TMNT: Out of the Shadows: PS3 Delay Update: Sort of...

     Today Red Fly Studios posted this image on their Official Facebook page for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows.  It doesn't give us any information what-so-ever, other than the fact they are still paying attention to it.

     There is still no potential release date given.  No new information at all.  Just an image.  But, something is better than nothing, right?  I have a sneaking suspicion they may be trying to port it to PS4 (or Vita) as well for a dual-system Playstation release, but that is merely my own speculation.

     I should note that Red Fly doesn't seem to reply to any communications, as I have not gotten a single response to emails.  Others I've spoken to are in the same situation- no replies.  One might suppose they are being inundated with hate mail though, so I suppose that is to be expected.  I mean visit their Facebook page for Out of the Shadows, it's a long bombardment of uncivil comments, with a few good ones peppering it for good measure.  We'll have to settle for patience and be on their schedule.  Besides, we'd rather have a bug-less, playable game than a constant glitch-fest when we finally get the game.

     They also have released a trailer, a while ago, for Inertia: Escape Velocity.  So I am sure they are pumping most of their work into the new game.  And despite my desire to play TMNT: Out of the Shadows, Inertia looks pretty good.

     For other Ninja Turtles posts I've written [ TMNT ]


Thanksgiving Day Humor: A Silence of the Lambs Meme

     At one point during my very long day at work someone mentioned someone basting a turkey in a very humorous-and-a-bit-strange way- and the individual doing it said it was like lotion for the turkey.  Of course my immediate thought was of Buffalo Bill making a dinner for one of his victims.  So I got home from work and finished the post right before this one, and then made this meme.  The Silence of the Memes.

Thanksgiving Day at Work... For a Good Reason

     I worked today- November 28th, 2013.  Thanksgiving Day.  A very long 13 hour shift.  You might ask yourself why would someone want to work on the highly American Holiday of feasting and gorging ourselves on as much food as we can take before bursting?
     Could it be the wonderful double time pay?  No, unfortunately, I do not get holiday pay.
     Is it the great company of coworkers?  After a 50% call in rate for our department today, that would also be a no, although those that did show up were an awesome bunch.
     Could it be because my own friends and family are horrible?  No, I would much rather be with them enjoying myself and devouring a frankly disturbing amount of food and drink.

     For readers that don't know what I do, I work in a hospital, a very large, continuously busy one at that.  More specifically, I work in direct patient care.  Many people don't think about that on holidays- of the people that ridicule me for working on holidays, never have they asked why.  Everyone assumes it must be some horrible consumerist plot tying me to a register to sell away trinkets to the masses.

     But alas, that is not it.  I work in a facility that tends to people.  Every year during the major holidays we get a decent trickle of lonely people that just want company.  We get plenty of genuine patients.  And lastly, we get a fair share of post-binge-drinking-with-the-family-and-friends patients that come in due to a brilliant idea to carve the turkey while juggling chainsaws and arguing politics with that very strange relative we all know.  And every year this last bunch provides me with a wealth of humorous stories I can't share due to HIPAA laws.
     While many have places to go to spend time reminiscing about the joys they have experienced with friends or family, not everyone is blessed with that opportunity.  We tend to forget that there are people out there suffering or lacking.  Hospitals NEVER close because illnesses and accidents don't take holidays.  I am giving these patients a sympathetic ear, a few laughs, and if possible- a little bit of hope for the future.  I am giving them a small glimmer of something they may not get at home- a tiny medicinal dose of friendly company.  A bit of distraction to keep their minds off the situation they are in.

     Just got a halo and need help balancing to get to a bathroom?  I'm there.  Have to be lifted out of bed after an emergent appendectomy?  Right here.  Broken toe from getting frustrated at so-and-so and drop kicking a frozen turkey?  Guess who's going to ask how far it went?  That's right, this guy.  While I'm at work, it is my priority to make people feel better about the fact that sometimes life is unfair and shitty.  Today I suggested that a patient call someone to smuggle them in some cranberry contraband like an old prison break movie.  After questioning their RN, they did indeed do exactly that and received a nice visit loaded with goodies.
     Because of that fact, I don't mind being a disposable health care worker.  I don't mind being overworked and under appreciated on the job.  I don't mind sacrificing my own holiday celebration because I can give it up to help someone else achieve something like one.  A small measure of normalcy to be sure, but that can mean a lot to someone stuck in a hospital.

     I think what I'm trying to get at is- Thanksgiving and Christmas shouldn't be limited to a single day of the year- but rather something we share every day.  Isn't that what these 2 days are about?  Being kind and helping those in need.  Being thankful, caring, and generous.  Being open to, and aware of, the thought that there will always be someone in need of something as simple as a kind word and any one of us can provide it- on any day and in any circumstance.


Borderlands 2: The Horrible Hunger of the Ravenous Wattle Gobbler: A Tastepocalypse Review


     In the newest Borderlands 2 DLC Headhunter pack we get a very small taste of Thanksgiving flavored Holiday delight.  I have to stress the very small part, this is considerably smaller than even TK Baha's Bloody Harvest was.
     Mister Torgue is hosting a show for the Torgue Corporation that is very much inspired by the Hunger Games.  There are Tributes from a few locales from around Pandora that appear as sort of paired mini-bosses on the way to fight the (Actually) Invincible Ravenous Wattle Gobbler.  I know I've joked about having an actually invincible boss before but never thought it would happen, and then came the Wattle Gobbler.  Well Played Gearbox.

     The story here is actually much better than Bloody Harvest.  As soon as Torgue arrived with the Campaign of Carnage, he was easily one of the most well-rounded characters in the series in addition to his superb characterization.  Anyways- Torgue goes against the Torgue Corp. and helps the Vault Hunters beat the rigged game show because A) He likes them and they are friends and B) He wants to eat the Gobbler.
     The Vault Hunter's get the inside scoop from Torgue and you are sent in to poison the Gobbler and beat all the other contestants on the show.  While this doesn't sound like much there is a mass narrative segment at the end in a mission with...

     Grandma Flexington

     The elder Lady Flexington is something I thought was an odd, but ingenious addition to the game.  She provides a very long-winded quest involving a ridiculous meandering story. (I think her voice sounded way to young, I think they should've gotten a real old lady to do a Torgue impersonation for the role)
     This is the toughest raid boss yet.  Sitting through an old women's tale.  Throughout the telling however, we get to know Torgue and his past quite well.  What happened to his parents, how he became fascinated/obsessed with explosions, and the fact he had a full mustache before he was 10 years of old.
     It gives you a view of his character, and Grandma's, something like sympathy and respect for the struggles and embarrassment he went through.  And the reason he does things for- pure awesomeness.  No really, he does things because they are awesome.
     I'm sure this is a divisive quest among many long time fans as it requires players to do something they really haven't had to do yet- listen to someone at length without action.  There are those that really dig in for story, and those that just want to shoot things.  Since I fall in with the former, I enjoyed the story.  Scouring it for clues and hints for future Borderlands related stuff.  She does mention "the end of the universe..."

