Tuesday, March 11, 2008

I Want My MTV

For a little stretch of this timeline, everybody who had haircuts like Luke Skywalker could get laid.

And there were plenty of guys that were probably forced to have Luke Skywalker haircuts, like the dudes on Battlestar Galactica heh.

Now, back in the days when Star Wars came out, there wasn't any such thing as VCRs, so if you wanted to see Star Wars, you had to go to a movie theatre and just remember the stuff you saw there, y'know, 'cause you couldn't just purchase it and watch it over and over again as many times as you wanted and totally desensitize yerself to the shit.

And that made things even worse for TV shows like Battlestar Galactica, 'cause if you missed one of those shows, that was it, baby, I mean, who knows when the TV was gonna play that show again heh.

But nowadays both of them things is no big deal, y'know, 'cause you know you can always record junk or buy the DVD or catch it the next time they play it or watch it on On Demand or whatever.

Its not "special" like it used to be, where it was sorta a big deal to go out to the movies and see Star Wars.

It was more like going to the circus, it was more like Star Wars was visiting your town or something.

Or, in the case of Battlestar Galactica, you knew every other Battlestar Galactica fan in the world was out there somewhere in the dark watching the same show as you.

Well, mebbe not in the whole world, but whatever, you know what I'm saying, it sorta explains what the appeal of watching something playing on TV is even though you own the DVD and you coulda watched it whenever you want.

Its that old fashioned movie magic heh.

Saturday morning cartoons were another thing like that, before there was a bunch of cartoon channels and the Disney DVD babysitter, there was only a couple hours a day you could watch cartoons, and there wasn't jack shit to watch as far as cartoons went on Sunday.

And the only times they played cartoons during primetime was a "Special Presentation" reserved for holiday junk like that Charlie Brown Christmas thing, and we'd get all excited and shit, 'member?

I mean, we liked that Charlie Brown Christmas shit even though it sucked some serious ass, that's just how starved for cartoons they kept us ahaha.

But now its like, shit, there's cartoons everywhere, man, big deal.

I have no idea how to recapture some of that old fashioned movie magic and apply it to games (or anything else), I mean, I thought about it for at least thirty seconds now and I got nuthin.

Mebbe Live Events could be sorta like that, if they were done a little better, y'know, like, "its Friday Night Online!" or something.

But it made me think that you COULD recapture some of that old fashioned movie magic in games by having movies play in a movie theatre inside a game.

Y'know, 'cause you can't record those or buy 'em on DVD unless the game has that innit too.

Although I guess you could "bootleg" it with a screen capture program or something, but whatever, the point is you could play old (or new) episodes of Battlestar Galactica inside a game no prob.

And sorta simulate that 70s movie magic.

Oh sure, it wouldn't make sense in an Ork game, but its kinda weird to think about all the scifi games that don't have anything like that, seeing as how TV screens sorta pervade our current universe.

And sure, it takes "extra effort" to implement something like that in a game, especially if you are gonna create your own content, insteada just managing your players creating content, or getting a deal with whoever to "relay" episodes of the Dukes of Hazzard or something.

Same thing with radio and shit.

Another thing it made me think of is the way a game that does have TV or Radio or Movies and ads in it always tries to do comedic little things with it.

Y'know, 'cause they know they don't have time to do anything good, so they just make a quick little joke out of it.

Or they figure people are here to play a game, and not watch some damn thing on TV.

But what if somebody did do something really great with it.

Something that was even better than the game you were playing heh.

Something that would turn all those lame-ass "adventurers" into proper couch potatoes like us.

But you had to play the game to watch it.

That kinda shit almost did happen in Max Payne and Vampire Bloodlines, I mean, I know I never missed a show in Max Payne heh.

Hey man, they could have real live commercials and everything, skies the limit, really, I don't have anything invested in this dumb little idea that ain't got nothing to do with the stuff that really matters to me.

Y'know, like helicopters.

I just think its weird that people got their own personal houses in games but no TV heh.

No wonder nobody wants to hang out there, its like spending some end-of-the-world break-out-the-acoustic-guitar hello-silence-my-old-friend sent-to-your-room time or something ahaha.

"Hey, wanna come over to my cave and stare at the wall?"

See, something like that makes me think that maybe the sword-n-orc games ain't got it so good afterall.

I mean, I sure as hell don't wanna hear a bunch of goddam minstrels play anything on Minstrel Radio or whatever they had back in them days heh.

When we could be watching Southpark or the New Battlestar Galactica or whatever on our virtual couches with our virtual buddies.

Heck, there's no reason that virtual movie theatres couldn't charge real money and play real movies.

Don't ya think Tarantino or Elvira or somebody would be turned on by the idea of "virtually" hosting some kinda limited-audience Grindhouse thing like that?

