HYPERGIANT
A ‘shopping job I did on a Breaking Bad promotional image, combining it with the magic of Alternate Reality’s King that Never Was.

It’s been sitting unfinished for months, so I gave it a ‘lil coat of polish and exported it for your viewing pleasure.  I think one of the most awesome parts is the fact that both Aluminum and Rhenium are metal elements.

A ‘shopping job I did on a Breaking Bad promotional image, combining it with the magic of Alternate Reality’s King that Never Was.

It’s been sitting unfinished for months, so I gave it a ‘lil coat of polish and exported it for your viewing pleasure.  I think one of the most awesome parts is the fact that both Aluminum and Rhenium are metal elements.

lunacyoflegomanvalues:

For a while I was trying to figure out whether this was typical System elitist bullshit or an actual furry making some sort of really bizarre analogy
But then I saw the entire comments section and that pretty much earned it a spot on the Lunacy alone

As the guy that posted the image, I found it odd that its view count had recently spiked.  Admittedly, it’s not all that funny, nor is its pithiness succinct, but a lack of background is partially to blame for this. Here I will give an overly detailed account regarding the creation and posting of this image:

Back in 2009, when the image was posted, there was a small gathering of builders on Flickr that absolutely hated Bionicle with a passion, the type that senselessly subscribed to, as lunacyoflegomanvalues describes it, “System elitist bullshit.”
Somewhere in one of Flickr’s many Lego-related groups, there was a thread mocking said “System elitists.” A commenter made some sort of comparison/analogy about “being a Bionicle builder within Lego fandom at large” being similar to “being a furry in society at large.”  I whipped up the above image in a minute or two, saved it to Flickr, and posted it in the thread, merely as an extension of the “joke.”
I have no idea where the thread went, however. It’s likely that it was in the group “Lego 16+” which Flickr shut down (and subsequently spawned the AFOL 16+ group).  I also have no idea where I’d nabbed the Bionicle picture, but I’m sure it was from another Flickr member, in on the joke or otherwise. My misspelling of “building” was intentional, which again I’m guessing was somehow part of the thread’s joke.  The picture wasn’t really meant to be seen or understood outside of the thread, but since I stupidly kept the image open to the public, and therefore to the entirety of the internet, I should have expected this would happen at some point.

Do I hate Bionicle? Of course not.  As (primarily) Bionicle builder Arpy commented on the photo page, “It’s also true that most of the Bionicle MOCs out there are built by kids who are on average much younger than those who build with System.”
That’s only logical.  Hating another builder based solely on their choice of pieces/construction method is almost self-parodying, following the same illogic as hating someone for their skin color, sexual orientation, or hell, their geographic location.
But, like I said, since I didn’t pay attention to my privacy settings and the “joke” was ultimately unclear, someone overreacted to it.  The commenter “LewiTaur” is/was a Bioncle builder and “furry artist” (as he describes on his Flickr profile) that (understandably) didn’t see the context and took offense.  I was less understanding however of the reaction that ensued, which was to comment angrily on the image, which only served to provoke the rest of the page’s commenters. Had he asked me politely to take the image down, I would have, as it wasn’t intended to be a slight against furries.
Again, the context is hard to grasp because there are deleted comments on the photo page, and also because I advised Lewi to speak to me through Flickr’s “FM” message system. His private message to me was more or less the same as what he wrote on the photo page, so I’ll just show select quotes from my own private response (I was a little more scornful than I should have been, mostly because I was irritated with him):

