And Thank God For Me!
TRUTH. PRIDE. GARME JURNALIZM!
A Web Original
show formerly hosted on The Escapist
by Jim Sterling, an Escapist (and formerly Destructoid) reviewer infamous for his tendency to provoke outrage and with a sizable Hatedom
. He assumes the persona of a caricature of himself
to make broader points about video games and the video game industry. Episodes can be found here
and new content can be found on his website www.thejimquisition.com. Just make sure to include the "the" as Jimquisition.com, for unknown reasons, is something rather different.
Jim Sterling announced on November 14, 2014 that he's going to go crowd-funded via Patreon, so none of his anti-corporate videos will be powered by corporate-sponsored ads (and thus, he will be free of editorial oversight and also free of any possible hypocrisy). Donate to him yourself if you like
Tropes featured include:
- Accentuate the Negative: Although he's willing to expound on it if he feels it's truly negative.
- Appropriated Appellation: After the "epic meltdown of the Slaughtering Grounds developer", Jim started calling himself Jim Fucking Sterling, Son, which was an insult thrown at him in the developer's review of his review. He's since made it into a Catch Phrase.
- Arch-Enemy: Ubisoft has become this, with eight episodes about them in 2014. Jim frequently lampshades this.
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: At the end of "Piracy - Trying To Kill It Makes It Stronger":
Nobody's ever going to beat piracy. You can't stop people from wanting stuff for free, just like you can't stop people murdering, taking drugs, robbing houses, or watching Jeff Dunham
- Author Filibuster: The entire series is just one Author Filibuster after another, though it's tongue-in-cheek.
- Backhanded Apology: After Jim's call for calm discussion in "Dragon's Frown" backfired spectacularly, Jim decides to "apologize" for the Internet Backdraft he incidentally caused.
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.
- Berserk Button:
- The "you didn't play the game correctly" argument as a response to not liking a game. Also see Cluster F-Bomb and Everyone Has Standards.
- 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. When he addressed this in a video, said video opened to him battering a copy of the game with the "dildo bat" prop from Saints Row: The Third.
- Discrimination is a frequent topic, specifically homophobia and sexism (in both gaming and in general).
- On a related note, the belief that "real gamers" are invariably cisgender (non-transsexual) heterosexual white males, as shown in this Stealth Insult saturated video.
- 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. To this end, he gave Final Fantasy: All the Bravest and Dungeon Keeper Mobile his "Worst Game of the Year" awards for 2013 and 2014, respectively, because of their overuse of microtransactions.
- The concept of pre-orders. While he makes an exception for games that would go out of stock easily by studios such as Atlus and NIS America, he's against developers making certain parts of the game pre-order only, saying that: 1. It's almost impossible for the game to go out of stock, 2. The hypocrisy of AAA publishers decrying the used games industry, yet willing to work with Gamestop to make exclusive material, a chain that encourages said used games market. and 3. Cutting out parts that should be on the games proper or as DLC.
- Customers who believe that since appealing to a wider audience via social issues makes them uncomfortable, developers should restrict their artistic pallet to cater exclusively to them, and then claim they're being "reasonable."
- 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.
- The Cameo: Jim appears in a secret area in The Angry Video Game Nerd Adventures.
- Canon Welding: Virgillio Armarndio is a carryover from his Destructoid show "The Videogame Show What I've Done."
- Catch Phrase:
- "And thank God for me!"
- "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.
- "I'm Jim Fucking Sterling, Son." See Appropriated Appelation.
- The Cameo: His "Photorealistic Sociopathy" video has a clip from Hatventures in it.
- Celebrity Resemblance: His appearance and even his voice are quite similar to that of Garth Marenghi, which he even lampshaded on a podcast.
- Country Matters: Initially, but Jim has since made it a point not to use gender-specific slurs.
- Cluster F-Bomb: Jim hardly backs down from obscenities, but it was Dead Space 2's crappy multiplayer and online pass system that drove him to previously unseen levels of profanity.
