LOST season 6 countdown

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Superhero party!

An oldie but a goody. And Margot Kidder!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Great Spidey web comic

Check this out. It's a hoot!

Monday, April 20, 2009

AHHH! Marketing!

Science fact, just as Gene Roddenberry intended.

Create Your Own

It says you should submit a pic with no glasses, facial hair, or open smiles. Well fuck them, even if it does look like my mouth opens at the top of my teeth.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Transformers 2 will be long!

Just read on Latino Review that Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen will be...147 minutes long! Weepin Jesus on the Cross, more like Revenge of the Fallen Asleep!! Zingers!

Seriously, that's about two and a half hours. Four minutes longer than the last one, according to Bay. I for one do not get it. Why do these movies have to be so long? Don't get me wrong. I love long movies. Epics. Can't get enough of them. Dense stories that require the time it takes to tell them. Transformers is not one of those stories. I know a lot of people like Transformers, but lets be honest. Its about robots fighting. And then turning into cars and walkmans and then back into robots. And then fighting some more. Its not Gangs of New York or Lord of The Rings for fucks sake!

Damnit, Bay! You're great at visuals. Make a tightly paced action movie!!! They're more fun to watch and you can show more of them per day and make more money! You don't need to waste time on Anthony Anderson playing DDR and talking about donuts.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Why OnLive won't work (even if it does work).

So even if the OnLive system "works", the client sends controller input to the server which in turn sends the video output back to the client, I don't think it's going to take off. The promise of never upgrading my computer's video card is not that much of an incentive, and here is why.

First, the system is subscription based, and they haven't released pricing which means I'll have to make some assumptions. These assumptions could be dead wrong but I think they're all reasonable.

Let's say the service is comparable to Xbox live for 8 bucks a month. (8 per month). I'm basing this on the reviews which mention a subscription charge, but do not mention a set price (source Shacknews)

Now you have to buy or rent a game. These aren't included in the service they cost additional monies. Again they have been nebulous about pricing, but I'll wager that it's going to be a little cheaper on their server than retail so let's say it's 30 bucks for a game that would usually cost 50.
($30 + 8 per month.)

You're also having to pay for Internet. Right now there's a huge uproar about TimeWarner's Cable Internet pricing. Hulu and other streaming services are threatening the traditional cable TV model, and the Cable companies are responding by threatening higher internet prices. Onlive doesn't really say anything about how many Kbps or Mbps their streaming service will need to function properly, but there is a relationship between how long you spend gaming OnLive and how many Gigabytes per month will be steamed. I'm going to go on the higher end of things and add a 40 GB per month data package for 54.90 per month (source : Gamers with Jobs)

($30 per game + 8 per month + 54.90 per month)

They haven't said how much the "inexpensive" microconsole will be, but I'll wager it's around 30-50 dollars, or included with the service agreement (like a cable modem). Let's just say 30 for now.

($30 per game + $30 for microconsole + $8 per month + $54.90 per month)

So already, on month one, I've spent a about $120 bucks on getting everything up and running, and I'll have an additional 63 dollars per month in connection charges. If I do happen to go over 40 GB in a month, that's an extra $2 per gig. So over the a year the price could be (63 x 12 =) $756. Granted, I'm already spending a bunch on Internet anyway, but I don't use anywhere near the amount of bandwidth that this service requires.

AND! If I ever decide to cancel the OnLive Service my console gets bricked and I probably lose access to my games. What is the microconsole worth to me if it doesn't connect to the cloud? It's like the iPhone, as long as you're paying the subscription fee it's awesome, the second you stop, it's a paperweight. And what about all the Games? Much like the iPhone, I doubt there will be any way to use these applications on anything but the OnLive service. To be fair, they haven't said anything about letting people download physical copies of the game... but again, how the heck is Joe User supposed to play Crysis on a netbook or macbook?

Compare this to the PC I bought from Dell this year. 3 Ghz DuoCore, 3 GB Ram, and a big hard drive for 300 dollars, which I upgraded with a 99 dollar GT9800 video card (400 dollars total). Every game I buy on it will run on it, even if I lose my job, or internet connection, just like my Xbox or DS or Wii.

