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Title: Finished my challange review - kinda
Posted: February 27, 2010 (10:02 PM)
Blah. I always find myself writing under limited time conditions that make it impossible to produce something that really reflects my abilities. I'm definitely gonna have to go back to this one some time, since it still screams first draft.
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Title: Dante's Inferno
Posted: February 10, 2010 (12:00 PM)
The more I see of this game, the more I find myself wanting it. At this point I think I actually want it more than Darksiders, Bayonetta, or God of War III. It looks absolutely incredible. I watched a video of a Cerberus boss that looked like it was inspired by something out of Berserk.

I feel this way even though the reviews so far have been pretty mixed. Most of the complaints I've heard in them sound like they could be easily directed at God of War as well though.
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Title: I'm hungover but this song warms my heart like nothing else
Posted: January 29, 2010 (01:21 PM)
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Title: Tried out Uncharted 2 for the first time
Posted: January 26, 2010 (02:51 PM)
Chloe's eyes are fucking stupid.
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Title: Upcoming 3D Castlevania game
Posted: January 22, 2010 (01:26 PM)
Just found out about it from GameTrailer's list of most anticipated games from 2010, and I'm strangely excited about a Castlevania game for the first time in my life. Anyone else interested in it?
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Title: So I saw Avatar
Posted: January 13, 2010 (07:17 PM)
My initial reaction was that I liked it "quite a bit." I was hesitant to say that I liked it "a lot," but felt that it deserved more than a simple "I liked it." Hope that's not too confusing. The more I think about it though, the more I like it.

I looked the movie up on wikipedia and saw something strange:

"Many have reported experiencing psychological depression and suicidal thoughts upon the realization that the lush and verdant world presented in the movie does not exist."

At first I thought this was ridiculous, and section to which this sentence belonged (titled "health effects") has been removed entirely between the time I checked the article last night and the time of the writing of this blog entry, less than 24 hours later.

Psychological depression and suicidal thoughts are probably exaggerations, but I would say that I felt a little sad, and that was indeed one of the reasons. I think the main reason I felt sad though actually had more to do with the plot formula the movie uses, which goes something like this: a character has a mediocre, unexciting and unsatisfying life; the character is, by circumstance or by providence, thrust into an entirely different life; this new life makes the character truly happy, which in turn makes the viewer/reader/player happy for the duration of the story; finally, this life is threatened by an outside force and must be fought for.

It's a really good formula, because when executed well enough, it can make you really invested in the characters, it appeals to many of our own desires to leave behind mediocre lives for more exciting ones, and because it can, at least temporarily, make us feel incredibly happy. Avatar certainly isn't the only work of fiction that uses this formula. Without thinking too hard about it, Harry Potter fits the formula too, and I'm sure there are plenty of other works of fiction that do as well.

On an entirely different matter, I just watched this trailer and am for some reason now very excited about FFXIII:

http://www.gametrailers.com/video/international-trailer-final-fantasy/60729
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Title: A Recently Unearthed Memory
Posted: January 11, 2010 (07:03 PM)
When I was young, my parents took me to see Santa Claus at a local mall. I must have been pretty young, because it was before I decided that I was an atheist, and before video games became my primary mode of play. Another reason I must have been pretty young was that I spent several days prior to seeing Santa Claus looking through toy catalogues, writing up very long lists of everything I wanted. Since I was not yet into video games as much as I would be a few years later, the list was predominated by different lego sets. There are at least two different years in which I did this, and each list literally contained several dozen items. I didn't expect Santa to get me everything on the list; I just wanted to give him a wide range of choices. Considering how religiously I did this, I must have actually believed at the time that Santa was the one who got me presents too, instead of my parents.
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Title: Anyone reviewing any upcoming releases?
Posted: January 06, 2010 (11:17 AM)
Just curious to see what you guys think of certain upcoming games. At this point I think I'm mainly interested in hearing what anyone here would have to say about Darksiders, Bayonetta or Dante's Inferno.
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Title: My Alpha entry
Posted: January 04, 2010 (06:07 AM)
Baten Kaitos

After writing this review, I look at it and think, "man, this is a fantastic first draft, I wish I had started much earlier." It was a rush job, I wrote about 90% of it on the day of the deadline, though it seems I'm not alone in this regard. I'm a little disappointed with the turnout for this contest, but I know very well that shit happens. I just barely showed up myself.
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Title: 2010 Contribution Goals -- stolen from Felix
Posted: December 29, 2009 (01:30 AM)
2009 was the first year since 2005 that I submitted a review to HonestGamers. In the interim I submitted some screenshots, some cover art, and even a guide or two.