     Wattle Gobbler, the Vulnerable

     The content here is unbelievably minimal and makes me question why they didn't plunder more areas for Tributes simply for filler.  Think of all the places we haven't seen since the first Borderlands and it's DLC- maybe a couple Tribute's from the Zombie Island of Dr. Ned, or a pair of Clap-Trapped leftovers from the Claptrap's Robolution.  They could've thrown in teaser Tributes from Pandoran locations we've never heard of but they could save for future use.  Or even Hyperion bots sent as Tribute proxies!

     And so far I haven't been able to find any real Easter Eggs like the Clark the Combustible Cryptkeeper from Bloody Harvest.  Although there is a large black hole in a wall out by the stabber jabber nests that seems completely unused.
     Although the cooks names are great references- Chef Gouda Ramsay and Chef Bork Bork (A Muppets reference!) to name a couple.  There is also the oven with a batch of cooked up crystal slag, pointing towards the show Breaking Bad.

     Overall, I highly appreciate the fact Gearbox is still putting out small DLC for the fans to stave off our hunger for a third Borderlands installment, but I really wish they were a bit longer.  We are paying a fifth of the DLC cost for much less than a fifth of the gameplay.  When the presumably Christmas-themed How Marcus Saved Mercenary Day arrives next month, I will gladly purchase it to spend a little more time in my favorite game world.

     Also- why aren't there any Torgue Vending machines in this Headhunter Pack?


Tiny Death Star Shenanigans!

     Despite Disney relegating LucasArts to licensing, some games are arriving that are still worth your time.  This first game since the shutdown is through NimbleBit, plastering a Star Wars covering over their Tiny Tower and calling it Tiny Death Star.

Now witness the buying power of this fully STAFFED and OPERATIONAL shopping station! 

     Because it is Star Wars related I gave this a go the first day it came out and enjoyed it quite a bit.  Creating a multistory mall and apartment complex inside the Dark Side of the Force's Ultimate weapon wasn't something that really appealed to my inner gamer, but I had to play this because the little characters were so adorable.  Finding dream jobs for workers or creating a new secret level for Stormtroopers to impose their cute interrogation techniques on Rebel Scum, it's all worth a playing when you have a bit of free time.  The Star Wars theme elevator music adds a layer of hilarity I never thought I'd hear.  Then I promptly forgot about the game.

     Now to the good stuff.  After being true to the Dark Side, I used my Sith Lord powers to neglect the entire Tiny Death Star for almost 3 weeks.  When I returned I wasn't berated by Emperor Palpatine, merely questioned as to where I was.  And somehow, while most the shops had closed down, I managed to rake in quite a lot of credits, as well as 10 Imperial Bux.  I honestly thought I would return to a bunch of  itty bitty dead bodies in a moon-sized can.
     Clearly I was out Lording my Sith over those silly Ewoks down on Endor.  Alas, much to my surprise, a small infestation of them had moved into my Duct Repair level.  Seriously?!?  How did they get here before me?  They have ZERO technology!  There also happen to be a bunch of Jawas taking over Toydarian Toys.  Not cool Jawas, not cool.

Oh, I'm afraid the deflector SALES will be quite operational when your friends arrive.

     Management simulators like Tiny Death Star really aren't my thing, but as a free to play mobile game, this is pretty close to getting me hooked- as close as anything like it has gotten at least.  The game provides little in the way of action, but seeing a lil' Lando hanging out with an Indiana Jones look-a-like in the Holochess Hall makes me smile.  It also makes me wonder what other great games may be on the horizon of the Force...

     One last thing of note- I have yet to see any microscopically tiny Midichlorians, and we can all be thankful for that.

If you SHRINK me down, I shall become more ADORABLE than you can imagine!

Adventure Time Explore the Dungeon Because I DON'T KNOW! Review Because I Ugghh.

     When it comes to the Cartoon Network series Adventure Time, it's a hard thing to say something might be lacking.  As for WayForward's newest game based on that wonderful show- Adventure Time Explore the Dungeon Because I DON'T KNOW! well...

Why is this game so bad?!?

     Explore the Dungeon takes place in a very generic, randomized floor design dungeon setting.  Which, considering the cast of characters and the content they have at their disposal, sounds like a recipe for gaming gold, but it is far, FAR from that.

     It really shouldn't be hard to make a simple top-down dungeon-crawler, but somehow this got flubbed big time.  Of all the playable characters (Jake, Finn, Marcelin, and Cinnamon Bun to start, with others unlocking as you play), they all play the same.  There isn't anything to truly differentiate each character.  It all comes down to going in and mashing the attack button.  Occasionally getting a special move or sub-weapon to assist.  Nothing original or imaginative to play with.
     Ok, I take that back, many of the sub-weapons had me laughing, but got to be as boring as the gameplay very swiftly.  The Newt Poot cannon that shoots fart clouds, a Cone O' Nine Flavors to tastily flay enemies, and a gun that launches kittens are all entertaining, but work quite poorly.  Only later in the game, when you find the very powerful sub-weapons is it really feasible to use.  Marceline, however, desperately needs a melee sub-weapon because her main attack is so weak.

     You may have heard that there are 100 floors!  Yeah, that sounds amazing!  Except for the fact they are primarily empty.  The simple addition of a run button could've at least helped a little.  And the enemies you do happen to come across are all the same.  Over and over, ad nauseam.  What you don't really hear about is that they are broken into 20 floor themes- not too bad, but you can't leave without a great cost- if you hit a checkpoint (every 5th level) and you exit, if you don't spend all of your money you lose it.
     On top of that, if you happen to die before a checkpoint you lose half your gold and are automatically returned to the hub, thus forcing you to spend what little gold you have left.  And to make that just a bit more like a punch in the nuts, you have to replay all the levels you missed before the checkpoint again.  After losing your sub-weapon, half your gold, and any boost tokens you may have been using to pad your stats- replaying these levels becomes very irritating.
     I would also like to mention that because the leveling up costs so much, it becomes a grand slog to repeat the boring levels again to gain levels.
     Oh, yeah, I forgot, there is no exploring.  It's drop in, walk to a stairwell which will be located at the farthest point from you on the map, repeat.

     Here's a bit of good to say- I do really like the music and voice work.  They are top notch and hearing some of the things they say are quite hilarious.  Lumpy Space Princess and her confidence about her appearance will cause a chuckle, and hearing Marceline's nonchalance always makes me smile.  But these shouldn't be the best part of a game based on a show that continually tops itself with humor and imagination.
     This was a chance for game makers to do the show great justice and make an RPG to appeal to both the shows fans and to gamers.  If WayForward would've focused on making something like all the dungeon-crawlers of old they may have done something great.  This is sadly, a bland half-assed attempt at a game.

     As a fan of the land of Ooo, I must say this is a massive step backwards.  The most difficult boss of this game is Monotonous Tedium.  Unfortunately, this boss arrives quickly and persists in annoying the player right up until the end.

     And I'm still a little peeved that Steam players get to play as Peppermint Butler for free.  The game is already way overpriced, and paying more for a character I actually like in a terrible game just isn't worth it.


Where's Lindelof: Fake News About Damon Lindelof?

     It's only been a month since Mr. Lindelof broke up with the Twitterverse and I'm kind of curious as to where he's been.  To solve the mystery of the missing Damon- and what the meaning behind his last tweet is- I went searching in a Where's Waldo fashion...

