BAM!!! NINJAS!

RAMBLINGS OF TECH CULTURE ADDICTION

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Its hip to be square!



Its amazing to me how creative people can be, especially with a payload of 5000+ small toy bricks. I had forgotten about LEGOS all together until the arrival of the new tech writer at my work, we'll refer to him as "Dunechaser", his blog handle. Little did I know he was LEGO Ninja in his spare time, and a damn good one at that.

He doesn't just put together the kits and stuff you buy in stores, he gets inspired and builds stuff with the all the pieces he has collected since he was a kid. He refer's to himself as a LEGO purist, which means "I don't cut, paint, or otherwise modify the pieces I use in my creations."



He took some time to do some ninja stuff for me, and has a series of historical japanese figures he made. I wanted to take a second to showcase his work and sites here, as they are cool, hip, and fun to look at. Take a look at for yourself at http://dunechaser.blogspot.com/ and http://japaneselego.blogspot.com/ and see if you dont wanna run out to toy'r us and get yourself some LEGOS.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Bazaar of Wonders...















OH HOW I FREAKING LOVE the XBox 360 marketplace. Why? Well because its perfect for an addict like me that likes the good stuff, and not some crap for my money.

The marketplace provides me with FREE downloads on demos for the Arcade and Blockbuster games for the 360 on a try before you buy experience. HELL YEAH! Now I don't have to go buy a $10 magazine and load some disk full of nonsense into my console for the one demo I wanted to try out. I can just download the demo and give it a spin.

I used to have a gamefly account, which is basically like netflix for games, for the very reason that I did not want to HOPE to get a rental on a hot title from blockbuster, which had a billion copies of the crappy games, and only one of the hot one (get a new buyer for your video rentals blockbuster, your current one is an idiot). But now thanks to the marketplace I can cancel my gamefly account, as the majority of hot titles I am looking to get have demo that is available for download shorty before or after the launch date. Of course gamefly is good for those RPG or story type games that you play once and then never again, however if you pay $19.99 for two games a month and play an good RPG which usaully takes two months+ to finish when you have a normal life, you might as well have just bought the damn game anyway.

One bad thing about the demos that are for games that have a multiplayer component, is that only some give you an chance to try the multiplayer mode, which in my opinion is completely stupid as you are missing the very reason I want to try out the game and see how good it is compared to other online mutiplayer games I own. However maybe thats why some deveoper's DON'T include a mutiplayer demo, if the game isn't as good or can't compare to monsters like HALO 2 and DOA 4 then that may effect sales. I would say bull to that and let us try it anyway, we may find something that is cool and different enough for us to actually buy the game, rather then avoid it because I we were unsure.

ON a bright note related to this topic, and my current blood lust for a new multiplayer game, Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter has been confirmed to have demo for download out by Feb 27th! So look for it at the marketplace and give it a whirl. Maybe Ubisoft will be smart enough to include a multiplayer demo, as that is the MAIN reason most of us FPS fans will be buying it. One can only hope...

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

From submachine guns to laser swords and back again...



Somebody please Kill HALO.

Don't get me wrong, I love the game. After all, I am an "overlord" of a thriving clan D1V1S1ON XX, full of friends and teammates that rock the house and are amazingly fun to play with. So why the statement above?

Well shields and energy swords are losing there luster on me. Now with a expensive massively powerful 360 idling pretty next to my TV, why am I still playing this old xbox game? Why? Well because Bungie got it right, not only did HALO 2 provide an amazing single player game but it provided the best online multiplayer experience still to date. I originally began my online addiction at the insistence of my good friend Ian by purchasing a Xbox and the game Tom Clancy's Rainbow six 3. Soon for me it was buddies, submachine guns and frags all night. Good times, Pete, Joe, Teo, Chris, Old skool memories.


