Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Spider-Man 3 is the worst movie in the history of movies.

I decided to take a break from PixelJunk Eden to watch Spider-Man 3 again.

What the hell was I thinking?

Let's rewind back to May 4, 2007, the day a piece of me died.

Spider-Man was awesome. Spider-Man 2 was awesome. The trailers for Spider-Man 3 have been badass, and now I'm sitting in the theater at the premiere with a row of my friends. I'm fucking giddy. This must be what heaven feels like.

Then the movie started.

One hundred and thirty-nine excruciating minutes later and the credits began to roll, but no one stood up to leave. The whole theater just sat there in complete silence. No one looked anyone else in the eyes, and it was painfully obvious why: they had just been sodomized.

Eventually I stood up and did the only thing I could do. I took my friend's straw, stabbed my eyes out, and then jammed it into my throat to end my misery.

If only.

No, finally a guy near the front stood up and said "Spider-Man 3 is the worst movie in the history of movies," and walked out. Everyone else began to follow him, but I just sat there wondering, what the hell happened? They must have known how bad that was when they were filming it. Obviously there is no god.

Fast forward to a few hours ago. A friend left his copy of Spider-Man 3 here and I thought I'd give it another shot, that maybe I'd just had unrealistic expectations before and enough time had passed. How wrong I was.

Let's do a quick countdown of the three worst things about Spider-Man 3:

3. Topher Grace

I like Topher Grace. I do. He was funny on That 70s Show and he was even pretty good in that one movie with Dennis Quaid. But Topher Grace had no business playing Venom. He's super skinny and he's not scary at all.

Before the Venom transformation, he was decent when contrasted with Tobey Maguire's embarrassing performance, but once he donned the black, it was a train wreck. He tried to make the role funny with clever quips and corny jokes like holding up Mary Jane and saying "my spidey sense is tingling... if you know what I mean."

What an awful casting job.

2. Worst Ending Ever
At the end of the movie, Venom dies in a cheesy explosion, Harry dies from being exposed to too many cliches, and Spider-Man and Sandman have a heart to heart about how much their lives suck until they both start crying, Spider-Man forgives him, and Sandman literally just flies away into the sunrise.


So Sandman is still an escaped convict wanted for murdering Peter Parker's uncle, robbing a bank and a security van, causing millions of dollars in property damage, at the very least endangering the lives of countless citizens if not killing many, and attempting to kill Spider-Man, but that's all okay because his daughter is dying? Bullshit.


This is Spider-Man, not Dr. Phil. Wipe your tears and go kick his ass.

1. Peter Parker

It was impossible to like Peter Parker in Spider-Man 3. He went from being a self-absorbed jackass to a total pussy to an insane person who, in the span of two minutes, goes from playing the piano and dancing in a jazz club to hitting women in the face, and finally back to being a pussy.

In Spider-Man 2, you could sympathize with the guy. His girl is engaged to someone else, his job sucks, he's failing his classes, his aunt finds out he was indirectly responsible for her husband's death, his best friend wants Spider-Man dead, he's losing his powers, and the city he's sacrificing it all to protect still hates him. Not to mention the dude with four mechanical arms trying to kill him.

But the reason why you cared was because he was a good, likeable person, and so you rooted for him. You wanted him to triumph. Had he been smacking Mary Jane around, dancing on tables and flipping his hair, you would've just been like, "whatever, man; he deserves it. Eff that guy." So by the end of Spider-Man 3, I wanted nothing more than Peter Parker's head on a pike. How could I not?

What I'm trying to say with all of this is that The Dark Knight was awesome. But if Christian Bale starts singing and jumping in front of American flags in Batman 3, people will die.

I'm a man of my word.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

New Site Banner

    Okay, hopefully you've noticed the new site banner. I finally got sick and tired of looking at that hideous default banner, so I loaded up Photoshop and went to work, the result of which you can see above.

    It's something I've been meaning to do for awhile, though I never really had any design in mind. Usually I load Photoshop with a clear idea of what I want to execute, and considering that this time I had next to nothing, I'm really happy with the way it turned out. Definitely an evolutionary process; I wish I had saved some of the iterations to show off. Some were awesome; some were really, really atrocious.

    A good thing about the design on this one is that the color can really easily be switched, so once I get tired of this color, I can swap it out on a whim. The only problem with it is that now I really want to switch the blog to black, but the way Blogger is set up, I'm not sure I'll be able to get it exactly the way I'm envisioning, so who knows what the future holds?

[UPDATE: Just messed around to see what it would look like in black, and it's not worth it. Yeah, the new banner looks great in it, but everything else becomes so generic. Totally not worth it; keeping what I have now.]

    Now that that's done, it's back to playing PixelJunk Eden for me.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Further PixelJunk Eden Impressions

    Not a liveblog, but I just thought I'd jot down some thoughts I've been having about Eden. So far, I'm enjoying it, but I've been having some mixed feelings about a lot of the design choices:

The Pros
  • It's definitely fun and relaxing. The presentation is excellent, the environments look interesting, and the music is awesome.
  • When everything is working just right and you're swinging through the gardens and getting huge combos, it's so satisfying.
  • At no point have I thought about whether or not this game was worth my money. When you aren't thinking about that, you know something's very right.
  • It's just...it's just fun.

The Cons
  • Falling from the top of a garden to the bottom because you just barely missed a jump is one of the most demoralizing actions in any videogame, ever. I joked in the liveblog about being able to web-sling like Spider-Man, but that really should've been in there.
  • The time limit/life bar is the worst idea known to man. As I said in the liveblog, it didn't work in echochrome, and it doesn't work here. I don't like to be pressured in a game like this. There's just no reason for it. What if in flOw, you had to keep eating a certain amount of other organisms to refill a depleting time bar? It would've completely broken the vibe of the game.
  • I'm really debating at this point whether enemies were really necessary at all in this game. Platforming is fun enough on its own, and the enemies are just kind of annoying. They just don't seem to be adding a lot, but then again, I've only seen like two types thus far (I'm on like Garden 04).
  • Being forced to replay these gardens over and over is getting on my nerves. Even if the target is to get, say, three Spectras (or is it three Spectra? oh well), I should be able to go for more without being kicked back out to the level select. The target should be a minimum, not a maximum.

    I'll probably post more impressions as I continue to go through it. I'm pretty sure there's supposed to be 10 gardens, so I'm not even halfway completed with this game yet. Posting my impressions as I go along is probably better than just not posting anything at all about it until a week or two later and then have a huge review, right? (I may discuss this kind of "extended game coverage" thing again later.)