idiosyncrasy Today

Scathing social commentary meets the gamer generation.

Friday, June 30, 2006

See! Playstation really is about sex!

First off, I told you so.

So thanks to Brian Ashcraft, American resident in Japan extraordinaire and writer over at has recently taken some pictures of a local seedy club.

This is one of those non-sex non-illegal "health" businesses. Basically they refrain from penetration because that would make the events contained therein illegal, and goodness knows doing illegal things is wrong.

But the best thing about this is the sign above the doorway. The name of the place is "Chupa Chups" and there is a sign that says "Free Information Office". But then there's the sign in bright red, outlined letters that says "Play Station" Yes, that's right.

Playstation is now synonymous with sex in my mind (not that it wasn't before), but when you think about it, it would be the perfect name for a sexually geared video gaming system.

Thanks Brian, you're incite into the Japanese world makes me happy.

Check out his pretty slick article after the jump.


PS3 gets some high class backing

Hideo Kojima (creator of the Metal Gear series) and Square-Enix's Tetsuya Nomura are backing the PS3 in this year's system cycle.

They state that the PS3 will truly be the most solid of the systems in 2 to 3 years when they plan to release their next wave of A-list titles (Metal Gear Solid 4 and Final Fantasy XIII).

According to them the PS3 is like going to the movies, whereas the XBOX306 "is watching a DVD at home" and "Wii is a television program".

Though they did go on to say that the ultimate system would be the PS3 with the Wii controller, and seemed upset that Sony has removed the rumble feature from theirs.

Also, they said that the PS3 will most likely flounder for a while, because its price point it too high for a video game system, but in two or three years when the games are there for it it will come around and take control "naturally".

So, my two cents... Kojima, of course he likes the PS3, the Metal Gear games haven't been more than a movie for a long time. I tried playing MGS3, but after the first 3 hours of cinematic and only really playing 25 minutes of mini-game-ish missions I turned it off. Too much like Dragon's Lair for my tastes.

And Nomura, I'm a huge Final Fantasy fan, but the direction the series has been going makes my willy soft. Yes, that's right, soft. Square used to tell me wonderful stories (see: FFVI) and interesting micro-managing of magic (see: FFVII) and now their games are short (see: FFX) and too hell bent on graphics (see: FFX2) to make an engaging storyline. So of course they want the graphical umph of the PS3, so they can continue to put graphics above design, an all too common industry trend.


Morning NSFW - June 30

These will be local soon! :p *cheer*


Thursday, June 29, 2006

Sony exec possibly inferring further jumping of the shark

So, as I've discussed here countless times before, Sony really seems to be hurting themselves with their nasty price point for the PS3.

But now after an interview with Kaz Hirai, president of Sony Computer Entertainment of America, it seems likely that Sony will be sticking it to their potential customers again by charging a higher rate for the actual games than their competitor XBOX360.

"Generally speaking, over the past twelve years or so, there has been a consumer expectation that disc based games are maybe US$ 59 on the high end to US$ 39 on the low end," Hirai stated.

"So, what I can say now is, I think it would be a bit of a stretch to think that we could suddenly turn around and say ‘PS3 games now US$ 99.99’."

"If it becomes a bit higher than US$ 59, don't ding me, but, again, I don't expect it to be US$ 100," he concluded.

He also goes to say that the games will be "as affordable as possible" (see: we're going to rape you).

So, am I now to believe that the PS3 games are going to be around $70? Maybe $85? Assuming I'm buying a PS3, can I afford an $85 game right after blowing $600 on the system? Sony, if I was there I'd slap you, get your shit together. I'm a Sony fanboy at times, I love my PS1/PS2, but this is silly.


Sony exec possibly inferring further jumping of the shark

So, as I've discussed here countless times before, Sony really seems to be hurting themselves with their nasty price point for the PS3.

But now after an interview with Kaz Hirai, president of Sony Computer Entertainment of America, it seems likely that Sony will be sticking it to their potential customers again by charging a higher rate for the actual games than their competitor XBOX360.

"Generally speaking, over the past twelve years or so, there has been a consumer expectation that disc based games are maybe US$ 59 on the high end to US$ 39 on the low end," Hirai stated.

"So, what I can say now is, I think it would be a bit of a stretch to think that we could suddenly turn around and say ‘PS3 games now US$ 99.99’."

"If it becomes a bit higher than US$ 59, don't ding me, but, again, I don't expect it to be US$ 100," he concluded.

He also goes to say that the games will be "as affordable as possible".

So, am I now to believe that the PS3 games are going to be around $70? Maybe $85? Assuming I'm buying a PS3, can I afford an $85 game right after blowing $600 on the system? Sony, if I was there I'd slap you, get your shit together. I'm a Sony fanboy at times, I love my PS1/PS2, but this is silly.


Loco Roco seems a bit sketchy to me

New advertisements have now gone up in Japan for the LocoRoco video game by SCEJ, and umm... wow.

Here's the biggest one I've found.
And is it just me or does this seem obligatorily racist?

I mean, it's showing the antagonists of the game as seemingly dread-locked "Blackface" character sits there eating watermelon while quoting that this is "the happiest game ever!".

Ok, now I understand Japan does not have a large black population, hell, it's predominently homogenous, having a very small population of "outsiders", but come on. Japan is one of the most xenophobic countries in the world, and that's swell and all, but this advertisement would get someone dragged into the street and shot in the US.

But just remember, it's "The Happiest Game Ever!"


Morning NSFW - June 29

Enjoy bitches


Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Clerks 2 is a-comin'

It's almost time my friends, as my good buddy Carlos pointed out to me this morning with this little saucy tidbits of information. Here, I'll show you the e-mail I got this morning when I got into work.