"You have brought this ridicule upon yourself. If you had come to me with this message from the beginning instead of complaining publicly on my photostream, I would have been happy to explain to you the joke and maybe even apologized. However, since you chose not to do so, and chose to comment with your own hostility, you incited the derision of others that commented on the page. There was also my confusion as to why you added the page to your favorites. If you read my response to your first comment, you will see that I made the assumption that you got the joke and were jokingly complaining. Please note that in my comments to you, I have not made a single jab at you or furries. As Dano said, ‘I’ve never seen David [my name] call anybody a ___fag…’ Which is true. I have no hostility whatsoever towards you excluding my irritation at your recent actions on my photostream.
My advice is that you do not comment again on my motivational poster. Mute the activity you see on it and let it be. If you do, there will be no further comments from you for the others to respond to, and the ridicule will stop. If you decide to continue commenting in anger despite my explanation, I will post this response on my photostream to facilitate the opinions of the Lego community as a whole on this matter. My apologies for the misunderstanding, and my hopes this situation can end as easily as possible.
If you have anything else to say, please FM me.”

So, I hope that helps to clear things up.  Personally, I just don’t get furries or the “furry culture,” but I’m not particularly hateful of them in any way.  As a person that crossdresses at anime conventions (exclusively, mind you), I try not to zealously condemn others without reason, that reason likely being derived from a personal stake or similar situation.

lunacyoflegomanvalues:

For a while I was trying to figure out whether this was typical System elitist bullshit or an actual furry making some sort of really bizarre analogy

But then I saw the entire comments section and that pretty much earned it a spot on the Lunacy alone

As the guy that posted the image, I found it odd that its view count had recently spiked.  Admittedly, it’s not all that funny, nor is its pithiness succinct, but a lack of background is partially to blame for this. Here I will give an overly detailed account regarding the creation and posting of this image:

Back in 2009, when the image was posted, there was a small gathering of builders on Flickr that absolutely hated Bionicle with a passion, the type that senselessly subscribed to, as lunacyoflegomanvalues describes it, “System elitist bullshit.”

Somewhere in one of Flickr’s many Lego-related groups, there was a thread mocking said “System elitists.” A commenter made some sort of comparison/analogy about “being a Bionicle builder within Lego fandom at large” being similar to “being a furry in society at large.”  I whipped up the above image in a minute or two, saved it to Flickr, and posted it in the thread, merely as an extension of the “joke.”

I have no idea where the thread went, however. It’s likely that it was in the group “Lego 16+” which Flickr shut down (and subsequently spawned the AFOL 16+ group).  I also have no idea where I’d nabbed the Bionicle picture, but I’m sure it was from another Flickr member, in on the joke or otherwise. My misspelling of “building” was intentional, which again I’m guessing was somehow part of the thread’s joke.  The picture wasn’t really meant to be seen or understood outside of the thread, but since I stupidly kept the image open to the public, and therefore to the entirety of the internet, I should have expected this would happen at some point.

Do I hate Bionicle? Of course not.  As (primarily) Bionicle builder Arpy commented on the photo page, “It’s also true that most of the Bionicle MOCs out there are built by kids who are on average much younger than those who build with System.”

That’s only logical.  Hating another builder based solely on their choice of pieces/construction method is almost self-parodying, following the same illogic as hating someone for their skin color, sexual orientation, or hell, their geographic location.

But, like I said, since I didn’t pay attention to my privacy settings and the “joke” was ultimately unclear, someone overreacted to it.  The commenter “LewiTaur” is/was a Bioncle builder and “furry artist” (as he describes on his Flickr profile) that (understandably) didn’t see the context and took offense.  I was less understanding however of the reaction that ensued, which was to comment angrily on the image, which only served to provoke the rest of the page’s commenters. Had he asked me politely to take the image down, I would have, as it wasn’t intended to be a slight against furries.

Again, the context is hard to grasp because there are deleted comments on the photo page, and also because I advised Lewi to speak to me through Flickr’s “FM” message system. His private message to me was more or less the same as what he wrote on the photo page, so I’ll just show select quotes from my own private response (I was a little more scornful than I should have been, mostly because I was irritated with him):

"You have brought this ridicule upon yourself. If you had come to me with this message from the beginning instead of complaining publicly on my photostream, I would have been happy to explain to you the joke and maybe even apologized. However, since you chose not to do so, and chose to comment with your own hostility, you incited the derision of others that commented on the page.

