March 25th, 2010
|09:32 pm - Perfect Nitpick|
So there's really only one thing that I don't like about the remastered XBLA version of Perfect Dark compared to the N64 one.
Since all the original textures are considerably lo-res, the team at rare put some time into creating new higher resolution textures, and upping the poly count on the character models. For the most part this is an improvement all around. However, the number of people from the Goldeneye team who worked on this that are still at Rare can be counted on one hand. Most significantly, co-creators Martin Hollis, David "Dr." Doak, and Steve Ellis had nothing to do with remastering this, having long moved on to doing their own things.
As a result, there are some places where things have been changed in a way that diverges from the vision of the original creators of the game. The most noticeable of these changes is Joanna Dark herself, who looks like an entirely different person.
"I felt and feel there should be more games centered on women. Having just made a game starring a man [Goldeneye], it seemed logical to create one around a woman. We also wanted her to be quite normal, not with supermodel looks, perhaps a little androgynous." -- Martin Hollis (Retro Gamer, Jan. 2006)
(Original production sketch.)
Then again, in the 2005 prequel Perfect Dark Zero, the current team at Rare not only made her look like a pop star (though not Rihanna, the name that keeps popping up on gaming forums in relation to Joanna's new look in the remake), but apparently even forgot entirely that she is British.
But even worse than that (placed in italics to indicate that I am exaggerating my annoyance)!: they completely ruined this fantastic dress I love that she briefly wears in Mission 7, by adding this hideous thick gold trim. Not to mention the modification to the opening on the side that has me wondering if the artist has ever actually seen what one of these dresses looks like for real.
And also, her new makeup artist. You can't see it very well from this tiny low-quality pic, but her eyeshadow is very noticeably blue compared to the bit of silver-ish eye shadow in the original, which combined with the rest of her makeup being even heavier than what she wears on a regular mission, results in making her look generally a bit clown-esque.
But other than that, of course, the game is great fun.
March 15th, 2010
|08:25 pm - Writer's Block: Out of fashion|
Not necessarily a fashion style, but an going trend in fashion: this whole assigning jeans an arbitrary size number nonsense.
Sizes for guys' jeans make sense -- there's a number for waist and length, they can find exactly what they're looking for in an instant. Or as is still frequently the case, their wife can pick out jeans in their size for them, and they'll always fit.
But women's jeans sizes are archaic. Guys wonder why it takes women so long to shop for clothes? It's because you have to try everything on. Everything. Because you rarely get easy waist and length sizes. Instead its some arbitrary number. Likely because clothes makers realize that women don't want to think about what size their waist is in inches, so they'll sell more jeans if its a random number.
And it's not like you can just figure out your number and never have to try them on ever again. Every brand has some slightly different crazy size system. Sometimes even two different pairs of jeans from the same brand with the same number won't fit the same. It's maddening.
But that's only for waist size. When it comes to height, you have a choice between only two, sometimes three, and on rare occasion four options. Typically it's just Short and Regular. For some reason stores rarely carry many Long (at least in the style you probably want), which is funny, because the people modeling the jeans in ads are often probably wearing Long, because models are usually on the taller side. I haven't looked in awhile, but I'm pretty sure guys jeans come in more than three different heights. Which, again, are not standard, but vary slightly from brand to brand.
I say we start a petition for women's sizes that actually make sense! Those people who are insecure and don't want to figure out their waist size in inches need to suck it up and deal, so that it can be easier for the rest of us.
(Also, why do flare jeans almost only come with the super-low cut style waist that you can't sit down in without half your butt being exposed?)
March 14th, 2010
|10:23 pm - Pearl Jam's Curse|
Do you remember Spinal Tap's drummer curse, exaggeratedly poking fun at bands that keep their original line-up except for one position that's always changing? Pearl Jam is one of those bands, and hilariously, their curse just so happens to involve...drummers.
The drummer on their first album was Dave Krussen. He checked himself into rehab just as the tour was starting, so he was replaced on tour by Matt Chamberlain. Chamberlain decided to accept an offer to join the SNL band, but suggested Dave Abbruzzese as his replacement.
Abbruzzese was the drummer on the following two albums, but was fired during recording of the third album. He was replaced by Jack Irons, the original drummer for Red Hot Chili Peppers, and a friend of the band.
Irons also lasted only two albums, quitting due to the touring schedule being too much for him. He was replaced by former Soundgarden drummer Matt Cameron.
Cameron has lasted a whopping four albums with the band! But now, wouldn't you know it, Soundgarden is getting back together...time for a new drummer?
|09:31 pm - I Just Had The Strangest Dream...|
If you were able to communicate with you from ten years ago via one of their dreams, to tell them what it's like in the distant year 2010, do you think your past self would even believe it?
- Bush's term is followed by having our first black President.
- Marvel is now owned by Disney.
- TMNT is now owned by Nickelodeon.
- Rareware is now owned by Microsoft.
- Sega doesn't make game systems anymore, instead just producing games for other systems.
- Sonic and Mario have appeared in several games together.
- Microsoft now makes game systems, successfully inheriting Sega's role as the "edgy" system.
- Remember Marvel Super Heroes Vs. Street Fighter? Try Mortal Kombat Vs. DC Universe.
- Wizard Magazine got rid of their price guide, but no one takes them seriously anymore regardless.
- Marvel fired Bob Harras and replaced him with Joe Quesada. Over the next ten years, Joe Quesada slowly became Bob Harras.
- Chris Claremont finally returned to the X-Men, and it actually wasn't very good.
- Frank Miller made amends with DC and did a sequel to Dark Knight Returns, and it actually wasn't very good either.
