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11:10 AM on 04.13.2015

Coachella! Fond Memories and "Revelations".(NVGR)

Hello Destructoid!!!

I spent the vast majority of my weekend watching a "live" stream of Coachella. It's a music festival that takes place somewhere in California, and a
rather good one in fact. It turned out to be so good that I actually sat in front of my computer for nine hours a day Friday, Saturday and Sunday.


But, while it was probably just as lame as it sounds, I was legitamately happy for three days straight.


I'm currently unemployed, so concurrently I also have no friends to speak of. So, for me Coachella was a way for me to get out of my head for a bit. I
just happened to be on YouTube and there it was; A free ticket to one of the most popular music concerts out right now. So, here I am twenty-seven
hours later feeling inspired with fresh tunes replaying in my head. I'm actually beaming! Beaming is the word I would use to desribe this feeling.
Seeing all those happy faces in the crowd and watching all the performers on stage, happy to be performing; It was bittersweet if I'm being honest.


It was a reminder of how distant I've been lately. And, even though I listen to music on a regular basis; It's alway in a lonely kind of way. I have
nobody to share that joy with. I just wanted ,so badly, to high-five any of those happy concert-goers. I wanted to be out there in the dry desert air
taking in the sights and sounds. I mean shit, I would have even rode the farris wheel, and those things terrify me. I just wanted to be a part of it. I
wanted to be a part of the magic. I wanted to buy an thirty dollar shirt and talk to some girls. Aww man, the girls!


I used to sell popcorn at these kinds of events. I worked all sorts of events: The Circus, Monster Trucks, Nascar, The Greatful Dead where the people
danced like wacky, inflatable tubemen. And, they tried to buy stuff with drugs! I don't know, after being on the road doing it for two years, I guess I
was just numb to it. Or, mabey I was just jaded because I always had to work the events. Either way, they are good memories now. I still remember
partying with my co-workers back at the hotel in whatever town we were in. I really fucking miss it. You know how the saying goes.


But yeah, Coachella was sensory overload. The music and the environment brought me back to happy memories. I've been told by someone on this
site that I should let go of the past and stop looking toward the future; to just be content with the present. I simply can't do that. My past makes me
who I am today. I may not be in the best of times right now, but I am greatful for everything that I have. And, the future will justify all of my poor life
decisions one day.


I am amazed that a live stream of a concert could really have this much of an affect on me. I feel motivated. It's as if I had convinced myself over time
that my life had always sucked, and this concert has shaken that out of me. There are so many more memories and feels that Coachella conjured up for

-Driving two couples to a Fall Out Boy concert and being the fifth wheel.
-Playing Mark Ekco's: Gettin Up and discovering Talib Kwali and Bloc Party.
-Making a best friend simply by tolerating his German death metal, while giving him a ride during a work roadtrip.
-Forever regretting it.
-Getting to and from work while listening to Drake and Taking Back Sunday.
-Cappin' fools online in Halo 3 while listening to Paramore and a band called Doe's it Offend You Yeah!

Man, I've had plenty of good times.


I'm starting to get that life hunger back and I really needed that. I'm so sick and tired of letting my past failures, lost loves and fallicies control me.
I'm on some Halo 3, "Overkill" shit right now! I just feel really good and I want to share that. You guys are some of the coolest people on the internet
and every last one of you guys deserves to be happy. So whether you're on the internet, playing a game online or mabey you're outside; Everything
you do is a chance to be happy. And, if you feel good, you have a better chance of making others feel good. That', man.


I'll leave you with Porter Robinson's set from Friday. This was by far my favorite of the festival.

Take Care.


5:55 AM on 03.10.2015

The Format: Games, Sexiness, Music

I Read This.

I don't know much about redheadpeak. (Teacher. Gamer. Geek) 

All I really know is that I see his avatar floating around this site "saying clever shit". He seems like a cool dude. Now, the reason I bring him up is that he plans on writing some sci-fi gamer fiction in the near future. I'm all about new stuff in the c-blogs, and I'm excited to see how it pans out. No pressure, but I'm eagerly awaiting the false-itudes.


