Since Steam has been kind enough to celebrate my favorite holiday, I will be happy to let those of you who have not partaken in said sale know and give some brief reviews of some of the games I have played off the sale list.
F.E.A.R. Collection: Let us start with the scariest game I have ever played. The Original F.E.A.R. was an awesome game that I heartily enjoyed. I will not play this game in the dark. I will not play this game before bed. If you like spooky supernatural effects, then this might be a pack to pick up. For $6.79, you get the first two games and all the second games add-ons.
Left for Dead 2: I was not a huge fan of this game but according to my friends, I am in the minority. A nice zombie hunt co-op game for almost a quarter of normal cost.
Borderlands add-on “The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned”: This one was not scary by any means but it was full of what makes Borderlands great; Good Hokey fun.
Bioshock and Bioshock 2: Both Games are available for good sale prices and if you have not played these games then you must not like video games. So why are you reading this then?
Cthulhu Saves the World: This is a game that the sale got me to by and for 2 dollars, I really do not regret it. A nice short and simple game ala Final Fantasy 1 or Dragon Warrior that adds a good bit of cheesy humor to the mix. Have fun playing as Cthulhu as you try to unlock your evil powers to destroy the world by becoming a true hero.
Plants versus Zombies: I got tired of the repetition but again I seem to be in the minority. Hack away at zombies with plants that have murder in the hearts.
And so many more games that look to be worth a try. Any games on the list that you have played? Tell me about them in the comments below while there is still time to get them on sale!
So this weekend, like many in the Northeast of the United States I experience pretty heavy snow (considering it was October any snow could be considered heavy). Now with every snow storm tree limbs come down, it’s a bit of a given but this time there were many more, causing power outages and property damage. Now this got me to thinking about something that I love evolution and adaptation. In this case tree adaptation, many of the trees that were damaged this weekend were trees that have survived plenty of winters before, so what made this different? The leaves is my guess (or hypothesis, if you will).
Normally, when the heavy snows come there are only needles on the conifers and the deciduous trees have all gone bare. It wasn’t until today that I saw another adaptation to the losing of leaves, the main one being that during winter there is less light and it is not energetically efficient to maintain the tissue all year long. However, let’s leave that adaptation for a few minutes and think about surface area, which the factor that really comes into play here. Now, when there is snow normally, very little snow actually gets caught on the leaves, the branches get a little but really its minimal. This makes me think that a major reason that trees lose leaves in winter is to avoid limb breakage.
What’s the point of this story, well its two fold. One examples of adaptation of everyone and this is evidence of evolution so people need to realize it’s a true and natural process so stop saying otherwise everyone who is does that and two everyday we can think and science with simple things and this makes it all the more real and life more interesting.
So Quickster has gone the way of the dodo. Well If nature thought about making the dodo, told the world the dodo was going to exist and how cool it would totally be with the wings and whatnot, and then said, “well the dodo may not have been thought out as well as I would have hoped and maybe we’re just going to not have the dodo”. What does this mean? I will be damned if I can tell you. What I do know is that it has confirmed the second guess I have been having for a while now.
Now I am not a business analyst and I can’t tell you what Netflix did wrong from that perspective, but what I do know was that Netflix seemed to have a good deal going for them and then decided that they could make some questionable decision regarding money, services, and customers because they had no legitimate competition. Or so they thought. Now you got streaming coming out of the woodwork and a few very promising mail to home DVD/blu-ray providers and Netflix is scrambling because their impenetrable fortress was a well-put together house of cards.
What does this mean to you? I have no freaking clue. You have to make the right decisions for you, based on what technology and resources you have available. What it means for me though is that I am looking very hard at Amazon Instant Video as well as the Kindle Fire. Seven hours of streaming per charged up battery is not too shabby. Talk to me about what you think your entertainment decisions will be.
This week there were two big pieces of anime/manga news that really caught my eye. One is fairly old now (in the world of news but I haven’t really given my comments so, I figured I could still do it here) and the other is newer and could have a bigger effect on the medium in the long run.