But when HALO came out it was all over, the game played better, had cool vehicles, rocking graphics, and had a VERY good multiplayer lobby and matchmaking system. You could customize your appearance and games to whatever you liked, adding subtracting game options, and create parties of friends with ease. To makes things even better I stumbled across the good peeps at 2old2play.com (a site for mature gamers 25 and older), and found a community of "mature" gamers that hated screaming idiotic kids (Rated "M" for Mature folks) as much as I did. I made new friends, Smoke, Eksessiv, ZeroCD, Ag3nt Or4ng3, Meemoos, Jolly and they saved the game for me. However in the process lost some of my older buddies, who didn't care much for laser blasters and shields. I admit I too missed the realism (did I just say that about a video game?) of the military shooter, where a headshot means your dead.



My older buddies, tried to get me to come over to Ghost Recon also by Tom Clancy and Ubisoft, the game they had switched to since my departure to HALO. I have to admit the game was appealing to me and was excited at first, lush large landscapes, a huge array of weapon selections, and oh yeah "HEADSHOTS"! But mainly a good opportunity to play with the friends, I had lost to HALO.

Unfortunately I had become spoiled, Ghost Recon as cool as it was, had a ton of flaws. The user interface for creating and joining multiplayer games was janky at best compared to the smooth, easy to use HALO lobbies. The edge detection was terrible, throwing a grenade at what looked like a good angle only to have in bounce off an invisible bounding box and take out your entire team was just silly. I tried to get past those flaws for my buddies, but couldn't, and so went back to my comfy, cushy, polished HALO.

Why couldn't other games developers get the Multiplayer right? I mean if Bungie could do it, why not Ubisoft, who had been rocking online gaming before HALO. Wave after wave, new Tom Clancy games came, and even though cool in concept always went back to good old HALO.



Well finally Ubisoft may get its "Headshot". Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter (release date March 9, 2006) holds the promise of pulling me out of the laser blaster world and back to frags, and headshots. The 360 may have been what Ubisoft needed, and I think they have been listening and learning from the community of gripers like me. The game is not only stunningly beautiful, is also looks well thought out in the *GASP* dare I say it multiplayer experience. Which, lets face it, should be the main goal for any FPS that wants to make Xbox live top 10. It boasts customizable games, amazing maps, better clan support, a drone enemy spotting system (kinda like Radar in HALO), and a wayyyy better mutiplayer UI so finding games with buddies won't be a such pain in the ass.

Of course, the marketing machine is in full hype, and I may be caught up in the hope, but from the videos, hands on reviews, and such I am pumped for not only myself, but also for my old skool and new skool buddies, who may just get a chance to finally play together.

Overview of Ghost Recon Adanced Warfighter Multiplayer (with sweet movies) -
http://previews.teamxbox.com/xbox-360/1259/Tom-Clancys-Ghost-Recon-Advanced-Warfighter/p1/

Multiplayer interview with Ubisoft rep:
http://www.gametrailers.com/gamepage.php?id=1693

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Welcome to BAM!!! NINJAS!

BAM!!! Ninjas! An exclamation from a good friend when describing something cool and surprising. Just think of a Ninja appearing out of nowhere in a blast of smoke to complete his secret objective only to vanish just the same, and you get the idea.

We were just sitting there and BAM!!! NINJAS!...

I was looking for this DVD and BAM!!! NINJAS!...

I was playing this game online and BAM!!! NINJAS!...

The club was empty and BAM!!! NINJAS!...

Well actually the term BAM!!! NINJAS! came from a friend of his. So I got the term from a freind of a friend... what?!?!

IT WORKS, and its how I feel when I spot something cool and interesting.

So that said...Interested in all things digitally cool, tech savy, house music swanky, ultra gamer geeky, late night clubby, super secret cliquey? This is for you.

Well actually screw that its for me. This a BLOG afterall, to rant and rave about what I love, hate, and think is just so damn interesting that maybe you will too. Lets not pretend its about what you think, and thus your only way of telling me different is to comment on what I decide to post here, or get your own blog (they are free afterall).

So I encourage to speak up wether you agree or not, maybe just maybe you'll swing my opinion, or better yet share something else that is damn cool and interesting.

Meanwhile with that said, I will post away all the cool stuff that I find or want, post-carnage reports from late night gaming sessions, tales of debaucherous weekend tyrades, and reviews of stuff to get or avoid within the pop-culture influenced for your hard earned duckets.