Saturday 10 February 2024

This entry lay dormant since September

It's been a while! 2024, here we go!

I just finished Return to Monkey Island, and it's pretty darn good. Felt a lot, and decided it's time to dump parts of my brain here. I then found this dusty old draft, which I'll get through first:

Mando, Boba, Obi, Ahsoka, all best enjoyed on second order to protect thyself. And not in the intended way, I'm supposing. I recommend EFAP in small doses. Then there's the hidden and tucked away Andor, which is really good. I finally felt some things in a Star Wars setting since the OT. Didn't much like "six years, hah-hah" and "Tungstoid steel" (I cringed into a ball), but that's sci-fi I guess. No darths, no lightsabers, no jedi force push or mind reading (if I remember correctly), just lots of struggling characters that use their noggin' to various extents. Nice

Going through Return to Monkey Island. Grumpy Gamer sure is an international treasure, and Dave Grossman and the team too. Also, Yahtzee, you're not, grow up.

Well that was all I had drafted, I'll continue with the game. Maybe the best in the series? Art style is what it is. I liked it, it's better than all the triple-A bloomy raytraced gurgle. Sharp with smooth and dynamic animations, and the designs fit the personalities for me. Prepare your pitchforks: It looks better than Curse. The music is very soothing. LuChuck's fiery side is a little tame, but overall the voice work is spot on. And the ending. Reminds me of Firewatch, in that one camp hates that kind of ending, the other camp loves it. You don't slay the dragon, you don't get the girl because in this case you're already with her, everything is not wrapped up neatly with bowties, meaning all characters actually live on and are in fact less disposable. Come to think of it, it also reminds me of the final ending of The Wire, and y'all know how much I lurv that. What was expected? Finding the secret, or not, so that there will be more sequels? Sailing into the sunset with Elaine (well that's an alternative ending), with Murray being evil which is sooo cute? Have a party with the cool characters while the others are redeemed or end up on Terror Island? Those final seconds of Guybrush going into his inner self, either enjoying the moment or still dreaming of that other life, was an amazing end. Now, everybody, LEAVE IT AT THAT. Feel a little, think a little.

My favourite part? There were some good jokes, loved the mop tree gag, but no. Standing in the middle of the street, choosing to say "I feel better just talking to you." "Me too." It's weird how the years make a simple exchange like that in a slapstick game mean so much. But the developers knew what they were doing :) Top game.

Oppenheimer... Was ok. I preferred Veritasium's 30 min yt-docu.

Started watching the X Files from the beginning. Wow it's super 90's and the main actors are a lot worse than I remember... But it's still fun, government conspiracies and aliens will never not give.

Oh right, the one Ring has finally been cast into Mount Doom, and there's still enough for a whole book left. Wowee.

Celtic Dueling Violins is slowly getting faster (huhu). So much fun.

Hum, what else. Triangle of Sadness is fun. A few scenes are a bit much. But I'll remember it for a long time, especially the ending with that music.

I'm sure there was a lot more going on, but I try to cover what suits this place the most (: Let's see how long the next one takes.

Monday 17 July 2023

Get Psyched, again

Wait, that's another game. Anyway, I'm a bit bummed out now that I didn't back Psychonauts 2, because what an absolutely amazing game that is. Sequels to legendary games scare me, but Double Fine did it. Overall, the first game is still the pinnacle, but I have almost nothing to complain about with the follow-up. Ehh, what am I saying, I have to nag about something: the ending feels very disconnected from the beginning, the teenagers disappear rather quickly and are replaced by the old geezers, and overall the "sentimental" angle goes on for too long. Everything else is tip top. Both games super highly recommended, even though they are super annoying 3D platformers :p Sound effects and music are my notification sounds now.

Tenet is great. Finally, a good film by Nolan! *hides*

Have slowly gone through Tokyo Vice and just finished the first season. Editing isn't great, I think a few characters are stupid and annoying, and there's too much grown-up hugging. But it has its moments, pretty much exclusively with the Japanese characters.

Why was there so much hoolabaloo about Succession? It was fine and snappy, but did very little for me. I'm not into money and power plays. All I remember from the infamously poppy dialogue is "Hi! Hey! Hi. Wow. You dig dickbutt?" Bah.

The Deadwood film is ok, and compared to the series it's just meh. The dialogue and delivery is so forced and cronge, and imho so is the overall story and new character plots. The series is excellent as it is, even with its abrupt end.

Saw the Boss live! Was never a fan, and imho I'm not a fan of the studio albums, but the show was great fun. The highlights were definitly when "Born in the USA" and "Born to Run" came up back to back, plus his new melancholic acoustic song to round off the evening. Brucey is old, but Brucey rocks, a lot. Psychonauts 2 is orders of magnitude more value for the money though.

I need to fold some stuff, just need to find a free evening to do it. First my own plans, then some super old requests.

I've had some other things bouncing around my head, but they've bounced out I suppose. Until next time, enjoy high summer!

Tuesday 11 April 2023

z0ze all the way to egg time

Wow I've been slacking, no good.

2023, another not so interesting number, except when spelled z0ze it reminds me of Soos and that makes me happy.

