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Story Mash-Up! (whatcha reading/watching/playing/etc.)

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Laria's picture
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Joined: 06/28/2010

YH wrote:

Still breathin'.

Breathing's good. ^^

Playing Minecraft as well. Reading and watching nothing, which is quite a shame, now I think of it, since I actually have time. I want to see That Thing You Do! I hope our library (for books) has it, because a video library, or whatever you call it, is impossible to find these day.

Maybe I should continue The Voyage of the Beagle as well. I stopped because I had to study.

Jeroic's picture
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 This week, I reviewed a book, Dragon's Wild by the late Robert Aspirin:

http://jeroic9.livejournal.com/

I bought Metroid Other M on release day. I won't be able to actually play it for a week or two, but the purchase is still a means of showing my support for hardcore, plot-driven games on the Wii as often as they appear.

gro-dhal's picture
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Limited access to computers while I try to figure out how to get my hulking great PC from Hampshire to London without a car. So no games or watching of things.

I made up for that by reading Night Watch. Epic win. I haven't seen the film but it can only be a disappointment in comparison.

Astion's picture
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That book is win. Seriously one of Pratchett's best. Probably my favourite next to Monstrous Regiment and Pyramids.

I saw him on BBC HardTalk the other night. Such a shame about his Alzheimers.

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 I just read Cormac McCarthy's The Road. It was okay. A few too many blips that remind you you're just reading a book. 

Also, bought and started the new Metroid. Very much liking it so far.

gro-dhal's picture
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Astion wrote:

That book is win. Seriously one of Pratchett's best. Probably my favourite next to Monstrous Regiment and Pyramids.

I saw him on BBC HardTalk the other night. Such a shame about his Alzheimers.

Agreed on all counts, but I was talking about Night Watch/Nochnoi Dozor by Sergei Lukyanenko. Russian vampires and wizards and shit, drinking vodka and having barbecues on their days off.

Astion's picture
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So I just watched Eraserhead and ruined my future sleeping prospects.

Also, and relatedly, David Lynch's A Goofy Movie.

Jeroic's picture
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 http://jeroic9.livejournal.com/

There's my review of Metroid: Other M.

Note, every time I write that title I fail to capitalize at least one part of it then fix it before posting. 

gro-dhal's picture
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Astion wrote:

So I just watched Eraserhead and ruined my future sleeping prospects.

 

Hilarious film. Especially the dinner scene.

Jeroic's picture
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 Today I finished the Recollection trilogy and possibly the Didius Falco series. Both were kickass. Expect to see both simultaneously reviewed come Thursday. 

Fugu23's picture
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Le Dîner de cons.

I lol'd. Great little movie that almost feels like a well-orchestrated stage play, a feature-length skit that reminded me a lot of Death at a Funeral. Going to love matching it up with the English version on Thursday.

Od
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Astion wrote:

Mulholland Drive.

I don't know what the hell I just watched, but it was incredible.

I fell in love with both girls, so I knew they were only one. And that's all. There is no story. There is no point. There's only my relationship to the girls. Silencio.

I'm reading bits of Pale Fire, bits of the Hero w/ 1000 , and Black Spring.

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 http://jeroic9.livejournal.com/

 

My review of Lindsey Davis' Nemesis and Rooster Teeth Productions' Revelation. Loved both. Watch me gush, if it pleases you.

Fugu23's picture
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Minecraft is having a free weekend while the servers are down. However, by going in offline mode and selecting multiplayer, it's still possible to join a server.

I'll be opening up a server later today if anyone's interested. You can PM me if you want the IP and/or info about the game and stuff.

EDIT: Back online.

World Map

YH
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Joined: 06/28/2010

lol Hey, I can see my sandcastle from here!

Fugu23's picture
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Told you it was awesome. You can see your name in the sand too lol

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How is Minecraft? What I saw about the game is breaking blocks of wood, stone, or coal with your "hand." But, I wanna try it soon.

Astion's picture
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I have a friend who's been trying to get me to play it. Personally, I don't see the romance of the premise, which I understand to be "digging tunnels for fun".

 

Unrelated: I'm being sued! And guess what for: "Wasting our professional time". i.e., missing a meeting that I never RSVP'd to. Hilarious! :D

Fugu23's picture
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Minecraft is exactly the kind of game you shouldn't decide on before you play it. I've reccommended it to three people, all of whom were skeptic, and all of whom really enjoyed it. Basically, you're colonizing a world. Building stuff, exploring caves, killing enemies at night. Then building more stuff so you can go out and explore more caves and kill more enemies. It's the best example of emergent gameplay out there right now, I think.

You'd have to be sorely lacking in creative bones not to enjoy making temples and towers and underground bases, and even then the single player should last you at least a good ten hours before you run out of things to do. Which for thirteen bucks is hella good.

My two cents. YH probably knows how restrained I'm being at the moment.

Oh, and it's not even finished. Notch plans on adding to it "so long as people want it", and judging by the fact that sales have crashed his server and made paypal withhold his money for fraud, I don't think it's going to be stopped anytime soon.

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Hm. Sounds worth a go, although I'll have to take your word on it for now. Even with lawsuits aside, I've got basically no time at the moment.

Incidentally, I'm not looking forward to today. A whole wasted day of trucking around, getting affidavits signed, visiting (woefully understaffed) police stations and talking to lawyers. Maybe I should counter-sue. Bah.

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I'll give it a shot, fugu.

YH
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Fugu23 wrote:
My two cents. YH probably knows how restrained I'm being at the moment.

He really is, I'm proud of him. So instead, I'm gonna gush about it.