“After much thought and deliberation, I’ve decided t...”

Come find me.
     You've decided to what?!?

     OK, maybe we'll never know, or maybe he's just working on Tomorrowland or The Leftovers.  Maybe he doesn't even know.  Maybe he's got some secret projects or new comics like Ultimate Hulk vs. Wolverine, which I actually enjoyed.  If he really hunkers down I hope he can produce some really remarkable things, not some senseless perpetual-mystery circle.

     Anyway- he does have plenty of ideas left so I'm sure he'll return with something worthwhile, including the answer to his last tweet.


Borderlands 2: Headhunter pack 2: The Horrible Hunger of the Ravenous Wattle Gobbler

     Gearbox and 2K gave us this morning a nice post about the new Borderlands 2 Headhunter pack 2: The Horrible Hunger of the Ravenous Wattle Gobbler.

     Here's their description:
     Seasonal festivities are one of the major inspirations behind the Headhunter series. In the second Headhunter add-on, Mr. Torgue hosts a hunger-themed competition to hunt down a giant turkey, the Wattle Gobbler, and selects sacrificial recruits from all of the districts of Pandora to participate!
     There’s also a strong theme of family, embodied by characters like Mr. Torgue’s super buff grandmother, Grandma Flexington, which you meet in this downloadable content for the very first time. Grandma Flexington reminds us that we should be nice to Grandma during the holidays, even if she rambles on for way too long. (This may be a tiny spoiler, but the actress that did voice over for Grandma Flexington performed that part so much better than we ever imagined and we can’t wait for players to finally meet her.)

     I am super excited for this.  The first pack (TK Baha's Bloody Harvest) was a bit short and a little lacking in content, but for $3, I really didn't mind.  It was a few hours of extra Borderlands fun.
     There will of course be a dessert of heads and skins rewards, but only if we finish our main course dinner of slaying the Wattle Gobbler!

     We can expect the this Hunger Games-esque pack to be released on Nov. 26th for $2.99.

     We also will be soon finding out more about the 3rd Headhunter pack- How Marcus Saved Mercenary Day sometime in December.

Source [ 2K Blog ]


Bioshock Infinite: A Possible Songbird Explanation

     Spoilers ahead.

     Throughout Bioshock Infinite Booker and Elizabeth are chased by the entity called Songbird.  Evoking the Big Daddy and Little Sister relationship of the earlier Bioshock's, it made me wonder- who is in the Songbird?

     One clue is a Voxophone recording of Jeremiah Fink left near some design blueprints:
A Child Needs a Protector
These holes have shown me yet another wonder, though I’ve yet to see the application for it. They illuminate a merger of machine and man that is somehow the lesser, yet the greater, of both parties. The process seems to be irreversible. Perhaps, though, Comstock will have some need of this kind of thing to keep watch in that tower he is building.
     The implication being that Fink may have seen Big Daddies and based the Songbird on it.  Furthermore, if he did use another being in it, why was it so protective of Elizabeth?  (I also like the Big Daddy and Little Sister in the background of the scene of Songbird's death)  It would be worth mentioning that during the death scene blood comes out of the Songbird- see pic above.

     Here's what I'm thinking- mind you this is kind of far fetched- it is based on complete guesswork.
     Considering the path Elizabeth is heading in through the Burial at Sea DLC, becoming a violent protector of alternate versions of herself, maybe with her vengeful path she either puts a Booker or Comstock in the Songbird...
     ...what if she puts a version of herself in it as a punishment?  Cage-ing the bird.  She does wear the bird and cage necklace- that I believe at one point during Infinite is the opposite of what you chose earlier, then returns shortly after.  I could be mistaken on that though.  (I would also note that it could be a creator's oversight- but NONE of the Elizabeths at the baptism are wearing the necklace.)

     Granted the Elizabeth in the suit theory is highly implausible, but a Booker or Comstock from another time or universe would be highly possible.  Anyways, this is just me thinking about the Bioshock Infinite game, and possible connections to the DLC.
     Then again, would Fink have let on if he had help from another Elizabeth?  He was essentially pilfering tech from other universes... then again, with Comstock's resources he may have found another interesting person to fill the role for Fink.
     I don't know- there are a few paradoxical issues I have with the end of Infinite anyway, so I'll post more stuff about this later.

The Last Guardian: Ueda feels "Terribly Sorry" for the Delays

     Fumito Ueda, the brilliant mind behind Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, had an interesting small interview with Edge magazine.  In it there is a pertinent question about the continually delayed Last Guardian.
Given your impatience, how taxing have the past eight years been on you as a creator? 
Putting aside the short-term output, more than anything I feel terribly sorry that for various reasons I have kept my audience waiting for such a long time.
     And a slightly longer, more informative answer:
How do you keep your team motivated over a production cycle of five years or more? 
Maintaining motivation is all about producing something great. A hobby or alcohol might help to refresh you temporarily, but they won’t motivate creativity. Also, the original staff members on Ico and SOTC are just as fussy over details as I am. I always want to create quickly, and I always want to increase the rate of production. In the case of The Last Guardian, my creative work was mostly finished a long time ago, but the details of when, where and how it will be completed are beyond my control.

     So these answers sound like Sony is holding something back, but for what secretive reasons we don't know.  I also read somewhere that Sony's worldwide president Shuhei Yoshida has mentioned the game was being "re-engineered" and that he has played it.  No mention, however, of what platform (PS3, PS4, or maybe even the Vita???) the game would be released on.
     Considering the fact that Sony is still waiting for the "right time" to "reintroduce" the game, I wonder what has become of the original game we were shown footage of 5 years ago- and how it has grown and changed during the span between.  Surely the magic of his creation won't be lost.

     And this last thing has me very curious indeed:
What are you working on now? 
The Last Guardian and the rest is secret.
     Could he have some more small work already started for the wonder filled universe he created?  Could there be a multiplayer/co-op PS4 to Vita remote play content added to The Last Guardian?

Source [ Edge ]


Playstation Vita: How to Fix the PS Vita's Sales Problem

     I see Sony has a 3 part plan for the problems the PS Vita is suffering...
          ...and I see that they are horribly misunderstanding it's difficulties.
     It might be of note to mention that I've made no efforts to hide how much I love the Vita in previous blog posts, it knocks the 3DS out of the park as a gaming system.  Honestly, it's a tremendous piece of hardware, and the lagging sales could be fixed in a fairly simple manner.

     The issues with the Vita are quite easy to spot-

  1. COST!  The cost of the system, and the proprietary memory cards, is absurd.  
  2. Games.  Games.  GAMES!  More games.  More exclusivity and original games.
  3. Stop pushing the remote play.  We bought a portable system to play it PORTABLY, not to be tethered to a console (I'm looking at you Wii U).  It's a feature, not a selling point.

     Sony is making a bit of headway though, with the announcement of a more cost effective Vita (large price drop) and a slew of indie games.  But if they really want to compete with Nintendo in the handheld systems department- give us things we want.  

     What do we want?

