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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Warmastered Editon was pretty good...

"Even my SCABS have SKULLS."- Death after 3 drinks.

...but The Deathinitive Edition



is






stunning.



Great art direction always ages well but, damn, I didn't think they could make Death's armor look that good. The best part of this game was the loot design. Every piece of loot from white to orange looked at least interesting enough to try on once. Most games treat everything under blue rarity as the garbage it is, but Vigil cared. They cared so damn much. I'm glad to see the series get one more shot, even gladder to see one of my all time favorite games get such a respectful face lift.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

American Gods: A second course of Hannibal.



It's obvious from the first episode that American Gods is a direct transplant of everyone that worked on Hannibal. The most horrifically gorgeous show ever made. Because of that alone I'm gonna be there to the bitter end. No other show on the air looks or sounds anything like this, like classic Italian horror with a budget and CGI.

The same dream logic and floaty dialogue usually fits Gaiman's words like a glove, in fact it's getting hard to tell what's old and what's new. Mr. Nancy's fiery new sermon is a welcome change seeing as Gaiman (a brit) seemed to not want to talk about the Black American experience too much. Understandably.  But it's a little stagey at times, fine for the page but too flowery and broad for small talk on a long car trip.  Let's just say sometimes Mr. Wednesday comes off as more a weird asshole than a brilliant con man. Though he is certainly both.

Shadow's a lot more of a character now too, though how much of that has to do with Ricky Whittle's solid acting chops is again, unclear. He seems to have a shorter fuse and is much less passive and/or gullible than before. Though It's been 10-12 years since I read the book, it could actually be much better than I remember. I had awful taste back then.

This is worth watching if you ever enjoyed Gaiman, Hannibal, Pushing Daisies, or Deadwood. You are going to LOVE IT. The cool kids aren't going to shut up about it anytime soon either


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Last political post for a while, pinky swearzies.


Obama has the ability to call someone a motherf**ker using only his posture.

In light of recent events, such as the AP reporting the Trump transition team illegally moved sensitive material the second they got their hands on it, the Wall Street Journal reporting that Putin personally signed off on payments to Trump hotels, and the fun (though possibly spurious) conspiracy chatter about the US Marshal service arresting sitting members of the House, I'd say it's time to look back to the last administration.

The story behind this picture beguiled me for months and I feel like I don't know much more than a quarter of it so far. But all that does explain why he looked so pissed here... and why he looked so relaxed on vacation.

He may have despised Hillary to an unhealthy degree, but he wouldn't do Barry like that.


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Deputy US Marshal!


Just thought I'd reminisce about how much I loved Justified. The US Marshal service is on my mind tonight for some reason....


Sunday, May 14, 2017

Many people are saying that a sealed indictment has been issued for Donald Trump.

...but her emails.

According to journalists Louise Mensch and Claude Taylor, who correctly predicted the FBI raid and FISA court proceedings 3 weeks ago, are now saying that Trump ceased to be President on may 9th. Senator Orrin Hatch has received security briefings and is the next president of the United States.

Is this bullshit? I don't know, if not then I love the way they lie to me.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

What the sh*t, Barry?!


Archer Dreamland has been a damn good return to form after two downright mediocre seasons. Everyone has slightly new roles and motivation that changes things just enough to feel new again. Yet exactly the same, somehow.

 Though, I was worried why new Barry had to become a cyborg again. This episode was was why. Jesus Christ, someone on the writing staff had to have been bingeing Hannibal. That was just... haunting.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Goggins-Watch 2017

They really nailed the jawline...

Walton Goggins is center square in my favorite character actor bingo card. With Benedict Wong as your older brother and Goggins as a shady lab rat there is some damn good talent behind the mic. Shame the dialogue isn't better, still a firm step up from Dishonored 2.



Friday, May 5, 2017

Prey reaches the next level of interactive imersion.



Because as far as I know, no other video game character has been proven to sleep in socks and boxers. I don't know about the rest of you guys, but personally I've never felt closer to a player avatar in my entire life. Morgan Wu is my now my guiding light. My digital north star.

