Friday, January 30, 2009

Tea Pot Watch '09 (part 1)

So for my 3D design class I was tasked to do a wrapped object, which is a normal object wrapped with anything I can think of. I decided to take a couple of teapots and cover them in a mix of paper mache and potting soil, then alfalfa seeds. It worked surprisingly well so far and since it could fail at any moment, I decided to document the process.


Tea Pot 1

Hopefully the seeds sprout and it looks way cool but honestly just the form as is looks pretty interesting. I'll update when anything interesting happens. Fingers crossed people!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Democracy at Its Finest

So, Obama is now officially in office and Bush is forever in his ranch in Crawford.

In honor of our Nation's great political workings finally... working, I'd like to bring to your attention two causes which are perhaps more important than the presidential election itself.

The first is Crow in the battle of the bands. They're in second place and Give 'er Hell is in first, which is an offense of the highest order, because Give 'er Hell is total shit. You can vote every day, so do so.

The second is a cause that will profoundly touch the hearts of millions. Blizzard is letting people vote for what the new Dark Templars look like in Starcraft II. One option is the original option, the Lenassa tribe, which was what the original Starcraft Dark Templars were. The second option is that bulllshit Zer'atai tribe with their double scythes and shitty looking in game models. Don't stand for that shit, vote for the Lenassa tribe.

So get out there and do your democratic part people! Yes we can!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Press "One" For Soul Mate

I really don't want to go in.
I hate dealing with people and-
What's this? I thought this was the bank, not Heaven.
Stay calm, just (oh god she has perfect hands!)

No! Ok she's cute but that's moot.
Just stay in line and act normal.
She sounds cute too. Not that I can hear from here.
Just... Damn. She's extra cute.

Yes hi, I'd like to make a... withdrawal.
Why yes my name is really awesome sounding, yours is too.
I read it off your name tag (and cryed it in my dreams).
I mean. Um. Yeah.

My shirt? Uh yeah it is nice.
(Jesus! No one could get that reference!)
And that means she must have played the whole
series too cause... it's getting warm in here.

You leave and I'm left with that wave of creamy floral scent.

We're having a fight on the roof of your
studio apartment. You just love me too much dear.
I need my space. You tell me you'd do anything
but I already know.

I'm taking your glasses off in the back of my
subcompact and I get a look at your eyes for the first time,
the first real time. And then we have sex and it's like,
really awesome. Like way awesome. The sex is.

Your Dad is a pretty chill dude you know,
And I can just call him Larry, and
he's not wary of my character at all.
Your brother's pool is a pretty kick ass place for a bachelor party.

I don't tell you that last part but your brother and I wink at the reception.

He knows.

I know what we should name him, I've had it picked out forever.
Leon! It's the coolest boy name ever.
I know you want to name him after your grandfather, dear.
We'll compromise. (But George is a name I despise).

And we have sex and it's totally rad.

Your face hasn't aged at all dearest.
It's the truth, you look just as beautiful as the day we met.
You'll have to speak up I'm heard of hearing.
I love you too, happy aniver-

Huh? Oh um... yeah 300 dollars.
In twenties and tens, if that's cool.
No like, 200 in twenties, 100 in...yeah. Cool.
Yeah you too.

I go back to the car where we first...well you know.
As close as I looked at you over all those years,
as inscrutable as the details became...

...I must have missed your wedding ring.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


My good friend Vvinni always had really dedicated new years resolutions when we were growing up, and continues to to this day. The one I've chosen to emulate is "write something everyday", but since writing is the secondary to what I want to do with my life, I've altered it to "draw something everyday". The rule is it can be anything and I can only spend one hour on it. Comics do count because the longest they've been is around 5 hours, so c'mon.

So far I have drawn a banana.

As for Tea Time though I am more and more proud of everything I put up there, consistently. The DMV one was written really well and I thought drawn better than the others (like, it has backgrounds) and the exploding high five I've made into my desktop because it's so fucking awesome. Today's might be a little subverse and defiently more weird than the previous ones but I am very proud of what we managed to do.

Anyway Parker wants me to start fucking around with his Prisma color markers, and I'm behind by about 10 new years drawings, so it's very possible I'll scan some shit and put it up here, turn it into a kind of sketch blog.

Also keep a heads up for bad poetry.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Games of the Year 2008

I don't remember most of what came out this year because it's very hard to, and I missed most of the ludicrously awesome titles that have come out in the holiday season due to money constraints, however this is a list of games I've played this year and fucking loved. Also brief comments on games I played and was underwhelmed by.

Crisis Core
Holy God, people kind of had to shut up about the PSP after this game, and I had to shut up about Final Fantasy 7 getting fucked by assholes who don't know what they're doing. I'm still of the mindset that 7 wasn't all it's cracked up to be, but even objectively this game is better in almost every way. The graphics are gorgeous, the writing, yes the writing in a Final Fantasy game is superb, and of the titles with rich characters this year, CC takes a very high spot on the chart. The gameplay is basic but perfectly fun, the cinematics aren't just awesome but move the story, and the story is actually more engaging and coherent than the source material. Best prequel ever? Yes. 5th best game out this year.

