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Congratulations to Andrew Barker! RPGfan Editor of the Year and now Chief News Editor!
340914 Posts in 13932 Topics by 2222 Members
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31  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Movie Trends that NEED to Stop on: December 21, 2010, 11:27:02 AM
I guess (overuse of) 3D technology is a given. I want to say "cheesy dialogue" but in all honesty, that's not a trend: it's just a consistent symptom of the movie industry. I simply feel like more and more films have really generic writing.

Would definitely like to see a halt in movies based on popular Young Adult novels. I mean-- the Twilight books are huge, I understand that. Same goes for Harry Potter and maybe Narnia. But Cirque du Freak, Legend of the Guardian, Percy Jackson... it's just an influx of films that are, at best, mildly intriguing. Some of them didn't even make particularly good books in the first place!


The real unfortunate thing with Percy Jackson is that the movies had the potential to be better than the books.  Percy's constant commentary can come off pretty juvenile (expected considering his age, but makes the book hard to get through).  If they had only spent more time tightening down the script's dialogue and locking in good takes from the actors... Percy Jackson could have toppled Harry Potter in the cinema.  Instead they simply spent more money into improving the special effects.  Which is exactly the common trait among Hollywood I want stamped out.

I wanted to like Avatar.  I really did. But I can't tolerate the acting or the script's dialogue. If they can spend a quarter of a billion making it as pretty  as it is, they could have easily found a way (reserve maybe 10 million of that) for a screen play treatment by someone who knows how to write interesting dialogue.  The same goes for reshoots on many of their scenes.

As much as I'm a defender of the Star Wars prequels, I can't deny that this is precisely what went wrong with them as well.  Overblown special effects budget at the expense of dialogue and acting.  The result is something gorgeous, but only partially human.  Hello uncanny valley, goodbye artistic integrity.
32  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Super RPGFan Game Journal IV - The New Warriors: The Revenge The Movie The Game on: December 17, 2010, 03:37:08 PM
Playing through FFIX (for the first time).  Only an hour in and it gives me warm, bubbly feelings.
33  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Curtis Got Slapped By A White Teacher on: December 17, 2010, 03:30:15 PM
Yeah my mom is a teacher and she isn't allowed to even "grab" kids if they run off.  Spanking or "face-slapping" would probably warrant her cleaning out her desk and being hanged on the spot.

I do wonder if this crazed mom's demands ("the sovereign mother" lol) could be valued at a grand total.  I'm sure it would easily go into the millions.  And if Curtis got horrifically mangled in some accident, the "top notch medical care" could fund building him a cybernetic body like Darth Vader or Inspector Gadget.
34  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Recently Viewed Movies Episode 2: The Vampire Bites Back on: December 17, 2010, 11:28:54 AM
So I was getting some filing done and found myself watching the chick flick "Post Grad."  I typically stay far, far away from these kinda movies and this one only confirmed my sentiments.  The characters are one-dimensional and too proud to warrant any real sympathy.  Imagine the most trite, cliched direction the plot can take.  You say to yourself "Oh no they can't do that, that'd be stupid."  Well they do! 

On the plus side the acting is not distracting.  It does work.  Alexis Bledel is cute.  Michael Keaton plays her dad and I like to imagine he really is Bruce Wayne settled down in a secret, suburban life.  There's an unexpected scene that involves some dark comedy.  I wouldn't have minded it if the rest of the story was cut out simply to make the movie just about this one scene (maybe two to give it background).

2/5 stars  Would not watch again.  Definitely would not recommend to others.
35  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: The 2011 Thread on: December 14, 2010, 09:14:50 AM
My current gaming hardware doesn't include a a PS3, 360, or a PSP (and since I won't have a paying job till at least mid-May) so my 2011 wish list is rather limited.  Perhaps next Christmas will be awesome for me.