F**king glorious.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAA.....




...AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!

I honestly, hand to god, did NOT think this would ever happen. Darksiders 3! Holy sweet mother of Moses. It looks good, like it has a current gen budget behind it. The cartoony yet bloody ascetic is still in tact and the dialogue is still juuuuuust above average for a pulpy sword'n'sorcery affair. Plus they went with the sole female member of the horsepersons instead of the dude with all the guns. Nicely done... though the heels are a bit much.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Fargo's still got it.



There has to be a point where the overall quality of TV needs to sink. An upcoming writer's strike may do just that, but I didn't think Fargo could still be this good. Stunt casting Ewan Mcgregor as twins is usually a red flag for lazy writing but the premise this year is pretty damn awesome. The two halves of the Stussy brothers are on either side of the proverbial tracks. One stuck in a dead end job as a parole officer, the other is the parking lot king of Minnesota. They both have ridiculously intricate driving forces in their lives that somehow fit great together. Ray wants to steal a rare stamp from Emmit so he can buy into a high roller Bridge tournament. Emmit wants the Russian mob to stop politely and methodically taking over his company.

This show is worth it for David Thewlis's English accented Russian mobster alone. He somehow manages to be nonchalantly terrifying. Carrie Coon is the next permutation of the single parent cop trope this show is so good at. I'd be upset at the repetition if they didn't do such a great job at keeping it fresh. She's no super cop and only has one other person in her department and that department is run out of the library. This is the show's secret sauce. Making painful realities quietly hilarious.

At this point in American Horror Story it had already flown off the rails. While I'm not sure it's the best season yet I can say for certain that it's the best anthology show so far. And that ain't nuthin'.

He makes his own goddamn teeth a character. I mean, his face and his teeth are giving dueling performances.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Late Night Search Hole:

Bog Butter.
That up there is a crazy old husk of butter. This is how the English/Scottish made it since at least the 6th century. They'd bury dairy product slurry in a wooden vessel deep in a peat bog. But the jury's out on why they made it that way. It doesn't have any salt and isn't very nutritious. I lean toward the idea it was for security reasons. A "go bag" if you will, in case of emergency.

Anywho, that's how I spent the last 2 hours. What's new with you guys?


Saturday, April 22, 2017

A Post about another Post


http://static.tumblr.com/ad6247ea475fb1c569e2fe199288bfc8/vmvzpa5/rtYoavsv1/tumblr_static_eonx7upnbhw8cg4skw8sckk4k.png
Democracy Dies in Darkness
       

I finally got a subscription. One, their comment sections are incredible reads. Two, when the FBI finishes their investigation I want court side seats. I honestly can't think of a better way to spend my money.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Digging up Cathy.




Got a true crime itch that needs scratch'n?  Netflix has got your back with this year's answer to Making A Murderer. It looks amazing. Think Spotlight but with nun murder. Wait... May 19th? Come on, Netflix. You know I can't curse in an article about nun murder!

Well damn, that was actually worth 7 bucks.

It name checks a song that isn't in it! Good thing I was sick of it...

Cards on the table, the school uniform from Persona 4 is the closest I've ever gotten to actually wanting to cosplay. There's a reasonably cheap costume for sale on etsy and I'm going to break down and get it eventually. Tell everyone at a future Halloween party that aren't in the know I'm a Japanese school boy. That might get a laugh or 2.

But either way, as great as Persona 5 is, P4 was just a smidge better and after putting in 70 hours to finish her up; I needed a fresh coat of paint on my crew to deal with a new game +. The p4 costume pack sounded lovely, though $7 was a little steep. But I got some neat XP boosting accessories and apparently the battle music and victory jingle from 4 carry over. If I'm being honest I love reach out to the truth but I wouldn't be heartbroken if I never heard it again.

Except that's not what I got, it's some hot new sh*t from the vita remake I'd never heard before. F**ck it's so good, worth every damn penny.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Where have I been?