Dead Space
I heard about this game about a year ago, and like that it was released. When EA decided to make a new franchise and spend some of their mountains of gold on it to make it totally fucking awesome, I was skeptical, but throw in a prequel comic illustrated by Ben Templesmith, ridiculously good looking graphics, and better gameplay than RE4, and you get my 4th favorite game this year. Dead Space really does set a new standard for survival horror, and while they don't fuck with you in the same psychological ways that I like to be fucked with, the idea that you never trust anything on the ship, from elevators to boxes to lights, for the whole game, is honestly phenomenal. The art team of this game either loved it to death or were paid massive amounts, but the fact that it isn't obvious is very nice. Scary, fun, worthy of all the praise it's gotten and ten times the sales.

Little Big Planet
I'm not sure that there's another game this year that could be more unanimously hung up in an art gallery than Little Big Planet. It's the essence of modern art; exceptionally beautiful and participatory on every level. The tools they give you are astounding, the levels that they created themselves within the games are so polished they are hard to look at. It's pretty much everything good about video games, and anyone can play it. I'd like to know why this isn't bundled with every PS3. LBP gets the third spot.

Fallout 3
This is almost tied for first place, and things being different it would take it, but I'll get to that. When I heard Fallout 3 got handed to Bethesda I was still a little burned by Oblivion, but I never played the Fallouts before it, so the worst it could be was an entertaining, solid game, not a sacrilege to the series like so many thought it would be. Everything I heard and saw about it seemed more and more encouraging, and by God, this game is a phenomenon. It has everything, and the universe is so complete it stands as a kind of monument. The main plot is incredible, your father's character is irresistible to grow attached to, and the combat is addictive and fun as hell. Not one particle of this game was halfassed, any one part of it feels just as well done as any other part. They didn't just do a great job but they succeeded my expectations far and wide. There was a point where I almost said "stop, I believe you that you're great" but the game was unrelenting. From what I understand of Fallout 2, they did a better job with this sequel than the original developer did. Second place.

Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
One thing you should know about me if you don't is that I fucking love Metal Gear. It's my favorite series, and this is the best of them, so logically it's my favorite game of all time. Logically yes, but there are a couple asterisks I throw in there. Let's start with the good. This game is the best looking game ever made. Dead Space looks more uniformly realistic but MGS4 has a couple scenes with are unparalleled graphically, and the models look so good they look like actors. Metal Gear's psudo realism aesthetic is fully realized, I don't think it can ever look any better than it does. Gameplay is lightyears ahead of where the first one was, and while the control scheme takes some serious getting used to, it's pretty excellent. The multiplayer mode is just the gameplay engine and by God, it's a blast (also, Multiplayer mode, excellent move).
What propels you in Metal Gear though, isn't the gameplay or graphics it's the story, and this being its conclusion it shouldn't disappoint. Well it doesn't, because it exceeds your expectations, but at the very same time, while you can see the game reaching for a narrative that's grander than anything ever previously represented in a video game, teetering on the shoulders of giants, it then very very quickly catches itself doing this and recoils back into mediocrity. While for any other game this would mean the difference between good and bad, for Metal Gear it's the difference between the greatest fucking video game ever made and exceptional, so you at least get a good story from it. What I mean is that at one point in the game, I thought one of the character's died, and in the way he did, I immediately started what could only be aptly described as a screaming cry-gasm. I've never cried so hard in my life. This was very quickly removed as we find out that he's actually not dead. His death was so magnificent that I can't help but think there was a last minute script change or something.
The fact that they didn't go all the way almost hits me harder than the ideas they didn't go all the way with.
It is the best Metal Gear, and it is a worthy end, and that's some very exceptional praise, but what it could have been is something I could hold as a shield to any of the "games aren't art" fuckers that still stick to their bullshit (yeah that's you Ebert, fuck you), but I guess that duty will just be upheld by Little Big Planet. It takes the number one spot not only for this year but all years previous, at least to me, but the silhouette left by what this game could have been is so massive it's almost disqualifying.
It's also not without its faults, like clunky writing (Fallout has it totally beat in this regard) and occasionally underwhelming gameplay. Even with it's glaring flaws it still manages to come in first.


The Force Unleashed:
Not only was this game half assed, it obliterated some 30 canonized Star Wars books in the process. The least you could say was that it was worth it but no, the story is an insult to the series, and the gameplay is fun at best. Fuck you guys, I want my Star Wars back.
Mirror's Edge:
Granted I only played the demo, but if that doesn't get you hooked what can? I like the originality in the idea, but it doesn't work. If it were third person, completely sandbox, and a little less pretentious, (and flash cinematics, really guys? Not going to show off those incredible graphics?) I wouldn't have been able to let it go without buying it. As is: meh, good try guys.
Prince of Persia:
While this a gorgeous game, and I want more people to make things that look like it, it isn't Sands of Time. While SoT may not be the greatest game ever I don't think they can top it, and if they were trying they should try a lot fucking harder. While I like the characters, and dialogue, they seem like they're plucked right from Uncharted, and in the Prince's case, they didn't even change his accent or vocabulary. Uncharted is not how you make likable characters you assholes. It worked there but it's barely above tolerable here. If I see one more "charming American badass" archetype I will fucking kill someone. I'm glad I got this for Christmas but I honestly don't know if I'll even finish it.

That's about it kids, thanks for reading.

Video games!