Sunday, December 30, 2007

Ratchet and Clank Future; tools of destruction

What I lie sour this series is that you know EXACTLY what you are
getting and this newest installment is no different. That isn't to
say its just a rehash, it isn't. The environments are richer, the
weapons upgrade system is deeper, and the game is just gorgeous.
Something about the one is just more compelling, as well. I've never
felt so obsessed with getting bolts before. More, there's almost none
of the near-impossible scenes that I felt annoyed with on the previous
games. Though that might just be me and how I really wanted to beat
Anyhow, is this the game to buy a ps3 for? I dunno, but theses now
enough out there to make it worthwhile.

iPhone! Ultra-Mega e-mail send NOW!!!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Tuesday, December 25, 2007


If there is a better definition than
"an atheist Jew spending Xmas with the in-laws while everyone but you works in the kitchen"
I'd be very surprised

Friday, December 07, 2007

Mormonism and Romney follow-up

btw, I'm not specifically picking on Mormonism here, just using a relevant example to prove my point from the earlier post.

Jerusalem has been a religious focal point for millenium. Why? BigHugeImportant things keep happening there. That gives it very special status.

Well, if ages ago, Jesus came to America, and if centuries ago, angels came down and spoke to John Smith in America, then doesn't that make America special too? God-chosen, even?
If you believe that, then wouldn't that have an effect on, at the very least, foreign policy?
I'm not saying it would have a negative effect, but simply that it would change how we interacted with the rest of the world.
Isn't that important to know about your candidate?


Mitt Romney and judging religion

On the way in to work today, NPR was doing a bit in New Hampshire about reactions to Romney's speach and his religion in general.
One person said something to the effect of: I thought Kennedy put this to rest. When a jewish person comes to the forefront, are we going to have to go through this again? Should we really be judging other people's faiths?

In one sense I agree with this guy. Should we be judging if one faith is more true than another? Of course not. Faith, by definition, can't be known in that sense (though many might disagree...ego is wonderful, isn't it?).
But when it comes to the tenets of that faith, then yes, not only should we judge, but we MUST judge.
While a president may be able to distance himself from the direct influence of his church, these are still the beliefs that will shape his policy, and the church determins those beliefs.
Look at our current president. He believes that homosexuality is wrong. He believes this because of his faith.
The Catholic church says that capital punishment is wrong. If we elect a Catholic president, the Pope might not call him and tell him whether to sign or veto a bill abolishing the death penalty, but the decision is already there.

Certainly, on big issues like the above, issues that come up during the campaign, you can simply find out where the person stands. But those are not the only issues that will come up during their term.
More subtle ones: government aid to the Boy Scouts (a religious organization that bans gays from being troop leaders), how scientific information is handled (promoting abstinance only programs against all information that shows they don't work, or global warming, for that matter), and so forth.

Ignoring this is no different than ignoring whether or not a candidate is, say, pro-big government, or a socialist, or an oil baron.

Thats sort of the thing in America. When people say they want 'a person of faith', they are lying. The really mean 'a person of my faith, or at least something close'.
Because I shit you not, for people who toss that phrase around, they don't mean jews or muslims or hindus.


Thursday, December 06, 2007

Jesus was born centuries before 0

I guess if you are a christian, you don't need to know ANYTHING, not even basic history. Of course, this is the same woman who doesn't know if the world is flat or round, so...

As Atrios would say...
the stupid...IT BURNS!!!


Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Abortion Victory!! I hope.

New Laws Defining A Fertilized Egg As A Human Being With All Constitutional Rights

Why would this be a massive victory?
Because people would finally have to face the hypocracy of the pro-life stance.

I am an egg.
I am removed, along with many of my siblings to be.
I am fertizlied because my daddy made stuff in a cup.
I am an American Citizen!!
I am then frozen for an indefinite time, or until I am thrown away.

Now, in what way EXACTLY, is this not a crime.
The moment these laws go into effect (if they do) I want every fertility clinic up on charges.


Atheism, comics, writing, video games

Well, that should cover everything.
Let's go down the list:
Atheism: Interestingly, more and more people I'm talking to are, apparently, atheists. This gives me great hope for the future. I want to make something very clear here. I am not anti-religion, in that I believe YOU get to believe whatever you want. However, you don't get to use that as a defense when someone challenges you on some position you've taken, or worse, voted on. At best, all religion can provide in such a debate is an end to it.
1:"I am pro-choice because, ultimately, this is a biological process, a small collection of cells that is part of a woman's body. That makes it her choice."
2: "Well, I'm pro-life because God says that is a person with a soul"
Effectively, thats like saying "nyah nyah nyah, I'm not listening". There really is no point in continuing the discussion.

Also, having spent some time thinknig about it, I am very disappointed in Pascal.

Comics: 52. I want to get through 52. I know its important. I know that buying the trades makes it easier.
But it just won't end. And I just don't care.
Further, Powers continues to rock.

Writing: Dunno why this was in the list. I am, however, starting to get into photography. Well, mostly into Photoshop more than actually taking pictures. I'm pretty good at it, too.