Welp... I've been doing a lot more writing vs blogging. See, when I'm not procrastinating on my blog I'm procrastinating on the 3 and 1/2'ish things I'm kinda sorta noveling. Not to worry, I've finally seen What we do in the Shadows and I'm just about done with Persona 5 (dropped it like a stone for a few days, got super burnt out). So blogging is incoming. And I'm still on a podcast!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Slow news day, huh?



Apropos of nothing and no one, I'll put up this scene from a fun little movie with a great message that's somehow still relevant today: Get Carter.


We need to talk about P5's menus.

http://i.imgur.com/0i5hUax.gif

The user interface is the part of the game you're going to look at the most. You'd think there'd be an arms race in the industry to make the best and most interesting UI possible. Atlus seems to be the only studio who gives a damn. Lord do they give a damn.

Look what the internet can do with it:



 
For 14 hours  Imgur isn't going to know what hit it...

Monday, April 10, 2017

That. Little. Sh*t!

What have ye done?!


I'm sure Mike Fahey's son is a sweet boy. No one is abdicating for corporal punishment here. No one is saying that. But good people can be responsible for monstrous things. Things like deleting a 40 hour Persona 5 save. That sucks Mike. That sucks times a million. I also like to point out there's a cloud save option and I suggest ya'll use it!


Sunday, April 9, 2017

P5 is... ok, I guess.



Persona 5's good. Pretty good, even. Good enough so that the near decade wait was worth it. I'm not saying you need to rush out and buy it, but there is a nice bonsai-like feeling tending to the day to day grind of being a japaneese teenag-... what the hell do you mean it's been 6 days?

6 days?! Then why does it feel like I've just started?! This game is the closest thing humanity has to a f**king time machine



Wednesday, April 5, 2017

9 and 1/2 years later...



...and we have a new persona game! I broke a week long solemn vow not to buy it until I finished Horizon. But I hit a really good stopping point just after midnight on tuesday . What was I supposed to do? Respect Chance's friendship?! Probably.

Though I'd feel worse about it if it wasn't so. Damn. Magnificently Japanese.


Monday, April 3, 2017

What the hell, April Fools?!

This is why reddit won't shut up about szechuan sauce.

Sometime 12 years ago April Fools must have became a chapter in a universal MBA text book. Since then, every marketing department across the world tries to do... something on April 1st. Most years I don't mind being burned a little but this time April Fools hurt me. Real bad.

The season premiere of Rick and Morty came and went while I slept off a 14 hour shift. There is nowhere I can legally watch it for at least a week. It's been almost 2 years since the last season ended and now my corporeal  shell can no longer contain my rage. That's f**ked, AF. That's f**ked to the nth degree. You've wounded me. I don't think we can be friends anymore.


Friday, March 31, 2017

I've been distracted.



The world of entertainment has so much to talk about right now, but I find myself silent. Because it's raining dropped shoes in the world of politics. Kinda like how John McCain said it would. We haven't had a political scandal like this in decades and the journalist in me can't get enough of it. I'm just endlessly refreshing Politico over here.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Andromeda continues to impress and vex in equal measure.



Just when I think I'm falling in love with Andromeda it does something stupid like make a character say "let's get out of here" or "we got company." Screen writing 101 should have made those radioactive to a writer worth half a damn. But then I go on Drak's loyalty mission where we get into a spectacularly bro-mantic chase for a stolen seed vault and I forget it's flaws for a while. It even gave me my favorite ME gun yet, a space age revolver that just melts my heart. Accurate enough for off hand head shots yet still decent at long range with a scope. Perfect for sniping and close range "where the f**k did you come from?!" moments. So I basically use it all the time.

Can't say for sure whether everyone should play this eventually, but $60 isn't worth it for most of you. Because most of you hated the first ME. Unless sci-fi western stuff is as much your thing as it is mine.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Your emails are all pretty funny.




Good on you, Andromeda.You're really no where near as bad as I feared. Doomed to be the red headed step child of the Bioware library, but still genuinely fun. Also thanks for getting DA2 out of the dog house, it never deserved the rap it got. Avaline forever!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

ME:Andromeda is... sumthin'.

