April 24, 2004
Funny Video and Quote of the Moment
"You know, I just didn't feel like it. I mean, it was, it was a great day, it was beautiful out, the sun was shining, and...you know...I don't even play baseball...much less wanna kill someone with a baseball bat."
--from My Trip to Liberty City, a bit of GTA3 Machinima LAN3 pointed out, a video about exploring Grand Theft Auto 3's less violent side as a Canadian Tourist. (Machinima is (most often) the art of using the characters within a video game as puppets to do little dramas, frequently with a humorous or satirical bent--I think the article Spielbergs with a joystick has been making the rounds lately.) Peterman thought it was a one-note joke, but I thought it really said something about the beautiful worlds these games are making...one of the things that I think really makes GTA3 great (besides the chaotic antisocial violent mayhem) is it taking place in a city that feels like it has its own agenda, it doesn't feel like a place that was created just to have the game in...plus the video has some laugh out loud funny moments.
Of course, when I see a vending machine with empty slots, I'm always tempted to put in money and hit the empty slot just to see the mechanism work, repurposing the act of purchasing from the mere crass acquisition of snackfoods to a piece of performance art. So the idea of finding art accidentally makes sense to me.
Toys of the Moment
The BBC's Science and Nature: Human Body & Mind page has some very cool quizes. (I thought the What Kind of Thinker Are You? Quiz was a lot matter than the usual net quiz...(it said I was an "Interpersonal" thinker, which makes some level of sense.) But overall, the whole site has a ton of cool stuff, like a really good day at the science museum. (I found this via a boingboing link to its Disgust survey, and was impressed by the depth of the explanation of the hypothesis at the end.)
Speaking of those quizes, SpinnWebe's What Kind Of Quiz-Taker Are You? and associated quizes are pretty good as well.
Games of the Moment
Floats is another excellent and pretty orisinal game (there's like 50 of 'em now!) though it reminded me a bit much of Ranjit's game Loop. On the other hand, the experienced gamer knows there is almost nothing new under the sun. (UPDATE: Floats ends after 4 levels, it turns out. So in a way it's kind of nice that it has a (not easy to meet!) ending rather than just going on forever.)