Again in "Only the Lonely," where he takes a bit of time to answer people who got offended at his Catch Phrase, accusing him of being anti-Christian... by saying he has a great respect for God and Jesus, as evidenced by the fact that he deigns to recognize themas being below him, an honor previously only given to Willem Dafoe.
It is entirely my fault that the tumult was as tumultuous as it was, because I, in my blind foolishness, appealed for calm. I appealed for reason, and for that, I am truly, utterly, deeply sorry. And for that, you have my word, on my honor, as a brilliant game-talky man, that I will never, never be reasonable again. Thank you.
Now added to the list: Aliens: Colonial Marines, or more accurately, developers bold facedly lying about their games in order to grab money from unsuspecting gamers and run before the bad press hits.
Discrimination is a frequent topic, specifically homophobia and sexism (in both gaming and in general).
He spits the words "Appeal to a wider audience" with dripping disdain. The Golden Mean Fallacy drives him up the wall.
He also rails against the anti-consumer practices of the industry, with the most recent fixation being on "Fee to Pay" gaming. Full priced video games adopting the free to play model to create games that players pay up front for, and then try their hardest to make players pay for more stuff afterwards.
Bi the Way: He's dropped numerous hints and a few maybe-maybe-not jokes about the fact that he's seemingly bisexual; including a man of "his preferences" moving to somewhere in the US South, aside phrase like "and people like me who'll bang anyone", wondering how people could "think he would like/think certain things" while doing a BLATANTLY homoerotic act with a prop, etc. When viewers sent him first a latex fist sex toy and then a dragon tongue sex toy, he incorporated them into the show in various ways, usually while poking fun at himself or someone else. The gay furry porn comic seemed to have gone a bit too far, though, and it's hard to tell where the jokes begin or end.
Though he's been inconsistent over whether he's truly bisexual or simply "not straight" (his words), the 'real' Jim does indeed have bi leanings.
Canon Welding: Virgillio Armarndio is a carryover from his Destructoid show "The Videogame Show What I've Done."
"Wrong!" (Said in a manner of increasingly silly ways)
Blending this with a variety of Overly-Long Gag, he also has a tendency to at least once in a video (usually during the closing) draw out a word. Particularly "Fffffffffffucking."
He sort of has visual catch phrases too; whenever he talks about certain things, he usually shows stills or clips from certain sources, again and again. Greedy capitalists get Cyril Sneer from The Raccoons, for example.
Commander Contrarian: Jim will occasionally take up controversial point of views specifically for the point of antagonizing people into rethinking their positions... or at least getting pissed off about it.
You know, some weeks I finish a video, and I think "That was righteous! That was glorious! That was the truth! You sir, Jim Sterling, are Hitler!"— (pregnant pause)But a good one, obviously. I'm a good Hitler. The good Hitler of videogames.
Everyone Has Standards: He may be a monstrous ball of rage with a god complex, but woe betide those who spout sexist or otherwise discriminatory bullshit. And any game that treats rape and misogyny lightly will get heaps of scorn (why he listed Duke Nukem Forever as the worse game of its year). After "Mass Effect 3: A Gay Erotic Love Story," he did a 'normal' video tackling the subject for everyone who found the previous one too subtle, during which he goes increasingly berserk as he addresses each point brought up in the arguments people make against Mass Effect 3's Gay Option.
Godwin's Law: Jim considers himself "The good Hitler of videogames," being one of the few cases of a Hitler comparison not being used to condemn the person compared.
Hypocritical Humor: When clarifying his views on Chik-fil-a, he said he believed that no religious statements should be made outside of a church or religious discussion, right before saying his Catch Phrase.
Insult Backfire: In "Objectification And... Men?", Jim takes up accusations that he's too smug and smarmy by making a wordless noise, combined with a series of facial expressions, that can only be described as smugness personified.The Stinger revealed that the noise is him stretching out the word "me" as long as possible.
He went Visual Pun by depicting Reggie Fils-Aime with an actual large ham in "Nintendo of America."
Loony Fan: In "Guns Blazing", Jim notes that, whilst his fan base is generally friendly and even buys him gifts of his online wishlists, he inevitably attracts the occasional creep. Cue Jim revealing a fan recently bought him a sex toy — a rubber replica fist of pornstar Belladonna to be precise — that he never even asked for.
And it only gets loonier. Later gifts have included a dragon-tongue sex toy, and gay furry porn.
Mean Brit: Jim's persona has strong elements of this. Especially when talking about something that upsets him.
