Monday, June 27, 2011

Comedy and the Internet

*Just on a personal note, yeah, I know I didn't post last week.  It happens sometimes, especially with celebrating my son's birthday (he finally hit the terrible two's), and well, other stuff as well.  Since I was busy with that, I figure I write up a post that might show a little insight on what makes me tick.  And what better way to to do that than a synopsis of when I'm at rest, calm and relaxed.  This is what I do when I'm away from all the hub-bub of the day-to-day from working and family life, enjoy.*

Oh how I love wasting time (and bandwidth) crawling to all my local haunts for a good laugh. We all do cause if we don't have the time to unwind we'll all go friggin nuts. It seems that nowadays to succeed in comedy on the Internet is more than just telling a good joke, it needs to be visually appealing. After all, it is an escape from the doldrums of the mundane. It could be as simple as some stupid CG or a clip on what they're referencing to as extravagant as a full-on onslaught of a performance. It's dependent on whom is presenting. And for internetphyls like myself, it's a great wealth of hilarity. And I'm not just talking about fails, I'm talking about those who on whatever periodic basis shell out the laughs for us. Now I'll try to stay off the whole YouTube thing because that's just a pool of stuff, I'll stick to stuff that is directed to a self hosted site if possible and barrage with a crap-ton of links to them if you might not already frequent. So here's my synopsis on the state of the funny shit that keeps me coming back for more. 

The first on this rant is Cinemassare. James Rolfe and Mike Matai seem to just shell out interesting stuff everyday. Sometimes two or three times a day. And with my schedule they're feed is a godsend cause sometimes I might miss out on something and it'll be two or three days before I get to it. Most noteable for their Angry Video Game Nerd videos, oddly enough that's not what brought me to them all so many years ago. It was a YouTube clip in reference to one of their earlier "You Know What's Bullshit?" skits back in 2007. Followed the URL at the end of the credits and it's was like a drug, I was hooked. Found other stuff they kept on adding and I'm glad to see it grow as a phenomenon it has become. That, and it doesn't help that I had a soft spot for anything from Philly. And it seems like most juggernauts, it broke ground for other Internet haunts of mine such as ScrewAttack and That Guy With The Glasses (which I also frequent) and all others from association of them. Everything they touch is pure gold. Just spread a little of that love over to BootLeG is all I ask James. 

Another good waste of time is The Oatmeal. In the realm of webcomics they are Penny Arcade meets Far Side with a little bit of Office Space thrown into the mix. It's not about gaming or other nerdy stuff (ok, they're nerdy stuff) but it's mainly a satiric look on people that are web-smart to aide those that aren't. And cats, some sort of weird fixation about cats, and other animals. (Note to self, don't ever move to Seattle). It's a breath a humor and fresh air after a long days work that someone just chalked up all the funny and fucked up crap in a day and put it on a panel or two of "well, it could've been worse..." And now I feel like punching a dolphin.

Another occasional place to browse is clean comic Tim Hawkins. This guy is living proof that you don't have to be foul to be funny. A lot of us could learn from him, especially me. He's essentially the anti-Bob Saget, not that there's anything wrong about Bob Saget but you can only hear him talk about sticking his pinky up Kimmy Gibler's butt so many times. Tim offers a rare brand of comedy that once dominated the scene and it's only overshadowed by the charisma he put into his act. He's mainly on YouTube but his latest videos and all of his music videos are on his site and are worth watching over and over. I even go as far as buying the DVDs for all the stuff that he didn't put up on the Internet to view. You'll thank me later I'm sure. 

Now as a gamer, you would think that I would look for all my gaming news on G4 or IGN. Nope, although I do follow IGN on my Facebook; but all things gaming my first destination would be to ScrewAttack 99% of the time. This is a great example of what a group of people that are passionate (and nerdy) can accomplish if given the opportunity. Daily there's stuff added on that is related to the gaming industry in a witty and often comedic stance. Keeping to short media clips of news, reviews, and other random stuff to keep you coming back for more. And as an added bonus, they recognize that they wouldn't be where they are if it wasn't for the fans that log on everyday. They even let their subscribers (it's free to sign up BTW) submit user created content and even profile some of the best weekly for all to gawk at. It literally wreaks of awesomeness. You've might've noticed me talk or referenced them a few times on the blog. So give them a shot if you haven't already. 

One final site that I frequent is That Guy With The Glasses and pretty much anything affiliated with Channel Awesome. This think tank of, well, awesomeness, is a cornucopia of all geeky, funny, and WTF. Doug Walker and his many personas like The Nostalgia Critic and Chester A. Bum headlines the brood of chaos and hilarity that is shelled daily and the various contributors such as Spoony, The Game Heroes, The Nostalgia Chick, Benzie, Angry Joe, Linkara, MarzGurl, and a whole lot of others that would take forever and a day to go though. It's a helluva site to check out to see all the content that is produced. Like I said, some of these I probably wouldn't have known if they weren't referred from other sites like Cinemassare so I hope that this is an opportunity for me to pay it forward. 

Also just as a notable mention, you should check out Stupid Game Show Answers. Even though it's not updated on a regular basis, it's still full of gems and other coolness. That and we all know my addition to gameshows. But as of now I'm gonna get the hell off of this and go to another place of humor and stupidity, as if my blog isn't full of that already. 

BootLeg sampler.. signing out...

*No dolphins were harmed during the creation of this blog post.*

Sunday, June 12, 2011

My thoughts on E3 2011

Once again another E3 have gone and passed and once again it had it share of surprises and awesomeness. Kind of a mook point reviewing what happened since like everyone and their mom had done it already. So I'm not gonna review it, instead I'm gonna go Monday-morning-quarterback on this one and inform you what I thought was cool as a fanboy. Because that's what I am, that and I'm pretty bummed not having the means for going to LA to experience it firsthand. So here's my E3 2011 rant. 

