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Tycho / on Fri, May 29 2009 at 12:00 am

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I’m the kind of Zune fan that doesn’t sound much like a Zune fan, the molotov toting aggressor motivated by deep conviction that things can be better than they are.  For the most part reviled, either for having the hubris to challenge Apple dominion or for trying to shoehorn their way into yet another market, Microsoft’s device acquits itself well when taken on its own terms.

The Zune is J Allard‘s baby now, which is part of the reason I continue to stoke the home fires.  We met him once, a long time ago, at some press thingy for the launch of Xbox Live.  He insulted us, or maybe just me, and I was overjoyed to see something approximating honesty at such a wild west backlot bullshit facsimile.  If he could be honest with me, under those circumstances, I suspected that he might be capable of honestly elsewhere.

Anyway, I think I might actually have something like anticipation fatigue for this E3.  That’s where you get something asinine like this comic - my enthusiasm is utterly wrung out.  The suspense has been punctured by so many leaks, sneak peeks, and early trailers released to escape the din of the show itself that this once glorious gaming holiday has essentially been sold for parts.

We had another comic about Infamous, one I liked, but Gabriel gunned it down.  When I spoke on the game earlier, I specifically left out any mention of the writing so that I could devote an entire post cataloging every deformity of its tainted carapace.  The urge to do this is draining away, though, even as I construct the introductory paragraph.  Let’s just get it over with.

It’s so bad that they must have meant it to be bad, but it isn’t so bad that it reverses polarity and becomes sublime.  That’s a fairly complex trick to pull off, and when you don’t manage it, you end up with something like Infamous: not a celebration of the comic book form, but a stern indictment of it.  The alignment scenarios they cook up here - the ones Gamespot calls “Powerful moral choices” - are the most contrived parodies of ethics to be found this side of some silent movie mustache twirler, villainously astride the tracks, bound virgin in tow.  Under optimal circumstances, I should not “LOL” when presented with a game’s penultimate decision - but really, they give you no choice.

(CW)TB out.  

the only way to beat it

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