There was also my confusion as to why you added the page to your favorites. If you read my response to your first comment, you will see that I made the assumption that you got the joke and were jokingly complaining. Please note that in my comments to you, I have not made a single jab at you or furries. As Dano said, ‘I’ve never seen David [my name] call anybody a ___fag…’ Which is true. I have no hostility whatsoever towards you excluding my irritation at your recent actions on my photostream.

My advice is that you do not comment again on my motivational poster. Mute the activity you see on it and let it be. If you do, there will be no further comments from you for the others to respond to, and the ridicule will stop. If you decide to continue commenting in anger despite my explanation, I will post this response on my photostream to facilitate the opinions of the Lego community as a whole on this matter.

My apologies for the misunderstanding, and my hopes this situation can end as easily as possible.

If you have anything else to say, please FM me.”

So, I hope that helps to clear things up.  Personally, I just don’t get furries or the “furry culture,” but I’m not particularly hateful of them in any way.  As a person that crossdresses at anime conventions (exclusively, mind you), I try not to zealously condemn others without reason, that reason likely being derived from a personal stake or similar situation.

Is it just me, or does Kevin Murphy, in the above photo, look a bit like John Petrucci?

Is it just me, or does Kevin Murphy, in the above photo, look a bit like John Petrucci?


Collector’s Curse… Part One

In spiritual succession to my second post, I bring you yet another video game-related post (it’s as if I have nothing better to talk about!).

Actually, it’s not really a spiritual successor at all. It’s pretty much the same exact thing.  Last time I chose to celebrate the purchase of a game and game series that require gaming hardware that I do not yet own (Nintendo DS and Wii).  This time, the DS and Wii list has grown a bit, and even a new tier has been added!

If you know me at all, you’ll know that I am fond of the Assassin’s Creed series of games (more on this in an upcoming post). Having completed the first, second, and third games, and buying one of the new comics, I’ve been eager to play more and learn more of the franchise’s universe.  In the clearance area of a local Wal-Mart I found, and subsequently bought, Assassin’s Creed II: Discovery for the DS.  My DS library has grown to a whopping two titles.

While I have only completed Fusion and played with a handful of other Metroid titles, I consider myself a mild fan of the series (meaning, I feel that I’ll be a fan of it once I, you know, beat more of the games).  Over at Best Buy I discovered a used copy of Metroid Prime 3: Corruption for only $19.  I swept it up, brought it home, and now I own an almost completely unblemished copy of the game.

Continuing the same theme, Atlus’ Trauma series of games seems like it would appeal to me, but I’ve never experienced even a second of gameplay.  That may soon change (when I get a Wii) with my Target clearance acquisition of Trauma Team for $8.  My Wii collection has doubled to four titles.

I also mentioned in my second post that the next generation of portable gaming (Nintendo 3DS and Sony NGP) is just about at hand.  What I did not mention was the price drop that the PSP has recently undergone with the news of Sony’s new handheld.  My course of action for buying the NGP is different from the 3DS, as it seems all DS and DSi titles are compatible with the 3DS hardware.  I may pick up a normal DS to replace my translucent pink, unbacklit GBA (despite the fact I have a perfectly fine Gamecube Game Boy Player) and to test out add-on accessories like the DS Rumble Pak, but I’ll only do such a thing when I get a DS game that needs an external peripheral.

The situation for the NGP is different.  I will almost certainly have to get a PSP before I procure an NGP. If the minute section devoted to the subject on Wikipedia is true (check the provided sources? What the hell are you on about?), the NGP will utilize a new physical distribution medium called NVG.  In reading the proposed specs for the NGP, it’s clear only a last-minute decision would lead to the addition of a complex, mechanical UMD drive to the system.  This is a bit of a problem.  While the NGP is apparently backwards-compatible with old PSP games, the lack of UMD would make this a viable option only for those that like to download their games (I, for whatever reason, do not count myself as one) from PSN.  Beyond my general obsessive compulsions to collect and visually organize things, requiring me to have a physical copy of the game, I want a PSP because certain games I really want to play are currently, and may forever remain, UMD-only.

