Monday, July 25, 2005

Love Affairs

Ok... You caught me. Right now, I am in the middle of not just one, but two separate love affairs. Yes, my husband knows about this... He's actually involved in one of them -- it's a bit of a threesome really.

RELAX. These are affairs with video games. You may have noticed that I am, and I suppose always have been, a gamer by nature. I spend entirely too much time with games. But recently two have pushed all others from my mind. I haven't even played The Sims 2 in months!! (Yes, it's that serious.)

The first is really a bit of a tease. And you can blame Princess Jami for introducing us. It's called The Kingdom of Loathing, and it is a blast! It's a free MMORPG. The graphics are nothing special, (umm... stick figures actually, but really funny and cute ones!) and the game play is NOT what I'd call cutting edge, but there is an amazing amount of humor to be found there. As I said though, it is a tease. You only get about 40 actions a day. This is not NEARLY enough. Now, there are certain things you can do to bump that total up a bit, but really, twice that would not be enough! So, I created seven separate characters within the game... It's not like I use them to cheat or anything though. They are all on their separate quests and journeys and they really don't interact much. Still, doesn't take long to play all of my adventures for the day, and then I'm done. So, I had to find something else to occupy my time, and boy did I ever!

So, I found myself in Blockbuster. I have a gamepass, so I can rent a game and keep it a day or a week or a month, and they don't mind. The only rule is I can only have one at a time. Well, I've gone through most of the games on their shelves, and what's left is mostly stuff that I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole. (I mean, come on -- Leisure Suit Larry has a sequel? Tell me they're kidding...) But there is one that has been sitting there for a while that didn't look like anything special, but also seemed mostly harmless: Gladius. These guys seriously need to work on their package design. The box doesn't even begin to give you a feel for what's inside. It's a fighting game, and normally I avoid those like the plague, but this one is a bit different. Most fighting games become a mad round of button mashing that involves no skill, and wears out your thumbs (and your controllers) quickly. Not Gladius. Gladius is turn-based. (WOOHOO!!! CIVIII anyone?) No button mashing. Plenty of time for strategizing and thinking out your every move. And it has a co-op multi-player mode. (This would be the previously-mentioned threesome...) Seriously, for anyone who enjoys a bit of strategy in their games, check out Gladius. And don't let the sub-standard packaging deter you. If I had picked up this one long ago, I might have missed out on some of the more questionable titles I've played recently.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

I just don't understand...

For some odd reason it is extremely fashionable to proclaim (as loudly as possible) the name of the designer who created your clothing and/or accessories. I have really never quite understood this. Really, if they're such a good designer, shouldn't the design speak for itself? Would the bag you're carrying be nearly so chic without someone else's initials printed all over it? It seems that many designers are not designing clothes anymore -- they are more interested in designing vehicles for their logo. And for some reason, fashionistas everywhere are eating it up.

Even more perplexing to me is this site. I understand that in a society where labels are so desirable as to be out of the price range of the average girl there will be knock offs. Makes sense really -- just simple supply and demand. But I would think that if you are so concerned with the name of the designer that you would wear it printed all over your hand bag, you would not want people to know that the bag didn't really come from that designer. I don't see why anyone would buy a bag with some designer's name written all over it, only then to have the word "FAKE" printed in huge letters over said name. Let's not even mention how utterly repulsive the finished item looks. Wouldn't the $60 be better spent on a bag that actually looks presentable, even without a designer name? Can someone please help me understand???

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