Friday, November 30, 2012

The future is now: Sponsored by [advertisement]

So here it is then, the future: long gone are the days of plugging your console into your TV, long gone are coaxial cables, even scrabbling to put the SCART in, whilst trying to trace the input with your finger to make sure it's the right way up, is slowly becoming something you will wistfully retell to your grandkids. Nowadays everyone has a digital device and can "game" on anything. We have finally come to a point where these devices have higher quality games, no less than a few years ago colour mobile devices were playing glorified Commodore64 games using your 2,4,6,8 keys as a joystick.  Now we have easily PS1/PS2 quality games on the bog standard SMART phones, in no time at all its going to be the same tech everywhere expanding/improving at the same rates. As someone who has lived through the advent of home gaming, through generations of consoles, I can consider this a kind of golden age of gaming... Its everywhere!

Yeah its fucking everywhere and sponsored by fucking ads!

The horrible many phallus-fingered beast known as media marketing has caressed, fondled and penetrated its way into our gaming lives. What started as humble forking over of cash for games sprawled into generating continuous income through, monthly payments, bastardised into micro-transactions and the obvious advent of "free"-to-play. I fucking hate adverts, even on the television I resent being show some biased self funded lies to promote filth. Now every device has some way of promoting a product to you, any downloaded has some blatant advertising banner that is there for you to accidentally tap on. The worst product of this is click-to-play an unethical heartless use of your time, you get credits or get reduced fees for games/apps through purposely fulfilling "promotions" or clicking on ads. Greed is the basic incentive here, it's not targeted to benefit you directly unless it is genuinely a product you care for and 9 times out of 10 you dont you just want the game/app.

In-game advertising is a different beast, blockbuster games sponsored by products is a more solid and understandable rape, less subtle and molest-y. "Here is our massive cock product, lets ram it down your neck-hole". You know you can almost respect that...

I think I'm just pissed at all these ads that are forced into, and on top of games, they are so invasive, and the developers are aware of that that in many cases they give you the option to "pay" to get rid of them; I miss the humble "demo". The worst part these ads are actually penetrating all orifices, You see the same ones, on webpages, on kindles, on all platforms. The internet media marketing monster has its slimy tentacles nestled all over, and we have to live with it. I think we ruined it guys, time to make web 2.0... Oh wait...

Love and coke/pepsi/webcasino/chocolate philadelphia/mars/marks and spencer/wonga/giffgaff/charitywithhorriblepicture,

Richie X

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Guardian School of News Reporting

We're... urgh... digital natives and we're now of the generation where mainstream media journalists don't really represent us. They's falling over themselves to appear trendy and more than a little obsessed with Twitter. Last week we read a fascinating story in the Evening Standard about Z-Celebrities reactions to Z list Celebrities leaving Celebrity reality shows for 'medical reasons'. This was whole page. This is loser generated content at it's worst and for those of us who grew up on the mean streets of long forgotten forums and who cut our teeth trolling wicca websites the constant obsession with who said what onTwitter and the sheer laziness and naivety of reporting drives us insane. Richard Bacon's answer to the problems of Trolling (pronounced Trollllling not trole-ing apparently) is to make everyone's profile with their real name and photo.  yeah, because RealID worked out really well.

Anywho. Who are we to complain? We're just the little voice of the internet. If you can't beat 'em, join 'em. Here be the news.

This week's top tech stories including Clanwarz Timesplitters 3 server, Gamasutra's golden rules for indies and Wired blowing their own horn as usual. Plus what does one half of videogaiden have to say about the next trend in tech?


Nicholas Lovell pulls a 'Bercow', Ubisoft are up in arms about how killer franchises The Hip Hop Dance Experience and The Expendibles 2: The Video Game aren't topping the charts, Xbox magazine shows off it's journalism chops and why award winning Eurogamer may win a Pulitzer.

The microfanfic phenomenon continues apace. 
  What has the Mars rover discovered recently?
Which lucky celeb gets their fortunes told this week?

See how fucking infuriating it is?

Monday, November 26, 2012

Formula Zero Grand Xix

Who wants a review of a nine year old game? Who DOESN'T want a review of a nine year old game more like? Yes Wii U is almost upon us and all those retarded journos, the morons who run GAME and those ridiculous early adopters won't stop bloody going on about it. However, much like the 3DS it feels like a series of reruns. There's genuinely nothing original on the platform bar Nintendoland but I can tell you now that 90% of Wii U games won't pick up on the brilliant idea of hiding information on the game pad or asymmetric gameplay. 