As a new, paying customer, I hate, hate, HATE that barrier being put in front of me, where I can't just hop into an online game on a whim, instead of having to redeem a fucking 21-digit redemption code on a fucking controller using the Xbox 360's fucking laggy input just to play Dead fucking Space fucking 2's fucking multi-player that wasn't even fucking any fucking good in the fucking first fucking fucking place, fuck!
- Companion Cube: Miniature Fantasy Willem Defoe
- 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.
- Cool and Unusual Punishment: According to Jim, Square Enix needs to stop announcing games all the time or Yoishi Ada needs to get kicked in the ass with steel toed boots.
- Department of Redundancy Department:
- When Jim became independent, the intro was changed to "Jim Sterling presents Jimquisition with Jim Sterling".
- In Why Do People Hate EA?
- Disapproving Look: According to Visceral's John Calhoun, people expect mobile games to have Freemium content in it, so a console horror game must include it as well. Jim tips down his glasses and sighs.
- Dissimile: In the "digital games" episode:
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.
- Enforced Plug: Parodied. Jim himself tries to market Mountain Dew, taking a sip... which makes him go blind.
"It tastes like sugar and hedgehog piss!"
- 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 worst 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.
- Evil Laugh:
- Exact Words: Jim says that he had several good opportunities to take a shot at David Cage in his "Irrational Decisions (or Freedom in Chains)" video, but wasn't going for the easy shot because he's mature. In the video, he doesn't mention Cage once; instead he waits until the closer and hammers him there.
- A God Am I:
- Taken to its absolute extreme at the end of the Ubisoft review:
- 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 them as being below him, an honor previously only given to Willem Dafoe.
- He responds to accusations of being "Christ-o-phobic" by saying it's probably the other way around. His proof?
- 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: Quite often
- 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.
- After chewing out publishers for exploiting business models he used to like, he'll pretend to use the same business model himself. His video about "early access" is unfinished, and in his video about Evolve and its saturated pre-order bonuses Jim advertises that next week's video has pre-order bonuses.
- 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.
- Large Ham: As a persona.
- 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.
- Madness Mantra: When Jim did a Squirty Play of Air Control, he already started to see the mess of problems the game had. After playing the "complete" version of the game, he sees a mess of organs strewn all over the place and sees how huge the brains are and could not have possibly fit in the heads of the character models sitting nearby. The whole sight sent him into a short raving fit as he kept looking between a person's head and the loose brains.
Jim: Why are the brains that big!? That's a head! That's a brain! Head! Brain! Head! Brain! Five dollars! Five dollars everyone! Attention all surgeons on deck! This game costs five dollars! Brain! Head! What the fuck!?note
- Mean Brit: Jim's persona has strong elements of this. Especially when talking about something that upsets him.
- Mean Character, Nice Actor: Really, there's two Jim Sterlings in the Jimquisition. First up is the Jim character who appears on camera, the man who defines Refuge in Audacity, the man who sets some sort of new record for the Small Name, Big Ego trope. Despite all of that, the other Jim Sterling, the one who voices the meat of each episode and writes reviews for Destructoid, seems to be a relatively nice and reasonable guy.
- 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.
- Mic Drop: Done twice so far. Played straight in "Free-to-wait". Another episode parodied it, with Jim forgetting to unplug he mic or even turn it off, so the mic just swung back and forth making noise each time it hit the podium.
- Mockumentary: "Thank God For Me: The Jimquisition Story."
- Motor Mouth: Some of more long-winded rants might make you stop for breath in sympathy, because he doesn't appear to.
- Nightmare Fuel: In-universe. During "The Survival of Horror" special, Scarescrow unleashes some of his fear toxin on Jim and we see what Jim is most fearful of: Making out with a copy of Aliens: Colonial Marines.
- Oh, Crap: When he thought he didn't have to discuss something controversial, and then was told the week's subject was art games.
- Once an Episode:
- Jim's squirty plays always begin with "Hello you [adjective] [noun]!"
- Nearly every episode of the Podquisition has included them railing against Ubisoft for one reason or another. This wasn't planned, Ubisoft just seems to screw up that much.
- Poe's Law: Apparently, some people didn't get that Jim Sterling's persona on the show is intentionally abrasive and narcissistic. So he decided to point it out as blatantly as possible without breaking character.
- Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: His closing words for the "Online Passes Are Bad For Everyone" episode: "How. fffffffffFUCKING. Dare. You."
- 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).
- Rapid-Fire "No!": When he was told that week's subject was the controversy of "The Definition of Art Games".
- 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.
- Self-Deprecation: Whenever he wants to highlight the absurdity of his persona, he engages in a little self-deprecating humor, though without completely breaking character.
We all know why ["Gamer Guys" pretend to like videogames], don't we?
To get the attention of women and gay men and people like me who'll bang anyone thinking that they'll impress me.
- Serious Business: For Jim, all of video games counts, but rental games and the problems surrounding them seem to be his biggest pet peeve.
- Shaped Like Itself: His "100% Objective Review" of Final Fantasy XIII, in avoiding all subjective descriptions of the game, resorts mostly to tautologies, such as "You will like Final Fantasy XIII if you like Final Fantasy XIII".
- Show Within a Show: "Virgillio Armarndio's Art Hole," which is also another case of Stylistic Suck.
- Sidekick: Jim has one in the form of Miniature Fantasy Willem Dafoe, who usually yells outrageous things at the top of his voice.
- Sincerity Mode: In his 100th episode, his satirical "thank God for me" running gag is changed to the completely sincere "I would like to thank God for me".
- 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.
- Small Name, Big Ego: The entire point of the Jimquisition character.
- 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 withholding judgment until Sony clarified its 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 PS4.
- Spell My Name with a "The": He makes it very clear that the Jimquisition website's URL is thejimquisition.com. He has uncharacteristically humble reasons for this.
- Spit Take: When asked to do an episode about Microsoft offering $100 for PS3 trade-ins on an Xbox One Jim said he wouldn't because the video would consist of nothing but him drinking coffee and doing this.
- 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.
- Stepford Smiler: In the opening of Crying Through the Laughs.
- Stock Footage: Jim tends to use a lot of clips from the games he's talking about, voicing over the footage to fill up time.
- Stylistic Suck: All original artwork for the show is done by Jim himself in MS Paint. He admitted on Desert Bus For Hope that the MS Paint artstyle amuses him, and that he'd never hire an actually good artist to do intentionally bad artwork.
- 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 his Catch Phrase.
- After Microsoft reversed their always-online DRM policies with the Xbox One, Jim made an "emergency video" released the same day the announcement was made. The theme song abruptly cuts off with a Record Needle Scratch, Jim runs in with the lights off, and at the end of the video, he runs through his Catch Phrase very quickly.
- 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.
- Suspiciously Specific Denial: Jim makes it clear he is not funneling the money from his Patreon to write a novel, the novel is not about Corey Feldman's bus pass coming to life and falling in love with him, and it is not called "Romancing the Bus Pass". It doesn't even have a publisher.
- Take That:
- 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."
- Tempting Fate:
- At the conclusion of "Hate Out Of Ten", he nervously asks "At least we're not criticizing 9's, at least now. Right? Yeah?" Cue a blog criticizing Games Radar for giving The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword a 9.
- 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.
- Trrrilling Rrrs: Jim is fond of this as a Played for Laughs Verbal Tic, especially when he wants to emphasize the pompous and vaguely posh persona he uses on the show.
- 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."
- 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: Some game developers just never learn.
- 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.
- Jim brings up "The Molyneux Cycle". Peter Molyneux has a bad habit of overhyping his games way beyond what he is able to deliver, apologizing after the game is released and missed the goal, and then promising the next game will live up to the hype, which it doesn't.
- 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 its 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.
- He also accuses SEGA of thinking this, due to their insistence on making wide-scale redesigns for each game, rather than sticking to what worked in previous games and building on said games good ideas.
- Asshole Victim: In "EA versus Zynga- The Lesser of Two Evils," Jim reminds us that, just because EA had a legitimate grievance against Zynga doesn't mean we need to feel sorry for them. It certainly doesn't mean they've become the good guys.
- 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.
- Can't Take Criticism: What he accuses indie developers like Wild Games Studios of suffering from in Corrupt, Censoring, Suicidal Indie Devs
- 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: 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.