     We want more games.  Everyone that already owns a Vita will tell you the same exact thing- MORE GAMES.  I bought a Vita quite a while back and my only complaint is the game selection.  Sure I've got about a dozen games I really like on it, but where are all the heavy hitters?  The kind that rival Nintendo with the Zelda series.  More games like the exclusive Assassin's Creed: Liberation, Uncharted: Golden Abyss, and Gravity Rush.  All three of these were amazing games, and players would like more of them.
     We want exclusive games.  Good freakin' lord- can you imagine what a new game that takes place in the world of The Last of Us could do on this system?  A NEW version of Dark Souls, a NEW Borderlands or a NEW Bioshock would cement this portable gaming system as THE system to have. 
     Note that I specifically say "NEW" versions- we don't want more ports of console titles we already own.  We want portable experiences that the other companies and consoles cannot provide.  Less ports and more originals.  Real Triple-A titles that we can play on the go.  Sony, you have an immense potential with the Vita, so why aren't you using it? 

     Hell, new and compact versions of an Elder Scrolls or Fallout could go a long way to boost sales.  Killzone: Mercenary was a great start to the portable first person experience, but we want to see what the Vita is truly capable of.  

     Maybe, if Sony wants to sell some Vitas really, really badly- they could just make The Last Guardian a Vita exclusive.

     How many would get a Vita if it showed off better exclusive games with tons of creative ingenuity?  Make more games for kids and females.  Seriously, just the females portion of the gaming market has to be like a bajillion extra buyers.  Focus on creating games that appeal to their tastes.   And as for the kids- if they could release a Pokemon or Monster Hunter type game?  Instant profits.

     As much as it pains me to say this, there needs to be more grinding JRPGs for the Vita.  Many gamers are clamoring for it- why not listen to the consumers Sony?

     And while we're at it how about a screen capture?  


CRIVENS!!! The Wee Free Men! Terry and Rhianna Pratchet at the Movies

Cover by Arispk
My First Thoughts...

     I'm not sure how I missed this, but someone emailed me a link about The Wee Free Men being adapted into a movie.  My first thoughts were, "Oh Gawd!  Someone's going to ruin another beloved book series!"
     My second thoughts were, "Why would I think that, some of the great Terry Pratchett's adaptations weren't that bad, and this could be good..."
     Then my third thoughts cut in with, "Whoa, whoa, WHOA!!!  The reason I think that I thought that was because the adaptations of the great Terry Pratchett's books that were bad scare people away from the aforementioned books, and that is a bad thing to think."
     And then there were my fourth thoughts, since they were the thoughts you think about the way you think about the way you think about the way you think, they led me into a grand confusion and then I walked right into a door.

     For those of you unfamiliar with the book, here's the blurb:
A nightmarish danger threatens from the other side of reality . . . 
Armed with only a frying pan and her common sense, young witch-to-be Tiffany Aching must defend her home against the monsters of Fairyland. Luckily she has some very unusual help: the local Nac Mac Feegle—aka the Wee Free Men—a clan of fierce, sheep-stealing, sword-wielding, six-inch-high blue men. 
Together they must face headless horsemen, ferocious grimhounds, terrifying dreams come true, and ultimately the sinister Queen of the Elves herself. . . 

Second Thoughts...

     Really, this could actually turn out to be a wonderful thing.  Each new Pratchett adaption gets better.  I really enjoyed Going Postal, and my only real complaint was that the Golems looked preposterous.
     After reading the article from The Mary Sue link, I see it is Terry Pratchett's daughter Rhianna Pratchett doing the honors of transforming the book into something filmable.  Being quite the video gamer gave me a bit of experience with some of her work such as Mirror's Edge, Heavenly Sword, and most recently the newest Tomb Raider game.  All of them are well done and don't give me a sour worried taste in my mouth.
     And besides, she has direct access to the author's thoughts and opinions whenever she wants.

     This also reminds me, what ever happened to The Watch?  The adaptation of the City Watch stories with good old Commander Sam Vimes heading up the team of oddball police officers.  I heard it was going to be along the lines of CSI: Ankh-Morpork- with all the Pratchett brand of humor they could throw in.

Third Thoughts...

     Well, here is where my worries do begin- if they make it, will it be live action or will it take the 3D animation route like How to Train Your Dragon?  Because the army of 6 inch hilarity called the Nac Mac Feegles, which can only be described as simple minded, highly aggressive, semi-drunken Gaelic Smurfs, need to be done in a way that lasts and would be memorable for both adults and kids.
     As for the cast- there is only one character I can think of that I'm reasonably certain everyone else also pictures in their heads as well- Granny Weatherwax.  Who else could play the role as perfectly as Maggie Smith?  She practically lives the role in real life anyways.

Fourth Thoughts...

     I truly hope this gets done well.  The Discworld series, and the Tiffany Aching stories, deserve the best treatment possible.  If done right this could be on par with the long Harry Potter series.  So if The Wee Free Men does well, would we expect more of young miss Aching's witchy ways with A Hat Full of Sky, Wintersmith, and I Shall Wear Midnight?  I can only hope so.

     I mean WE can only...


               (The door wins again)

Source [ The Mary Sue ]

Marvel & Netflix: Where's a She-Hulk Show?

     This is something I've wondered about for years.  Ever since I read the Dan Slott and Juan Bobillo She-Hulk: Single Green Female I've wondered why she hasn't been given a show or film.  Really, I'm not joking here.  This series is a good read for many reasons, including having a multifaceted female lead.
     With Marvel's recent announcement with Netflix- it makes me curious as to why this hasn't been done.  Daredevil, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and Jessica Jones are all good characters, but they need a lady lead of She-Hulk caliber potential- strong in body and mind.  She could be an amazing role model.

Bobillo's unique art style could even be animated!

     What She-Hulk could ultimately offer to either the big or small screen is two fold- she has all the epic heroic deeds of being a super hero, but she would also offer the procedural courtroom drama of all the NCIS and CSI type shows airing continuously on pretty much ever channel possible.
     In addition to the seriousness, there would be plenty of humor and light-heartedness.  I laughed for days about Spider-man taking J. Jonah Jameson to court for libel, and one reason he mentions for Jameson's actions uses the mask he wears to great effect.

     Due to excessive partying and recklessness She-Hulk demolishes both her home at the Avengers mansion and her future in Law.  After being booted from the Avengers and getting fired from her law firm, She-Hulk gets picked up by meta-human law firm Goodman, Lieber, Kurtzberg & Holliway.  The catch here is she isn't being hired to be muscle of any sort- she isn't getting a job as She-Hulk- but rather, she is being hired as her plain human alter ego Jennifer Walters, the professional lawyer.

     I can't recommend this as an "essential" read, but I would recommend this as something that should be read.  It definitely deserves to be adapted for film/TV- even if it's just as a cartoon.  There is something very special in this volume that should be shown to a wider audience.  This story is the kind of thing that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. could've been doing already.  A balance between both the human and superhuman aspects in a way that is entertaining and relatable.
     The story here doesn't have the fate of the world at stake- just a handful of lives.  Villains that don't know what to do with themselves once they've gained power and need legal help for their previous actions, and Jennifer Walters herself dealing with the insecurities having to be a mundane lawyer instead of the fun and famous She-Hulk- and the crossing paths of both hero and villain realizing that sometimes being normal is better than being super.


Bioshock Infinite: Burial at Sea: Part 1 Review

This is really Elizabeth's story.