Mean Character, Nice Actor: Despite everything, Jim Sterling seems to be a relatively nice and reasonable guy (at least, compared to his Jimquisition persona).
Also seen in "Go Fish"; it's an unscripted episode released off schedule, and simply contains Jim ad-libbing a response to the cancelling of Fez 2, and is notably very calm, friendly and sans his Large Ham persona.
He wrapped up an episode on Kirby by doing the Kirby dance.
He has admitted to frequently reading TV Tropes on Podtoid, and is even aware of this very page. On the episode discussing the positives of the Mass Effect 3 ending controversy, he starts the episode In Medias Res while looking up this very page on a smartphone. And in the Fake Geek Boys episode, he references a now-deleted comment from the YMMV section.
Poe's Law: Apparently, some people didn't get that Jim Sterling's persona on the show is intentionally as abrasive and narcissistic as possible. So he decided to point it out as blatantly as possible without breaking character.
In Mass Effect 3 And The Case For A Gay Shepard, he was alarmed at how often people thought, "If Bioware should start catering to everyone by catering to homosexuals, they need to represent pedophiles as well". To which Jim replied, "Pedophiles...FUCK...KIDS!". Twice.
Putting on the Reich: In "Review Scores Are Not Evil" Jim contemplates his new black leather gloves, and he comments that they make him look like a fascist dictator, and that he doesn't enjoy this fact (although the tone of his voice and his Evil Laugh indicate otherwise).
Running Gag: Jim's obsession with Willem Dafoe, as represented by Miniature Fantasy Willem Dafoe.
Any one of his many catch phrases.
The appearance of a shrimp picture in every episode.
Sarcastic Clapping: Jim's response to the Xbox One being an overly restrictive gadget aimed at privileged consumers with lots of money, who already have other gadgets that do what the Xbox One can do, only better.
Signing Off Catch Phrase: "and thank God, for me!" If he drops it, it's usually either for a joke or because he's really angry.
Slash Fic: Jim wrote, and did a dramatic reading of, a story about a gamer turning gay because of Mass Effect 3 to make fun of the controversy (and often latent homophobia) surrounding the game's Gay Option.
Smug Snake: Jim was criticized for attacking Microsoft over the DRM in the Xbox One, and accused of ignoring Sony who would almost certainly follow suit; Jim was holding judgment until Sony clarified it's position on the used game market, as only Microsoft had jumped into the phone home DRM market. You couldn't find a more smug dance when Sony announced at E3 that they would not block used games on the PS 4.
Squee: Upon learning of (and defending) the upcoming Dynasty Warriors / Legend of Zelda mashup, he excitedly describes it as "game of the year game of the year." The complete lack of punctuation is audible.
In "Early Access," he decries game developers and publishers that choose to release unfinished, glitchy software to the public while charging for a full price game. So, of course, the episode is full of lazy editing, misstatements, inexplicable blank spots, and Jim even forgot hisCatch Phrase.
Straw Character: Jim doesn't exactly go out of his way to use fair representations of the people he's arguing against. His persona is also set up as one, to an extent, but of course with the intent that Strawman Has a Point.
One could argue that Strawman Has a Point is the crux of his on-screen persona. In one episode he calls himself a madman, but then points out that the games industry is so messed up that madmen like him are the only ones speaking any sense.
His videos about Nintendo of America, Duke Nukem Forever ("Too Cool to Be Cool"), and the pointlessness of trying to be mature when arguing with immature people ("Fight in the Name of Childishness"), to name a few.
His "Thank God For Me: The Jimquisition Story" video was making fun of an online gaming magazine that had made a multi-part documentary about itself.
Take That, Critics!: On the occasion of his 100th episode, "Bullshit in Sheep's Clothing," Jim takes the opportunity to look back at all the criticism he received when he first started, especially calling out those that expected his series to be short-lived.
When the Jimquisition first debuted on the Escapist, the initial response was spirited. "Who is this fat douche?" "Is he on drugs?" "How can we get rid of him?" "He's like Movie Bob, but shit." "I can't believe the Escapist got rid of Lisa Foiles for this guy." "I do hope they cancel him soon."
Here we are, 100 Mondays in, and it looks like the Jimquisition is here to stay... you lucky, lucky people.
Tastes Like Purple: He eats a Chik-fil-a sandwich before spitting it out and yelling "It tastes like hating gay people!"
Technically a Smile: Jim forces himself to maintain a smile in the intro of "Crying Through the Laughs".
