Shmee wraps up E3


So another E3 has come and gone, and I thought I would give my impressions of this year’s show.  I am always more interested in the show when new hardware is launched because it lets me know what kind of financial planning I need to do.

This year the big three went with three totally different strategies to selling their hardware: Nintendo decided just to focus on their own games, Sony just decided to keep things they way they are but bump the specs, and Microsoft decided to change the whole way games are bought and sold and not to everyone’s liking.

Nintendo did show off some good games this year, but they are all games that we knew they were making, like a new Smash Brothers, a new Zelda, a new Pikmin, and so on and so forth, but it was all a little uninteresting.  They also didn’t have a choice in the matter with big companies like EA stopping support of the console until it can prove its value.

Sony came to destroy Microsoft this year.  That was their goal and they mostly succeeded.  They came in a hundred dollars cheaper at the cost of not including their new upgraded Playstation Camera with every console, and the games you buy in disc format you can do whatever you want with.  These things pretty much won E3 for the company.

Microsoft decided that it was time to shake up the way console games are bought and sold.  When you buy a game you install it on your console, and then the key that comes with the disk are tied to your account, so say you loose the disk, who cares, you can download it again from Xbox Live.  The problem is that this restricts selling the game to someone else.  You can give the game to a friend if he has been on your friends list for thirty days, or there is a family sharing program, so you can have ten friends or family members that you can share your games with no questions asked, but if they are playing one of your games you cannot play it at the same time.  You can also sell your game back to authorized retailers as well.  This really doesn’t sound that bad, and I especially like the friends and family sharing, but the major downside is that your console has to call in and check your games’ licensing every twenty-four hours otherwise you can’t play your games anymore.

Microsoft obviously needs a new marketing department.  Checking in every twenty-four hours to play games that you own is lame, and it shows that they don’t trust their customers, but that being said that, having an all digital store does make things better.  I love the friends and family sharing idea, and being able to loose my disk but not my content it perfect.  They also must have won some fans with this scheme since EA is make two exclusive games for the Xbox One: Titanfall, and Plants Vs Zombies: Garden Warfare, Metal Gear V is a timed exclusive, and Square is bringing all its games to the Xbox One as well as the PS4, and that has not been the case for quite some time.

Then comes the camera deal.  Sony decided to leave it out so that they could kill the Xbox on price, but I think it was a mistake.  The reviews from the show floor have all stated that the Kinect 2.0 is game changing, and since it is in every box with the Xbox developers are making cools stuff for it.  On the other hand the reviews said that even Sony isn’t showing stuff for their new camera, and that is a shame.  Sony still could have won the price war by making the price $450 and included the camera, and made everyone happy, but instead they made sure that there will never be good content for it.

I hate the new check in mandate for the X1, but I love the things I get with it. It is also where all the games will be, and packing in the Kinect is painful pricewise, but in the end I think it was a smart move.  They just need a new marketing department. Sony made a good console, and there are good games coming out for it, but it is also just the same old thing, and Nintendo has almost just decided to release a console for pretty much their own games, but they are really good games.  I think that when my tax refund comes around I will be buying an Xbox One, but I hope they rethink the check in policy.



Thanks to a Comcast promotion I now have access to HBO, but even better I have access to HBO Go.  It allows me to stream pretty much all of HBOs content on my Xbox in Hi-Def.  Which means I get to watch Game of Thrones Season 3, and I couldn’t be happier.

The one thing I wish now that I have it, is that you didn’t need cable TV to get it because I would probably pay just to have HBO Go, and not have cable TV, and I think this is costing them a ton of subscribers, so if you are out there HBO, you need to allow everyone to sign up for this service and you could be rolling in piles of money!  What Netflix has shown is that people want this sort of thing more than they want cable.  The time for live scripted TV is drawing to a close, and would rather be at the forefront of change instead of missing it and trying to catch up.

Community Vs. The Big Bang Theory









There are two sitcoms that are generally considered to be “geeky”, Community and The Big Bang Theory, and they have both done quite a few shows in common from Dungeons and Dragons episodes to Paint Ball and Even Sci-Fi/Comic Book conventions, but they could not be more different, and it all comes down to how they treat their characters.

Community is about a study group at Greendale Community College, and the different fiascos they get in to due to their diverse makeup and the strange social disorder that Abed Nadir has where he compares everything to TV shows and Movies he has seen, so it gives the show a very meta feel.

The Big Bang Theory is about a group of very smart doctor level scientists, an engineer, and a waitress, and how the group with its socially awkward tendencies and disorders cause humorous events.