It'll be like motion controls all over again. Everyone and their dog will make platformers where poor old player 5 (the mum character in the current TV spots) jabs the screen to create platforms and generally has far less fun than a quick spot of rub the man in the boat. 

 But fuck new games. I'm still catching up with the Gamecube releases. I distrust those pricks online who claim to be 'bored' by a console (normally the Wii, which by the way is permanently gathering dust. Who needs to hoover when you've got a Wii permanently sucking up dust because consumers don't know how to look for and buy good games that aren't shootan games?) there's hundreds of thousands of hours to be played on virtually every console and even if you were dipping, playing just enough to make your mind up about it, I refuse to believe that you've done that for a proportion of the semi-decent games. More often than not, you've been bored by a game that's flayed, dissected, promoed and previewed to death on one of those awful sites so by the time it eventual dribbles out you feel like you know it. But hey, that's how online marketing works. Playing and discarding games before they've come out in your territory so you don't have to. Boy this prelude bit is going on a bit isn't it? Take ZombiU for example. This is where I pretend I played the original because I'm a games waaaaaaaankar. I was only mildly interested in it to start off with because it seemed to me to be abundantly clear that all those 'trailers' and those shorts set in some trendy good looking guy's spacious flat, you know the ones where they have a proper haircut and a nice leather lazyboy, were not reflective of the final game. Thankfully, due to the excessive humping of previews my interest has gone from 'limp twitching' to 'back inside my body cavity'. For me, the distinctly average reviews were akin to a sex change. This metaphor has gone too far. 

 In other news, I will get on to talking about F Zero GX soon I promise, my local GAME. The place that inspired me to write this short play has seem to have forgotten that the Wii exists and that WiiU is backwards compatible and as a consequence has all but gotten rid of its Wii section (you can buy Mario & Sonic and Zumba fitness new, some tea stained Mario Kart Wii games make up the only actually playable games in the preowned section). So right now, today, you can go into GAME and look at the boxes for WiiU games. That's sure to placate the 42000 million Wii owners who still only have Wii Sports and Carnival Games. Way to steer them towards an attach rate higher than 2, guys. Good old GAME. I literally cannot wait until GAME goes under again. I have a 2011 Nintendo calendar I got free from ONM and on every day I've written GAME closed? At the end of the day when GAME hasn't closed down I cross off the day and move closer to God because GAME not closing is a modern day miracle. I could go outside right now, set up a stall out of cardboard boxes and sell my old PlayStation games, just the duplicates which amounts to a copy of Die Hard Trilogy, WWF (Pandas) Smackdown vs Raw 2 and two copies of Speed Freaks, and genuinely enter into competition with GAME. If I tweeted about it, the CEO of GAME might catch wind of the scheme, come over to my stall and try to sue because I had a monopoly on the high street game retail sector. 

Anyway. I'm still caching up with the ol' Gamecube releases I never got around to all those years ago. I've got Baten Kaitos Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean, Skies of Arcadia some fucking subtitle, Metroid Prime, Metroid Prime 2 and F Zero GX taunting me from the shelves. I've not touched Baten Kaitos. Skies is old skool RPG in that I've played it for about three hours and I think I've made less than ten buttons presses. Metroid Prime is so good I don't want to play it because then I'll play it and beat it and then I'll be sad that it is all gone and done and I know I won't play it again and so the next time it will be touched is when the guy from the council come into my flat to clean up my remains which slumped in the lounge for three years before anyone noticed I'd died and chucks it in a bin bag to give to Oxfam. I can't play Metroid Prime 2 until I finish Metroid Prime obviously. F Zero GX however....

Is soooo hard. It doesn't help that I'm visibly physically deteriorating with early onset middle age but it is ball achingly hard. I'm currently on Chapter 4 of the story which I had to buy from the fucking in-game shop with tickets that I had to earn by coming somewhere respectable in the Grand Prix races. Which, by the way are also fucking hard. I only took a year of on/off trying to beat Chapter 3 and even then I fluked it. I enjoy games being hard. I'm not that prick off the internet though who won't even look at a game's box art if it isn't as hard as those old arcade games that were designed to be hard so you'd pump all you cash into them. But at my time of life spending my precious gaming time doing the same fucking level over and over again and failing miserably isn't the most productive use of my time. I'm reading Reality is Broken at the moment because I'm a book waaaaaaankar and all the cool stuff that Jane McGonigal goes on about is moot because my gaming life for the last year is failing that one fucking mission over and over and over. It isn't even consistent either. Here's how my last series of playthroughs went. I came 8th then I came 20th, then I got retired, which the announcer pronounces retard, then I came 5th, then I came 12th, then retard, then retard, then retard, then I came 2nd (close), then I came 12th, then I came 11th, then I came 6th, then I came 9th, then retard, then 8th, then 5th, then retard, then 4th, then 11th, then retard. And then finally I came first and the tiny little burst of endorphins in no way made up for the tens of hours I'd spent getting it wrong. Then I bough Chapter 4. CHAPTER 4. How many chapters are there? I hope that there's 6 Chapters to be honest. I just want to get it off my Backloggery and move on. 