Infinite Spoilers Ahead

     Burial at Sea Part 1 sees our already known, but slightly older Elizabeth (confirmed to be the one from Infinite) paying a visit to a new version of Booker DeWitt in what could very well be one of an infinite number of slightly varied versions of Rapture- which would explain things like the difference in how the Plasmids are used.

Rapture Revisited

     My initial complaint about this game is that we don't really get to explore the pre-ruin Rapture.  Anyway- our view of pre-fall Rapture is severely limited, and it feels very small and underpopulated.  Wasn't this supposed to be a flourishing undersea paradise?  Where the hell is everyone?
     There are small conversational bits you can overhear about people questioning Andrew Ryan's choices.  Familiar name drops, seeing the already disturbed artist Sander Cohen beginning to crack, and the start of the populace becoming suspicious of Ryan only adds the slightest touch of depth that Rapture once held.  It just isn't enough to be as immersive as any of the main games themselves.  This particular piece of Rapture, be it the original or a slightly different one, just feels empty.

     That leads me to my next thought- why would Ryan sink Fontaine's building when it was so devoid of people.  There are so few splicers there that it makes me question why bother?  Just send in one or two people to mop up a few mad splicers.
     Or- if he could see what was coming, why wouldn't Mr. Ryan gather up these human foreshadows into one place- a large group of them and then cut them off?  We get to witness only a couple dozen of the first to crack- why haven't some of the ones displaying signs get herded into the mix?

     As for the combat- it is sadly disappointing.  The rarity of finding ammo and salts is still around.  There are now respawning enemies,which should be a nice addition, but there just aren't enough to go around.  And while I thoroughly enjoy using the new Plasmid Old Man Winter and then microwaving splicers into exploding with the new weapon-Radar Range- it's disappointing because there's barely anyone to use them on.  There isn't enough salt or enemies to effectively lay traps and have a good time with the fighting.
     Then there's the Air-Grabber the renamed Skyhook from Infinite.  Because this section of Rapture we are confined to is so sparse it feels shoehorned in.  They could've given us a giant building to explore with a massive Skyhook system linking all the floors together, but no, we are given a couple of tiny enclosed areas where the rails are almost useless.  Such as the last battle- good luck using the rails there- out of the 5 times I hopped on to get away, I was snagged off immediately 4 of them.  Even with a Motorized Patriot as a distracting piece.

     Burial at Sea's biggest problem is brevity.  I spent a lot of time roaming and looking at all the posters and listening to conversations, and I still beat it in under 3 hours.  We were led to believe we would get a grand look at Rapture before the fall, and the scope we got was so small it's not really worth it.

Is Elizabeth Becoming a "Comstock?"

     The ending of Burial at Sea is extremely telegraphed.  If you paid attention during the game for Infinite, the clues are all placed well in advance in a heavy handed manner for this DLC.  What starts as a promising noir detective story ends with a predictable and sloppy twist.  This might as well have been called- The Infinite Failings of Booker DeWitt.
     With Bioshock Infinite's multiverse ending opening the door into endless possibility, why did we get another version of Booker as the bad guy?  When will we see him as the hero- in a role of redemption instead of a target of vengeance.

     Maybe we can find out why Elizabeth spouts off about morality, leads Booker on a chase to find Sally, then helps kill him.  Why not just walk in and kill him, we've seen that tears can be used to kill, so why the run around?  Sure she wanted him to remember his actions, but why not just make him remember by telling him?  For Booker it would've been a giant slap in the face to remember all this right at the end- trying to save one little girl and then recalling his abhorrent actions.  The purposeful misleading of the voice actor- being Booker instead of Comstock- doesn't help either.  Comstock wanted to leave his mistakes behind and start a new life, then he gets hunted down by an alternate version of the daughter he accidentally killed while attempting to not let her get taken by an alternate version of himself.  That's some messed up stuff on it's own.

     Perhaps the next part of Burial at Sea will give us a more in depth perspective of her actions.  She pretty much planned a murder in her quest to eliminate the Comstocks of the multiverse.  I'm also curious as to where all the evil versions of Elizabeth are.  This DLC definitely gave her a distinctly darker tone.  We are given the barest of glimpses into what Elizabeth may become- and that's it.  Maybe we can see a Booker/Comstock hunting an Elizabeth that is committing acts of wrongful violence.  What if she is killing the Booker's that start on the path to Comstock, but haven't had their chance to repent and fix the mistakes made and thus alter their futures.
     When will we get a perspective that paints her as a villain she is on the way to becoming?  Will she see that becoming a force for vengeance might be a bad thing?  Maybe a different Booker and Elizabeth pair might show up together and change her path.  Or how about the Luteces?  We know they are up to strange business, as usual.
     Elizabeth has unlocked near infinite power, and needs to learn the cost of wielding it.

     All in all, I can't wholly say Burial at Sea Part 1 provides nothing of true substance to the Bioshock namesake- but I feel a bit ripped off after paying for the Season Pass, as this content was as minimal as could be.  Now mind you, I don't "not like it," it's just I felt there should be more content to this installment.  One can only hope that Burial at Sea Part 2 will fill in the emptiness and justify the lack here, give us a compelling reason to complete Elizabeth's story.  If Part 2's story is good enough I wouldn't mind it being as short as this one.


Naughty Dog: An Uncharted Teaser Trailer for Playstation 4

     Naughty Dog, in addition to releasing a teaser trailer for The Last of Us: Left Behind, has given us another nice treat- a very short teaser for a new Uncharted game exclusively for PS4.  It doesn't show much, just a map with a voice over by Todd Stashwick, who is confirmed to be playing a character in the game.


     Although, this is a nice little hint- the map shows St. Mary's Island off the coast of Madagascar with a big X and a nice quote to go with it.  It sounds as if some of Nathan Drake's previous exploits are going to have disastrous consequences.

"This day you shall be with me in paradise."

Naughty Dog: The Last of Us DLC: Left Behind Teaser Trailer

     Naughty Dog has finally given us a small teaser as to what the single player campaign add on to The Last of Us will be.  The DLC titled "Left Behind" will give players a chance to experience something Ellie mentioned to Joel in the main game- her back story about losing her best friend Riley.

     While we already know how it ends (from the main game), this choice for the DLC intrigues me as to how it'll occur.  I've heard it said plenty of times that it's the journey, not the destination- and Naughty Dog in particular has been a company that focused on the experience of a character's journey, and will no doubt nail this down well.
     It is interesting that they didn't just tell someone else's story, happening in another place.  Something like a group of people, or a singular person, crossing paths with another character we've seen- but on their own journey.  Such as another survivor coming into contact with the cannibals, or someone that might have been through a place that Joel and Ellie had been, but just missed them.

Source [ Playstation Blog ]

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: More Like Agents of S.H.!.T.

Agent Coulson's not even cleared for his own files.
     I've waited for 7 full episodes for this show to get good.  Unfortunately it is still lacking.  I am in no way impressed so far.
     Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. needs to stop boasting that it's a Joss Whedon show when it really isn't.  Sure, the show has the Whedon name attached, but none of the writing and characters to back it up.  Just because a show has his name pasted all over it doesn't mean it magically becomes imbued with his talent.

