Friday, February 28, 2003

well, Apex seems to be working now. I had to erase it completely from the Xbox harddrive and restart, but I was only 3 races in, so it wasn't a big deal. I just hope it doesn't decide to bugger up again later in the game when it IS a big deal.

Thursday, February 27, 2003

Hmm... After researching a bit more, it turns out that that .hack//sign box set is just the first DVD in the set, along with a bunch of stuff to go along with it.

I wouldn't mind getting all that junk AND the complete series for $90, but since it's just the first DVD in the set it really means I'll be spending at LEAST $40-50 of the $90 cost for the 'free' special edition junk... and I don't really care that much about the extras. Not enough to go out and effectively buy them separately.
Good thing I've locked my credit card away.

April 15 will be a very nice day indeed.

I'm getting the

.hack//sign box set


Family Guy Seasons 1 & 2


Futurama Season 1


and Spirited Away


Mmm... yummy.

And it's only $231 after taxes, which is actually a very nice deal.
Ok. I really like Apex, but I don't like console games that crash. I've had it lock up on the load screen on me on one of the first 4 races that I have to play. Sigh. Hopefully it's just something that'll go away if I restart the game. If it happens again though, I'm just taking the game back.

Seems like I'm not the only person who has had this happen.
Now this is good.

A letter to the London Observer from Terry Jones (ex Monty Python). Letter
to the Observer Sunday January 26, 2003 The Observer

I'm really excited by George Bush's latest reason for bombing Iraq: he's
running out of patience. And so am I! For some time now I've been really
pissed off with Mr Johnson, who lives a couple of doors down the street.
Well, him and Mr Patel, who runs the health food shop. They both give me
queer looks, and I'm sure Mr Johnson is planning something nasty for me, but
so far I haven't been able to discover what. I've been round to his place a
few times to see what he's up to, but he's got everything well hidden.
That's how devious he is. As for Mr Patel, don't ask me how I know, I just
know - from very good sources - that he is, in reality, a Mass Murderer. I
have leafleted the street telling them that if we don't act first, he'll
pick us off one by one. Some of my neighbours say, if I've got proof, why
don't I go to the police? But that's simply ridiculous. The police will say
that they need evidence of a crime with which to charge my neighbours.
They'll come up with endless red tape and quibbling about the rights and
wrongs of a pre-emptive strike and all the while Mr Johnson will be
finalising his plans to do terrible things to me, while Mr Patel will be
secretly murdering people.

Since I'm the only one in the street with a decent range of
automaticfirearms, I reckon it's up to me to keep the peace. But until
recently that's been a little difficult. Now, however, George W. Bush has
made it clear that all I need to do is run out of patience, and then I can
wade in and do whatever I want! And let's face it, Mr Bush's carefully
thought-out policy towards Iraq is the only way to bring about international
peace and security. The one certain way to stop Muslim fundamentalist
suicide bombers targeting the US or the UK is to bomb a few Muslim countries
that have never threatened us. That's why I want to blow up Mr Johnson's
garage and kill his wife and children. Strike first! That'll teach him a
lesson. Then he'll leave us in peace and stop peering at me in that totally
unacceptable way.

Mr Bush makes it clear that all he needs to know before bombing Iraq is
that Saddam is a really nasty man and that he has weapons of mass
destruction - even if no one can find them. I'm certain I've just as much
justification for killing Mr Johnson's wife and children as Mr Bush has for
bombing Iraq. Mr Bush's long-term aim is to make the world a safer place by
eliminating 'rogue states' and 'terrorism'. It's such a clever long-term aim
because how can you ever know when you've achieved it? How will Mr Bush know
when he's wiped out all terrorists? When every single terrorist is dead? But
then a terrorist is only a terrorist once he's committed an act of terror.
What about would-be terrorists? These are the ones you really want to
eliminate, since most of the known terrorists, being suicide bombers, have
already eliminated themselves.

Perhaps Mr Bush needs to wipe out everyone who could possibly be a future
terrorist? Maybe he can't be sure he's achieved his objective until every
Muslim fundamentalist is dead? But then some moderate Muslims might convert
to fundamentalism. Maybe the only really safe thing to do would be for Mr
Bush to eliminate all Muslims? It's the same in my street. Mr Johnson and Mr
Patel are just the tip of the iceberg. There are dozens of other people in
the street who I don't like and who - quite frankly - look at me in odd
ways. No one will be really safe until I've wiped them all out. My wife says
I might be going too far but I tell her I'm simply using the same logic as
the President of the United States. That shuts her up.