I felt the same, digging holes and playing with wooden blocks was fun when I was 4, but the fun of working on something together is great fun. The more you build, the more you want to build. Yesterday, Fugu showed me the castle he had made, and we found ourselves digging out a cavern underneath it; this simple cave has now become a flooded tomb. Today, he built a small bamboo forest, which then generated an Asian-style temple behind the forest, and behind this temple, in the hills, I found a little cave, which when I explored opened into another cave. I then added some water and hey-presto: a secret grotto with a waterfall; I then dug a little water slide at the top, and then above the grotto on the hill, I made a stone fountain.

After that, I found the most amazing cave ever that's like a mile underground, which I'm still in the process of exploring 'cos it's so frikkin huge. I won't even get started on how awesome the Valhalla map is.

PS - Currently we are in the process of constructing the Tower of the Gods.

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I got the free alpha, but there's no sound. What's going on?

Luagar's picture
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Just finished reading The Jungle. Woulda been happy if it had ended with Chapter 27 rather than randomly tacking on a socialist pamphlet at the end. Chapter 27 even reads like the end of a book.

Started The Freedom of the Will by Jonathan Edwards.

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Luagar wrote:

Just finished reading The Jungle. Woulda been happy if it had ended with Chapter 27 rather than randomly tacking on a socialist pamphlet at the end.

Started The Freedom of the Will by Jonathan Edwards.

 

Yeah, that is always a problem, when a book that is otherwise pretty good finishes the story as far as it needs to but keeps going is bad enough, and one that keeps going by inserting an author tract tends to stop being considered good eventually.

 

Reading a book on screenwriting by Robert McKee called simply Story. Thankfully, he doesn't even acknowledge the arbitrary divide between literary and popular fiction, giving each movie fair judgement on its own merits and equal standards rather than "this does x in popular fiction so it sucks" vs. "this does x in literary fiction so it's great." 

 

Need to write an essay on how Achebe completely missed the point of Heart of Darkness by Conrad. Whoo.

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Jeroic wrote:
Yeah, that is always a problem, when a book that is otherwise pretty good finishes the story as far as it needs to but keeps going is bad enough, and one that keeps going by inserting an author tract tends to stop being considered good eventually.

I doubt it'll stop being considered a classic but it seems that it isn't read very often already. People only know it as "that book about meat-packing."

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Luagar wrote:

Jeroic wrote:
Yeah, that is always a problem, when a book that is otherwise pretty good finishes the story as far as it needs to but keeps going is bad enough, and one that keeps going by inserting an author tract tends to stop being considered good eventually.

I doubt it'll stop being considered a classic but it seems that it isn't read very often already. People only know it as "that book about meat-packing."

If I wasn't already in essay-mode, I'd have laughed. 

 

But speaking of classics, I note an unfortunate trend. Since in the twentieth century an arbitrary distinction was created between popular and literary fiction so that snobs could still feel they were superior in an increasingly literate society, several books, being put out as literary fiction, don't get the wide readership they deserve while others are considered classics undeservingly, meanwhile works of popular fiction get wider audiences, deserved or otherwise, but books that should be taught in classrooms are rejected for being "commercial trash." 

 

I cite for examples:

James Joyce's short story Araby is about a little boy who breaks down and cries because he didn't enjoy a fair and didn't get to bang Mangen's sister, packaged in tricks of superficial catholic symbolism. If it had been called popular fiction, it would have been lambasted as a wangst-ridden waste of paper. But because it is literary, it is GREAT. Alternatively, works of literary fiction that are actually good, like Slaughterhouse 5, don't get as wide of an audience as they should because of the reputation for stodginess. Alternatively-Alternatively works of "popular" fiction that deserve intense study either as books or for cultural anthropology (Harry Potter is a cultural phenominon, after all, and Lord of the Rings was hated by the stodgy literary critics of its time) will fall by the wayside for not being literary, or further plain stupid books like Twilight will get sold more than deserving books, add to that the sci-fi ghetto and you have yourself a picture of what amounts to the literary landscape. 

 

While I'm ranting, I feel that, using Araby again as an example, people hold supposedly literary fiction to lower standards. Wangst especially seems to be acceptable more in books coined "literary" than "popular." (although I never was a fan of Joyce, and consider his books to be more portraiture, a cheap imitation, than legitimate slice of life stories, but that's me. Also I always considered stream-of-consciousness a poor gimmick for people with nothing to say, like shacky-cam is for filmmakers with nothing to show).

 

Also I undercooked my scrambled eggs this morning and am feeling ill. So I'll go further, that oftentimes books that existed before the arbitrary divide was made will be forced into the wrong section, or things from one will be moved to another over time (Lord of the Rings is often studied and considered all literary and shit now, Shakespeare wrote specifically for the vulgar masses as did Dickens, etc). Therefore it's my contention that all fiction should be considered equal, no story considered inferior or superior on the basis of intent but on content, and all held to a real standard based on genre and demographic. 

 

Wow, what a rant. I feel so much better. If you read through all that, thanks for your patience. 

Fugu23's picture
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KnightMariel wrote:

I got the free alpha, but there's no sound. What's going on?

Notch wrote:

The following things do not work at the moment:

  • Registering an account
  • Purchasing the game
  • User verification for online servers
  • Sounds and music for new players

gritz's picture
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Joined: 08/23/2010

Civ 5 came out today. I imagine I'll be playing ridiculous amounts of it over the next several years, just like Civ 4.

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Joined: 06/30/2010

Restarted Steven Erikson's Malazan Book of the Fallen series last night. Read the Prologue of Gardens of the Moon. I'd read roughly halfway through the first book during the summer, but quit for whatever reason. I wish I hadn't. Great writing. If you enjoy fantasy, check this book out.