Saturday, April 28, 2012

Burn Jita: Sound and Fury Signifying Nothing or Something More?

Jita is one of the main trade hubs in High Security (HighSec) space in EVE Online and Goonswarm and their allies began launching large scale assaults there yesterday, in a a move titled "Burn Jita".  Today, this evening is when the full assault would begin and last through the weekend.  The reason behind this attack is (that I've been able to suss out) an attempt to shake up an economy that's grown stagnant and a High Sec populace who are under the impression they have some security in High Sec.  Also, because they can. This has made news across the gaming community from EuroGamer to Kotaku and of course the forums are all a flutter with trolling/counter-trolling/pseudo-Occupy rhetoric/"The Sky is Falling" and assorted game mumbo jumbo.  Hell, I'm suddenly up to my knees in EVE again. 

While I do not support or endorse any of Goonswarm's schemes or piracy I am fully impressed with their logistical abilities (not to mention coordinating such a massive operation).  I also support their anti-bot rhetoric.  However it is CCP and their "let the players do it" attitude that really impress me.  EVE is not an easy or forgiving game and as a sissy carebear I spent a lot of time paranoid and eventually never ventured into low or nullsec (especially as I grew further from the "never fly more than you're willing to lose" mentality).  New Eden is a scary place.  CCP keeps it a scary place, it allows Goonswarm to attack the heart of trade in New Eden, and allows schemes, double-dealing, fraud, and multitudes of virtual Madoffs and Toecutters a wide latitude of action.  And that's awesome.  I can't wait to see what happens after this.  Hell I might get back in the pool once and for all instead of being a sissy pisspants.

An aside:

I certainly think the entire "Burn Jita" assault could be more effective if they had just attacked and not said anything about it.  As it is, traders had fair warning and since space stations can't be destroyed their stuff is safe and some can trade remotely between stations.  Hell, in the time I played I never went to Jita.  I always heard it was a spammer shithole to make Nar Shaadar look good so I just never bothered.  My forecast is that while yes a lot of ships are being destroyed (even more so than usual in Jita) - a glance at EVE-Kill shows that most of the ships are garbage noobships and pods (though I'd rather lose my ship than get podded) or the slew of Goonswarm Tornadoes that ate it between 20:51 and 21:22 (apparently they use a Red Chinese human wave attack style aka Zerg Rush or 'Nids).  I'm curious in the long run how this is going to make a serious change to EVE and New Eden.  I can see how this might lead to a decentralization of trade (which isn't) a bad thing but it won't mean much in the long run.  Attacking Jita certainly won't collapse or destroy the economy of EVE (though I'm kind of curious how many people are going to rage quit or suspend their account until the mess blows over).

NAT GEO Space Pics: It's full of rubber chickens.

Camilla picture: a rubber chicken in space

Well, who'da thunk?

Looks like an old paper I wrote about Segregation in 1930s Chicago is being used as a source for an AP English class in Denver.  Woo, high fives to me.  Is this how it feels like when you get cited for the first time?

Assorted news and reviewy tasting things

Right out of the gate I have to say this:

Fez is awesome and if you're into puzzler/platformers then check this game out right god damn now. It's a 2D game that gets shifted into a 3D game and I kind of can't describe it but it works. You switch camera perspective with the left and right bumpers and thus turn the environment in order to solve puzzles, open paths, discover doors, etc etc etc. Once you get the hang of the camera the game becomes more manageable. Then you have the puzzles - some of which are the kind that make me yell, "WHAT THE FUCK DO YOU WANT?!?" - a la Professor Layton thinks you're a fucking moron. There are minimal hints so sometimes you can futilely poke at a puzzle until miserable. I've completed the story and am working on the last few puzzles but they are pissing me off more than anything else. That being said, this is an entertaining game. A pleasant departure from the blowing shit up FPS genre or slogging through SWTOR.

In other random news:
  • Supernatural Season Four started strong though I think I'm just watching the show for Dean and Bobby.  Sam can go make his stupid faces with Ruby somewhere else on the CWB.
  • Game of Thrones season one was good and got better.  Not goobing out about it the way I feel for the books but the series is strong and seems to be getting a lot of people who would never have picked up the books into the books.  I'm just gonna laugh in their faces if they think things were bad for the Starks in the first book.
  • Koyaanisqatsi (1982) - dir Godfrey Reggio.  Watched this for a class.  Can't say I'm a huge fan of sound/image experiments like this (particularly when scored by Phillip Glass - though imdb says that Reggio recut the film to match Glass's work) but as a cinematic experience it was certainly worth seeing.  It's basically one long montage of our modern world "out of balance" but running parallel to nature - seeing the order in chaos, patterns, etc set to Glass's pulsing and at times over-powering (in a Clockwork Orange reprogramming sense not a good over-powering sense) score.  It's definitely an art house movie from the early 80s through and through.  
  • the new blogger format for posting is clunky and the autosave feature is causing lag making writing and exercise in rage building.  
More crap soon to come - including news about Burn Jita. 