Video Games: Yes, Rock Band does, in fact, rock. However...Mass Effect. Are there some crappy mechanics? Sure. Are the manual and tutorials woefully insufficient? Definitely. Is it the best RPG of all time? Quite possibly.
Now, it simply isn't fair to compare this game to others in the past. The 360 does, in fact, have a ton more power, and yadda yadda. But it is apparent that this thing was a labor of love for BioWare. The writing, the dialog, the environments (except for the fact that planetary outpots tend to get a little repetative...even that may make sense), the twists and side quests, the depth each of the characters possesses, these are the things that make an RPG great. And in these aspects, I've never encountered anything close to Mass Effect. FFX, KOTOR and KOTOR II, Oblivion, nothing.
So, my new top 5 games (in no particular order)
Mass Effect
Resident Evil 4
Final Fantasy X
God Of War I and II


Monday, November 26, 2007

Mass Effect

I'm not sure I can say how amaznig mass effect is. The best way is through an email conversation I've had over the past couple days:

OK, so, I got completely sucked into Mass Effect (to the point of almost forgetting about Rock Band).
First, the writing is amazing. The dialog is better than any I've ever heard before in a video game.
Second, to back up the first, the voice acting is top notch.
The plot and graphics (for the most part) rock, and the pacing is pretty good.
This really is the next step forward from KOTOR.
I don't know if I was just doing something wrong with my team, went someplace too early, or just have to learn more, but the game is HARD.
The last planet I was on took hours. I had to fight for every single inch, struggle to get through every encounter.
While this was very frustrating, its also very satisfying.

A couple of items...the moon-rover vehicle is no fun to drive.
There are a couple bugs here and there, like your character just getting stuck behind a bar, or, as recently happened, in a wall.
But these are small prices to pay for what may be the best RPG out there.

I ache.

Tomorrow, I drum.

I second that: i've played (it tells me) for 13 hours this weekend,
and i'm not even remotely tired of it. The vehicle is indeed a piece
of shit to drive, but everything else is pretty damned sweet, but i
figured out yesterday how to handle it in a fight much better than

honestly, i could have doubdled the time spent in game if i read
everything in the codex that i gathered, but frankly, i don't think i
can: but the fact that they built a incredibly deep universe is

favorite bug: walking across a bridge in the Citadel, and just getting
stuck right in the middle of it. couldn't go forward, or backward,
until i crouched. and then the invisible wall was gone.

Someday I will get to play.


Until then I will continue assassinating people.

1. While I hate the moon buggy, I will say that it moves like you'd expect a moon buggy to move, and its almost indestructable due to terrain. I think I drove off a mountain top, fell for almost 10 seconds, and only hurt my front right wheel. Assuming the wheel wasn't already damaged.

2. The elevator sequences are pretty long. But I love the small talk the companions make:
A(big alien, deep voice): So, your people created the Geth, the greatest threat to the universe ever. Do you talk about that?
B (female): No. We find it to be very unpleasant conversation. Your people were steralized by the Taurians. Do you ever talk about that?
A: all the time.

As fun as the side quests have been, I finally took my first real step in the main storyline (after becoming a spectre).
And its even more fun than the side-quests.
Also, turning your squad-mates from 'use skills/talents for defense only' to 'use talents for all purposes (or w2hatever)' makes for MUCH more fun. Nothing like seeing a giant dog-beast suddenly fly into the air and get smashed to the ground

super concur about changing the AI control settings. sure, it takes
some of the finer control out of the game (no, don't make that guy fly
in ther air, dammit!), but it also allows me to not go insane issuing
command after command - pausing to do such a thing really takes some
of the flow out of the game. more importantly, it actually allows me
time to use the sniper rifle without going insane zooming in and out.

i do kinda wish, however, that the game didn't keep track of how long
i've been playing. over the course of a 4 day weekend, i apparently
logged 24 hours of game time. this is an unheatlhy ratio, but
stunningly, all i want to do is play more. it's been a *long* time
since i wanted to do that - not even KOTOR did that for me (though, of
course, now i want to re-play that).

I'm a bit disappointed in the sniper rifle, the 'zoom' doesn't appear to be any different than anything else. Or am I missing something?
I am, however, VERY happy with my squad using the rifle. a couple of them become absolutely devastating with it.
Of course, having done more than a few side missions first, I may just be over-powered at this point.

I'm rapidly filling up all the skill-slots though (at least for Sheppard), so I'm curious as to what will happen when I have no more places to put skill points.

I agree with the desire to simply keep playing and playing and playing.
This is to RPGs what God Of War was to action/hackslash games.
If someone would feed and diaper me, I'm pretty sure I could play 24 hours straight.

BTW, Saren and Captain Anderson were the main characters in the Mass Effect novel.

24 hours in, i still have plenty of skill slots to go; not sure you
have to worry about that.

The sniper rifle zoom is definitely different than the zoom on the
other weapons. i don't know what you're doing to not get it - you get
the typical "black circle + fine crosshairs" zoom that you'd expect,
and it's a *big* zoom. saved my life more than once by being *far*
away and just pegging people from the top of a mountain. One shot
kills are nothing to sneeze at.

ahhhh...I wonder if its because my character doesn't have any skills in it. That would make ALOT of sense. Dragsville, daddy-o, I'm always a fan of sniper rifles. Mostly I use a pistol (which, surprisingly, does a ton of damage...).

I'm probably 75% or more through my skillslots. Of course, I might be mentally editting all this and forgetting the skills I'm not bothering with so who knows.

He spent most of the weekend (up until about 8pm last night) doing side quests. So his chars may be a bit more leveled than yours.

He's finally learning to play right ;).