((note: I'm going to be getting my own server space soon so I will finally be able to host images locally, until then bear with me))

But yep, that was it, the whole thing, way to be descriptive, but in all honesty it said everything it needed to. She's sexy, and I want it, and Clerks 2 is going to be out July 21, go see it.

It looks pretty slick. I highly recommend checking out this video as well.

More more more Clerks videos

It's a bit longer, but so awesome.


Mini-Skirt clad High School Warrior video games rock!

Mami Matsuyama, an idoru in Japan, has recently been selected to be the live action face of "Fighting Beauty Wu-Ron", a character from the manga of the same name. (The manga has also recently become a full length series in prime-time)

The game (which is now available in Japan) seems to be a final fight style brawler with some flashy graphics to appeal to all those horned up school boys (see: me).

The photoshoot resulted in some fun pics though. If you're an anime fan check it out, I've watched some raws and it seems fairly average, but hey it's new anime.

Oh yeah, Mami threw down against some of the fans at the press release, and she did fairly well, but when it looked like she was going to lose she would shout things like, "stop it!" in a cute voice only little asian girls can do. The filthy cheater.

More images after the jump


"Cyrus" sues Take-Two

Roger Hill (Cyrus), the "star" of the old cult film "The Warriors" has brought up a lawsuit against Take-Two for using his voice and likeness in the new Warriors video game.

According to Hill, he was approached about allowing this, but he refused. Subsequently he was not solicited anymore and then up pops the game with his face and famous one-liner "Can you dig it!"

Hill, currently employed at a Manhattan business college library is suing for $250,000 plus a court order to prevent his likeness from being used again.

Wait, so this guy works in a library now? Wow, I though that cooky kid was going to make it big some day. Thanks to IMDB, I've managed to track down Hill's work after the Warriors which included (and was limitted to) both One Life to Live and Orson Welles' Magic Show.

So why would this guy not accept a big thick check from Take-Two? I don't get it. If I was living in a van down by the river I'd take any sort of cash inflow I could, and picturing Bad Ass Cyrus restocking book shelves just makes my head hurt.

You should have taken the money and run man, run!


Morning NSFW - June 28

The first bunch is the Sin Episodes models, and the rest is just wicked nice :p


Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Australia says no to Reservoir Dogs

Thanks to Australia's Office of Film and Literature Classification, the new Atari game "Reservoir Dogs" (based on the cult classic Tarantino film) , will be banned from sale in the region. This most likely stemming from Atari's decision to not make an editted version for Australian release.

Australia is notoriously harsh on video game ratings, having banned games such as GTAIII and Manhunt.

I don't know, maybe I'm crazy, but wasn't Australia set up as a penal colony of England? It was like Escape from New York with Kurt Russel only they didn't have that bad ass Snake Plissken (yes Metal Gear stole his name).

Well, I'm just happy I don't live there I guess. I wonder if it's possible to dump the contents (see: right-wing jack-asses) of Oklahoma into Australia, they'd get along just fine.


Morning NSFW - June 27

((something on 4chan broke this morning so I'll have some of the images up locally, but it'll be a smaller number than normal... sorry!))

Locally Hosted Pic 1 of doom!
Locally Hosted Pic 2 of doom!
Locally Hosted Pic 3 of doom!
Locally Hosted Pic 4 of doom!

Ok, So here's a small chunk of what I found this morning. Does anyone know of some cheap webhosting I could use to toss up pics locally? I hate having to resort to bumming 4chan's bandwidth anyways.


Monday, June 26, 2006

Japan FTW!

As most of you should know, Japan has numerous maid restaurants where girls dress in costumes and serve you food, think of it as Hooters only the girls aren't as trashy... well maybe that isn't true, but hey, whatever.

Well there has been a huge push in Japan to get interest in the new Silent Hill movie, though from what has been seen in the cosplay community it has already been embraced by the Otaku.

Well the restaurant "Maid in Japan" clever, has begun it's promotion of the movie release by changing their usual saucy maid outfits to nurse costumes to mimic the dead nurses in the Silent Hill Hospital.

Here's a Silent Hill nurse.

Creepy right? yeah, I thought so too. So here's the maids in "Silent Hill Nurse Garb"

They're just a little different right? Now, I will not complain of course, because these ladies are quite easy on the eyes, and I'm a fan of outfits and dress up (see: fetishes every guy has even if he doesn't admit it), but they could have tried to get their costumes a little closer to the originals. I mean, there isn't even any blood! No blood! Silent Hill is intended to be scary! Not cute and strangely alluring.

So they're not sticking to the canon of the series, yes that sucks, but if I was there I'd pop in. It won't make me see the movie (which was very good btw) but it will make me stop in for some tea. So I guess it'll work out for them.

Again, why doesn't the US do this? Hell, I have half a mind to start my own theme restaurant.

More pics after the jump


PS3 controller not rocking the rumble pack

So according to Sony, the PS3 controller will not have a rumble pak because it will interfere with the very fragile workings of the internal gyro.

The last thing they want is a player to be playing and then completely lose contro.

But oh wait, maybe Sony should go have a meeting with Pelican crew, because they had a controller back in 1999 that used both gyro and rumble technology.

Would you like some lotion for that burn Sony? Ooooohhhh!


Sony CEO still full of piss and vinegar

According to Sony CEO Howard Stringer, PS3 will come out on top in the next gen system wars over it's competitors (Wii and XBOX360).

Despite the fact that the PS3 is debuting at a rather large (see: f'ing huge) dollar amount, Stringer believes that we (the consumer) will pay because we are making an investment in the future.

"Obviously, it's a higher-risk strategy as all new inventions are. But if the PS3 lives up to its total potential, then I don't think anyone will be worried about Nintendo or Xbox's cheaper price."

