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Apr 20, 2016

018 - Oh No… BETA!

This week's show is all about betas. We look to have a good fruitful discussion about alphas, betas, server tests and the like. Maybe it'll even turn into a "de-beta" *groan*.

Show notes are available on

Please give us a rating or review on iTunes and in your favourite podcast application, it will really help us spread the word and make the show a success, and is a free, easy way to support the show!

Contact us on Twitter @zedtozed or email us at, we'd love to hear from you! Also check out the Zed to Zed Podcast Leaderboard on TrueAchievements and zzUrbanSpaceman's blog.

Opening/closing music: "Jive Bot" by Jake Kaufman from the game Mighty Switch Force! developed and published by WayForward Technologies

Break music: "Game Cool Dubstep Mode Logo" by Sparximer

Gamerscore Boot Camp music: "Tally Screen" by Jake Kaufman from the game Mighty Switch Force! developed and published by WayForward Technologies

Jo’s Review music: "Dalmation Station (It Gets Better Mix)" by Jake Kaufman from the game Mighty Switch Force! developed and published by WayForward Technologies

All audio production and podcast backend support provided by Tarragon Allen.

Show notes by Jo and Damien and Jo and Tarragon…  


Brandon Fream aka "Freamwhole" - TrueAchievements - Xbox

Tarragon Allen aka "zzUrbanSpaceman" - TrueAchievements - Xbox

Randy aka "Crandy" - TrueAchievements - Xbox

Also featuring:

Jo aka "angelsk" - TrueAchievements - Xbox

0:00:00 - Intro

0:09:16 - Housekeeping

  • What do you think makes more sense: 'Fream Early Access' or 'Tarragame Preview Program'?
  • Great Random To-Do List (beta) - need some testers - sign up on the Leaderboard (exclusive): Zed to Zed Presents: The Random To Do List (Beta)
  • Dark Souls Fream-cast - April 23rd 10PM Central Time (Zed to Zed Twitch Channel)
  • Achievement Hound Community Show #100 featuring Fream - available to download now (Tarragon was on episode #98)
  • Game Trials you can earn achievements (incomplete, via Sinacide), also thanks to griffey95. Send the Z2Z crew your messages.
  • PSA: Dirt 3 VIP Pass is currently free (was GwG)
  • Donations of game codes from WaterDrip37 and BuckMarley155, thank you
  • Lots of codes to give away, keep eyes peeled on our Twitter feed

0:17:24 - Backlog and Recap

  • Tarragon
    • Elite: Dangerous
    • ZHEROS (local co-op) - non-stacking achievements, *boo*
    • Threes!
    • Tachyon Project
    • Whispering Willows
    • Elite: Dangerous!
    • Blast 'Em Bunnies
    • Project Spark
    • Elite: Dangerous (GRAW in space, Destiny with Spaceships)
  • Crandy
    • Not GRAW
    • Killer Instinct (Ranked matches)
    • Red Faction Guerilla (completion)
    • Perfect Dark Zero
    • Universe at War: Earth Assault
    • Pool Pro Online 3
  • Fream
    • Destiny (new patch) - you need to sleep!
    • Ben 10: Rise Of Hex (speed run walkthrough?)
    • Project Spark
    • Quantum Break
    • Stikbold (only the first player gets achievements, *boo*)

0:45:11 - Listener Feedback

  • Thanks to MattQuin89, KaibaChaos, angelsk, Supernova x360a, NBA Kirkland, Big Ell, KinectKid333, Planting42, Lucky32468, Seb/The Nyghty, McLovin Legend, Spazpol, Facial la Fleur, HandyDarkness, 1updan, James Vexed, SaucySlingo, smrnov
  • Appropriate age to start on TA?
  • Catch the achievement hunter bug when first visit TA.
  • 100k nice milestone, top 10% (ish) on TA
  • Community banter is good!
  • You know you're addicted to gamerscore when you play out your living room to fit Kinect when you move house :)
  • Runescape in space
  • Crandy has a problem. 365 days of play time on Runescape
  • *tongue-face*
  • This makes no sense. I am too old to have played Runescape.
  • Crandy's 99s
    • Attack
    • Constitution
    • Strength
    • Smithing
    • Defense
    • Herb Law
    • Ranged
    • Thieving
    • Cooking
    • Prayer
    • Crafting
    • Fire Making
    • Magic
    • Fletching
    • Wood Cutting
    • Farming
    • Construction
    • Summoning
  • Threes Solver - you need to build it - watch this space
  • Quantum Break - approach, start it on Hard, no guides (collectibles are easy)
  • KinectKid333 - Crandy, how do you make the MIDI Macros?
    • To be discussed in detail in a later episode.
  • Lucky34268 - How to clean up 0GS games like on the xbox 360?
  • MattQuin89 - Finally heard my shout-out.  What are your favorite ID@Xbox title? Mine is
  • Seb/The Nyghty: Cross-play concerns
    • Some games (FPS) PC may be unfair against console gamers.
    • Concerns about mods.
    • Real time strategy (RTS) are just bad on console (Tarragon + Randy agree)
  • Christian Allen feedback:
    • McLovin Legend: Best interview so far. Been waiting to see which one of you would swear first :) [It was Brandon]
    • Spazpol: listening to the Christian Allen interview podcast at 15,000 feet!  Awesome in flight entertainment. [Don’t die on your race BTW]
    • Facial: Takedown: Red Sabre game on the grounds that he seems like a likable dude.
  • HandyDarkness: Wife is home and OK.  Suggests having a 4th person on standby to avoid 2 host shows.
  • Seb/The Nyghty: Facebook vs Twitter users [Randy needs to ask his mom to take off the parental controls]
  • Daniel Proulx @1updan: 3 hour show length is good.
  • SaucySlingo & Smrnov: Ducks vs horses.  The debate continues.
  • McLovin Legend: Randy needs a rant section

