This is a monthly archive page for the period of July 2004. If you came directly to this page, you may want to check all recent posts.

July 2004 Archive

The Most Awesome Cover Song of the Year

William Shatner Sings Again.

Captain Kirk teamed up with Ben Folds (yes, that Ben Folds) to create this pop-driven new album. The majority of the album was written by the duo, with the exceptions of "Trying," co-written by Folds and novelist Nick Hornby (yes, the guy behind High Fidelity), "Real" by Brad Paisley and a cover of "Common People" (with Joe Jackson!) by British band Pulp.

I have just heard the Shatnerized "Common People" and it is exactly as you would expect it to be. Read that however you wish.

Posted: July 23, 2004. (Comments: 0)

Raccoon City

Go to the Resident Evil: Apocalypse site. Enter said site. Notice something odd about the "laboratory"?

If you do, then watch the trailer and watch it get blown-up! haha.

Posted: July 22, 2004. (Comments: 0)

Live Wired

An Interview with Larry Hryb, Director of Programming: Xbox Live. For the most part, it's boring corporate boosterism. However, there are some interesting statistics at the end: the top 15 cities by XBox Live memberships.

There's Tokyo (despite poor XBox sales in Japan), London, Houston, Chicago and Toronto. Toronto is definitely no surprise. A relatively large, modern city in a country with good broadband adoption rates (far better than the US, at least, which is odd when you consider the differences in population density). If you play on Live, you no doubt encounter many Canadians.

The list continues: San Diego, New York, Brooklyn, Los Angeles, Miami, Seattle, Calgary, San Antonio, Las Vegas, and the online gaming crazy Seoul.

Yes, Calgary! In a list of major wired metropolises, some with populations in excess of ten million, little Calgary with its sub-million population stands out like a sore thumb. The fact that it made the list is either a testament to the connectivity of Calgary (and indeed Canada) or proof that there is absolutely nothing to do in Cow-Town. Fragging foreigners online might be the only option available when the opportunity to watch the rodeo, watch hockey, or flash your tits isn't there.

In other news, I'm glad to report that the Westhost server this site sits on did not spontaneously combust while being thoroughly fucked over the last couple of days. Jeez...

Daily Usage stats for in July.

I guess it's back to my normal non-existant numbers now...

Posted: July 21, 2004. (Comments: 1)

Doom 3

Doom 3 -- for the SNES!

Awesome graphics, dude!

(Cleaning, and the associated rummaging, is only as interesting as the things you uncover.) PS: It's from EGM #71, June 95.

Update: I notice that some people seem to think that it's a typo on the part of the magazine editors -- I assure you that is not the case. It was mentioned as "Doom 3" in multiple places in the article, in the game index, and on the cover with the text "DOOM 3: Exclusive pics inside!". Also, it was a June issue so it wasn't an April Fools joke.

As for the actual history of SNES Doom 3? I have no clue. It seems to me liked a planned sequel that, obviously, never materialized. Not surprising, considering that Doom 2 was released (not for the SNES) less than a year before the article was written and, as is common now, the developers probably wanted to milk the engine for all its worth. Somewhere along the line, with the new systems on the horizon, it was deemed not worthwhile. Dropped. And never heard from until this current incarnation of Doom 3 appeared. That's all conjecture, though, as I really don't know the story of it. Seems like a job for Lost Levels!

Update 2: I think I figured out the origin of this. Final Doom. You see, Final Doom is essentially Doom 2 with added episodes. In an unofficial way, those episodes might be considered Doom 3 (or Doom 2 1/2). Final Doom was ported to a console: the playstation. Who did the console version? Williams! So it seems as though Williams might have considered porting it to the SNES (and gave EGM a taste or hint), but decided against it during development.

Whether it was going to be called Doom 3* on the SNES or whether that was a misunderstanding on EGM's part, I dunno. (*it wouldn't be the first time that SNES sequels were misnumbered for "clarity".)

Posted: July 17, 2004. (Comments: 30)

Game Woes

Is it the games, or is it just me?

Every dedicated gamer hits a slump. A point where the fun factor drops, the tedium grows, and interests shift to other outlets. Perhaps it's the current crop of games -- not an unreasonable claim, as the summer is the slow season -- but I think I'm experiencing that slump.

There is nothing truly captivating out there. Nothing that warrants more than a passing glance.