You know, I really haven't seen anything revolutionary on Sony's plate for next gen. Everything I've seen looks like your standard run of the mill first iteration next gen games. Low substance, flashy graphics. So Sony better step it up with their development if they want to convince me to blow a huge chunk of change, because right now? Hell no. I'll buy it in 3 years used at Gamestop.


Morning NSFW - June 26

Enjoy Everyone :p Happy Monday!


Friday, June 23, 2006

Never ceases to amaze me

Ok, so we've seem the rather sexually viral advertising from Japan recently (see: Pussy Sells Playstations, etc..), but this one just baffles me... I just don't get it.

I mean, she's there in a bikini, standing in front of an arcade with a Konami sign behind her.
Sure, ok, we've seen this before, this is in my comfort zone. There's a bunch of horny Japanese reports and voyeurs taking photos because hey, why not?

Again, this makes sense to me, I'm at one with the universe. But then they throw this in... that's right, she's eating a squid.

What the hell does that have to do with sex and video games? It hurts my brain and as such I am thrust from my comfort zone ans the Japanese continue to surprise me yet again, just when I thought I had those cooky bastards figured out.

I mean sure, for anyone who's booted up some sordid "anime" (see: hentai) knows that squids have tentacles, and tentacles can be pretty hot at times, but eating a raw squid doesn't really seem to fit that nitch fetish like La Blue Girl does.

Ah well, it's kinda neat regardless, so I'll just smile and nod.

More images on flickr after the jump.


Senate poo's on the little guy... for a change

Ok, so the Senate was recently looking to pass a new bill which would increase the minimum wage in the US from the paltry sum of $5.15 to a decent $7.25. Well that's obviously way too much money for our lowest rung to be making. Thinking better of their decision they decided to not raise the amount, and then gave themselves a raise instead.

John Stewart had a pretty good set about this, you should check it out.
The best line he has was "So koodos to Congress for literally taking a giant shit on the poorest people in the country... cause they deserve it."

Thanks government, we hate you too.

Oh yeah, there was some video game thing on afterwards ^_^; check it out


Morning NSFW - June 23

Very NSFW - They are good, but extra shady :p



Thursday, June 22, 2006

Kinda slick 3d desktop

There's a new product on the way called BumpTop, a 3d virtual desktop for your desktop computer. Who needs Windows? We've got magazines to toss around on a 3d surface, I want my Guild Wars icon to tax my ram as it calculates appropriate physics when I toss it across the table.

Now, while this seems cool and all, I wonder if these guys have seen my desk at work? Most likely not. Well let's put it subtley... It's a disaster zone, if families lived on it the children would cry since Mommy and Daddy have been crushed underneath a couple of level sketches and my Voltron action figure tipped over.

The last thing I need to do is to have an untidy virtual desktop as well. My work comp is one of the few places I'm actually organized. This looks cool in concept, but I can't see it being more effect that a standard clutter-free desktop.


Real asian female gamers!

So yeah, most of you have seen pictures of booth babes at random gaming and anime conventions right? You in the corner saying no, you're a liar and you know it, that's what the internet's for.

Some of you may have actually gone to an event like E3 and seen these vixens in person.

Well, I don't want to burst your bubble, but those girls most likely don't go home alone to throw down in some single player Street Fighter or to play World of Warcraft until their fingers bleed. Sorry, it just doesn't happen. Here's the difference, it all started in high school, remember, when we'd go home and load up the newest Final Fantasy while the cheerleaders went out and had promiscuous unprotected sex with the football and/or basketball team? Well that's what's going on at the conventions. Like cheerleaders, those girls are being paid to look pretty, they stand on their pedestal and pretend to care until their shift ends at which point they pick up their check and blow it on heroine for their angry beast of a husband (see: not you).

Well Wired has recently done a really cool article about this phenomenon and even has tips to pick out real Otaku girls in a crowd.

It's kinda funny, but it makes alot of sense. Alas, no cute asian school girl for me.

Full Wired Article
Full Television Report Pictures


Morning NSFW - June 22

It's Hiney Day!

And a small section for all you who dislike Hiney (See: I hate you)


Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Reasons to have kids

This kid rocks, that's right, gather round future gamers and let me weave a spell of enchantment called Castlevania 1.

I don't know if this is actually Gabe's son (one of the minds behind Penny Arcade) but if it is, wow is his Daddy hardcore.

Albeit, if I was a father, my kid would either be humming the theme song to Evangelion, screaming "shoryuken!", or explaining to his Mom why Daddy can't go to a movie with her, he has to finish his Epic Mount Quest.

Sony avoids getting pimp slapped by ASA

The Advertising Standards Authority has now decided to not take action against Sony for numerous posters they had been putting up to promote the multimedia functions of the PSP.

Some of the posters which illicited angry critisism from people who obviously need more to do had tag lines like, "Your girlfriend's white bits here", and "Saucy e-mails won't get you fired here".

According to Sony the posters were supposed to be funny and not intended to anger anyone.

One poster was removed immediately by Sony, the "Take a running jump" poster, which was hung up in subway and train stations.

Aww, see, that's the kind of advertising we need, it will weed out the bottom of the barrel and the mentally unstable. If someone reads one of these posters and hurts themselves rock on! They won't make babies and subsequently propogate their genetics. I say hang your signs up high Sony, and maybe add one or two like, "God hates you, take revenge" or "Hey, it was ok to do in GTA".


Morning NSFW - June 21

Touch it for me, but don't let your boss see


Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Teddy Bear meets USB

Ok, this is a random oddity I've found online, I have no idea who's making them, where to buy them, or why someone, with their warped sense of cuteness, thought this is the future of portable storage.

