The Doc Speaks: Konami, please stop.

Tacky?  Tasteless?  Perhaps!  But, it’s one way of capturing the well deserved backlash, right?

Oh, Konami!  You’re either gluttons for pain or you’re the biggest brunch of trolls within the gaming fandom this side of <insert joke about your disliked side in a gaming fandom conflict of choice here>. A ways back, my complete distaste and disgust was reserved for Electronic Arts (alias, “EA Games.”  Over the years, my ire towards many companies came and went.  This is mostly because they became less relevant and suffered for their mistakes.  That or they realized what they have been doing wrong and have made an effort to correct their past issues.  In EA’s case, one could say it’s the former leading into the latter.  However, the time to grill them is over… for now.  We’re here to dig into Konami!  I have a feeling the disdain for Konami will not vanish any time soon.

NOTE:  I know I didn’t post anything during the previous weekend.  The fair I volunteered at took a fair bit out of me, in addition to my non-stop job hunting… which may as well be a job all its own.  So, my time feels squeezed and attempting to balance it is quite the struggle.  As always, thanks for understanding.  Also, if you’re keeping a distance from the Konami clusterfuck, please understand my reasons for continuing to be flustered with a company that I supported for ages.

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Ramblings: Hype Backlash Returns!

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Around last year, I discussed something I referred to (in a tongue-in-cheek manner) as “The Drizzt Effect.”  Long story short, an out of the blue concept becomes popular… too popular.  Suddenly, everyone wants to play as this character in other peoples’ games.  However, I’m not going to be talking about D&D that much here.  This time, it’s more so about the gaming community (while reflecting on and poking fun at my take on things.)

Overall, last year had a mix of satisfying releases and disappointing ones, as does any year.  I personally enjoyed Witcher III as a well done follow up to its predecessors (as well as an adaptation of the novels.)  While the hype train almost deterred me a little, I decided to challenge it on its own merits.  Overall, a satisfying game, even if Geralt is kind of Batman.  Now, can I say that for all the following games I had adverse reactions too?  Heavens no!

As I’ve said in another post, fandom tends to ruin things for me.  I’m a bitter old soul who becomes unnerved by too many screaming, celebratory voices.  Beforehand, it was Five Nights at Freddy’s.  The series itself is okay in my opinion, not particularly engaging or fun, I did like the first game at the time it came out though.  At first the lore caught my attention, at the very least as a well written creepypasta.  Then the relentless waves of how amazing it was surged everywhere.  I couldn’t escape absurd and esoteric theories, strange fan works among other things.  In a sense, I’m an angry hipster who hates when things get popular.

Perhaps none highlight this more than Undertale.  When I first heard about it back early Fall, I found it to be a charming homage to Earthbound and various other classic RPGs (particularly from the earlier 1990s.)  I had my fun, but the game didn’t really stick with me too much (even after going through a non-violent run.)  So, I packed my bags and decided to check something else out.  No harm done.  Then the floodgates open.  From the Hellscape that is Tumblr, dank memes and jabbering shoggoths emerged from the woodwork to shout at the world the glory that is that game.  I repeated my cycle of quickly becoming a jaded old man.  Returning, I had come to see a game that’s not as “hard” and “deep” as I initially considered (or at least, as others had said.)  I found the game more shallow and lacking the humor and depth I originally thought it had.  I also booted the game to do a “genocide run” out of spite.  And so, I enjoyed the tears of feels-filled fans, as being a very petty and vindictive gamer can be fun all its own.  Now I’m at the point where I roll my eyes and move past.  But, that is the cycle of hype backlash for me.  While I don’t care about what I consider a charming yet mediocre homage anymore, I’m sure something will earn my very petty ire.  This all depends, what are waves of rabid fans going to clamor about next?

Ramblings: What Gives, 2016?

