On Lewd Integers in the Decimal System

So I’m about to hit level 69 in World of Warcraft.

It’s a far more momentous occasion in my mind than 70, as you can’t yell “SIXTY-NINE, DUDES!” when you hit 70. In fact, I might be somewhat sad to leave that hallowed ground. In any case, I’m going to need to queue up that sound clip from Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure and unleash it much as one might unleash a beast on my guildies in vent.

Oh, and by the way, 96? That’s 69 for contortionists.

You’re welcome.

Advertisements

Don’t you just love…

…that Windows Vista doesn’t simply “tell” you when it can’t read a disc. No, that would be far too benign. Instead, like the cancer that it is, it must flail and crash and die until you realize there’s a smudge on the data surface…

Oh and I got a new computer. It appears to use Windows Vista AIDS Edition.

Bioshock = High Art.

I figure I should just come out and say it instead of dicking around with doublespeak. Bioshock is art.

After beating the game, for the first time ever I feel as if the title “Game” is a sleight against it. It is an experience, one that could easily be revelatory. For me, it once and for all answered the question of whether or not video games can be art.

There have been ‘Art’ games before like Shadow of the Colossus, Ico, Rez, etc. Those have all excelled in more finely focused ways such as visual beauty or symphonic immersion.

Bioshock is more the total package, perhaps to Video Games what films like Fritz Lang’s Metropolis and Sergei Eisenstein’s The Battleship Potemkin, both being films that addressed complex issues with artistry and scope unheard of at the time. Bioshock, perhaps influenced especially by Metropolis

Everything from the disturbing imagery, to the moral choices, to the beautiful ending, remind me of all the very best in film, prose, poetry, music, and the myriad graphical arts. It is an expression of an idea, many ideas in fact. Not simple ideas, either, or ideas of little import.

Bioshock, if you treat it as an experience and not “another game to use to buff my gamerscore”, acts as a sort of mirror. It asks us to answer questions and make decisions, none of which are easy to make. It also rewards us by treating us with respect, not pandering to any audience or critic’s whim. Perhaps the most impressive facet of the experience is not graphical, or literary, or auditory, nor any level of technical prowess. Perhaps the most impressive facet is that I can say with all honesty, that my life has been enriched by this game.

That is what makes something high art.

LAFS can go die in a fire.

So I’m home again.

Taking classes at the local community college while LAFS figures out just how badly they fucked me over.

Oh, and I’m 20 now. That’s about half as old as Star Wars. Heavy shit, man.

(edit: My good friend Travis pointed out to me that I am in fact two-thirds as old as Star Wars. Math sucks, anyway.)

The 15 Games I Couldn’t Live Without

(Response to Milky’s blog Here)

In no particular order…

1. Deus Ex – PC. Remains the most mind-blowing game I’ve ever played. I’ve beaten the entire game a good seven times, by now.

2. Starcraft/Brood War – PC. Self-explanatory. Second game I ever played. Needless to say, it was all downhill from there.

3. Rez – PS2. More than a game, it’s a damn hallucination programmed onto a little blue disc. The music, visuals, and force-feedback took an otherwise alright game into an experience that still hasn’t been matched, in my mind.

4. Civilization IV – PC. Single-player chess. I could go a lifetime without mastering it.

5. Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic – Xbox. The only game I’ve played through as much as Deus Ex.

6. Harvest Moon 64 – Nintendo 64. Farming has never been this fun. And the choices… do I actually plant crops or do I try and marry Karen before she moves away?

7. Shadow of the Colossus – PS2. I never played ICO, I know, shame on me, but this game is beautiful.

8. Unreal Tournament 2004 – PC. For me, the peak of Deathmatch games. The bot AI is still pretty wicked.

9. Team Fortress Classic – PC. As far as team-based first person shooters go, I never really got into one other than this. I memorized Dustbowl inside and out, and played for a good three hours a night, back in the day.

10. Grim Fandango – PC. Manny Calavera? Hells yes.

11. Morrowind – PC. Better than the sequel, if only for it’s incredibly deep gameplay.

12. Homeworld 2 – PC. For sheer depth of strategy, I don’t think it can be beat, even today.

13. Freelancer – PC. Diablo in space with pretty graphics, oh, and extensive modability. Not a bad single-player campaign either.

14. Soul Calibur – Dreamcast. The Dreamcast holds a special place in my heart, even though it came after I had developed a love of PC games and certain N64 games, it was amazing. Soul Calibur 1 is tops in my book for fighters.

15. The Legend of Zelda – Twilight Princess – Wii. I’ve played a lot of games in recent months, but none has left such an impact as this. I know people go back and forth on this, but I prefer it to Ocarina of Time. One of the only recent games to really grab hold of me with the epic feel, right through to the climactic fight and the heartbreaking denouement.

So that’s it. Anyone else want to list some stuff off?

Bollshit.

So Fumbles McStupid with the camera showed off his newest cinematic abortion.

Yeah, I’m talkin’ bout Uwe Boll.

I genuinely hate this guy. I hate him based on hearsay and bias, no doubt, but I hate him. He doesn’t make bad movies. He doesn’t make bad video game movies. In fact, he doesn’t even make movies.

Continue reading

What I’m going to miss

I’ve lived in Washington D.C. all my life. For the first time in twenty years (my birthday is next friday) I will be not just removed from that, but removed from the entire east coast.

I’ve often said that living here makes you insane by default. I think there’s some sort of brain-ray generator at the top of the Washington Monument that makes everyone go batshit crazy. How else do you explain American politics? For all its flaws, which I could easily spend days enumerating, I will miss certain things that I’ve always just taken for granted.

There’s the parks, for one. Rock Creek Park is one of the best places to hike that I’ve ever been to. I’d go there all the time during periods of stress just to even myself out. Then there’s the museums, all of them free, all of them filled with amazing stuff that you just don’t see elsewhere. I’ll even miss the politics. It’s a thinking man’s game, and I tend to think a lot.

I’ll miss the crazy protesters, not the anti-war ones, who have a good cause, but the anti-circumcision ones. Or the anti-spelling ones. The best picket sign I have ever seen read “Enuf is Enuf – Enough is Too Much!”

I’ll miss the music, and the history. I’ll miss the run down record shop on the corner that Dave Grohl used to work at before he was in, and I do believe this is the proper terminology, “Fucking Nirvana

They say around here that DC is Hollywood for ugly people. I wonder what happens when one of us goes to Hollywood?