Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Some Kind of Creepy Things

Here, have a video of creepy things.

(If you're interested in Yu-Gi-Oh!, I have a few thoughts on a recent character over on my sister's Yu-Gi-Oh! blog.)

-Signing off.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Invid's Guide to the Star Wars Universe: Alien Species #22

211. Devaronians. Male Devaronians are devil-horned devilish guys. (One was in the cantina scene, smiling and moving his eyes in very obvious fashion. Supposedly, he was really enjoying the music. Also, he was wanted for war crimes and was known colloquially as "the Butcher of Montellian Serat.") Female Devaronians are furrier and lack horns, and from pictures may be larger on average.

Somehow, Devaronians are similar to the devils or demons of hundreds of mythologies of the Star Wars galaxy; this might have something to do with them being among the first species to leave their homeworld, some 27,000 years before the series present. Male Devaronians are considerd violent and are not permitted to have political power in their own society. Also, males are primarily carnivorous, with only some individuals being able to live on diets with large amounts of plant material, while females are omnivorous.

Rating: 3/5. There are lots of interesting details in there, really. Of course, the reason they exist is because they needed an extra costume for the cantina scene, and they were able to pick up a secondhand devil costume on the cheap.

212. Devlikks. Devlikks 1) are ugly, and 2) don't live very long-they apparently are prone to going senile by age 9.

Rating: 2/5. There's not too much to go on, and I find them unpleasant to behold, but the idea of a super-short-lived species is the germ of something interesting.

213. Dhuryam. Dhuryam are Yuuzhan Vong-created lifeforms also known as "world brains." They are designed to maintain the ecosystems of Yuuzhan Vong "Vongformed" (i.e. terraformed) worlds by controlling nearly every living thing on the planet. One was placed on Coruscant after the Vong conquered it.

And Jacen Solo, Han and Leia's son, befriended it. (He turned all Sithy later, but when he was a kid, he was always befriending animals and other strange things. Sadly, it died, and that probably didn't help Jacen with the whole Sith thing.)

Rating: 3/5. I don't like the Yuuzhan Vong generally, but the dhuryam and its relatives amuse me. Especially since Jacen talked Coruscant's dhuryam into causing bugs to bite all the Yuuzhan Vong. All of them.

214. Diamala. The Diamala (singular Diamal) are another group who protected the Bothans during the Caamas Document crisis (I've talked so much about this it'd be easier to say "just read all those other posts-they explain it). At the time, they had a large trade network and some of their least favorite people were also the most vocal enemies of the Bothans, so that might explain it.

Rating: 3/5. They've got some interesting things about them.

215. Diathim. The Diathim are the "angels" of the moons of Iego that Anakin mentioned in his smooth-for-a-nine-year-old pickup line in Episode I. And that means that this post has angels and devils in it. Huh.

They're also capable of flight, do not eat, and can survive in space.

Rating: 3/5. Perfectly understandable why there would be superstitions about them.

216. Dilonexans. Dilonexans apparently suffer from a specific kind of food allergy.

Rating: 2/5. Normally, I would not be so kind to such limited information, but that's rather amusing.

217. Dimeans. We know little about the Dimeans except that they are apparently big, mean, and have scary teeth. One threw a Jedi into his ship's reactor core and accidentally blew up his ship that way.

Rating: 3/5. It's funny; there's no picture of them, even though they were mentioned in a computer game. They're kind of amusing.

218. Dimoks. Dimoks are native to Dimok. They had a war with some other guys, and then the Empire showed up and stomped on both of them, prompting them to ally with their old enemies... and they both still got stomped.

Rating: 1/5. Stories like this are a dime a dozen, really.

219. Diollans. Diollans are featherless avians. They have sensitive enough senses of smell to notice Rodian pheromones are repulsive, but since smelliness is considered an unsavory trait of most Rodians by most species, that doesn't mean much of anything.

Rating: 1/5. Fail.

220. Dolandu. They have white fur, and are known to respect Jedi.

Huh, don't most folks at least sort of respect Jedi? It's a good idea to respect somebody with a laser sword, after all...

