VH1 Kid Stars

A few days ago, Mara Wilson posted on Twitter that she’d be featured on a special VH1 was doing on the 100 Greatest Kid Stars; she’d be on the episode covering 20-40.

I decided to go ahead and check out the special in general, at least for the last 3 episodes (so 1-60). Throughout the coverage, I heard mention that more specifically, it would be kid stars from the last 20 years. Some I recognized, some I didn’t, and others were truly bizarre ordering choices, the one most on my mind right now as I type this is number 1.

To call me a Justin Bieber hater would be a stretch, but I certainly don’t care for his work and am no fan. Regardless, putting him at #1 and then the Olsen twins at #3/4 is just…mind-boggling. The choices on the list appeared to be about the success these kids had while actually being under 18. Some moved on to stay in the industry, and some didn’t, but nowhere did it seem the measurement was based on current success.

Bieber is a relatively recent thing, in light of considering the past 20 years, and the choice appears to be based more on this recency or current success than anything he did while in “kid star” status. Admittedly, I did not actually watch the rest of the sequence once they announced it was him, but I doubt any explanation would satisfy me.

Number 2 was Macauly Caulkin, and number 5 was Daniel Radcliffe. I probably would have picked the Olsen twins myself, but I’d think either of those guys would be better choices as well.

The full list can be found here.

The Hawkeye Initiative

So I heard about this through GAF this past weekend, and a geek girl site I recently added to my mega-Twitter list, The Mary Sue covered it today too. Some of the pics were well worth a laugh. Others made me cringe, so enter at your own risk.

It is downright painful to look at some of these poses from comics. It’s like you hear about it and you kinda sorta know about it, but you don’t really believe it until you see it. Well, that’s how it goes for me. Truly baffles me some people can make money with art SO bad (I refer to the originals, not the parodies).

Actual Hawkeye Initiative Tumblr:

Article about this initiative:

Tumblr post linked with quote about this initiative:

GAF topic about it:

Note to self

Note to self: The “Awesome” fanart thread at NeoGAF has “awesome” in quotes for a reason and should be avoided in the future.

Random TK/SC rant

On the one hand, I like being asked and therefore giving my opinion and on the other hand, the mention of the name of the worst character ever (in any context) is the quickest way to get your comment deleted on my channel. What to do? Rant on Tumblr of course!

Plus, I wasn’t really asked for my opinion, more like someone drew their own conclusion about me and commented about it.

The comment tonight was on my video showing off Soul Calibur 5 Critical Edge moves. The video was largely ignored by pretty much everyone, and by that I mean I certainly got no comments on my efforts and only later in person did friends of mine tell me they even watched it at all. I had actually been quite proud of it, but this person’s comment wasn’t really about my efforts either so can’t feel too bad.

Anyway, they asked “No Dampierre?” As in, I assume to mean, why wasn’t he in the video? It’s quite simple really. If I dislike a character enough, I will ignore him/her given the chance, and I find Dampierre repulsive. I would not subject myself to him anymore than I have to.

And then this person brought up comparing Patroklos to that character I despise from Tekken. I have hinted at such a comparison myself on this blog, but let me make it clear to anyone who cares to read this blog with a genuine interest in my opinion about the whole thing why my feelings differ.

Here is the HUGE difference.

There is A LOT of history in the Tekken 6 hype explaining events from E3 2005 to E3 2006 to 2007 to 2008 to 2009, and all the garbage in between. Believe me, I’ve recorded like 2 hours worth of audio explaining it, just figured it was boring material not worth publishing. In that time period, guess when it was known that we’d be stuck with that awful Scenario Campaign centering on two EXPANSION characters? April 2009!

Meanwhile, it was clear from about when Soul Calibur 5 was announced that Patroklos had the type of role he did. This person didn’t ask, but I don’t like Patroklos. He starts off as a stupid, arrogant douchebag and despite any character development in the story mode, said change does not make up for the numerous faults in Soul Calibur 5.

Added on top of those differences, my passion for Tekken was much greater than my passion for Soul Calibur. And then on top of all that, Tekken 6 left me so bitter that I swore off getting excited for a video game ever again. I don’t feel this way about Patroklos because I’m not as invested. I don’t post on a Soul Calibur message board, having to repeat my point or opinion about him all the time. I’m not bombarded over and over again with his face on this message board I do not go to or in my deviantART inbox or when I browse Tumblr looking up Siegfried.

The reason I hate Tekken 6 so much is because I wanted to love it so much. I loved Soul Calibur 3, but my hype for Soul Calibur 4 was nothing compared to how badly I wanted Tekken 6. Those aren’t typos. SC4 was a disappointment, and T6 was an astronomical failure, so I had my expectations in check for SC5, I can assure you.

WIP Traced Devil Jin Pose

Pose is traced from a Tekken Blood Vengeance screenshot. Updates were made to make the character look more like his Tekken 5 version rather than the movie version. This draft is unfinished shading.

I need a break and sometimes doing so along with checking over the progress of the work helps think of ways to improve.

The State of Gaming Press

Well, I don’t have a whole lot to add to this subject that hasn’t already been said by others, but I feel it’s noteworthy all the same, albeit I am a month behind anyone else who follows gaming “journalism” (which I don’t follow all that closely, but I catch some things on NeoGAF).

Among the better summaries I’ve read of what happened are these:

A basic run-down for the lazy: A writer by the name of Robert Florence (“Rab”) writes an article that’s posted on Eurogamer talking about the state of gaming journalism and its relation to PR, citing a picture of Geoff Keighley sitting by some Mountain Dew and Doritos and an example of some Twitter argument about game journalists using a hashtag to win PS3s. He named two people specifically, not really accusing them of anything so much as a warning of how they present themselves would give a casual observer reason to question what they are doing. Then the story exploded into something more after that.

Eurogamer received a complaint (possibly a threat of legal action though it’s hard to say) and amended the article to remove those names. Florence understands their position but notes that means he can’t do columns for them anymore.

Among those named was a Lauren Wainwright who worsened the situation for herself by doing things like tweeting that she worked for Square Enix as a consultant but never reviewed their games whereupon the Internet then digs up a Deus Ex review she did, proving that to be false. Her link to Square Enix had been included on her current resume and was later removed. She has since made her Twitter account private, but the news spread all the same.

Thus concludes my summary of the event and below is a little more of my thoughts on the matter.

Games journalism in the industry is largely regarded as a joke and largely for reasons such as what transpired here. I often see a Penny Arcade image that goes a little something like this: “This is how most gaming interviews go. ‘So how awesome is your game?’ ‘So awesome.’ They are part of a greater machine, a hype machine, and they have a status quo where accepting gifts is considered the norm. Some question it, many don’t.

Truth be told, I have a couple of gaming sites on Twitter lists but NeoGAF is where I go for news because I trust them to moderate it a bit better than the journalists. They sort of filter through a lot of the BS and tell you the meat of what you want to know (well, what I want to know anyway, which is usually just “What’s the release date?” but I have a general curiosity for sales numbers too).

If any participating in the whole gaming industry machine would genuinely want to know: I think higher standards would be better, such as not accepting gifts to name an item I’ve seen mentioned or at least an acknowledgment that some calling themselves journalists aren’t. They’re fans, writers, “enthusiast press” I think is another term I’ve seen. Would I read them more? I don’t know, but I’d roll my eyes less and have a bit more respect for those involved.