Monday, September 30, 2013

Let's Play: Pickledancer and Dwod Play Portal 2 Co-op! (Part 5)

All stunts performed by seasoned child performers.

The coolest thing about Pacific Rim was that the Jaegers ran on GladOS. Speaking of which, why didn't steam call their damn Steam OS, GladOS. We would all like to hear that chilling voice greeting our Linux operating system. Oh yeah there's a Let's Play. Let's see what our two test monkey's are up to.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Disgruntled Monkey's Thought Log: Agents of SHIELD & The Blacklist

Finally Agents of SHIELD has been unveiled to the world and I for one am going to look forward to the fun ride it's promising. However if this first episode is an indication of the direction there are a few things that in my mind will hamstring the show from ever being great. Of course this is the first episode so take this more as constructive criticism, rather than a fanboy's rage.

Agent Phil Coulson - Action Bureaucrat
  1. Tone. I was expecting maybe something a little bit more serious, the show it's self seems to almost beg for a more serious tone. There is a scene where the 'monster' of the week makes a brilliant speech about how humanity is nothing now, mere bugs under the foot of the gods that have shown up since the Avengers movie. It's a really interesting theme that could be used to great effect, especially with a group made up of humans. But the show seems to want to make it's jokes and revel in it's comic book roots. This is fine. The show is funny and a hoot to watch, it's just never going to be great if it continues the tone.
  2. Characters. There are some great characters here. Agent Coulson and Agent May are particularly intriguing, but the rest of the team seems to be filled out with the standard cliche characters. There are hints with some of them that there is more going on than meets the eye but the first episode should of set this up a bit clearer. Also did we need the eccentric scientists yet again? Okay you have two, so maybe one can be crazy, the other normal.
  3. Mystery. Why does every show have to have mysteries? Keeping some stuff up your sleeve is fine, it keeps the audience hooked, but you do need to tell us some things. Like give us a little more on who the enemy is going to be. Maybe a little something of substance on the main characters.
Time to strike a pose for the Avengers Janitorial Team!
All these things could become null and void when the second episode comes along. It's just some of the concerns I had. Having said all this I don't think any of these problems are anything to get even the slightest bit upset about. Just take a deep breathe and remember it's only a show. In fact be somewhat grateful because you're watching a television show Marvel program that isn't Mutant X (shudders),

The other new program I watched was The Blacklist and by the end I was seriously in love with this show. It's mainly thanks to James Spader who digs into his character Raymond Reddington and delivers his lines with such a malevolent glee, I couldn't help but smile. At first I was a bit worried by some of the plot elements, but The Blacklist took these elements and used them to subvert my expectations. So well done on that.

It also helped that Joe Carnahan was on board to inject the show with a bit of his directive style. There was some nice action wrapped in a spy procedural. That's right this is a spy procedural and I don't have any problem with this. First episode also delivers a few good twists and it really makes me want to keep watching. Oh and it has it's mysteries but does actually deliver some answers before asking more questions. THIS IS HOW YOU DO IT!

It wouldn't surprise me if Raymond Reddington was related to
Alan Shore.
Of course given time this show could seriously shoot itself in the foot if it doesn't develop some of the characters. But i'm all up in it's business for the time being.

I mean seriously James Spader could read me the telephone book and I would be intrigued.

Thought over.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Disgruntled Monkey's Thought Log: Video Game Difficulty

Being a married man i'm through with all the ranting, but I still have plenty of thoughts, idea's and other random stuff that needs to join the internet in all it's glory. So thankfully two games have come along that have gotten me thinking about game difficulty. Spelunky and GTA 5.

Of course at this time GTA 5 is the hot new thing that everyone is going on about. Personally I'm enjoying the crap out of it as the story is really clicking with me, unlike the fourth installment. I could never really get behind Niko Bellic. For all his bemoaning about wanting a fresh start, the man sure did some horrible shit. Anyway this isn't about story this is about difficulty.

You see missions in the newest Grand Theft Auto have a new mechanic. If you fail the mission three times; or in bigger missions a particular part 3 times, you can skip the mission and continue on your way. Some may think that this is a bad thing and is making video games even more 'casual', however it really allows people who are coming to the game for the story to enjoy it. You don't have to skip it but frustration levels can be avoided.

It just seems like a way to make gaming a much more enjoyable experience, and isn't that what gaming is supposed to be? Entertaining. For all the gamers who want to be 'hardcore' they can just try and get a gold medal for everything. Why can't everyone be a winner?

On the other hand I can understand the attraction to games with a steep difficulty setting. This is where Spelunky lives. I deceptively easy game to get to grips with but to get anywhere you really need to practice and build up some serious platforming skills. It reminds me of all the time I spent on the original Super Mario Brothers and how I always tried to push myself further and further.

This very day I managed to accomplish something in Spelunky that seemed impossible, but by putting the time in I finally accomplished it. My brain rewarded me with a wonderful hit of Joy Joy Feelings, and I was ready to tackle the next Spelunky task.

It really makes you realize that while having making some games easier for a wider audience to enjoy, you need the harder games to give a challenge for people to over come. The two need to exist hand in hand to make the world an entertaining place for people.

So where is all this going? Well I like all types of games and difficulties, I can see why there are different types of difficulties out there and I don't need difficulties to define myself as a gamer I just want to be entertained.

Thought Over.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Let's Play: Pickledancer and Dwod Play Portal 2 Co-op! (Part 4)

Let's do the time warp again.

Well i'm back from my Honeymoon and it's time to get back into the action. For starters we head back to the world of Portal 2 and see how our heroes Pickledancers and Dwod are doing. Please be advised all torture has been signed off on.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Let's Play: Pickledancer and Dwod Play Portal 2 Co-op! (Part 2)

You Monster!

We continue to test the boys. Remember science is coulda not shoulda. RELEASE THE SQUIRREL SHARKS.