Allow me to retort…

Ten Ton Hammer’s WoW site has posted The Top 5 Reasons World of Warcraft is the Best MMOG.

JuliusAs the title of my post says, allow me to retort.

They say: You are never alone in Azeroth

But you are alone… so very alone. Sure, every zone on every server has players in it, but most of them won’t talk to you, largely because they don’t need to. With the game being so eminently soloable, why bog yourself down with socializing? WoW has become the epitome of the alone together, or together alone, style of play. If you aren’t in a dungeon or on a raid, all those other people are just background.

They say: Endless content means endless fun in Azeroth

Even more, they say that most games give you a single quest chain that goes from zone to zone. Easy to hold against a new game… but WoW is nearly seven years old. And still… have you played it recently? While there may be many zones to choose from that are appropriate for your level, especially after Cataclysm, there still remains only 1 real quest chain to progress you through the story of the zone. Skip some quests and others won’t unlock, you have to start at the beginning of the zone and play through or else all is lost. And once you get to the top, unless you like starting over and forcing yourself to play classes and races that weren’t your first choice, you’ll start repeating content, endlessly. Welcome to the grind, leave your fun at the door.

They say: The value for your money is insane compared to modern standards

All MMOs, even ones that aren’t WoW, are insane values for your money. Once you’ve bought in to the $15 a month fee, you can play as much as you want. The question really is, what sort of value are you getting for your time? They choose Netflix to hold it up against, and for pure money, if you still subscribe to both disc mailing and streaming, WoW is cheaper. But if you go with just streaming, because honestly if you are a real MMO player then you’ve got a DSL, cable or other high-speed connection, now Netflix is half the price. And what will you do in WoW? Dungeon Finder? Battlegrounds? Like with the previous item, unless you like playing Alts, you’ll be repeating the same content over and over. With Netflix Instant, on the other hand, as long as you don’t crave watching only the newest releases, you can watch movies and TV from all genres. A little horror, some action, a romantic comedy with the significant other, a TV show you missed that all your friends say you should have watched, cartoons for yourself or with the kids, documentaries, and so much more. If you want, you can even repeat content over and over on Netflix. Every December I watch a couple dozen Christmas movies on Netflix, I’ve seen them before, but they’re still good. Value is where you find it.

They say: There is nothing like community

I can almost agree here. WoW’s community is HUGE. Which enables you to find a niche of it you enjoy, surround yourself with them and isolate yourself from the rest of the people who are out to ruin your game. Don’t want to play with spoilers? Too bad, the community is going to ruin that for you unless you play alone with all chat turned off. Want to role play? Better get on an RP server and then find a group or guild that likes to RP the same way you do or else you’ll find yourself at the butt end of jokes or power players. And for Pete’s sake, stay the hell away from the cesspool of the official forums… unless you like that sort of thing, in which case, go, join in, and accept that other people will hate you. Want to raid? Be prepared to play their way and install the add-ons they demand. Oh, and while we are on add-ons, what about PlayerScore… the add-on that lets people judge you before they even get to know you. There is nothing like community, but there is nothing like community. This is one of those strengths that are weaknesses deals.

They say: The game is the most complete experience available

The game is polished for sure. That’s what Blizzard does best. And leveling is easy, whether you want it to be or not (you might enjoy the low-level game, but you’ll need to repeat it with other characters, be overpowered for it, or actually consciously disable your experience gain to play it). And the classes are all well-defined and have their own flavor and niches… all which boil down to tank, healer, dps. The dungeon finder works by putting a tank, a healer and 3 dps characters together. And when you use it, forget about actually seeing the dungeon. Go go go! If you stop and smell the roses, you’ll find yourself booted out of the group. In the end though, I can’t disagree with this final point. WoW is the most complete experience available. It is filled with tons of good and tons of bad. You can enjoy it, and it’ll break your heart. It is fun and boring. It is everything you want, and everything you want to avoid, all at the same time, mostly because Blizzard wants to cater to everyone, despite everyone wanting something different, some in direct opposition to each other.

In the end, you should decide for yourself if World of Warcraft is worth playing, and I say this even to the people who are playing it right now. It is easy to play, almost, one might say, addicting. But ask yourself, “Is this really how I want to spend my time?” If it is, that’s fantastic! Do it, no judgments, as long as you’ve made that decision consciously and with forethought. But if it isn’t, do yourself a favor and step away, cancel (actually cancel, don’t just “not log in” while still paying for it), try some other games or some other activities. Make sure that if you are playing WoW it is because you want to play WoW, and not just because you haven’t taken the time to think of something you’d enjoy doing more.

