I know its laser, the z just sounds and looks cooler.
I've always been a huge fan of odd technology. I've collected vinyl records for a long ass time and I've always been interested in laser discs. Whenever I see a movie I like on laser disc, its been super super cheap! And I thought, I have to keep ahead of everyone. I mean.. everyone has vhs tapes and players. I asked my self how many people do I know own or have owned a laser disc player or even a single laser disc. My best friends father had one (a player) for about three weeks then it mysteriously disappeared. I never watched anything on it nor did I ever even see one of the discs. I've seen pictures of a laser disc and had a general idea of their size. I mean, I have about three hundred records, it must be just like those right?
This is all trivial up till a few weeks ago. While discussing with a few coworkers about the new changes being made to the Star Wars blu ray, I wondered how on earth does one get a good copy of Star Wars without all the recent edits? Well, I already have three copies of the vhs editions.. so while on the eBay, I came across a lot (as in a group or bundle) of laser discs including the black cover editions (see picture!) which is my favorite cover and a copy of the drawn cover a new hope. Also, there was a copy of Star Trek 6. My guess is the seller was just bundling everything that was similar together. So I bid on it and of course, I won all these for about 15 bucks shipped.
A few days ago, I get a large padded envelope that weighed about 12 pounds. I had an idea that this was my discs but I never would have guessed at the heft of it. After ripping open the box, I pull out the heavy movies. I knew at that moment that I had found my next hobby (if you'll call it a hobby.) as I open up my very sleeve and pull out the disc, I laugh out loud for about 5 minutes non stop.
THEY'RE FLIPPING HUGE!
Anyway, thats all! They're awesome and now I need to buy a player so I dont have these huge kick ass discs going to waste. If you want a good laugh and have a few bucks, laser discs are pretty hilarious.
note: for some reason pictures wont upload.. when they do I'll edit them in!
Who remembers the late eighties and all of the nineties? I sure as hell do. Why you might ask? Well, I was born in 1987 and my childhood consists of the sweet sweet time known as the nineties. People finally realized how silly the eighties were and the hippies from the previous two decades had grown up. As I stated earlier, I was a just a wee lad with nothing but a handful of things that would occupy my life. Star Wars was huge in my life. The idea of such a realized universe full of different characters and exciting adventures was new to me. Sure I didn't understand all the subtle story telling and intricate meanings but.. duder.. lightsabers were awesome, Darth Vader and his army of stormtroopers gave me nightmares, and I always wanted a snow speeder. I watched Star Wars all day for a long period of time (I very vividly remember watching Empire while taking a bath.) People who know me, know (or should know) one of my favorite things in the world is a little show called The Simpsons. (I should state my love of the Simpsons lives from season 1-13.) I wont go into details but the Simpsons were my family when I didn't always have a family.
As influential as the Simpsons were on my life, Nintendo was a close second on that list. I can't remember not having a nes and a snes in my house. In my recollection, we went through at least 3 NES. I'm sure the high difficulty and unforgiving nature of many of the games had something to do with a broken nes or nes cartridge. I should note that once I had an NES of my own, It remains in tact to this day. Anyway, we lived in a Nintendo house. A friend of mine owned a SegaMaster system and a Genesis. While they were fine and competent.. it never felt right. I can't say that I had played pong worked my way up to the NES, but something about the NES always felt so good. The sound, the graphics, the way the games felt.. it was all so much better than the master system and our old Atari 2600 (which was great in a different way.. that's a different blog for a different day (maybe.)) As much as I loved the NES, one faithful Christmas, my world changed... as we ripped open gifts, one stands out as something that will forever shape the way we lived our lives....
Holy shit. Words cannot explain the sheer joy and amazment that we had while hooking it up and turning it on for the first time. Whats this?! I dont have to blow on every cartridge for ten minute just to get it to boot?! "3d"?! THE MUSIC?! How did they fit all these moves into the game??? Ok, I could very easily turn a whole twenty page blog about how crazy incredible the SNES was. If you don't know about the SNES.. go buy one and play one. Its incredible. Plain and simple.
But... where Sega failed and failed.. and failed again (except for the Game Gear) a new contender would come in and claim the hearts of video game fans everywhere. Chances are if you're reading this, its no surprise that its the Playstation from Sony. Nintendo would make a play at reclaiming their spot at number one with the Nintendo 64. While it was a close battle, ultimately I think the Playstation won that battle. Anyway, I'm not here to give you kids a lesson on video games, I wanted to set up to recent past and the present of Nintendo.