- The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: Jim loves E.Y.E for this reason.
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.
- Don't Like, Don't Read: He says that if people were really going to hate the Water Temple changes in the The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time remake, or if they somehow knew a game that wasn't even out yet would suck, to just not buy it.
- Double Standard:
- 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.
- From the same episode, Jim cites an interview by the Penny Arcade Report where the creators had to fight with their publisher to have a female protagonist, because female protagonists don't sell. Except it turns out that publishers tend to give games with female protagonists less funding and marketing, and even refuse to put them on their own box covers.
- 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.
- Even Evil Has Standards: In his video asking why people hate EA, Jim referred to Activision as satanic, and follows it up by giving them the tag line "Hey, at least we're not EA!"
- Fan Dumb: 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.
- Fan Hater: Jim condemns this type of mindset as being the lowest form of selfish. He specifically sites that he has received criticism for not bashing Dynasty Warriors or Dm C Devil May Cry.
- 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.
- Gameplay and Story Segregation: The episode "Lugoscababib Discobiscuits" is mostly about people who don't know what "ludonarrative dissonance" actually is, but it does point out a straight example. As a show of solidarity that he isn't trying to outright shill Bioshock Infinite, he complains that the game abuses the Take Your Time trope, that no matter how urgent the story claims to be you always have time to stuff your face with cupcakes you dug out of the trash.
- Girl-Show Ghetto: In-Universe. The Creepy Cull of Female Protagonists is all about this trope on the industry.
- Grey and Gray Morality: Between AAA studios and indie devs. Jim points out some big companies like EA, Microsoft and Ubisoft as lying, truly irredeemable companies obsessed with anti-consumer practices, but wind up shooting themselves in the foot. That doesn't mean indie companies get a free pass. While he generally supports indie gaming as an outlet for new and unique ideas, he calls out some companies like Dark Energy Digital and Wild Games Studios for their bullying tactics and constant abuse of YouTube's flawed copyright system in Corrupt, Censoring, Suicidal Indie Devs.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: In "Children of the Resolution", Game companies that once pushed the graphical envelope ahead of gameplay, like Square Enix, are getting what's coming to them as the graphical arms race is running them into bankruptcy, and being overshadowed by games focusing on gameplay first, like Minecraft.
- Hypocrite: Called out Ubisoft for the graphics in Watch_Dogs, who previously said it would be pinnacle of next-gen graphics, and then tries to say "graphics don't matter" when they couldn't deliver.
- I Am the Noun: He doesn't say that Resident Evil 6 is about Survival 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!
- Impossibly Cool Clothes: Showed a picture of Tetsuya Nomura's take on Batman as a sign of everything that is wrong with Square Enix. Nomura's designs are a clutter of details with no overall philosophy, and are immemorable due to the confusion, whereas the most iconic characters in video games have simpler, easier to identify designs. He extends this to whole games: Final Fantasy IV may have been trite and silly, but it was memorable for sticking to its plot, while Final Fantasy XIII is a mess of plot details that just confuses people rather than crafting a world that people can get into.
- Inherently Funny Words: "Chungus." Originally comes from Jim's Destructoid podcast and YouTube channel.
- 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.
- Actually, technically the logic itself is watertight. The whole point in the argument is to arrive at a ridiculous conclusion, to demonstrate how wrong David Cage's premise is.
- 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".
- It's Popular, Now It Sucks: He calls it "Call of Duty Syndrome".
- 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.
- Meaningless Meaningful Words: David Cage and "emotion," as discussed in "Emotions, Polygons and Ellen Cage." As far as Jim can tell, David Cage doesn't even know what emotions are.
- Mis-blamed: Discussed in-universe 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.
- Mundane Made Awesome: The shortage of amiibos is hyped up to lead to an Amiibogeddon that leads to an eternal and deadly Black Friday.
- 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.
- Never Trust a Trailer: Another thing which is pissing Jim off, especially since he was a victim of it.
