Monday, September 21, 2015

Paul Tassi, Bungie apologist?

First let me say I like reading Forbes writer Paul Tassi's articles about video games. But if you read his stuff, you get this feeling that he writes from a prospective of supporting video game companies rather than looking how those businesses treat the gamer. Of course, he writes for the pro-business Forbes.

This week, he freaked out over an item sold by Xur in the game Destiny. Here's his article. The item is called "The Three of Coins." You get five chances for an Exotic weapon or armor engram with the cost seven strange coins. That's the can be some of the best stuff in the game. Now to get it, you have to defeat an Ultra boss. That's a yellow bar boss with a name and symbol. What upsets Tassi is that people are farming by doing mission "The Scourge of Winter" over and over again. Gamers would kill the boss and themselves and respawn the boss quickly. Oh, the humanity.

But here's Tassi shows his pro-Bungie bias. He frets it could break the game. Really? Tassi doesn't get it. Gamers getting to where they want to at a faster rate doesn't break the game unless the goal is to stretch the game out till Destiny 3 comes out and milk every cent from gamer with DLC. Second, you don't get an Exotic engram everytime you kill an Ultra. How do I know that? After using fifteen of the items, I got only three engrams. So you see it works the way it was designed. And get this, I'm still stuck at a light rating of 244, well below the number needed to try The Taken King's raid. Tassi should also realize that a gamer cannot equip more than one Exotic item at a time. The Three of Coins and quickly farming it does not break the game or turn players into super Guardians overnight.

Tassi is a good writer but his big business bias is showing.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Stephen Colbert gorges on Donald Trump and Oreos

Here is the best piece from last night's premiere episode of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. In it, Colbert goes over conservative Republican Donald Trump's swearing off Oreo cookies.

An open letter to Jay Bruce

Dear Jay Bruce,

As I watched you strike out with the bases loaded in the eighth, it's become clear you have not been paying any attention as to how the opposition plays you or pitches to you. Because we see the same results with the same defense all the time. You make an out, usually by striking out. Mind you, I'm not asking for a four hundred batting average. I just want to see contact and clutch hitting. So, let me tell you how they're defending against you.

Um... Jay, have you noticed that the third baseman, shortstop and second baseman all move to the right, i.e. towards first base? That's because you pull a lot of balls even ground balls. Now, I'm not against pull hitters but they're going to get you out because balls that would be hits if the defense played regularly would be fair. To keep them honest, why don't you try going the other way? Heck, a weak ground ball at third base is likely going to be a double, maybe a triple. You do that enough times and guess what happens? They'll play you honestly. Then you will be able to get better pitches to hit and pull.

Second, do you know how they're pitching to you? Let me put it this way. They're not coming in. It's away. Away. AWAY. Most of the time it's a low and away breaking ball. Now, q lot of these pitches are balls. Why swing at them? You won't make good contact. Hit strikes.

I hope this helps.

Sincerly, a life long Reds fan.

The Late Show with Stephen Colbert review

I'll have to admit that I wasn't that enthusiastic about Stephen Colbert leaving his Comedy Central show to host CBS' The Late Show. Colbert was absolutely brilliant playing a conservative pundit and showing the world the crazy right-wing views of conservatism. And he did it with hilarious comedy. I expected him to play The Late Show safe and appeal to middle America. Well, after watching the first show, I'll have to say I was partly right.

Colbert started the show with a video of him singing the national anthem with common citizens. I couldn't figure out whether this was comedy or whether he was trying to be patriotic. That could be a problem. I mean one time during the song, he's throwing a strike at a bowling alley or being drowned out by the machinery at an auto plant. Rosanne Barr it was not, but nothing controversial. If he's restrained here as it was, it feels as if Colbert won't push the envelope like he did with his old show on Comedy Central, The Colbert Report.

When he did push the envelope, it was with an obtuse piece about a deal with a pagan symbol, The Red Amulet. The skit had Colbert admit he made a deal with it for success on the show. It forced him to promote a sponsor which was a humus product. I'm guessing this is a metaphor that Colbert would have to sacrifice some of his artistry for commercial purposes. Too strange to be funny.

I do like the choice of New Orleans jazz musician Jon Batiste and his band Stay Human. The music is funky jazz fusion. And while we know pop music will be on the show, let's hope Colbert injects more mainstream jazz. Colbert is a patron of the arts and jazz is America's indigenous art form.

Colbert finally does hit his stride on the topic of conservative Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. The Donald is a gift from the comedic gods. Colbert discusses Trump's swearing off of Oreo cookies. Colbert eats one and says he will only do one joke about it. But he can't eat just one Oreo nor can he do one joke about Trump. This is Colbert at his best. Saying something about the world and making fun of the craziness in it.

Then there were the guests. Actor George Clooney is fine. The faux movie he was promoting was cute. But somebody thought a politician might be a good idea. I'm sorry Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush is boring. And Colbert dominated the conversation. When Colbert got Jeb to question the differences between him and his older presidential brother George W, Jeb said George spent too much money. But Colbert failed to follow up with why that was so. It's called "The Iraq War", Stephen. Next time, have more comedians as guests.

It was a lukewarm beginning for the new Late Show. Colbert should stick to what he does best. Sorry, conservatives. That means making fun of the right because they're hilarious. And not be so concerned with middle America as to dictate choices for the show. The grade is B.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Stephen Colbert rips Jeb Bush for fundraising off his show

New Late Show host, Stephen Colbert, had some fun with conservative Republican Presidential candidate Jeb Bush. You see, Bush is trying to raise money off his appearance on The Late Show by having a contest where you give him a contribution with a chance to attend the show. Check out Colbert's funny video which is reminiscent of his Colbert Report show with his signature witty sarcasm. Oh, and watch out for some salty humor about New York Jets owner Woody Johnson.

Sarah Palin urges immigrants to speak "American"

My muse, conservative Republican Sarah Palin, urged immigrants to speak "American." I can't make this stuff up. Yeah, she meant English but she doesn't understand that our common language comes from England. Oy. Check Sarah's funny video below courtesy of CNN.