Here's the other thing.... in 12 months, I could pay another 100 bucks to upgrade the video card on the PC and play newer games. So if the cost of this service is to avoid upgrading your PC every year, I don't think it's a valid argument at all.

5 things that they would have to explain before I jumped on board would be.

1) Do I own a license to play the game on OnLive, or a license to play it on any PC? Can I download a backup to a CD or DVD?

2) How many Kbps/Mbps will the streaming video require. How much data throughput can I expect per month, or at least per hour of play.

3) Why am I paying more per month to get less ownership of the media I purchase? What good is it to have a cheaper console if it increases my data costs?

4) How is this service, which is Broadband based, going to entice people who don't plug their consoles into the Internet, or don't have the ability to do so.

5) Wouldn't the data have to move at the speed of light, almost instantaneously for the service to behave like the Xbox? How many milliseconds of latency are in between my xbox controller and video output because the best case scenario for a ping on the internet is 30-100 ms.

There is a definite benefit to this service, and it would be very impressive to have video games behave like on demand television. However, I think at this point, the costs outweigh the benefits in a huge way. That has not stopped me from signing up for the beta, as I'm very interested in how this plays in the real world with variable connetion speeds, and not just on the GDC controlled environment.


Jonpaul is a blogger and podcaster at the media critic site NerdAlertNerdAlert.com . He still has NES Carts from the 80s that work fine without a monthly fee.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Star Wars Shadows of the Empire - Game Developer Magazine

I found a retrospective on the making of Shadows of the Empire for Nintendo 64. It's a reprint of an article from 1997. Check it out. Awesome if you've played the game in the past... or are still playing it today (I'm looking at you Portland Burrito...)


Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Nerd Alert is in the Battlefield Heroes beta.

Can't review the game yet, but I did get into the Battlefield Heroes beta this week, and it's very fun. If you have a PC, sign up for the beta, It runs in the browser!


Friday, April 3, 2009

GAF Recommendations for XNA Games

I found a thread on NeoGaf today which recommends XNA Community games. Check it out to see if you agree with them. Be forewarned that GAF is not always the most "civil" of message boards, but it is nice to see a thread reviewing the community games.

GAF Recommends XNA Community Games

Wolverine Leaked!

Anyone else excited for the new Wolverine movie? Anyone? Yeah, me neither. Really, who needs second rate hippity hoppity stars playing second rate New Mutants villains? Anyone? Anyone?

Moving on.

As you may have heard, a complete workprint of the flick leaked onto the massive series of tubes we call The Net. Plenty of unfinished effects, clipping errors, etc are present. It's been downloaded a jizillion times, mostly by JonPaul. NY Mag has posted a funny ass slide show, with pics from the workprint, pointing out why its best to see it in theater as opposed to your laptop. Check it out here!

NerdAlert Reccomendation : Creative Screenwriting Podcast

The Creative Screenwriting Podcast talks with film and television writers such as David Hayter (Watchmen, X-men) Joel and Ethan Cohen (No Country for Old Men, The Big Lebowski) and the entire writing staff of The Office about the process of writing. The list of interviews is very impressive, and no doubt you'll be able to find an episode about a movie you've seen recently.

I just listened to the Watchmen episode last night and found David Hayter's explanation of the ending pretty reasonable. He also explains why he didn't use the "hacksaw" situation from the prison breakout scene from the comic book (he said it was too reminiscent of a similar situation from The Road Warrior, which I'm not sure is a good enough reason). He didn't quite explain all the Skinemax scenes though. Anyway, it's interesting to hear writers defend their decisions, and explain the writing process.

Inter-web Links :
The Creative Screenwriting Podcast on iTunes

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Funny Stuff

All in all this episode was pretty disappointing, but the cast of TNG going to McDonald's is pure gold. Will Wheaton owns (did i just say that?).

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


Probably an April fool's joke, but who cares? TAUN TAUN SLEEPING BAG!

I now have a reason to have kids.