- Aliens: Colonial Marines: A game with an infamous trailer showing one of the developers playing a heavily scripted version of the game, suggesting it was representative of the real thing. It wasn't. Jim made two videos covering this game: a break down of the phony Marines trailer, pointing out how much of it was or wasn't in the game, followed by one talking about people who watch phony pre-views and buy pre-orders are getting "pre-screwed".
- Watch_Dogs: Another game that used prerendered graphics in a trailer, only for the real in-game graphics to not be as good. This was exacerbated because Watch Dogs was promoted as the next evolution of video game graphics, so even though the game still looked good, it was considered crap by comparison to the initial videos.
- E3 2014: As far as Jim is concerned, Nintendo won E3 purely on the basis that they showed more gameplay videos and more live demos than anyone else.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Brings this up with Ubisoft and Sega's usage of post-release review embargoes to try and delay criticism of Assassin's Creed: Unity and Sonic Boom. Post release embargoes might result in more sales, but they end up doing very little to silence bad publicity, and do much more in associating the developers and their game with more than just the games problems.
- 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.
- Jim states in his first video about the Xbox One that he was very annoyed by all the tweets asking him to make a video against it. He said he was not the public's "performing chimp", and he wasn't going to "tear it a new one" just because they wanted him to. Then he adds that well, he was going to tear it a new one, but not just because they wanted him to.
- 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:
- 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. He feels that the vitriolic (and often sexually-charged) backlash against Anita Sarkeesian of
- The Rise of YouTube Fodder". Jim points out that developers who intentionally make bad games, in the hopes that YouTube celebrities will give them free publicity, will fail because their audiences are either too young to buy the game (fans of ranting YouTubers) or too smart to buy it (fans of more analytical YouTubers). Deconstructed in "
- No True Scotsman: In "It's Not a Video Game!", Jim points to two groups who arbitrarily categorize specific video games as not being games. First are people who are trying to dismiss games they don't like, as if changing the label can remove them from discussion. Second are "artists" who view their artwork as something beyond normal video games, and thus immune to criticism from reviewers and critics.
- Not So Different: AAA studios and indie devs. Both groups have a tendency to lie, make shoddy products for a quick buck, generally treat the customer like crap and threaten to crash the industry as a whole.
- Obvious Beta/They Just Didn't Care: Discussed in the "Early Access" episode; this being the Jimquisition, the entire video is half-assed and clearly not up to scratch. It even culminates with Jim revealing he takes serious flak for releasing joke or filler episodes when the show can't meet deadlines, yet people are happily paying full price for widely disappointing and unplayable alphas/betas.
- Public Medium Ignorance: According to some industry insiders, a lot of the executives and marketing heads running the game industry were pulled from "packaged goods" industries, and have no idea how to operate in a content industry like the video game business. One e-mail said of marketers that if it wasn't Clash of Clans, Candy Crush, or Call of Duty, then they hadn't heard of it.
- Railroading: He mentions that if you want to tell a story, you more or less have to do this, or else people will just ignore it.
- Rape as Drama/Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: Discussed in the episode "Rape vs. Murder". He concludes that the reason why rape is treated as more evil than, say, murder is because the latter action has societal justifications for it (revenge, paying evil unto evil, the glory of war and the military, etc.), while rape, which involves dehumanizing an (often) defenseless victim, almost never does. In addition, while all of us are eventually going to die, and very few of us face the threat of getting brutally murdered, rape is a very real threat for almost anyone.
- Reality Is Unrealistic: He points out that real-life violence is downright disturbing due to how quick it's over.
- Refuge in Audacity: The reason why his episode on abusive behavior in the gaming community is called "I'm Going to Murder Your Children."
- Rewarding Inactivity: In "PS4 - Doing Nothing, Meaning Everything", he is mildly disappointed that everyone treats Sony like Messianic Archetype for not blocking used games on the PS4, 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.
- Romance Sidequest: Jim savagely goes after the entire concept (and its sister trope, the Optional Sexual Encounter) with a knife between the teeth in "Sexual Failing." He even goes so far as to argue that the Dead Or Alive Beach Volleyball games are more respectable, since, as he puts it, they are at least open and honest about their nature as wish-fulfillment.
