I had a bunch of small thoughts to write, but they got delayed because of tiredness and relaxation and a 19 hour work day. Here they are.
One: the cancellation of Enterprise. It both amuses and saddens me to realize that as soon as Enterprise started getting good, it got cancelled. What I saw of the first and second season — not much — was stupid mainstreamed-Trek dreck. Some stupid temporal war, some gratuitous Borg moment (completely contradicting the already screwed up Trek universe’s chronology), some naked Vulcan rub-downs, a themse song more fitting “Roswell” or “Smallville” than “Star Trek”, and other garbage not using the show’s premise to its potential.
I think they brought in some new writers this season, because the episodes that I’ve seen have been much better. More entertaining. More “classic-Trek”. More connections to the proper Trek history (Dr. Noonien Soong!). It’s too bad. If they started the show like this, maybe they’d have had a better run of it. Then again, maybe it would have been cancelled sooner…
Star Trek needs to take a long hiatus. Take a break. Let the other space drama take over for a while. Maybe kick Rick Berman out of a spacelock.
Two: I have an annoying musical habit. When I acquire new music that I enjoy, I tend to listen to it approximately fifty times in a row. I then get sick of it, stop listening for a while, discover it again some weeks later, listen to it fifty times in a row again, and repeat. Borderline compulsive.
Three: the so-called “casual gamer” has no sense of gaming history. They don’t know what came before and they don’t really care. They just care about the games that they have encountered and enjoyed.
The more knowledgable gamers (such as I), do care. These gamers are interested in how things are progressing, where they’re going, the lineages, the influences, the innovations. This is why said gamers look at Snood, and its successes, with disdain. They see nothing but a man capitalizing off of a better game with a derivative rip-off that has a hideous design and no character. Conveniently enough, I just found Videogame plagiarism, clones and ripoffs.
The developers that reach that casual gamer market embrace this, much to the chagrin of the knowledgable.
Three and a half: only recently, while looking into block puzzle history, did I realize that Popcap’s “original” Zuma is nothing but a blatant clone of Mitchell’s Puzz Loop. Hell, the ripoff is so obvious that you can’t help but think that Popcap licensed the game from them — but I’ve yet to find any evidence of this. Popcap-=1; (the counter is getting low).
Three point seven: speaking of Mitchell, I want to get their new game Polarium. I can’t decide whether to wait for a domestic release or import now. It looks like an interesting little puzzler coming out in what seems to be a very good time for block puzzle games. A lot of that is no doubt due to the renewed focus on portable gaming. It’s a genre that is well suited for very quick pick-up-and-play sessions, so with the DS and PSP both in play it’s not surprising that they are showing up in droves. Zookeeper. Mr. Driller. Polarium. Meteos. Lumines. Kollon, along with the pre-requisite Puzzle Bobble and Puyo-Pop ports. I haven’t seen this many block puzzle games — especially with original IP — come out at once since the great post-Tetris deluge.
Three point eight: The DS might not be so great for platformers or racers or first person shooters or, well, a lot of things — but it is really good for puzzle games. The simplified interfaces benefit greatly from the stylus.