Let's see, I'm still going slowly through bookie LotR, and so are Frodo and Sam. They just passed Minas Morgul, and although I like the depiction in the films there's something special about reading about it in a book. A sickly light with windows as portals into the darkness. And the ringwraith boss doesn't pose on his dragon, he fronts the troops like a proper boss. I'd love to watch the super duper extended versions.

Since I got HBO Max I've watched quite a few things, with some radical takes. I'll start with something pretty crazy about True Detective that will put me in grave danger: s1 is aesthetically great with great pacing, great acting, great everything filmsy wordsy whatever, but s2, as kooky as it is, is better. Yep, I'm officially a dead man. I will not even explain my take (:

Finished Silicon Valley. It did indeed lose steam and Jarald got too much free reign, and although I didn't like where it went overall the last scene is pretty good. First couple of seasons are solid.

Oh right Dune. So easy to forget :p I'm already a dead man so whatever. Not at all waiting eagerly for the continuation. Fine but meh. The Spicediver edit is better.

The Suicide Squad is pretty much where DC should not go. I see why they do, trying to jazz up their darkness, but I'm getting old and grumpy and they should not do what they're doing.

Paddington was a nice surprise. I always thought it'd be garbage, I liked it a lot.

Batman. What can be said that hasn't been said about the lunatic billionaire that dresses up as a bat and fights crime with his gizmos and fists. Serious notes aside, was fine, nowhere near the Joker though. That, is what DC should do.

Tenet is back! On my to-watch list.

I feel like I'm missing something, but whatever, films and series are not that important in the end. Ah yes, house of the dragonses, HBO has recommended ep 3 or 4 for a couple of months now.

Regarding games, Senua is pretty amazing. Unfortunately the fighting, although starting great, loses steam fast and ends up being a game of patience. I need to cross the bridge at some point, ie I've only played 3-4 hours.

I'm getting more fluent with Gymnopedie 1, but considering I don't have the piano at my usual place it obviously takes a while. Need to pick up my violin more, need more gusto.

Alright enough, gotta work!

Sunday 18 December 2022

Media dump

Had a flu, was difficult to focus on work, so I consumed some media. Some time ago I watched the first episode of Rings of Power with some friends. My initial impression was it was boring, vapid, and an excuse for random people to make something for a rabid fan-base. Pointless, esp. considering the quality of the original lore and the Jackson trilogy. So rather than watching any more I've relied on EFAP to fill me in. How, seriously how, can series like this keep getting made? The money, the material, the talents, and the best they can cobble together is this? I'm fed up with GoT for various reasons, but the dragon show seems to have been ok. Oh right, one good thing came of this atrocity, I started reading the books again. Merry and Pippin just met Treebeard. So cute.

Finally played Mirror's Edge. Wow, what a curse-fest that was. Kinda pretty, the music was great. The plot, the Battlefield control feel, the fighting, the "BAM didn't see that coming, did you?! Reload!" sequences, made me so incredibly, amazingly angry. Maybe wasn't healthy, I was supposed to relax to recover from my flu. Fortunately it only took 5h to beat and I won't look back, but I'll put on the OST at some point, I'm sure.

Then I found two short puzzlers in my weird library: Puzzle Agent 2 and Gorogoa. Pretty sure I've written about Puzzle Agent 1 earlier, funny little mystery with simple self-contained puzzles scattered throughout. This installment continues and resolves the mystery. If you like some silly with a fun story, recommended. Gorogoa is something very different, reminds me of the experimental games in the glorious 90s. Interesting, felt a bit inconsistent sometimes as to the available actions. Imho the best parts were some of the poignant parts of the story, immediately sentimental somehow.

Will go to work tomorrow to pick something up, but probably won't work close to other people. I feel fine, but I'd rather not risk anybody's Christmas vacation, plus there's more diseases ravaging our society out there... I'm lucky to have such a remote-able job. Ait, time to read a little!

Wednesday 5 October 2022

New book

Rather than turning a new page I've turned to a new book. It's so nice to not work in a cave every day, although I cannot say I like the office yet since I'm still looking for an apartment... I have the office key at least. Trudging through a stack of papers, I feel so rusty.

Been holding off on saying anything about a 1.5 year old hobby: piano playing! As usual I spent a lot of time digging, in this case probably for more than half a year, looking for an alternative to the violin. I really love the trumpet and like the idea of using my lungs to produce sound, but it's so loud and gross with all the spit. I had a full trumpet setup in the basket in an online shop and hovered the buy-button, but changed my mind. So, went for a white Roland FP30X + DP10 instead, great kit. It has a less "dreamy" sound than what's offered by other brands and I prefer it that way. I somehow felt all demos resembled real piano recordings more than the others that sounded a lot more repetitive and synthesised. Supposedly the action is more accurate too, but I know nothing. Each to their own! My solution is to not care about the gear any more and just play! Did a lot of exercises and very simple songs in the beginning (job + lots of hobbies...), but this summer I learnt all of Minuet and finally went from 20% to 95% of Gymnopedie 1, my first milestone. Next will probably be Arabesque (it's better than Clair de Lune *hides*). Violin-wise I need to open up Sevcik 1 and torture myself, looking forward to that.