Technology Porn: Combined with a bit of Hypocritical Humor; in "The Irony of PC Gaming," Jim spends a great deal of time talking about all the good games you can play without needing a $2000 state-of-the-art computer. However, he notes that he still has a pimped-out rig to play the latest games because "I'm a video game reviewer and we need that shit."
In another episode, "Previewed, Preordered, Prescrewed", he worries that publishers will attempt to sell the right to preorder a game, a "preordering the preorders" if you will. Cut to a developer that's trying to collect preorders on a game that hasn't even been announced yet.
Troll: Jim loves to provoke people into overreaction, especially so he can mock them later for it.
Up to Eleven: Jim stated during a panel that "Mass Effect 3: A Gay Erotic Love Story" forced The Escapist to create an age gate just for him, which has since been used for other videos.
Tropes discussed in his reviews and videos include:
One of the topics in "Metacritic Isn't the Problem." invoked
The entire topic in "Hate out of Ten."
One early episode ("YOUR REVIEWS ARE TEH BIAS") discusses this by showing how often people complaining about his reviews keep misusing the word "bias" to describe any reviewer they vehemently disagree with. Jim's solution? "Create your own Tumblr blog and have bananas play Singularity all FUCKING DAY!"
Aesop Amnesia: In "Guns Blazing", he talks about how Namco Bandai hasn't learned a thing from Dark Souls successes by focusing the game at a certain audience (much like the Follow the Leader entry further down), and is now dumping a AAA budget on the sequel and "hop[ing] to God that it works" in reeling in Skyrims audience as well.
Allegedly Free Game: Jim has referenced the psychology of "free to play" games, which are given away for free, but are designed to entice the player into spending money for extras during play, calling it "psychological warfare". While it's bad enough on it's own, and Jim thinks it's not too bad since he knows that free games will be trying to make money somehow, Jim rails against the industry playing the same mind games with full priced games. Games that cost full price should not be trying to beat players over the head to pay even more.
Appeal To Novelty: In "Innovation: Gaming's Snake Oil", he doesn't criticize innovation, but he does criticize when change is made for no good reason other than to change something. Jim reiterates this in his Follow the Leader rant when he points out innovation is good when differentiating products from competitors, or exploring new markets.
Auteur License: In "Creative Freedom, Strings Attached", Jim says that developers should be able to make the game they want, and that gamers cannot tell them how to make their video games. In this case, he was defending the makers of Puppeteer and Grand Theft Auto V because they have male leads, denying fans who were asking for a female option. However, he also pointed out that creative freedom does not mean freedom from criticism; the audience may not be allowed to force the developers to do anything, but it's their choice on whether or not to buy a game, and can withdraw their support when the developer doesn't listen.
Cash Cow Franchise: Made fun of in "In The Hall of the Mountain Dew," specifically mocking Halo 4's tie-in promotions with Mountain Dew, Doritos and 7-11.
Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: invoked Discussed in his "Crying Through the Laughs" video, where Jim says that a story's sad moments have more meaning, and are therefore more memorable, if things were happy first.
You can hack doors, turrets, guns... but if you fail, the doors can hack you back. It's a game where you can get too scared to shoot... there's 32 player co-op, which is broken as fuck, but have it, just fucking have it!
Digital Piracy Is Evil: He maintains that pirates need to stop dressing up their activity as anything other than stealing. However, in 2012, he put up a video saying his views had changed a bit: He still thinks it's a crime, but the more he examines copyright laws, the more he realizes (in his words) it's less about protecting the rights of artists and more about protecting the executives who bought the rights from the artists and are making money off them. So getting upset at pirates is like getting upset at a thief stealing something that was stolen in the first place. (He puts in a caveat that this does not apply to self-published creators, in which case he still gets on people's cases to actually buy the product and give them the money they deserve.) He also tends to play middle-man too, also saying that there are no real good guys or bad guys in the piracy issue after 4.5 million copies of The Witcher 2 and a 90% piracy rate for World of Goo.
Discount Lesbians: Bordering on Berserk Button. While defending the availability of gay and lesbian romance in "Mass Effect 3 and the Case for a Gay Shepard," he mentions how certain fans make the argument that since Liara is an asari, she doesn't "count" as a legitimate Gay Option. He absolutely eviscerates this idea, saying that Liara may be "genderless," but given her feminine appearance, if FemShep is attracted to an alien who happens to resemble a human woman, then she just might be attracted to women to begin with.