Rating: 3/5. This is consolation for me not having time to really go over them carefully, because I'm in a hurry.

-Signing off.

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Terror

Here, have a video of a good-sized crab.

"Tatos the Terror" is apparently this crab's individual name, as it is somebody's pet.

I don't know if I envy or feel sorry for people who live in areas where it's possible to keep coconut crabs and other unusual animals as pets.

-Signing off.

Friday, November 25, 2011


Specifically, what is up with candy commercials for the UK?

I mean, really? (I figure it must be for the UK because I've never heard of this stuff. Correct me if you know better...)

-Signing off.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Greatly Belated Book Review: Empire From the Ashes

Empire From the Ashes (find it for free here) is a trilogy-turned-collected-volume that is one of the earliest works by David Weber, who is probably best-known for his Honor Harrington series. (His earliest credit on Wikipedia's list of his published works is for some book in 1990; his next is Mutineer's Moon in 1991, which was the first part of this story.)

It's pretty good, especially since you can read it for free, but its quality in and of itself is not specifically the reason why I felt like reviewing it.

No, that would be because it reads like a checklist of his favored plot points and story features.

Here's just a few of the things I've noticed, based on things entirely off the top of my head and only from books of his that I've randomly read:

Numerous and extremely powerful ancient aliens who nonetheless never advance technologically in time periods spanning millions of years. (This book has the Achuultani; the later Safehold series, of which I have read one book, has the Gbaba, which may be an even more extreme example of this. It should be noted that Weber does not use many advanced aliens in his works.)

Humanity has fallen back from being extremely advanced spacefarers to stuck on a single primitive colony world. (Notably, Empire From the Ashes has two worlds shown which this applies to, and it actually happened at least two more times; this is the central precept of the Safehold series.)

A contrast between huge-scale combat between spacefaring civilizations and smaller-scale warfare in medieval/Renaissance-class cultures. (Earth's moon turns out to have been destroyed by Dahak, a massive warship from an ancient human civilization, in order to camouflage itself as the moon, and it was a ship tasked with picket duty [it was also stated that it could have vaporized Earth itself]. On the other hand, the planet Pardal was stuck in a sort of medieval stasis for about 45,000 years. Safehold, again, has a lot of this; a certain amount of it can also be found in the Empire of Man/Prince Roger series.)

Characters are apparently killed and believed missing for a period of months or years, but they're protagonists and still alive, struggling for the entire time to make their way back with limited resources. (Five of the characters were nearly assassinated by the self-destruction of a ship similar to Dahak, mentioned above, but the ship jettisoned them beforehand because it had special programming not to harm them [it's too much of a story to explain], and they spent about two years traveling to the nearest solar system, and found that it was inhabited by primitive humans who were controlling a quarantine system [ditto], but which had what they needed to get home if they could just get a hold of it. In Empire of Man/Prince Roger, a trilogy's worth is about the journey across a planet with varying levels of cultural sophistication to get a spaceship, only to discover that they're now wanted outlaws. And in Honor Harrington, the titular character was once thought dead but managed to escape to a prison planet, where she was able to stage a prison break.)

Religion is used as a tool to hold back technological development. (I'm not going to go too deeply into this, but it's a feature shared, again, with Safehold. It's almost as if the Pardalian sequences intrigued Weber enough that he wanted to do more with them than he had space for, and so he decided to write an entire series about a variation of them. It should be noted that these religions were generally ironically paired with technology to help maintain them.)

Extensive explorations of the implications of differences between the less advanced cultures and both our own counterparts to them and the advanced cultures encountering them are a must. (The planet Pardal, stuck in medieval stasis, had a number of native animals that made for differences in military development between their cultures and ours. Safehold, surprisingly, doesn't explore this aspect much [as far as I recall], but it's a pretty big deal in Empire of Man/Prince Roger. As for advanced versus less advanced, there's usually a lot of adding to the primitive side's tech base in sustainable ways and limited, careful use of the advanced side's limited technological resources and transhuman abilities. It should be noted that this was usually hidden in Empire From the Ashes and the Safehold series and given a mystical explanation when revealed to the "primitives," but in Empire of Man/Prince Roger, they don't bother doing anything but using it. Of course, the people of Marduk, who happen to be the only nonhuman example of "primitives," know a bit better than those others, but still...)

