Archives for October 2005

Buckeye Blogging, Week #9 (6-2)

It’s gotta be tough to be a Golden Gophers fan. Every year they start off hot but every year they cool down. Most of the time, it’s Michigan throwing cold water on the flames but this year Minnesota got the monkey off their back and beat Michigan to regain the Little Brown Jug. Minnesota has a great running game and a mediocre passing game but they’ve played well this season. They were having a rather “Minnesota-like” season. Meaning someone had to lay the smackdown on them.

That someone, of course, was OSU. In a 45-31 tail-whipping, OSU was firing on all cylinders. The highly-touted running back Maroney was held to a paltry 13 yards in the second half. While OSU’s stout defense gave up a smack-ton of yards, the first teamers held Minnesota to one touchdown in the second half. OSU has been making great second-half adjustments.

On offense, the Buckeyes threw up 40+ points for the second game in a row. They were firing on all cylinders. Pittman gashed the defense all day for 186 yards (Maroney who?), Smith and Holmes connected for three scores and TGJ took one 100 yards to the house. It was, in a word, pretty.

The Buckeyes have a game this week against Illinois before it’s revenge time against Northwestern and the big dance in the Big House with Michigan. Things are looking good for the men of the Scarlet and Gray.

Carnival!

There’s less than a week to get your submission into the Carnival! Don’t delay!

IGN goes viral?

I was watching Prison Break this evening (great show that it is) and noticed something interesting. LJ, the son of the wrongly accused Lincoln Burrows is being chased by a couple mysterious (read: ) special agents. They’ve already killed his mother and step-dad and now their after him. In the melee that ensued at his parent’s house, he snapped a picture of one of the bad guys with the camera on his cell phone.

In today’s episode, he had the wherewithal to send the picture to someone, via email. He decided to send himself a copy of the picture. His email address? “LJ@ign.com“. Interesting.

Why is that interesting? Oh, I don’t know, maybe because Fox just purchased IGN and all its trimmings. Virals are everywhere. I’ll have to send LJ an email and find out how he’s doing.

Update: I decided to send an email to the ign.com address. Here’s the message I sent:

From: Tony Rice
To: lj@ign.com
Date: Oct 31, 2005 10:03 PM
Subject: Hi.

I’m glad your safe. I thought those guys had ya.


Tony
http://buttonmashing.com

Here’s the cryptic response I received:

From: LJ
To: tony.rice@gmail.com
Date: Oct 31, 2005 10:03 PM
Subject: Re: Hi.

Hey, how’s it going? I know what a long time it’s been since the last time I talked to you so I just wanted to write back and ask how’s your dad, your mom? I’m on a boat sailing but I’m, looking forward to being home and safe, back in a harbor.

Someone asked me the other day if I remembered what steady land felt like under my legs . I don’t, but I’m sure you do! There’s no need to worry, I’ll be back in the states soon. But I’m enjoying the time I have here in another part of the world. A few days ago we were off the coast of Costa Rica and you wouldn’t believe how many dolphins there were about, all over the water! For me, it was a life changing experience.

I hope things with you are good, and that your luck, as always is unchanged. Be sure to remember that I, and everyone else here thinks about your love, and you, every day!

L.J.

—————————————————————————–

Powered by http://www.IGN.com

Daily coverage of games, gear, movies, and music. Visit today.

That definitely looks viral to me because it makes abso-frickin-lutely no sense. I responded, so we’ll see what happens next.

Update 2: I replied to the cryptic message above with a “huh? That makes no sense” email but the response came back the same. I’m sure there’s hidden meaning in all this but I don’t have time to figure it out. I’m sure some enterprising “enthusiasts” (nerds) will make something out of it but not me. I’m not into the whole viral marketing/ARG kind of thing. It’s fun at first but gets way too confusing way too fast. I’ll watch it from the sidelines but won’t get too involved.

Happy Halloween!

Guild Wars Style:

Image shamelessly stolen here. (Thanks Bushido for the cool pic)

Why must they torture us?

It’s almost that time, fellow gamers, when a certain Cable TV station hijacks our hobby and makes a complete blubbering mockery of it for two hours and makes us feel nauseous. That’s right, it’s time for the Spike TV VGAs (Video Game Atrocities)!

You can go to Kotaku for the complete press release, but I’ll break it down for you, because that’s what I do. It’s well known that we at buttonmashing.com are not friends of the VGAs. I believe my exact words were, “Hey, Spike TV! I want those two hours of my life back.” So it looks like it’s going to be 2004 all over again.

Let’s get the obvious out of the way. What is World of Warcraft doing in the “Game of the Year” Category? Correct me if I’m wrong (I’m not) but WoW was released LAST YEAR. Shouldn’t that, uhmm, disqualify it from consideration? It’s not like 2005 had a dearth of good games and so they had to hold a carry-over from last year. There’s plenty of great games to choose from. How WoW slipped through the cracks boggles the mind.

Let’s get some obvious out of the way. How is a game (King Kong:Blah Blah Let’s make some money off Peter Jackson’s name!) that isn’t even out nominated for 6 awards? And King Kong is the only suspect. There are others. I can’t list them. My brain hurts. Why do we have an award for “Best Cast”? Why is Advanced Wars: DS not included in the “Best Military Game” but Splinter Cell is? Why is it that the more I think about this, the less I want video games to go “mainstream” (and by mainstream I mean hip-hop and Hollywood)? Arrggh!