Agents of S.H.!.T.

     It suffers from poor characterization, terrible chemistry, and downright awful dialogue.  Seriously, the show should be called Agents of S.H.!.T. because it's that bad.  Where's our interesting dynamics and thoughtful story lines.  Never would I thought I'd hear myself utter these words, but Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. makes that abysmal series called Arrow look like a masterpiece.

     In all honesty, I expected more of this show.  We were led to believe this would be a show about the Agents, who should be the best of the best, not cardboard cut outs cliches.  The show is too campy, with a clumsy handle of the team Coulson put together.  I mean really, Skye doesn't belong there, she barely brings anything to the table, and Agent Ward is just as useless.  Fitz and Simmons can be allowed as they are behind the scenes characters with mass amounts of useful knowledge, but Skye and Ward shouldn't be.  They are too generic.  Should I even mention the robotic caricature May?

     You know the show is going terribly when Agent Fitz's sandwich is more interesting than Skye's annoying focus on her past.  She doesn't have clearance and complains repeatedly- prompting me to want her to be gone.  Outside of Skye caring about her past, no one else should- I wouldn't even care if she was the mysterious child of Coulson and May.  It doesn't matter, because she doesn't matter- her "hacking" skills aren't magic, and they certainly aren't doing much in the show, so why is she still there?  The show seems to want us to care about her but since she is an overconfident, underwhelming performer that has already screwed up- why would we want to give her a chance?

Coulson Reconditioned

     The only properly developed character feels neutered.  Agent Coulson had a great set up through the films and now on the show he seems off.  He isn't the quick witted, Men in Black secretive bad ass he was in the films.  Granted it could be because he's a clone or something- mostly because of the super overt, anvil dropping hints to him not knowing what happened.  Agent Hill saying he can never know what really happened, the Pavlovian Tahiti response he continually gives, the gun muscle memory is missing when toying with one, and the eye-spy asking what "they did to him" because he seems so different- all highly overt clues to Coulson not being himself.
     Maybe he's a memory implanted Life Model Decoy that had scars added.  Maybe there's a whole warehouse full of them somewhere all waiting to be wakened and released.  That would explain how he seemed to be everywhere when needed in the films.  Tahiti, that "magical place," could easily be a compound capable of doing strange things.  Maybe he's a Skrull, a brainwashed shapeshifter, or even Project Vision brought to us courtesy of Hank Pym's Ultron.  There are so many options.  Hell- he could be the personified bridge to the future Avengers 2: Age of Ultron.
     Agent Coulson was NOT resurrected from the dead to lug around a bunch of D list agents, he was brought back for something bigger than babysitting a bunch of lame nobodies on a plane.  The show needs to get to it quickly, he worked with the damn Avengers, gods and heroes among men, so he should be doing something worthwhile.

"Trust the System"

     The most recent episode they repeatedly say "trust the system," and don't do it, so why should we as viewers?  Really.  I want to understand why the show insists we trust.
     These agents are supposed to be the best of the best, so why is it they are all a bunch of bumbling idiots?  Nick Fury is in charge of a super secret organization that everyone apparently knows about, but manages to inflict a massive amount of bureaucratic bungling of typical government agencies.

     There has been something missing from this show- we need to stray from the failing formulaic stories and the drug out artificial mysteries- make us want to watch, give us great reasons to watch, characters we want to root for.  I'm sorry to ramble, but this show has immense potential- a vast plethora of Marvel Comics history to draw from- why aren't they tapping it?
     I would even enjoy a surveillance episode devoted to simply them tracking evidence of a vigilante like the Punisher.  Or a semi super human serial killer like Sylar from Heroes.

Make it worth our time

     I think the show's tone needs to be fixed.  All this minor issue/monster of the week is boring.  Where is all the intrigue and real threats that S.H.I.E.L.D. should be handling.  We viewers expect more from this show.  Nothing Avengers level, but with shows like Game of ThronesBreaking Bad, and even Heroes- we know good shows.  Agents hasn't lived up to the hype and it still has a chance to change.  Get better writers (how about actual comic book writers?), more interesting problems, and make this show worth our time, and maybe they can gain back some of the lost viewers that have been abandoning it.  Just make it worth our time.


LEGO Marvel Super Heroes Review

The Good:

     Lego Marvel Super Heroes shows both how amazingly far Traveler's Tales has come in transforming famous worlds into Lego lands since Lego Star Wars in 2005, and how badly the problems still linger.

     Traveler's Tales have successfully recreated New York City in this game- it feels positively full and alive.  There's always a ton of Lego people and vehicles roaming.  An endless supply of denizens almost strategically in your path while going about their tiny brick business.  This city is absolutely loaded with people and vehicles, much more than the oddly empty Middle Earth map from Lego Lord of the Rings.
     This is where the game outshines all it's predecessors- in the capacity for free roaming New York City and the makers of Marvel Ultimate Alliance should take note.  They've moved towards an open world sandbox, but aren't quite there yet.  In truth the core gameplay could be reduced greatly, because many have grown tired of the old Lego game formula of having to replay every level at least twice to unlock the characters and items hidden within- which is really the only reason anyone still does it.

The Not-So-Good:

     It is fairly irritating that TT boasts that the game has "Over 100 Playable Characters," but makes you play all the story levels with a mere dozen or so.  I know they are tying it to the Avengers and other movie franchises which heavily influence the game.  Tons of X-men and Fantastic Four heroes and villains, with a few miscellaneous oddities like Howard the Duck and Squirrel Girl.  They even got Clark Gregg and Stan Lee to do voice acting, and Nolan North reprises his video game Deadpool voice.  Which leads me to another annoyance- Deadpool is a huge fan favorite, and he is one of the LAST obtainable playable characters you can get.
     Why can't we be given a large selection right off the bat?  By the time I've unlocked all the characters I like my interest has waned considerably.  In this case, not quite as much, but ONLY because of the free roaming.  Players want more initial character availability, not having to spend so many hours unlocking our favorites that we've grown bored with the game.

Things I really enjoyed:
1)  Venom's transformation both to and from Ultimate Venom.
2)  Pots hitting randomly Magneto in the head.
3)  Dormammu shoots flaming skulls that roll around after hitting things.
3)  Wolverine's healing from an adamantium skeleton to full bodied mutant.
4)  Black Bolt's "voice."
5)  Create-a-character.  The combinations of powers are mix-and-match.

Now the REALLY bad...

     One thing that TT apparently lacks is knowing how to map buttons.  Seriously, the bumpers and triggers are largely ignored in favor of having many tasks assigned to the 4 face buttons.  Having the "build," "action," and "context switch" buttons all being the O button is one of the most laughable mistakes possible.The triangle button covers both character swapping and character transformations- when the bumpers control swapping, why not leave the triangle button solely for transformations?!?  There are 4 barely used buttons- divide them up!  Seriously, this should have been addressed years ago, and not a persistant issue after so many games in the franchise.  I understand this is a game geared towards children, but if I have difficulty with these controls, a child will be that much more frustrated by them.