There are probably (well, definitely, actually) plenty more comparisons that could be made, but I don't want to list everything because 1) you could read it for yourself quite easily, and 2) I'm tired right now and I think I'm pretty close to done.

Empire From the Ashes is definitely a good read; if you don't mind reading a long text on the computer and like military science fiction, it's a darned good deal.

-Signing off.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Invid's Guide to the Star Wars Universe: Alien Species #21

201. Dantari. The Dantari appear to essentially be cavepeople with wonky proportions (sometimes). That's pretty boring, but these cavefolk worship Imperial war machines and stormtroopers. (They apparently witnessed a battle of some kind, and were particularly taken with the big walkers.)

Rating: 3/5. That's an awesome cultural tidbit.

202. Dashade. The Dashade are cool-looking guys who are resistant to the Force (presumably mostly the mind powers) and to radiation. (Yay, randomness!) They are thus often recruited as anti-Jedi assassins. (It's debated as to whether or not one of them was in the cantina scene.)

Rating: 4/5. Eh, I just like 'em.

203. Dashta eels. Despite being regular little old eels, some Dashta eels are sapient. Also, many non-sapient Dashta eels are Force-sensitive, and supposedly "the first species known to be so."

I guess I could believe that some of the other ones are too obscure...

Rating: 3/5. They're mostly just weird, but not in a bad way.

204. Dawferim. Dawferim are known for having a five hundred year long feud with some other guys. ...And other than the fact that they formed a defense coalition to handle said feud, that's it.

Rating: 1/5. I've got nothin' to say.

205. Dazouri. The Dazouri are little guys who are generally supposed to be shrewd and rational, but when upset they get huge and become homicidal maniacs. So they're a species that literally hulks out.

Rating: 3/5. I'm forgiving them their blatant defiance of mass conservation.

206. Dbarians. Dbarians are apparently essentially asexual octopus/cuttlefish people. They are described as "a worrisome race." As in "cause for others to worry" or "worry a lot themselves?" Based on the fact that they apparently also spend lots of time "evaluating" things, I'd guess that it's the latter.

Rating: 2/5. It'd be nicer if less ambiguous words were used in this kind of thing, although I don't think that affected the rating. (There's just not quite enough there to be exciting.)

207. Defel. The Defel are also known as wraiths because despite being huge hairy types, they usually look to most other species like they are merely shadows; i.e. they border on invisible in most conditions. The most notable Defel is probably one who appeared in a couple of Timothy Zahn's Heir to the Empire books. Who was he? Some random thug.

Rating: 3/5. Something interesting that I think was lost later on is that Timothy Zahn also indicated that Defel (and a number of other species, most notably the Noghri) were more difficult for most to sense with the Force.

208. Delorf. The Delorf... may have been a myth.

Rating: 3/5. I find the idea that there are mythical sapient beings even in an ancient, well-explored, and highly advanced place to be entertaining.

209. Delphanians. The Delphanians sound very ugly, and apparently frequently pierced their lips, sometimes to the point where said piercings jangled.

Incidentally, I find lip piercings unpleasant.

Rating: 3/5. They have a bit more info than that. Incidentally, they were created for Death Troopers, a Star Wars zombie story.

210. Delrakkins. The Delrakkins apparently resemble lizards and live underground. (Is that just a clumsy attempt at describing them as reptilian? Because not all reptilian creatures are lizards, and except for snakes, in fact, most creatures we call reptiles aren't very closely related to each other or lizards. Crocodiles are much more closely related to birds than lizards and snakes, and turtles are off by themselves somewhere. End zoological nerd rant.) The Delrakkins also were once given poisoned bacta (that stuff that was used to heal Luke up in Empire Strikes Back), although the Delrakkins were saved.

Rating: 3/5. I think they get a point because their name is aesthetically pleasing to me.