Like Mr Bush, I've run out of patience, and if that's a good enough reason
for the President, it's good enough for me. I'm going to give the whole
street two weeks - no, 10 days - to come out in the open and hand over all
aliens and interplanetary hijackers, galactic outlaws and interstellar
terrorist masterminds, and if they don't hand them over nicely and say
'Thank you', I'm going to bomb the entire street to kingdom come. It's just
as sane as what George W. Bush is proposing - and, in contrast to what he's
intending, my policy will destroy only one street.

Wednesday, February 26, 2003

Blob Lander! It's fun.

(I just woke up, hence my lack of verbal wit and sparkle.)
Dog Soldiers is surprisingly good! I really enjoyed it.

Tuesday, February 25, 2003

Tuesday is DVD day!

I picked up Road To Perdition, which rocks, and on the way home from work I stopped at Blockbuster and picked up Dog Soldiers (some kind of werewolf horror flick which I thought would be cheesy, but seems to have some good reviews on IMDB) and The Good Girl, which is supposed to be pretty good, and has Jake Gyllenhaal in it.

Wow, that's one long sentence.

And the last two movies were cheap. $9.99 cheap. Gooooo previously viewed movies!

Sunday, February 23, 2003

StopTheSpin.org


WOAH...

Lots of snow this morning. About 2 feet or so, I'd guess. I couldn't even get my car out of the parking lot to go to work. Not that that's really a bad thing :)

Since I wasn't leaving the house, I was able to finish Disaster Report today. VERY cool game, but not for everyone.

Saturday, February 22, 2003

Hmm... Adcritic is back, but you have to pay to go in. Sigh. I like my web free, damn it!
And in further reports of disaster, my little army brat of a brother is engaged! AHHHH!!!

Congrats though, Grant & Suzie.
Disaster Report is pretty neat. I haven't played that much of it, but I am impressed on how it does the whole "CITY FALLING APART UNDER YOUR FEET" dealie.
This isn't the 404 you're looking for.

Friday, February 21, 2003

Just got back from the auto show. Yawn. But not as yawny as it was two years ago. Yarg.

GM had a neat acrobatics show to roll out a few cars, and the Mitsubishi booth rocked (well, it wasn't that exciting, but I love the music and the cars, so it rocked in my book), so it wasn't as boring as it usually is.

The problem with the Toronto Auto Show is that it's essentially just a big showroom for cars that we mere mortals can actually afford. Literally, it's like a bunch of the dealers in the area got together and decided to pool their resources and show off all their cars at once. (Actually, that's likely what happened.)

I like auto shows like Detroit and Geneva. I want to see cars that depreciate in value just from my looking at their chrome. I want to see concept cars that we laugh at now, but will be driving in a few years. THAT is an auto show. If I just want to see what my local dealer has to sell me, then I'll just go to my local dealer for free, thanks.
Dark Cloud 2 totally rocks 1's socks. I liked 1, even with all of the flaws it had.

I haven't even touched on the Georama system in 2 yet, and it's the one thing I'm really looking forward to. But they've done everything else so well I don't even care that I haven't been able to play around with the Georama stuff yet.

Thursday, February 20, 2003

Well, I didn't get Disaster Report today. I went in to get it, but it wasn't in and when I went back, they only had the Xenosaga art book for me. Mmm...

I did decide that as a treat for getting WAY more retro pay than I expected to get, I'd get Dark Cloud 2 (which has been getting amazing reviews). I'm off to play it now.

I'm glad for the break too. I've been way to busy with Tactics lately.
This is neat. They're doing a little series on The Cartoon Network in between other programs to flesh out the Clone Wars from Star Wars. Neat. I wish we got the Cartoon Network :(
I wouldn't mind seeing this movie. I love Jean Reno (almost typed Janet Reno there... *shudder* ) and Luc Besson is just cool.

I *heart* retro pay.

Wednesday, February 19, 2003

I'm happy now. I finally got past the spot I got stuck at the last time I tried playing Tactics (what, 4 years ago?) so I might actually have a chance of beating this damned game.

