The Last of Us

My last console was the original PlayStation. I’ve been a PC gamer since then, up until moving last year and leaving my desktop behind. Playing ‘The Last of Us’ on a PS3 tonight for the first time was a cinematic experience.

The storytelling. The sound design. The camera direction. The score. The use of vibration in the controller to convey certain things. The “cut scenes” are perfectly blended into gameplay, and I got that same feeling I did when playing ‘Bioshock’ for the first time, where I was watching the opening video and then nothing happens for a while. Then I realised the game had kicked in. The opening to ‘The Last of Us’ is that on steroids.

The emotion I felt was very real. The tenseness is on par with any film or TV show, and moreso because you’re in control of a character and the camera. I hesitantly approached each window or door, turning the camera at times so I wasn’t facing the window, avoiding the potential crash of glass. I was projecting my own fear and heightening the suspense due to my paranoid direction.

Even the gameplay tutorial is done in the most minimal, intuitive way possible.

I had to stop playing to write this down. From what I’ve read, I’m guessing my mind will continue to be blown.


My love affair with the 2D platformer


I’m not a gamer by any means, but one thing that dawned on me this morning is the love affair I’ve had with 2D platformers.

What is it about them?

They’re so simple in their controls, but provide an unparalleled amount of exhiliration, frustration and reward. The precarious wait, counting in your head, analysing the moving parts, looking for the obstacles, and then, JUMP! It’s magical.

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Rationalising my digital media purchases, or lack thereof

@juleshughan tweeted an interesting Guardian post titled In the digital era free is easy, so how do you persuade people to pay?, and it got me thinking about why I pay for some forms of digital media, and why I refuse to for others.

The article is a good read, and speaks of motivations, which is something I’ve been very interested in lately, but this list, or whatever the post will turn into, is a lot more, colloquial, I guess.

<time jump> I’ve ranted too much [yes, I’m jumping in time], so I’m going to just list my rationale / motivations—generalised—below, and if you’re still interested, you can read about why it was basically World of Warcraft that got me paying for digital media. </time jump>

Note: The following rationale may likely be highly irrational to some.

The short of it


  • Features [the social, multiplayer aspect in 99% of cases] not accessible through pirated copies
  • Ease of purchasing and the convenience of digital delivery
  • Supporting Indie developers


  • Supporting something I’m passionate about
  • It’s cheap
  • Convenience


Good luck trying to get me to pay for television.


Can’t justify it, and I’m more than doing my bit to support the movie industry by paying $20+ each week at the cinemas.

<time jump 2> Ok, I’m jumping in time again, but I realised I’d forgotten about mobile, and it feels a little different in my mind.

I would more than happily pay for an app I use regularly, but at this point in time, all my favourite, and most used apps, are free. In saying that, I do feel like, for whatever reason, I would hesitate / consider buying an app a lot more than I should, for the relatively small amount they cost. This Oatmeal comic sums it up  </time jump 2>

And now, a wordier version…

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So I had a Starcraft related dream last night…

I’m playing the game, it was a 2v2, and I could hear Chris’ voice saying “There’s nothing at the base! Nydus Worm!”

For the uninitiated [me being very newly educated on it], a Nydus Worm is this thing you can create at an opponent’s base that acts as an exit to a door, the entrance to which is at your base; you can pretty much throw a bunch of units and it’ll appear at their base and if they haven’t realised it’s there, they’ll be all “OMGWTFNOWAI”.

Anyway, I’d apparently built the structure at the opponent’s base, and I started moving all my army through the network from my end. I started moving them through, and then, suddenly, the game went from the top down view into first person perspective, and I became a part of the battle, and I was zooming through the Nydus Network along with the Zerg army.

I appear at the other base, AND EVERYTHING IS FUCKING GIGANTIC. Now, this was related to a discussion I was having with mates earlier this week about Terran marines actually being 9 ft, and zerglings being kinda gigantic too. I’m not quite sure where my imagination went after that, because there were GIANT COCKROACHES AND ZERGLINGS AND DISGUSTING SQUISHY THINGS EVERYWHERE, and I was standing on them.

Nothing would attack, and Chris was screaming “SELECT THEM! YOU HAVE TO SELECT THEM!”, so then I had to, umm, DOUBLE TAP one of the giant, squishy, disgusting cockroaches to select the whole lot of ’em, and yes, I was freaking out and disgusted.

I believe that is all, or maybe I’ve forgotten the rest. Needless to say, I’ve been a little obsessed with Starcraft II lately, and this is, the gigantic cherry cake on top of the already enormous cheesecake.




Did you ever play Grand Theft Auto on PC, load the mp3 directory with all your music, and just drive around for hours on end? Well, I sure did, and probably spent more time doing that in-game than anything else. I’ve missed that feeling, and I’ve missed my PC’s music library, while I’ve not-so-secretly been gettin’ comfortable with The Cloud servicing my musical needs. 

Well, no longer! I’ve just rediscovered my music library tonight, and fallen in love with it all over again thanks to AudioSurf!

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