Random thoughts

I haven't posted anything here since last September. Almost no one I know and no one I followed still posts to Livejournal. I never really found an alternative. Facebook is for a different thing. I never bothered with Google+. And I'm not a Twitter person. I'll post thoughts here for old time's sake.

The manga Kaibutsu Oujo (Princess Resurrection) ended. I knew it was ending a while back, but it slipped off my radar. I'd previously wondered if re-reading it would make sense of all the time travel/alternate timeline stuff, but I've a feeling that it won't. It ended, well, kind of like I'd expected and somewhat unexpected. It wraps up the original Hime story, but leaves a new story with Sherwood untold. I'd still like to see this series remade as a decent anime. This was a horror series, but the anime series that it got removed the darkness and turned it into a comedy.

I finally watched Dredd, the 2012 film based on the Judge Dredd comics. It wasn't bad. It was pretty faithful to the source material, unlike the Stallone version. Unfortunately, it didn't make enough money to field a sequel. And, honestly, I couldn't see the film being a success. While it is faithful, it is too low scale. It just doesn't feel like a box office film, it feels like an episode of a high budget TV series. You've got a whole Mega-City in a post-apocalyptic world, but everything happens inside a single apartment complex, and Dredd goes after a single criminal who waits at the top. I'm not really sure what could have been done to fix this though. Fans would likely cry for Judge Death, but that is not the way to start a movie series (because you likely only go downhill from there) and it might be too much thrown at non-fans for a solo film. (It's like Nolan saving the Joker for The Dark Knight, instead of using him for Batman Begins.)

Wii-U woes

Developers have had widely differing opinions about the power of the Wii-U. One week you'd see developer A say that the Wii-U is much stronger than the 360/PS3, and then the next week developer B would say that the Wii-U is weaker than the 360/PS3. Some of this was chalked up to the final specs being unconfirmed, or that early dev consoles were intentionally underpowered.

But now there is a new, more detailed, claim...

Nintendo improved with the GPU and RAM, but skimped on the CPU.

Basically, if your game is mostly reliant on the GPU, then you notice the extra power. If your game is reliant on the CPU, then you notice the system's weakness.

This is apparently an issue with the Wii-U port of Warriors Orochi 3, which wouldn't be unexpected as Koei's Warriors series rely on a system's CPU for its number of enemies.

I wonder if it will be a greater problem in the future, if games like Borderlands 2 make an increased push for extra graphical flair through physics simulations. If you don't have dedicated physics hardware, then you can at least use a system's CPU to do some work.

The "hardcore" and WiiU Bayonetta 2

Bayonetta 2 has been announced as a WiiU exclusive, and comments on gaming news sites have erupted.

So now we have:

1) People *****ing about it being a Nintendo-exclusive, claiming that Platinum Games has betrayed them and/or annoyed that Nintendo would pay for an exclusive of a game that they want.

Except... It is an exclusive because Nintendo is publishing it. There were reports months ago that Sega had passed on publishing a Bayonetta sequel. Bayonetta 2 quite possibly wouldn't exist if Nintendo hadn't stepped in.

2) People *****ing about how they aren't going to buy the game because it on the WiiU.

Except... Before this announcement, I can only wonder how many of those same people had been knocking the Wii for only having ports of existing games and not having titles that interested them. So they say that they don't want a WiiU because it doesn't have anything that they want, but the WiiU having something that they want only makes them hate the system more.

Bonus Except... I also have to wonder how many of the complainers would actually have bought Bayonetta 2 if it was released on a system that they did own. Despite its acclaim and the seeming consensus that it is a great hardcore experience, it was not a blockbuster. But people are certainly quite willing to say that due to reason X they will or won't buy something, while being completely detached from the reality of whether or not they'd actually buy it. (I felt like linking to the screenshot of the Left 4 Dead 2 boycott group taken after the game was released, which showed several of the people listed as currently playing Left 4 Dead 2, but that's more work than I feel like doing at the moment. You can pretend that I linked to it if you want.)

anime torment

I first read about this on Madman's Cafe, as the victim is apparently a very skilled KOF13 player. (Professor at Madman's refers to him as the top Terry player in Japan.) Actually, I'd earlier heard that something had gone on involving the anime Kokoro Connect, but since I didn't care about the series, I didn't follow up.

