Thursday, 23 January 2014

Emergency PSA: Hearthstone is the worst game you'll keep playing.

We interrupt the intended broadcast of a "Why Man of Steel sucked balls and MoS 2 will continue the tradition" to bring you this emergency Public Service Announcement regarding the fact that Hearthstone has gone into Open Beta. The following announcement will be Senior Cynic Aaron Chapman telling you why you should avoid playing Hearthstone at all cost, lest it consumes your very soul. Now joining him live in the field.

Thank you very much for that opening paragraph, now time to cut this joke short. 

So on Monday you will have the Man of Steel article (we are trying to run a "schedule" for how we upload articles...Radical, and doomed to failure, I know), but I feel given that the Hearthstone Beta just went from "closed" to "open" that this is as timely an article as it will ever be...And also a warning. Because Hearthstone is terrible, its aggressively awful on a few very specific points, its malignant and it goes against most of the things I dislike in game design...And yet I like it enough that I can't stop playing it.

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

I Finally Found Evidence Of A Children's Film Written By An Alcoholic. Turns Out It's By Chandler

Recently I stumbled upon a film called The Real Macaw. It was during an evening where I was drunk with a few friends and felt that a terrible children's film might be a good thing to take out all my deep seated frustration on, by criticising a work that hadn't been relevant for almost longer than the period that I had been able to think that it was terrible. In my search of bad nineties children's films I stumbled upon The Real Macaw. A film that had surprisingly turned out to be have been co-written by Matthew Perry.

“Hang on”, I thought. Hadn't Matthew Perry been an alcoholic for a lot of the nineties and could this have fallen into that sweet spot of blitzed out bliss, during which he'd managed to write a children's film about a talking parrot that had been friends with a group of pirates and had then gone on to tell a young boy years after the location of a secret buried treasure. Yes, this seems like the kind of a thing that an in deep alcoholic would write.

Monday, 20 January 2014

Remembering 2013: Frozen: Film of the Year, because why not?

Now you might remember for the closing of 2012 we had an award ceremony for all the good films that came out that year. Well, you know what, 2013 wasn't a good year for films (Sans the Oscar-bait which because of living in Britain we largely don't get until 2014 anyway) and so I don't think it deserves a list. The Hobbit 2 failed to inspire the same delight as the first. Literally only two people I know bothered seeing Woody Allen's Blue Jasmine so for all its charm and grace then I literally cannot place it in a spectrum because no-one has mentioned it. I had to watch Gravity not-at-Cinemas so I feel the amazing experience everyone else witnessed I missed out on.

My Prediction (Fuck Bono)

Man of Steel, World War Z, Elysium, The Wolverine, Monsters University, Iron Man 3, Great Gatsby, Die Hard 5, Lone Ranger, Riddick and After Earth were all either disappointing, horrifically disappointing or as terrible as expected. Even Pacific Rim had major, major issues. Then you had works like Now You See Me, the 2nd Hunger Games and The Worlds End which seemed okay to begin with but fell apart rapidly in your mind the more you thought about them (Man of Steel has the dubious honour of fitting into both categories, as you'll see next article).

And don't get me started on this pile of absolute drivel. 

I genuinely thought I hadn't seen that many films this year when I started writing this, but as I went over my notes I realised I had...and they were mostly completely forgettable.

Which brings me to the hardest point I've had to make in my journalistic (Hah) career so far.