-Signing off.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Game Review: Ghost Hacker

Ghost Hacker is one of a multitude of tower defense games that I've played.

It's of the "non-mazing" variety, i.e. the enemy moves on a preset path (which, I would suppose, makes it much easier to program). These are my less favored type of tower defense, although I still enjoy them.

What sets this apart from the average tower defense game is the tower customization system. Each tower has two or three "hard points" on it that you can attach an upgrade to. Whereas in most tower defense games, an upgrade is just a perk, here they're half the point or more of the game. Each one grants a special benefit. Each tower is also unique in where it can be placed and what it does. A lot of gameplay is figuring out what combinations are coolest or most effective. (Hint: Splash damage modifiers stack.)

Enemies in a game like this can also make the difference between being generic and interesting; the enemies here are definitely unique and interesting. That said, they're also total (expletive deleted) to deal with.

I think Ghost Hacker is a very interesting game, although it's a bit of a pain to play at times. I can recommend trying it.

-Signing off.

Monday, November 21, 2011


What do you want to bet that there was a sudden plummet in popularity for the candy that this ad is for once it aired?


-Signing off.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Violin Video Game Music

Violins are pretty cool. So is this chick who is playing one.

I don't have anything else to say on the subject, I guess...

-Signing off.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Sesame Street Martians Investigate Mysterious Device

I think the surest sign that Sesame Street has gone in a direction I don't like is probably the rarity of segments like this on the modern program.

I mean, those guys are awesome.

It gets funnier if you imagine that this must be playing in their heads starting around 2:27.

-Signing off.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Cool Animation

I don't have too much to say on this other than "this is cool."

Well, aside from it being pretty good for a student animation.

Also, that ogre/troll/whatever reminds me of the Hulk and Doomsday-how tough is that guy?

-Signing off.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Invid's Guide to the Star Wars Universe: Alien Species #20

Finally hitting the letter "D" and also #200. (Note that I skipped "Dalek" because unlike E.T.'s species, there's no evidence that it was ever intended they were really inhabitants of the Star Wars galaxy-they're just an easter egg.)

191. Crokes. Crokes are tiny invertebrates (never larger than the hand of a large individual such as a Wookiee) who are reputed to resemble three-legged hairy snails or slugs. They're naturally aggressive and acquisitive despite this, and will apparently ruthlessly eliminate others who stand in the way of their personal gains. This lead to the Crokes suffering greatly when they made war on each other using large, carnivorous, and none-too-picky fast-breeding creatures, apparently all but destroying their populations on many of their worlds.

How, you are probably asking, did they manage to get many worlds if they're so tiny? Apparently, at least part of it comes from the fact that they could pretend to be much bigger than they actually were using Force-based techniques (Lando Calrissian Adventures villain Rokur Gepta was actually a Croke), and they may have naturally had extremely long lifespans, which would presumably be very useful in long-term plotting. How long? Rokur Gepta was 20,000 or so years old when he died of severe injuries (said severe injuries involving Lando Calrissian grabbing him and squeezing until he went squish).

Rating: 5/5. The Crokes are more implausible than a lot of Star Wars species, but in a good way-isn't it a hilarious thought that these teeny tiny things would be scheming and trying to take over planets and whatnot? (And are pretty good at it, considering?)

192. Crotok. Sapient. Alien. A species.

Rating: 0/5. AAARRRGGHHH.

193. Cthon. Cthon are basically H.P. Lovecraft-style ghouls who live on Coruscant, deep in the ground-level areas that are almost inaccessible. Some were goaded into attacking Darth Vader once. It did not end well for them.

They may have gone extinct during the Yuuzhan Vong invasion, since those jerks wrecked the place and filled it with their own preferred brands of horrible roving predators and such.

Rating: 4/5. They're pretty amusing, and more logical than their Lovecraft fiction counterparts (if the entire planet is a city and has been for millennia, it's a bit more plausible that there would be creatures like them). Ironically, there's a somewhat similar probably nonsapient species called corridor ghouls that live in the same areas.