'Scuse me for Goldbluming but this game is just... ummmmm... well, yeah.


I've gone through some mental gymnastics to appreciate Andromeda. I'm pretending this came out two years after ME3 and I've put off buying it until they remastered it. Because this couldn't possibly have been in development for 6 years. Because that would be a goddamned tragedy.

Everything you've heard about the first hour or two is true. ME's dialogue wasn't exactly Mamet* at the best of times, yet this manages to be a pale imitation of that. I'm still in, though. There's no question it's the worst cast in the series but that's still good enough. At least for me... at least for now.

There is still one amazing thing Andromeda's got that the originals don't have and that thing is jetpack fights. 

Motherf*&%ing Jetpack Fights. That is all.


*look how crazy young Spacey is! I bet the guy passed for 50 in his 30's

Monday, March 20, 2017

I'll buy Mass Effect Andromeda... for the blog.


For 7 years I've never hesitated to buy a Bioware game. Not even for a second. Yes, ME3 and I had irreconcilable differences. Sure, Inquisition ultimately drowned in a sea of it's own half baked "content". But Bioware has never hit below an 8/10 for me. Andromeda looks poised to break that streak.

It looks... rough. Like a cheap straight to video spin off of a once great series. Reviews are harsh. Polygon literally called it "a total goddamned mess." I do not wish to play it at launch as I'm already knee deep in Horizon. While it's pretty bland in the story department, it's refreshingly confidant and reeeeeaaaaalllllly pretty. Andromeda is none of those things, but I need to know. I need to know how far a great studio has fallen, if at all. The blog and the podcast deserve to know too. Hope tips are good next week.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Night in the Woods Review: Rite of Possum Springs.


Do you ever get the feeling that something was made just for you? Something that seems to take your musings on fear, insecurity, and loathing and makes them funnier than they have any right to be? Night in the Woods is a watershed moment in gaming. It's almost like I've been waiting for something like this since 1996. I don't want to oversell it, but there is a very good reason it has a 10/10 on steam reviews. That reason is I have NEVER played a game this well written. I just want to shout superlatives from the rooftops now, so here we go.

People may argue that NITW is visual novel, that it's not interactive enough, that it's forced ending robs it of any lasting impact. You may feel like your time in Possum Springs is "wasted" and there are solid arguments for calling this a flash in the pan. I'll even fess up that the final act is a rushed misstep. But I say it's all about the journey. I can only speak to my own experience and my own experience was a goddamn trip, man.

The story of Night in the Woods is a new one, though painfully familiar to anyone in their 20's. Mae is a cat that was too anxious and depressed to finish college and chose to move back home with her parents while she figures out what to do next. All day every day she hops around town meeting up with her friends at their workplaces, walking on power lines, getting heckled by old neighbors, anything to drown out her creeping feelings of failure and inadequacy.

This shouldn't be anything but a stone cold bummer. So why did it make me laugh out loud more than any game I've ever played? I'll give you a hint, because this is the seminal creative text of my generation. It earns that title by understanding that everyday life can be funny or sad and is routinely both at once. This is the millennial tragedy writ small and it. Is. Hilarious

Punch lines are set up that don't pay off for hours. There are quick 30 second conversations with your mother that manage to be emotional roller coasters. There's a scene in which you start a knife fight with your best friend and it's not a mellow dramatic showdown. It's just some dumb fun you're both having. 

When NITW has characters read poetry, it's actually poetic. When you think the story is going to point towards a happy ending for anyone, a barbed anecdote about their past suddenly makes it impossible. Addiction, abuse, loss, and irrational self destruction are given a grace and humor that escapes not just most games, but a lot of writing in general. No, really. Stephen King couldn't pull off characters this three-dimensional or fun to save his life and remember I warned ya'll about the superlatives.