There. I’m done preaching.


Trying an experiment this evening.  Should have posted this yesterday, but, alas, I did not.  Anyway, the idea goes like this:

Google Plus Netflix: a bunch of people watch the same movie at the same time though Netflix Instant and run a live text commentary on Google Plus.

This could be awesome.  This could suck.

My main impetus for doing this is the idea of the commentary, but in such a fashion that it was “recorded” but not a podcast, and possible so that if someone watches the movie later they can read the commentary on roughly the same pace.  Also, using a text medium like this means that there is no limit to the number of participants, so I’m hoping we get lots of voices, from the funny mocking tones to the knowledgeable remarking on production values.

Of course, the latter may be in short supply since I chose Birdemic: Shock and Terror as our inaugural film.

If you want to participate, go here.  The movie will start at 10 PM Eastern.

Aaah! Zombies!!

In my quest to fill time on the odd occasion the wife has to work on the weekend, I browse Netflix in search of movies that I know she has no interest in watching.  This past weekend I stumbled on Aaah! Zombies!!  Take a look…

As you can see in the trailer, the movie takes a unique approach to the genre.  When the film is in color the main characters appear alive and everyone around them is infected by something that makes them act funny and move rapidly.  When the film goes black & white we see things as they really are with the characters being zombies that are moving slowly while everyone else moves at a normal pace.

Overall the movie isn’t great, but it was good enough.  I enjoyed the hour and a half I spent watching it.  It’s available on Netflix Instant, so if you have the time and the inclination, check it out.

What I Read

I don’t maintain a blogroll here, or even links of any kind to other sites unless they are within posts.  However, in a fit of narcissism I decided that I would post a list of links to all the sites that are contained within my Google Reader.  So without further ado, presented here in alphabetical order, and in one giant ugly paragraph, is what I read:

.: Cedarstreet :., < witty title >, A Next-Gen-MMORPG, A Softer World, A Tree Falling in the Forest, Anyway Games, Applied Game Design, Basic Instructions, bbPress Blog, Bio Break, Brass Goggles, Brea Grant, Broken Toys, Clients From Hell, Coding Horror, Corvus & the IGDA, Crabapple Cove, Critical Distance, crowdSPRING Blog, Daily Dragon Online, daspetey, David Wellington, DESIGNER NOTES, Digital Diary Detailing Datamancer’s Deeds, Digital Gaming@Dragon*Con, Dinosaur Comics, DOGHOUSE, Don’t Fear the Mutant, Dragon*Con MMO, Dragon*ConTV, DragonCon, DreamHost Status, Eating Bees, Elder Game, Epic Slant, Ethos Incarnate, Experience Curve, Felicia Day, Fidgit, Fullbright, Fun in Games, Fun in Real Life, Game Design Concepts, Game Design Reviews, GARY WHITTA, Geek Girl in Training, Grim News, Grumpy Gamer, Hark, A Vagrant!, Heartless_ Gamer, I HAS PC, ihobo, indexed, International Game Developers Association Board, into survival., James Van Der Memes, Karnatos, Kieron Gillen’s Workblog, Kill Ten Rats, Killed in a Smiling Accident., Kung Fu Monkey, LevelCapped, Lost Garden, Man Bytes Blog, Middle and Up,,, Moo Tang Clan, Mumble, My Name Is Michael, National Novel Writing Month – Breaking News, Nerdist, Nerfbat, Netflix – New choices to watch instantly, Netflix Community Blog, Not Always Right | Funny & Stupid Customer Quotes, not much’a nothin’, On Beyond Zebra, One Of A Crowd, Online Games Are a Niche Market, Only a Game, Over00, PARA ABNORMAL – the comic, paulietoons,, Penny Arcade, Picture’s Up, Play Like a Girl, Popnarcotic, PostSecret, Psychochild’s Blog, PvPonline, Quarter to Three, Radioactive State, Rands In Repose, Raph’s Website, Real Life Comics, Running With My Eyes Closed, Scott Hartsman – Off the Record, screen play, Script Frenzy – The Beat, Sexy Videogameland, blogs, ShrinkGeek, ShutterDreams, Smed’s Blog, Stylish Corpse, Surviving The World, Symptom of a Greater Cure, T=Machine, Tami Baribeau, Teaching Game Design, Terra Nova, Texas State Word, That’s a Terrible Idea, The Ancient Gaming Noob, The Banstick, The Brainy Gamer, The Celtx Blog, The Common Sense Gamer, The GameDev Project, The Grouchy Gamer, The HoneyComb Engine, The Internet Crashed, The Mod Squad. Blog., The Oakstout, The Oatmeal – Comics, Quizzes, & Stories, The Office of Letters and Light, The Official DreamHost Blog!, The Psychology of Video Games, The Word of Notch, This Side… Down, Tish Tosh Tesh, Tobold’s MMORPG Blog, Twitter Blog, Undead Labs – News, Van Hemlock, We Fly Spitfires – MMORPG Blog, Welcome to Spinksville!, West Karana, WIL WHEATON dot NET: in exile, Wolfshead Online, WordPress Development Blog, Words from Ward, WorldIV,, You Got Red On You, You Might As Well Be Unemployed, zen habits, Zen of Design, Zombie Reporting Center

