BIGMercenary / Member

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BIGMercenary Blog

Its been 6 months...

And I'm still not coming back to a community full of hateful, spiteful, whiny gamers and trolls. People with opinions are shunned and those with spiteful opinions are applauded. Gamespot has joined the ranks of the worst of the gaming sites such as Destructoid and GiantBomb. The only reason I keep my account is to keep track of my games.

What's worse is that this blog is public, so undoubtedly there will be a troll comment here soon.

Am I being too harsh? No. Not with the way the users of this site have treated me in the past for having my own opinion.

My Gaming History, Abridged

I have recently discovered that it is mentally impossible to be sad while the Super Mario World overworld theme is playing (wait about 40 seconds for the Yoshi bongos).


See? I told you.

I can't remember which was my first experience playing video games, or the year, but it was about 1991. I do remember having two babysitters growing up; family friends with kids of their own. One family had an NES while the other had an Atari 2600. Eventually the second family bought a Nintendo and a year later my brother and I were given one. Its the only time I can remember my dad actually playing video games with us: the Super Mario Bros. and Duck Hunt combo game.
I went through having an original Game Boy, a Game Boy Pocket, a Game Gear, a Nomad, a Genesis, and a crappy computer. These were the systems that I grew to love gaming on and would borrow games from friends and vice versa.
My brother and I always hoped to be the first one home after school so we could play whatever new games we had on whatever console we had then. I was rarely obsessed with the games I had but ones such as AAHHH!! Real Monsters, Vectorman, MUSHA, and even Bubsy (I was young, don't judge me) always captivated my attention.

I remember being obsessed with Pokemon in 6th and 7th grade. I would always look forward to waking up on weekdays before school just to watch the Pokemon cartoon. I had the comics from Nintendo Power, I had toys, I had plush dolls, the strategy guide, and the cards. Still do. They're in a box in my closet. A little while after going to a meeting for the Pokemon card game I just gave up on it all. It must have had something to do with the old-looking guy that was sitting around playing a card game with a bunch of kids and being serious about it.
A demo of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater came about via a Pizza Hut promotion and I was instantly captivated with the sport. I credit the Pro Skater series with turning me towards gaming even after going through a phase of being a skateboarding poser. After seeing how skateboarders treated each other and how no one was willing to teach me to ride one I delved into gaming more.

Some time in the summer before 10th grade I bought a Gamecube and for a year I only had Super Smash Bros Melee to play. I discovered EB Games and unfortunately sold off most of my collection, which included almost all of my PS1, NES, GameBoy, Genesis, and some PC games.
A year later I bought myself an Xbox when I read that if Monolith were to make a Shogo 2, it would be on that console. Shogo: Mobile Armor Division was the first PC FPS game I ever played. Not Doom, not Quake, and to this day it remains in my all-time favorites. I played on a crappy, over-priced, underpowered Gateway computer that could barely run flash games well enough. A friend loaned me some RAM and from there things got better. I could finally play games in a slightly higher quality. I also got interested in computers and fixing them. I had to otherwise the computers we had would succumb to viruses. But despite my best efforts they would always get ruined. I don't know how many times I've had to reformat the computers we've had but it was a pain to lose my saved games after pouring hours and hours into them.

My childhood hero was Sonic the Hedgehog. I had a plush doll, still have it in fact, that I carried around with me everywhere for over a year. I never took it to school because I was afraid of it being stolen or ripped by some other kid. Ironically that didn't help because the neck ripped open while it was in the wash. I watched the SatAM cartoons near-religiously, I had a couple of comic books, I had the Tiger handheld, I have a VHS tape of the cartoons, I had toys galore. Eventually I just grew up and Sonic lost his attitude when the Dreamcast came around.
I remember being in middle school and a friend of mine would always badmouth the Dreamcast for whatever reason we could find. We were Sony fanboys and we were dedicated to the console. Yet, whenever I looked and read about the games being released I was secretly envious of it. Oh how wrong I was to look down upon the console. A few years ago I bought a used DC and a few games for it. I can't believe how ignorant I was back then.
The original blue blur will always be one of my heroes, not this green-eyed poser you see in today's games that can't do anything right.

