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About
Welcome to my blog. Have a goddamn seat.


My name's Dan. I joined the Destructoid Forums four years ago. I'm a moderator there now. Come down and say things to us. You'll float, too.


An artist's rendition of my "Rape Genie" persona

"Nihil" is the pseudonym I use for writing / gaming on the internet. I came across Destructoid by searching for information on Way of the Samurai 3. Tubatic had the most comprehensive coverage on it I'd seen anywhere.

For that, and for leading me to this awesome community, I thank him.




I started gaming in kindergarten, when the most advanced piece of hardware I could get my hands on was a black plastic handle and an orange button attached to a brick. I used it to blow up little squares on a black and white television screen. A couple years later, I was molested by the girl next door after beating her copy of The Legend of Zelda. I have mixed feelings about the experience.

Unfortunately, over the years, my ability to maintain a passion for games has waned (as in being able to play through them start-to-finish). This is due to various reasons and issues that would be too emo to get into at this juncture. But even though my passion has waned, my interest in them has not, thanks in great deal to the extraordinary friends I've made during my stay here.


Laminated avatar from Cblog Mom Elsa

Handcrafted avy from forum Mom Zodiac Eclipse

I am an element of Dtoid according to professor Corduroy Turtle

Friday Night Fight version of me by Mikey Turvey

Dtoid Card: Rebirthening Edition by Last Scion, Phil, and Marche100

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PAX 2011: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3
The Fall of a Hardcore Gamer
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10 Reasons

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-ISMS... with Me: Random and possibly entertaining musings on video games and various bullshit.
Permadeathisms...
Productivisms...
REvilisms...
Neoisms...
Malisms...
Cynicisms...
Dualisms...
Empiricisms...
Feminisms...
Masochisms...
Dan Carterisms...
Nihilisms...

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It's been 2 years since the last one, and getting close to a year since my reintroduction post. So thanks to Jonny B, here you go, internet. See the exposed, rusting gears and shoddy wiring that is my fucking brain. Be amused. Be afraid. Be a dear and fetch me a hot glue gun to shove up my giant goddamn nose.

1/ Echoing the "I'm always right/gender roles" thing: There are a lot of things I hated about the values instilled by archaic gender/racial stereotypes. Granted, in days of yore I took pride in winning fights against bullies, getting girls numbers, and never blacking out while drinking. The kind of MAN shit that other males look up to you for, and give you a hell of a confidence/self-esteem boost.

But again, that was learned behavior. That's not the whole story of me. And the typical response I'd get from others when I revealed more of myself, was an affirming or lambasting "You're weird!" See, I didn't choose to become an outsider. And by most counts, I wasn't. But when you hear that "you weirdo" shit over and over again, you start to feel like one regardless. Like your opinion doesn't count or is the wrong one. Or you're right, and everyone else is wrong. The pressure to either become one of "them" or walk my own path was overwhelming at times...

Maybe I should like basketball. Everyone always seems so upset when I tell them I don't. Like it's so fucking unheard of for a black guy to not love basketball.

Maybe I should want to fuck all the conventionally attractive girls. Because I'm either a pussy or gay for not having an animalistic libido. Those are apparently the ONLY reasons I'd ever not wanna bang a hot chick. Totally. No, I get it.

Maybe I should watch reality television... Y'know what? FUCK YOU.

I'd apologize, but really, that would be disingenuous. If I'm to keep what little sanity I have left over from living in a half-broken home, I can't care about your fucking opinion if it's still at a high school level of non-acceptance. I just can't. Find a cool black friend that you can show off to people so they can see how fucking hip you are elsewhere. You goddamned sheep.


2/ I still get called out for using big words, while at jobs where most of my coworkers barely speak engish, much less have a penchant for verbosity. It's not like I'm fucking trying, it just comes out like that sometimes! On the flip-side, sometimes I fumble over my sentences (when my brain wants to move faster than my mouth) and can't carry a convo to save my damn life. But that's the nature of dealing with anxiety and a shitty memory. As I said last time, I can't keep all that jargon in my head at all times. Creating layman definitions helps a lot, e.g. ostensibly means "pretty much". Arbitrary means "random bullshit". Those aren't too assholey to say out loud, are they?

It also hurts that I'd still like to learn Latin. Like old school latin, fuckin Illuminati style.

WORDS, BITCH.

3/ I hope on moving to Seattle by the end of the year. I say "hope" and not "plan" 'cause there is no real plan yet. The closest to that is my desire to ceremoniously leave southern california behind by getting rid of all my loans and debts I started here, then set aside a nice chunk of savings for the ordeal, and acquire a transferable and tolerable gen. labor job... and that's about it.

Idk how I'd adjust out of my current hermit lifestyle, and give a shit about exploring a new city again. I've kind of dug myself in over this past winter, again, and suffice to say it's been quite a fight trying to get out. But the hope is that since I'd be physically closer to friends, leaving the house (and life in general) will feel less and less like voluntarily ripping duct tape off my scrotum.


4/ I don't like going to the movies alone anymore. I used to be a hardcore film buff; up to date with an opinion on everything current and working my way through the all the classics. Theater-hopped like there was no tomorrow, staying for the credits to absorb cast/crew names like a sponge. Watched every dvd extra and listened to every commentary track. Bought I don't know how many original soundtracks. I used to pride myself on having all that knowledge and trivia in my head, and being able to whip it out on a moment's notice.

But thanks to certain events that put my dysthymia into overdrive, that passion dried out over the years, not unlike my attitude towards gaming. I don't get the same level of enjoyment out of it as I did before, so it does not feel like there's a point to it anymore. Not unless I can share the experience - the memory - with a friend, and that prospect is way more fulfilling than anything a movie by itself can make me feel these days. That's the only way I think it'll feel special to me again. Apart from that, anything new I watch is simply an entertaining distraction, waiting to be mostly discarded. So I usually don't bother. Although... There is still one specific thing I care about from those days...

5/ I fucking love epic action scores. Whether its orchestral or electronic, if the composer understands when and how to hit those notes using the right sounds, and put a big emotional sweep somewhere in there, it literally gives me shivers, every goddamn time. I covered my love of this kind of music in gaming, and nothing has changed there either. Youtube has been a constant blessing for finding this stuff, and it's my go-to for shit playing on loop when I websurf. I appreciate great music in all of its forms (except country), but nothing does it for me quite like shit by Two Steps From Hell, Future World Music, Audiomachine, or the myriad of award-winning composers you've heard of if you're remotely a fan of movie scores.

Akin to film, video games, and like the few books I've finished, when done right it transports me to a fantastical place that I never want to leave...




6/ I've made a bet with myself to get the Aperature Science logo tattooed around my right shoulder after beating the Portal games; an outline after beating the first, and filled in when I finish the second.


This is another thing that stems back from when I really cared and was somewhat idealistic. I played Portal on The Orange Box, before it became a big deal to every nerd and their keffiyeh-wearing dog. I knew it was something special, despite it feeling like half a game, but I never thought it would take off in popularity like it did. Then again, I wasn't terribly familiar with Valve because I never played Half Life or anything else by them at the time, so in hindsight I realize that had a lot to do with it feeling so unexpected.

But here's the rub: I'm not great at puzzles. Not bad, just not great, since it takes me a bit longer to figure out shit that isn't glaringly easy to solve. So by the time I'd ran into the first test that really had me burning brain cells, I was already distracted by another game - most likely Mass Effect. Since then, I've tried restarting it maybe a dozen times and I never get any further. It's been a perpetual sore spot, more than any other game that I left unfinished, that I've never been able to just sit down and fuck that game in the ass, but I'm going to fucking do it. Sometime, somehow, I'm gonna shove my harpoon in that white whale's blow-hole.

When the boom hit, it was virtually impossible to avoid plot spoilers and memes. Even though I hadn't beaten it, I understood even from what chunk I'd played why it was lauded and I believed, still believe, it deserved every once of it. It's an epitome of artistic accomplishment, using minimalistic narratives and innovative gameplay. And it may be stupid, but I take pride in the fact that I understood that before it rightfully became a (sub)cultural phenomenon and spawned a more-than-worthy sequel.

videogames

7/ Going back to movies, my ten favorite are: Bringing Out The Dead, Dark City, Brick, Hellraiser, The Way of the Gun, SLC Punk, The Dark Knight, Cube, Crank, and Ninja Scroll.

In that order.

8/ I hope to play a decent, or even good game of Arkham Horror with other Dtoiders. I've played a tabletop game of this kind a maximum of once in my entire life (D&D 3.5), and it was an enjoyable experience. But from what I've read of the rules for Arkham Horror, that shit sounds way up my alley.


I'm known in the forums' Werewolf threads for hosting games based on Lovecraftian mythos. I think it's safe to say that most of the stories I've completed reading in recent years are from HP Lovecraft - yet another thing you can go ahead and call me weird for. But dude had some fucking ingenious ideas, and exploring the philosophy of horror from his lens has been intriguing, to say the least. The nature of insanity is kind of a big deal to me, as you will read in a minute...

9/ I self-medicate using cannabis, and still on the fence how to feel about it. The concept used to sound ridiculous to me. All I knew or cared to know before my first nervous breakdown was that you used it to get faded at kickbacks, same as any other rec drug. But now I use it to keep from thinking about killing myself literally every other fucking minute. My sober brain naturally goes to that dark place when left undistracted, and it becomes a chore to interact with anybody face-to-face, because that's what's on my mind 24/7, along with all the other social anxieties that make waiting to die seem more viable than living.

It's just funny to me with the stigma around the whole stoner culture, which I could care less about (sorry Snoop fans), that it's being "recognized" as medicinal and relatively harmless on a mainstream level, even though it's still technically illegal. But whatever. I got tired of going from therapist to therapist, and pills are an even worse option, if you ask me. You're basically a guinea pig until they stumble upon the right pill and the right dosage of it. And even then, you'll likely still have to deal with side effects. Which you have to take another pill for. I didn't run the gauntlet long before figuring that one out.

Best way to say it is that weed makes things really simple: acquiring it, taking it, and reaping the benefits, so that I can do something productive with my time. Like writing this dumb blog, for instance.

Yes, instead of making me a lazy couch surfer like almost everyone thinks weed does, it actually helps me get off my ass and get shit done. Not necessarily while I'm high, since of course my motor skills go out the door before I do. But the clarity and focus I get afterward is unquestionable. I know that not everyone is comfortable with it, so I don't run around advocating legalization or whatever. It doesn't feel like my place to do that, to be honest. All I'll do is tell you how it works for me on a personal level.

Ultimately, the goal is to be healthy and stable without it when I finally get my life in a manageable spot, but I'm painfully aware that may not be possible. There is no cure for being fucked in the head this badly, unless you want to become an entirely different person than who you were. At this point though, after what I've been through, after the choices I've made... attempting to do that would be a disservice. A big part of why I am the way I am, is due to hostile reactions to my presence in this world. If I were to forget all of that, I wouldn't be as smart as I am now. And knowledge is a great weapon for self-defense and survival.


10/ You can go now. Seriously. I'm done. I can't think of anything else worth telling you about. I mean, I could but I've spent enough time on this, and I kind of need to find a new job before the end of the month, so that's what I'll be spending a lot of energy on if I'm not around in the coming days. Because as you know, shit's hard out here for a pimp... Or something.

Thanks for reading. Catch ya on the flip.



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