Make of this what you will.

Movie Round-Up: December 3rd, 2010

The Warrior's WayThe Warrior’s Way: (official site)

Next year the movies will be invaded by Cowboys & Aliens.  This year we get Cowboys & Ninjas.  This movie looks absolutely ridiculous, and that may be the thing that makes it a success.  I mean, the story is about a ninja assassin who is ordered to kill a baby that is the last member of a particular family.  He refuses and flees to America where he hides in a small town until the ninjas catch up with him to finish the job, kill the baby and kill him for his betrayal.  I highly doubt that I’ll go to the theater to see this movie, but it will make the top of my Netflix list because this movie must be seen.

The Round-Up posts are less fun when only one movie comes out.  Less photoshopping involved…

Movie Round-Up: November 12th, 2010

Unstoppable Morning Skyline GloryUnstoppable: (official site)

Train A loaded full of kids leaves the station heading east going 40 miles per hours.  At the same time Train B loaded full of deadly chemicals leaves the station heading west going 100 miles per hour with no breaks.  With both trains on the same track and neither one able to switch, how long will it take Denzel Washington and Chris Pine to save the day?  If your answer is between 90 minutes and 2 hours, you are correct!  Despite what at first glance (and second glance and third glance, and pretty much every glance, long look or deep meaningful stare) appears to be a silly silly movie, it does look like it will be full of action and excitement.  And honestly, Denzel is fun to watch even when he’s chewing scenery in bad films.  There must have eleven thousand free screenings of this film and I didn’t manage to get into a single one.  I really want to see this film, but that said I probably won’t catch it in the theater.  It will move straight to the top of my Netflix queue the moment it is available.

Morning Glory: (official site)

This movie looks funny and heart warming.  If the wife were to pick a movie to see this weekend, this would be it.  And I won’t even pretend to not want to see it.  The critics who don’t like it are saying things like it being “derivative” and “pandering to the lowest common denominator” which pretty much means that your average movie goer, the lowest common denominator who actually likes seeing the same stories told over and over in new settings with new actors, will love this film.

Skyline: (official site)

I want to play this game.  What?  It’s a movie?  Well, it looks cool, I guess.  No, seriously… this movie looks like a video game.  Aliens attack and you spend the next ten hours plastered to your TV with a controller in your hand trying to escape from and ultimately defeat the invaders.  If I were to pick a movie to see this weekend, this would be it.  But I may not need to as supposedly Skyline is part of a deal with Netflix to bring theatrical releases to Netflix sooner.  So I may save my $10 and wait for Netflix.  Or maybe I won’t.  We’ll just have to see…

Movie Round-Up: October 1st, 2010

Case 39: Let Me In The Social NetworkCase 39: (official site)

It’s nice to see Renée Zellweger return to her horror movie roots.  (Her first big role was in Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation.)  However, this movie was made in 2006, released in other countries last year and finally getting its US release now.  The US release was delayed a few times.  All those delays don’t speak of confidence in the film, so I’m worried this is going to suck.  I want to see it, because it does look a little bit interesting, but there is no way I’ll drop $10 to see it.  Netflix for sure.

Let Me In: (official site)

A remake of the film Let The Right One In.  I’ve had the original in my Netflix Instant queue for a while, but I have to really be in the mood for a foreign film.  Seeing as how I don’t speak any foreign language well enough to watch without English subtitles, a foreign film means more effort.  That said, I’ve heard it is incredible, and I really want to see it.  And I will… probably at some point after I’ve seen the remake.  I’m going to try my best to see this in the theater, but don’t know if I’ll make it.