I mean, sure, ripping the head off of a bear and filling him full of love (see: torrented pornography) is a novel concept, and it's on a keychain so you can take it with you everywhere, but come on. I'd like to think that (being a huge geek myself) they could have come up with something better than a teddy bear. Rock the dork-dom and toss it in that Linux Penguin head or something. Appeal to the geeks, not the 9 year old girls who don't know what a thumb drive is. Maybe it's just me.

But I do love the picture of the decapitated bear hanging from the PC, that might make it all worthwhile.


THQ fears the MMO Juggernaut that is WoW

According to THQ CEO Brian Farrell, THQ has no plans to enter the MMO market in the near future, and they also view any attempts by other companies to do so as faulty.

This is of course stemming from the fact that World of Warcraft is toting around the hefty 6-million-players sack of money. This big sack of money (looks similar to a 1500 thread count pillow case) is currently sporting a face drawn in Sharpie resembling a Jack-o-Lantern.

That's right Blizzard, you scare away the competion. Maybe it'd be cool if the competition stopped making fantasy-based games and tried to appeal to a different audience with their games as opposed to appearing as a WoW clone. *cough* Lord of the Rings Online *cough* Warhammer Online *cough

Try something different, like a space simulator, (ignore utter failures in design like SWG) why didn't Warhammer go for 40,000k? Personally a much better IP with an established player-base (see: Dawn of War) and very different than WoW.

Diversity, ingenuity, try it, come on... try it.


Morning NSFW - June 20

I'm especially partial to the pics in the /hr/ directory, thanks 4chan!

Monday, June 19, 2006

idiosyncrasy Today needs you

Ok, so it's come to my attention that my other writers... don't write, and as such I'm looking for new writers (primarily weekends). If you have any interest in this please send me a portfolio of your work (published work is a plus - please use clean page copies if from a magazine or newspaper) .

If you have none, check out some news, write some pieces up, and then I'll review them.

We're looking for witty and insightful while still showing some semblance of relating information.


Metal Saga: Hagane no Kisetsu released in Japan

You know, I actually enjoy our country, I think we've got a lot of the world's crap figured out. We can go to the store and choose 77 different types of toothpaste, we can blow entire paychecks on booze and women, we can have our cake and eat it too.

But then, just when I think my convictions are solid, Japan throws me another zinger. Metal Saga, a new Atlus RPG (now on the DS) was released, and who better to convince me that I want it than asian girls in mid-drift revealing army blouses and camo mini-skirts? I mean, that says quality game am I right? Come on? Anyone?

So, where are our asian school girls convincing us to buy Madden 2006? If anything, we need

Oh, did I mention the game features packs of bazooka-wielding dogs? I mean, why not? They like violence just as much as people. Untapped army recruit pool? I think so.


Super Paper Mario videos!

Thanks to the World Hobby Fair in Tokyo over the weekend the nets been grabbing all sorts of great new videos. The ones that interest me the most are the ones showing gameplay for the new Paper Mario game.

Now, me being a big Paper Mario fan can't wait to see how this one turns out given the new controller and subsequent tweaks to the gameplay to make it fit. *crosses fingers*

It looks pretty slick, thanks Nintendo


Morning NSFW - June 19

Enjoy, the list is small, because 4chan was kinda poor this morning.


Friday, June 16, 2006

Korgoth Update

It's come to my attention that the entire first episode is viewable on, so check it out if you haven't already, and if you have, watch it again because it's hilarious.

Opening, Part1, Part2, Part3



Korgoth of Barbaria Needs You!

If any of the readers here are Adult Swim fans, maybe you've seen the pilot for Korgoth of Barbaria, a cartoon parody of Conan the Barbarian.

I recently dl'ed it (as I missed the original airing) and tossed it on and holy hell was it hilarious. It's a cross between the Conan Mythos, an old-school D&D campaign, and a drug induced dork's wet dream.

Well, the pilot aired and now the show needs your support! If you saw it and liked what was there hit up this link and show your support so that it officially gets picked up.

Adult Swim Feeback for Korgoth


Majesco worries me sometimes

Majesco Entertainment is proud to announce that they will be releasing the first US/European Wrestling game for the Nintendo DS.

This in itself isn't a bad idea, wrestling games are on occassion decent. But what worries me about this story, is that Majesco has licenced the Nacho Libre rights.

So I know Jack Black is funny, or something, but what point does a publisher get to where they think, "hmm... Nacho Libre... that'll be a great game". I'm guessing the thought pattern went more along the lines of "hmm... Nacho Libre... those dumb bastards would pile into stores to buy our shit if we put a Nacho Libre sticker on the box... make it happen!".

Remember when games didn't need a movie based IP to be made? (see: Gradius, The Legend of Zelda, Metal Gear Solid, Pong, Frogger)

Remember when a game sold well based on the quality of the game and not some preconceived notion of a movie? (see: Diablo, Starcraft, God of War)

So I understand the reasoning behind this. Cash cows are great for a company (I've worked on my fair share of them) but is this method of design just a fall back crutch for the industry? Independent IP's are the real brainchilds for creativity in the industry, and when we stifle ourselves by wedging our games within the confines of a licence ingenuity seems to take a back seat. When you stamp a box with a name (like Nacho Libre) the same number of copies of the game will sell, regardless of the quality, because people are buying the name, not the product, and coming from an old school gamer, that's sad.


Man, Japan is full of sexy women and amazing machines!

So check this...

Leave it to the Japanese to make a Rube Goldberg machine this extensive. The fact that is has a bowling ball being hurled out of a windmill-like tower would make it the coolest machine of all time, but being that it unveils a steaming bowl of ramen from under a silver lid it takes the cake. I have this unholy love affair with ramen, it's delicious, and costs like 11 cents.

In the US we make bombs, in Japan they make ramen machines. I think we need to get our priorities in order people, seriously!