My favorite game of all-time is Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 on the Dreamcast. The graphics are superior to the other consoles, even PC, and it just had this overall feeling of completion. It's the definitive version of Pro Skater 2 in my mind. Neversoft asked fans what they wanted and they implemented those ideas into the game. The level editor, the create-a-skater, an expanded soundtrack, Spider-Man as a secret character, and a couple more pros added to the already amazing line-up made THPS2 the perfect way to do a sequel. I own almost every version of Pro Skater 2 with the exception of the Mac and iPod versions.

I'm a collector with a preference for the old school. My current collection total sits at over 400. Lately though I've been feeling that its all for nothing so my collecting has slowed down significantly.
I have some rare gems in my collection such as M.U.S.H.A. and Legend of Dragoon as well as a few others.
I was never really into RPGs and RTSs. They seem to be clones of one another. But I'm coming around: I've been playing a few of each and, although I'm not awestruck by them, they can at least hold my attention.
Sim racing is my favorite genre. It takes more skill than arcade racing and has helped me with driving in real life.

I don't consider myself a professional, and I'm certainly not an amateur. I'm not hardcore or casual. I don't dispute console faults and advantages. I'm a gamer. I find the best of each and play them as equals. Fanboys are the most annoying, ignorant, and selfish beings on the internet.
I've been expanding my gaming horizons lately and have played some Magic the Gathering.
I also want to start a DnD group, but I can't find anyone willing to delve into the adventures with me.

This is part of where I stand when it comes to gaming. I hope, if you've been paying attention to my blogs any, that you get a general sense of who I am gaming-wise. Without video games, I don't know where I'd be. They've been there through rough times and they've also caused some great moments (double kill headshot with a single bullet in SOCOM:Combined Assault. No one else will ever see that). I feel like I'm a part of something big and that's how I like it. Gaming crosses so many cultural boundaries and is being pushed forward by people with bright ideas. I enjoy those ideas. I wish many others would as well.

Keep Playing.

Wreck-It Ralph Movie Review

(This review is spoiler-free. Also quick and hastily written.)


Let me start by saying that if you're expecting a hardcore movie all about video games then you'll be disappointed. Actually, you shouldn't be because its still a good movie. Its about a single character and for once its not a Disney princess. Also Pixar was involved in this, its all Disney, so don't go looking for the Pizza Planet truck.

Should you set your mind to see it, you should try and imagine yourself as a kid again. Don't be so serious about video games and if you are then try to have a little fun with it. I say little because most of the humor is childish and never even once borders near adult. Its also never spoon feeds a "retro is better" message to the audience.

The plotline is well written, not all about video games. While it is shallow its never too complicated to follow. Some kids might not understand a few things and it won't dwell to explain them. It doesn't jump from game to game and try to cash in on licenses either. The special characters are guests and never main, never distractions. It shows a few memorable moments in the credits such as Sonic in Chemical Plant Zone. For a Disney movie its the typical fare of "underdog saves the day." There are few too many lingering poop jokes and the name calling at one point will probably make you wish they'd just stop.

Animation is sort of lacking in the texture department, don't expect it to look like a AAA game but there are moments where you notice the digitized textures on a few things and can only chuckle about the nod to the olden days of gaming. The big "violent" or scary moment comes during the Heros Duty segment, which lasts about 10 minutes. Another moment comes from one character repeatedly slapping another. Its comedic humor with an air of goofiness and will get the kids laughing. I noticed a moment in the first part of the movie where a reflective wall texture showed the image that was through the wall. Character designs are reflective of their games: Ralph and Felix are simple due to their primitive game, Sergeant Calhoun is intricately textured, the people of Sugar Rush are kids in a kid's game. Most of the movie takes place in the game Sugar Rush and at one point I found myself wondering if they were just going to end the movie with Ralph staying there.

Voice acting is superb with John C. Reilly playing the part of Ralph as a big, lumbering man. He's never dumbed down or flat-toned due to his size. It took me a long while to place Jack McBrayer as who he was, and playing Felix he can't escape that slight southern drawl he has. Sarah Silverman as Vanellope von Schweetz is probably one of the better characters as she plays the part so well, childish insults and high energy. Jane Lynch as Sergeant Calhoun brings a toughness to the character, no-nonsense, but she's never gentle.

The music soundtrack, to me anyway, was a little bit of a let down. It could have used less Owl City and more chiptunes music. Artists such as I Fight Dragons or Animaniguchi would have been a better choice.

Plot villain almost smacks you right in the face upon the explanation of something. I won't spoil it but you should be able to see it coming. When it does show you'll understand that some decent thought went into it. However the villain is never really a major part, even near the end. Its more of a minor inconvenience when compared to a bigger threat.