Let's Go Oldskool- Zoda's Revenge: StarTropics II

Here's what I remember about this game in a few words: NES, adventure, puzzle, platforming, blue shirt, yoyo, letter, secret, message. Let me go do some research...

...and the research has led me to this video that decribes the game way better than I could ever be willing to.


This Shit's Pretty Half-Assed So Far.

That is a fair assessment of not only this c-blog, my life too. Nowadays, I'm so focused on planning and doing stuff right. So much so, that I end up doing nothing at all. That's no good. Back to half-assed success, I say. I do plan on starting a YouTube series soon. I doubt if it will be gaming related, so I ain't gonna spam you guys or anything. The only thing concrete for now is that it will have a format and be delivered consistently. Who here YouTubes? I'll take any advice I can get. What would you watch?


Eyes Forward: Mirrors Edge 2

I've stated recently, that I've been unemployed for about 6 months. Subsequently, I've lost all my money, games and friends and weed. I've also been, without booze and quit, there's that. 

Even back way in 2009, when I had all those things, I was still terribly depressed all the time. Go figure. Mirror's Edge introduced me to parkour. And after finding some reasonable videos on YouTube, I was inspired to go out and actually enjoy my spare time. I had a physical hobby. I met friends and even though, It's been years since I've done any "monkey shit" and I've lost touch with those people; I still consider those to be the best 2 years of my life. While, I don't expect Mirror's Edge 2 to have, the same effect, I already know that it's possible for me to be happy again...eventually. 

And, someday, I'll probably buy it used...Fuck EA.

This is the exact video that made me decide to try parkour.


Hotness of The Blog: Monica Santhiago

One of my favorite pornstars. She can still get it any day.


DJ CrazEboy7

Today we're looking at a song called "Car Radio" by Twenty One Pilots. This song, is special to me. It blew be away the first time I heard it, and every time since. It's fairly recent yet still has a nostalgia factor for me. I can't really explain it. It brings back memories, old, new, happy and sad. Enjoy.


That's all for now. Thanks for being here. 

Say somethin' cray in the comment bay.



4:26 AM on 03.01.2015

Zim's Back: Invades comics

Yo! Invader Zim is getting a new comic in July. I'm so happy, I could failblog!

I once met this kid in highschool. He was a quiet kid, always drawing and shit. One day he looked up and spoke to me. He rambled about weird goth stuff and showed me his art book full of fucked up shit. He may as well have been Dib or Jhonan Vasquez's son. I never talked to him again. Which is a shame, because that guy was probably awesome.

Also, this guy ^ can suck a D.


6:57 AM on 02.27.2015

Because I'm Happy: Humanity's Last Stand.

My Happy Place: A Hope for Humanity.


It all started in Canada. At first only one person was Happy. Then, two. Three's a Happy crowd. It makes me sick just thinking about it. They had no idea. Nobody did... How could they know that Happy would spread like a plague?


Plauge Inc. is an odd little game. Honestly I can't tell if I'm supposed to be God, a madfuck scientist hellbent on watching people suffer, or simply the deadliest plauge known to man. It's complicated. I feel like a bit like all three after my time. 


But, the world is rid of me now. Happy is dead. 


The few that remain are undoubtedly unHappy to say the least. What was three years in the making and a year of sheer madness was only an hour and a half for me. 


All I wanted was to make the world Happy. I infected the whole world without them even knowing it. Then one day, I was discovered. They underestimated me. Both, in severity and the sheer number of people. As they began work on a cure for a new disease, afraid of a little cough, I had to evolve. 


Before they knew what in the fuck was happening, people were dying. Total organ failure. People were now as Happy as they could be. They dropped like flies. Chaos ensued. Anarchy in the streets. I wanted to wipe them all out...They defied me. 


