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Tycho / on Wed, May 4 2005 at 4:30 am

Our Whimsical God, Part One

Oh, it’s quite true - Dr. Raven Darktalon Blood has been optioned and will now be smeared across movie screens worldwide, with no thought of how they will eventually remove it.  I’m speechless, in the way that makes a person go on and on.  And what’s more, he must have had the foresight to cut me out a year ago, because I’m nowhere to be found in that strip’s credits.  I said I’d go down with him to the studio and see how things are coalescing, but told him that if his “vision” manifests itself as boiling human waste it’s only because it tried to stay true to the source material.

I played through the Resurrection of Evil expansion pack they put out for Doom, and as the only person I know who enjoyed Doom 3 I really appreciate their going to all the trouble.  I had imagined that the pack would include concessions to the Flashlight Lobby, those players who utilize mods to make common weapons project light, but it was not to be so.  Since it was one of the major complaints regarding the first game, I don’t know if their reticence to resolve it is evidence of firm resolve or stubbornness.

It’s pretty fantastic as expansions go.  I found the addition of their version of the gravity gun, “The Grabber,” somewhat distasteful reading about it initially - but it’s nowhere near the game focus as it is in Half-Life 2.  Outside of a couple bosses, it’s basically up to you whether or not you want to use it - and for me, it didn’t see a lot of use.  I used it mainly to grab a powerup from across the room, my realspace sloth somehow able to project into the digital realm.  The grabbing thing isn’t the main addition anyhow, it’s a disgusting artifact that you infuse with new powers as you go along.  Ultimately, these powers let you smash just about anything and take no damage while doing so, so used judiciously even the final boss can be sundered with the convenience we expect from modern living.  I need to try it on a harder level to see if that holds through, but I know that just a step below it, it was the servants of hell who felt fear and not their mortal despoiler.       

I enjoyed Doom 3, and at the time I thought I had sufficient hardware to bridle that beast and ride it into town, but I know now that was not the case.  As I might have mentioned I made a ridiculous purchase rebuilding my machine a month or so ago in the shape of an ATI X800.  It’s not top of the line, those days were over once they started asking six hundred dollars, but it is the crown that imbues this machine with vigor renewed.  I had not actually seen the game I’d beaten prior to this, and have begun the journey anew.  The second time the lights went out and I ran panting behind my sentry droid through some monstrous hive is absolutely a top ten gaming moment, and had the rig not been so willing to comply it might not have been so. 

The thing that excited me and to some extent drove me through the game was something they hadn’t intended, I don’t think.  As I suggested before, this installment of the franchise deals primarily with a hideous, unnatural artifact and its unseen role in the original game.  The animation Nerve cooked up for your exposure to this thing was extremely compelling, and appeared to communicate terror, wonder, and desire simultaneously.  I wanted to badly for there to be a full-on Lovecraft style “mortal overcome by eldritch power” thing, a sci-fi horror story with some real meat, and it was this odd expression that revealed a new way of thinking about a Doom series with a genuine narrative.  This did not occur.  If Doom is revisited anytime soon, what are the chances, but that idea has its hooks in and I can’t get them out.

(CW)TB out.

walk across my swimming pool


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