Nice to see you haven't given up on the blog old man. ;)
While I enjoy the Secular society discussion I felt it the perfect time to take a diversion into the fun side. We did mention we'd have some fun things on here too!
I saw Jackie Chan and Jet Li's latest movie: Forbidden Kingdom and let me say this is a must see of fans of both actors! For one you get to see Jackie revisiting some of his classic "Drunken Master" moves, but this time as a master. For Jet Li fans you get to see the lighter side of this talented actor.
Those who dislike wire fu (I.e. running on branches and jumping in the air) should be warned, but not dissuaded. Unlike Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon the entire movie isn't full of such antics, just parts.
The basic story line is as thin as most Hong Kong action movies, but there's enough there to move the action along. All in all a fun romp, but don't think too hard on it!
2. Video Games
Operation Darkness is coming out for the Xbox 360, and a demo is available for download. If you're a fan of SRPG's (Strategy RPG's) then you should check this one out. Now there ARE issues with this game, as with all games. First off is the camera. It's odd and for me it doesn't let you zoom out far enough. There IS a mini map (press Y) which helps a little but the camera is still touchy and can spin you around if you're not careful. Another thing to watch our for is it's got shades of Xcom in it where you can not take back moves and you can set up overwatch to shoot when the enemy movies. Unfortunetly while cover is important you have no control over your character's stances (I.e. Standing, kneeling, or crawling) . I always knock off points when I see this in a game because Xcom friggin had it over 20 years ago! O.O!
For me this game is a rent (gamefly has it listed) and I'll give a full review when I get the final product.
3. Board Games
Yep, I'm old school. How old school? Try D&D. No "A" mind you, D and Bloody D baby.
Which I find funny since I HATE the D20 system I still play it. :p
So I bring this up because 4th edition is on the way. (Dun dun dun!) So what's new? How about a major dummying down of the system, which at first blush sounds bad but I've been noticing it isn't always the case. Sometimes added complexity doesn't help matters (BESM 3rd edition).
The major deal with 4th edition is how they're starting to label classes into "roles" like in MMO's. So you've got Tanks, DPS, and healers, though they're calling them things like Controllers, Protectors, and leaders for D&D. I haven't read or seen much on the mechanics involved here but it certainly sounds like they're streamlining things here for ease of use. Which isn't always bad since you old school folks can remember the loss of a state. (Comleyness anyone?)
Add to the rules changes they are actually creating a "Virtual table top" for us to play with online. Unfortunetly I'm seeing lots of words like "subscribers" and the like that I don't want to see. One of the great things about role playing was it allowed you to bring in people who DID NOT buy these games and let them play. I hope there are free clients that folks can use to try it out because having to subscribe to play D&D? Don't think so.
All in all I'm optimistic, but in the end I won't buy anything since I doubt they'll fix my biggest complaints with the system. (Level based class system. :p )