Tuesday, February 18, 2003

If you live in or around Toronto, go see Bubba Ho-Tep (the new Bruce Campbell movie) for free tomorrow! I wish I could go :(

"Tomorrow night (Wednesday, February 19) if you live in Toronto you can catch a free showing of Bubba Ho-Tep. It's a film by Don Coscarelli (the guy behind the classic Phantasm). It stars Bruce Campbell as a geriatric Elvis Presley, and Ossie Davis as a black John F. Kennedy. Bubba Ho-Tep is an Egyptian mummy who challenges them to battle in a Midwest retirement home.

The free showing is part of the great Rue Morgue magazine film screenings, held every month at The Vatikan: 1032 Queen Street West, between Ossington and Dovercourt on the North side, right in downtown Toronto. Doors open at 8:00 pm, and the screening is at 8:30 pm. There's free popcorn and prizes, too, so be there or be rectangular."
Well, I've made it to the spot where I was stuck in Final Fantasy Tactics before. Now, I got squished like a bug just now, but I think that if I do it again, I just might be able to survive this time... We'll see.
"Michael Jackson is like Saddam Hussein.
He hasn't done anything for the last 10 years and all of the sudden we're attacking him."
Bill Maher

That's why Bill Maher rocks. I miss Politically Incorrect.

Monday, February 17, 2003

Well, I finally finished watching all 51 episodes of Groove Adventure: RAVE.

Great little anime. It walks the line between being serious and outright ludicrous (much like Trigun) and suceeds for the most part. The worst thing is that they just sort of ended the series and left a lot of loose strings for future movies or something. Sigh. Now I have to find them.
This is one nifty site.

Sunday, February 16, 2003

ph34r the p1ckl3 m0n5t3r

I watched My Big Fat Greek Wedding last night and all I can say is, 'meh'.

It was ok, and had some funny bits (I liked the Windex gag) but otherwise it was just your run of the mill romantic comedy, without much romance or comedy, as far as I could tell. Maybe it's just that Julie was raving about it like it was the funniest thing since The Family Guy or something, but I was definately unimpressed.

Granted, I guess it was better than your average romantic comedy *cough* Maid In Manhattan *cough* but it was no Muriel's Wedding, I'll say that much.

Maybe it was because I didn't really have to deal with the planning part of my wedding... And I was not terribly impressed with John Corbett's character... I loved him on Northern Exposure, but here he just sort of filled space. Oh well.
Just spent the last 3 hours cleaning my office. About time too. I had boxes in here from when we moved in 8 months ago. Yeesh.

Saturday, February 15, 2003

This is why nobody should be allowed to review anything unless they have an English degree.

"While most of the game will remain the same, the bulk of it will change and you will be taken to new areas of the city and meet people you didn't meet before."

So is it the same or does it change? ARG!
It's bloody late, but I'm now officially done watching Season 3 of Sopranos... now I have to wait for Season 4 :P Same with Buffy.

Hmm... I'm done watching all of the TV series I have on DVD now. Yipes! I can actually... gasp... play games instead of watching TV without commercials! AAAAAAH!
I got stalked by this big creepy guy at the Valentine's Dance for the guys at work. It was very amusing, yet creepy :)

Thursday, February 13, 2003

Wednesday, February 12, 2003

I finally snagged myself a very high-quality version of Bowling For Columbine today. It's an amazing movie. If you haven't seen it, either try to see it in the theatres or if you can't find anywhere enlightened enough to show it, scour the internet and watch it. Great flick.

And they have a rather substantial segment filmed in Sarnia, my 'hometown', as it were.
Well, my Blues Brothers, Donnie Darko and MBFGW DVD's arrived today. Woo! I didn't realize that the Blues Brothers DVD was actually an extended edition, much like the Fellowship of the Ring special edition DVD. Woo! I can't wait to see what's new!
Too busy to go downtown? Now you can go on Ebay and get stuff other people stole!
And Bowling For Columbine got a nomination. Woo! I still haven't seen it, but I love Michael Moore. Go read Stupid White Men now.
Ok. This is too funny.

At least Jimmy Neutron wasn't in the friggin' animation category this year. I'm still miffed that it was nominated while the Final Fantasy movie was snubbed last year.

Spirited Away got nominated too, which rocks. I think they need to separate the traditional cel animation from the pure CGI movies (a la Shrek) in order to balance the two types of animation. One can use elements of the other, but to put an excellent anime like Spirited Away up against something like, say, Ice Age is not very fair for the anime, alas.