After my disease had obliterated the insides of the infected; there remained a few thousand healthy people left on the planet. I had failed. 


But, now it was I who was Happy. 


Because, humanity had looked a terrible death in the face and said "no". They fought each other. They hid in bunkers like crazy people and they lived. It caught me right in the feels. 


There may not be any actual point to this blog other than to share this gaming experience with you guys. But, it did happen on a tablet while watching Friends on Netflix. 


And, this world was very real to me for an hour and a half. I guess my point is that is feels good to lose and win at the same time. I named the disease Happy purely for hipster "ironic" reasons only to find out that this game, this endeavor and this experience made me happy. 


And, if I was stoned right now, my head would have exploded. Take care.


5:58 AM on 02.22.2015

The Brunt, the Blunt and the Hunt: February is annoying to spell.

What's up, every body! 


Guys, I've come to a realization...

I'm a complete sadsack. That has to be the reason that nobody loves me. See? That last sentence. That's exactly what I'm talking about. 


See, I'm unemployed(sad), I have no friends(also, sad). And, February has to be one of the hardest months that there is for me.(vaugely sad). 


Let's explain. 


February is when Valentines day happens. And, although I'm in my mid-twenty's(sad, again), I've never actually had a Valentine. Which sucks just does.


Also, every time I get physical with a lady, I'm reminded of three things, lost loves, the penis softening prospect of knocking them up, and my mother. Which, besides being fucking disturbing is also super gay, because I still live with my mother. 


Did I mention I'm in my mid-twenty's? 


And, before somebody mentions the Oedipus complex(which is NOT happening). Let's distract you with the daddy issues. 


See, I used to look up to my dad as a kid. I was so proud of having a cop for a father. That, is until he started cheating on my mother and beating her and stuff...

So by the time the divorce came, it was a pretty happy time for me. Until the custody battle, where I felt like a football being thrown between my mom,(the blatant favorite) my forced child therapist that would insist that is wasn't my fault(even though, I never once thought that it was) and my dad, who would say things to 12 year old me such as,

"Who's your mother fucking?"(hooray, childhood.)


What was, I talking about? 

Oh yeah. February blows. 


And, by the time Valentines day rolls around, and I once again watch my mother be as sad and lonely as I am...All I can think is "Man, my mom needs to get laid more than I do."(that's probably the most upsetting bit of February, now that I think about it.) 


Then, I remember it's black history month. And, that in turn reminds me of three things that I hate... History, Racism and the fact that even though, I am black, I'm too mixed and light skinned to be accepted by, well anybody, really. 


I don't know if I'm more upset that I don't fit in, or that I even care at all...


I mean I don't think anybody should care. Black history month and BET(for that matter) are both counter-productive. It just reminds everybody why we "hate" each-other. 

Plus we know all the stories, by now. This lady sat on a bus. This person marched there. PENUTBUTTER! Fuck it man.

As far as I'm concerned we are all like a bag of Skittles: We all taste the same on the inside.


What was I talking about? Oh, yeah. I'm a sad sack of shit.(fuck that)


I love video games. I always have, I always will. 


And, all I want to do is write you guys great blogs about video games. In spite of all my, admittedly not that bad (to most people) problems, I still want to bring a smile to the world. 



And yet, I sold all of my video games...

On one hand, it was a terrible decision that, I regret daily.(and, I hate regrets) 

While on the other hand, I feel like it was a masterful decision...


Now, along with the dropping of every last one of my vices(all due to financial fallacies), I'm being forced to deal with everything;


Confront my past and let it the fuck go, all at the same time. 


Eyes to the future. 





1:41 PM on 02.01.2015

Status Update...

What is a status update? Is it a misspelled joke? Perhaps it is some song lyrics, lovingly copied and pasted on to your "wall", with no context or even a corresponding video? Or, is it just somebody taking a selfie while making out with their girlfriend? 


"I love this girl so much." 

Well guess what Chad...