194. Cuvacians. Cuvacians apparently have a difficult-to-translate language, because an advertiser for a translation device used their language as an example of what it could translate.

Rating: 2/5. Establishing some languages as harder to translate than others makes sense, I suppose.

195. Cyborreans. They're from Cyborrea, which is in Hutt Space. They breed Cyborrean Battle Dogs, also known as neks, which do not so much resemble dogs as tiny reptilian hippos with gland problems. Neks are frequently used as hunting and attack creatures, as they are designed to be highly resistant to weapons and stuff. They're also apparently illegal in most of the galaxy.

Rating: 3/5. I suppose it wouldn't be timely to make a Michael Vick joke at this point... Whoops.

196. Cyrillians. Reptilian guys as tall as Wookiees, they invented the DUM pit droids, those little saucer-headed robots that had all those crazy antics in Episode I.

Rating: 2/5. Eh, I liked those pit droids, although I'm sure plenty of other people didn't.

197. D'farians. The D'farians protected the Bothans during the Caamas Document crisis.

That's about it.

Rating: 2/5. Minimal information, sure, but the fact that they protected the Bothans, who were at rock-bottom in terms of popularity at that particular moment, is an intriguing suggestion of possible traits of their culture.

198. Dabi. All we know is that one of them had purchased a droid to serve as a waiter, and that droid was extremely obnoxious, leading to the owner praising a Mandalorian (who happened to be Boba Fett's granddaughter-yes, really) who destroyed its voicebox with a blaster.

Rating: 2/5. At least it's an amusing incident, but it tells us nothing about the Dabi.

199. Daimlo. Daimlo come from Daimla. (Ha!) They're fat, are probably short, have long horns and faces (although they don't resemble the Iktotchi beyond their horns, despite what the article says), and are among the species known for podracing.

Rating: 2/5. Amazing how there's a decent amount of of information there, but it says almost nothing as a whole (except that they're really ugly-my observation from the page picture, not Wookieepedia's).

200. Daltarri. They're plant things who look amusing. They apparently don't like it when their allies question them about aiding them (their allies aiding the Daltarri, that is).

Rating: 3/5. I'm not entirely sure what their cultural feature means and attempting to convey the meaning of the sentence that describes it is driving me batty, but it's there and they made an effort. Plus they look amusing.

Yaaayyy, #200.

-Signing off.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Too Many Crabs

Nature is wonderful, isn't it?

While I wouldn't enjoy walking around there, those baby crabs are genuinely adorable.

-Signing off.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles In Japan

Y'know, for a long time, I kind of forgot that the original TMNT cartoon was extremely comedic. (I was a kid [and often missed a lot of subtle things when I was a kid], I didn't get to watch a lot of episodes for various reasons, and my clearest memories of watching the show on TV involved the "red skies" seasons, which had less sunlight than Batman: The Animated Series and mostly took themselves more seriously.)

Of course, in Japan, they made "Mutant Turtles" (no "teenage" or "ninja," so far as I know) even sillier. (I've mentioned it before; if you hit the "tmnt" tag, you should find it pretty quickly.)

(Hilariously, in the second episode of this OVA, when Darth Vader Shredder and the turtles travel to Japan and encounter ninjas, they freak out-because in this version, neither group had anything to do with "actual" ninjas.)

And of course, in the UK they dropped all references to ninjas as well, calling them "hero" turtles. They also took away Michaelangelo's nunchucks in later seasons and replaced them with a rope, supposedly because 'chucks were too violent for the kiddies (like a kid is more likely to copy violence involving a relatively rare weapon than violence involving a rope?).

-Signing off.

Thursday, November 10, 2011


I used to think that Rom from Marvel Comics was the talkiest space knight ever.

I was wrong.

-Signing off.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Starring Robosaurus

Y'know, if you're going to make a clip about something obscure like this, you could at least explain that the special effects giant robot dragon thing is a real thing that appears at monster truck rallies and whatnot.

It sounds like it would have been a pretty dumb series, but I don't know that that's a bad thing.

-Signing off.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

China Still Loves Giant Robots

(I'm being self-referential, just so you know.)

