"We constantly have to revisit 'Why would Donkey Kong do this?' or 'Why would this environment be like this?' And then we start thinking: 'We're making a game about a gorilla wearing a tie.'"
-Michael Kelbaugh of Retro Studios on Donkey Kong Country Returns
"I have to say it's kinda scary how much you know about this game."
-Nicolau Chaud creator of Marvel Brothel
Ugh...I am tired. I left the hospital not too long ago because my Mom is having chest pains and her PCP refused to see her. EKG/Bloodwork shows nothing serious, but they are keeping her overnight for observation purposes. She's kinda pissed about that.
I've been tired all week. It's like my brain just isn't working intelligently and I can't get it to click on. My head knows what it needs to do, but mid-sentence the words drop off. It's debilitating when you have an idea for a time sensitive piece and nothing you write want to write can come out of your fingers.
I figured I needed a brain dump and well, this is where my brain gets dumped. Apologies in advance.
I'm going to South by South West (SXSW) this weekend which is partially why I'm tired. I've been pulling extra hours to get time off for the weekend so I can cover it. I'll be staying at my sister's place since she has to get together with her band mates to practice for the first time since she left for American Idol.
Since she doesn't perform at SXSW til Thursday, I've got a place to crash all by my lonesome which is nice. This means I can finally make time for a Dtoid NARP. I hear those things are...well things, so it'll be a pleasure to experience it. Huge kudos to whoever is running the thing (Sean Carey?). I'll look it up tomorrow. Still, that guy (or gal since I haven't met you) that's hosting it is awesome. I'll try not to mess up your house.
I kinda wish SXSW were cheaper. The interactive event runs $900+ for panels which is a bit ridiculous. However, the majority of gaming things happen at ScreenBurn which is free. So...while I don't get to see some awesome Funimation panels, I do get to see them at the Funimation happy hour and booth for everything else. Hopefully I can trick them in to literally translating everything their panel discussed in like a 5 minute conversation.
I guess this whole brain dump thing is to clean me out before I take in SXSW. Hope it works so I can play through some Starhawk with a clear head.
I've also been a bit in the creative spirit recently. After Wolfire ran their Humble Mojam Bundle, I began testing some of the techniques I had seen over their live stream. While I couldn't code a game to save my life, I have been playing around with XNA a bit.
Using some coding offered by Oneksoft and a few others, I think I have starter code for a bare bones platformer I can tweak. This means literally nothing without a real sit down to understand the code, but I have a start. From there, I've been doing a bit of pixel work for a silly game idea I came up with.
I'm calling it the Kite right now, and since I don't have much to show for it, I'm going to leave it as is. Maybe one day I'll have a real game to show you all (or more realistically, I'll have an unfinished mess on my computer for years).
I did however make a game for Pirate Kart this year. Well, by game I mean level, but you get the idea. Originally, there was a collaboration Knytt Level that I just couldn't get open for some reason on my laptop. Instead of quitting, I just made an entire level myself after asking around.
I wanted to base it on some pixel art and big exploration. I wish I had more time to work on it, but in Glorious Trainwreck fashion, I put it up under a deadline to let it be judged by all those real developers at GDC.
I think it's a really cool thing to be able to put an event together that just takes any game made in a short bit of time and showcase it in front of the biggest creators in the industry. I really would like to think that people like Cliffy B, Phil Fish, and Yoshiro Kimura sat down to play some of these.
So download it and judge it. I worked hard trying to create a theme built around the concept of twins in gaming and I made a really large level in a short amount of time.
Speaking of stuff I did, I wrote an article on Avengers vs X-men. I'm not sure I'd consider it something to be proud of, but the article was a lot of fun to write. Probably the most fun I've had writing in a while. It essentially was a history project on both the official Avengers vs X-men crossovers, but it was really all an excuse to talk about the first trade I ever owned.
It's one of my favorite books in my collection, mostly because absolutely nothing about it was familiar when I first read Marvel books in the early 90s. The X-men have Mohawk Storm who has no powers, Magneto in a cabana shirt and a dude named Dr. Druid on the Avengers. It's a book trapped in a bizarre chunk of history where lots of things should be explained out, but its really not necessary.
The one thing I did begin to notice between the two crossovers is that it features both the strongest and weakest Avengers teams ever assembled. I mean seriously.
Weakest Avengers Team ever: Black Panther, Hawkeye, Giant Man and the Wasp
Strongest Avengers Team ever: Captain Marvel, Captain America, Thor, Dr. Druid, She-Hulk, and Black Knight
I used the article as a stepping stone to catch me up on the AvX event this spring as I'm kinda getting an itch to read some comic books again. Like on a regular basis. I'm a bit tepid at burning through AvX as the kick off to getting back in to the painfully expensive habit that comics has become, but it does seem like an interesting thing to read.
I've been watching a lot of Netflix and not playing games recently. I think I've tapped the well on everything I want to actually see, so I tried out Archer and Better Off Ted. Surprisingly, I have enjoyed these.
Better Off Ted's first season was masterful. It was brilliant, smart, and had a nice little love triangle thing testing the waters. I was almost happy to say it was the worst cancellation I had ever seen in the history of television. Then I watched what was season 2 and I was starting to get it. The show was still cute and funny, but it lost a lot of the brilliance the original series brought.
In essence, it got lazy. Characterization started to become unfocused and they started hitting line drives instead of home runs with the comedy. It was still a quirky show and kinda fun, but that was all.
Archer on the other hand I tried on a whim. I hate H. Jon Benjamin (the voice of Sterling Archer) in almost every single role he plays. He just pulls me out of the shows I'm watching. Nothing against the man, it's just the phonetics of his voice seem to do that.
I didn't seem to have that issue with Archer. I don't know why, I just think the way his tone is paced works excellently with Benjamin's role. Archer is surprisingly witty? Smart? That's not really it. I'm kinda drawing a blank on this one. It's surprising.
It's surprising me, which is always a compliment. I'm not sure if the show will grow legs like Venture Brothers or not, but so far I'm enjoying it. Now if only I had FX to watch the current season.
That I guess is all I've got on my mind. Mass Effect 3 has dropped and I know you kids are all playing it. I might do the same one day, but for right now I'm just tired. The multiplayer deal is turning me off since I'm forced in to buying this on a console that doesn't play online unless I pay it to.
I just don't feel the want to finish the fight. I'm not overly impressed with the single player ME3 demo and I'm having to replay Mass Effect 2 to get to the Arrival DLC to learn specifically what's connecting the two. I'm not really stoked to play ME2 again as it is long and excessively repetitive.