Saturday, October 29, 2005

Have another piece of candy

1. Vivendi - the Big Bad Wolf?

I played King's Quest back in 1991-1992. The game survived through several versions and then Sierra Online decided that it was no longer interested in the King's Quest series. In light of this a group of fans of King Quest decided to take up the torch and write their own sequel to the game. They formed Phoenix Online Studios and began work on King's Quest IX as a fan game. A game written by fans for fans. The plan was to make the game freeware, available to all as a free download.

The first part of King's Quest IX was ready for release in December 2005 when they received a cease and desist letter from Vivendi Universal Games (owner of Sierra Online) and the project has been shut down. But there's folks itching to play that game. Who have been waiting with great anticipation for it. They have started an email/letter writing campaign to Vivendi.

Seem to me like Vivendi might want to take a peek at the game and see what their target market wants in an adventure game. They might learn at lot about what the King's Quest brand means to the people who play it. No better focus group in the world. It would endear them to the community and could revitalize the series.

2. Walking reenactment of Memento

I have lost my capacity to form short-term memories. Today, I find that I have forgotten yet another password for yet another account. I am locked out of the electronic journal subscriptions of my University. Lately, I get directions and immediately forget them, I write down phone numbers and misplace them, I make plans and forget where we are meeting. As the Dismemberment Plan says: "One too many blows to the head, left me for dead but still I fight on."

3. Hay is for horses

It's horse-day on NBC today. The U.S. Army rodeo and much horse racing. My Guy is mildly distressed. He wants to know why I am watching the "cruelty to animals games." I cannot vouch for the Rodeo. I hear terrible things about bull and bronc riding. And those 250 lb calves seem to hit the ground pretty hard during the Rope and Tie. I know there's riding crops being used in horse racing but for some reason I don't think of racing as cruelty to animals. The horses look beautiful when running and the racing has such a romantic component to it. With racehorses beyond strength and size there is always talk of the heart and character, the ways in which a horses personality effects the way it races. Perhaps this is a blind spot in my moral universe.

4. November is National Novel Writing Month.

It is in its 7th year.

"Participants begin writing November 1. The goal is to write a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by midnight, November 30."

"Because of the limited writing window, the ONLY thing that matters in NaNoWriMo is output. It's all about quantity, not quality. The kamikaze approach forces you to lower your expectations, take risks, and write on the fly."

What is not to love here?

5. Misty watercolor memories

The summer after 6th grade. I had a metallic kelly green huffy with a banana seat. I got up everyday and rode it to the Collinsville Public Library. I wandered the stacks and borrowed backpacks full of books. I stayed up way late reading them until I fell asleep. My dog Frisky followed me to the library and I got him a bowl of water for the heat and he waited outside until I was ready to go home. It was a great summer.

6. Firefly

Futuristic spaceship/smuggler/cowboy yarns where the people speak historical dialects of English and cuss in Chinese are the best.


juvenilia said...

i always liked king's quests 3, 4 and 6 the best, but i thought that 5 had the dreamiest graphics.

my brother learned how to read with 4. he wanted to play so badly but he could not read the words, so he forced himself to learn. it was priceless.

ergo said...

I abandoned KQ so early on I'm kinda curious to see what those games were like.

Cute story. Self education simply requires the right motivation. =)

juvenilia said...

i remember nothing of the first two because i got in on the 3rd one. it was cool, but i had a hell of a time getting off the mountain, which is basically the beginning of the game. the 4th one was fun because it was well-written and full of fairy tale references. the 5th one had stunningly beautiful graphics, being at the early end of watercolor-like graphic games. after that, they got a bit too cartoony for me.

the funniest part of the shanny story is that even though we knew he knew how to read (because we watched him learn and watched him play), he refused to admit it in school. consequently, he repeated a grade. because he's a stubborn ass.