Lately, I've been having trouble with what I do. Generally, I sit down at the PC, grab a soda, and scour the netspace for news, just about every time I come home. That hasn't been going so well these last couple weeks, because I've decided to avoid certain news.
Rarely did I previously find it necessary to not read anything for fear of the mighty spoiler, but beginning with Okami, I found myself selectively avoiding specific information. The game just seemed so damn grand, that I didn't want to steal anything from that. I can say the same for Final Fantasy XII, although that one has been a little easier, because the story isn't really being divulged in any of the reviews.
I only know that bombs go BOOM.
It all culminates with The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, for which it seems I've been avoiding spoilers like the plague. I know what it seems everyone knows, from all the screenshots at the various trade shows, but this Friday the videos and impressions are going to drop from the 48 hour playtest that the majority of large news outlets are participating in. Matt Cassamasina, Jeremy Parish, and Rawmeat Cowboy from GoNintendo should all be writing up their impressions from this playtest, and those are three dudes who's opinions I regularly find myself indulging in. To not view any of these, is going to be what they'd call, "a test of my mettle." Although, I'm sure when they coined the term they meant it for much more laborious situations.
Regardless, I imagine I'll have to admit that I've become the 'Spoiler Granny' that I always feared. The real kicker is that it's working, and it's reminding how much I liked playing games when I was just a kid, with nothing else to do but play Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest for something like two solid days. It didn't so much matter to me that the game was terrible, I just had it to play, so I played it basically infinitely. That's a pretty amazing feeling, and all the news and impressions, reviews and previews, and other such hub-snubbery has, I think, stolen some of that away from me.
I played it to finish. TO. THE. TERRIBLE. FINISH.
Avoiding news made Okami not just an excellent game for me, but an experience. I conquered Nippon in 36 hours of playtime, all of which was achieved in less than two weeks. Maybe one week, but I can't seem to remember, it's all clouded with a slight haze of weepy glory. In the end, I wonder if I'll be able to maintain my newfound status of spoiler aversion, or will I bow to the gods of game previews.
EDIT: Funny now that I notice it, I called the one character in Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest 'TRISTRAM' for years. I always thought it sounded stupid. Now I know the source of said stupidity ...
I imagine it looked a little like this, you know, minus the dwarves, elves, and siberian tiger mounts.
Not that any of these guys could afford it. I'm sure they sold their souls to Blizzard long ago.
Sometime in the future I'll prepare a post with actual content. Well ... I might.
The song goes: "I did a bad, bad thing."
Matching outfits aren't necessary when you carry a meat cleaver in each hand.
More explanation is necessary, but I'll save it for a more fitting time. Consider this the relapse of an old addiction, and the prequel of a life wasted. Hopefully, this newer, more expanded drug won't be something I'm forced to start hiding the track marks for.
I ask in sincerity. I'm only curious, because I know at the beginning of this post, that I have none. My review of the Phantasy Star Universe Beta has been cancelled, well, actually I could say it was finished, and goes something like this:
Phantasy Star Universe is an MMO on the Xbox 360. It has a shite layout, and as an MMO, it isn't World of Warcraft, so to pay a monthly fee is like paying for a monthly delivery of ground beef, while your neighbors are receiving prime choice sirloin. (Sorry to use meat as the analogy there, but it worked ... sort of.) Understood?
My final impressions of Disgaea 2 and Lumines Live! are both still brewing. I could be at the finish of Disgaea 2, but there's no real way to tell. Considering I'm somewhere around 33 hours of playtime, I wouldn't be suprised if the game was, in fact, lying when it states I'm at the "Final Chapter." Lumines Live! is, in short, kicking my ass all over the place. I'll post some impressions after I'm better at the game, which hopefully is soon. Losing to puzzle games is disheartening.
Thanks Lumines, for ass-raping me so gently.
Also, I've taken the time to upload some of my compositions from my English 101 course to this blog. I like having everything chronicled in one place, so check them out if you must, but in truth, they're not that good. If anything, I'm particularly proud of the titles. I can craft some titles that steal the glances of many an onlooker. Now if only I could get them to be not quite so disappointed when the essay doesn't deliver. Read on if you dare:
The Game of Life
The Keyboard Zombies
A Frag Above The Rest
Star Wars 23: Indiana Jones vs. Superman
Before you mention the inconsistencies within the essays, note the disclaimer at the top of the page containing them.
Hmm, what else should be said? I demand everyone watches the new Stranglehold video at IGN. There are seven minutes of Chow Yun-Fat gameplay glory, all with commentary. This game just notched up about 10 marks on my must-buy list, thanks in particular to two things: 1. Doves included. 2. So Max Payne-y.
Chow Yun-Fat: "I come hard. So. Fucking. Hard."
Lastly, my interview with Orbital Media should be answered this week, and that is a feeling I can't seem to stop geeking over. My first interview with a developer, shit, I'm all journo-like. I'll post when it all comes through. They're also sending me Scurge:Hive and Juka and the Monophonic Menace to review, and that is a nice enough bounty.
