Wow. What’s been going on here lately? The place looks like a ghost town. No new content for over a week is a record I’d hoped we’d never achieve, but here we are. For my part I broke a bone near my elbow in a work related incident about a week and a half ago which has made typing difficult. In fact I was surprised by how many activities require the ability to twist or move my arm in such a way that it affects my elbow. Good news is I will have a short post tomorrow.
Here’s the deal.
I am not feeling so hot. It’s nothing major, I’m sure. Just a general case of the blahs that is making it difficult to think and makes me take legendary naps. Yet, somehow, I find myself inexorably drawn back to Faceplant. Routine has reared its ugly head. I have to write an article because this is just what Tophat does on Sunday evenings. I feel like Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man, a sick feeling in my gut as I know that it is time to watch Price is Right but there are no TVs around me anywhere. Uh oh. 7 p.m. Time to write Faceplant. Uh oh. 7:01. UH OH.
Like many forms of technology I have developed a seriously pendulant love-hate relationship with smartphones. On the one hand all I ever wanted was a cellphone that made high quality phone calls. On the other the thought of the entirety of the internet in the palm of my hand is a temptation I cannot resist. So I got a refurbished iPhone a while back. The trouble with owning a smartphone is you will eventually start loading it up with games, which forces me to question whether or not these games can in any way be comparable to those on my Xbox or PC. At first glance the answer seems to be an obvious no, but you have to boil down the concept of gaming to really look at what phone games have to offer. (more…)
There are better things that I’d rather be arguing about. That’s the sentiment I feel every single time some random jerk with a gun flies off the handle starts shooting people while shouting comic book quotes. Every time, it seems like emphasis is placed on what could have been done to prevent a tragedy. Should we limit guns? Are comics and video games too violent? What about movies and TV shows? What happened to the good old days where no one used guns except for the hunting of deer, only during approved government established hunting times? What is our government going to do to stop this from happening again?
The intent of this article is not to trivialize the recent events in Aurora, Colorado. My prayers and deepest condolences go out to all of the victims and their families. My point is to talk about the violence we see in movies and comics and games each year, in a desperate bid for us to start placing the blame for these horrors on the individuals that cause them, and not on the usual scapegoats.
So here’s a question for you. Why is it that humans are born without useable teeth? Why must we bear the process of them boring through several layers of tissue before we can use them? The whole concept sounds incredibly painful my daughter clearly agrees. I’m sure my wife finds the process incredibly necessary in order to avoid tissue damage on her end but it does nothing for my sleep habits. Anyway, this post has a high probability of incoherence as a result of three nights of very little sleep. According to this nifty app on my phone I’ve gotten a combined total of five hours of sleep over the last two nights. (more…)
Happy Independence Day everyone! It’s time to celebrate our thrashing of the British over 200 years ago. Normally on the Fourth of July I’d be outside cooking raw meat over flames I built myself before shooting several weeks worth of gas money into the air to make war against the clouds in a noisy and spectacular fashion. But the temperature is in the triple digits and the humidity is very nearly so. That means going outside could very well kill me, well, more likely my grandma. I’m also banned from shooting off fireworks on account of a drought we’ve got going on around here. They even cancelled the official display this year. So if it’s all the same to you I’ll stay in doors today. (more…)
Hi there Faceplanters, it’s me, Elrood. NOT, as Tophat would want you to believe, Elrood 2. I did miss last weeks article due to a combination of things, namely I’m about to move across the country and that the Prime Evil has unleashed demonic hordes upon the world of Sanctuary. I can see arguments from both sides as to which of these events is more important to me personally. As I’m still extremely busy I won’t going be going over Diablo 3 with a fine tooth comb here, but it’s a massive release from the biggest developer on the planet, so let’s hit some key points shall we?
It feels strange to speak of “the olden days” of gaming and be talking about 2004. That’s when Blizzard released World of Warcraft and basically changed how people thought about games with a monthly subscription. A niche Everquest audience was suddenly ten million people strong, all handing over cash on a monthly basis. On some level almost all the major players have been chasing that same thing since, be it Call of Duty with its Elite service (which for the record, according to an IGN article posted earlier this week, has about 10 million subscribers, go figure) or Bioware’s banking that the Star Wars license will make The Old Republic into the next behemoth of the mmo space. Sadly for them, it’s not. It’s not that the game is bad but that the market has changed. The future is free.
Filed under: Commentary, Games | Tagged: bioware, Blacklight Retribution, Free to play, League of Legends, Malphite, Matthew Lesko, MMO, Rift, Riot Games, sith army, TERA, The Old Republic, World of Warcraft | 1 Comment »
Video game tester. Three words that I’m certain many gamers had wistfully considered some time over the years. For those of us who were raised with fond memories of trouncing games going back two decades, the ability to go to work and play games for a living sounds like a dream come true. I don’t think a lot of us really considered what that would really mean. The tedium involved. The long hours, the low pay, the thankless monotony of it all.
The Trenches, a relatively new comic by three well-known titans of the web comic world, is a look at a side of the industry you don’t get to see very often. Largely because it’s the side that we’re not supposed to notice is there at all. Kind of like how you’re not supposed to notice who has been making all those sweet tennis shoes at the mall.
Japanese RPG’s made me the gaming nerd I am today. I can remember the exact moment that gaming TRULY hooked me. I went over to my friend Patrick’s house one afternoon. His step brother was visiting from out of town and had brought with him a game called Final Fantasy 2 for the Super Nintendo. Pat and I sat, enthralled, as Palom burned through the ice blocking the entrance to Mt. Ordeals. Then in battle, I soon saw Fire TWO. Never mind that I had no concept of Fire One, Fire two was damn impressive. More than anything though, what struck me about FF4 (Final Fantasy numbering makes no sense, thanks AMERCIA!) was the story. As in, it was telling one. I dove in head first to the world of Cecil, Kain, Golbez, Rydia, and all the rest. Games that tell amazing stories have been my favorite ever since. So why did the JPRG’s of my youth give way to a general feeling of “meh” now? What happened?