I guess Treasure Planet was nominated too. I liked that movie in concept, but it was really one of the first animated flicks I've seen lately that really didn't have anything to draw me in. There were a lot of beautiful pictures, but it was trying too hard to be a kiddie movie (which, I agree, it was, but Lilo & Stitch had more edge than 10 Treasure Planets combined).
Gangs of New York got some Oscar nominations. I liked that movie a lot.

In fact, I'm going to look at some big hats again.

Well, I cracked and finally bought Blues Brothers on DVD... I got it on Amazon.ca and lumped it in with Donnie Darko (only $11.99!!!) and My Big Fat Greek Wedding so I get my favourite movie on DVD and Julie gets a present too :) It's all good.

Tuesday, February 11, 2003

Hmm... for the last hour or so I've been hearing these wierd thumps and bangs from outside... I've looked around, but nobody's running around... Either someone is tossing snowballs at my house, or birds are flying around at night and not navigating well.

I'm going to go take one last look.
Tactics = evil.

It's still friggin' hard, but I'm past the initial stages and so long as I use my brain and also retry a level about 300 times, I can actually get places.

Great game, but nastily hard.
Aw... the poor crab! It was just walking along, minding it's own business when someone had to cut a hole in an undersea pipe... oh well.

Monday, February 10, 2003

Yet another thing from interesting land.

"The Jeruslem Post reports that Hizbullah (a Lebanese Shi'i Muslim political/militant group) is developing an action game for the PC that claims to "counter the image of the invincible all-American hero in games sold throughout the world." According to another report in Lebanon's Al-Anwar, Hizbullah says that its Internet unit is designing and planning the game, which will be based battles that took place in south Lebanon. The game will depict Israelis and American military forces as the enemy. The game will reportedly go on sale later this month in Lebanon and will come in Arabic, English, French, and Farsi. Further details can be found at the link above. As G.I. Joe says, knowing is half the battle."

Sunday, February 09, 2003

And Disaster Report, aka the Earthquake Sim, is out in about a week! Double woo!

Woo!

About 3 weeks until Xenosaga is released! Yippee!

Saturday, February 08, 2003

Odyssey 5 was pretty cool tonight. I was even more impressed that they ran it since it ended with a scenario where the International Space Station was about to re-enter the atmosphere much akin to the way the Columbia did last week. And unlike the last few episodes that didn't make a lot of sense or seem to have any real direction, this one was toit like a toiger. Pretty cool 'MSN Messenger gone bad' villian too :)

Gotta love Canadian channels... we won't wimp out like Fox did with John Doe last night (it supposedly revolved around a crashed spaceship or something).

Though I did just find out that supposedly Odyssey 5 is on the verge of cancellation... eep! While it's not perfect, I'm hoping it doesn't suffer the same fate as Firefly or all those Fox sci-fi shows that just start to get going and then get the plug pulled. At least it hasn't been officially cancelled.

This is... odd...

Afterlife Telegrams

'For a fee of $5 per word (5 word minimum), our customers can have a telegram delivered
to someone who has passed away. This is done with the help of terminally Ill volunteers
who memorize the telegrams before passing away, and then deliver the telegrams after
they have passed away. We call this an "afterlife telegram".'
Yup. It's time for something completely stupid. I wonder how fast this'll be up on memepool.com

I've seen it on a bunch of sites just today, so it seems to be the 2003 version of All Your Base Are Belong To Us.

Friday, February 07, 2003

So I started working on Tactics, as I mentioned the other day.

MAN, that game is hard. I keep getting my butt kicked. But I shall prevail. That stupid game has vexed me for long enough!
.hack game review is up on Gamespot. They're pretty much saying it's a decent action RPG, but not as good as Kingdom Hearts.

Thursday, February 06, 2003

They've posted the first episode of the Animatrix on the web today. I can't wait for this to be officially released. Looks amazing.

Wednesday, February 05, 2003

Only thing is, at least today, my brain is too tired to handle Tactics.

I'm going to probably try to beat Final Fantasy Tactics right after I finish up with Divine Divinity. I've had Tactics since, hmm, 1998 and I have tried multiple times to beat it, but this time I'm going to actually sit down, not get distracted and beat the stupid thing!