Jim:Grow. Up. It is a ludicrous argument to fuckin' say that Liara "doesn't count" because she's an alien without a gender. She looks like a woman. If another woman is attracted to her, she might have some gay tendencies. It's that simple.
Jim points out a pretty arrant Double Standard surrounding a lot of retro games and Dynasty Warriors. Dynasty Warriors is constantly criticised (Especially by IGN) as being too "button mashery" and "simplistic", whereas people talk about games like Golden Axe and Final Fight and hold them in high regard...when Dynasty Warriors is more or less a spiritual successor. He also points out another Double Standard when Hardcore Gamers criticise games as being too simplistic, when of course, games that are often still held in high regards were no more complex than the games they hate on.
Also a more traditional double standard in "The Creepy Cull of Female Protagonists," where Jim notes that women in games seem to not be allowed to be protagonists while expressing any desire for physical intimacy or impetus towards a personal goal. One of the only times it gets close is in Indigo Prophecy, but even then the sex is initiated by the male protagonist.
The gender divide is called out again in "Objectification and... Men?", where Jim dismantles the claim that video games objectify men as much as women. Jim counters by saying that males are idealized, not objectified, and are put in so that male gamers can take on the role of these characters to play out their power fantasies, instead of a piece of beefcake for women gamers to drool over.
Fan Dumb: invoked Jim frequently mocks the overreactions of angry fanboys, but especially takes them on in the "BOYCOTT!" episode.
Unpleasable Fanbase: He has called the Zelda fanbase the "Spoiled brats" of video game fandom, since they had Nintendo putting out new ones every couple years that were always well-done.
Focus Group Ending: In "Damn Fine Coffee", Jim criticizes the use of focus groups and how they are driving game development; while focus groups are a useful tool, they have problems and can be abused. Some focus groups submit to peer pressure and say what they think people want to hear rather than their true opinion, which does come out when you study their buying habits. Other times, the researchers are creating focus groups with a built in Confirmation Bias who only tell them to stay the course instead of pointing out problems that proper research would reveal. And there's the Follow the Leader issue, where companies competing against an established game will create a focus group of fans of that game, who tell them what they liked about the game and they copy it; but the game fails to sell because the fans of the first game already have the game in question and don't care about a knock-off.
Follow the Leader: In "Perfect Pasta Sauce", he chides the industry for its attitude of copying the most successful formulas instead of trying new or different ideas to seek a broader audience. He compares it to Prego pasta sauce who beat rival Ragu, not by making a better pasta sauce, but by making several varieties of sauces that could reach different markets.
Game of The Year Edition: Blames them, multiple store-exclusive Pre-Order Bonus, the Limited Special Collector's Ultimate Edition, and constantly discounting games soon after they come out for the reasons publishers have trouble selling games new. The die-hard fans feel cheated for buying the game when it came out rather than wait until the "complete" games comes out, and other consumers don't know which version to buy or just wait until the price drops.
I Am the Trope: He doesn't say that Resident Evil 6 is aboutSurvival Horror. He says that it is Survival Horror. That is, Capcom is terrified of losing money so they made the game a hodgepodge of so many different types of games that it resembles a soupy sludge. They will do anything to survive!
Insane Troll Logic: Jim's impression of David Cage in "Emotions, Polygons and Ellen Page," mocking Cage's idea that a game is more capable of expressing emotions when it has a higher polygon count.
Ironic Echo: At the end of "Why An Always-On DRM Console Would Be Dumb Dumb Dumb", Jim chastises the industry for not trusting gamers and sticking all sorts of anti-consumer behavior on them, telling them to "deal with it"; Jim believes that soon the gamers will get tired of this and abandon the big publishers, and when they wonder what happened, the gamers will tell them to "deal with it".
Jump Scare: "Scare Tactics" was dedicated to defending this Trope from the criticism that's usually thrown toward it, namely that it's "cheap".
Loners Are Freaks: Discussed in "Only the Lonely", about the gradual increase in both forced multiplayer aspects and social networking of games impacting on the experience of those who play games to get away from other people for a short while.
Misblamed: Discussed in "Toxic". Jim says that getting angry at anti-consumer behavior is justified, and that negative backlash can result in positive change, but it needs to be aimed correctly. Many decisions come from Executive Meddling, while community managers, and specific developers are in the cross-hairs as they are the most visible. Instead of picking on a single individual within a company, gamers should be aiming the blame at the company as a whole.