Devil May Cry 3, er... I mean, Ninja Gaiden was played for about an hour before being tossed aside in a fit of rage inspired by the absolutely horrid camera engine. Halo bored me to depths I haven't seen since, well, Final Fantasy XI. Rallisport Challenge 2 is sitting on the shelf, still shrink-wrapped. The last thing I did in Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes was defeat Revolver Ocelot... by standing still in first person mode, shooting him repeatedly. Not surprisingly, that was also the last time I touched the GameCube.

I did play a bit of the Mega Mans and I dusted off some of the Genesis games that I have acquired in the last few months, but even those were brief. I'm just not interested.

A break is needed.

And the timing for such a break couldn't have been better: I'm starting a new job for the rest of the summer this Monday. Hooray.

Posted: July 11, 2004. (Comments: 8)

The Reciprocal Influence of Game Music

I was browsing the new releases of the Ant-Zen catalogue when I noticed that Iszoloscope has a new release. What caught me is the description:

this music is the perfect soundtrack for console games like 'silent hill' or 'project eden'. faussurier's addiction to video games seems to be the impetus for creating these moods.

That's not the only such reference. Discog's bio for Iszoloscope says:

Faussurier found his place on the vast musical continuum through videogames, of all things. A fervent gamer, he says he derived a lot of his esthetic direction from games like Doom, Nocturne and Unreal Tournament and a sci-fi shooter called R-Type, all of which combine moody action and eerie soundtracks.

And along with Tarmvred's Viva 6581, which is his 44KHz homage to the MOS6581, the soundchip at the core of the Commodore 64 and the dearly loved Sidstation, I realized that some sort of mainstream threshold was crossed. Maybe a long time ago.

Yes, there are arranged albums and cover bands and chip-tunes, and it is a big business in Japan, but now that gaming influence is spreading outside of the confines of its niche. Granted, it is doing so by going into another niche (Iszoloscope and Tarmvred, cool as they are, can't be called "mainstream" artists,) but it's a step and another sign pointing to the emergence of the video game generation (gratuitous eboy link).

Which is good, because the sooner that generation comes to power the sooner we can completely ignore stupid FUD like this. Yes, Jack Thompson's name appears in that article. SURPRISED!? The key quote is game opponents -- many of whom admit they don't play video games.

PS. Nice summary of The Wind Waker:

"The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker," a Nintendo Co. tale featuring a kid in a green outfit who travels by talking boat and pals around with an excitable fairy named Tingle.

Posted: July 06, 2004. (Comments: 0)


A weblog post about tweaks to the weblog is about as irrelevant as you can get, but such is the nature of this place: irrelevant. I've cleaned up some xhtml, fixed the archive pages a bit, updated my age on the info page (been 24 for half a year now, sheesh), and removed a lot of unnecesary navigation. The problem now is that the navigation area seems too bare. It should be fixed if/when I add a "contact" option there, as my email address is not posted anywhere at all. While that cuts the amount of spam I receive, it does make the few attempts to contact me rather difficult -- especially now that I disabled my catch-all email address.

Also, since most of my referral traffic comes from search engines to single archived entry pages, I have added a small little blurb (on those pages) directing visitors to the main site and to the archives. Detailed messages like that are more relevant than random single-word navigational links.

In other words, small meaningless semantic things.

I have been, however, spending the rest of the day organizing all my old and new CD-Rs. Wow. What a treasure-trove of time-capsule data this endeavour has been. I'm still finding many memories on these discs, so I'll save the details for later.

Posted: July 05, 2004. (Comments: 0)

Things to do When You're *REALLY* Bored

Episode One: construct a four storey tall house out of your games!

Game House!

Either that or play them, but that's a less creative endeavour.

Posted: July 03, 2004. (Comments: 6)

Canada Day for the Non-Social

Things to do to celebrate Canada Day without leaving the home or going near any other people:

  • Get drunk on some local micro-brewery beer.
  • Listen to some Skinny Puppy and Frontline Assembly or, er, some Tragically Hip and Sloan
  • Play Splinter Cell or Homeworld or Knights of the Old Republic or Legacy of Kain or NHL whatever or Unreal or SSX 3.
  • Follow the latest off-season NHL news as the free-agent market heats up.

But mostly just get drunk.

Posted: July 01, 2004. (Comments: 1)
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