Though I'd better get on it soon since I have Disaster Report and the unholy Xenosaga coming out at the end of February. EEP!
At least now I can take a Buffy break until June or July when Season 4 comes out.
I finished watching Buffy Season 3 today. Man, it's sad when I watched all 3 seasons in one month. Yikes.

That's 56 eps... eep!
Simpsons had a great Tetris gag last week.

Marge: I don't think we'll be able to fit all of the stuff in the car.
Homer: Aha! That's where my years of playing Tetris will finally be put to use.

Cue Tetris music and Homer folding family members into the various Tetris shapes and mashing them all into the car :)

Unfortunately, that was really the highpoint of the episode. Oh well.

Don't even get me started on 24 from tonight though. Man... I love the show, but I waited at least 2 weeks now since the last new episode... don't make me wait another week to see what will happen!
Holy jeez, it's windy out there. I swear I could have just jumped up in the air and floated home, if I had a more aerodynamic coat.

Granted, my luck I'd end up in the middle of a lake.
Yeah, I know I have an Xbox, and I'm even liking it to a small degree.

It's still nice that the inner Xbox Hater in me can see news like this and chortle. Just goes to show that even if you have the most technically advanced game system out there and a bucket of money, if you don't have good games, you will suffer.

Low Xbox Sales Harm Component Suppliers
Microsoft asked Xbox component suppliers to adjust their shipments since sales of the console do not live up to predictions. The company said it will end the fiscal year within the sales range originally forecasted, but in the bottom half of that range. Hence an adjustment halfway through the fiscal year "is appropriate."

Analysts worry over Nvidia, which is to experience a drop-off in chip shipments to Microsoft. The company suffered a $40 million decline over its revenue of graphics chips for the Xbox in the fiscal third quarter over the second quarter. Forecasts indicate that Nvidia will ship five million chipsets to Microsoft in fiscal 2004, down from about eight million year-over-year.


Xbox Losses Double
Microsoft's quarterly filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission revealed that the losses from the Xbox console have doubled, compared to the same period last year. The Home and Entertainment division, which includes the Xbox and games, posted an operating loss of $348 million in the quarter on revenue of $1.28 billion. A year earlier it had revenue of $833 million and a loss of $180 million. The acquisition of UK-based developer Rare last September cost Microsoft $375 million, but is "immaterial to Microsoft's results of operations."

Monday, February 03, 2003

Yuck. Freezing Rain-apalooza out this way. Luckily I got to drive behind a salt truck the whole way home from work tonight. Unfortunately, that meant my 30 minute drive took almost an hour :(

But I survived the drive to Acton!

Sunday, February 02, 2003

Just what the world needs. A guide on how to play the Xbox safely.

Saturday, February 01, 2003

After I got tired of watching the talking heads on TV, I spent pretty much from about 2pm till 10pm playing Divine Divinity. Super game. You've gotta love a game that has 'Wash the Dishes' as a quest :)

I watched about 6 episodes of Groove Adventure Rave too. Good to see that I was able to fit some anime in on my vacation. Woo.
Well, this was one of those days where I wake up and something crazy is going on.

Shuttle Columbia blew up on re-entry. Now I'm really interested in what the investigation will say. It was interesting watching CBC this morning because they had Dr. Roberta Bondar on (one of Canada's former astronauts). She was very blunt about describing the chances of the crew surviving and went into some detail as to exactly what they'd have to do at the best of times and how hard that was just in practice, let alone with the shuttle disintigrating around you and the fact that they were at 200,000 feet and going about Mach 18 or so when everything decided to come apart.

Very interesting, yet it does bring it back to the public that space travel is not super safe. Just ask the Russians.

I just hope that the space program isn't set back any further than it already is. Sigh.
Have I mentioned that Divine Divinity is a bloody addictive game? I've been up till almost 4am the last couple days playing it.

At least I still have tomorrow and most of Sunday to lounge around and play it some more. Though I would like to work on Splinter Cell too... hmm...
Oh, I got a garden gnome in Animal Crossing. Today was RAFFLE DAY and I actually won a bunch of stuff. Thank god, since my basement in my house was full of raffle tickets for the month.
I tried to make some thai peanut chicken noodles tonight, but they turned out pretty gross.

I think I know what to do to fix the leftovers so they're edible though.