1:53:49 - News

1:57:34 - Talking Zeds: Beta Season

  • Oh No... BETA!!
  • Beta Release Schedule from MajorNelson
  • If it's broken, it's a Beta.
  • Usually; beta = Software that is feature complete but known to be buggy (beta to iron out the rest of the bugs). With games it's more of a stress test
  • Beta = a good way to cancel pre-orders :)
  • Rainbow 6 Siege beta
  • Gears of War Ultimate edition
  • Evolve
  • Homefront Revolution
  • DOOM - plays like Quake, not old Doom.
    • Leaderboard achievements like Quake 4? Hopefully not.
    • Season Pass - Crandy rant
  • Exclusivity from a beta? e.g Sonic 2 Beta cartridge (this is a promo copy, not a beta)
  • Mega Hype Train *choo choo*
  • "Betas are the problem of the people who play them" - Crandy
  • DOOM - If the game is coming out in 2 weeks, it's already printed…. So the demo isn't really going to change any features.  This is where the stress test comes in, it's tweaking the servers pre-launch. And hopefully any game-breaking bugs.
  • Destiny beta - balancing exercise in multiplayer
  • Halo 5 - missing some very key user interface pieces… this is more of an alpha
  • Huge response from the community on betas
  • McLovin Legend: Achievements? No, some demos do (as discussed) - but not betas.
    • Limits play time because no achievements :)  
    • We, as a community, do have bad habits when it comes to games that don't have achievements.
    • Preview program: Elite Dangerous, Arc, Solus Project
    • "We" are backlog junkies
    • Sometimes you can get perks in the preview/ beta releases
  • LordChabelo13: Waste of time for Achievement Hunters
  • AHP TheNyghty: Preview program, still in active development (Arc, DayZ)
    • Dev state not a bad thing
    • Minecraft - for years was essentially an alpha/ beta
    • More involved when in active development
    • 3 years is not long for a large game (e.g: Elite Dangerous) - you are seeing more of the development time than with triple As
    • People yelling at clouds
  • Kez001: Avoid betas…. Or maybe keep playing if they convince you not to buy games. Only play betas for games you are interested in.
  • Decoy1982: Wizards who come from the moon
  • spankyNspronkle: Battleborn
  • MightyMango: Why bother doing a beta if retail release is borked?
  • Facial la Fleur has a good response here.
    • Where do you go to report bugs? Sometimes not obvious…. Or they're not looking for you to find bugs.
    • PvZ:GW2 beta had a really good forum for reporting bugs (Jo)
    • Time commitment
  • Dead Rising Demo
  • Term "Beta" is a marketing tool (open vs closed beta)
  • Different expectations
  • Tons of people bought Crackdown for Halo 3 beta - balance testing and marketing… something has to be exclusive
  • Abundant codes are annoying
  • Bungie good with communication and betas
  • Big Ell: Betamax and LaserDisc

2:52:33 - Bootcamp: GRAW

  • Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter
  • Not for completionists!
  • Cheats do not void single player achievements
  • 550 GamerScore available fairly easily
  • Avoid the multiplayer if you don’t like odd-achievement values
  • Multiplayer can mostly be done split-screen

2:55:16 - Jo’s Reviews: Final Fantasy XV

3:02:28 - Knobs and Discos

  • FIFA Street (2012): Friendly Publicity fixed
  • Project Spark (both versions):
    • Conker and Seph level 10 and level 20 achievements were broken for ages but have been modified by the developer - new criteria is based on number of times played through Crossroads, e.g. level 10 = play through Crossroads 10 times.
    • Rumours the Freamer (log in each day) achievements are buggy and not unlocking or updating progress - unconfirmed at this stage
    • Project Spark developer appears to be winding down, if you want to get the most of out Spark now is the time to do it!
  • Pure Pool: Maximum Break is fixed
  • Rise of the Tomb Raider (360): Witch Trials - currently unobtainable
  • Total Conquest (both versions) - level 30 achievement popped for someone at level 100, speculation is that the level 100 achievement may unlock at a higher level again. Huge grind to get there though.
  • Panzer Geekz: We Hear You was buggy but now fixed - thanks to Montana97 for the tip and a shout out to the #forgottengladiators of the Potentially Endless Bean Dive

3:13:16 - Game Delays and Backwards Compatibility

  • New to BC:
    • Garou: Mark Of The Wolves
    • Duke Nukem: Manhattan Project
    • Sonic: The Fighters
    • DOOM 3
    • Monaco: What's Yours Is Mine
    • (sort of new) Lego Batman JP
  • Lego Batman JP - a confirmed sighting of the non-working version in Japanese consoles? Thanks Sinacide for the tip.

3:16:03 - Zombie News

3:18:07 - Giveaway Time!

  • Congratulations! Alan Wake: American Nightmare code winners:
    • Facial La Fleur
    • @ShelbyGT5252

3:19:32 - Outro

  • Elite Dangerous
  • Thanks for all of your feedback! Sorry if we missed you.
  • Freamwhole is now a member of the Community Events Team on TrueAchievements. Sell out.


Glossary of Xbox Gamerscore and achievement jargon and terms: