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It's the laugh, I think. That mocking, haunting laugh. It tears at the soul like a fat kid tears at a chocolate cake or some other sweet confection, devouring it until there is nothing left but crumbs and a few blobs of icing that didn't get consumed. It haunts you. It mocks you, but not only you. It mocks your very existence. I finally managed to silence it. That laugh shall haunt me no more.

I have finally beaten Soda Popinski in Punch Out!! (Feat. Mr. Dream. Laym).

The battle was a harsh one, with Little Mac putting Soda to the mat first in a flurry of miniature punches. Soda responded in kind, shortly before the first bell signified the end of the round. It was back to our corners.

"He's hurt me, doc!" Mac exclaimed. His mouth tasted like pennies, his words coming out slurred. "Join the Nintendo Fun Club today!" exclaimed the Doc. What fantastic advice, you asshole.

Round two starts. Mac strikes quickly and swiftly, shucking and dodging like a good boxer should. Like a smaller, whiter Mohamed Ali or George Foreman. "I'll fuck you until you love me!" Mac exclaimed, landing a jaw-crushing uppercut and sending Soda to the mat once more. Mario steps in and begins the count. Soda is up in 5. There's almost too much fight left.

Soda charges in, smelling like a bear soaked in bathtub vodka and swinging like something that can only be viewed on fuckingmachines.com (NSFW, btw). He nails Mac with a barrage of crushing blows and sends him to the mat. Mario once again begins counting. Mac regains his feet at the 3-count. The bell rings again.

Mac is hurt. His eyes are swelling shut. He's missing some teeth. He's woozy and more than a bit sick and his ears are ringing. "I can't win, Doc." Mac speaks slowly now, like the kids in the special ed. classroom. "You can do it, Mac!" the Doc replies. "Keep your guard up!" Gee, thanks, Captain Obvious. Fucking jerk. Why did he hire him? The bell rings. Round 3. Final round. All or nothing. His head clears as he stands up and marches back into the ring.

Screaming like a man who is having his nuts twisted together by an angry badger, Mac starts swinging. Left, right, left, right. Over and over. Dodging when needed, blocking when needed. He can barely see. His vision turns crimson for a moment as the blood drains into his eyes only to be blinked back moments later. The drunk Russian isn't fairing much better, having earned the ire of Little Mac and his Fists of Glory. Mac is a man possessed. Soda just cannot hit him. Soda hits the mat once, only to get up at the 5-count and greet the mat again only seconds later. He's clearly underestimated the little white kid from New York with the retarded cornerman.

Slurring caused not only by the massive quantities of potato water but by Mac's fists, Soda charges back in swinging, hitting Mac square in the chin, trying to set up the tiny pugilist for a vicious right hook, but Mac is just too fast, and dodges. Soda knows he's going down, and sees Mac's eyes light up at the opportunity, like a little robot that you'd buy for a child. His grin looks sadistic, soaked in blood and abnormally pushed out by the guard. Soda accepts his fate, and it's only seconds before he starts feeling the punches land on his stunned, tank-shell shaped head. He drops to the mat, unable to get up. Mario steps in, declaring Mac the winner of the bout by Technical Knock Out.

Little Mac, unable to stand under his own power any longer, staggers back to his corner and plunks himself down on the stool. Spitting his mouth guard into the bucket, along with a gout of blood and several teeth, his gaze sways over to the Doc.

"Can I have my bike back now, please?"
Photo








News has started popping up on the intertubenets that the copy protection used in 2K game's latest offering, Bioshock (which is some kind of big deal or something), is only allowing users to register the game twice before shutting them down.

Angry gamers over at the 2k Games forum are voicing their concerns over the seemingly harsh methodology applied for copy protection via SecuROM

Steam users aren't getting much slack either, so going the Steam route is just as useless in the end.

Honestly, I can understand that companies feel the desire to protect their IPs. They've come up with them, nurtured them like children, and want to protect them like normal parents protect their children. However, normal parents don't go out and beat the hell out of anybody who may want to mess with their children and . . . this metaphor is getting too long winded, but you get the point, right?

When it comes to protecting your intellectual property, companies are more than entitled to do so. However, in doing so, you should not be screwing over the people who put food on your table. When you do things like this, people are even more apt to pirate your games.

What this boils down to? Buy the Xbox 360 version, and you don't have to deal with industry bullshit.

Update Brian Crecente's Hair Palace has an update on this particular newsbite from Elizabeth over at 2K Games. She writes:

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hey guys,

first, let me say this. you DO NOT NEED TO USE THE INTERNET EVERY TIME YOU PLAY THIS GAME. it is only the first time.

second, you can uninstall and reinstall this game, and if, by chance, you have 2 computers you want to simultaneously play this game on, you also can do that.

if by some chance you are reinstalling this game without uninstalling it first, a lot, there is a chance you may have to call securom and get a key, or deactivate some older installations.

but if you upgrade your hardware next week, you'll still be able to play the game. if you revamp your system and need to reinstall bioshock, just uninstall it before you go through the overhaul, and then do your reinstall.

calling it "hardware fingerprinting" is a bit alarmist. we do not transmit any of your data to any companies.

really, the only people who will be concerned about any of these security measures are those who are rapidly putting bioshock on many pcs... if you use the game as you normally do, you won't notice this at all.

----------

So there you have it. They're not ready to throw us in jail quite yet, they're just making sure our tracking collars are securely attached and functioning.








Well, I'm sick of the new sidebar telling me to get off of my ass and do this thing, and considering I've fielded all of five phone calls today, I figure I've pro'lly got a bit of time to devote to this thing. That, and the PS3 contest thing sounds like a slice of alright pie with a scoop of vanilla win on top, I figure I'll give this a go. But perhaps I should introduce myself to the readers of the community blogs. Bear with me, folks. Here we go.

The name that was chosen for me at the great Name Selection Screen of life was Karl. I've been playing games in some capacity or another for about 20 years. When I was younger, I didn't have the appreciation I have for it now, however, leading me to believe that gaming just gets better as you get older. I long for the day when I can sit down with my kids and school them in some Quake, kick them from the server and tell them it's dinner time.

The first console system I cut my teeth on was the NES when I was 5 years old or so, and it's been go ever since. Console, PC, tabletop CCGs, I'll play just about anything once.

That's the long and short of it. You can find out more in this post on the forum.