In one month alone, we’ve lost a small handful of cultural icons.  They’ve been part of our lives since childhood or some point in growing up.  Perhaps they directly shaped who we are.  Needless to say, it really sucks.  That said, death is the said fact of life and reality itself.  Everything will at one point die and that terrifies us.  Especially consider the fact we like to think of what we love as being immortal or invulnerable, but that’s sadly not true.  And because we lose someone so special to us, it tends to taint the entire timeframe around that loss.  However, I don’t think we should do this.  If anything, it doesn’t do justice to the amazing memories we’ve had thanks to the people we had recently lost.  Whether it’s Labyrinth being the first movie you remember seeing (and with Bowie’s performance as the Goblin King, how can one forget?) or jamming to Motorhead for the first time, those memories won’t leave us and we should be thanking the deceased for giving us those opportunities in the first place.  Plus, I’ve lost tons of people that were important to me last year as well: Satoru Iwata, Leonard Nemoy, Scott Weiland, Grace Whitney (from Star Trek as well), Terry Pratchett, Christopher Lee, the list goes on and on.  And yet, I remembered them for all their wonderful work instead of stewing in depression.  After all, I’m sure they’d prefer fond recollections instead of fans being sad.

I Feel Fine! (Well, better)

I feel happy!

So, I’ve been a bit of a rut lately.  As I’ve mentioned on another post, fighting depression sucks.  A lot of personal stresser and life in general have gotten in the way, in addition to tiring jobs and what have you.  But, I’m not here to grumble and complain.  Rather, I’d like to say that I’m feeling a bit better.  A vacation was what I needed and once I feel a little more restored, you bet you will see something outta me!  And as always, I’ll try my best to deliver something both informative and entertaining…  And considering most Journos nowadays fail at one or the other (or both), the least I can do is try to do both.  As always, I’m Doc and you’re reading my irradiated archive!  Stay mutated, good readers!

The Doc Speaks: It’s not uncommon to feel “Grinchy”

It’s been that time of the year for a while and it’s safe to say that many of us are sick of it.  We see Mall Santas chugging whiskey outside the local shopping center, spoiled brats screaming about how getting the newest toy is a sign of love, the same holiday pop covered by a flavor of the year music group, sickeningly cheery decorations mass produced by Hallmark-esque megacorporations, you get the general idea.  For many a bitter cynic, the yuletide season simply sucks.  In a sense, rewatching How the Grinch Stole Christmas, there’s a lot to relate to.  Perhaps something about the plot makes us all the more bitter.  But, why is that?

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The Doc Speaks: Fallout 4 – Awesome Video Game, Disappointing Fallout title

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It wouldn’t be Fallout without a masked figure on the front, right?

Fallout is a series of many things; a deconstruction of classic science fiction, a direct homage to said classic science fiction, a now long running franchise that’s practically 2 decades old and so much more.  Above all, it’s a beloved series with an amazing and devoted fanbase.  Sure, there is much division over older and newer generations of games (which I myself will admit to taking part in); but we’ve had more than enough proof that fans have kept the spirit of Fallout alive.  Archive sites like the Nexus contain thousands upon thousands of mods, adding new features to the game or rewriting it in its entirety.  You may wonder what this has to do with Fallout 4?  While others have focused on traversing the world of the wastelands and following a story, this one allows you to customize the weird wastes ahead.  So, why do I praise it as a great game, but comdemn it as a poor Fallout title?  More ahead.  (Warning: Spoilers)

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The Doc Speaks: Why do we want heroes?

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Moments like this is what makes heroes for me.

This all stemmed from a thought in my head, which is by no coincidence the title of the post.  This was after weeks and weeks of dealing with miserable work, feeling like I haven’t been getting anywhere, contemplating quitting my job, and just dealing with depression in general.  The world kinda sucks and you wanna know what?  We could all use a hero to help us out, ya know?  Now, I’m not just talking about the kid who collects extra lunch food for the homeless guy that hangs across the street, the clever tech hacker that thwarts cyber attackers and scammers, or the friendly neighbor who helps get your cat out of a tree.  Sure, these people are heroes in their own right.  I’m referring to incredible beings with equally incredible power who devote themselves to virtues of righteousness and justice.  Why do we want them?  In addition, why do we escape to fantastic worlds where people with incredible powers and over-the-top costumes fight the powers of darkness?

