Monday, 10 August 2015

True Detective - S2 E8 - Omega Station

The remaining crew plot their escape but there are still loose ends to be tied as the net closes around them...

Spoilers after the jump

Saturday, 8 August 2015

UnREAL Season 1 in review

As a watcher of the Bachelor and being familiar with the way in such that type of show is produced, I was quick to pick up on UnREAL when it was first put out there fully expecting to be the only one watching. Somehow it became a cult hit - relatively speaking at least, it's still just a Lifetime show. I'm not entirely convinced it's quite as good as its media darling status proclaims it though.

It's fun to watch and I will definitely be looking out for it next year as it has been confirmed as renewed for a second season. The performances were also okay but I definitely felt the plotting was haphazard and the characterization a little inconsistent. More thoughts after the jump.

Monday, 3 August 2015

True Detective - S2 E7 - Black Maps and Motel Rooms

The detectives flee into hiding following the orgy. Meanwhile, Semyon attempts to get to the bottom of his financial collapse.

Spoilers after the jump.

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Shenmue 3 update and The Bachelorette Season 11 wrap-up

Just one Shenmue update of note and then I will have some thoughts on the recently concluded season of the Bachelorette. Why? Well, because I can.

It's now more or less certain that there will be Paypal fund for donations to continue to the Shenmue 3 Project. While I'm of course in favor of Yu Suzuki having the money to make his vision a reality, I do carry a wariness over this kind of thing. It's certainly a less open process than Kickstarter or other public funding sites and it's not incumbent on the team to reveal how much they are making.

I certainly think it would be naive to just blindly trust them, especially considering they will never disclose what other sources of funding they are receiving and how they are being applied. I already wrote a post regarding these frustrations of mine about a month ago so there is no need to rehash it right now. With that said, when the fund is officially set up, I will post the link here and wish them luck.

Bachelorette musings after the jump.

Monday, 27 July 2015

True Detective - S2 E6 - Church in Ruins

Velcoro relapses while Frank is doing his job for him and Bezzerides infiltrates a sex party with mixed results.

Spoilers after the jump.

Saturday, 25 July 2015

Shenmue 3: News and notes a week on

Just a short post more to force myself to keep abreast of Shenmue-verse news than anything else. First to note something a few people mentioned to me about how the exclusive original watch and jacket offered as rewards on the Kickstarter had actually been reserved but the buyer backed out at the last minute most probably because he had no intention of buying it in the first place. I just assume it was a guy, sorry for being sexist. Anyway I'm not too bothered by it because now if they so need, the team can auction them off and likely get more than what they were being offered for since it seems like there are a lot of wealthy lunatics hardcore, loyal fans.

The Kickstarter ended with a statement from Yu Suzuki thanking the fans for their support. According to him he "will listen to all of you to make Shenmue III even better" which I hope to God is false because 95% of the time fan ideas invariably makes everything worse because fans glorify stuff that doesn't have any place forming a core basis of a consumer product. How I Met Your Mother became an abysmal show when Barney became the focus of every episode. I like Mayumi but I bet following her around as she studies languages probably wouldn't make a great game. Ok, actually, I bet it would.

More notes after the jump.

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

True Detective - S2 E5 - Other Lives

Time has passed since the Vinci shootout and everyone is struggling to move forward in their new realities.

Spoilers after the jump.

Saturday, 18 July 2015

Shenmue 3: Kickstarter ends with a flourish

So I don't think congratulations are in order to Yu Suzuki and Ysnet since the goal was already hit a month ago but what the hell, I'll offer them anyway. Picking up a good head of steam in the last week, the Kickstarter campaign ended up making $6.3m, more than half of what Suzuki allegedly needs to truly make the game he wants and enough to ensure there will be legendas em Portugues. This apparently broke the record for a campaign in the video games category although as much as Shenmue is a niche title, it's not exactly some small indie passion project either. No need to rehash all of that though as we will never get answers about any of it.

At some point it seems as though at some point during the celebration last night, Paypal as an option to continue funding the game was confirmed. A little murky about how it will work but if people want to contribute, I hope it's worth your while. I personally feel I put enough down in my pledge. There have to be other backers. There have to be. My hope is for Shenmue 3 to exceed expectations and for Ysnet not to have to return to that well for Shenmue 4. I know there are a lot of obsessives out there but I think it would lead to diminishing returns in good will.

I see from comments the perpetual victims are out in force accusing Kotaku and others of running hate crusades against Shenmue which is as ridiculous as it gets. I wonder about the mentality of people who get so invested in something they lose their minds to the extent they are seeing conpiracies and inventing stories where Nintendo paid off a journalist on a business website because they were afraid of a niche fifteen year-old game. One of the things I worry about with Shenmue 3 is, 'where will I find the time to play it?' I don't think these MENSAs have the same issues. The ironic thing about me whining about these people is I'm about to do a lot of bitching in this column coming up that I'm about to spend an hour writing. I must just be in a mood.