I don't care-

But, it's not because I hate you. I just feel that there is more to the story. Now, I'm not on some old-guy soap box here. I know the next generation will be fine. I'm not stuck in some time capsule, clinging on to the memories of "back in the day". 


Back in the day sucked. And, honestly I'm still fairly young myself. 25. 


And, you life has been nothing but change. 7 years out of school and I feel as if my whole education is outdated. I'm getting off track...


Why do you love your girlfriend? Was this selfie taken during a date? Where you stuck in some magical moment of love-all day? Does she ever piss you off. Or, is it really so sickeningly perfect?


Maybe I'm asking too many questions. But, guess what. They leave out too many answers. 



Destructoid, I love you. (gasp)


I love that when I scroll down the community blogs, I'm not just wasting my life with a myriad of nonsensical musings of 140 characters or less. 


You guys take the time to have a complete thought and give us a solid glimpse of your thought process. You guys have fascinating perspectives. You tell stories. You MAKE me care.


I know I'm guilty of incoherent thoughts and random lyrics sometimes. And, guess what...nobody cares.


My facebook post average 2 likes. And, those 2 or 3 likes are from people that know me in real life. They know the context. They know who I am. 


But, this isn't about likes. It's about expression. Everyone seems so repressed. It's maddening. I just want to understand how people feel. 


Everybody complains about their lack of privacy, but very few people actually share anything. They clasp onto their hopes and dreams, 

afraid of what people might say. 


Everyone fears being judged. But, life is mostly comprised of being judged in some way or another. 

I get it. Who doesn't feel vulnerable sometimes.


It's my new goal in life to put myself out there. I want to let people in. See me as a real person. I don't want to be another trading card in the social media game. 

I want to be funny. I want to be sad. Real. I want you to care. And if you don't, unlike me. It's okay. I'm getting off track again. (fuck)


I'm sick of mindlessly staring at walls and being cut out of the juicy details. I promise not to use it as ammunition. I'll use it for self reflection. I want to feel a connection and, I'm not on some hippy shit. (not that I judge) I just don't want to go through life not giving a shit and trying to read everybody's minds. 


I care. I really do.


I just wish people wouldn't treat their life like the front flap of a book. Tell me the story. 


I'll read it if I have time. 

Give me a status update.


5:15 AM on 01.21.2015

What have I done?!? (nvgr)

What have I done?


Hello Destructoid. I've been away for awhile...4 years.

Too long, indeed...



For the past seven years I have remained in this hell hole of a city doing my best to provide top notch customer service. I gave up on my dreams early and I've been trying to "be an adult". 


But, it hasn't really been working. 


I've had about twelve jobs, and I have been fired from each and every one of them. And, while it's cool that I can do anything in the world; I've yet to find an employer that gives a shit. Even though I have a resume and get hired for my, admittedly fudged, past experience- I keep having to start over.


I know what your thinking. "Chris, you must be some kind of an asshole." 


Now I will tell you,(just as I keep telling myself)..I'm not an asshole. 


Am I perfect? No. But, I really do care about my work. I come in on time...I don't complain about taking the trash out, or removing gum from tables, or licking toilets clean. 20 hour work weeks at $7.50 USD an hour. Life is awesome!


Contradictory sarcasm aside, I'm really not a problem at work. I'd work with me. Both from a co-worker's perspective and from my, yet, unachievable supervisory perspective. You could do a lot worse.


While I am to blame for my failures, It would have been great if just one of my past jobs would appreciate a guy having a bad day. Oh well...


What follows is a terrible example from my past circa 2008 and the only time I was reasonably and justly fired. Seriously. This shit hasn't happened since...



You see, my first job was at a water park as a lifeguard. It was a great job. 

In fact, with it's 13 hour days, 6 days a week I was making the most I have ever made at any of my jobs. I used some of this money to buy a brand new $479.99 Xbox Elite.


Alright, so I was 17, and I was trusted with people's lives. Now, that didn't keep me from sleeping vertically whilst "watching the kiddie pool". But, that isn't why I was fired. No, that happened a year later. 