Morning NSFW - June 16

Well it's now day 2 of our NSFW posts. Please let me know if anyone has a site that can host the images so that I can link them as opposed to just providing the URL's.

Enjoy and good fapping! (preferably after you got home from work)


Thursday, June 15, 2006

DDR playing that puts those Emo Mall kids to shame

While diligently scouring the ethers of the interweb this morning I came across quite possibly the most amazing DDR player of all time, seeing as how the lil guy is like 5 years old.

So here I am, watching this video thinking, wow... the dude only got an AA? He perfected the entire song... the ENTIRE SONG.

I tried playing DDR once, and my bunk ass remembered why I chose video games over sports, my legs are apparently like retarded step children that live under the stairs. Sure, they know how to walk, but years in the dark cold floorboards have left them atrophied and weak, yielding no chance of succeeding at even the most mildly dexterous activities.

This guy puts me to shame. Thanks Japan for reminding me how much better even your infants are at video games than us. (see: Almost every 2D fighter)


Morning NSFW

About 2 months ago here at work I began trolling boards, forums, and general internet sites for less than savory pictures of women in seductive poses/costumes, etc. Then I would take said links and send them to a bunch of the guys here over AIM, and it in turn became known as Drew's morning NSFW (not safe for work).

But thanks to Spyros wonderful incite this morning, why not just post it here for the whole world to check out.

So every morning I will be delivering a morning NSFW list (though most of it is tame and perfectly safe for work assuming 18 year old girls cosplaying as sluts is not naughty by your work standards).

You'll have to cut and past these to get around the wall of 4chan blocking! which prevents website external links to images.


Wednesday, June 14, 2006

PSP stands for "Pussy Sells Playstations"

Well it seems that those lovable Japanese are at it again pushing the PSP in the only way that will make the rather large price tag easier to swallow, with shameless idol plugs. The people over at Goo Game have a whole series of pics with Japanese Idols playing the new action puzzle-game Korokoro Korn. In bikinis... Obviously. Attractive young asian girls play their PSP's in bikinis all the time...

Apparently I need to move to Japan.

So yes, they continue to sell sex, because it works and everyone's happy. The pre-pubescent asian boy and the 50 year old asian business man will end up buying this game, and shortly afterwards masturbate into a Hello Kitty sock while sniffing panties bought at a gum ball machine.

Wow Japan is great. More pics here


Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Take-Two gets slapped like a disobedient woman

Take-Two Games got warned by the FTC to "watch their step". This coming shortly before Take-Two announced that they are $50 million in the hole last quarter and are scrounging for footings during this slump.

To make this worse, investors also began pulling out of the company faster than a 16 year old catholic boy too afraid to buy condoms, causing their stock to drop 10%.

Regulators also slapped them with this new ruling, saying that they are responsible for disclosing any information on "hidden" "features" of a game before it launches, else they could be subject to paying $11,000 per cart sold. Had this been in place prior to them launching Oblivion (which has recently "found" a naked hack for the models) Take-Two would theoretically be on the line for about $2 billion in charges.

Ok, so first off, I'm firmly against censorship, and that's basically what this is. It's a governmental group of individuals making a company a scapegoat which is nothing new. (see: Howard Stern)

Secondly, holding a company responsible for hackers is completely asinine, that's like holding Head and Shoulders responsible for me ejaculating in the shampoo bottles at the supermarket. I'm guessing they didn't have any intention of delivering shampoo filled with semen, but feh, maybe they did, and maybe the FTC should charge them for it.


Monday, June 12, 2006

When Mages Attack

The ESA has recently located (thanks to it's XMM-newton X-ray satellite) a huge fireball cutting a swath across the nearby galaxy Abel 3266. (nearby being millions of light years away)

The fireball (actually a comet), is 3 million light year across (or roughly 5 billion times the size of our solar system).

See, this is why D&D instituted a spell cap, because right here we have an example of a level 60 mage casting fireball at some rival wizard, but instead of just smiting him, he roasts his world and whole solar system.

That's the wizard you don't piss off. Hey buddy, how ya been? Want to go out for a coffee? My treat.

Full Article Here


Pirate Bay back and kicking, x2!

According to an article in the Local (a Swedish news site in English) , traffic has doubled to the Pirate Bay since the police raids a few weeks back.

Lo' and behold, this act of piracy by the motion picture association has led to increased numbers of the other pirate nation.

There is no bad publicity I suppose. There is a very small line between famous and infamous, and to the average Joe Snow there isn't one.

Welcome back Pirate Bay, we love ya!


We're still slumping says top analysts, well, no shit

According to the NPD Group, video game sales have dropped 10 percent in the month of May due to a still shakey market of consumers waiting for next-gen products and games.

A few titles bumped sales in the industry, like Oblivion for the XBOX 360, but those boosts are short lived as people continue to hold out for key titles this fall as well as the launches of both the Wii and the PS3.

I think it's funny that market analysts bother doing these tests, I mean, all of us developers know that we're in a slump, there's a slump in ever transition year. Once all the new systems are released things pop right back to normal, it happens everytime.


Friday, June 09, 2006

A political debate on Internet freedoms

The BBC has recently posted a great article containing two interviews, a sort of dualist view on the issue of internet piracy.

The speakers are the real joy here, for starters, you have Dan Glickman, president of the Motion Picture Association. Guess what side he's on? On the other side of the bench you have John Perry Barlow, co-founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and lyricist for THE GRATEFUL DEAD.

The article is quite good, I highly recommend reading it in it's entirety, but overall it's some great banter back and forth on topics within this field. Barlow has a tendency to make a point that he's still fairly well to do, despite the Dead's habit of letting people record their shows.