Just about the only gripe you might come up with is that it uses up its bag of guest appearances in the first 45-50 minutes. Pac-Man and Sonic are good and all, but a few more minutes screen time wouldn't have hurt. Don't discard that as a bad move: its a movie about Ralph, not about the other star characters. They're never shoe-horned in and are mainly background filler. Moments where you can point out who is who. Don't expect to see Mario anywhere besides being mentioned. Nintendo wanted too much money for his appearance and they probably would have wanted more screen time. While Bowser does make an appearance its understandable with the "Bad-Anon" meeting that takes place at the beginning.

Should you see it? Of course.

Should you get the DVD/Blu-Ray. Yeah.

Should you get the game? No. They're cash-ins with little imagination to them anyway.

Just remember, if you do go see it: put your Modern Warfare attitude on pause and go back to the days when you played NES.

Finally, an update

I've gotten used to my job so far. It hurts a lot less than when I first started. I've had back aches, groin pulls, cuts, bruises, various pains, and my feet may never recover.

I've bought myself a new laptop and it does very well in regards to graphics and processing. I expect it to hold its own in the next few years when it comes to games. I can run Crysis at mid-level with practically no stutter.

My dad died in December from cancer. My family has actually been doing better since then. There's less stress around the house and my mom bought a new Dodge Journey with the insurance money. Greedy? I think not. Our van was on its last leg and we needed something new.

I expect to have my own car by the middle of this year. My tax money gave me a boost but its disappearing quickly due to having to eat and paying for meals for my family (not to mention I've been splurging on games. Guilty as charged). Its the least I can do. My paychecks can't come quickly enough.

I still don't trust GameSpot because of the community and lately it seems they've been trying too hard with all of their live shows. While it is something new to watch most of them just seem campy and scripted.

I'll update in the next few months but don't hold your breaths.

Working Class Gamer

(I wonder who's going to report me for posting this blog. Hey admins, is any of this against the TOS? And no, this blog doesn't mean I'm coming back to GS. I still prefer 1up.)

I recently got and started a job, and by recently I mean just last week, and its already killing me. Flipping burgers is not how I imagined my life to be so many years ago, but after 5 years of not having a job I'm not complaining

Per se. I'm just not complaining about the paycheck that I'll get in two weeks.

So far I've been cursed out by a 300 lb black guy because he didn't get his grits in time, taunted by a car full of drunk black guys, and had to listen to black women talk loudly over each other trying to order at the same time (no, I'm really not being racist. The place I work at is in the ghetto part of town). All of this while being shuffled around the work place and having to keep up appearances. Take off your hat to wipe the sweat off and get reprimanded by the manager.

So far I've worked the past 4 nights in a row. I pulled off my first full shift last night and my body still regrets it, and it'll be another all-nighter again starting in just under 2 hours of writing this. I keep thinking about the paycheck even though I know it'll somehow suck for me. I of course plan to buy some games every now and then but I've also got other stuff to save up for.

I NEED a new laptop. Something better than this Dell with a broken disc drive. I also want to get a laptop each for a friend of mine and his sister that moved away last year. His family has been down on their luck for a while now and I just want to do something to let them know I appreciate them. On top of that there's paying rent, saving up, and buying a few things I want and need.

Lately my gaming habits have been small-time stuff. Some Quake 2, radiangames Crossfire 2, and whatever crappy things I have on my Android. Its become now to where I only count down the hours until I have to work next... and I've only had this job for less than a week! My sleeping habits are out of whack even though I used to stay up until 3 in the morning. Mentally I can handle it, physcially I'm in pain. I haven't been eating right either. Until a few hours ago it was almost 24 hours until I ate something for real.

I know I'll get used to the physical wearing-out eventually, but I don't have to like it when I'm treated like a servant by people who can't/don't/won't understand that it takes time to cook food.
Ya know, for all the accomplishments, amazing feats, high scores and such we can do in games, they REALLY don't matter in the real world. Playing Tetris hasn't helped me with this job yet.
I'm just blowing off some steam. I might lay down for a bit before having to go off.

Keep Playing.

I think I'm gonna jump ship now.

Earlier this week I tried to log on only to get a "This user has been banned" message. Surprisingly I wasn't but I'm pretty tired of it.

Find me there. The user community is, so far, more mature than the arguing fanboys here.