In my usual fashion, I’m simply prefacing the fact that my game library has expanded to include PSP titles.

Target had a very brief sale on PSP games recently, and I was able to snag Gran Turismo for $15 and Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker for $20.  Weeks later, at Goodwill, I bought Assassin’s Creed: Bloodlines for $15. The very same day I bought Wipeout Pulse at Wal-Mart for $15 or so.

In my PSP buying frenzy, I ended up buying Daxter and the Invizimals Entertainment pack from Amazon. As I had mentioned before, I’ve been marathoning the Jak and Daxter series, and now with Daxter, my acquisition of the series will be complete! If only I could play the game for the marathon… Oh well.

Last but not least is the Invizimals Entertainment Pack.  Wait… Entertainment Pack?  Oh, well, I guess I can play all of these games now.

Yeah, don’t ask.

Well, you can, and then I’ll explain in detail.

WHAT IS YOUR EARLIEST HUMAN MEMORY?

Human?

I think the debate is over, gentlemen.






Note: The debate is not over, gentlemen.

I think the debate is over, gentlemen.

Note: The debate is not over, gentlemen.

FOOTBAWL

So, this post is six days late, as it was originally intended for “everyone’s” favorite Sunday event. I tell you, it was going to be hilarious. It was going to be titled “TOUCHDOWN!” and then I’d pull a fast one and show a picture of Travis Touchdown, the protagonist of the-

-series, so that I could celebrate the purchase of my first two Wii games ever (despite the fact that I do not yet own the console, though I own many others).  You and I both missed out, I know.

I will eagerly await the next few months when I have sufficient pocket change to purchase a new Wii for myself (though I personally am uninterested in the Wii Resort or Sports games, and would love a price reduction on the system if I could get it without them), so that I may play, experience, and review both No More Heroes and No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle (which I pronounce, “Des-per-ah-tay Stroo-glay,” like some sort of Southern European superhero alter-ego (I’ll need to take a breath after that sentence)).  In the meantime, I have another game series that I am marathoning (to the best of my ability) to review, but I’ll get to that in a moment.

Continuing in the vein of software that I have purchased but do not have the necessary hardware to play, I recently purchased my first Nintendo DS title at my local Meijer. 

I was drawn to Izuna 2 partially because of its cute style of artwork, partially because of its $14.99 price tag, partially because I’d never heard of it, and partially because of the humongous breasts of its titular character.  …Maybe not in that order.  Needless to say, I have yet to play it, but upon reading the Wikipedia entry for the game, I discovered that it wasn’t quite what I assumed it would be.  It’s been a very long time since I’ve played an old school “rougelike” dungeon crawler (to the point that I can’t even remember the last one I seriously played), and I’m not sure how good I would be at one now.  This hasn’t extinguished my enthusiasm for the game, however.  I have added the first Izuna to my Amazon wishlist, and once I have my mitts on a 3DS, I’ll finally be able to try them out.

Which brings me to the 3DS (and, in context, to Sony’s NGP).  I know that lately the issue of short battery life (hovering around 3-5 hours) has “marred” the two new handheld systems’ prospects to a point.  While it’s certainly a logical step to compare the battery life of the next-gen handhelds to those of the previous generation, it seems like a ludicrous and, dare I say “all too easy” route to knock them for (which I also call having a Sankaku Complex, or Sankaku Complexing). 

