Category Archives: viewpoint

Ghost in the Profit

There were eight people in the theater when my Dad and I went to see Ghost in the Shell’s live action adaptation. For some reason nearly every showing is in 3D, which doesn’t actually hurt this slow burning production. I know – slow burning action movie, right? GITS has a ponderous, ruminating pace that allows for instances of intense cyborg combat and deep introspection. The Major, aka Makoto Kusanagi isn’t a deep feeling sort; but is troubled by a past she is at odds with.

Mira Killian (…how subtle a name is that for a weaponized prosthetic body user?) on the other hand has falsified memories and serious mistrust of nearly all authority figures. She’s inexperienced, impatient and a perplexing mix of two movies and fifty two episodes of very differently paced story. She’s an action hero with programmable motivations, and… it isn’t long before the fascination of all the cybernetics wears off, and you realize just how watered down everything is.

The 1996 animated feature had deep introspective conversations about the nature of living things, and though it was also light on word count, maybe I’m spoiled by the quality of translations. This movie had dull cipro no prescription writing, dumbed down for the North American target audience, and it was not welcome. Oh yes, the visual effects were spectacular, and deserve some kind of award. Too bad the movie was ten years too late to grab any attention. Culturally we’re tired of Anime’s ‘everything goes’ morality.

It was a good movie; the acting was good, the music was… forgettable, but there was a massive disconnect between the world and the characters that lived in it. Instead of a hero’s rise, which is what this was supposed to be about, it felt like Makoto was settling for something other than obscurity. Were the producers and directors so afraid of offending people that they watered down the transhumanist convolution to a piddling tale of phantom body syndrome? Pretty much, even though Mira is a fairly good match for Makoto, she’s not at her level of expertise, skill and professionalism.

Too much, too late, and more static than is necessary about a movie that wouldn’t even dare take a chance to make a real point about its source material so people could be offended. Here’s looking forward to Guardians of the Galaxy 2!

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Audiosurf 2 – “Width of a Pixel”

Vitals
Developed/Published by: Dylan Fitterer
Platform: Windows, Linux, Mac
Available via: Steam ($16.99) -|- Direct from Publisher ($14.99 USD)
Consider also: Audiosurf ($10 CDN)

We’ve been down this road before, but it was bumpier, a little jittery, and underpowered. Acceleration was poor and the brakes squealed, but it was our first ride. We’d paid for it with our own money and no one could tell us where we could go or what we allowed to listen to. Continue reading

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David, Thank You

My thoughts are small at this time, they certainly seem so in the wake of the loss on such a great scale. I have never known a man able to connect zithromax no prescription with experience so honestly, and I know I never shall again. He was a man of the time, greater than any time lord, more fragile than any child, stronger and broader than any foundation. Continue reading

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Filed under my view, television media, tribute, viewpoint

Location Unknown

Irritably enough I am reminded that the Cloud is just that. Intangible but enforced by marketers as ever necessary for all tasks. Offline access of files, while crucial, remains awkward. Not seamless, not particularly user friendly either. Continue reading

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Filed under marketing, online services, opinion, technology, viewpoint

Remember I said “Total Radio Silence”?

Starwise-bust-watermarked

Fliss Starwise

Okay I admit I never said that, but I did mention that this “wonderful new story”, entitled Sliver of Light, would not receive the spoiler treatment. Having totally turnedcoat on that idea, there is now a ‘novel development blog’ which I will be updating whenever it feels appropriate. Not in such a way as to detract from the core business of writing. The blog is called Cobalted (link opens in new window/tab), and has of this moment features a character synopsis for the main character, Fliss Starwise with more on the way soon.

Go check it out. This isn’t my usual kidnapping, disappearance or abuse intrigue and mystery. The narrative is called limited omniscient, my favorite writing style, granting me access to the thoughts and feelings of every character and it is my most comfortable vantage point. I’ve gotten the impression that many of my followers appreciate Aaran’s personality, or frankly, how real she is. So do I and I’ve mentioned that I was moving away from the darkness in which she lives.

A tale that any one can pick up is just more important to me than trying to be something grittier than myself. So many Canadian games and fiction comes across as harder and more jaded because that is what is expected. It’s not enough to be brilliant, genius and amazing if you’re nice, too. Without getting into the subject at length, I don’t ventolin no prescription believe that’s necessary to demonstrate integrity.