Saving Private Perez (2011) dir Beto Gomez

I ended up watching this during my current depressed, fuck it, I'll watch anything mood and have to admit - this is kind of a funny movie.  The premise - stick with me - is simple but absurd:  Mexican Narco kingpin Julian assembles a team of bad-asses to accompany him in order to rescue his estranged U.S. Marine brother who has been MIA in Iraq.  It's kind of like Let's Get Harry (1986) with Mexican gangsters in some of the world's craziest shirts and cowboy hats.  Their shirts are fucking awesome. 

The movie itself isn't great but it is definitely enjoyable and fun.  It follows the guys on a mission formula, tosses in a bunch of cultural disconnect humor, the best parts are when the team are just screwin around, the action is intentionally American crappy action movie bad, and it has an element of absurdity that amused me.  It's on netflix streaming so if you're in a mood for something waaaaaaay off your normal netflix fare definitely give this a shot. 

Friday, April 20, 2012

Photo Forensics Software | Fourandsix Technologies - Photo Tampering throughout History

Photo Forensics Software | Fourandsix Technologies - Photo Tampering throughout History

Abuelita J's "Puerco Verde" Part I

Henry's Kitchen - The Final Episode, Pt. 1 - Birthday Pork Chop


Litehouse Foods - Freeze dried herbs!

| Litehouse Foods

 just picked some of their freeze dried basil up because I love basil but have no ability to grow it or keep it from going foul before I use it all.  Here's a brilliant solution.

I nearly forgot.

Found in a French magazine along with pictures of Hitler chilling with tropical flowers and goose-stepping natives.  We at HYR in no way shape or form support Nazis, Neo-Nazis, or other assorted fuckwits Indiana Jones would bash in the face with a fucking tank turret.  We do support absurdist views of the world that show that even "monsters" are human beings.  This makes them scarier because you are then forced to ask questions about yourself.  Plus, c'mon it's a naked picture of Hitler.  

Yup. This is all I got for you folks today.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

SWTOR Legacy is here! And...

There have been a lot of changes (full patch notes here) and as far as I can tell most of them are pretty good.  There have been some that are awesome - being able to customize the UI (though chat is still clunky compared to EVE) is nice, tweaking character appearance and there's now a button on the Character Sheet which allows you to color match your armor based on the color pattern of the chest piece (considering I was running around in an ugly, mismatched set of gear I'm grateful), there have been cosmetic changes and fixes and tweaks galore.  This really is a major patch with all kinds of bells and whistles but the biggest addition is the Legacy system which allows you to create a "family" tree/history for your characters on the server.  By completing parts of the story, levelling, etc you can unlock races for character creation (e.g. a Twi'lek Bounty Hunter), acquire and exchange Legacy items between alts, and there are perks for all characters based on the accomplishments of each alts. 

It's cool but ultimately I don't know if I'm really all that thrilled.  Still rail-shooter space combat and I spend most of time "playing" bouncing between alts crafting stuff.  I started a new character (a Zabrak Operative named Sriracha) and noticed that the going is easier with the perks from my Bounty Hunter (along with top shelf crafted armor).  Actually creating a Zabrak character was kind of stupid since I wanted to unlock a Twi'lek (which I can do if I get one to lvl 50 or pay 1.5 mil creds).  It only took part of the evening to reach lvl 10 so it's really not that big a deal.  Guess I could play a Twi'lek Inquisitor but I am neither a fan of light armor nor the Force or melee combat.  Shrug.

I'll keep playing for a bit more, I should at least finish out the BH story arc (and I'm just shy of the lvl 50 mark).  Maybe I'll try out a Twi'lek Smuggler.  That sounds pretty pew pew.

Monday, April 09, 2012

I love along with Nataliedee and drewtoothpaste

option three

Music for Space Combat in SWTOR

I've been doggin the lacklustre space combat in SWTOR since damn near day one I got behind the stick.  It's rail-shooter arcade meh.  That being said, this evening I drank (am drinking) heavily and put on my "Ultimate Reservoir Dogs Project".  I tell you what, I was smoother than shit through a tin goose.

Are you bark all day, little doggy, or are you gonna bite?

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

A NEW SHADOWRUN GAME!?! Holy dystopian near future Johnny Mnemonic!

Two words. FUCK. YES.

Time off, time to get to the grocery store! Recipes!

Booyah!  Another holiday coming up in our Christian nation!  That's cool, and Happy Easter to all of you fine Easter celebrating folks.  I'm in it for the ham.  I don't know and don't care how ham got involved with Easter but fuck yeah, ham!  Also on sale at the local grocerium is loveable lamb!  Now I never really got into lamb except kebabs, mainly because I equate it with that herb-crusted thing served with mint jelly and smells like a Highlander after a long day of log hucking.  I imagine that there's some good way to cook it, particularly with my interest in North African cuisines.  I'll poke around and see if I come up with anything interesting to tell you guys.

I'm also gonna pick up a turkey breast or two just to have on hand, y'know, just in case. 

