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Member Since 07 Apr 2008
Online Last Active Today, 09:38 PM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: The Star Wars TV Show Topic: This Is The Way

Today, 07:10 PM

k, before I launch into this, I just want to say that this show is good and I enjoy watching it each week. Having said that, let's go:


This show has a very '90s, Star Trek, Stargate, Farscape kind of feel (this week was veeeery Farscape), where a season of TV meant 22 episodes at 45 minutes a pop and a lot of those episodes were just kinda there. Just, like, yep, that was an episode. It was a simpler time, when an episode of TV was broadcast and then more or less forgotten until you saw it as a rerun a few years later, and people just thought of TV shows as those things you watched when you remembered to. Individual episodes were almost treated as disposable; it didn't matter if you forgot to watch TNG every second or third week. I don't think even the showrunners expected you to watch every episode back in those days.


I don't like Old TV any more. I think New TV, where seasons are shorter and focused on an over-arching story and long-form character development with minimal filler, is just a better format for entertainment. 13 episodes is better than 22, 10 is better than 13, 6 is better than 10, even 4 is pretty great sometimes. I've seen excellent 3-ers. I don't necessarily think a serialized, adventure-of-the-week show is automatically bad, but in this day and age they'd better be really good adventures, and to be honest I'm still going to want an over-arching story.

The thing that kept you coming back to those '90s shows was a cast of regulars you loved seeing every week, even if the episodes themselves weren't particularly memorable. The Mandalorian only has two regulars, though: a man who rarely talks and and his son who can't talk, and Mando himself has nothing going on in these standalone episodes. Remember when I said I was impressed that they weren't just making him an effortlessly badass cool guy in the first two episodes? I have to take that back, because that's exactly what he is now. This week there was a whole scene devoted to the supporting characters being impressed by his stylish combos on those droids, and then he Batmans everyone at the end and flies away not looking at the explosions. I thought he was shaping up to be something different in the first few episodes where the story and character development were still happening, but now it really is just cool armour guy doing cool stuff.


Without an over-arching story or a compelling cast of regulars, it leaves a lot of heavy lifting to the guest stars and the individual episode plots, and so far it's just been Star Wars versions of things you've seen a dozen times before. Seven Samurai but Star Wars. Heist movie but Star Wars. Crazy knife lady but Star Wars. Big angry Buffy bad guy but Star Wars. Bill Burr but Star Wars. And I like Star Wars (perhaps I've mentioned that), but not just as a new lick of paint over some rusty old tropes.


Like I said, I don't dislike it, I still enjoy watching it, but this isn't what I hoped for when I heard that Disney was dumping money into a Star Wars live-action TV show in 2019. I really hope the Obi Wan show isn't going to be like this.

In Topic: Death Stranding: Watch Ride On AMC Starring Norman Reedus

Today, 02:48 AM

I've been getting through this game in fits and starts. I'm up to Episode 5, of apparently 14-ish, but these Episodes aren't split up into equal lengths and apparently 3 is by far the longest one in the game. I'm hoping I'm past the halfway point, because... I don't like this game and I don't want to spend too much more time on it.


At this point I can answer the question that nagged all through the run up to the game's release: what is Death Stranding? It's a game about delivering packages. Sometimes you just take them from A to B, sometimes you first have to go and pick the package up from a third point. Sometimes there are bad guys on the way, and sometimes those bad guys are black goop monsters you have to throw grenades made of your own blood and poop at. Once I fought Mads Mikkelson in a WW1 trench with a 3D-printed assault rifle, but that was a pretty big outlier. The bulk of this game is using a clunky menu system to load up your absurd body-mounted parcel rack system, marking out a route on your map, then schlepping all the way over there with 80kg of metal briefcases stuck to all your limbs.


It's not bad. There isn't much in the way of challenge, so if you're just looking for a casual hour or two of making deliveries I guess it can scratch that itch. With no magic sticky climbing system, it does take a bit of effort to find (or create) a route that'll get you and your cargo up a craggy hill, which you wouldn't even think twice about in most games. Getting back down hills can be kind of fun, too, as you hang on tight to your shoulder straps tight and half-run, half-stumble at a dangerous speed, trying not to actually go tumbling. And there's kind of a neat melee combat system for fighting off bad guys, where on knocking out an enemy you have a second of slow-mo during which you can grab their dropped cargo out of the air and use it as a weapon. L2 and R2 control your left and right grip respectively, so you have to hold the trigger the entire time you want to hold a thing, but if you want to throw something you just let go of it while you're swinging it, and it can be pretty fun to bonk one guy, grab the briefcase that goes flying out of his hand and then yeet it at the next poor sucker. It reminds me of what I thought combat was going to be like in Breath of the Wild before I actually played it.


But I am long past the point where I would have stopped playing the game if it wasn't for Kojima's name on the cover and the promise of something happening with this story. In spite of his problems with verbosity, buying into his own hype, not having written a female character who wasn't actively embarrassing to behold since, like, MGS3, I still think Kojima is a pretty good storyteller. Even at his worst, I would still take an overlong, indulgent Kojima cutscene over, say, the storytelling of a Kingdom Hearts or modern Final Fantasy game. For all the made-up terminology and baffling trailers, the story and world of Death Stranding have been pretty easy to grasp so far. I know what I'm doing, I know who the characters are, I can tell you my short term and long term goals. Everything's weird, but it's weird in an "I'm looking forward to finding out what that's all about" way, not a "This game was in development hell for five years and maybe the explanation for this was in an earlier build and got cut from the final release", Square-Enix kind of way.


Though, next time you meat a Kojima-can-do-no-wrong die-hard, dunk on them with this scene and enjoy the mental gymnastics as they try and pretend it's anything but trash:


In Topic: SSLF's Runner-Up GOTY of the Year 2019 Thread

12 December 2019 - 10:30 PM

The fatal flaw of the Death Stranding GOTY campaign was when they actually had to release the game and let people play it. Even Geoff was like, "Yeah, I can't get away with it this time".

In Topic: SSLF's Runner-Up GOTY of the Year 2019 Thread

12 December 2019 - 09:57 PM

Fear not, though, because GOTY 2020 is here:






In Topic: SSLF's Runner-Up GOTY of the Year 2019 Thread

12 December 2019 - 09:40 PM

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice comes out of nowhere to win GOTY.


Kojima's friendship with Geoff is officially over.


There was no "And one more thing!" announcement. It's just finished. Bayonetta 3 was a no show. Nintendo showed nothing. No Elden Ring. No Halo Infinite. The PS5 announcement was for that looter thing I've already forgotten the name of. I guess the new Xbox announcement was neat.


I have wasted three hours of my life again.