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Great question. If I only had one video I could play it would be this.

Oh crap sorry! Extra Credits! Along with Heathcliff, I dedicate this story to the following people, in no particular order:

Ada Lovelace

Kurt Vonnegut

Bill Gates

Steve Jobs

Grace Hopper

Ray Kurzweil

Gabe Newell

Barack Obama

Michelle Obama

The Fam

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Issue : Games : Raunchy

Video game stories suck. I am aware that its not at all a fair, viable, or defensible statement. But it has been lodged in my feel bone, a relief to get out. A ten pound drop right there. I defend them so much, I had almost forgotten what I know to be true. They are aw-to-tha-ful,  truly a labor to get through.

Pandering, violent, and for the most part devoid of anything resembling soul.  If you believe in story progression, character development, or not being bored to death, then you probably do not like video game stories of today.

It is going to be a long day at work tomorrow. So worth it.

Go crazy, that first paragraph deserves a lot of crazy, but cmon, search your heart. You know it to be true. There are exceptions, yes, and yes, and yes, but even those are few and far between, and well, still not exactly "Willy Shakes," stuff. It has become sort of a given that story will never be star of the show in a video game, it is the new actuality.

At the start I think it was about the limitation of the medium. Only so much disk space to go around, only so many things you could do. Now, I think it's just too many cooks in the kitchen, too many pots on the stove. Taking a good idea and feeling you have to stretch it into sixty hours of gameplay. Toss some doo-dads here and there to keep us busy, and you have the new criterion. I dare you to sit through the full credits of Assassins Creed 3. Had about a trillion producers, a billion designers, and fifty directors of cape movement. I think I popped up in there and I never even worked at Ubisoft.

Kids don't even play tabletops anymore, triple AAA's are comprised of multi player and save points every two steps. And all the kids Jay-walk. I've seen em! Whatever happened to predictability? The milkman, the paperboy, evening TV? It's a rare condition, this day and age, to play any good games on the... fuck it I don't need an excuse to  play these videos. Everything was better when we were young, everything sucks now.

The generation before us didn't know what they were talking about when they said it, but goddammit it's true now. And what the fuck is an Invader Zim! Oh.. ok... wait, this show's pretty awesome. Also, Jerbz.

The Protoculture Mixtape v.130 Issue : People : Pine

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Issue : Games : Revisions

It takes a special kind of crazy to get through the final stretch before a release. Better yet, crunch time requires the ability to modify sanity. The best way I have found to deal with it is to abandon all hope, allow it to envelop you, and simply let the madness in.

People will send you videos, watch them, the videos won’t be funny in the least at first, but over time they will become more and more mentally invasive. Allow this. Delirium will set in, it’s ok, let it massage your back, Shiva will guide you away from the hurt and the code and the mean people that took your precious.

You will leave work, wake up, and feel like you never left. This is good, this is progress. You will remember a task to be completed, and do it although it has already been done, and in the back of your mind you know it has already been done. You will be waiting on a deliverable for four hours, only to find a problem with it the second it arrives, causing you to wait for it until it is returned thirty minutes before you are scheduled clock out. You know you are close to enlightenment when you no longer dread someone coming in and asking for “volunteers.” You just fire up excel and lean back into that groove you dug into your ergonomic chair.

You will get super angry at people crunching chip bags, drinking the last of the coffee, and repeating the same lame ass story to everyone. Over time this will mature into fantasies about walking up and jump kicking them in the neck. You will get calls from family and feel like they are strangers; you will walk around the parking lot on break talking to your significant other, pretending that’s enough. It will either be an argument, a planning session, a thing that holds you together, or something that sends you back to square one. This never gets better.  

And then one day it’s done, the game is released, the bird is away, the dishes are done. And if you are that special kind of crazy, you enjoy every day of that brief stretch of time before the next alpha shows up. Also, Jerbz.

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