Glickman seems to be taking the stance of they will not continue to make shit loads if they allow this to continue, as opposed to saying that they will make slightly less shit loads. But I would argue that slightly less than shit loads is still, mathematically proven (I had an engineer do the proof), shit loads.

But the article culminates with the last few lines said by Barlow.

"I've got good news and bad news and good news. And the good news is that you guys have managed to buy every major legislative body on the planet, and the courts are even with you. So you've done a great job there and you should congratulate yourself.

But you know the problem is - the bad news is that you're up against a dedicated foe that is younger and smarter that you are and will be alive when you're dead. You're 55 years old and these kids are 17 and they're just smarter than you. So you're gonna lose that one.

But the good news is that you guys are mean sons of bitches and you've been figuring out ways of ripping off audiences and artists for centuries....." - Barlow

Full Article Here


Nanoparticles, the future of porn is here!

Researchers at the University of Nebraska have made a new kind of film designed to give robots a sense of touch.

This film allows the robots to (through pressure on different areas as the film is moved across the surface) detect depressions and generate a small amount of light visible from a camera.

The hopes for this technology is that it will be used in minimal access surgery and advanced robotics. My take on the situation? This will undoubtedly be stolen and used for porn. Porn dealers will have buckets of nanites with these feelers, and they will dump them near unsuspecting sleeping girls on trains/airplanes etc...

The future of voyeur? Ok, I'm sick, yeah, I know, but hey, what else could this be useful for? Besides, something about a girl being swarmed by little robots is kind of sexy.


Thursday, June 08, 2006

Louisiana continues south's trend of dictating what knowledge is allowed to youth

The Louisiana senate has passed a bill today (HB1381) which further stifles the sale of violent video games to minors, a bill co-authored by the notorious jack Thompson, enemy of all that is good and pure.

The exact wording of the bill seems sketchy, saying that it is illegal to sell/rent games to minors if an "average person" believes it would "appeal to the minor's morbid interest in violence"; or if the game in question "depicts violence in a manner patently offensive to prevailing standards"; and finally if the game "lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value for minors."

Anyone found guilty of breaking this law can expect to be slapped with anything from a $2000 fine or even up to 1 year in prison.

What worries me here is the use of "average person". Laws are important, they keep us safe while we sleep, they prevent tyranical leaders from going all gestapo on the citizens. Hurray laws. But when laws are written with a phrase as uncertain as "average person" I get worried. There is no such thing as an average person, last time I checked average was impossible to gauge because everyone is odd in their own way. So by "average" do they mean right-wing christians with a distaste for freedom? Because that's obviously who passed the bill.

I'm telling you, eventually we (being the left-wing or nonaffiliated (see: enlightened)) will be huddled in NYC and California, our last bastions of non-religious imposed freedom. People scare me.


Half-Life movie to float in limbo

In a recent interview with Gabe Newell, co-founder and managing director of Valve, he says that while the idea of a Half-Life movie is not out of the question, he will not let it happen until a decent script gets written for it.

According to Newell the movie industry tends to bastardize game licenses by producing shoddy works that have no real theatrical quality. They are running a train on this cash cow, and we, the ever loyal and hopefull (to a fault) fans continue to throw money in the garbage whenever the next game turned movie blockbuster hits the big screen.

Well geeze, I don't know what Newell is talking about, there's been plenty of really great video game movies. I'll name a few, Doom, Alone in the Dark, House of the Dead, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider 2, Mortal Kombat 2, Resident Evil 2, Street Fighter, Wing Commander, and my personal favorite, Super Mario Brothers. I mean, not all of those movies could have sucked right? Right? Come on, Jean Claude Van mother fuckin' Dam was Guile! It gets no better than that right? Right?


Yeah ok, so those movies sucked. But maybe the next one will be different right? Right?

Full Article Here


Wednesday, June 07, 2006

China furthers the blocking of information

For those that don't know, China is the biggest Communist, *cough* I mean "democratic" nation in the world. As such, they are really big into censoring everything their people see, *cough* I mean free speech and freedom of information.

Over the past years China has been increasing the censorship they have placed on the internet. Consider it a huge digital wall. Much like their Great Wall, this wall is designed to keep out a "threat", only this threat isn't angry Sword wielding Mongolians, it's information about the world that the propagandists deem too dangerous and/or not needed.

It seems that recently China bas begun the internet embargo of information received via the international Google website search engine. While the standard international version seems to be slamming against the mack-daddy of all firewalls, the censored and government approved google ( is still fully operational.

It's hard to believe that things like this still happen, and for some reason I keep thinking back to this really amazing book I read once, about a crazed government who had total control and everything not sactioned by the powers of the nation were a crime. But naw, things like that don't really happen, I must be imagining things.


Arcade hype still alive and kicking in Japan

I look back on my life and remember the warm fuzzy feeling I used to get when walking into an arcade. The world was nothing but possibilities, what machine built of metal composite wood would suck away my money today?

MK1? The Simpsons Arcade? Street Fighter 2?

Well, whatever it happened to be, over the past years arcades have seen a decline in their playerbase, possibility due to the advances in home systems. Why run a grinding mill on your pocket book and coin purse at the arcade when you can buy the same game, play at home, and play it as much as you'd like?

Well as such the industry has waned, with very little new and exciting machines being sent to arcades to encourage its once manic playerbase back.

Over in Japan however they are coming up with ever more creative arcade games, ones that really couldn't (or shouldn't) be played at home. Konami has released "To Kyu Okoku Gashaaaan!" or "Ball Throwing Kingdom Smaaaash!" in English.

The game itself is comprised of 4 possible player locations, each with a resevoir of balls. The players must then compete in all sorts of game which seem to boil down to hitting hazards and AI with the balls before their on screen avatars are murders ruthlessly.

