seiberwing: (Notice Me)
Note: This was actually written a week ago, but I forget to post it until now. I still haven't gotten around to Facade, though I've seen a few LPs--my only shift in opinion is that is does seem to demonstrate how scripted and formalized casual conversation can be, but only through how easy it is to break the flow with trolly comments.

Before the removal of the Cthulhu Tooth, I managed to slip into a New Media workshop at the University. Unfortunately I missed the one on Heavy Rain, but I was there for the presentation on Facade.

Much text under here. )
seiberwing: (Internet Arguement)
When I left Cambridge the city was practically begging me to stay. I got nice warm weather, a wonderful sendoff in the form of a fair with fireworks shot off right as we got to the top of the Big Wheel, and then I missed my plane because the bus got stuck in traffic.

Asheville, on the other hand, not only prompted me to leave as soon as possible with cold gray weather but apparently wanted me to actively stay out. The one day this year that the city gets a Winter Storm (well, by our standards--it's predicted to be about 5-10 inches) Watch is the day that I'm supposed to go up for commencement. Even if they hadn't canceled it we would have had to stay home, driving through the mountains in heavy snow would have been suicidal and Dad wouldn't have let us go. So now we're stuck here at home, where it's cold and icky and raining because we couldn't even get consolation snow here. Bleh.

On the other hand, Hannukah presents!

--From [livejournal.com profile] lonescorpion, a copy of Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, a game I've been wanting for a while as well as gracing me with his presence and being helpful in general.
--From Granma, clothing funds. I've spent them on a new winter coat and a bare of bitchin' boots.
--From Mom and Dad, a new fedora (squee!), a little movie!Bee keychain, and...a copy of Spirit Tracks. We've agreed to exchange it for funds necessary to download Psychonauts for the PC, as I am doing right now.
--From David bugger all, but it's about what I expected. He seemed to really like the birthday present I got him, at least. Apparently David got me a movieverse Optimus Prime (in Jetfire armor, blech) keychain, he just forgot to give it to me.

(Also: For those to whom I am sending presents and cards, they'll probably get there a bit late--I'm not sure when I'll get them out and how fast they'll get there, especially the international ones. But they will get there!)
seiberwing: (Hail Hydra!)
To the writers of Devil May Cry 2:

What the fuck was that? Who is Lucia and why is Dante hanging out with her? Why do we care about her big surprising twist? Where's Trish gone? Who is this Arius guy and why does he sound like a Saturday Morning Cartoon version of Hitler? What happened to Mundus? Is he sockpuppeting as Argosax? Where did this guidepost mission statement thing come from? And who the fuck hired Matier's voice actor?

I'd say they were high, but it doesn't contain enough creativity and inspiration for them to have been high. They should have borrowed whatever stuff the people who designed the final boss were smoking.

Also, while I dislike the way most of the Bayformer designs translate to toy form, Ravage is a beauty. Even if his altmode is basically him doing kitty yoga. *fusses over evil robot death cat*
seiberwing: (Hail Hydra!)
Snagged this link off a comment on [livejournal.com profile] shortpacked and I have to admit, it's bothering me a little bit. Here's the disclaimer.

Imagine if you will. Girls that get just as upset as you do when that boss battle just isn't going well and you you've been hacking away at the bastard for hours! A Girl that can counter your obscure science fiction movie reference with one of her own. A Girl who can hand you your ass at Mario Kart. A Girl that, when you suggest watching a movie, will choose that kung fu flick or something rife with gun violence and explosions hands down every time. A Girl who thinks your obsession with giant robots is perfectly normal. A Girl who thinks sword fights are sexy. A Girl with opinions about console games. A Girl who spends more time in the graphic novel section of Barnes and Nobel than you do. A Girl who owns her own RPG dice...and thinks they're pretty.

They're out there. Fangirls.

Thats right lads, hands off your joysticks...We bring the best (and sometimes the worst) of our favorite fandoms to you with a refreshing (sometimes terrifying) female perspective.


I'm all for girls transcending traditional gender roles through fandom, but they make it out like this somehow makes them unique. On LJ alone there's dozens of comms for all of the above and I'm betting more than half of them are female dominated. I'm not even getting into the whole capital letter on Girl thing because I have no idea what that's about, but it bugs me anyway. A small disclaimer on your personal nature and identity is the norm for most bloggers, but

I prefer action movies to romantic comedies, think sword fights are intensely sexy and usually full of lovely sexual tension, get pissed off at that one boss that I can't seem to beat (I hate you Metroid: Fusion spider boss, I hate you so fucking much), and I'm pretty certain the girls writing the blog don't even know the depths of giant robot obsession that I have descended to. None of this makes me special. In the ranks of girl geeks, I'm actually pretty mediocre. If you're going to make your gender a selling point, I want to see you bring something new to the table instead of going "hey, boys! We like what you do and think you're cool, do you like us now?".

