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Lamp, broken circa 1988

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  1. Okay. I don't know what part of me is the same if I don't hear DOOM. In small ways, looking at every day objects or words causes me to remember a bunch of DOOM lines. "Brita water filter juice." "Oh, my aching hands, from raking in grands and breaking in mic stands." "Disappear, reappear, disappear again." I've got all of Great Day Today memorized. In larger ways, he kicked doors open in my creativity and expression. I don't tell jokes the same way without DOOM teaching me how to use surprise. I don't see things the same way without him. I think that's why this didn't make me hurt so bad? Because the stuff he's put out has already affected me so deeply and the work that did come out after Born Like This has all felt like blessings from an old master, I guess I was ready. I hear him in my mind all the time anyways. RIP. and thanks.
  2. Hey I just wanted to make two things clear. First, I'm expanding the submission window to the end of this month. Second, no reviews for like a week because I find it hard, bordering on disrespectful, to listen to anything that's not MF DOOM at the moment.
  3. https://www.instagram.com/p/CJefkDalNYo/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading RIP, I'll have to more to say when I'm less in shock
  4. "Fetch The Bolt Cutters" by Fiona Apple "Forever Black" by Cirith Ungol Ok so obviously I know Fiona Apple. On top of that, I really liked Idler Wheel a whole lot when that came out. At the same time, my instincts as a former music critic and my general age meant that when Pitchfork gave the new record a 10, I was going to hold off on listening to it for as long as possible, because I had no interest in engaging with any kind of discussion with the zeitgeist of "OH MY GOD A 10" music listeners. I listened to it two months ago and found it fine but overblown. Now I will listen to it with my full attention.
  5. @Casey EPs are totally in play. As you may expect, I know basically nothing about this band! A google reveals to me that they're from southern California, and they've been around since the 70s. It also invokes "power metal" in the descriptor on wikipedia and if I'm going to be honest it's one of my least favorite kinds of metal (blame my ex's blind guardian/iced earth collection), but the thread isn't "I judge whether or not I want to listen to your album of the year" so here we go!
  6. Hey! Thank y'all for the kind words! Here's an update! The immediate news is that the next time I post in here, it'll be to review a record. As a result of how long this took, I'm gonna play a little fast and loose with how late I'll accept submissions, probably until some point in January. As for my sister, she's one of the people with that Long Haul shit going on. It's not a terrible surprise to any of us, really. If bodies are machines, hers is a lemon. Of course this is how this would go. So, she's not better, but it's stopped getting worse. Also to update my original post: while I think the new Avalanches record is delightful in a brand new way than they've ever been, I still say "What's Tonight To Eternity" is my #1. So there's that.
  7. FYI Cyberpunk seems to be really harsh on epileptics. A Game Informer staffer reported suffering a grand mal seizure while playing, and wrote about the things that provoked her own epilepsy in this article here:
  8. i mean to be fair hudson also steered anthem so who knows maybe this is a good thing
  9. Here’s my Steam Autumn Sale Haul! NAMCO MUSEUM ARCHIVES VOL. 1 [4] Purchased after the release of the Action Button Review of Pac-Man, after I learned it included an NES demake of Pac-Man Championship Edition (the original is not available on PC in any way). Had to. It’s glorious action. Maybe playing it after a 3 hour dissertation on Pac-Man heightened the experience for me, but, still. The rest of the games in it are of middling quality- they’re all NES ports of arcade games, with the exception of one really interesting game called Dragon Spirit: The New Legend. It’s a shootemup that is exactly as fair as “NES shmup” sounds like it’ll be, but it’s not a straight arcade port. Rather, it expands on the original in ways that are super ambitious for the time. It starts with the last bossfight of the arcade cabinet, and depending on how the player does it will change the story and difficulty of the game ahead. A death means Gold Dragon (easy) mode, which has a different setup and a different level order (mainly a shorter one). Success puts you in Blue Dragon (normal) mode. From there it’s a hard shootemup on a remake compilation that includes rewinds and save states, but for an NES game it tries a lot of very ambitious things. So I’m glad I saw that and tried it out. SUPER MEGA BASEBALL 3 [4] A very good baseball game, but I dont know how much I have to actually say about it. I’ve got friends to play it with. I recommend that. The music is bad. If you like baseball but don’t plan on buying any more playstations, This’ll Do. UMURANGI GENERATION [4] One of the best games of the year. I’m starting there because the next part is that I beat it in about 3 hours. It does however have a DLC addon for $10 that I’ll be getting in a week or two for sure. It’s a genuine delight because it’s the kind of game I’ve been hoping to see someday in some form or another. The player character is not a hero, only an observer of Interesting Times. A photographer trying to make ends meet. The gameplay loop is a bit like Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater, where you’re dropped into a level with tasks to accomplish- get two boomboxes in the same shot, find a union jack somewhere and snap a picture of it, things like this. The aesthetic is a bit like Jet Set Radio, of a highly stylized cyberpunk future. They take these two identifiable things, and mix in the boldest realization of Environmental Storytelling I’ve ever seen. Where big developers have turned that into “pick up chunks of radio play during the down periods,” that storytelling is all the storytelling you get in this game. For the people around you, it’s fundamental truths of the world so there’s no reason for exposition. It’s all around you in graffiti, in terse signs, in strewn newspapers and dance parties. The way they use the environment in the game to tell the story is just genius. Simple words on everyday items set my mind on fire drawing connections, and the game demands this in order to complete your tasks, to witness this world pivoting and make a memorable record of it. An absolute delight, and without question one of the best games of the year. Shit, it might be my #1. If you're prone to gloom and doom this won't help. If you have a PC, I can think of no other reason to miss this.
