Video Games

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

Did Video Games Make Me More Productive This Weekend?

I’ll start by mentioning that I stopped following video games in high school. The two systems I really owned and played were SNES and N64. I played a ton of both through high school and Mario Kart for N64 proved to be a big dorm room game in college. We even ended up playing Kart 64 at my bachelor party. But I couldn’t tell you the first thing about any platform created after 1998.

Typically, I keep my games packed away. On the rare occasion that I’ve got someone to race against, I’ll take the time to set up the system. This is partially strategic. I tend to get very sucked into things and I don’t need yet another distraction in my life. A couple weekends ago, at my wife’s suggestion, I visited Arisia, and sci-fi con of sorts local to Boston. They had a room set up for video games, complete with an NES, SNES, Sega, and N64. The game selection was small, but I was still a kid in a candy store. I also felt like I had given myself permission to play all I wanted. I’d paid my admission to the event, it was up to me how I spent it.

A week later, I see an old elementary school friend and his brother share on Facebook a video explaining a glitch in Super Mario World for SNES. This is arguably my favorite SNES game, and the one game I was ever really a pro at. I didn’t think anyone cared about the game and I also didn’t think there was anything else for me to learn about the game. I then fell down one of the deepest YouTube holes of my life. I watched speedruns, I watched glitch explanation; matter of fact I’m still a few episodes into a 50-something part series explaining glitches in every level. This was how I spent my commute time all this week. I was that jerk on the T who was totally absorbed in his phone. And I wasn’t even playing the game. I was just watching. As this weekend arose, I knew I had to play. (more…)

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Casual Misogyny Ruins a Great Song: Patent Pending’s “Hey Mario”

Dear Patent Pending,

I’m not angry, I’m just disappointed.

I’m a big fan of the band. Really. I remember seeing you in small halls in CT when Gary booked you. I think the song Douchebag brilliantly calls out jerks. I think She Only Wants My Blood is clever in an MTX kind of way. Spin Me Around and One Less Heart to Break practically made me cry.

So obviously, I was totally stoked for your new video. In fact, in this moment, I’m still stoked. I’ve already watched it three times.

And I’m watching the video, rocking out… and the line about “chasing this %$&@ forever” comes. Okay, you bleeped it out, you knew it was wrong. But, the line “ain’t never let a ho get em down” stopped me in my tracks. Was it really necessary? It wasn’t. (more…)