     AND THE FLIGHT CONTROLS!!!  Whoever decided to NOT use the 2 joysticks method that EVERY OTHER GAME EVER has used needs to be fired.  Instead we get the extremely counter-intuitive joystick and 2 buttons.  On PS3 it's X and O-  X makes you go upwards and will rocket you forward if double tapped, and O has the reverse effect of descending and if double tapped dropping you completely out of flight into a fall.  This is a horrendous choice for a control scheme.  It is awkward.  Not only that it makes the flight challenges ridiculously difficult.
     The remote control cars controls are even more absurd, but I'll let players discover how they are handled, because the game doesn't ever tell you- which is hilarious because it'll give you hints 1,000 times for something it tells you how to do in the first 5 minutes of the game, but won't bother to mention a completely different way to drive a vehicle, unlike anything else in the game.  All the repetitive hints get to be such an annoyance because they cover the lower 3rd of the screen.  And they happen every couple of minutes or so.  We need an option to shut them off.  (Possibly add the constant shift away mini cut-scenes that fill the levels, or at least make them faster)

     The biggest complaint I have- WHERE'S THE MULTIPLAYER CO-OP?!?  There is no reason we shouldn't have 4 player online co-op.  Especially during the free roam city time.  It's been long enough and needs to be added to the Lego games.

     In almost a decade and 20-some odd games, these are issues that should've been remedied years ago.  They've made a tremendous effort with Lego Marvel Super Heroes, most notably in the open world portion, but haven't quite made it good enough to compete with games like Skyrim or Far Cry 3.  The newer open world format is where the future Lego games should focus, complete with full multiplayer options, and for the love of whatever Lego deities might be out there- break up the button mapping.  Traveler's Tales has a chance to make something truly astounding with their next Lego installment- they just need to listen.


My Cell Phone WAS Haunted- By the Ghost of Tamagotchi Past

     I've always had issues around electronic devices, but lately my phone has been downright awful.  Calls going directly to voicemail, messages not alerting,random programs force closing, and tons of other general annoyances.  Well, I went poking around in my wonderful Android system to see what might be going on...

     ...and I find this:

     The ghost of a long dead Tamagotchi was having a grand ole time.  Yep, that's right, a tiny poltergeist party right there inside my Galaxy S.  They even had phantom fireworks!
     It could've at least sent me an invite.

     Not that I would've received it.


Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy: My Favorite Background Piece

     With a flood of commercials now appearing for Anchorman 2, I figure I should post something about the first movie.  I'll keep this one super short.
     Ever since seeing it in the theater, my favorite background item is during Ron Burgundy's "Glass case of emotion" scene.  Brian has on his desk a simple unsolved 2 X 2 Rubik's Cube sitting on his desk.  Such a wonderful tell of character sitting right there for everyone to see.

     I may even write up a post on the absurd Wake Up, Ron Burgundy: The Lost Movie- a film comprised solely of footage that was not used in the main film.  It is pretty amazing that they had that much extra material and subplots that a whole extra movie could be made.  Although I can see why most of the footage was scrapped- there's only one really good scene in it- Brick is eating a "falafel hot dog with cinnamon and bacon" he got out of the "food basket at the end of the line."  But since they don't exist, Ron tells him it's just a used coffee filter with cigarette butts, and Brian tells him the food basket is just a garbage can.  Brick simply laughs and continues eating it.
     All right, so this lasted longer than I thought it would.


Thor: The Dark World: Poll - Who's Better: Thor or Loki?

     This is the battle everyone has been waiting to see...  Loki versus some small children, and it does not disappoint.  Thanks to Comedy Central and the ever-amazing Tom Hiddleston for making this awesome promo commercial.  It is nice to see odd ads made- that it isn't all explosions and one-liners.

Fox Wants a 3rd Wolverine Movie?!? More Mangold and Jackman to Come...

     After raking in over $400 worldwide, The Wolverine has inspired Twentieth Century Fox to negotiate terms for a 3rd installment with writer/director James Mangold.

     While he did do a better job than the team that made X-Men Origins: Wolverine, it really wasn't that difficult to do as they set the bar low enough to be considered on the floor.  Honestly, this is not too surprising- if people keep paying the studios will keep making them.  Are we ready for another less than amazing story of someone bemoaning his origin and immortality?

     Fox, why can't you get a Wolverine done by a decent writer and director?  Where's the team that can compete with Nolan's on The Dark Knight level?  I've written enough on the subject of handling this character so poorly plenty of times.  About teen angsty Logan mopery, bemoaning his past, and the need for real grit in the series.  If Marvel wants to create a series worthy of a man who is the best hunter/killer they need to really hunker down and focus.  We do NOT need another one-note-Wolverine film.  He needs to grow as a character, and that still hasn't happened in the X-Men film franchise.  Fans are sick of watching him cry into his beer.

     Mangold clearly did not read the Frank Miller derived source material, because the film lacks any of the noirish Japanese underworld feel.  It is also missing any of the crime drama that could've been tapped.  Seriously, I think Mangold only read the back cover's blurb then used the pages for toilet paper.  That being said, I am quite worried as to what he'll beloved story will be wrecked next.

***Potential Comic SPOILERS Ahead***

     They could even make a story featuring a Daken like child he never knew he had.  The kid would be an absolute monster- enjoying all the killing and abusing his powers.  Following Wolverine around and wreaking havoc on anyone he comes in contact with.  In the end Wolverine would be forced to kill him.  If it was handled correctly the impact of the story could be immense.  A small intimate scale of personal, character driven plot.  Subtle, yet powerful.  Uncanny X-Force 34 did it very well with Daken imagining the ways life could've been different with a father around as he is dying at his father's hands.
     [ I Googled "Wolverine drowns Daken" for these pages ]

     We'd even get to see that famous adamantium rage with all the feral savagery an R-rating could muster.  A bloody mess of a battle between two near-immortals.  We'd need an R-rating so they could stop pulling punches and give us a Wolverine we deserve- the ultimate Marvel badass that is "The best there is..."

     There are so many options.  Do something original.  Think of a period piece set in the cold war era about Wolverine in old Soviet Russia hunting down Omega Red.  Maybe even a short survivor-horror tale about Logan wandering the Canadian wilderness tracking down the Wendigo.  A black ops Weapon X film where they are sent in to assassinate someone a little too powerful.

     I've said it plenty of times, Marvel- it's time to take the kiddie gloves off and make films for fans older than 12.  Take the risks and make a movie worth watching.  Make a movie worth talking about.

Source [ Deadline ]


Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Nickelodeon) The Video Game Review

     The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have had quite a long and full history of products attached to their franchise.  That's almost 25 years since the 1989 release of TMNT on the Nintendo's worth of accumulated video games knowledge to learn from.  With such a vast wealth of material to pillage, how did Magic Pockets (Activision) make a game so disappointing?  I'm not kidding, I'd still rather play the time-worn but still plenty entertaining Turtles in Time or The Hyperstone Heist, both hold the magic of true beat-em-up gaming that this new one lacks.

     Sure, they stick with the formula that works, a side scrolling beat-em-up, but they missing anything new or interesting.  That being said this particular game also forgets what made the old Turtle's games great- that ooze fueled brawler magic through a variety of levels and settings.  Everything is repetitious here.  The limited combat animations, the turtle's saying the same 3 lines over and over, and only a few enemies that arrive in hordes.  Even the levels are extremely similar to each other.