These are the kinds of games arcades should really have, I don't need an arcade to play pac-man, I want to be excited and involved with other people. Once a game removes the multi-player social event the arcade loses it's value.

So check out the frantic action of Gashaaaan! I don't know about you, but I'd drop some money to play this game for a while.

I want to throw balls at the screen!


Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Pee-wee is back, boy oh boy was he missed

Remember that really creepy show from your childhood Saturday mornings? You know, the one with the flying red bicycle, the decapitated arab head in a jewelry box, and that huge talking couch?

That's right, Pee-Wee's Playhouse is back thanks to Adult Swim on Cartoon Network.

Cartoon Network has officially bought all the rights to the full 45 episode series, with plans to air the show Monday-Thursday at 11pm starting July 10.

The show won 22 Emmy's during it's original stint, but sadly blew up when Pee-Wee actor Paul Reuben was caught fiddling with his dip stick at a seedy movie house in Florida.

Nice to have you back Pee-Wee, you mentally warped me as a child and now I can record the series so that my children can once again know the glories of Jambi's chant "Mecca-lecca hi mecca hiney ho."

Is it just me or is that a little sexual in nature? Dirty naughty bodiless Arab.


How do you spell sexy

I was recently browsing through digg for god only knows what when I stumbled upon a link to a site I haven't been to in a while. They guys here have recently managed to sandwich pack an xbox in a reasonably portable version. From the pictures the system seems to be about the same size at the standard box, except that it's in a custom case with the Mini PSone screen embedded into it.

This is pretty sexy, it's kinda makes me warm on the inside, but when you make something this large, "portable" is a fairly strong word. I don't see anyone tucking this bad boy into their pocket and taking it on the flight with them.

It is pretty slick how all the cases are custom vacuum molds though, and his NES portable is slick, though the price tag is a bit high to play Super Mario Brothers.

EDIT: Looks like the righteous hammer of God ( has sentenced the servers to be smashed into nonexistence for a while. So take my word for it, the whole process is slick.


Sony bashing lack of blu-ray?

Kaz Hirai, SCEA president questioned Microsoft for their lack of utilizing the next-gen-ness of blu-ray by default in the XBOX360.

Microsoft opted for HD-DVD as their medium, which provides a substantially smaller capacity than the fledgling blu-ray technology.

According to Hirai blu-ray is the wave of the future, and they are building the PS3 to reflect a system that will not simply be replaced in 5 years once it's outdated. Also, Hirai seemingly bashed Microsoft for possibly having to use multiple discs since their supported medium holds so much less.

So, my view here is that doesn't Hirai remember a little company called Square Soft? When was the last time they released a good game that was on one disc? I'm thinking back to when they were making games on cartridges.

Sure, having one disc is nice and all, but Hirai avoided answering the big flaw with blu-ray... the speed. Sony has gone with blu-ray, and as far as any knows, a 1xblu-ray, which is substantially slower than the 12xHD DVD drive the 360 is toting. Can anyone say load times?

I'd take faster gameplay speeds and less loading times over the joy? of having only one disc per game any day of the week.

Likewise, to play games at a DVD comparable rate the PS3 will basically be running ahead of where you're playing thanks to it's hefty processor, and then will buffer the data. So Sony is basically compensating for a lack luster gaming media by overclocking themselves.

Buy a Wii.


Monday, June 05, 2006

DC Studios falls into a State of Emergency

Montreal based game developer DC Studios recently closed the doors on it's Edinburgh office due to the huge commercial failure of State of Emergency 2.

The 29 person Scotland based office closed it's doors after the sales of SoE2 were substantially below expectations.

DC Studios' primary office in Montreal, employing 55, will remain in standard working order as the company seeks to gain some of it's lost revenue back in other projects.

So, my take on this... First off, it's always sad to see a developer begin a crash. Being in the industry makes you respect the work of others and how hard it can be some times to stay afloat, especially now during the transition years. (The industry lulls between system switches) But I'm baffled as to how DC expected State of Emergency to be a flag ship for them.

The first game (State of Emergency) was utterly horrible, it's primary selling point being that it wore the "Rockstar Seal of Gold". It came out at a time when Rockstar was eyed to the consumer as the edgiest and coolest thing since sliced bread, so their new title trumping even more violence and senseless acts of violence had to be great right?

Secondly who in their right mind would purchase a sequel to a bad game that totes the impressive feature of removing all of the minutely entertaining features of the first. DC tried to push a plot-driven storyline in a license geared towards hysterical (and meaningless) violence. The story was lack luster (read: sucked) and they removed melee combat. (read: whoops)

Well lucky for Rockstar their name brought throngs of people into the stores to purchase their game which reeked of a 1 month dev cycle.

DC was of course not nearly as lucky and in turn they crashed and burned, or is it burning, seeing as how they are still probably on fire? Feh, you get the point.


Those crazy Japanese and their overly sexual fighters

A new game is in it's beta stage over in Japan currently, called Jingi Storm. A 2d fighter starring just about every fetish a 15... or 50 year old Japanese man has.

The combatants that are seemingly made available include a peppy police girl, a shy grade schooler, a voluptuous nurse, the average girl next door prep-student, a naughty pedo-maid, the sexy catgirl and of course, the large breasted woman with glasses.

According to a post on MMC, a beta test was held over the weekend which laid to rest some doubts about the game's validitity. Rumors had of course circulated that the game was a farse being that it was said to be geared at arcades and adult games are not allowed there, and for the fact that the developer of the game continued to be annonomous.

Well, the beta test came and went, the game is real, and is a 3d fighter (read: cry), but the kicker for this is that the combatants aren't the pretty little ladies you would assume. It turns out that the fighters are all MEN. Yes, that's right, a game geared towards wet dreams features an all male cast of playables. The women are nothing more than a desired avatar at the beginning and end of the match.