There's bound to be some out-of-work aging actor dude or something totally willing to host that kinda in-club shit heh.

I mean, worst case, think Danny Bonaduce and Gary Coleman or something ahaha.

And fer the love of mike, if people with Luke Skywalker haircuts can get laid, anything is possible, y'know?


Sundry Chicken said...

This is why I'm totally enjoying PvP now. When I take some guy down I know he's in some dark apartment or house somewhere cursing me out and just as amped up as I am. You're connected. Likewise when I get owned by some super leet dudes you can tell they just expect to mow over you like grass... but they still do the little victory jump and sometimes dance on your corpse. Least nobody really gets hurt, cept egos. Fun times are when your equipment is evenly matched and you both play the best you can and hope you get a few lucky strikes in and walk away victorious with like 5% health. Though NONE of that even remotely compares to watching Star Wars in a packed theatre in the 70's. Cause back in my day we were innocent, looking to the stars and thinking we could touch them someday.

Ole Bald Angus the Monk said...

Everything can be simulated, including innocence.

You can take people back to any cool place you found and let them look through the sunglasses you were wearing.

The conditions need to be appreciated and understood and described, but that's about all there is to it.

Its exactly like explaining stuff to a robot, because that's what it is.

So nothing is gone forever, not even innocence.

Although some things ARE pretty damn tricky to find and pick up again after you set them down somewhere in a movie theatre parking lot in the '70s 'cause you needed both hands to impress some cute-n-dorky chick in a tight t-shirt heh.

But then again there's always SOME kind of harder, better, faster, stronger innocence to try if all you can find is the wrapper to the old one ahaha.

Sundry Chicken said...

Waking the robotic dream.

Reminds me of Roy's little speech from Blade Runner, "I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser gate. All those moments, will be lost in time, like tears, in rain... Time to die." Simulated life, living on the cutting edge of real life. Which is real, true, alive?

Being able to step beyond the simulacron into a place with no borders, that seems to me what countries, games, even worlds are founded upon.

Strange though, the borders between the real and the simulated are blurring evermore. Then who becomes Moses, Jefferson, Elvis or Neo and creates a new reality for everyone to wander about.

Talk about innocence. Feels like we're standing on the edge just before the leap into real virtuality. Maybe there is no leap and taking that line and erasing it so IRL drops from the lexicon IS the next step. The world moving through you rather than you moving through the world.

Delving into the sub and super conscious has so many touchstones and ways to express and program robots. Joseph Campbell and Lucas played a bit with it, let everyone glimpse a bit of the near shore of Aman with a good story.

And everybody loves a good story. Long as it's got smores.

Ole Bald Angus the Monk said...

Or are we all virtual reality simulators that are always making improvements on our own individual inner simulations of reality in order to get closer and closer to reality?

Always building better tools that allow us to illustrate thought in better ways (now in motion! now with sound! now in COLOR!) and prove our concepts through the closest thing to truth we know, y'know, our perceptions and raw sensory data.

The core of every sentient creature demands continuous feedback, continuous proof that it exists.

The desire for things to have meaning, the desire for attention, the desire for people to agree with your simulation of events, those are just fancy pants side effects of first question, everything is built on an uncertainty, its an uncertainty that drives us toward certainty.

But then again, if we ever did manage to cross over into reality, there wouldn't be any place to think about it from heh.

And we probably wouldn't get any of the jokes about how fucked up everybody else's simulations and stuff were either ahaha.

Poor Roy Batty, military androids should never be allowed to read poetry and stuff, it just messes them up.

If he woulda had more time after his epiphany he coulda drawn some pictures of all the awesome things he'd seen or become a painter or something insteada having all that stuff end up in a dumpster behind a chinese restaurant heh.

Sundry Chicken said...

The crossover point from uncertainty to certainty, unknowingness to knowingness that totally makes me think of calculus and black holes.

The infinite seems like reality. The finite a comprehensible chunk. Like our brains and egos and experiences and all only cope and deal with a very small sub-set of what is really going on all around us.

The virtual part comes into play when we forget that the infinite exists and just live in our own self-limited pretend worlds. Though some people do chose to live that way willingly. Just like animals who've lived in a zoo their who life can't and shouldn't be let out of the cages.

So like having a nice graduated kind of setup where you can achieve and win and keep on growing but not really be threatened or not have too much uncertainty is just plain nice. Then there are those others who are gonna break every rule, push the edge and try to break the reality and bust the certainty. Man, duality is a real trip. Life and death. Reality and non-reality. Ha, seems like a big game show. Except the kind where Alex Barker is some kind of cross-bred clone who is a million years old and has been announcing contestants for nine-hundred thousand of those.