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The Doc Speaks: Fantastic Flops

Originally, I was going to do a review of Fantastic Four.  However, I didn’t want to be like countless carrion eaters picking off the remains of absolute badness.  We know the film is terrible.  There are still tons of folks out there who don’t want to admit it yet.  I don’t blame them, I too wanted this to be a good movie.  However, that wasn’t the only disappointing summer film.  I know there’s many who were sad that Pixels didn’t live up to the immense hype, resulting in some undeserved vitriol and relentless hatred.  And of course, there’s that Paul Blart sequel…  but, I doubt anyone thought that would be good.  All in all, while the summer has brought some smash hits like Inside Out, Mad Max: Fury Road, Ant Man, Avengers 2, Spy and some others; there’s always the flop.  Let’s dive deeper at the sad side of blockbuster cinema.

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An Important News Bulletin!

Hey guys, I’m gonna be helping out at my local county’s fair for the next few days.  As a result, I’d expect a review or editorial either late or the following week.

Also, for folks asking about Fantastic Four on my other blog?  I don’t have much to add to it.  It’s a terrible movie crafted by Fox as a means of holding onto a license they don’t deserve.  There isn’t much more to say, honestly.

Ramblings: Raging Boll Part 3!

That glorious moment when the world saw Uwe Boll’s massive frown.

Uwe Boll has snapped and I do believe this is beginning of a great unraveling.  Now, those out of the loop might find my sadistic enjoyment (or as they say in Deutschland, Schadenfreude) towards Mr. Boll’s descent into madness a bit disturbing.  In that case, let me enlighten you with some tidbits on our fine film making friend.

This is the same guy who exploited a law in Germany designed to bolster artists and compete with international cinema.  All in all, not a bad thing.  The German underground of horror helped to evolve as a result of this bill.  However, he made massive bank for crapping out effortless films that slapped on names of then popular video game franchises before shipping them around for gullible fools to dig up.  Amidst people calling him out for bad movies, he calls himself the only fucking genius here, while mocking both Michael Bay and disabled people in the same sentence.  Jump forward some more years and he’s fed up with critics calling his work rubbish.  His response was a massive publicity stunt where he showed off his amateur/probably-not-quite-“pro” boxing skills against all those meany bully journalists and reviewers out there.  Or rather, beat the snot out of these people in a boxing ring so he can feel better about his low self-esteem.  At the very least, we got a self-aware documentary called “Raging Boll” out of it… and yes, we saw what they did there.  Several bits of rubbish later, he returned utilizing social media and crowdfunding.  After he realized that no one wanted to fund his work, he went off on tirades about how Captain America doesn’t exist, Hollywood can’t art, and the BULLSHIT BUSINESS is run by BULLSHIT IDIOTS.  That said, he didn’t need the kickstarter anyway, since he has enough money to play golf until he’s dead.

With that and much much more, we have a real class act here, folks!  Now, since Boll has more talent making an ass of himself rather than making a good movie, I’m sure his descent into self-destruction will only go deeper and deeper… with the attention either bolstering him for a little bit or probably tearing him down further.  Seeing as he’s become a villain of both the video gaming world and the cinema world, I have my doubts anyone will bail him out as he keeps bringing himself into more trouble.  That or he’ll make a new career based off childish rage and petty passive aggressive vlogs about his misunderstood he is and how much of an artist he truly is…  My lord, he has regressed to that emo kid in your High School art class (the one who was waiting for a game like HATRED to come out, of course)!  With that revelation, I’ll catch you cool ghouls next time.