Sunday, November 18, 2012

We heard something about someone but we're too afraid to write about it on the Internet

Fortunately, Alcamoth Citizen our journalist from Xenoblade Chronicles is in a place where the press can't touch her. She truly has freedom of speech. So Alcamoth Citizen, lay it on us. What's the haps?
I think that that says it all. I hope we haven't implicated anyone directly or indirectly with this post....

Monday, November 05, 2012

The snake eating its own tail

So despite GAME disappearing, our local store has curiously reopened (so that's why the lights were on 24/7 for the whole six months it was closed). A couple of weeks ago my better half was away for a few days so I conspired to waste my money on a game and revel in it until she returned. I could hide the game in the cupboard of things I have to keep in storage because they give out the wrong message to visitors when they visit the house tm. Despite giving up on GAME numerous times I was on a time sensitive mission. I needed a silly game, it had only just come out and I couldn't wait for online delivery.

On an unrelated note here is a play I just penned called Some Things Never Change

Some Things Never Change
By Cunzy1 1

A HANDSOME MAN who looks very well hung and charasmatic and could pass for early-mid twenties walks into a GAME store. He wanders around the store with intent and eventually queues up for the till whilst a MORON is trading in 50 copies of Fifa to a GAME WORKER. GAME WORKER 2 is busy stocking the display case behind the counter with about 100 copies of Fifa 2013 for all formats.

MORON: When is the new Pro-Evo out?
GAME WORKER: Pro-evo? No mate you want Fifa it's much better

GAME WORKER 2 stops stacking copies of Fifa 2013, ignores the queue of six people and joins the conversation.

GAME WORKER 2: No Pro evo is by far better.
GAME WORKER: Better than Fifa? No way. Pro evo is the bomb. I mean Fifa is the bomb. See what happens when I work with this guy?
MORON: Nah man, Pro evo is better.

The HANDSOME MAN rolls his eyes and leave the queue and continues to search the store. Once MORON and all the other people in the store leave he approaches the counter once again.

HANDSOME MAN (sweating profusely): Hey umm dude do you have that crazy Pokemon typing game?
GAME WORKER 2: Pokemon typing game?
HANDSOME MAN: Yeah it came out last Friday.
GAME WORKER 2: Typing game?
HANDSOME MAN: Yeah came out last week. Comes bundled with a bluetooth keyboard. Plays like Typing of the Dead?
GAME WORKER 2: Typing game?
HANDSOME MAN: Yeah out last week.
GAME WORKER 2: Pokemon Conquest?
GAME WORKER 2: Pokemon Black and White 2?
HANDSOME MAN: No that isn't out yet.
GAME WORKER 2: Let me check.

GAME WORKER 2 then goes out to the room in the back, unzips his flies and holds his penis for ten minutes. He then comes back out.

GAME WORKER 2: No sorry it must not be out yet.
HANDSOME MAN: It came out last Friday?

We now enter the mind of HANDSOME MAN

HANDSOME MAN: So despite the fact that this store recently closed and has now reopened you aren't stocking a spin off game for one of the most popular if not the most popular game franchise of all time 3 days after it launched? Not only that but you have literally no idea it exists. Are you hopeful for the fate of the reopened store given that the Oxford Street flagship store recently closed down and presumably that got a significantly higher footfall than this somewhat satellite store? Is this how the chain is to be saved simply by overstocking Fifa games every year? Because I recall that strategy being tried before and not really working. Well I imagine Amazon must be quaking in their boots as consumers flock from the range and value of their video game retail section to the almost pointless and somewhat redundant brick and mortar shop that offers neither competitive pricing, convenience or stock to the gamer who doesn't want to play Halo and Fifa then. Well bloody done.

We now leave the mind of HANDSOME MAN

HANDSOME MAN: Weird. Can I just buy this then?

HANDSOME MAN puts a copy of Alan Carr's stop smoking game for the DS on the counter. It is priced 99p but GAME WORKER 2 only asks for 98p. HANDSOME MAN pays and leaves the store sweating so profusely that he glistens .