You would think that due to the fact that one show is about a community college and that the other is about scientists that The Big Bang Theory would be geekier of the two, but that is not the case.  Community understands geek culture and sometimes makes jokes that only someone with a knowledge of the subject would understand.

For instance in the season four finally of Community, Abed Nadir goes to the darkest timeline, which is a rip-off of Star Trek’s Mirror Universe, and meets himself, and since he is the most like Spock he finds that he is the same in both universes, just like Spock, but they don’t explain the Star Trek connection.  You either get it or you don’t, and they don’t care if you don’t get it.  The Big Bang Theory would never do a joke like that.  Sure they have had Leonard Nimoy on the show, but the Star Trek jokes they make are basically that the guys like Star Trek, so no knowledge of the show is necessary.

My biggest problem with The Big Bang Theory is that a lot of the jokes are at the main characters’ expense.  You are not laughing with Sheldon Cooper, you are laughing at him, and while it is true you do laugh at people in Community, you get the feeling that they are in on the joke, and they make sure that the situations they are in are funnier than the people themselves.  With The Big Bang Theory it seems that I am supposed to laugh at the characters because they are nerds, and that they are doing nerdy things, and as a nerd it is a little insulting.

It is nice that when you watch Community and they have a D&D episode that they are making fun of the situations inside the D&D game, and the craziness that the group comes up with.  Unlike The Big Theory, which half the joke is that the guys are playing D&D in the first place.

All that being said (or written in this case) The Big Bang Theory is funny and they have a group of great writers that make the show good, but I just get a little nerd rage after I think about the humor afterwards.  Community on the other hand is very self referential and doesn’t care if you are having a good time or not, and when they lost Dan Harmon the show’s creator last season, they lost their geeky soul, so it has dropped off a bit, but good news he is back next year!

They are both good shows, but I feel that Community embraces geek culture while The Big Bang Theory makes fun of it, and it is nice to be in on a joke instead of the butt of it, so that is why I am a big fan of Community.

What Do I Want From Next Gen Consoles?


Microsoft is about to announce its next Xbox on May 21st, Sony already had their announcement, and Nintendo launched their new Wii U, but what do I want out of my next console?  From the sound of things Sony and Microsoft seem to think what I want is to get my Social Network feeds streaming to my TV, and that I want to share everything I do with the world, but that sounds awful to me.  I am not a huge fan of social media as it is, so to have it bombarding me while I play games sounds like the worst thing ever.  So here is what I do want.

I want a platform that is easy to develop for, so that I can get all the latest indie games, and along with that I want an online store that is easy to find stuff in.  I don’t want to have to hunt around for the title I want; I just want it to be there at my finger tips waiting for my money.  Speaking of the store, I want to not only buy little indie games in it, but also be able to buy new AAA games there, and be able to preload them like with Steam on the computer.

For some the whole reason to upgrade is the graphics, and that is less of an issue for me because the graphics for the most part are pretty good these days, so what I want is for there to less loading screens, and clean up the jagged lines.  If the new consoles can do those two things I will be happy.

I would also like more TV viewing options.  The current consoles are already great streaming boxes, but I would love to have more choices, and for more TV companies to do what the CW did, and allow people to watch their shows as they come out without a subscription to cable.  Nice work CW!

I am excited to see what the next generation of consoles will bring, but I am also scared that they will turn my living room in to a place where people are going to shout their social feeds at me.  If I can get what I want above, and be able to turn off the social media I will be a happy camper.

State of the Blog

It has been thirty days since my last blog status update, and I thought it would be fun to do another one.

It has been a good thirty days, I have now had 212 unique visitors to my site for 820 overall visits.  The average amount of time spent on the site is two minutes and thirty-eight seconds.  The Good Day to Die Hard review is still the most looked at page, but My Favorite Five Movies is catching up.  Also Tearto ZinZanni read the review about themselves, so that was kind of fun.

People who search and land on my site, are usually just searching for my site using as their keywords, but My Little Pony is the second most used term to find my site, followed by Batman.  However, most people follow my links from Facebook.

My site has been viewed in thirteen countries, and one person who is blocking their country code, but visits quite frequently.  The major two countries are obviously the US and Canada.

My traffic is pretty evenly split between smart phones and computers.  It is fun to see all the different types of phones hit my site.  Almost no one uses a Mac to view my site, in fact more people use Linux based PCs on my site then Macs.

It has been a lot of fun running this site, and if there is something you would like to see please let me know, and if you don’t have my contact info, I do read all the comments, so just leave one below.

Thanks for all your support!