Murder Simulators: The episode "Desensitized to Violence", obviously, was about this. To prove his point about how people aren't stupid enough to not tell the difference between real violence and video game violence, he showed graphic video of Budd Dwyer's public suicide in order to demonstrate that realistic violence, while more understated than video game violence, is often too gruesome to be entertaining. By contrast, violence in games, movies, etc. is far less desensitizing precisely because it's so over-the-top.
Never My Fault: Jim says if there was anything good about the Xbox One, it's that if it succeeds in killing used gaming, then the industry will have run out of excuses for their own failure, and will have to face the fact that industry decline is their own fault.
No, Except Yes: Calls out publishers for adding DRM to their games and trying to hide it as a feature. When EA said that SimCity didn't have DRM and that it was an MMO, Jim said that the whole point of making it an "MMO" was to use the always online aspect as DRM.
No Export for You: The source of rage against Nintendo of America and its refusal to export a number of cult hits from Japan.
No Such Thing as Bad Publicity: invoked He feels that the vitriolic (and often sexually-charged) backlash against Anita Sarkeesian of Feminist Frequency has not only given her views more publicity than she could've dreamed of beforehand, but has inadvertently proven her point about sexism in gaming.
Rewarding Inactivity: In "PS4 - Doing Nothing, Meaning Everything", he is mildly disappointed that everyone treats Sony like The Messiah for not blocking used games on the PS 4, when it means that they are essentially doing nothing different than before. However, he goes on to state that with Microsoft and several high profile third parties (EA, Activision, Ubisoft, etc...) going the DRM route, that doing nothing probably did take some fortitude and courage, and that gamers are right to praise a company that isn't shifting towards anti-consumer behavior.
Sequelitis: invoked Jim lambasts cowardly publishers like Ubisoft who only want to develop games they know are capable of churning out more sequels, with no compromise for one-off titles. It's gotten to the point where some developers call the first game in a series a loss leader which the profit from the sequels would cover. Publishers don't get all the blame, however; he criticizes the audience as well for constantly demanding sequels, even if the game ended perfectly as a stand-alone title, which often forces the hands of publishers seeing easy profit.
So Bad, It's Good: invoked The voice acting from the Dynasty Warriors games, especially the earlier ones.
The Starscream: Jim compares the game industry to the infamous Decepticon in "When the Starscreams Kill Used Games". The game industry panders to used game shops like GameStop for exclusive promotions, while blaming the used game market for their own decline. If the used game market was hurting the industry so much, then why would the industry even work with GameStop?
This Means War!: At the end of "PS 4 - Doing Nothing, Meaning Everything", he says that Microsoft has declared war not on Nintendo or Sony but on the consumer for its used games policies.
They Just Didn't Care: invoked In the episode simply titled "Konami", Jim talks about the rather abysmal job Konami is doing as a publisher. Failures include releasing Metal Gear Solid HD Collection in one of the busiest holiday release seasons in history (and on the same day as gaming juggernaut Modern Warfare 3 to boot), not promoting Blades of Time at all and even getting the release date wrong, releasing threeSilent Hill games in a month, and the atrocious handling of Silent Hill HD Collection.
Values Dissonance: invoked In response to criticism over the Uncanny Valley use of Jiggle Physics in Dead or Alive 5, the developers defended themselves by saying that it was popular in Japan and that complainers from the West should just deal with it. Jim said it would be acceptable if the game was intended for Japan only, but since the game was made for an international audience, they have to conform to the social norms in foreign markets as well.
Villain Protagonist: Jim likes games where he plays a villain, partially because of how horrific it is to play a character of such opposite morality, and because villains are more interesting. In "To Play the Villain", he points out games like Kane and Lynch and Saints Row 2 for putting players in the shoes of truly horrible people, while criticizing Overlord and later Saints Row games which pit the protagonist against people who are far worse, and come out looking like Anti-Villains or Anti-Heroes by comparison, thus losing the nastiness of proper villainous characters.
In "Lugoscababib Discobiscuits", Jim is annoyed by everyone using "Ludonarrative Dissonance" just because it sounds cool. In particular, he says that people are using it to criticize violence in games, when it really means a disconnect between the narrative told in gameplay, versus the narrative told by cutscenes. He looked at Tomb Raider (2013), in which Lara Croft is supposed to be an archaeologist who hates guns, and yet spends the game killing people like a pro; and compared it to Bioshock Infinite, which also has lots of violence, but stars a violent person, being dropped into a city that looks peaceful but is really hiding a violent underbelly. Both have been criticized for ludonarrative dissonance, when only Tomb Raider is a true example.