Phil's Newsletter #38

Three men make a tiger

Previously on Phil’s Newsletter: I Built A Tiny Keyboard

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This week’s guest on OpenCV Weekly Webinar, the show I moderate every Thursday morning, was Jack Morrison of Scythe Robotics. They just raised $13.8 million for their autonomous lawn care system. It was good to catch up with another old co-worker of mine from my days at Occipital.

Music Drop: RetroStrange Mixtape Vol. 1 (Cat. No. EF-218)

The big news over here this week is I finally got around to releasing the RetroStrange Mixtape Volume 1, a collaboration with John Inacay who did the theme music for RetroStrange Movie Night. It’s got both of John’s Movie Night themes, plus several tracks from yours truly (some from my video games) and some of the station identification sounds from LOFI SCIFI, our 24/7 streaming old time radio channel.

The album is $7 on Bandcamp, but my Patrons and paid Newsletter subscribers get it for free. If you’re a paid subscriber, be on the lookout for a download link soon.

This makes two months in a row that I’ve “released an album.” What secrets does August hold?

Sticks & Fists take on Knights of the Round + King of Dragons

We had to make up for last week’s failure to launch, so Sticks & Fists played TWO games this week on Twitch. Once I get my shit together it’ll be on my YouTube channel, too.

I was a little light on my research this time, so there wasn't a whole lot of history talk on this one. We did whoop some serious ass in a couple of Capcom arcade beat ‘em ups, though: Knights of the Round and The King of Dragons, both originally released in 1991 for the Arcade and in 2018 as part of the Capcom Beat ‘em Up Bundle for Switch. The music in both games feels pretty good- very SC-88.

It’s really interesting to me to see what developers were prioritizing in 1991- the level end screens are basically programmer art, for example, and will just smash-pause whatever is on screen before sending you on to the next stage.

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Studio Upgrades

The Wizard Tower welcomed some new production equipment this week: The BOSS DS-1 distortion pedal, the BOSS TR-2 tremolo effect, the BOSS RV-6 reverb pedal, and a Teenage Engineering PO-14 (pictured above). Take my credit card away please.

We’ve got a pretty sick pedal selection over here these days. The DS-1 and the TR-2 in particular sound great together, with the right settings on my ASAT it’s got just the right kind of crunch and shimmer. Expect more music-like noises from me soon with these.

Phil’s Good Links

I know what you’re really here for.

That is all from me, this week. For now anyway. I am still coming in and out of some pretty bad Brain Worms the last few weeks. Sometimes the best you can do is lay down for awhile and let it pass. Ain’t no use gnashing your teeth at yourself. You’re probably already doing your best.

— Phil

Wizard Tower Gamma, South of Market, San Francisco, California, United States of America, Earth