So, at least so far:

LoZ: Skyward Sword
Minecraft (in the sense of an official working release once the Beta phase is complete)
Portal 2
Torchlight 2
Pokemon: Black and White

Unconfirmed, TBA, or wild shot in the dark:

Dragon Quest VI (let's get that localization going)
Black Mesa Source
Mother (anything in English please)
36  Media / Brush and Quill / Re: Book Thread Continued on: December 09, 2010, 11:09:19 PM
Finished "Outbound Flight" and its accompanying short story "Mist Encounter."  I was not expecting them to tie together.  I am now a Thrawn fan. :)  Eventually I'll get to Zahn's original trilogy.  But now I can say for sure I'm looking forward to it.
37  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Jumping the gap on: December 07, 2010, 11:45:40 PM
I'm gonna put in a recommendation for Half-Life 2 since, just like the original Mario, it teaches you the basics of the gameplay without utilizing a formal tutorial.  The game doesn't throw you a complex laundry list to remember but provides an environment designed to teach lessons by way of experience.  Consider the beginning subway level: you learn the guards are a threat and easily provoked, you learn the boxes are destructible if force is applied and stackable if arranged, the little buzzing guard droids annoy you and highlight your lack of a weapon (of which you're eager to use when you get one).  You are shown the Combine are a scary threat and the need to liberate your brothers boils up inside of you.  This all initiates an extended chase sequence that lets you sharpen your newfound skills.  Nothing is shoved down the player's throat.  It's like a good heaping pile of mashed potatoes.  Easy and delightful on the way down.

The whole game uses this fluid method and is a big reason why it's so critically acclaimed.  So drop it down to the most forgiving difficulty and set her loose on some Combine!
38  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: favorite christmas movies on: December 06, 2010, 04:38:19 PM
Seems to be the same ones over and over.
Love, Actually is very good, but I don't include it in my Christmas movie list.
Should be two lists.
Movies that are actually about Christmas.
Movies that happen to take place at Christmastime but are not actually about it.

Same thing with the original Die Hard.  Awesome action movie.  Happens to be set on Christmas.  "Survive Style 5 +" might also fit into that category.

I don't mean to be getting one holiday ahead of the thread, but I've heard of one guy going through the original Star Wars and timing the explosion of the Death Star to be right at midnight on January 1.  I may have to make that a tradition for me and my own starting this year.
39  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Recently Viewed Movies Episode 2: The Vampire Bites Back on: December 04, 2010, 12:52:29 AM
Just finished "Falling Down."  Very intense movie.  The whole time I'm asking "Is he going to bring mercy or wrath?"  Some of the dialogue felt a bit forced in its delivery but at least the film looks great.  I also love how I was so wrapped up in the movie, I didn't realize Michael Douglas' character wasn't named until over half way into the movie.  Easy 4/5 stars.

"In Bruges."

A very enjoyable film.


Code:
When Ken jumps off the tower and doesn't die immediately, I was floored.  Never seen that before in a movie. Heh, his body was so soft at that point they could serve it as Chef Boyardee.

It makes sense from that distance you very well might live a few seconds afterward (talking out my butt here). 
40  Media / Brush and Quill / Re: Myconid (AD&D 2nd Edition version) on: December 01, 2010, 01:02:28 AM
Hah!  I also had no clue Goomba were mushrooms.  Sort of like when I was a kid how I always thought the Disney "D" was a backwards "G."


Great stuff there MacGyver.  You have any plans to do any other classic D&D monsters? (I say classic though but I started in 3e).
41  Media / The Soundroom / Re: Progmetal of mine... (links fixed) on: November 30, 2010, 04:30:04 PM
So I listened first to "Conversation" and (hope you don't mind me comparing you) I was immediately brought to Electric Light Orchestra.  You break down the tempo at about 3:00 in a dramatic way and pop back towards the end.  Of the three this was the easiest to follow in terms of the lyrics' story.  And also probably my favorite of the three.

"412-A" was very, very different.  Creepy and dark.  All sorts of industrial sounds and spacey synth that helped me envision a morbid sci-fi future.  I do think both of you are good vocalists, but I liked when your girlfriend sound in the higher register.  When she sang lower, it just didn't sound as rich.  

"Panic" I didn't like too much at all.  The lyrics were really good.  The instrumentals felt all over the place and I was really only interested in the "brighter" sections around the 2 minute mark.  I like how you blend your voices together at that point.

Overall, cool stuff you got going on here.  I don't think I could ever put out an album, so you get major kudos in my book.

Edit:  Went to bed and could not for the life of me get the "Conversation" melody out of my head.  It's quite catchy!
42  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Build the Arcology City: the Sim City 2000 With the Highest Population Challenge on: November 30, 2010, 03:59:47 PM
There's a guy that played Sim City 3000 and managed to max everything he could out.  Cracked featured him in an article:

http://www.cracked.com/article_18792_the-7-most-unintentionally-creepy-places-internet.html

and the corresponding video is very much worth a watch:

http://www.cracked.com/article_18792_the-7-most-unintentionally-creepy-places-internet.html

I don't know what's more frightening: the fact of how much planning and building he put into it or the fact that the "ideal" life expectancy is in a person's 50s.