I took a quick skim of the content on the first page (after getting past the formatting and font, which is nigh unreadable), and bar a few offhanded references to their gender and a bit of gushing over Twilight, the entire thing could just have easily been written by a guy. There is no "female perspective", or at least not one that's noticeably female, there's just yet another fan perspective on which video games are good and how Frank Miller has lost his whore-loving mind. Girl-wonder.org, this is not. I'm not even sure it's [livejournal.com profile] girl_gamers or [livejournal.com profile] scans_daily. Definitely not [livejournal.com profile] mecha_erotica, although I don't think that's the kind of fangirling they're looking for. It's just gender-neutral commenting, and I'm not sure why they think that's a bad thing.

Ladies? I'm sorry, but you're not the geekiest girls I know. Not by a long shot.
seiberwing: (Scourge Disapproves)
Since I seem to put a Let's Play in every link post, here's The Dark Eye. It's essentially interactive Edgar Allan Poe and it's a complete mindfuck, especially at the beginning. If you feel like freaking yourself out, I recommend it.

For something a bit less disturbing and a bit more ranting about various forms of media, there's Atop the Fourth Wall and The Nostalgia Chick, and the analytical Game Overthinker. All good time wasters if you're indulging in your hobby of being an inspiration deprived social shut-in like I've been these past few weeks.

And on the gay side of things, because gay makes everything better, here is the description of the best anime/sentai show idea ever: The Neohomosexuals!
seiberwing: (Mawwage)
As far as I can tell, Puzzle Quest came into existence when someone sat down and went "Fantasy RPGs are popular to the point that people have died playing them. Simple match three puzzle games are popular to the point that people waste hours with 'just one more game'. What happens if we combine the two?".

What you get is a horrendously addictive game that's eaten my brain for the past few weeks. The plot's paper thin, like most older/simpler RPGs, but the characters are still lively--although most of them are annoying and the player character knows it. My guy spends a lot of time going "...your majesty, you have a whole army and we're fighting the undead, why do you need me to go out and escort a caravan led by a dwarf who won't shut up about how awesome his siege weapons are?". It's that little bit of self-awareness and snark that makes what would normally be a stereotypical plot designed to ferry you from one mission to another just a bit more interesting.

The game mechanics are incredibly easy (match gems for mana, bring enemy HP to zero, don't die), but there's a Final Fantasy-esque system of spells and equipment that you need to have in the right combination for maximum efficiency. There's also a lot of strategy involved in figuring out which kind of mana you need, what spells you need to cast, and how best to handle your foe's unique spells and abilities. [livejournal.com profile] koilungfish has a couple of charts dedicated to analysis of the various spells, and while I thought this was rather amusing at the time I can now see why it would come in handy.

It's also intriguing on a psychological level. With a game like Bejeweled, you're only trying to beat it so you can get to the next set of gems that looks exactly like the first. However, when you're beating an "opponent" and trying to get enough experience to get to the next level and learn Heat Sink so you can fight Dulog the two-headed ogre, there's a lot more drive there.

It's a very fun game and I'd recommend it for anyone who has a lot of time on their hands, or wants to play an RPG that doesn't involve eternal level grinding or long cut scenes.

You know what else is addictive? Vegetable crisps. Especially parsnip ones. I love this country.
seiberwing: (Safeword)
Movies this time:

From "The Spoony Experiment" comes the Let's Play of Phantasmagoria: A Puzzle of Flesh. The game itself is nonsensical and banal (no joke: you spend the first hour getting ready to go out and then ambling around your workspace talking to your coworkers and trying to finish your files), although I will give it kudos for a vaguely mature treatment of bisexuality. Spoony, however, overlays the game with his own amusing dialogue and makes it actually entertaining! Warnings for graphic sexual content, gore, and child abuse--not something you want to watch with your mum. Unless your mum is cool like that.

For comics-related hijinks, there is I'm a Marvel...and I'm a DC, which starts out as a parody of the old Mac/PC commercials and eventually descends into something with plot, drama, and action-related humor. It's something that should be fail but is instead win, and I'm not sure how they do it.
seiberwing: (Snooze)
It's link dump time once more, because I should be working.