The one aspect that falls short is it's attempt at cosmic horror. That's kinda my wheelhouse and if you came to play you best not give me the ending to American Gods (but with a mine this time instead of a lake). How is it that in a game about a sad small town the ghostly kidnapper manages to be the least interesting thing about it? It also comes perilously close to having the villain be a problem that solves itself and for a game that's so good at dialogue and characters... that's a stark rookie mistake.

So I'd say take your time. Talk to everyone. Climb the buildings. Go to Church. Just fall in love with Possum Springs and take the ghost hunt with a grain of salt. This is just the first project from these guys and they've already thrown down the gauntlet for anyone trying to tell stories through games. If you can't see that this is now the high water mark then you aren't paying close enough attention.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

RayBans, Anyone?





My twitter got hacked for the very first time. Chance pointed it out to me as well as making me this lovely screen grab. It's like a magic eye poster but with words. The harder I try to read it, the less it makes sense. So thank you twitter bot, thank you for being a confounding word salad.


Monday, March 13, 2017

Day in the Life.


A woman who has been a tenant for 5 years got a package this morning and asked if I was "new." I said that I had been here for a year and a half. She then said I didn't have to be so rude about it and I wanted to scream "I wasn't the first 2 times we had this conversation!!!!"


Saturday, March 11, 2017

In which I still jabber on about Hollow Knight:



You can tell a lot about a game by it's bestiary. Did the designers bother to write a story for their enemies or did they just make a bunch of monsters that looked cool? There's nothing wrong with either approach but I love it when they try. All these enemies speak in a Japanese like gibberish and it's charming as all f**k. So you know I'm going to try to kill enough of them to see what the game's sociopathic hunter god thinks of them. Some are not worthy, some are delicious, and some are painful reminders of the fall of the Hollow Nest.

For a game obstinately aimed at children (that's still pretty damn hard) it's strange how much of the spirit of Dark Souls translates to a G rating. Oh, and you need to buy it. Hardly anyone is playing it and THAT I cannot abide.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Upon further review, Hollow Knight is in fact "The Goods."




Just when I thought my indy thirst was slaked by Night in the Wood's adorable (yet crushing) small town ennui, Hollow Knight done gone swept me off my feet. I haven't played a good metriodvania in a crazy long time so I was going to be an easy mark to begin with. I didn't expect to see greatness in Hollow Knight, which was one of my first mistakes.

It begins deathly simple with light platforming and light combat. Hop on these ledges, avoid those spikes, slash them earwigs, and so forth. Every platforming segment is straightforward and every enemy dies in 3 or fewer hits. But then I got lost. For a solid hour. I found a mapmaker and thought, "great, now I can see where I haven't been!" but it wasn't a modern video game map. It didn't have greyed out areas or a pin where the player was standing. It was inert and un helpful. With it's hand drawn animation and cutesy gibberish for dialogue I had falsely assumed I'd get more hand holding. Come to think of it, it never came close to holding my hand at all. The mapmaker told me to speak with his wife in town for further assistance and the game made me turn out my wallet for the stuff that I was complaining about earlier.

So already it was making me pay for things I had took for granted and it was about to kick my ass. I found the first boss and was not disappointed. I finally died which means you loose all your cash (saw that coming) but you also loose your healing magic (well...sh*t) and you have to fight the ghost of your corpse to get it all back (rad as hell). Games that are this fun to play, that are this challenging, that are this beautiful, and this charming do not come around every day. I feel bad for bloodstained right now. I honestly don't know how they can follow this even if they have till 2018.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Hollow Knight seems legit.

http://i.imgur.com/SETUnxu.gif

You want to get my attention, be a metriodvania. You want me to throw money at you, show me your map in the trailer. This certainly looks like the goods. Deep combat, lovely art style, reviews that boast 30 hours or so. That's great, I'm sure I'll probably break down and buy it this weekend. Which is actually today. Hooray service industry!

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Legion is the weirdest show since The Prisoner.

So... did Noah Hawley help an FX executive bury a body? Because that's the only scenario in which this show gets made.