Might as well get what's on every gamers mind out of the way first. The Wii U; WOW!!! What can't I say about it. It was all the buzz from everyone there during it's reveal and all I wish was that I was there to demo it. First the controller for it is a friggin tablet (once again Nintendo thinking out of the box from their competitors) which looks kinda intuitive but manageable I suppose in time. The console will be 1080p ready which is about time for them to step up to the plate graphic-wise with their competition is great thing. Also, it's Wii backwards compatible so those who still play (like myself and my kids) can ease into it. My main two qualms for it is that it won't upscale current Wii titles to HD which isn't really much for me cause it was a standard-def console; and in that spirit I hope it doesn't pull a Sony in removing the backward compatibility for it. That is what turned me off of a PS3 for the longest time. 

And speaking of Sony, their new handheld the Vita striking a lot of buzz, especially since it's been leaked for what seems like the better part of the year about design concepts and being part cellphone. One good thing I can say is thank goodness they're two thumbsticks. One thing I didn't like was the carrier they choose for their 3G access, why AT&T, why?!? At least they have a wifi only model and maybe someone will find a way to jailbreak it for other carriers. But for now, we'll take it as is, a not so hidden secret. Also, I'm glad that they discussed their security issue, way to own up for your mistakes, and I'm being honest about that.  It was a good show on their part with those being the big points for them.

And to conclude the big three, Microsoft, well, it was pretty much not much of anything to leave me wanting to remember them.  I mean, they had Halo 4 and that was it, blech...  I really wasn't impressed, AGAIN, this year from them.  It sucked and it was more or less a time-waster for me to wait for Sony to start.

But E3 is not about consoles and their advancements, it's about the games.  And boy were there games.  Zelda Skyward Sword looks great on the WiiU and the fact that they're hyping the 25th anniversary of it was great in all the stuff they planned on doing for it, such as Four Swords for free on the DSi later this year.  Street Fighter X Tekken makes me want to get back to fighters again, and that they're going to be a Final Fantasy XIII-2, I just hope that it's not anything like X-2 where it kind of went way off tangent from the original story (which I'm still playing, XIII not X, I've beaten that already). Oh, and Mario, the overflow of Mario titles, it gives me such joy to bring them back.

So that was my impressions on E3 2011.  From the TV in my living room to the Twitter feeds of all those whom I followed, and everything in between, that what I got from this.  Pretty damn exciting if I don't say so myself.  Until next year for E3 for more games, I'll just keep posting more random shit out of my mouth and into the blog.

BootLeG sampler.. signing out...

Sunday, June 5, 2011

The purpose of the Gaming Con

This is where I try to separate the fan boy inside of me from the critic and present the actual reason why we have them. Keyword in that sentence is TRY. Just in time for E3, right?! The thing about them is that it generates excitement from everyone; from people in the gaming industry to fanboys to media outlets a plenty. It's a orgy of bright lights, loud noises, and cos-players. No matter how it's diced, I love it. But in the end, what is it all about? Here's my feeble attempt to make something out of it. Now to make justice, there are multiple cons for multiple purposes. And to give them all justice I'll just have to generalize then as best as I can. Of course I'm gonna give some examples of each generalization but it won't be of each con. That's just too damn much. 

There's really two types of cons to consider, the ones that are for people in the industry to showcase their wares, and the ones that are for the fans that truly appreciate the work done. Guess which one I'm more in favor of. Let's get the industry con under wraps first. In essence it's core is for those who are within the industry to showcase their new wares to their peers and see among them is top dog. This is where CES and the likes are more prominent in that aspect. More the suit and tie aspect of the presenters and the viewers. The only flashy stuff in view is mainly the products and maybe some showgirls to model in front to draw the crowd. Ok, that I like... But as far as it's intentions I respect it. Their good in the aspect of getting to the root of why were all there ogling over all the shiny objects and pretty colors. That was what E3 was in it's infancy and it still retains such in their press conferences and product debuts for reviewers and analysts in the industry. But once you get to the showroom floor, it's a whole other story. 

Now here's where I get my shit-eating grin on my face (and have a hard time getting rid of it). The Fan-Cons. They are what we the general public are able to attend (after the cost of admission) and have fun being fanboys. It's a gamer-orgasm taken form. Full of people wanting to see the next big thing and willing to wait in lines for hours to do such. It's where situations like LAN parties might engulf the patrons and cos-players are the beautiful people. Events like PAX, TooManyGames, and the open showroom floor of E3 are prime examples of such. It's where the nerdy and the chic are married into one helluva experience. 

Now to make sense of how can the two coexist. Without the public wanting to display their allegiance to the developers games there wouldn't be games for us to have. And trust me we wouldn't want another 1983 again would we?!? But the whole point of conventions are to be among peers to compare their preverbal penis sizes (and nine out of ten Nintendo comes out on top; no pun intended if you read into that too much like I did). It's kinda hard to conduct business when you have hundreds of lunatic fans breathing on your shoulders. Thankfully conventions like the Tokyo Game Show and E3 are here, they're the closest things we have to marry them together. I just wish they're were more of them, but then again they wouldn't be as special. And I'm pretty damn glad to have them that way. It's like Christmas in June for us gamers. As for PAX's and the CES's, I'll respect your separation and enjoy the presences of them in their own rights.

BootLeG sampler.. signing out...

P.S.  Look out for the next post and tweets on my thoughts on E3 2011.