The Social Network: (official site)

Facebook.  A place on the Internet that I both love and hate.  But this movie isn’t really about Facebook as much as it is about the personalities behind its creation, or at least the perception of the personalities from the outside.  But being directed by David Fincher and written by Aaron Sorkin, I can’t possible see how this is going to be anything less than good.  Early reviews are even saying that it’s great.  This movie will probably be the reason I don’t see Let Me In until next weekend.

Movie Round-Up: September 24th, 2010

You Legend of the Wall Virginity Street Hit Guardians AgainLegend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole:

3D animated owls.  Part of me just wants to shuffle this movie under the rug with all the other children’s fare that we’ve seen at the theaters.  Perhaps see it someday on Netflix when I’m bored.  On the other hand, this is Zach Snyder, director of the Dawn of the Dead remake, 300, Watchmen, and next year’s Sucker Punch (which does look totally wicked).  That alone has me wanting to go see this in the theater.  Plus, you know, 3D.

The Virginity Hit:

Two weeks, two films about virginity.  Easy A, to me, looked to be the better of the two films.  I’m not a huge fan of the mockumentary form of film unless it is done really well, and I’d rather watch them at home instead of at the theater.  So, this one gets a pass from me for now, but I’ll probably see it when it is available through streaming on Netflix.

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps:

Everything old is new again.  I’ll give these people props though, instead of remaking Wall Street they are doing a sequel.  I enjoyed the original, and despite the presence of Shia LaBeouf this movie actually looks like it might be pretty good.  Not $10 in the theater good, but I’ll definitely catch this on Netflix when it is available.

You Again:

The only film this week I’ve already seen, You Again is the story of a girl, Marni, who survived high school and a bully, Joanna, only to have her older brother be marrying that bully eight years later.  And if that isn’t enough, it turns out that Marni’s mother, Gail, was a high school rival of Joanna’s aunt, Ramona.  The twist being that while Marni was the loser of her generation, Gail was the winner of her’s.  It was a pretty funny movie, and I think women will definitely enjoy it more than men.  I’m not sure I’d want to spend $10 to see this, but I think I’d be happy if I’d seen it at matinée or early bird prices.

Movie Round-Up: September 17th, 2010

Easy Alpha Devil and the Omega Town AAlpha and Omega:

It’s a movie about a couple of lost wolves trying to get back to their families.  It’s a kid’s movie.  The trailer makes it look… typical.  I’m sure kids will enjoy it.


To understand where M. Night’s career might be headed, go here and watch the video.  He’s on a downward trend.  But I like monster movies.  So from the trailer we see people trapped in an elevator and some sort of thing is stalking them, which sounds really ridiculous when I say it.  Stalked?  In an elevator?  Then again, maybe this will work, maybe it will be good.  I think I’m going to wait for Netflix unless it gets some seriously awesome reviews.

Easy A:

This movie looks to be hilarious and possibly still have a heart as well.  The story is about a girl who helps out her gay friend by pretending they have sex so that other guys at school will stop picking on him.  This turns into her helping a number of other outcast guys with similar problems, earning her a reputation as a slut even though she’s not actually having sex with anyone.  I’m sure it will all turn out okay, but it’s the ride (pardon the pun) that will make this worth watching.  If I can find time and a few extra dollars, I’ll be off to see this at the theater.

The Town:

The only movie opening this week that I’ve already seen, The Town is the latest effort from Ben Affleck.  I’ve always thought he was a decent actor (especially when given good material), and as director of Gone Baby Gone he did admirably.  So I was pretty excited to see The Town, and it didn’t disappoint.  It was well directed, well acted, and well written.  The heist scenes were exciting, and the whole thing worked.  The only drawback to the film at all is the similarity it holds to the 1995 movie Heat.  But it has been 15 years since the release of Heat, so I don’t mind so much that The Town plays out almost like a remake.  Anyway, this movie is totally worth seeing.  Your $10 won’t be wasted here.

Movie Round-Up: August 13th, 2010

Eat Pray Love:

A woman’s journey to self-discovery. I’m not going to be first in line to see this, but I haven’t been disappointed by many of Julia Roberts movies so I’ll be sure to catch this on Netflix when it is available.

The Expendables:

I had an opportunity to see a screening of this, but a conflict prevented me. Given the cast of action stars and what I’ve seen in the trailer this is going to be one hell of a ride. If I can find the time, I’ll be seeing this this wekend.

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World:

I did see a screening of this, and it was great fun. As a long time gamer myself I loved the references and imagery. Outside that however the movie is a typical boy chases girl type of film. So if the gamer angle doesn’t appeal, you might want to skip it. As for me, I might go see it again.