  10. Hey, so, here's an update: on halloween my sister got Covid. It's been fucking terrifying and hard to focus on, uh, anything critical thinking-wise. So I do intend to do this, but there's a little while before I'll be ready to do anything. It seems like things are on the mend but it's hard to tell with this fuckin thing. I'll keep you posted.
  11. DESTINY 2: BEYOND LIGHT [3] I know there's a destiny thread that would benefit from this review more than this thread would, but all my reviews go here, so. I have some misgivings about how Bungie does things these days, and I will not let those go unmentioned. In brief: I hate their dedication to undermining everything I placed value in, mostly tossed away because they give up. I liked Future War Cult, so factions are gone. I liked collecting the guns and armor I acquired over time and storing them in the vault so I could pull out anything I needed for any reason, so now all gear has expiration dates. I liked doing crucible and gambit, so now the matchmaking doesn't sort by skill and there's rampant hacking. It's not going great! All that being said, Destiny 2: Beyond Light: The New Authored Levels And Story is I would say the #3 Destiny expansion so far (behind Taken King and Rise of Iron). A big part of that is personal: Variks is my favorite character and he's been blamed for the death of my least favorite, so being able to save Variks life in the first fifteen minutes and then being able to hang out with my clicky buddy has been great. While Europa is a very eye-strain kind of locale, the actual encounter design in all the new areas is actually pretty fun. The Strike on Europa is my favorite Destiny 2 strike by far. Speaking of Strikes, they remade the last encounter of the cosmodrome strike so it doesn't feel like being bled dry anymore. Bungie the Live Service Developer is pretty bad, but Bungie the Game Developer still has it where it counts. tl;dr: it's good but if you're put out by how they've been doing things, they didn't fix those things YAKUZA: LIKE A DRAGON [4] Ten hours in and I adore this game. It'd be hard to talk about without spoiling things but the short version is this: Ichiban is a fantastic protagonist. I hate using D&D terms to describe this stuff but I'm tired and it's the best analogy I've got right now: where Kiryu was Lawful Neutral veering on Good, Ichiban is Chaotic Good to a degree that makes the game feel like a departure. It would be easy to write another Hyper-competent Good-Hearted Gangster. They tilt the opposite way and put the player in control of this Kismet Bull In a Kismet China Shop, who's thickskulled eagerness pushes him through any god damned thing. The justification for the way he acts is almost pure: "I just do what I think a hero would do." They also go a long way to make societal punching bags the entire core of the story, showing dimensions to sex workers and the homeless that most open world games would trample en route to cheap jokes. and then outside all of that it's a Yakuza game, so it has all the sharp writing and all the absurdity and everything else you've come to expect, just wholly freshened up in a way that major game franchises just aren't anymore. A pure delight. I intend to 100% it, and that includes learning Shogi.