Edit: I just realized that I posted the same video as Tomara.  Shame on me.
43  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Why are uber-religious people driven to over-sentimentality? on: November 29, 2010, 02:20:37 PM
Quote
Thanks for sharing that Sensei, hopefully we can recover from this umm... tangent.  If not, it's been a great thread.  I'm pleased. :)

Then I think you missed my point with that post. This whole thread has been about the premise that religion is based on sentimentality and emotion. Atheism can be too.

Yeah I may have.  In hindsight, I probably shouldn't have replied if I didn't have anything interesting to add.  But I am glad we're back on track.

I agree people do base theological convictions (whether for God or against) on emotion.  I don't think it should (at least as the "be all end all" factor) because I think it trivializes it.  I think the human heart (not the organ) is often a very flimsy and dangerous thing to trust.  If you wake up to the harsh screams of your crying infant who needs to be held/changed/reassured/whoknowswhat the best course of action might be to not trust your feelings (which probably aren't very positive at the moment) and help the kid out.  In fact, you might say your attachment is more than a feeling.  It's much deeper than that. *cue Boston*

I think there's great evidence if you simply look at the various holy texts and logically consider "Is this the work of a mere man? Or something else?"  Some of you, Thoren, have made it abundantly clear where you stand on the question.  Whether or not they've put any real study into the Bible I don't know, but I'd strongly encourage them to do so if they haven't.  If anything, it's a great, great story.

For me when I see how pitifully low man's station is, how reverential its treatment of something that is not man (God), and how God reaches down into those who hate Him and dies to bring them into an intimate relationship with Himself, it shocks me.  I think it's too weird not to be true.

and in my mid 20's to the present day the role of women in religeon is an absolute deal breaker. i remember one time i was at a cousins wedding and the preist said something to the effect that god created women FOR men and that angered me quite a bit. so to me the bible is mere mythology no more relevant than greek mythology.

When the Bible talks about women being created as "helpers", it uses the same word to describe the Holy Spirit.  Not that women are gods (though sometimes I wonder, hah), but that their mission is one of divine significance.  I'll give you men have certainly taken an unfair advantage over that relationship but I can't see, purely from Scripture, that they have a right to do so.

Also, Eve was created out of Adam's side as she is his equal.  Not out of his front as to be his superior and definitely not out of his back as to be his inferior.

The Catholic theologian Peter Kreeft has a wonderful argument about how Jesus came to tell the world that it needs to be more feminine (in that it needs to passively receive grace) instead of more masculine (in that it would forcibly earn God's favor through good works).  If anything, his idea goes, women have simply "gotten it more right."


The Kraken

Lord Alfred Tennyson

Below the thunders of the upper deep,
Far far beneath in the abysmal sea,
His ancient, dreamless, uninvaded sleep
The Kraken sleepeth: faintest sunlights flee
About his shadowy sides: above him swell
Huge sponges of millennial growth and height;
And far away into the sickly light,
From many a wondrous grot and secret cell
Unnumbered and enormous polypi
Winnow with giant fins the slumbering green.
There hath he lain for ages and will lie
Battering upon huge seaworms in his sleep,
Until the latter fire shall heat the deep;
Then once by men and angels to be seen,
In roaring he shall rise and on the surface die.
44  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Why are uber-religious people driven to over-sentimentality? on: November 29, 2010, 02:53:02 AM
"Earth has only existed 6000 years"

I don't know how old the Earth is. :/ I'm not even sure the Bible is that clear on it.


You realize we have very solid evid-

ah fuck it.

I don't discount most of the evidence.  It very well could be 4.5 billion years old.  Though I won't be surprised if new evidence points to it being .5 billion years older.  Or if it's much younger and created with the appearance of the age.  Thus, I don't know.  Doesn't bother me too much either.
45  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Recently Viewed Movies Episode 2: The Vampire Bites Back on: November 29, 2010, 01:30:51 AM
Falling Down
Joel Shumacher should have made a Batman movie like this

Holy crap!  I just ordered it from Netflix and it's been collecting dust on my nightstand.  Maybe I'll watch it tomorrow.
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