See, somebody had "Snicker Bar'd" the lazy river. Whenever this would happen we would call a code brown (lol) and had to shut the river down and ask people to exit the water from any of the, let's say 9 exits.



It would be two hours before any of the pool boffins let anybody back in...


Once the water was clear of people, I was tasked with jumping back in the water to gather life-vests. Cool. So, on about my business I went; standing my ground in the rushing water gathering red vest, yellow ones, blue vest and green-and chucking them up onto the deck.


Now once the vest were out of the water, they had to be put on racks. The problem is, now people had formed a long line to the closed lazy river...(sigh).



This was the stupidest thing I had seen the guest do since it rained any everybody opened an umbrella.(water park)


Better yet, this line was directly between my giant collection of vest and their respective racks. So back and forth I went. 

"Excuse me"..."I just need to get by here"

"Pardon me"...(why won't they move? I look like "life-vest Voltron")

"Sorry about that" I said as I gently bump past a young lady.


Now, she must not have heard me because the next vest hauling trip- not only will she NOT move but, she squares up with me, crosses her arms and makes the most sickeningly rude face I had ever seen in my life. After two summer's of being a tight-Iipped, thought withholding customer service goon, I imagined cussing her out. But, I held back.


I painted a mental picture of what it would be like...

"Fuck you! You little bitch. Can't you see that I have a goddamned job to do. I'm holding 25 vest and they're heavy as shit! What is wrong with you!" 


I pictured a crowd gathering as I just spew raw emotion at this girl. I imagined some random dude would white knight the situation and challenge me to a duel in the parking lot. I imagined that security would actually show up for once. I imagined that I would be fired on the spot. I even imagined that I would be billed $100 USD for a pair of red swim shorts about a year later.


But, I was better than that. 


I decided to apologize once more and try to get by with some humility. Now, I don't remember what she said. But, I remember her NOT moving again.


Sooo...I said it. 


All of it. 


I roared it. 


And as the angry mob formed I started yelling at them. I began screaming at all of them.


"There are kids here!" One lady exclaimed as she brought her toddlers over to watch the scene unfold. 


"Fuck your kids!"(jesus)


It was at this point that the largest dude in the crowd threatened to end my life in the parking lot. I gave him a hearty middle finger as I backed down and left the situation, consciously deciding not to run. Now, I wasn't afraid of that dude. I was afraid of fighting a whole mob of Speedo-dudes. 



At the "debriefing", I learned that the cops had been called. I also learned that the bitch was only 15. 


Then, I learned that the 15 year old little bitch was also pregnant.


Then, I learned that the 15 year old little pregnant bitch apparently claimed that I hit her in the stomach.(nah, man) 


Looking back on it, the police never talked to me- at all. I think my boss was just being a dick.


It goes without saying that I got super-fired that day.

...billed $100 USD a year later. 


I'd like to say that I've calmed down since then. I'd like to say that I don't hold any resentment towards that 22 year old little bitch with the 7 year old. Fuck, I'd like to say that I don't hate that 7 year old.


But, I don't work in customer service anymore...




Also, I think I might be an asshole.




...I sold that Xbox 360 a week ago. What have I done?








5:45 PM on 01.18.2011

Hey, somebody drew on my shirt...(NVGR)

Hey gang!

It's everybody's favorite "dude I see on this site ocassionally", CrazEboy7!!!

Why so many exclamation marks you ask? Well after two months of waiting and wondering, I have finally gotten my Destructoid "Chill Bros" Shirt. And, It is super rad!

Since this excitement alone isn't really worthy of a blog. I figure I'll try my best to elaborate on why I love this shirt so much. It is a lovely shade of grey. This particular tone of gray really reminds me of sweatpants, which I'm a big fan of. But, more than that this grey makes me think of athletics, which I'm not particularly good at, but I enjoy the notion.