  12. Kakuryu (back injury) and Hakuho (knee surgery recovery) are both out for November.
  13. yeah the GOTY candidates right now seem like Hades, Genshin Impact, and Animal Crossing. Among Us blew up HUGE this year but it came out two years ago, so, there's that. A lot of the big budget games this year have either whiffed or been super divisive. The best big budget game I can think of is Ghost of Tsushima and while it's well made I struggle to look at it and think "Yeah, that's the game of the year". Granted there's like 13 new games out next week but somehow I think it's still going to come down between those three. for the record i do not like genshin impact but talking about games that blew tf up this year, that's one of them
  14. So. I don't really like movies that much. That's why I never post in this subforum at all. But when the pandemic started a lot of my friends were scared and needed something to do, and so to give us something to focus on and talk about that wasn't the horror of the world, we did a mock version of this whole process. We watched movies, submitted ballots, I put some math on it, and we submitted our top 50 under my name. Nine ballots were submitted to our thing, including mine (because I watched enough movies in the process to have opinions). The first place movies on our ballots were Annihilation (Mine), The Lighthouse, Under The Skin, Spiderman Into The Spiderverse, OJ Made In America, Get Out, Your Name, Doctor Strange, and Cemetery of Splendor. Now, the last two didn't make it onto our top 50, but they were first place votes, so, that's why they got honorable mentions. Sorry Octopus. We did make one other adjustment to our list. In our balloting process, our winner was Mad Max Fury Road. But the margin between Mad Max and Sorry To Bother You was six points. So when we submitted the ballot, we agreed to move Sorry To Bother You up to 1st place, because we were worried it wouldn't get enough support to make it to the top half of the ballot without that vote. So, mission accomplished there. Watch Sorry To Bother You. Another fun result of this list comes from that whole thing posted about "the highest ranked movie that didn't make the list." Mine is, allegedly, Bad Times At The El Royale. I HATED THAT MOVIE SO MUCH. IT'S A COSTUME DEPARTMENT THAT WISHED UPON A STAR AND WAS GRANTED LIFE BY A FAIRY GOD-CD COLLECTION. so of course that's the movie tied to my name there. Seeing that made me regret this whole process, but it's not like eight accounts joining with no posts to all contribute to this and then disappearing would have looked better. I wont post the full ballot, but after remembering Jae being unhappy about Thor Ragnarok's high placement and how I'm allegedly the high vote on that, I thought I'd share my top 17 along with the group's top 17, to prove that at least I didn't want it to go down like that either. EDIT: btw @RIPPA could I get a copy of the spreadsheet you used? I'd like to see if I could make a version of this combining y'alls ballots and ours to see if anything interesting happens. No worries if you'd rather not.
  15. Once the ballot dumping ground post is available, I will explain why that happened and more.
  16. An uncommon run of positivity today! Among Us [3] It's not bad but I have trust issues and the thought of trying to deceive someone gave me a legit panic attack. A reminder that my 3 is "i don't regret this", which is true. It's interesting and if there was a version where I could Never Be The Impostor, that'd be a game I would like. Or if that Hide And Seek mode became a full fledged mode that you don't have to yell at a settings menu to make work. Jackbox Party Pack 7 [4] It's the best Jackbox they've ever put out. It's not close. Like two of the games aren't the biggest hits in my circle- Blather Round and The Devils And The Details (which is bad but ambitious)- but Quiplash 3 fixes the bad final phase of Quiplash, and the other two new games are GENIUS. The second best is Champ'd Up, where you have to draw and name the champion of a certain concept (I got the concept of Murder and drew "Literal Dynamite"). Then, that drawing is sent to another player with the name, but not the subject (so they drew "2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee"). Then, everyone else votes on what the winner is (I lost). The idea is amazing, and it's improved by how much better the drawing tool is. But let me go ahead and bust out a seperate rating for the best game in Jackbox history. Talking Points [4] Ted talks are now for cornballs. I think we can all openly admit this. So Jackbox made a Tedtalk game. Step 1: write three prompts. Step 2: pick a prompt. Step 3: give a presentation. The catch is, another player is picking the slides while the presentation is going, so the presenter is getting surprised by the pictures and must incorporate them as they talk. Fortunately they also get to add captions and draw on the slides to make impromptu diagrams. It's... it's perfect. Oh, and after the game, you can make up your own award and give it to whoever for whatever reason. Virtua Fighter 4 Evolution [4] Okay. so. I'm waiting for the Tekken patch because I'm currently too mad at Armor King to play Tekken. So I dig out my copy of VF4 Evo and hey guess what: this is still one of my favorite fighting games ever. The tutorial is ridiculous in its depth. The gameplay is so clean and perfected that I forgot how much I prefer VF to every other fighting game. I live in fear of whatever this new Virtua Fighter sega is making, but I'll always have 4 EVO. I Replayed Return Of The Obra Dinn [4] ...and I'm pretty sure it's the best of the indie puzzle games for one reason: since it's hard to remember the names and faces of 60 people you don't actually know, the amount of time that passes before you've forgotten all the solutions is so short that you can actually play it again sooner than every other game in this genre. For example, I'm probably another decade out on being able to play Fez a second time, because I have to wait until I forget about two specific puzzles. With Obra Dinn it's been like two years? And it was like I didn't play it at all the first time. as for the november game rush, I am the person that has ignored everything else coming out in favor of Yakuza: Like A Dragon, so stay tuned for my review of that.
  17. Out of curiosity and something I'll explain once it's the right time to publish ballots, could I get a copy of the spreadsheet you used to make this?
  19. spiderverse and thor ragnarok haven't showed up yet, so there's that
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