Malik (7/6/04)

Reports of my demise have been slightly exaggerated. Ok, I know I goofed on Friday with the no posting, no Malik's Bitchings, no news, blah, blah. So, I decided, with it being a three day weekend (well, for me it was two one day weekends...nothing like going in to work on the 4th of July...that's a SUNDAY and a HOLIDAY...blah) to slack off and relax for once. Despite how I take the weekends off from posting, I still put in asylum related work on the weekends, and I felt that after 2 months, I needed a vacation...now if only that logic could apply to my paying job...sigh...vacation... 

So, I had a Malik's Bitchings column ready for Friday, and it's still just as ready today...well, even more ready with how it is actually up and running now. On top of that, I had a news item regarding Microsoft's television venture...well, sorta their venture and it sounds more like a Spike TV venture now. Anyways, click and you'll be enlightened. So, there's still no post for last Friday, but I'm posting today, so that's just as good. Ok, now that I've covered the post, news, and Malik's Bitchings hole that was left unfilled (or unfulfilled) last Friday, I'll move on to making things up to you all. To do that, I have to admit I lied just a minute ago. 

Instead of taking a vacation this last weekend, I spent some quality time writing a review of one of my favorites; Phantasy Star IV. I know, many of you can no longer find a way to play this great classic (unless you use emulators...which I shall refrain from condoning or condemning since I don't want to touch that sticky subject with a 10' pole), but for those of us who are hardcore geeks, there's either eBay (or your online flea market/auction of choice) or there's looking in those old boxes stashed away in your closet...what can I say? I collect a lot of shit, often to Velveeta's disapproval...one geek's mess is another's treasure. So, take a moment and check out the review. As a special treat, I found some old screen shots from the last time I played this game (a year or so ago), and while some things may lose their quality with age, the images of PSIV are a different matter. Anyways, until I get my video capture situation under control, this is one of those rare reviews that will include images of the game. Lucky you. 

Anyways, getting all of this stuff online is a bitch and a half since I have a strong urge to play some more PSIV and try to get it wrapped up before Tales of Symphonia hits the shelves...just 8 more days to go. At least I only have about 5 or so hours of PSIV and about...well, quite a bit of Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time to go. 


Malik (7/7/04)

Well, another day of being over worked and under appreciated.  Also, I feel really sick, so I'm going to leave you with this news item before I fade away for the night.


Malik (7/8/04)

Well, I'm not feeling sick today, so I'll take that as a good sign.  However, I don't have much to discuss today.  The only real news that grabbed my attention today is the fact that Project Gotham Racing 2 will get another expansion pack soon that will include a set of 8 new licensed cars and a new city to race in; that being Long Beach.  Once again, it will probably require about $4.99 to download this content...for this aging game...that didn't have enough cars or tracks to begin with...and thus should be free, if Bizarre Creations were such cheap bastards.  But, you should know my thoughts on this crap already.  I for one don't like the idea of shelling out extra cash for an aging game that didn't give enough to begin with (cars do cost money to license for a video game, but what about the games that sell for the same initial price and offer so much more?...like GT3 did...is that really fair to the consumer to make them pay for the inadequate quantity of cars in the initial offering?  I think...no...I KNOW that it sure as hell isn't).

Anyway, I'm still cracking away at PSIV.  I think I'll easily get through this classic before Tales of Symphonia ships (Tuesday).  I was hoping to play a good deal of Prince of Persia at the same time, and possibly beat it before Tuesday, however it is looking like I'll have to try to fit in my meager amount of PoP playing between my marathon ToS sessions.  Anyway, I hope that I'll get done with PSIV soon, but that may depend on one important fact; old RPGs required a lot of leveling prior to the final boss fights, and I remember that PSIV held true to this old formula.  So, I'll have to hope that I can keep my attention focused on PSIV long enough to deal with this fact...after all, I've beaten PSIV before, so if I fail, at least it wont be a giant loss...although I did like the conclusion of this epic series.

Well, as a concluding thought; do we live in such a isolated world that walking by a man spraying down a sidewalk with chemicals to remove a large (about 3 feet across) blood stain doesn't phase us anymore?  Asnwer: Yes we do...as I saw today...sometimes this city scares me.  


Malik (7/9/04)

Well, it has been a hell of a week for me.  I don't mean due to my day job, as I usually complain about.  Rather my thoughts on the latest round of Congress vs. Geeks.  After I first read about this on msnbc.com, I couldn't stop thinking of how the bias and hatred towards us geeks will never let up as long as a group of biased asses who have no contact with the realities of our sector of the populace continue to tell us how we are aggressive and violent without ever considering who we are, and who their examples are (these headline making asses who shoot up a school, a street, or whatever and blame GTA or Doom or Mortal Kombat...the games, music, movies, or whatever else did not make them kill...their messed up state of mind and a combination of bad upbringing along with neglect from those who are their guardians are to blame).  Anyway, I wrote a Malik's Bitchings column on this serious topic.  I figure I have too many thoughts on this important aspect of our lives to limit it to a casual daily post.

Also, on a less serious note; I checked out the Tales of Symphonia web site yesterday.  I must say that my level of enthusiasm for this game has gone down a bit after visiting the site.  Like I always say, voice acting is almost never good in games, but it can be bad.  So bad, in fact, that it can tarnish a game.  Check out the video section of the ToS website (you need to register for the password to access the Lloyd vs. Kratos video).  After you register, open the Lloyd vs. Kratos video and you will hear the atrocious voices of deep-voiced Yugi from Yu-Gi-Oh! and Robin from Teen Titans have a yelling match.  I pray that Namco is smart enough to give us the option for the original Japanese voices, since this screaming match of cartoon children made my ears hurt.  I mean the usual batch of video game voice actors is a shotty bunch at best, but to go for these voices...damn...what the hell was Namco thinking?  I mean these voices don't even come close to matching the appearance or manners of the characters they are voicing.  Anyway, I hate voice acting in RPGs.  For those dumbasses who say that they don't like to have to read while playing a game...well, I have good news; RPGs are one of my domains, and I don't like your opinions messing up my games, and RPGs require reading.  Put those facts together and it equals this; shut up and play a game that doesn't require reading!  The good news is there are plenty of other genres that don't require reading.

Anyway, I keep typing on the keyboard which equals pushing a lot of buttons quickly, which means I'm being aggressive again (read Malik's Bitchings to understand), so I should stop before my typing leads to a killing spree or something...