Friday, April 29, 2011

Determined Game Playing

I've been playing Portal on my Playstation, at the expense of all other activity. The experience fits in very well with two characteristics I have. One, I tend to be far behind other people in discovering things. Two, I then become completely obsessed with them.

After a friend recommended the game to me, I bought it and then worked my way through it in a determined fashion, meanwhile thinking to myself 'This is the best game ever invented.' (I can become over-enthusiastic.)

So, I was some years behind millions of other gamers in playing Portal. But in a way this has turned out well because the second game has just been released. After finishing the first game I didn't have to wait any time for a new one, I just bought Portal 2 and kept on playing.

My obsession can also extend to merchandise. I've been wondering if I could justify buying myself a companion cube. I'd like one. They do look like they'd make good companions. And there are some t-shirts I'd like too. The Valve store only operates in America but they do do international shipping, so I could rush them an order.

On the related subject of video games made into films - which I also saw later than other people - I watched Prince of Persia but I was disappointed. There's something wrong with he film. Well, being based on a video game it's completely stupid, obviously, but that wasn't the real problem. I'm quite prepared to sit and watch a completely stupid film based on a video game, I'm not expecting the plot to be any good.

The problem was that in the original game, you get rid of your human opponents quickly and then move on to fighting the sand monsters, who are much more interesting. But this never happens in the film. I kept waiting for the sand monsters to appear but they never did.

Other films watched some time after their release - Kick Ass. I enjoyed this. It wasn't as violent as I feared. I'm not keen on gore or horror. However, though I thought it was a good film, I enjoyed the parts where the young girl with purple hair was fighting much better than all the other parts. So I kept thinking 'Where is the girl with purple hair? I want her to come back and start fighting again.' If they were to make another film featuring just her, fighting all the time, I'd like that.

And now, I could do my day's writing shift. Or I could get back to Portal 2. Well, there's only one winner in that competition.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

My Bloody Valentine

I'm torn between buying the soundtrack for Lost in Translation and - eh - not buying it. In favour of buying it: I'm still obsessed with the film. Also, I just discovered the the soundtrack contains five songs by Kevin Shields, the main creative force behind My Bloody Valentine. I did know there was a song by My Bloody Valentine in the film, but I didn't realise Kevin Shields did more of the music.

Unfortunately I have a strong feeling that buying a soundtrack is a really bad thing to do. Like it means you're a big fan of film music. Which I'm not. But maybe this only applies to the soundtrack of Evita, or Phantom of the Opera. Hmm. I do have a natural inclination against it for some reason.

I really liked My Bloody Valentine. Their album Loveless is a great favourite. I bought it on cassette in 1991 and I clearly remember wondering if the cassette was warped, so strange was some of the music, till you got used to it. I'm sure other people thought this as well, the first time they heard it.

I remember seeing My Bloody Valentine play, but for some reason my memory fails me a little on this gig. It was in the early 90s, and I'm sure it was at the Forum in North London, but I'm certain My Bloody Valentine weren't headlining. They were the support band but I can't remember which band they were supporting. I saw a lot of bands at the Forum around that time. I can remember The Pixies, Carter USM, Pop Will Eat itself, the Jesus and Mary Chain, and others, but I can't quite remember who My Bloody Valentine played with.

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Here is a 10 second video of me. I already put this on Facebook - and Twitter - but I'm putting it here as well because, as the first video of myself I've ever uploaded anywhere, it's obviously an important social document, and needs to be preserved for society. Possibly NASA should send it into space, so alien civilisations can eventually see it.

Hi, here's my new Runaways t-shirt. Kalix would like this.

video