     The combat is terrible, in part due to awful AI, as fellow turtles will pretty much just stand around, which becomes a problem because the hit boxes will prevent you from getting around them and allow enemies to hit you.  Once you've been struck once like that it usually continues with a few cheap hits that can't be evaded or blocked because there isn't an option for either.
     That isn't too much of an issue since most of the enemies are just as stupid as computer controlled brother turtles.  Most just bumble around and swing at you halfheartedly.  Occasionally one will flash red and be momentarily invincible with an unblockable attack.  Not much there.
     I want to also note that the turtles really aren't differentiated- they all feel the same.  Mikey should be fast but weak, Don slow but has long reach, etc.  They are interchangeable and that doesn't work at all in a beat-em-up.  Even the upgrade system for them is boring.  It offers making attacks stronger, giving you a more durable shell, combo length upgrades, and adds rechargeable power attacks that don't really differ from character to character.

     What went wrong here?  The game can barely appeal to even fans of the show, as this is supposed to bridge the seasons 1 and 2 together but has scant story involved.  The only interesting thing that kept me going were the small amount of easy to find collectibles in scattered throughout the levels.  By the end I unlocked Time Attack and Survival modes as well as the Arcade mini game from the Turtle's sewer home.  Once I unlocked them I was quickly disappointed again, as only the Arcade offered any amount of fun, and even that lasted only about 5 minutes.

     The unreasonable amount of monotony may have been broken up a bit by being able to play co-op, but the 3DS version I played did not have the option.  The 3D is actually one of the things in the game I did like.  It was well handled and looks great.  Another thing I noted was Michelangelo yells "Cowabunga" but then hastily changes it to "Booyakasha!"  A nice touch for us old fans.

     I don't really know why the game companies continue to put out games that seem unfinished.  This Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles game should've been have the length and a quarter of the price at most.  Like they strove to make the most basic game possible and didn't even meet that goal.  This feels like a game a 5 year old might play.  Emphasis on might.  That may have been their target demographic, but even then, the game feels half finished.

     As a life long TMNT die-hard fan I long for the day when a company makes a game worthy of their "Heroes in a Half Shell" legacy.  We need a 3rd person, 4-player co-op, open world game like a combination of Skyrim and Lego Marvel Super Heroes with a multitude of filler missions and guys to beat up.  And TONS of selectable or unlockable characters to play as.  That is the type of game that needs to be made.

     Until that happens here are some other Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle related sites to spurn a slew of nostalgia fueled memories:

[ The TMNT Collectionary ]

[ The TMNT Block on Yardsellr ]

...and other TMNT blog posts I've written [ Here ]


Deadpool Film Only Waiting on Studio Greenlight

     All the right elements are ready and waiting for the studios to greenlight a proper R-rated Deadpool film we fans are clamoring for- we know Director Tim Miller is listed, Ryan Reynolds has said many times he is on board, and there has been an oft mention "great script" by the writing duo of Paul Wernick and Rhett Rheese (Zombieland).

     Here is the statement by Mr. Miller:
“We will never give up! Deadpool is still alive and we’re just waiting for the studio to embrace what an amazingly f**cking awesome film this would be.”
“Ryan is ready, I am ready, the fans are more than ready. We just need that elusive green light”
     The problem I think that is happening is the studios are hesitant of putting out an R-rated film.  How can you do proper justice to a highly effective killer that uses humor as well as guns and swords?  The same complaints I've addressed many other times about the Marvel movies- they NEED to stop pulling punches and start making films for adults as well as kids.  They need that extra level of freedom to create an experience worthy of the characters.
     Films about anti-heroes that kill require an extra edge, the violence can be a useful tool.  The Wolverine suffered from it, the Ghost Rider movies were abominable, and Deadpool's last venture into film (X-Men: Origins) was hampered by the rating system, among other things...
     *cough cough*   ...terrible script...   *cough*

     If they want a good following they have to up their game and take risks.  If this movie gets made and does well, it could open up an entire new avenue of film opportunities for Marvel.  An actual horror version of Ghost Rider, a dark noir mob underworld Punisher, and a maybe even a Wolverine film that actually shows him being the best there is at what he does, and that is certainly not brooding over some long forgotten past and crying like his mutant power is being an emo teenager.

     Deadpool is a character that knows he's a comic character in a movie.  He's a crazy person and if they handle it properly, like the recent Deadpool: The Video Game (which I believed they handled quite well), they could open whole new worlds of movie chances.  He's crass, violent, and immature- but has access to the mental faculties of a ridiculous dreamlike reality that he envisions the world as.  Marvel needs to tap this, Deadpool's unique 4th wall breaking perspective of the himself, the universe, and everything else in between.
     Think of it- they could throw in cheap cartoon segments, or daydream states made of claymation and it would work because the character would accept it.  With Deapool, almost anything goes.  He is an opportunity to allow a method of ludicrous storytelling and entertainment few other characters could even come close to offering.

     It's about damn time to start looking towards the future Marvel.  Start taking risks.


Misfits: First 2 Episodes of the Final (5th) Season

     I realized I haven't actually written anything on the Misfits series yet, and well, now's the perfect time.  With the first 2 episodes of season 5 now available and only 6 left- I better get going.

Alex seems to be missing a shadow...

     I remembered seeing Hulu ads for this show years back and thought it looked very interesting, but... I completely forgot about it.  Then about a year ago I saw another ad for it and gave it a try and have been hooked.
     Misfits seems to be the UK version of Heroes, and it is handled fairly well.  The whole first season was damn good, not perfect by any means, but had immense potential and made the most of it.  A great variety of characters and powers coming in each episode and the struggles of these community service kids dealing with life and it's now extra-ordinary problems coming their way.  Such as their probation worker's mortality rates- that is a huge, and hilarious, issue.

     I don't think the series has done quite as well after season 2, once Nathan left- it hasn't hit the high notes nearly as well, but it has kept good momentum no less.  The Nathan-esque replacement, Rudy, is damn entertaining and one hell of an actor to top it off.
     Since season 2 all of the original cast has left and now we are with an entirely new crew and a somehow- -still-alive-after-8-episodes probation worker.

     Here's desrciption of the new season from E4 on season 5:
The new series marks the first anniversary of the storm and a support group forms on the estate for those people who find having a super power isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Like… the ability to knit visions of the future, or to shag unwanted powers out of other people (you read that right) or to transform into a turtle. And as Dark Rudy likes to talk-slash-moan, it should come as no surprise that he is the first of our gang to start attending. And it’s here that he sees a very different future facing the team - one which could change things forever. 
Strap on those ankle tags, because this is what you’ve been waiting for. Our guys are going to have to up their game if they’re going to tackle some real life A-grade super-powered vigilantes.

     I'll probably be watching the 2 episodes tonight, and I'm really curious to see if they bring Nathan back for this last season.  And see how long the current probation officer will last.

     In other Misfits news/thoughts- there have been rumors of the show getting a US remake.  Please, let the powers that be NOT LET THAT HAPPEN!!!  How frequently do remade shows here work?  Other than The Office, I can't think of a single UK TV property handled better here.  American TV tends to ruin shows like Being Human, and until they learn how to properly handle these shows, they need to be cut off.