In other food related news:  Internet friend from the other side of "the pond" is Englishing all over the southern US eating foods that aren't boiled or take-away.  I kid.  At any rate he's been posting on his site and it's pretty awesome to have an outside perspective on foods I/we just take for granted most of the time (e.g. brisket).

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

There's a perfectly reasonable explanation for this...

I've been a long time fan of Morrissey and The Smiths.  Yes, yes I can smile about it now but at the time it was terrible but about a decade (more or less) ago I got into T Rex.  I'm not exactly a Glam Rock fan but I'm not exactly not either (being a pretty heavy Bowie fan and all).  I found this cut a bit of weeks back and yeah, it's pussweed music.  At least it's not Robert Smith getting jowl juice on the original.

Been thinking about the game market lately

and came across this op-ed on today, Your local game store is going bust.  It's a pretty interesting article that covers a range of topics from next-gen consoles to the downsides of moving to digital downloads.

Some of my idle and ignorant thoughts on the matter are relatively simple.  On one hand I like online sites, specifically Steam, and just downloading games for many reasons:
  1. I don't have a car so getting to a game store is a pain in the ass, since for some fucked up reason there's no longer a game store next to campus.
  2. If I wait a little while games and their parasitic DLC will be absurdly cheap.
  3. There's a slew of stuff on PC, small indie games, that never would make their way to consoles for peanuts.
Downsides to digital copies:
  1. My PC can't handle the new mega-titles that I bought for console (namely Skyrim).  This is a fuckin drag and one that I am going to fix over the next few years.
  2. For digital 360 titles, the prices are still much higher than I would be willing to spend on a digital title.  My thinking is that a digital copy should be significantly lower in price than a physical copy.  I'm not getting a physical copy, or a manual, or anything.  There's nothing to ship or package or construct or do something with lazers or brick and mortar bills to pay (yes, I know the servers have to be somewhere but don't split hairs you know what I mean).  So why the fuck should a digital title be as expensive (or close to) a physical new release?
  3. One of the few benefits of having a physical copy is I can get something back for it at the end of the day and some titles are still worth something to collectors (imagine if you had an original Final Fantasy Tactics for the PS1).  Plus if I get sick of a game I impulse bought in two weeks I can return it for some credit towards something else I want to impulse buy.
  4. According to the gaming news sites and rumor mills the new generation of consoles are going to clamp down on the ability to play used games or have backwards compatibility.  Well fuck you too then.  Bad enough the PS3 has no backwards compatibility (a dick move that made me move to purchase a 360 despite being a diehard PS2 fan) and the 360 has limited compatibility (and the XBOX games available for download are outrageously expensive compared to what you could buy them for in shops) but to have no compatibility at all along with forcing gamers to buy new or digital copies of games is pretty crappy. 
By screwing over gamers and their wallets doesn't it seem more likely that they will be more tempted to just pirate a game?  Both parties are at fault (we all know my dislike for pirates after all) but the whole situation smacks of suck.  For my money's worth I am planning on putting my time and effort towards upgrading my PC instead of  buying into the new generation of consoles.  Plus I can just download old titles if I feel like playing a classic.

Sunday, April 01, 2012

Mahs Buhgah

Mahs Buhgah: And now, a vintage photo of Arnold Schwarzenegger eating a burger on the set of "Total Recall"

The Beiber gets a virtual asskickin'

I yoinked these from Vigilant Citizen.  I don't know anything about this Beiber kid except the running jokes about his "lesbian" haircut.  I'm just posting these for those people who like twinks getting beat up.

Random randomness from Randomia: Sunday edition

Couple of things coming down the pike this April (besides High Road to China coming out on DVD):
  • Geralt "I'll fuck anything with lady parts" of Rivia is coming to the 360 this month (04/17) in The Witcher 2: Assassin of KingsTwo discs, plus score, plus a bunch of swag.  I really enjoyed The Witcher and hope the game makes the transition to 360 without losing the edge.  Looking forward to it.  The changes seem to be pretty good though according to this article.
  • Here's a fuckin sweet video:

  • Slowly plodding my way through the main story of SWTOR with my main.  A couple of the planets have been a real drag and I'm not looking forward to slogging through them again with my alts once legacy comes out.  Quesh is a fucking dump.
  • I've been trying to get more into the twitter thing and less of the fb thing. It's basically the same shit as on here but with more links to bizarro news and shark attacks and cool shit like that.
Not much else to report for the time being. Hope all of you are well and in good spirits.

April DVD releases: High Road to China

Man what a shit month for new releases.  The best of the bunch though, is High Road to China (1983) dir Brian G Hutton (who also directed Where Eagles Dare and Kelly's Heroes).  Which was one of grandpa's favorite movies and one that I loved when I was a kid.  Tom Selleck is a man of adventure/pilot who has to deal with a spoiled rich girl during the Warlord era of  early 20th century China.  I love Tom Selleck.  I love adventure movies. 

Interesting trivia: Hutton quit directing in the 80s and became a plumber.

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