- No one cares about The Matrix anymore, after the sequels were nearly as bad as The Phantom Menace.
- Star Trek is the new Star Wars.
- And a remake of that cheesy Star Wars knockoff Battlestar Galatica was even better.
- We have DVD rental vending machines now. The popularity of this and DVD rentals by mail have caused rental chains to shut down many of their locations.
- Halle Berry was given an Academy Award for doing a sex scene with Billy Bob Thornton.
- The members of Pink Floyd were able to put aside their differences for one night, to perform four songs together on live television.
- The members of Cream were able to put aside their differences to perform one last tour, and it actually kinda sucked.
- The members of The Police were able to put aside their differences to perform one last tour, and it was thankfully pretty decent.
- The reunited Black Sabbath never finished that studio album, and eventually reunited with Dio instead.
- Roger Waters never finished that studio album, preferring instead to do "greatest hits" tours every other year.
- And during the most recent tour, he was discovered lip-synching to a backing track.
- But even more impossibly, Pearl Jam stopped writing music you like.
- Al Franken is one of your state's Senators. Though after Jesse Venture I suppose it seems like anything's possible.
- Arnold Schwarzenegger stopped doing movies to become Governor of California. No word yet on the Three Seashells.
- The World Trade Center was destroyed by suicide bombers with hijacked passenger planes. Bush declared war on Iraq, despite Saddam having nothing to do with it. He was then quoted as saying going after the guy who really did it is "not that important," and was still re-elected for a second term.
- Britney Spears still hasn't gone away.
March 11th, 2010
|09:41 am - Writer's Block: Welcome to the mobile decade|
August 30th, 2009
|09:53 pm - Spiders|
I hate spiders. Slow spiders I'm okay with. Growing up, our basement had occasional daddy long-legs / cellar spider, which look big, but are slow and harmless (and retreat if threatened), so I got used to those. But fast spiders...fast spiders are not cool. But I seem to have a few of these, and I'm not sure which I hate more, these things or centipedes...which look like spiders, except they have hundreds more legs and are even faster. And look so absolutely disgusting, even if they don't technically bite. Spiders startle me, but these things gross me the hell out.
But these spiders I've seen occasionally in my bathroom... Actually, it might just be the same one spider, and it's been too fast for me to properly kill it. According to web searching I've done, the variety of web it keeps making in my bathroom, and its speed, seems to indicate it's a Hobo Spider. Which sounds scary in name, but apparently they aren't actually poisonous (people just get them confused with a brown recluse, which aren't able to live this far north or something). But they still bite. And I don't like biting spiders. Especially ones that I don't even notice until its running at my foot. I got out my trusty bottle of Clorox, but even while spraying it was able to run behind the toilet, where it tried to climb the wall but slipped off from my continuing to drown it in Clorox, and then it seemingly disappeared. It may be dead and just blended in with the brown trim so I can't see it. Or maybe it hid and its still in there, and its the same one I've tried to kill twice now.
Oh, and did I mention I have centipedes? I hate centipedes. I'm so sick of having a basement apartment.
I wonder where I could get some daddy long-legs spiders, which would kill all these things...
|04:55 pm - The Farve Chronicles|
I think I forgot to post about this when the news was announced. Yeah, so Brett Farve is officially a member of his formerly rival team, the Minnesota Vikings.
Some store and restaurant owners here in Mankato are a little bitter, because everyone had heard he'd be here at training camp...but then conveniently right before training camp he announces he's going to stay retired...and conveniently right after training camp he announces that he's going to join the Vikings after all. And they were hoping for the additional crowds and business they would've seen for those weeks, and feel like Farve snubbed them.
I don't feel snubbed myself. I have a hard time getting too emotional involving anything having to do with football, and think it's hilarious the absolute HATRED many Packers fans have for Farve right now (and the confused looks of some Packers fans who are also Farve fans, and now find themselves rooting for both teams simultaneously...I'm wondering if their heads are going to explode the first game where both teams play each other?).
And yes, I'm planning to tune in every weekend for the games this season. Which is a new, strange feeling. What's happened to me? Even my mom is planning to tune in, and has invited me to come over and watch the games once the season starts. It's a little unsettling, really.
Also, I've been trying to figure out the best way to use my art skillz to take advantage of the Farve hype. T-shirts with a comic-style Farve image? I wonder if sketch cards of Farve would sell, if the image looked pretty enough? Although, while I know you can use the image of politicians without permission on items, is it different with sports stars? Would there be legal issues in printing a drawing of his face on a shirt or cards?
Oh, and there's totally got to be a market for anti-Farve shirts, right? I'm just having trouble figuring out a fantastic idea or slogan. I've seen this shirts with a red "No '4'" sign, like red "No Smoking" sign, but it looks way cheesy.
It's too bad the announcement didn't happen earlier in the year, when Obama hype was in full swing. I could've done something just hilariously over-the-top cashing-in, like an image of Obama wearing a purple #4 jersey, hehehe.
August 24th, 2009
|11:47 pm - Quentin's Top 20 Movies Since 1992|
Quentin Tarantino lists his 20 favorite movies that have come out since he began his directing career.
I think what shocked me the most is when he said "M. Night Shama-lama-ding dong" -- I thought only I said that!
August 23rd, 2009
|12:50 am - Million Dollar Baby In 5 Seconds|
This is so completely wrong, and offensive. And I laughed so hard.
I think it's the fact that it not only turned the movie into a satirically offensive joke...but that it simultaneously actually does a good job of summing up the entire movie.
(Warning: don't watch if you haven't already seen Million Dollar Baby...contains spoilers, and the vid won't seem as funny anyways.)
August 22nd, 2009