Short version is that it became public how people involved with the anime series Kokoro Connect tricked and humiliated a minor voice actor. It all ended up pretty ugly, and the fallout had apparently led to a boycott of the anime series as well as other things.

Someone else gives a better, longer, summary here...

Random anime thoughts

Jinrui wa Suitai Shimashita (Humanity Has Declined) remains the pleasant surprise. Set when fairies have appeared and humanity is on the slow road to extinction, this is a comedy, one with sometimes some dark bits to that comedy. My one complaint is how the arcs seem to be playing out in reverse order. I prefer stories to go forward, but the 3rd arc is set before the 1st, and the 4th arc is set before the 3rd. This is more annoying when the arcs are all two episodes each, so you might only get five or six stories total before the series ends.

Hyouka ended the Kanya Fes arc, or the SNK cosplay arc if you prefer. Yes, the festival arc had a character that cosplayed as a different SNK character for each day. Nakoruru and King outfits both received a decent showing, but Mai only managed a couple of brief background shots of her back on the final day.

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Yue Ying

The Last (Wii) Story?

I picked up The Last Story yesterday, but I've yet to play it. Honestly, I don't know when I will. Since its Japanese release, there have been months at a time where I was looking for something to play, and particularly for a Wii game to play. But Nintendo of America has its own weird logic (remember NOA they delayed the release of Samurai Warriors 3 for months, pushing it back until it was within a couple of weeks of its only competition, Sengoku Basara 3,) and in this case it meant months of boredom followed by a release after no one cared anymore.

Why am I not playing it now? I haven't turned on the Wii in probably months, with Xenoblade sitting unfinished. (I liked Xenoblade, but I'd gotten sidetracked by other things and never managed to get back into it.) I've been playing more PC stuff, particularly since the last big Steam sale. I've been doing other things, so games in general have been getting less time, except for where I'm finally playing STALKER (on the PC.) So, even though I now own the game, I've no idea when I might ever actually start playing The Last Story.

Dungeon Fighter Meh

Finally tried the demo for Dungeon Fighter Live, the Xbox 360 port of Dungeon Fighter Online.

It was fairly disappointing. Very disappointing, when you consider that DFO felt like it wanted to be a console game. A friend described DFL as a bad SNES game.

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  • Current Mood
    disappointed disappointed

Kicking Kickstarter

Penny Arcade has started a Kickstarter project.

The goal? If they get $250,000, they'll remove one ad from their homepage for one year. For $525,000, they'll remove all ads from their homepage for one year. For $999,999, they'll remove all ads from their site for one year.

The rewards? For $300, one of them will friend you on Twitter for a year. For $1,000, one of them will friend you on Xbox Live for a year.

Is it a joke? Is it serious? Does the distinction even matter when nearly a thousand people have already pledged nearly $66,000?
  • Current Mood
    depressed depressed

Diablo III security

After all the hacking claims started, I saw a conspiracy theory that Blizzard intentionally gave Diablo III poor security in order to push its Authenticator, which they happen to sell fancy versions of for $6.50 in their shop.

So... The current thing to blow up is not only that Diablo III uses case-insensitive passwords, but that apparently Blizzard doesn't see it as a problem (even amidst reports of account hacking)?

When the issues was raised in a bug report thread on, a QA quite happily responded "This is actually consistent with all of our Blizzard games. Try it in WoW and SC2 :)". When people understandably got upset, the QA said "Please leave discussions like this to the General Discussion forums. I'm not going to keep posting on threads if my answer to someone's bug report is a huge discussion about something that isn't a bug." and the thread was locked.

To be fair, I can see the logic of locking the thread if it isn't officially considered a bug, but still the whole mess just looks bad. Bad that Blizzard's security is so poor, particularly in the wake of various hacking claims. Worse that Blizzard seems okay with their security holes. Worse still that they take this apparent attitude while selling a product to improve their poor security. (Note also that case-insensitivity isn't the only thing that people have complained about in regards to Blizzard's security systems. It has other problems as well.)

And I do wonder just how much money Activision/Blizzard stands to make from Authenticator sales. 6.3 million copies of the game itself have already been sold, and I'm sure this hacking blow up has pushed Authenticator sales, even though some have claimed that they've been hacked even using Authenticators.

EDIT: The news part of Tuesday's GUComics perhaps says it best: "don't post freakin' smiley faces when you admit to it not having the most basic of security rulesets."