I’ll just say this: If Resident Evil 4 comes away winless, I will turn off the TV (after the show airs in December), crawl into bed and weep silent tears for witnessing such a horrible tragedy take place. Yes, I will watch it. I will live-blog it so you, my faithful readers will not have to endure it. I will suffer the pain (and desire to gouge my eyes out) so you don’t have. It won’t be easy, but it’s the sort of thing I would do for you guys (and girls).

More: Oh, I almsot forgot! I’m not sure if I should congratulate the nominees for “Best Gaming Blog” or console them for being recognized by Spike TV period. And where’s the love for buttonmashing.com? This is easily the eighteenth or nineteenth most popular blog people visit, right? It’s worth $41k!

Wanna buy a blog?

I normally wouldn’t post something like this (it’s one step removed from a ok-cupid quiz) but I got a laugh from finding out how much buttonmashing.com is worth. With the hullabaloo over Weblogs, Inc. being sold last week, who couldn’t wonder what their blog is worth.


My blog is worth $41,211.42.
How much is your blog worth?

So, how about it? How much is yours worth?

Come join the Carnival

Don’t look now, but the Carnival of Gamers #8 is just around the corner. The Carnival will be hosted over at Aeropause, so get your entries submitted right away. You can get all your Carnival info from the HQ page. Also, if you’re interested, you could take peterb’s challenge to review a IFComp game and submit that as your Carnival post.

I also noticed the Instapundit linked October’s Carnival, so I’m sure the participants will see an uptick in their traffic today (I know I am). It’s a little late but better late than never. Glenn Reynolds is a blogging machine, I have no idea how he can keep up with all he does. Thanks for the link, Insta! (Is that his first blog name?)

Also, we’re still looking for new volunteers for Carnival Hosts! The Game Chair has stepped up to the plate for December, will your blog be next?

I missed the chance to join this month’s Roundtable Discussion, but Corvus has the goods at his site.

In the mail

I was sent a review copy of Smartbomb : The Quest for Art, Entertainment, and Big Bucks in the Videogame Revolution by Heather Chaplin and Aaron Ruby. I’ve only had time to read the introduction but so far it looks interesting. It comes out in a couple weeks, so hopefully I’ll have written some form of a review by then. Stay tuned!

You can find more info about the book and its authors at their website: Smartbomb

What I’m playing

I like hearing what other games people are playing. Every week I look forward to Evil Avatar’s “Weekend Gamer” to read what the current gaming zeitgeist is (right now it appears to be Shadow of the Colossus). It puts a human touch on our collective gaming hobby. It’s good to see that other people are enjoying similar games and someone always mentions an older classic that brings back good memories.

I’ve done a “What I’m playing” a few times here on the blog. I’d like to do it more often. I’d also love to hear from readers what they’re playing.

Anway, on to what I’m actually playing. I’ve jumped back into Guild Wars. I’m getting used to the interface and reacquainted with my skills. My Necro/Mesmer just hit level 20 and I’m getting close to ascending. It’s good to be back into the swing of things and the lack of paying a monthly fee has freed me from the shackles of feeling guilty if I’m not playing every day.

I’m also playing Resident Evil 4, trying to get 5 stars on each level in the Mercenaries mini-game. I can’t get enough of that game. It’s challenging but hardly ever frustrating. My current favorite character is Hunk (pictured, sort of) and his neckbreaker is devastating. I’d like to go back and beat the main game on the hard difficulty. There are two months of releases left this year and it doesn’t look like any titles will be unseating RE4 as Game of the Year. Why hasn’t Capcom capitalized on the success of RE4 and released all the Gamecube Resident Evil titles (remakes and ports) in one big compilation? I’d be all over that for Christmas.

Finally, I’ve been playing a lot of Advanced Wars on the DS. This is a great game. How great? This great. That’s all I have to link about that.

So that’s what keeps me busy. What about you?

Buckeye Blogging, Week #8 (5-2)

Poor Indiana. They’ve been the Big Ten’s doormat in football for a long time. OSU hasn’t lost to them in (now) the last thirteen attempts. That’s not an Indiana slump, it’s futility. Nevertheless, under first year coach Terry Hoeppner, they’re playing very un-Indiana-like. They were 4-2 going into Saturday’s game and were playing decent football. Honestly, though, no one gave them a snowball’s chance.

OSU was heavily favored and pretty much dominated the whole game. Sure, there were flashes of good play by Indiana (the stripping of Ted Ginn Jr. comes to mine), but they were just overmatched. The defense flexed its considerable muscles, holding IU to a paltry 113 yards offense. The Buckeyes offense had a usual Indiana-effort, racking up 464 yards. Not too shabby. Everyone looked good on both sides of the ball and the game was pretty ho-hum. The game was never in question.

But the officiating?! Holy crap on a stick, this is one of the worst officiated games I’ve witnessed in years. It’s unbelievable how many bad calls were made and how many obvious calls were missed. The aforementioned Ginn fumble was a bad no-call. His forward progress had obviously been stopped but the whistle was never blown. Bad mistake. On IU’s kick-off, D’Andrea called for a fair-catch and then muffed the kick-off, the whistle was blown entirely too early and IU was robbed of a turnover. Even when they went to instant-replay, Indiana was hosed on a nice shoe-string catch that was overturned. Huh? And the most egregious call? After Ted Ginn took a kick-off 95+ yards to the house a flag was thrown. The call? A personal foul, a hit to a “defenseless player”. That is the biggest joke of a call I’ve ever heard. If you are on the playing field and you are wearing PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT, you are not defenseless. And what are you doing to qualify being “defenseless”? Tieing your shoes? Picking up the tee? What a joke.

In the end, OSU wasn’t perfect but still laid the wood to an overmatched Indiana. Go Bucks!