Tuesday, February 25, 2014

New Pets

It's great to have pets hanging about the house when I'm just relaxing.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Monday Music

New week, brand new track from The Horrors.

The opening is promising, but then the song becomes bland and repetitive. I hope the new album is more energetic and adventurous.

Here's a band I heard on the Danger Radio podcast. East London band Splassh with "Need It".

Do you like mild psychedelia crossed with a little Grapes of Wrath? Then have a listen to Montreal band Elephant Stone, "Love the Sinner, Hate the Sin".

And finally, another Montreal boy, Sam Roberts, who, I think, has been listening to a little Manchester, circa 1990.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Premier League Update

A day that featured 7 matches saw little change at the top of the Premier league table. Chelsea, Arsenal, Man City are still one, two, three respectively, and Liverpool sits at 4th, 6 points behind Chelsea and 3 points ahead of Tottenham.

Although tied with Everton at 45 points, Man United moved up one place to 6th, by virtue of goal differential, after defeating a motivated Crystal Palace.

Arsenal took it to a hapless Sunderland side --- which now sits at 24 points in the relegation zone --- and cruised to a 4-1 victory. That put them one point behind Chelsea and two ahead of Man City. It was a good win, but if the Gunners truly want to take the league title, they have to show a similar form against the big teams.

Chelsea tops the table, but looks less impressive with each passing week. The Blues could only manage a 1-0 win against Everton --- and it took them 93 minutes to do so.

Man City has also slowed its roll ever so slightly. It could only pull off a 70th-minute, 1-0 win over relegation teasers Stoke City. Perhaps the Citizens are missing Sergio Aguero?

Tomorrow's matches could see some interesting movement in the table. Liverpool faces Swansea City at Anfield --- a win would pull the Reds within a point of Man City; Tottenham looks to make a move on Liverpool as it squares off against Norwich at Carrow Road; and Aston Villa will try to create more distance between itself and the relegation zone with a match against Newcastle United at St. James' Park.

I hope you'll be watching the matches. I have to work during the day. So, I'll take in the highlights on BBC's Match of the Day 2.

Barclay's Premier League table

Thursday, February 20, 2014

A Tale of an Excellent Game

The title screen displays the game's simple, but impressive art style

Giant Bomb's Game of the Year podcast compelled me to purchase Brothers: a Tale of Two Sons. I'm glad I did because it's a wonderful game. Everything about it is simple and uncomplicated, but evocative and moving.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Another Game Finished

After 70 hours of play (according to Steam) I finished Sleeping Dogs and all of its DLC (Year of the Snake, Nightmare in North Point, Zodiac Tournament). Although there were a few moments in the Zodiac Tournament I disliked immensely, I have to say that, overall, I loved the game. The combat is straightforward and fluid; driving is a blast; character and story are moderately cliched, but enjoyable; the city of Hong Kong is vibrant and colourful; graphics are excellent. If you take time to explore and just screw around, though, you find a lot of what you see in the picture below.

But, considering the size of the game, and the fact Wei Shen is always on the move, it's not surprising the developers (United Front Games) chose to use such assets. I certainly would not expect them to make every building and store in the city accessible. Imagine how long that would take to create and how much space and memory it would require. The game doesn't need that kind of detail and doesn't suffer without it. It's excellent, and I can't wait for United Front's next Sleeping Dogs game.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Premier League Update

It was a bit of a disappointing football weekend for me. Arsenal lost, Chelsea won, and Manchester City played to a draw. So, in the tight, topsy-turvy title race Chelsea moved into first, Arsenal dropped to second, and Man City dropped to third. That's not entirely disastrous for the Gunners because they trail their London rivals by only a point, but the manner in which they lost puts their title chances in doubt.

The Gunners lost 5-1 to Liverpool --- 5-1! I think it was 3-0 after only 20 minutes. The lads looked shell-shocked and in complete disarray. As the announcer pointed out, Arsenal were "still on the bus". Defence was non-existent; Mesut Ozil seemed to lack motivation; Jack Wilshire could do nought but chide his teammates. I guess, if you're going to lose, you might as well lose to a big club to mitigate the embarrassment. (Unlike Manchester United, which played to a draw against bottom-feeding London club Fulham. That was probably the best thing to come out of the weekend's fixtures.) But if Arsenal wishes to silence its doubters --- e.g., the pundits on BBC's Match of the Day --- it must tighten up its defence, be more aggressive downfield, and start defeating the bigger clubs. They have yet to defeat Chelsea, Man City, and Man United. They'll have to put those clubs behind them to capture the title. I hope they do this for tomorrow's match against Man United and end the day back at the top of the table. Go Gunners!

Barclay's Premier League Table

Friday, February 07, 2014

Killing Time

The other day I found out that Borderlands 2's fourth Headhunter DLC-pack will be released on February 11. "Fourth", I thought to myself, "Where was I doing when the other three were released?" Well, let's look into that.