- The Scrappy/Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: Jim discusses how Duke Nukem would probably be far more likable as a character if they stopped trying to play him so straight.
- Self-Deprecation: Jim likes to make fun of his weight at times.
- Sequelitis: 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: The voice acting from the Dynasty Warriors games, especially the earlier ones.
- Something Completely Different: In "Vertigo," Jim is inexplicably wearing an eye mask that has a pair of eyes on them... which he points out in an almost operatic soprano. Supposedly, it's to distract from him falling back on his old habits of "gender issues and industry bullshit."
But we do have one new thing for you, just to keep things fresh: my new eyyyeeeess.
- 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 "PS4 - 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.
- “Stop Having Fun” Guys: Discussed in the "Dumbing Down for the Filthy Casuals" episode.
- Strawman News Media: His distressingly accurate depiction of the news media as completely uninformed about video games, who react hysterically to any violence or sexuality in a game. Usually, the media operates under the assumption that video games are for kids, and therefore anyone who puts violence or sex in a game is trying to market sex and violence to kids.
- Streisand Effect: Discussed in "Corrupt, Censoring, Suicidal Indie Devs", where Jim brings up the attempted removal of reviews and commentaries done by him and Total Biscuit. Namely, how attempting to censor negative criticism on the Internet never, ever works, and that any indie publisher who tries it will quickly disappear forever under an Internet Counterattack of mass proportions. invoked
- They Changed It, Now It Sucks: With the success of Bravely Default, Square Enix admitted it made a mistake in trying to reinvent Final Fantasy instead of sticking with the traditional JRPG stylings that made it famous in the first place. In "An Industry Of Pitiful Cowards", Jim chastises the big publishers who change things with no evidence that there's anything broken.
- They Just Didn't Care: 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 three Silent Hill games in a month, and the atrocious handling of Silent Hill HD Collection.
- True Art Is Incomprehensible: Discussed in "Boring, Lazy Art Games". He feels that the term "art game" is starting to become a euphemism for "boring, pretentious pile of shit", citing examples such as Dear Esther and The Path which force the player through an interesting setting, but give them absolutely nothing to do.
- The Unapologetic: In "Tomopolgy Life", Jim brings up Nintendo's apology for not considering gay players when they put a marriage event in Tomodachi Life, and then apologized himself because the deadline for his videos meant he didn't have time to include it in the first video, and his rushing also misrepresented an aspect of the debate, painting Nintendo to be worse that they actually were. The rest of the video talks about this, how some people believe in never apologizing, compromising or admitting you're wrong; as some viewers saw Nintendo's reversal as a sign of weakness.
- Uncanny Valley: Called out Team Ninja, makers of the Dead or Alive games, for making (and then defending) "sexy" characters that he finds to be downright hideous due to this trope, particularly with their ludicrous Jiggle Physics.
- Values Dissonance: 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.
- Wants a Prize for Basic Decency: Jim was pissed off by gamers and journalists actually giving praise to game studios who decide to be less of a Jerk Ass than usual. In "The Trap of Gamer Gratitude", he points to EA adding microtransactions to Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare because people were having trouble unlocking things, pointing out the game was designed from the start to be tedious to play for free to coerce players into spending money.
- However, he actually does give Loadout praise for decency himself in the "Free to Wait" episode.
Jim: "That this game, a humble little game from a humble little studio can provide a genuinely quality shooter - and it really is a fucking good game - without perverting the free to play model, is worthy of applause. I mean, well, it shouldn't be worthy of applause, but in this world, unfortunately, it is."
- Widget Series: Jim's "Nintendo of America" episode is about how the titular company refuses to import niche Japanese games, despite the fact that said games usually sell more units in America than in Japan.
- You Keep Using That Word:
- "Bias" (See 8.8)
- 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.
- He directs this at Ubisoft at the end of Ubisoft - A Sad History of PC Failures. Ubisoft's constant use of "iconic" had gotten on his nerves, applying it to things like Aiden Pearce's attire or an Assassins Creed character's pocket-watch.
- In his INNOVATION- GAMING'S SNAKE OIL video, Jim stated that he feels that critics put higher stock into "innovation" over actual quality.