Y'know, this looks like a decent CGI anime-type show from China here...

...but my favorite part is probably the song. (It's definitely my sister's favorite part.)

-Signing off.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Invid's Guide to the Star Wars Universe: Alien Species #19

181. Cosians. Cosians are described as having beaks and clubbed tails, which makes me think that they're a bit like bipedal ankylosaurs.

More importantly, a Jedi Cosian uses the lightsaber equivalent of a sword cane.


Rating: 4/5. Sure, the species itself has little information, but an ankylosaur alien with a lightsaber cane makes me smile.

182. Courataines. Courataines are known to be squishy and to need help breathing in what we would consider normal atmospheres because of their homeworld's low gravity and thin atmosphere.

Rating: 3/5. For some guys who appeared in the background of one of the Han Solo Adventures briefly (so briefly I don't even recall them), they've got some decent material to work with as a starting point.

183. Covallon. The Covallon basically resemble big hairy reptile dogs, but are just as intelligent as humans. Since Imperials are speciesist jerks, a few Covallon used this to their advantage and were "adopted" as "pets" by high-ranking Imperial officers in order to spy on said officers.

Rating: 5/5. All power to the opposable-thumbless master spies who are cool-looking reptile lion dog things.

184. Coway. The Coway are big tough primitive types, for the most part. They look relatively human, but are covered in red down and all of them have these hilarious feather mohawk crests.

Hilariously, the entry for them claims that their foods would be poison to them if their digestive systems weren't so powerful. No duh, any foods that you can't digest will at the very least be inedible and poison-like.

Rating: 3/5. They're basically bigger, meaner Ewoks who are easier to take seriously. (Seriously, the first story to feature them was actually published years before Return of the Jedi, and they were basically exactly like Ewoks but lived in caves instead.)

185. Coynites. The Coynites are a rather typical dumb warrior race for the most part ("ME HATE WEAK PEOPLE! WEAK PEOPLE ALL DIE!" etc.) but have two interesting notes.

First, they have a physiognomy that would result in a possible 250-year lifespan, but because they're all idiots who constantly tear into each other, their actual average lifespan is 53 years. Good gravy, but they're dumb.

Second, despite a very humanlike shape and general appearance, they are described as giving birth to "litters" of two to six, implying that six isn't an unusual litter. Ouch. (It also notes that each litter is made up of only one sex.)

Rating: 3/5. I hate dumb warrior races (just because they're violent doesn't mean they'll be dumb), but the biological details amuse me.

186. Cragmoloids. Cragmoloids are elephant people. Elephant people who spent time entirely enslaved, and who lost their homeworld to heavy stripmining by a megacorporation.

More relevant to the modern Cragmoloid is the very real issue of being poached for his or her valuable tusks. While they think it's humiliating, most of them saw their own tusks off to ensure their own safety.

Rating: 4/5. I find their delicate societal position rather unrealistic for the most part, but also hecka funny in a grim sort of way.

187. Cranscoc. The Cranscoc are slow-breeding insectoids who communicate by changing their own colors. Cranscoc own Spaarti Creations, which those familiar with the EU will note as sharing the name of the cloning apparatus used in the Timothy Zahn-penned Star Wars novels.

Not surprising, as they appeared in a Zahn-penned story to explain why Spaarti cloning cylinders were in his books when the prequels used guys named Kaminoans instead.

Rating: 3/5. I think this is the lowest I've rated a Zahn book species, although it was more of a Zahn short story species. (Could be wrong.) The thing about Zahn, though, is that even his obvious continuity patching is great.

188. Cratniks. Cratniks are apparently a grossout species, because they're described as large insectoids who are "repulsive" in appearance to humanoids, eat live rodents, and get mad if you impolitely refuse to eat the rodents they offer you. And don't think they won't offer you live rodents to eat-they will. (They will excuse you if you are polite and a vegetarian or don't want to eat raw food. Yes, that's a "polite and it's not part of your diet," not "polite or it's not part of your diet.)

They also attack with their jaws in combat.