I will say this: We can recognize the battlefield and fight it without letting go of our souls.

You do know that is the core of Aaran Vanadyl’s being, don’t you? Some of you must. It’s easy to become comfortable with stories of abuse and pain, desensitized by the commonality and medium of experience and incident exploited for entertainment. I do not miss the contrast and ironic barriers placed on sexual content verses everything else. Let’s not limit the idea to violence, because that’s escapist. Violence is not the only victim silenced in our public discourses.

Sliver of Light will feature action (read: violence with a purpose) as much as its other elements, which include fantasy, mystery and of course, fiction. Foremost it is an ‘ordinary tale’ of adventure and coping with life as it happens to its cast. Awakening the heart of Amustere Goldfinch, the languishing mind of Diver Seasmoke and meeting the beautiful Pittance with her own goals.

I take a risk in exposing this work so early on, and I know it. However … I believe I am not alone in seeking and elevating what is good. Even with “so few” followers, I am further assured. So, as always, thank you. Cobalted will update with new chapters every Monday, because it should be a day you have something good to read.

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The Swapper – “Illumination by Imitation”

Vitals
Published/Developed by Facepalm Games – Link
Platform(s): XBox 360, Playstation 3/4/Vita and PC (Windows)
Retails via Digital Download
Retails via:
Steam
($14.99 CDN) -|- Direct from Developer $14.99 (CDN) -|-
GOG.com for $14.99 -|- XBox Marketplace for $14.99
Playstation Network for $14.99 – Search Results

I crept more than jumped at the chance to play The Swapper. Moody, dark, lonely games aren’t my usual fare. I prefer stories of hope with dramatic events. You are the unnamed and not so intrepid space suit bound adventurer unraveling an abandoned mining project. Did Theseus dig too deep? What has become of the crew? Continue reading

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Fez – “Forgiving Perception”

Vitals
Published/Developed by Polytron Coporation / Trapdoor
Platform(s): Xbox 360, Playstation 3/4 and Vita, Windows, Linux & Mac
Retails via Digital Download and Your Local Gaming Retailer
Steam
for $10.99 (CDN) -|- GOG.com for $9.99 (USD/CDN)
Playstation Network for $12.99 or Demo (Free) – Search Results

Indie developed titles and can be rewarding in their diversion from the mainstream. Gomez, the protagonist of Fez, is a charmer represented by a few handfuls of pixels and plenty of affection. Its colorful palette and masterful execution invites you to explore and check your stress at the door. Continue reading

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Nitronic Rush – “Core Performance”

Vitals
Published/Developed by Team Nitronic
Platform(s): (PC) Windows
Retails via Digital Download
Developer for Free -|- Consider also Distance for $20.00 (Standard) or $30.00 (Deluxe)

Until I was about sixteen I had a body numbing fear of speed. Even virtual presentations of moving rapidly would arrest my senses and cause me to feel panicky at the lack of control. Over time, I realized, the source was the cure. Nitronic Rush, like driving a real vehicle, confronts such anxiety directly with every assurance of control over your actions. Continue reading

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Audiosurf – “Freedom from Everything”

Vitals
Published/Developed by Dylan Fitterer
Platform: (PC) Windows
Retails via Digital Download
Developer’s Site
for $9.99 (USD) -|- Steam for $10.99 (CDN)
Consider also: Audiosurf 2 (my review) for $16.99 CDN via Steam or Direct for $14.99 USD

This heavily stylized ride puts you on an electronic superhighway generated by any piece of music you feed it. Threading through colored blocks to collect matching sequences while avoiding others contributes to a score which is immediately posted online to integrated leaderboards.  Released on Steam in 2008, Dylan Fitterer’s AudioSurf has crested on the PC to the pleasure of many rhythm game enthusiasts. Continue reading

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Half-Life 2 – “The Broken Train”

Vitals
Published/Developed by Valve
Platform(s): Windows, Linux & Mac
Retails via Digital Download
Steam for $10.99 (CDN)
Consider also Half Life Complete for $43.99
High Definition Version: Half Life 2: Update (Free)

Let’s get this out of the way: The Half-Life series is an unfinished story for which its players are in understandable want of its continuation: Half Life 3, whether episode or whole sequel. Whatever they want to do, we’re eager to see the next scene, but this is a landmark title hailed by players around the world as a pinnacle of story rich first person shooters. Continue reading

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