While there was absolutely no cohesion to any of this, and definitely no point, I've presently written everything I can think of. So, Stan Lee knew best how to close 'em:
Just a note:
That should finally be it for layout changes, at least for a while. I'm happy with the just barely off-white background color, and the hotsauce images in my header and sidebar I stole politely from two separate wallpapers for Contact. I wish the header displayed as it should in IE, but well, IE is for hookers anyways. To further demonstrate that I don't much care, notice the mention under my Firefox banner in the sidebar. It says what it says, but it means something different. It means:
"This blog doesn't look right in anything but Firefox, because if you're using anything but Firefox ... you don't matter."
That's about everything I have to say. I thought about some final impressions on the Phantasy Star Universe Beta, or maybe one of the other posts I've been milling around for awhile now, but alas it is as I said. Quick and dirty.
There are a few reasons I'm more excited about owning an Xbox 360 than the Wii I'll be purchasing in a little more than a month. Sure, I'm not saying that I don't want a Wii, Zelda is going to have its hooks dug into me so deep that I might barely come out alive, but overall, the 360 has a lineup that is going to yield a full years worth of games that all scream next-gen. Obviously this begins with Gears of War in November, and while I'd like to say it ends with Halo 3, the truth is that it won't end. Games for next fall haven't even been announced, but somewhere in between we'll be looking at Mass Effect, Bioshock, Stranglehold, Too Human, Halo Wars, Lost Planet, etc. I can't remember any console that ever had such a strong lineup ... ever-like.
While the full-fledged releases are the steam behind the 360's engine barreling through the future, I'd like to think that Live Arcade is the coal. The XBLA is going to be delivering its own lineup of titles that, in my mind, are just as worthy of excitement as the console releases. I'll be the first to say that I don't get too thrilled about games like Pacman, Galaga, Frogger, and the more recent Dig Dug, on XBLA. I know they're novel and quick releases, but something just pisses me off about paying $5 for games from the early 80's. Shit, aren't these games in public domain? Sorry, but I refuse to spend $5 happily, on a game that was created when Nolan Bushnell was still the industries most famous figure. Luckily, there are a slew of titles coming to the Live Arcade that are slightly newer than the time of the dinosaurs. Some of the offerings that I'm looking forward to:
While I'm a firm hater of the price on games as old as my grandmother (Atari), games from my generation (NES & Beyond) are really loading up the Live Arcade.
Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3
It's Mortal Kombat. So that means it isn't going to have the worthwhile gameplay that Street Fighter did, but it's going to have lots of blood and lots of fun. My only worry is that there hasn't been any reveal of online modes for UMK3 yet, and if there isn't Xbox Live play, you can chalk this one up as worthless.
Contra & Super Contra
I might be wrong, but I'm almost sure they announced Contra and Super Contra both, which is awesome. These are the games I grew up on, and Xbox Live co-op play for Contra is like a dream. There are even updated visuals, but I can't guarantee they'll be mind-blowing stuff. Not like it matters.
Rush N' Attack
Not that I didn't play Contra, but when dudes were geeking out about it, I was trying to get them to play Rush N' Attack. Their loss was my gain, because this game rocks. I know this, because I remember how much I loved it, and I don't think I ever made it past the second level. If a game kicks your ass that much, and you still enjoy it, that = good game.
Symphony of the Night
I'd pay more for this release than any other XBLA title. Umm ... 'Nuff said.
Fatal Fury Special
So this probably isn't going to be as good as Street Fighter 2, but that doesn't mean it's bad. The more 2D fighters the better; I can't imagine any reason this won't be enjoyable. At least for a while.
While classics remade for XBLA claim many of the releases out there, new games are the real bread and butter here. Releases like Marble Blast Ultra and Geometry Wars tore up sales because of this, and some of these upcoming guys have the opportunity to do the same.
Assault Heroes is more of the kind of game I'd like to see on the XBLA. It has the next-gen visuals, but at the same time embraces the "old school" arcade gameplay of games like Geometry Wars. It's a great fit, and I can't wait to explore it.
I never got to play Lumines on the PSP, so I've been dieing to explore the game. Live Arcade delivers the opportunity, but the rumors of a shite pricing scheme are dessuading. We'll have to wait and see.
Alien Hominid was on my list of "To Buy" games from this generation for a long time, but it never made it into my hands. Thanks to XBLA it never will, but I'll still be playing it. The Behemoth makes their games with such a cartoony flair; I love it. They're also responsible for Castle Crashers below.
I don't really know how to define Space Giraffe apart from: WOW. I don't understand how it plays, what the scoring system is, and damn near anything else. I only know this video intrigues me, and the game was developed by the dude behind the crazy acid-trip visuals for the Xbox music player. For me, that's enough.
Castle Crashers is the second game that I think a picture just doesn't suffice. Watch the video, praise the beauty, then bow down and wait to buy the game. Next to SotN, Castle Crashers is way up there in terms of my level of anticipation.