After the Nintendo 64 and Playstation, came the Playstation 2, the Nintendo Gamecube, and the newest contendor in the form of the Xbox. For me this is where the true change in Nintendo takes place. They went from being number one uncontested, to battling for number one, to being content just being around.
People will argue that the Wii is when Nintendo took a turn for the worse, but given the the lineup software for the Gamecube.. it happened clearly before the Wii. I mean.. the dang thing had a handle. Sure it wasn't the worst system Nintendo put out, but the potential was very high and it delivered very little. The argument could be made that no matter what Nintendo did, they would have lost because of the powerhouse known as the Playstation 2. However, Nintendo relied on their crutch of first party support and an uneasy increase of all ages games.
Then the Wii came out. And they put all their chips on the table with the Wii. And damn that thing got a ton of people excited. Me included!! I remember specifically telling my girlfriend at the time that that is all I wanted and it would be the greatest thing ever. I got it for Christmas and it was the shit. We took it over to my Aunt and Uncles house and had a Bowling tournament that night. It was great. Then I had my fill of wii sports and quickly the software pool dried up. Hoping that something would eventually come out and allow me to wipe the dust off of my Wii.. I was disappointed. It was a combination of the motion control not working up to our hopes.. the software lineup that wasn't there.. and all the sales that made Nintendo think they were doing everything right.. this all made me despise the Wii. Its very easy to point at the Wii and say they took a huge gamble with motion control. And they did and they split the user base in twain. Now before you get too worked up, Nintendo has taken a number of gambles in the past and have FAILED.
Lets see.. Virtual boy, Super Scope, Vitality Sensor, Snes Modem, etc.. the reason that Nintendo got away with these travesties was because no system ever required a radically different way of playing games. (The Virtual Boy doesn't count because you still play games the same, it was just a terrible idea and Nintendo admits that.) Nintendo has created an economy of releasing systems that are underpowered and underwhelming. Once hardware sales slow up, Nintendo will put out a Mario game that sells a few people but deep down we all know it will be the same thing as always.
Its disheartening to see Nintendo being such a staple in my life to having their flagship console being the 'netflix box for the kitchen'. I was so excited speculating what the new Nintendo console would be..
Needless to say, I don't see Nintendo being a part of my everyday life for a while..
Just a few quick notes.. I am/was extremely tired writing this up. I appologies for any randomness or this shit dont make no sense-ness. Also, I was prompted to write this after walking by a copy of Metroid Other M on clearance for 15$ thinking how I dont want to play my wii and how sad that makes me..
So ok, maybe I should preface it a little by saying Costume Quest is my most anticipated game of Q4. Its odd to think that a game I hardly knew about a month ago could skyrocket up to the tippy top versus games that have been in development for years and have been advertised for almost as long.
I don't think I'm alone either. In an age where multimillion (billion?) dollar games are the norm, its refreshing to see a small game with a small studio (and I'm guessing a small budget) make some ground. It goes to prove that you don't have to have the best graphics, sound, etc to make a game that people want to play. I've not played the game, in fact the only real experience I have with the game is the Quick Look on GB and I've seen a few trailers. And Hopefully the game will succeed and it will become an annually updated series. Even if it fails completely, it will always remain a success to me.
Downloadable games have ALWAYS taken a back seat to disc based games. Its a fact. Sure some dlc games have cropped up and had a little success but to me at least.. they've always been second tier at best. The last three months of the year/fourth quarter has always been known for the high profile game releases (nothing new here.) This year is no different. There's a slew of new games that will be coming out that will make us drool and make us ask ourselves what we ever did without that game. I was asked today by a coworker what game lept out at me the most.. and without hesitation I said Costume Quest. Then he said what retail game and I said Assassins Creed (which is not a lie.) That's the first time I've ever mentioned a DLC game as something more than a novelty.
And I'll say right now that I will buy AC, Vanquish, Kirby, and a host of other games. But none of those tickle my fancy like like little humble old costume quest. And I might look at this blog a few months from now and say: "what was I thinking?!" But as of this writing, a 15 dollar games looks so much more fresh and original than a 60$ game I've been following for months. And I think that's more a testament of how far DLC games have come in their short life.