As I stated before, the game is in 3d, but there are 2d illustrations before and after the matches. At the beginning the characters are introduced, and then when someone wins the match a static image of the losers girl pops up and she is forced to strip. There is sadly no quirky animation here, just 4 clothing regions which are phased to translucent depending on how badly the player was defeated.

So you're rewarded for winning well, but I'd say not really. I understand this game wasn't going to be the next Street Fighter, or hell, even Marvel vs Capcom for us here in the States (read: not as good as Street Fighter), but I was hoping for something more. Maybe it's due to the lack of good 2d fighters nowadays, or my thing for anime girls, who knows.

Oh, and my pick? The plucky police girl of course (read: You're Under Arrest)


Pirate Bay makes it's valiant return

Earlier this weekend The Pirate Bay made it's presence felt again with the site return with a new scathing logo taking a direct "shot" at the people behind the raid last week.

The site was not available for searches and torrents, but was in the process of returning to it's former glory.

The site is of course back up and running today, for all those lil pirates out their looking for their share of the booty, both figurative and not.


Friday, June 02, 2006

Hackers attack Swedish Police Website

After the raids of the Swedish torrent site Pirate Bay earlier this week, Hackers assaulted the official police website of Sweden by directing a large inflow of traffic to it bogging it down.

Police Spokesman Lars Lindahl spoke about the matter saying, "It is quite possible, but that is only speculation." concerning the Hacker's motives when asked about any possible connnections between the attack and the raids on the Pirate Bay servers.

The police should have realized that there are very dangerous, shady fans of sites like these and this sort of retaliation should be expected.

Somehow I'm reminded of Fight Club, the people that are angered in situations like this are the every day citizen who provides services everyone else needs. These people are vitally important to our world, but often get overlooked when decisions are made.

In the immortal words of Tyler Durden, "do not fuck with us".

*cheer for the obligatory Fight Club reference*

As a side note to this report, Sweden's Parliament Constitution Committee should begin investigating the actual cause of the original raid on Pirate Bay after the SVT, a Swedish public broadcaster made a report saying that the Justice Ministry took action on a request from the United States. This matters because Sweden's Constitution does not allow ministers to directly control police activity (see: collusion). So we'll see how this one turns out.

EDIT: Madsen over at LG had a pretty funny comic based on this debacle. Little Gamers


China striving for #2

According to iResearch, an internet market research firm, China will be overtaking South Korea this year in the Online Games Market size. South Korea has been a strong competitor in the past, holding strongly onto #2, but the chances of them holding onto the title when a 1.3 billion person juggernaut decides to take the silver seem pretty slim.

South Korea is expected to hit the $960 million mark this year while China is expected to jump 28 percent, allowing them to ting the $970 million tier.

While these numbers are staggering, it currently seems unlikely that China will be expanding into the US any time soon, as they have predominently been developing products for internal use only. Major asian competitors like NCSoft have gone ahead in the previous years and made the west connection with the successful titles Lineage II, City of Heroes, and Guild Wars, to name a few.

Shanda Entertainment, one of the largest Chinese based companies has a healthy sum of MMO's, but again, I fear they will never hit ours shores. This of course isn't really a concern for China I suppose being that they have a large enough population to never market outside their country.

I kinda hope this will spark a bitter rivally between the two nations yielding a monetary flux in the gil-seller market for MMO's. I would like to see Koreans and Chinese fighting (see: lowering their prices for immaterial money) for my business. Drive the prices down! Come on China! I want FFXI money in my Happy Meals!


Thursday, June 01, 2006

Infinium Labs up to old tricks?

In a trading statement yesterday Infinium Labs, the company behind one of the largest supposed cases of Vaporware in Internet History (the Phantom), has said that they will be releasing their first on-shelf product since the company's inception.

The Lapboard, a combination keyboard/mouse designed to allow for use of both while sitting on your couch, was supposed to be released mid-2006 by their latest outlooks, but it is now being pushed back to October.

Infinium Labs has still made no announcement as to when they plan to release their gaming service.

I remember a time when companies made systems, released them, and then the hardware crashed and burned on the homemarket (not arcade) because of huge prices and lack of games. Thanks Neo Geo, and we look forward to your additions to this genre Sony.

So what I'm saying is, Infinium, everyone will hate your system, so just release it and get the razz'ing over with. You're acting like the 1st grader who sits by his teacher during recess because he's afraid the kids on the playground will beat him up. Just be a man, suck it up, take one on the jaw, and forget about this whole "Phantom" thing, trust me, this is what we want.

Full Article Here


Microsoft bailing on Backwards Compatibility?

New interviews with Moore concerning XBOX360 have dredged up 2 new takes on the system. For one, they are looking into increasing the size of the 360 harddrive. Secondly, they are apparently shucking some of their previous claims on backwards compatibility with the original XBOX.

Moore seemed to have spoke as though they've done so much (a few hundred games set up to run on the new system), and we as players should be perfectly satisfied with what we have received. Personally I hate it when companies tell us, the consumer, what we want. I know what I want, and frankly I highly doubt a random CEO does. I personally love backwards compatibility, a large push as to why I love Sony systems (loads up Final Fantasy Tactics on his PS2).

While I think this is a flawed move on Microsoft's part, I don't think it will matter however on the large scale simply because of the huge difference in price between them and Sony. But perhaps it will be a point which sets the XBOX360 back in the running giving the Wii more appeal.

Full Article Here


The Swedish Pirate Bay avoids sinking

According to the top of their website, they will be up and running within a few days, I'll fill this in once more information is released.

Until then, check out The Pirate Bay for up to date changes.