Some simple equations here:
Smash Brothers - Cool Franchise Characters + XBLA + HD Visuals x Xbox Live gameplay = Absolutely cool, even though it's lacking the Link and Samus bit. Last minute video addition as well. Watch and enjoy!
Penny Arcade Adventures: On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness
I think this hasn't actually been confirmed for XBLA, but I'm holding out, and I would imagine there is a pretty good chance it will show up there. Sam & Max probably will as well. Hats off to episodic gaming on XBLA.
I'm sure I've forgotten some, but I think that conveys just how hotsauce the Live Arcade really is. There is real potential here, because unlike the virtual console, Live Arcade is merging new games and classics, and they're bringing cooperative gameplay to both. How excellent is that!
I really don't have any reason to make a post; I have nothing really worth conveying at this point. I keep planning to do a nice 'Top 10' I've been working on, about the manliest movies lines ever, but I never commit to filling out the list. I imagine now that I've mentioned it, I'll have to actually do it, sometime.
Well, apart from that, I've decided that I'm going to begin working on a new layout for this Blog, with some hip, flashy (but not Flash) visuals and the like. I'm still trying to decide whether I'll be heading down the fun and colorful road, or the sleek and sexy one. I'm not even sure if there is a happy medium.
Also, in terms of Blog-type stuff, I actually randomly rediscovered this. It's my first Blog, a LiveJournal, and WOW, just WOW. The stuff that I wrote back then, (this was years ago, years), is plain loony. I was sort of stupid, and crazy, but mostly stupid. At least I see some growth in myself since then, a little anyways.
I do, however, enjoy that I titled the blog 'The Time of No Reply', which is a nod to the Nick Drake song of the same name. A goddamned excellent song, one of my favorite in all time. As a matter fact, I'm going to buy that CD right now, because I never got the chance. If you check out this silly old Blog of mine, make sure to note that I was young and stupid, and undeniably swayed by teen angst. I don't think like that anymore, I promise.
It should be said, that in the photo I used for that Blog, I was wearing a wig, and a plastic Easter egg basket on my head. If you're not going to travel there, it looked a little something like this:
I don't have any idea why I did that. Absolutely no idea.
EDIT: Wow, reading through the interests that I listed on the ol' LiveJournal account was a romp. Some of the included:
- Chaos Theory (I actually don't even know how to define chaos theory, still.)
- French New-Wave (A type of film I might have seen once.)
- Satyagraha (Because I've peacefully protested ... what ???)
- The Illuminati (OK, they're cool, but an interest?)
I was an ass. I probably still am, but it's good to know that I'm less of a complete ass.
In a small a trek outside the sanctuary of my home, I found myself traveling in the wild outdoors. My goal was simple: Get the mail. However, the wild outdoors are an intimidating beast, and rarely do they allow a goal to be so easily achieved.
Along my journey, there were several things to avoid. The swirling hordes of gnats, moths, and other airborne pests, the natural landmines created by my furry companions, and also, well, cars. My mailbox is a kind of dangerous place. Regardless, the journey went without difficulty, that is until I was one turn of a handle from retreating back into my warm, protective womb. The wild outdoors knew to strike when I thought I had succeeded, and they knew to bring their champion. Holyshitimus Giantfuckingbuggae.
No less than a foot from the entry to my home, this hideous beast relaxed comfortably on the wall. Comfortably because, he (or she) knew that I could not pass. I could have made a sprint for the door, but the monster knew my intentions, and would have made quick work of me. Then, suprisingly, the scientist within me (there was one?) arose from the depths to let me know that I should chronicle this gross joke of Mother Nature. With nothing more than my cellphone I approached, ready to document my findings.
After a small series of pictures, I noticed the beast turned his formidable glare upon me, and it was then that I knew I was doomed. I pulled the cellphone away, but it was too late. The largest praying mantis science had ever recorded (and by science, I mean me) lunged itself at me in a spiraling death-lance maneuver. Approaching my face at nearly the speed of light I was left with little option but to engage the secret techniques of my ancestors.
Dropping the cellphone immediately, as the beast was inches from my face (or perhaps feet, I may have been too scared to notice), I engaged the shrill battlecry of the thousands of Mussers that came before me. Most men would shrivel in fear of this bellowing warrior call, while I suppose, a few others could possibly laugh at me.
With no option left to me, as the lunging mantis advanced, I took the only available course of action. I continued my battlecry, and swiftly began the rite of my people. The Hokey-Pokey. I danced in circles, flailing my arms, screaming at the beast, instilling the fear of God within it. The monster surely knew, I meant business. His lunge missed his mark, as I was so sure it would, and it mattered little. I had already began the hopping/falling/screaming that signaled the doom of, well, my manhood.
I had stated this was a scientific discovery, and while the fact that this praying mantis could very well have been the largest ever recorded could be considered a discovery, that is not the particular one of which I speak. No, today science discovered that Cody Musser, is, in fact, a giant pansy.