Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Real Bigotry in Gaming

Lately, I've been seeing a bunch of articles complaining about bigotry in gaming.  Articles about racism, gender discrimination and even about homophobia (literally: 'fear of man' - see how incoherent these modernist labels can be?) in games.  Now, for the most part, these complaints all came from the usual suspects: individuals who often come from the left wing of the political spectrum and are obsessed with a vision of a Utopia where radical egalitarianism reigns supreme.  When Mark Levin summarized the Big Government Statist in Ameritopia, I think he also hit upon the essential characteristics of  this personality type - a not surprising coincidence since most radical egalitarians are usually Statists, too:

"It is observed that the Statist is dissatisfied with the condition of his own existence....He is angry, resentful, petulant, and jealous....The Statist searches for significance and even glory in a utopian fiction of his minds making, the earthly attainment of which, he believes, is frustrated by those who do not share it."

Thus, the mindset of the professional victim, and his resultant crusade against perceived worldly injustice that seemingly hides under every rock and mattress in the land.

While I agree there is bigotry to be found in gaming, it isn't with these favorite discriminatory hobbyhorses of the left.  Rather, I think there are two actual bigotries that need to be confronted by gamers: anti-religiosity (often anti-Catholicism to be specific) and age discrimination.  I won't deal with the former today....

Monday, March 18, 2013

It All Goes to Hell When Hillary Shows Up

[Warning: Some minor spoilers follow]

I should have known that when Hillary Clinton showed up in Black Ops 2, the game's interesting campaign was going to go straight to hell.  Oh, she didn't star as herself - which is strange considering how this game did not shy from including other real people in its cast - but as "President Bosworth".  Nevertheless, as with Oliver North, the similarity of appearance was unmistakable.   Sure, she wasn't running around hiding the Rose Law Firm records, nor did she scream "what difference at this point does it make!" when the bodies started piling up due to the global terrorism unleashed by Raul Menendez, but the bug eyes sort of gave the game away (as well as her apparent affinity for the ChiComs...I, for one, found it strange that "President Bosworth's" first call after the attacks went to the Chinese premier.  Hmm.  Old habits die hard, I suppose). 

Be that as it may, it was shortly after "President Bosworth" appeared that Black Ops 2 story ran into trouble (hmm, sort of like how the State Department ran into trouble when she became SecState), and by "trouble" I mean it basically ended within half an hour!  

By now, we've all seen clips of the fantastic drone attack on Los Angeles that occurs in Black Ops 2....

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Quick Review: Ultramarines: A Warhammer 40K Movie

It's not easy being a gamer.   Here we are, participating in one of the most lucrative entertainment genres known to man, yet our beloved hobby is still largely ignored - or even ridiculed - by the majority of the Old Media, particularly television and Hollywood.  Simply, good game movies/shows are incredibly scarce despite the fact that many gaming franchises come with a millions strong fanbase that stretches across national boundaries.  Case in point: Warhammer 40K.

 If you don't know, Warhammer 40K is a science fiction universe set in the far distant future, specifically, the 41st Millennium.  Unlike the sunshine and lollipops sci-fi futures of Star Trek and Star Wars,  Warhammer 40K's future is unremittingly grim, as attested by this standard preamble to every 40K book (and there are many of those, including some New Zork Times bestsellers...praise the Emperor!):

"It is the 41st Millennium. For more than a hundred centuries the Emperor of Mankind has sat immobile on the Golden Throne of Earth. He is the master of mankind by the will of the gods and master of a million worlds by the might of his inexhaustible armies. He is a rotting carcass writhing invisibly with power from the Dark Age of Technology. He is the Carrion Lord of the vast Imperium of Man for whom a thousand souls are sacrificed every day so that he may never truly die. Yet even in his deathless state, the Emperor continues his eternal vigilance. Mighty battlefleets cross the daemon-infested miasma of the Warp, the only route between distant stars, their way lit by the Astronomican, the psychic manifestation of the Emperor's will. Vast armies give battle in His name on uncounted worlds. Greatest amongst his soldiers are the Adeptus Astartes, the Space Marines, bio-engineered super-warriors. Their comrades in arms are legion: the Imperial Guard and countless planetary defence forces, the ever-vigilant Inquisition and the tech-priests of the Adeptus Mechanicus to name only a few. But for all their multitudes, they are barely enough to hold off the ever-present threat to humanity from aliens, heretics, mutants -- and far, far worse. To be a man in such times is to be one amongst untold billions. It is to live in the cruelest and most bloody regime imaginable. These are the tales of those times. Forget the power of technology and science, for so much has been forgotten, never to be relearned. Forget the promise of progress and understanding, for in the grim dark future there is only war. There is no peace amongst the stars, only an eternity of carnage and slaughter, and the laughter of thirsting gods."

If you are like me, you probably experienced a chill up your spine when reading that.  This is precisely why fans of 40K have been clamoring for years for a big budget film treatment. 

Unfortunately, I cannot now tell you that Ultramarines: A Warhammer 40K Movie is that treatment.  However, I can tell you that this is a solid first step for the Emperor....