Yes, 3-5 hours seems paltry compared to the approximate eight hours or so you’d get with a normal DS, but it seems no one it taking into account the change in hardware.  Handheld games, a huge part of our generation’s gaming advancement, have advanced an immense amount since the times we played on 160 X 144 pixel, black-and-white screens.  Battery life and efficiency (not to mention affordability and convenience (i.e., weight, ghosting, etc.)) do not necessarily follow transistors and microchips in the exact same linear path through Moore’s Law.  Is it likely that the the battery life will be improved with smaller nanometer processes and better batteries on the inevitable succeeding iterations of the 3DS and NGP? Of course, but is it really that big of a deal now?

Don’t take my criticism the wrong way, of course.  If the battery life can be improved or extended while keeping the all-important convenience of a handheld’s size and ergonomics intact, I would have no complaints.  I myself would be super pissed if, say, my cell phone only had a four hour life span (which was one of my main reasons to knock the iPhone when it was first launched, but I have now shifted to far better reasons to hate it), though I will concede that my Palm Pre’s battery is, in two words, fucking ridiculous.


But, I digress.  I’m not talking about cell phones, I’m talking about gaming devices.  Metal Gear Solid 4 taught me well that I should take a 15 minute break every hour that I played a game, a lesson that I promptly ignored as I played it for 8+ hour stretches, all the while eating salty snacks and drinking my diabeetus juice.  I’ve never had a problem doing such a thing (no offense to those that actually get sick doing that sort of thing), but what needs to be taken into account is how I played it.  Normal home consoles have very few caveats regarding power consumption, at least when you compare them to handhelds.  The PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii all are designed to be hooked up to external displays and sound amplifiers, which ideally are powered separately from the console.  Your typical gaming setup will range somewhere between a 12 inch to 36 inch display with mono up to 7.1 channel sound (I myself use a 32” monitor and a 5.1 surround sound setup).

Both the display and the amplifiers for normal home systems are engineered to be used in a certain manner.  Home speakers, TV-mounted or otherwise, are designed to provide the optimal amount of sound pressure for its intended purpose, which is usually to provide sound for a whole room (and if not, a segment of the room).  Televisions are meant to be viewed from an optimal distance of, on average, at least four feet away (I am aware this isn’t always the case, as I myself am usually around three feet away from my own TV).  The point I’m trying to make is that I could play MGS4 for over eight hours straight because I was comfortable.  How comfortable is physically holding two three-inch screens near your face for hours, especially comparing that to sitting in a chair with a light controller perched on your lap while looking straight ahead at a normal TV?

Even if our newfangled toys, the 3DS and NGP, had 8+ hours of battery life, would you actually want to play a modern (3D graphics, 3D screen, complex controls, etc.) handheld game for that long?  For even five hours?  And even if you did, you must deal with the general nature of handheld consoles.  These devices are desirable because they can be taken anywhere, their games played everywhere.  But that means you need desirable places outside your home to play your games, locations where you’ll not only be physically comfortable (are you seated well?) and mentally comfortable playing (feel like taking your new $250+ electronic gadget for a public display on the streets of your local metropolis?), but you need a place where you’ll have ample time to play.  This is why I’m a little dubious with the launch of Metal Gear Solid 3 on the 3DS.  Yes, the graphics are great, especially with 3D, and the game is great regardless, but will I have time outside of my home to play a game that’s half interaction, half cutscenes?

My situation certainly is not the norm, but I’ll use it as an example, regardless.  From where I live, a train ride to Chicago takes a little over an hour.  Long, boring waits like lines and train, plane, and car rides are great for handheld games, right?  The issue is that I normally go to Chicago for reasons other than whipping out a game and playing for hours, so that hour or so I could spend gaming during the ride could potentially leave me with another couple hours of fun distraction later.  An interstate trip could possibly leave many hours of nothingness that could be filled by a game, but beyond the fact that a car can power a gaming device via an adapter, I personally would get fatigued staring at a 3 inch screen that’s crammed between my hands, which I’ll have to keep up for as long as I’m playing, all the while being jostled by the swaying of the car and bumps in the road.  Of course, we could always play these games at home with an adapter so we would never have to worry about battery life, but that seems to be an affront to people that want their mobile gaming, especially since we don’t seem to have better things to worry about.