Sadly, I cannot post my reference material here since it has been taken down from YouTube. This video was the trailer (or test footage, I my opinion) of Kenji Kamiyama’s (Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex and Eden of the East) was working on a theatrical version of Cyborg 009 that would be 009 Re: Cyborg. See these headlines really got me excited, I enjoyed GitS and am enjoying EotE. Way back when Cartoon Network showed the recent (well 2001) anime. I have the DVDs for this and will get to it someday (I have to the be the worst about watching things, but this blog keeps me from watching and reading things, hahaha). I really hope that people saw this video but given that it has now been listed as private, I don’t know if you will see the original trailer (below I’ve included a fan modification of the trailer with music from the 1960s anime). The original music really didn’t excite me too much. There are moments in this trailer that remind a lot of Kamiyama’s other works and I think that if he can do his thing with this (the original story of Cyborg 009 can be modernized well by him). I do not like this animation style whatsoever. I think it takes the best of both CG and tradition styles and forgets about them and creates a very awkward form. Part of me says that this might not be the final product and the end product could be very different. Also, even if this is a production trailer it might be only trying to show the character design (which I think looks really ugly, and doesn’t make the transition well). My hope is that this gets switched to traditional animation but I don’t think this will happen. Only time will tell and I hope that this makes its way over here in 2012/2013.
Second bit of news is that Singapore has decided on the film that it will submit to the Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film. The choice was Tatsumi, which was based on Yoshihiro Tatsumi’s A Drifting Life and other short stories. This is only the first step in what may help this film see a “wide” release. This is not saying the film is nominated but it means that there is a chance it will be nominated. I am now expert on international film at all so I cannot even speculate on its chances. I am not keeping my hopes up, last year Summer Wars failed to be nominated for Best Animated Picture and there has only been one animated piece ever nominated for Best Foreign Language Film. The trailer I saw really captured the style of Tatsumi and I hope to see this make it to the States in some form. The trailer and a video with the staff are included in the news article. My realistic hope is that this gets shown at films festivals next year so that it can get some press and maybe make it big.
So here it is, the first episode of our podcast. In this episode we talk about New York Comic Con and Science Museums. Also there is an excerpt from Symphony of Science. Currently it is in review in the iTunes store and as soon as it is we will give you the link. Until then you can check out the Podcast RSS here or just download the episode here.
Thank you and hope you like it.
Update: I forgot to mention this, on Sunday at 1:30 Tekken: Blood Vengeance will be, this movie is terrible but the write Dai Sato who wrote good things like Cowboy Bebop will be speaking. I may attend to ask how long did it take him to write this film.
I tried to come up with a fun witty title for this one but I am still somewhat astonished to be reading this. DC, just after launching its unprecedented reboot and same day digital release plan for comics, has now signed a deal to release their graphic novels, including best selling older titles such as Batman: Year One, Watchmen, Superman: Earth One, various Fables trades, various Y: The Last Man trades, and the Blackest Night trades. It is as if they are trying to bury Marvel and the small comic book retailer all at the same time.
See, I can see how same day digital releases are less of a threat to the comic retailer than one might think. Working as a retailer myself, I see collectors come in day in and day out who are tech savvy but refuse to purchase their books in a digital format. They want that issue in their hands. They want to smell the ink and feel the pages and keep the hope alive that if they ever tire of it, they can sell it back to someone for something. Trades paperbacks are a different animal altogether. You buy your trade because you want to read the story, understanding that, for the most part, it will not be a resalable product. I acknowledge that there will still be those hold outs that prefer to hold the book in their hands, but this is a dark day indeed for the comic book retailer.
With that said, this is a stunningly brilliant move for DC Comics. As I have stated before the Kindle Fire will be a force to be reckoned with and tying themselves to Amazon, a proven powerhouse internet retailer, is a brilliant move. It is a risk to be sure. The Kindle Fire (doesn’t that name sound a bit redundant?) is a device that has not been released yet. The possibility, however remote, exists that it will bomb. I doubt that will happen though. No, I think they are going to sell the hell out of those trade paperbacks.
What do you think? Is this another nail in the coffin of comic book stores? Is an exclusivity deal too bold? I want to hear your thoughts.