Wednesday, November 20, 2013

I have moved!

I am now using Tumblr. You can find me here:

All the stuff I have posted on this blog has been posted again on there, and any new posts will be posted over there exclusively. I already have one up! Go check it out!

...Sorry Blogspot. Your stat-tracking was cool. I'll miss it. It felt gross but also kinda cool to know things about your audience you had no right or reason to know.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Why Oblivion Is Better Than Skyrim

I’ve decided to try to stick to a bi-weekly release schedule, which means I'm late. While there’s a number of things I could review (Divekick, You’re Next, Now You See Me, Stoker, Kick-Ass 2, Jeff Who Lives at Home, Visitor Q), I just don’t feel like it. So I figured I’d try something else and see how it goes.

Before I go into why it is that Oblivion is superior to Skyrim, I think it’s important to establish how I feel about the Elder Scrolls series as a whole. Theoretically, I’d say The Elder Scrolls is the most appealing, ambitious, awe-inspiring idea in games (that's not to say it's the most creative or interesting or anything else that actually deserves acclaim). I’d say we can all agree that what we ultimately want from The Elder Scrolls is a perfect simulation of life in a fantasy realm. I’d say we can also all agree that none of the Elder Scrolls games have come even remotely close to achieving this. Of course, it would be unreasonable to expect such a thing with the extremely limited technology of today. We would need computers a hundred thousand times stronger than those we currently use to be able to run such a game. If we ever do get this game, it would be more than just a game, it would be another reality. Because it would be another reality, we wouldn't want it to adhere to game design philosophies because we wouldn't want to notice the fact that it was artificially created. Unfortunately, we don’t have that game, so we'll have to make do with The Elder Scrolls as we currently know it. And while it is a game, it should approach its gameyness cautiously. It should strive for immersion, but not realism. Realism is hard to do. Perhaps it should not try to create an illusory living, breathing world, but instead create a world that functions as a vessel for good gameplay.

I'd also like to say I'm not going to address the many, many flaws with the Elder Scrolls franchise. That's not what I'm writing about.

Let's begin. 

If I were to put my reasons for liking Oblivion more than Skyrim into one word, it would be “smooth”. That’s it, really. Oblivion is damn smooth. It’s really the only smooth Bethesda game.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Ichi the Killer (2001)

It's interesting to see how desensitised we've become in just over a decade. When Ichi the Killer (Japanese title: Koroshiya Ichi) was initially released, it was banned in several countries and was released after strict, heavy edits were performed in others. In 2013, I, an 18 year-old who looks his age, walked into a shop in Melbourne, Australia and bought an unedited director's cut of the film without being asked for ID. When I watched the film, while I certainly found it extremely violent and, at times, quite uncomfortable, it never even crossed my mind that this movie would have stirred up any controversy upon its release. While I don't think society's growing tolerance for ultraviolence ruined the film for me at all, it would have been fascinating to have watched it while living in the context of the values of the year 2001.

Monday, July 29, 2013

World War Z (2013)

Once again, it's been a while. I'm bad, I know. I was actually going to release this review the day after World War Z came out, but I just never got around to finishing it. I'm not sure if it's even playing in cinemas anymore.

Whether you've read the book this was based on will strongly affect your reaction to this film. It could be argued that that's a bad thing and that this should be examined as stand-alone from the book. That's a completely legitimate argument, but I'm afraid I disagree.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Iron Man 3 (2013)

Hello. It's been a long time.

I can't say I was excited for Iron Man 3. The trailer looked a little too "let's be Batman" for me, and Shane Black directing it doesn't get me excited. Having said that, it's not like I was dreading it. (I mean, I did see it). Having now seen it, I can say that I care about it far more than I did before, although not for the right reasons.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Top Ten Films of 2012

Hello again! It's been a couple weeks, I know. But the Oscars happened and that inspired me to finally throw this list up, so here we go! I'm going to give 3 reasons why each film deserves to be on the list. I'm doing it this way partly because I'm lazy and partly because I've reviewed some of these films and don't see the point in repeating myself. Also, these aren't in any particular order.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Les Misérables (2012) - Mini Review

I went into Les Mis cautiously optimistic. On the one hand it won pretty much every Golden Globe award, but on the other hand it's a classical period-piece musical set in France with a primarily non-American cast directed by the guy that did The King's Speech, so of course it won those awards. I'd just seen Silver Linings Playbook a few days prior, so I was excited to be surprised again by a film of a generally low-quality genre. To put it simply, Les Mis didn't exactly do that for me.