It also has the bastard lovechild of Mr. Destructoid and Mario Mario on the front of it, just daring somebody to say something snarky. While at the same time it's warmly inviting somebody to ask "what is that?" And, it also begs the question, "what is it from". But, I'll never have to answer that because the shirt proudly states "DESTRUCTOID" right there,under the cartoon, both legible and fun. Yet also, unobtrusive

Blog fluffing aside, I just want to thank Tara Long and ???????? for signing my shirt. I'm kinda bummed that I can't read ????????'s signature, but I appreciate the guesture anyway. And, Ms. Tara Long, you made my day. Without getting too sappy, this is the kind of thing that make this site fucking awesome!

...too sappy.   read

5:12 PM on 01.04.2011

All late with the TRON blog.[no spoilers, whatsoever]

Usually when I am really excited for a movie, I'm willing to give the video game a shot. I'll see the movie and I'll still be lost in that world for a few days. I want more. And, that where usually where video game tie-ins come in.

Now, I'm not totally clueless, I know that tie-in games are pretty much always "garbage", but I just can't help myself.

I've been hyped for the new TRON movie for at least a year. So, what chance did I have when TRON: Evolution came out about a week before the movie did? I got my hands on it. That's what I did.

Keep in mind that I had a very low expectation of the game. Based on trailers and gameplay footage, It appeared to be mediocre, at best. And, that it was. Yet, I thouroughly enjoyed it.

While playing the game, though, I was worried that the game may have marred my overall interpretation of the new TRON world that they are trying to convey.

I was way off in assuming that. In fact, not only was the movie better than the game in every possible way. It also seemed like a completely different "world". Similar, sure, but entirely different. It felt more real, i guess.

The movie sparked my imagination better that the game ever did, and I guess that's what made it better.

...or maybe it was the depth perception.   read

2:25 PM on 12.24.2010

Random loudmouths in video games...

I play games to get away from judgment. People are always judging. People are always hating. But, I'm not a rapper and such things aren't very useful to me. I play games whenever I feel the need to shake of such criticisms or at least toss them back and forth with a friend instead.

But there are a few games that seem to feel that it's absolutely necessary to mock me at every turn. It's usually extreme sports games that perpetrate the dickitude. It would be a bit more palatable if the insults were fresh and interesting. But, they are always so platitudinous. Lame.

For example, I was playing Stoked, which is a fairly boring snowboarding game. But, I enjoy simply gliding down a mountain and taking in the snowy vistas. I'm fine until I land wrong and roll down the hill a bit. But, why does the game feel the need to kick me while I'm down.

Some disembodied bro always pops up and chimes in with something like, "Woah, nice landing!" or, "Nice boner, Dork!". I'm paraphrasing, of course. And, when I decided to mute the speech volume in the game, I quickly became aware that there are text insults that pop up during failures as well. "That's gotta hurt!". Nice.

I've got a thick skin. In real life friendly banter and mockery actually can make a game better. But, nondescript in-game characters always comes off as bullying and/or irksome, when they attempt it. It's irritating and I see no use for it in video games where I don't at least get to shoot back, words or otherwise.

It's like when I open a box of cereal and lose a contest. I know that I'm "not a winner.". But, there is no need to rub it in my face every morning for a week. Of course, the best part of waking up is the coffee! It's not that hard for a cup of joe to be the favorite, when the cereal is being such a negative d-bag all of the time. Way to ruin my day cereal.

I guess I could just not play those games. But, they are usually otherwise pretty fun. Plus, what if I already bought it?

...Well, there goes my lunch money.   read

1:10 PM on 12.23.2010

Super Meat Boy, better with friends.

I don't like Super Meat Boy. There I said it.

Well, that actually might be an exaggeration. See, my opinion of that game is fully dependent on how well I am doing in the game. There are sometimes that I play it very well and love it. But, that is usually a fleeting feeling. Because eventually (and, by eventually, I mean to say "very quickly"), I lose my mojo and start to suck. Then, I get frustrated and stop having fun.