This isn't something networks make anymore and when they did the best you could hope for was the production value of a black box theater. At first I thought the pilot was going to be the artsy outlier that transitions into the more expected X-Men vs the world scenario. That... did not happen. If anything the pilot was holding back. This show was getting away with murder before we got to the astral projection of Jemaine Clement doing beat poetry. My buddy who was chomping at the bit to see a big budget X-Men series enjoyed it but gave me a  "Well... that was not... yep." when I asked what he liked about.

That means this is probably going to be a mini series. A second season would be great but I'm not fooling myself into thinking this is something the fans want. This is something I want and I'm insufferable. This is a Kubrickian Twin Peaks with super powers and I can't stop watching it. The dream like dialogue, the anachronistic wardrobe/sets, the torture sequences that are actually torturous, I could go on. This show is the best kind of crazy because it knows how ridiculous it looks (remember Jemaine Clement?) and it doesn't give a good god damn what you think. At the same time it respects the pain of mental health issues and engenders respect for schizophrenia while being  honest about what David has done wrong.

Or you can just tune all that out and treat it like a straight forward psychological thriller. You'd miss out on about 2/3rd's of it's depth, but I wouldn't blame anyone showing up solely for the monsters. The world's angriest boy in the world sure looks like the nightmares I used to have as a 6 year old. And that's awesome.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Night in the Woods soundtrack rulz, OK?!!!



Cards on the table, I'm worried that nitw isn't anywhere near the top sales on steam. I'm worried it'll get labeled hipster trash and get lost in the shadow of Horizon: Zero Dawn. Which no matter how good that game may be, I had to use that garbage title to describe it. So nobody wins. We also desperately need to lay off the colons in game titles.

So to get some of you readers in the mood, listen to the music. It's soundtrack helped garden state get a foothold on pop culture and this is a much better written story than that:








That last 2 are covers, but still.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

CRISPR.


In light of current events, it's easy to think we're slipping into an age of ignorance. I purpose we are actually in an age of mad science! Well not really, but lets just say Gattaca is eerily close to our own reality right now. The gist is someone found the genes of a virus inside of a germ, which is crazy. The theory was floated that this is a primitive defense mechanism inside the germ and if RNA was written with a specific spacer sequence they could literally rewrite the germ's genes.

This scales up. Way up. Like China has already undergone trials on human embryos and it wasn't a complete disaster. We possess the ability to rewrite genetics. We've had this for months and I'm just hearing about it now. Guys! we could feasibly create a strain of malaria free mosquitoes and... I just realized this is how every post-apocalypse story starts. Still, nothing ventured.



Saturday, February 25, 2017

But it's not even my birthday...

Yay, libertarianism. yay.

Chance really likes Night in the Woods. So much so he gifted me a copy saying it had me written all over it. This guy. This guy gets me. I'm in love with the art style and in awe of the dialogue. It hides tremendously depressing details in light hearted, damn funny, small talk. I've seen some critics complain this game outstays it's welcome, but I don't know how that's possible. I want to frikkin' live there. In a lot of ways I already do.

The maladies of the rust belt have a ton in common old southern coal mining towns. I'm really impressed at how light this game is able to make the crushing depression bearing down on everyone stuck in Possum Springs. Also fun fact, a lot of working class background characters have blood shot eyes. They're high on Oxycontin. Bravo, night on the woods. Bravo.


Wednesday, February 22, 2017

...Neat!


Samurai Jack's coming back. To Adult Swim. Which I find odd for a couple reasons, the saddest of which is that kids 12 years later still aren't that into this show. I mean, of all the CN shows that desperately needed a second chance this was it. Now they have something to show for it:


All right! That's... pretty much the same show, except with a gun. But that gun still makes pew pew laser sounds so that's still pure Tartakovsky. A gritty reboot of Samurai Jack isn't Samurai Jack and I'm realived they arn't going in that direction. At least not too much. Looks like they're going for PG-13 light, which I think is the right choice. In a word, I'm glad this is still for kids. Cept' kids these days watch Game of Thrones and have seen Fury Road so... this can only improve the fight scenes.