Regarding other GAS (no, not the natural kind, topic too flammable (I am (not) sorry)), I suddenly got curious about noise-cancelling true wireless earbuds *sigh*. Fortunately I'm happy with my el cheapo Logi m185, I'll prolly keep that for a long time, although I should have tried the model with the silent buttons. No I shouldn't have, forget!

I quit Netflix, for now. Hardly used it since I left Germany. Will get a cheap mobile contract instead, seems ubiquitous in Sweden with all the cool apps and networking.

Enough of this, gonna continue reading papers, my eyes are not burning yet -_-

EDIT 2022-10-10:Wait what, the game Routine is back?! 8D

Thursday 25 August 2022

Autumn peers through the key-hole

The new job is progressing, but it's not a straight line for the higher-ups. I sometimes feel like I get too much work-wise, but I suppose I've always paid back with decent work. People keep telling me to worry less... But I need to get an apartment fast :p

The move btw, oh wow, that was not fun. I hope I won't do that too often in the future. Some things are still not 100% resolved, but seem to be possible to do from abroad.

Stranger Things 4 was fine. The series will never reach season 1 quality again. To expand the story and wrap things up, everything happened because of a bad boy. Rather meh. Dare to be mystical. Some great moments, pleasant arcs, very pretty, with an overall simple plot. I'm sure I'll enjoy the last sprint to the end. But I've seen something else over the course of spring that I've enjoyed really, really a lot.

Gravity Falls. At least season 1, just finished it a few days ago. I knew absolutely nothing about it, someone close introduced it to me without spoilers. Even the theme song is dynamite. Amazing stuff, why can't there be more of this kind of visual entertainment? Watch it! I'm so glad I still have one more full season with proper closure, and no sequels, prequels, midquels, or whatever garbage that greedos squeeze out (and get paid for so it continues :/).

Saw the Atomium from a plane, that brought back some memories. We should build some "silly" monuments from time to time, it's very invigorating.

Working my way through Dune and Anna Karenina. I watched one of the fan re-edits of the unholy Lynch version of Dune just before starting the book (one day I'll see the Villeneuve version), and it sure is a kooky film, but the atmosphere and music are great. The book oscillates between being too simplistic while explaining the thoughts of main characters, to building a really great universe. Overall I'm enjoying it most of the time, but some parts I trudge through. Anna Karenina is certainly the better crafted work, but I'm getting overloaded by the fancy clothes and carnal desires. I'm also enjoying it, but in very different ways :)

Been looking at barefoot shoes in the last few months. I've been thinking for some years how uncomfortable and stupid many shoes, and how too extreme the Vibram 5-finger shoes are, then suddenly the more normal-looking alternatives popped up in a yt video (ooh I can learn things from there?!). Didn't pull the trigger yet, went from Vivo, to Merrell, to I don't remember the rest, to Freet, let's see if I dare to. Funny side-note, some very old sandals from Japan turned out to be Merrells with a Vibram sole. Sometimes, just sometimes, the world is small.

Right, I played violin on a beach! A rather stony one, with loud waves to mask the horror that I summon with my instrument. Recommended!

There's more rattling around inside my cage of dreams and fading memories, but some things I need to keep to myself ;)

EDIT 2022-08-26: For some reason I decided to keep Karate Kid in the background while doing some other things, and was wondering "why are the pupils taking off and putting on their bags before joining the crowd in school"? Oh wait... I cannot put words on my thoughts, it's just so bleak. How can anything justify that? Oh well, just needed that off my chest, I think there was a mention of this in my last post. Another thought, half a year of war and those news are creeping further and further down the papers. Gotta focus, but not forget.

Tuesday 14 June 2022

Crazy spring

Who could've thunk Covid would fizzle out and things would still be pretty bad?

Well, on a global scale anyway, with conflicts, insane inflation, a resurgence of anti gun violence which is somehow also fizzling out already in the newspapers, the surprise surge of travelers after covid etc.

Oh well, I'm almost out of this place for something new, some light! I'm so fed up and tired I only feel the excitement sometimes, but it's sufficient. So many things to take care of though, ugh. Around 40 days of leave from last year + this year up until the end of August, neat, almost 2 months of paid leave :D

Somehow Stranger Things 4 passed me by, I heard about it somewhere in the background noise of an experimental campaign, I should give it a whirl. Oh right, work-related stuff. Two experiments went ok this time, although we're still far from any kind of pleasant or "pretty" operations. Joined a guided tour of the new Targethalle at FAIR afterwards. Cute, big shiny hall with many puddles of water, will be great.

I cannot really think of much that I'll miss after I've left. I thought maybe the beer, but I didn't have much at all lately. Maybe some of the artificial vistas, the many criss-crossing forest paths are quite convenient for small trips, but I prefer the wildy wildy of Sweden. The relatively inexpensive restaurants with pretty decent food, at least compared to regular Swedish restaurants, I might miss those.

Only took 3 months, and now maybe another 3, will be busy moving and figuring out what to do with lots of time on my hands :) (I have some nice travel plans already though!)