And, when I stop having fun, I gotta rage quit on that piece....yo.('nah mean, son?)

Anyway, it's not that I don't like hard games. I do. I just have to have a justifiable amount of fun while playing them. Or, at least no feeling of emotion at all.(which is actually fine with me, at times). But for me, Super Meat Boy is a great game that doesn't quite fit my ideal hardness to fun ratio.

That in mind, I did something rare the other day. I played side by side with somebody else. I'm usually a lonely wolf, but I had gone to visit one of my friends at his house to play Super Meat Boy before St. Nick lured him into a van with promises of candy and "good times".

My buddy, let's call him Jon, is a PC gamer. I've always been a console guy because it seems easier than upgrading grandmother boards and chocolate chips and boner drives. But, he tends to get by on two year old games and great deals on Steam. So I have always admired Jon for that. I, with my tiny dinosaur brain, bought TRON brand new. It had potential, what can I say?

His latest software addition to his rig was Super Meat Boy. I, being the grateful guest that I am, jumped on the opportunity to play a game with my bro, even though I secretly loath it. But, I had fun. Instead of me getting frustrated and hearing evil voices in my head, Jon and I exchanged witty banter and silently judged each other's skills. He was far superior to my skill set, at least on this particular game. But, Super Meat Boy is even more impressive, for me, when watching somebody with greater skill play it.

So, I guess the various morals would be that, the PC platform is pretty cool even though I am perfectly terrified by it's "evil upgrading" nature. Super Meat Boy along with other games are more fun to play with a friend by my side. And, finally, I need more friends in my wolfpack.


2:19 PM on 12.20.2010

Less upgrading. More shopping.

For this blog, I think I'm gonna start hard negative and then bring back the funk with some smooth positivity.

I hate upgrading stuff in video games! I was this close to writing that in all caps. I almost busted a nerve trying to control myself. My face is red and I feel a bit faint. Now is the perfect time to woo you with my totally logical points.

less of this

Why do developers feel the need to make me pause the game, scroll through some menus, and then make me spend some asinine form of points on upgrades. On one hand I don't even feel that weapons should need upgrades. A bullet is a bullet. Enemies shouldn't randomly become immune to my lead and then force me to acquire level 3 lead. It almost never makes sense.

But, on the other hand, sometimes it does make sense, when I come across a new enemy or something. Fine. But, can we have the weapons upgrade automatically? Please? It is so very tedious and boring to scroll through a menu and choose the next tier of weapons. At least let me choose the weapons I want or something. Not just the "next upgrade" weapon. That sucks. And, bringing a game to a standstill while I try to navigate unreadable HD text on my standard television is beyond frustrating.

It's a small gripe, sure. But, it is frustrating for me. I don't necessarily need a game to hand upgrades to me. If they can find a way to make upgrading fun and interesting then, I'm all for it. But, until then, I'd rather just nix the system all together.

On a somewhat different note,

I absolutely love shopping in video games. Except for a few series where it is pretty much necessary(The Sims), I'd prefer it be optional. I can see why some people would hate it, but for me it is always a nice change of pace for a shooter, or a racer, or whatever, to get a chance to relax and go shopping.

In Saint's Row 2, I spent hours just shopping around. Sometimes, I would pop the game in just to shop. It's fun to do that with video game money. It's way cheaper than using real money to shop and is often just as satisfying. It also goes back to my love for immersive game worlds and create a characters. Shopping for things, especially helpful things, can really do a game justice when pulling me in.

I do hope that more games put a bit more focus on the shopping experience. As it stands, load times and limited use of items prevents shopping from being all it can be. Shopping often creates a welcomed new layer of interactivity. And, when it works, this game withing a game formula is something I can get behind, and I hope to see more of it.

Of course, there are games that have gotten both the upgrades and the shopping right, I'm sure. I bet, I have missed some gems in both instances. But, it's something that I don't often read about when new games are advertised. It's a bummer, but at the same time developers are always going on about something fun. So, there's that.   read

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