Rating: 4/5. I find it hilarious that they were apparently designed with the intention of making them freaky as all heck.

189. Crintlians. Crintlians have a hilarious name.

They're also "territorial" (over their furniture? Over their food? Over the remote? Over their lands? Over their planet?) and "known for their technology" (advanced technology? Primitive technology? Cheap imitation technology? Fancy and with all the bells and whistles technology?).

Rating: 1/5. No good. Please avoid vagueness in your descriptions in the future.

190. Critokians. The Critokians, from Critoki (fun to say and to type), are intended to be giant spiders, although the existing illustration is... odd. They're the canonized entry in the "Under 16" category of the "Design an Alien" contest, which I've mentioned in the past.

They can kill prey with their large claws.

They also apparently have a population on Yavin 4, the rather lush moon that the Rebels put their base on in ANH.

Rating: 4/5. I find the statement above ("They can kill prey..."), which is paraphrased rather closely from the article on them, to be hilarious. Also, I tend to rate spider guys high here...

-Signing off.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Lots of Cartoon Insults

I love the fact that there are people with enough time on their hands to do stuff like this. (Note that the video is just shy of eleven minutes.)

There are places where this has a kind of mind-blowing cadence, aren't there?

-Signing off.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Great Moments in DVD Cases Cracker Packaging

I opened a box of Wheat Thins today, and discovered that something was a bit off. And it made me think of the fact that I've had a few posts commenting on poor quality control and other things in DVD packages, and I thought, "Hey, why not blog about a bad cracker bag?"

Yes, it came like that. I was worried that the crackers would be bad, but in fact they were still fresh, and I transferred them to a resealable plastic baggy.

It looks kind of like the sheet of plastic was too short for the machine to seal the proper way; I'm just amazed that the crackers were edible.

And yes, I ate a few handfuls to make sure.

-Signing off.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Batman Does Not Conform (To Batman's Expectations)

I don't know.

Batman apparently likes contradicting Batman.

(And whoa, I didn't expect this one to not match the width of the other two so badly.)

And, of course, the MIND SCREW version.

I'm sorry.

-Signing off.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Game Review: Cube me I am a transformer

Cube me I am a transformer (sic) is a game that's trying hard to be delightful, but falls more than a little short.

Which isn't to say that it isn't a good effort.

The story seems to be a lighthearted jab of sorts at the MacGuffin of the first live-action Transformers movie, the Allspark Cube. The gray stickblob is running with a yellow cube, the green one is chasing him, and then the gray one trips and a chip comes off the cube. The green one picks the chip up.

Then the gray one shoots the green one dead.

The chip from the cube turns the green stickblob into a more rectangular stickblob (and brings him back to life, obviously).

If left alone, your character will jump rope.

Gameplay is basically the ancient Super Mario Brothers paradigm-run, jump, squish, and no hitpoints (although the game's "respawn" system is lazy and your lives are more like hitpoints most of the time)-but by pressing a certain combination of keys, you can turn into a tank, which you can acquire ammunition for.

Sadly, this doesn't make you any tougher-the same things will generally hurt you for the same number of lives.

If you acquire fuel, then you will gain the ability to transform into a helicopter, which can fly.

Sadly, you lose even minimal offensive capabilities (despite what looks like a rocket pod on the side there) and can't move very fast, although that balances it out quite a bit-or it would, if you didn't have such a strict time limit.

I can't get past the second level, which is intended to be the first "real" level.

Why not?

Well, there's a timer.

The ammo and fuel supplies are quite limited.

Fuel lasts for far too short a time.

If you run out of ammo and fuel, the enemies and environments-which include gigantic helicopters that hover over enormous crevasses-are such that they would make even the most hardcore of gamers cry to face them as a functional Mario clone, even if the game had some kind of oneup sampo, which it doesn't. The game is just literally physically impassable if you're not using these skills which have super-limited durations (and since the durations are so short, you won't be using these skills for long enough).

It's a game with quite a bit of potential that I want to like, but I can't. Play it for a couple of minutes, but don't get too furious when it gets to be a pain in the butt.

-Signing off.