And so now I go back to Izuna.  I don’t feel that the random, high difficulty dungeoncrawliness of it all will turn me off of the game.  Honestly, and this is simply preference, when I look to a handheld game, I am looking for a distraction.  Of course I love a good story and/or good gameplay, and I have no problem with having them outside of the house, but I don’t feel that I could set aside time for playing such games when I’m out of the house.  If I find that I can slowly advance in the game while keeping myself occupied when needed, I’ll be happy.

So, if you’ve read this far, thank you.  I apologize for my normal writing style (long sentences and gratuitous use of parentheses (Woot! (Amen to that!))), and the fact that stream-of-consciousness and a lack of editing has led this post to go far beyond my original size constraints.  I have a few future posts pending.

As I mentioned earlier, I am marathoning a game series.  My first marathon review will be the Jak and Daxter franchise.  With the purchase of The Lost Frontier for PS2, I decided to complete all the games.  I have completed Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy (for the first time ever, too!), and have nearly completed Jak II.  After that, I must finish Jak 3, Jak X: Combat Racing, and Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier.  Daxter, sadly, is excluded from this marathon as I do not have the necessary hardware to play it.

A later post, following my completion of Fate/stay night’s Heaven’s Feel route and review of my Psychology material (especially Freudian theory) will actually be the first post that I wanted to have on Tumblr, but I wanted to make sure I knew a little bit about what I was talking about.

Well, so long for now!

Blagged: Robbed

  Now that it’s been about two weeks since I first got a Tumblr account, it’s about time I post something to this blag, right?

  Welcome to Hypergiant.  I typically appear online with the moniker “Blue Star” (or some derivative thereof) whenever able, but I’ve become so sick of typing in “Blue Star” for a new account name, only to see the phrase “We’re sorry, but this username has already been taken” (or some derivative thereof), that I’ve resorted to, well, using other names.  I suppose I just don’t have it as easy as some people that, say, like to incorporate the word “orca” in their usernames (cough).

  Hypergiant is one of two names that I currently use in lieu of Blue Star, the other being BUXBEAM, of the proud lineage of “Bad Scrabble Hands.”   Since no one, save for a select few, seems to understand the magic of BUXBEAM and company (NEXRANS, SUDAXAK, DUXULIA, etc.), Hypergiant seems to be the most viable alternative available to me.

  I was hoping to cling onto the Blue Star name well into when I had started my own business, but my hopes were quickly dashed when it came time, while writing a business plan for my Entrepreneurship class, to name my venture.  I won’t go link-heavy on you, dear reader, but suffice it to say that the world does not need another “Blue Star” business.  Oddly enough, “Hypergiant” doesn’t seem to be a popular word among business owners, and I had adopted it as the placeholder name for my business plan, and later wholly accepted it as the name of my future business.

  I can’t remember the origins of my connection to the Blue Star name, but I continue to use it because of my infatuation with the color blue, but also because of its symbolization of power.  Blue stars are classified within the O-A range.  They are some of the hottest, brightest, and most massive of all stars.  When writing my business plan, due to my infatuation, I wanted to keep the word “blue” somewhere.  “Blue Giant,” however, didn’t roll off the tongue as nicely as I would have liked, not to mention that it was already goddamn taken.  Blue Giant Productions sounded even worse.  And then while perusing Wikipedia, I realized that the term Hypergiant was perfect.  Granted, not all hypergiants are blue stars, but the name “Blue Hypergiant” was the worst thing to ever happen to my vocal cords.

  Completely different, but containing some of the flavor of the name past, Hypergiant is the derivative (thereof) of Blue Star that everyone will come to know and… Know.

  And now you know.  Hopefully I didn’t put you to sleep with my oddly-worded, overly-long sentences.