Xbox port of sci-fi horror game 'Soma' (0:15) then welcome colleagues Justin Charity and Victor Luckerson to talk about Nintendo's dramatic 2017 turnaround, 'Xenoblade Chronicles 2,' and the future of the Switch (8:05). Lastly Ben and Jason bring on Representative Chris Lee of the Hawaii House of Representatives to explain his plans to... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss the microtransaction controversy sweeping the industry and talk to the influential Reddit poster who helped start the backlash against 'Battlefront II' (8:40).They then bring on ESPN esports reporter Jacob Wolf to preview the advent of the innovative Overwatch League and address the questions that Blizzard still has to answer about 'Overwatch' as an esport and the big-buy-in l... Read more

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November 24, 2017 53 min

The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion soundtrack your holiday travel with their first-ever mailbag episode, answering listener questions about the best and worst trends and games of 2017, the games they most regret missing, open-world design vs. linear levels and single-player vs. multiplayer, how Triple-A games can cut costs, the balance between new IP and sequels, the latest esports and streaming developments, how to in... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss the recent releases of several high-profile Switch ports, what their success means for the system's future, and what might have been for the PlayStation Vita (0:57). Then they review the highlights and lowlights of the multiplayer modes and single-player campaign of 'Star Wars: Battlefront II' and lament the game's heavy-handed use of microtransactions and loot boxes (6:15). L... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss whether 'Assassin's Creed: Origins' innovates enough on the franchise's familiar formula to bring them back to the fold (0:15), then welcome Polygon senior reporter Samit Sarkar for a conversation about the benefits and shortcomings of the Xbox One X, the 4K and HDR difference, why the console's presence in the market makes for such a difficult purchasing decision, and what th... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss whether 'Assassin's Creed: Origins' innovates enough on the franchise's familiar formula to bring them back to the fold (0:15), then welcome Polygon senior editor Samit Sarkar for a conversation about the benefits and shortcomings of the Xbox One X, the 4K and HDR difference, why the console's presence in the market makes for such a difficult purchasing decision, and what the ... Read more

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In an intimate bonus episode, The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss Jason's concussion (0:15) and Ben's binge with three newly released games: back-to-basics big-budget shooter 'Call of Duty: WW II' (6:12), 'The Frozen Wilds' (the first downloadable content for game of the year candidate 'Horizon Zero Dawn') (24:23), and throwback Xbox/PC platformer 'Super Lucky's Tale' (33:24).

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion briefly discuss the latest trailer for 'The Last of Us Part II' (1:00) then bring on Kotaku news editor and 'Blood, Sweat, and Pixels' author Jason Schreier for a wide-ranging discussion about 'Super Mario Odyssey' and Nintendo's stellar 2017 (9:00); the fall of Visceral Games and the cancellation of another high-profile 'Star Wars' game (27:00); the proliferation of loot boxes and mi... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion mark the pod's first anniversary by discussing a quartet of recent releases. First, Ben and Jason examine what makes 'Super Mario Odyssey' amazing and why the Switch is owning 2017 (1:00). Then they talk to 'Achievement Oriented' producer Kyle Crichton about 'Middle Earth: Shadow of War' (21:42), before welcoming in colleague Justin Charity to recount his impressions of 'Wolfenstein I... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss the beginning of the grueling/exciting torrent of fall releases and what they anticipate will be a successful gaming holiday season (0:55), then bring on comedian Nick Wiger to discuss his experience with 'Stardew Valley,' the secret to the game's addictiveness and longevity, and its recent Switch port (9:32). Lastly, Ben talks to Martin Emborg, the game director and art direc... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion talk about Ben's video game bachelor party, how 'GoldenEye 007' has aged, and ultra-precise esports competitors (1:45). Then they bring on Mike Stauffer of 'NBA 2K' developer Visual Concepts to ask how he manages rosters and develops player ratings for the game, how he incorporates (or ignores) feedback from NBA players and fans, and how advanced stats have made the ratings more sophi... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss Jason's ever-changing real-life look and how his hairstyles affect his character-creation strategy (1:40), then share their impressions of the new Windows and Xbox run-and-gun game 'Cuphead' (7:30). Next, they bring on brothers and 'Cuphead' co-creators Chad and Jared Moldenhauer to explain how they conceived and perfected the game's eye-catching art while delivering difficult... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion reminisce about 'Red Dead Redemption' and react to the trailer for 'Red Dead Redemption 2' (1:10). Then they bring on their colleague Victor Luckerson to recap his all-day marathon with the newly released SNES Classic, weigh in on which 16-bit classics have held up the best, and forecast the future of retro gaming (7:10). Lastly, Ben and Jason bring on Kotaku's Stacie Ponder to discus... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion reflect on why video game makers are hesitant to talk about the development process publicly (0:15). Then they talk to one who isn't: Walt Williams, who's worked on 'BioShock,' 'Spec Ops: The Line,' and 'Star Wars Battlefront II,' among many other games, and joins the podcast to discuss how game-writing works (20:35), the perils of crunch (25:20), the pitfall of player choice (38:42),... Read more

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September 22, 2017 47 min

The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss Jason's inaugural experience as a video game writer on 'NBA 2K18' (1:05). Then they talk to 'NBA 2K18' director Chris Papierniak about the difference between game direction and film direction, how to handle the development of a game that can't be delayed, how to channel NBA drama into an E-rated game, and the expanding scope of sports games (17:33).

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss Jason's return to the new and (possibly) improved 'No Man's Sky' (0:55), then bring on colleague Justin Charity to talk about celebrity streamer PewDiePie's latest offense, indie developer Campo Santo's response, the uncertain symbiosis between streamers and publishers, and why gamers get toxic online (5:55). Then they bring on NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory systems engineer M... Read more

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For their 50th episode, The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion welcome Kotaku news editor Jason Schreier to discuss the industry trends and revelations inside his new book ('Blood, Sweat, and Pixels: The Triumphant, Turbulent Stories Behind How Video Games Are Made') and their early impressions of 'Destiny 2' (2:50). Then they bring on Sophia Park and Penelope Evans, the cocreators of 'Localhost' and 'Arc Symphony,' to tal... Read more

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The Ringer's Ben Lindbergh and Jason Concepcion discuss their impressions of 'Undertale,' 'Sonic Mania,' and 'Uncharted: The Lost Legacy' (0:45), then interview 'Uncharted' writer and Naughty Dog veteran Josh Scherr about the game's breakneck development, Naughty Dog's winning formula for 'Uncharted' ideas, and how he feels about working on sequels versus new series (16:30). Lastly, Ben and The Ringer's Alison Herman talk to Jesse ... Read more

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