I submitted only three reviews in 2009, and for 2010 I plan to uh, at least triple that. In absolute terms this is a pretty modest goal, but considering my habits I think it's a reasonable bar to set without being too ambitious. It will start with my Alpha review in about a week, but I think most of my writing will probably occur after I graduate in May. It's too difficult to write during the school year, but hopefully post-graduation life will give me a little more time to write.

My contribution plan is primarily writing oriented, and within that context it will primarily be review oriented. I have submitted screenshots and cover art in the past, and they're comparatively easy to do, but I want to focus on writing now. Back at GameFAQs, before I discovered the community, I mostly mass produced reviews in a very mechanical manner, basically writing sectioned reviews without section headers. I had a relatively high output during this period.

After I began learning about writing from reading RotD's I slowed down dramatically and became very interested in actually learning about the craft and process of writing, instead of just doing it mechanically. I learned and developed too much in this time for it all to disappear from four years of disuse, but I do feel a little hazy and unsure about how to structure and organize things, and what information to include and exclude. Technically, I did write papers during my five years at college, and that may have helped somewhat, but I went about them in a mechanical manner similiar to the one I originally approached reviews with.

Unfortunately, I can't yet afford a current gen console, and even when I do I don't know that I'll be spending $60 on new games. I've always been about buying games later so that I can pay $10 for them, and few games have compelled me to pay the original price at or around the time of release. This means I likely won't cover the newest games, and will mostly do semi-retro coverage (mostly one or two generations behind).

Jason showed me a site statistics page though, which says that only 12% of the games in the database have reviews written for them. I hope to review a few uncovered games even if they aren't especially recent ones. I do expect to write a guide or two, but I mostly intend to write reviews, both to help this site and for my personal development.
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Title: Christmas loot
Posted: December 25, 2009 (05:47 PM)
Car keys
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Title: Modern Warfare 2 looks funny
Posted: December 19, 2009 (01:23 PM)
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Title: Personal Private Link site
Posted: December 15, 2009 (12:51 AM)
So I made a private site with just links of important websites. I did this because my laptop is dead and it will be at least another six months (and more likely longer than that) until I have a new personal computer of my own. I already have like 30 different links but I still feel like there's something missing. I seem to have this problem a lot in life, like there's always something that's important but I just can't think of it or remember it.

What sites does everyone else visit regularly?
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Title: More college life stuff
Posted: December 08, 2009 (10:32 PM)
Sandro: So you're a graduating senior man, how you feelin' about that?

Andrew: Um, I'm having some mixed feelings, like the contradiction of getting tired of something even though you have really good memories of it. Usually expressed as "getting over it."

Sandro: It's not really getting over it. It's that it was good when it happened, but I've changed.

Andrew: Exactly.

Sandro: I don't really live my life that way, just in moments of clarity.

Andrew: Like when you're high.

I hope my drug-inspired musings aren't annoying people too much. Tomorrow night is the last officially organized party for the semester in my 150-student coop house. After that that it's just finals for everyone. All of mine are take-home, which I'm supposed to be working on right now, but I'm procrastinating as usual.

In some sense I've made school difficult for myself by living in this place. It makes college life a struggle to maintain the virtually impossible balance between the life of excess of the coop and the life of discipline of the classroom. Considering where I go to school and where I live at that school, both of these go to an extreme. Some people move out because it's too much for them. There are times when it's too much for me and I have to withdraw temporarily. And there are also times when I think nothing in the world could possibly be better, and those are the times that I stay for.

On a much less serious and more mundane note, I recently made a list of my favorite video game characters, and it turned out rather strange:

Marth
Ganondorf
Captain Falcon
Falco Lombardi
Alex (Lunar SSSC)
Hiro (Lunar EBC)
Kyle (Lunar SSSC)
Ronfar (Lunar EBC)
Jim Raynor
Siegfried Schtauffen
Ashley Riot

In rough order. Perhaps the most interesting thing is that my fondness of the top four characters is entirely based on their appearance in SSBM. In fact, for the top three I have never even played the actual games they starred in.
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Title: MDMA
Posted: December 06, 2009 (03:10 PM)
I found inner peace last night. It was very poetic, a little cold though.
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