30 October 2009

Metal Gear Solid 2

Update: Review of Metal Gear Solid 2.

As I said in my previous post, I was playing Metal Gear Solid 2 again. As it turned out, I was just a day away from beating it. So here's the review. To quote from it:

'Back around the turn of the millennium I was playing almost exclusively RPG's. Then a friend showed me Metal Gear Solid 2 and I thought it looked intriguing enough to try, so I borrowed it. Saying it changed my life would be a little over the top and cliched, but... What Metal Gear Solid 2 proved to me was that action games as well could be used as an efficient medium for storytelling. Also, its unique gameplay, with its perfect balance of realism and cinematic sci-fi action, proved quite addictive. And although I've played plenty of action games since then, I still rank Metal Gear Solid 2 as one of the best. If not the best.'

The so-called 'review' is nothing but praise, of course. But I don't think I'm alone in this world praising MGS2. It deserves it.

28 October 2009

All in a Week's Work

Came down with a cold and, having nothing better to do (or rather no energy for anything better), I realised I hadn't blogged in a while and decided to do something about it. Of course this would be easier if I actually had something to blog about, but life has been pretty boring once again of late.

Well, not boring as such, just stuff that's not really great for blogging, or at too early a stage to get much out of. I participated in a pretty cool LARP (live action role-playing game) last weekend. I don't LARP all that much, maybe a couple times a year lately, and then only in games organised by good friends of mine (whose games tend to be of excellent quality and often of a slightly experimental nature). They usually have to force me to enter, lazy sod that I am, but I'm always happy when they do, as they've turned out to be great experiences.

Perhaps inspired by the events of last weekend, perhaps because of my illness, or simply in a moment of insanity, I've actually started planning a LARP of my own. Yes, I have a long history of running table-top RPG's, but running a LARP is a very different undertaking. Even smallish games generally have at least 10+ players involved, and they all need well written background information to play their parts right... Not to mention the logistics involved.

I also begun re-playing Metal Gear Solid 2 after many years. Hopefully I'll stick to it and get a review out finally (which will be nothing but praise, obviously). This annoying cough and runny nose aren't really inspiring me to play right now, and I know from experience how disastrous even a short break can be for completing undertakings...

14 October 2009

The Geekoscope

OK, so I was just fooling around with asteroids in my horoscope. 'Cause that's what sane people do in their spare time, right? The Swiss Ephemeris backend I use for calculating object positions can pretty much calculate the position of any asteroid, if you download the correct ephemeris file. There are some asteroids with some pretty interesting, and, frankly, zany, names out there. Or up there. Whatever. I stumbled upon asteroids called GNU and Linux, for instance.

So I start thinking, what if I replace all the traditional planets with asteroids associated with really geeky concepts and people? Thus was the geekoscope born.

Finding a group of suitable names proved a challenge. First to come to mind was the dwarf planet Eris, which was originally nicknamed Xena. This was too good to pass by. But for the rest... There are just so many asteroids out there, too many to go through them all. I managed to scrounge up a few names at Wikipedia. I'm sure there are other geeky asteroids out there, but these will suffice for now. Apart from Xena (aka Eris), they are all main asteroid belt objects. Which is a little boring, but that's where the most unusual names are to be found. The ten lucky "planets" are: Arthurdent, Linux, GNU, Stallman, the planet formerly known as Xena, Tolkien, Miyazaki, Mr. Spock, Douglasadams and Torvalds.

To round things up I decided to correlate my ten planets with the ten Sephiroth. Just to make this as geeky as possible, and to make interpretation a little easier. The order I wound up with is the order I listed the planets in above. Some of the correspondences are pretty obvious, some less so, but there is reason and epiphanies beyond each of them. (Such as the realization that GNU and Linux are perfect examples of the God and Goddess principles, respectively.)

Whether this set-up is actually any good for anything is questionable, but it was a fun little exercise all the same. And viewing the resulting chart, the placings and aspects are... not uninteresting.

4 October 2009

She Was Hot

'She was hot'
says Mick to me
from 26 years ago
as the wind howls
and the rain patters
not five feet in front of me
dead silent
(but for gaps)
and Keith says 'I wanna hold you'
but I'm not sure
perhaps that part of me has died
yet there is a part of me
screaming like the wind
pounding like the rain
that longs to be out there
holding.