After the jump, I break down the rewards.

Monday, 13 July 2015

True Detective - S2 E4 - Down Will Come

Semyon attempts to reclaim his criminal empire. Bezzerides and Woodrugh are each dealing with personal problems but a possible breakthrough in the case leads to a raid.

Spoilers after the jump.

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Which do I value more, Shenmue or Shenmue II?

Spoiler: I value Shenmue more than Shenmue II and will follow with a brief explanation as to why, but I am also interested in what y'all have to say about, especially if you dissent.WHen I've gone and looked about in discussion threads on Shenmue 500k and so on, nearly all of the talk regarding past games tend to center around Shenmue II and I wonder if that is recency bias (so to speak) or if there is something else at play.

Also, thanks to Alimn who for some unknown reason mentioned the Hazuki Dojo when he was receiving some award for Shenmue excellence or something like that and thus got me thinking I had better work on some actual Shenmue content here despite all of the other nonsense going on.

With the aid of some uh, interesting to say the least rewards being added, the Kickstarter has sputtered back to life with almost $1m being tacked on to total collected in the last week. With just over a week left to run, $5m looks like it should now be achievable. Over the life of the project, $10m is a realistic target with subscriptions and other forms of donations though considering the nature of some of those rewards I can't help but feel he may as well as just gone and got the money from a private developer. I think I will hold off to see if there are any more developments before diving in on the rewards, so look for that in a couple of weeks.

Monday, 6 July 2015

True Detective - S2 E3 - Maybe Tomorrow

Bezzerides and Woodrugh investigate the Mayor of VInci while Semyon's downward spiral continues. Meanwhile it turns out the headline actor of the show was not killed off in the second episode after all.

Spoilers after the jump.

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Spring TV Recap

I was thinking on it and thought that as a matter of public service I just simply had to give you my thoughts on the television shows I'd been watching in the spring of this year. So any show that wrapped in April or later gets a mention here. There were a bunch of good shows, one really outstanding one and one chin-restingly terrible. My overall thoughts off the bat are that I've probably watched too much TV because I can see too much of this stuff coming before it happens. The difference is in how fun the thing is to watch.

Reviews on concluded seasons with possible spoilers after the jump.

Monday, 29 June 2015

True Detective -S2 E2 - Night Finds You

The detectives begin what appears to be an ill-fated investigation into the murder of Ben Casperre while Semyon scrambles to solidify his position. The episode ends in shocking fashion leading the heads of Internet pop culture writers everywhere to explode as though having been sprayed with buckshot.

Spoilers after the jump.

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Shenmue 3: Some quick thoughts on the updated stretch goals

I think it's obvious at this point that the Shenmue 3 Kickstarter campaign will struggle to reach $5m let alone $10m, so it's baffling to me that the stretch goals have been updated again with a new $11m target and a mysterious $???m goal with a perplexing ??? reward that is sure to have the lunatics frothing at the mouth.

Thursday, 25 June 2015

True Detective - S2 E1 - The Western Book of the Dead

An all new season of True Detective introduces us to four new leads and a whole lotta laughs... or not.

Brief thoughts and spoilers after the jump.

Monday, 22 June 2015

Shenmue 3: It's not unreasonable to have questions

The disclaimer before I get started here is that I really am looking forward to this game being released. I always try to find the proper perspective. I am prone to thin slicing and throwing out hot takes from time to time. I know what I am doing and I pick my targets carefully. Yesterday, I had a piece all typed up and ready to go regarding David Thier's article about the Shenmue 3 Kickstarter and the unhinged 'fan' reaction to it. However, I am always more interested in getting it right than being right. In the past week since the announcement I had been very busy and hadn't had time to sift through all things Shenmue so I owed it to myself and any passers-by to do my due diligence.

After reading and watching everything of note and double checking to ensure I had not missed any relevant quotes, I came to essentially the same conclusion I had already formed; there are far more questions than answers when it comes to Shenmue 3, particularly in regard to how the project is being funded.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Shenmue 3: Why being stuck in a cave is a lot like being shivved by ten of your so-called brothers

After Shenmue 3 was officially announced on Monday night, I wanted to take a little while to compose my thoughts regarding the subject I haven't really had time for that however so what the hell, I'm just going to dive right in and ramble on as I was formerly accustomed.

I was told a few weeks back to expect something at E3, but brushed it off with my tried and tested line, "I'll believe it when I see it" as I had the previous ten plus years. That possibly contributed to me not utterly losing my shit the way everyone else has seemed to over the past few days but I appreciate their enthusiasm, it is not misplaced. My reaction was far more simple. It was I thought, to quote Colin Cowherd's handy new catchphrase, 'BOUT TIME! #BoutTime