First off, several Let's Play threads of interest.

Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath (video format with commentary). It starts out as a sort of steampunk/technopunk Western setting with bounty hunting and flips to something entirely different about two thirds of the way through. Very nice.

Kaizo Mario World (video with commentary). The game is an insanely hard Mario rom hack, apparently created by the same minds behind the creators of Call of Cthulu. It is played by and narrated by several people, and it's very entertaining to hear their descents into madness.

Animal Crossing (screenshot and artistic format, recontextualized commentary). This LP takes the peaceful game of Animal Crossing and develops it into the terrifying tale of young Billy and the many horrors he encounters during his forced vacation in a seemingly innocent summer camp. I would not recommend reading this one right before bed.

Now, for webcomics. I highly recommend The Adventures of Dr. McNinja. It is the story of a doctor who is also a ninja and the complete and utter madness that occurs in his world, with just the right touch of actual drama and serious content to make it more than silly martial arts wankery. Seriously, just read it, it's awesome.

Aargh!

Aug. 17th, 2008 12:43 am
seiberwing: (Existence)
So I got to the ending credits of Hotel Dusk:215 about five minutes ago, after no less than sixteen hours of solving amusing puzzles, having things make no sense (such as having a pencil sitting in your suitcase for half the game but never being able to actually pick it up and put it in your inventory until there came an obscure need for it) and sitting through endless dialogue. The last one is expected in such a game, mind you, but is still rather annoying to an impatient someone and without the whimsical fun and fast-paced action of Phoenix Wright. A good amount of time could be cut out of the game simply by putting in "I explained to so and so what I'd found out about this and that" instead of having to recap every single time you talk to a new person. Realistic, yes, but pointless when the player already knows this stuff.

Still, I was intrigued by what was going on and by the end of Chapter Nine willing to sit through the inevitable hour of pressing the 'continue' arrow just to find out what was going on.

Content contains spoilers for Hotel Dusk: Room 215 )

In short, no more interactive novels for Seiber. I require more action, and ideally more crack.
seiberwing: (Explanations)
So I'm playing Theo's copy of Final Fantasy: Crisis Core (also known as FF7's prequel or Zack's Big Adventure). It's not bad, exactly, it's just that the long unskippable cutscenes that pop up whenever you take three steps are really damn annoying. If I wanted to watch five minutes of SOLDIERS fighting each other I'd go back and watch Advent Children again.

On the other hand, the cutscenes themselves don't actually make a lot of sense, and I don't think they make much sense to Jack, either. It's all people standing about saying things that don't connect to anything that's actually going on and being angsty because of it. Genesis is an especially bad offender in this department because he has a habit of quoting LOVELESS (it's some sort of novel that he really likes) at every possible opportunity and it takes bloody forever. Cutscenes are for special dramatic events and special attacks only (and even those should be kept short). I don't need one for going up a bloody ladder or entering a room or having romantic tension with Aerith when a few dialogue boxes would work just as well. It's also a huge time-waster when you're in the subplots like taking Aerith on a date and getting my wallet nicked so I have to run around finding the kid for a good ten minutes and then go find his stupid money that got eaten by a worm monster. Aren't I supposed to be saving Shinra or something? Why am I buying a pink bow for this girl when she's just gonna get it cut off in the next game?

The plot is...again, neither Zack nor I have a clue what's going on. The villain motivation seems to be that they have spontaneous developed wings it's just the one wing, actually and this makes them angsty because they think they're monsters rather than not being idiots and getting the bloody things amputated. I see where all this wingfic business comes from.

Once we get around to actual gameplay, it's not so bad. Fights are a combination of figuring out which materia/sword you want to use and then pressing X for a while until whatever you're facing dies. Simple enough. There's also the DMW, which is a little casino-style spinny thing at the top of the screen that features the faces of people you've met (and the silhouettes of the ones you haven't). Match them up right and you get special attacks--Aerith's 'attack' is especially nice, it raises your HP like a thousand points, and Tseng calls down an air strike, which is pretty amusing when you're fighting something like Bahamut. If you get a series of three sevens along with the matched pictures you level up, and I think they tweak the odds the more you fight. If it was just random it wouldn't be too pointful.

There's also little 'Missions', which are basically you getting sent someplace and slaughtering everything in sight while obtaining any items that might be lying about. Quite useful for building up levels. Considering that they contain no cutscenes at all, I think I enjoy them as much as the real game.

Anyway, so there's your answer as to why I haven't been writing any fanfic lately.

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