Well lookie here. Another post. Don’t get too excited. This could very well be just another flash in the pan for all I know. In any case I decided to stick with this theme of getting back to my roots and present you all with some good old-fashioned zombie goodness. What better way to officially christen my aptly title GEEK ZONE.
This little gem came into my possession as a result of the infamous Playstation Network Hack a few months ago. No I didn’t illegally download it or circumvent anything. I’m flattered you’d think that but I’m not nearly skilled enough to do anything like that. No, this wonderful little game came as a compensatory gift from Sony during their Welcome Back Program. For those unfamiliar with the whole matter, the condensed version is Sony’s game and music network was hacked and some shifty nameless people gained access to a lot of personal data. The network was shut down for a month and change and kiddies (big and small) across the world very very angry. As a gesture of good faith for the inconvenience it caused (and to brush over the whole intrusion incident) they announced a Welcome Back program that would give all registered PSN users 2 free game downloads.
Needless to say I pounced on that like a fat man at a chinese buffet.
For some odd reason (I have no idea why) I was immediately attracted to the title of this game and the fact that it had a picture of a dude with shades blowing a pussbag’s head off. So I said why not. It’s free, right? I’ll start by saying it’s not a groundbreaking game. It doesn’t have stellar CG cut screens or dramatic dialogue. In fact their cut screens are pieces of artwork. The gameplay however is kind of funky. It’s a two stick directional shooter where you, a survivor of a zombie outbreak who is immune to the disease, fight through hordes of ravenous zombies tying to uncover the mystery of Patient Zero. I had a feeling I would like this game just based on the fact I gave out a Patient Zero Award here on WordPress many moons ago. Although the controls are painfully simplistic I must say that the gameplay is slightly addictive. Firstly the actual graphics are pretty tight. Although the game camera is always at an arial view, the level of detail in the zombies and settings are quite impressive for such a small game. The lighting and fog effects are also unnerving at certain points as well. It pays very close attention to lighting detail to the point where if you accidentally (or purposefully) destroy light sources you get plunged into very creepy scenarios where you only have your flashlight to guide you.
While some zombie purists may take exception to this, the game does introduce some special new types of undead. The majority of the game you deal with your typical slow plodding ones but every so often you get to match wits with Runners, Mouths, Jumpers and the utterly hilarious Bombies! They add an interesting dynamic to the whole zombie apocalypse theme making it great kill’em all fun.
The game’s greatest aspect is the chaos that ensues in each zone. It takes me back to the days of old Arcade shooters like Gauntlet. Is anybody even old enough to remember going to arcades? I liken the madness in this game to one of my most favorite arcade games Smash TV. Dead Nation takes the concept of being overwhelmed to a whole new level. There’s nothing quite like getting surrounded by literally hundreds of zombies and having to fight your way out. It’s totally unbelievable and outrageous but insanely fun. There’s something profoundly therapeutic about mowing down a field of brain chompers with a sub machine gun after a stressful day. It’s an easy game to learn how to play but can be incredibly hard to complete especially on higher difficulties.
As if that isn’t enough it has online co-op capabilities where you and your buddies can wreak as much havoc and mayhem as you want. There’s even an online meta game that tracks your country of origin’s progress versus the zombie epidemic against other countries. All in all it’s one of the best game downloads I ever got my hands on and definitely a crowd pleaser for zombie fan boys and girls out there.
Dead Nation is Geek Zone Approved!
This is probably my shortest blog entry ever but I consider this more of an observational experiment than anything. For those who are regular WordPress blog readers I’m sure you’ve come across this bit of humor. The next time you’re browsing through the Freshly Pressed or looking back at an article of yours that has been pressed, look closely at the comments. Hidden within the responses are those that I’ve deemed the Promowhores (aka shameless self promoters). They’re easy to spot. They always sign their comments with a link to their blog – as if you can’t simply click on the name and get there. While many may be genuinely interested in the content there are some who simply want to ride the coattails of success. They stalk the pressings looking to be the first name on the comments list so they can draw some attention from being at top. I won’t lie. I’ve done that a couple of times in the past when I first started blogging but what makes them shameless and me not is the fact (a) I only commented on posts I actually did have an interest in and (b) I don’t have a link to my bloody blog in my signature! Shameless I tell you. Shameless.
Something must be afoot. It’s been days since my last post. I know, I know… all of my millions and millions of fans must be waiting with bated breath wondering what new and incredible insights I’m going to grace WordPress with. Okay so there’s nothing true about anything in that statement other than “I’m” and the only thing I have to say is in regards to the lovely men and women at the United Parcel Service.
So I had a discussion with my father last week. Years ago, when I was last in NY I had started building a computer. It was a great system (at the time). It was going to be my new weapon to inflict massive amounts of graphic design damage upon the world. But as life would have it, certain circumstances arose where the construction of that computer had to be put on hold. Pressing real life matters forced me abandon my project in mid construction. Flash forward to present day my father and I came up with the idea of him shipping the partially constructed monster beast to us before we leave for Nunavut. It made sense. I could put it together and have it shipped up to our new frozen home with all out other belongings. Who could handle such a task? Certainly not the conventional mail systems. We’ve had nightmare encounters with the United States Postal Service and inviting Canada Post into the mix is a recipe for disaster. Who then, dammit? Who?
What can brown do for you?
Of course! UPS! I’ve used their postal service for years and have always had good results. They’re quick and reliable. It seemed like the logical choice.
My father brought everything down to the UPS Store and did the right thing – or least what we thought was the right thing – and had them pack up the components. He explicitly told the dedicated worker that it was a computer and needed to be marked fragile and handled with care. He was met with a warm smile and the classic reassurance of “No problem.”
The packages arrived very quickly. Heck I don’t even think it took more than 3 days (and that wasn’t express shipping or anything). When I heard the knock at my door I was jazzed. I was finally going to be reunited with my Frankenstein. When the driver handed me the packages I saw that they were a little dinged but that’s expected with long distance travel. Lo and behold when I opened the box containing my hard drives and case I was horrified…
Yeah… my case was wrecked. The entire front panel had snapped off from the case itself and the top portion was completely shattered. With the aid of some Krazy glue and a bungee chord (yeah I MacGuyver with the best of them) I managed to glue the pieces back together. My hard drives were in an sorry state as well. I had three mounted in it… securely mounted I might add. The one in the drive bay was totally jarred from it’s spot and was inside the case acting like a battering ram to the motherboard. Apparently one of the mounting brackets was bent so severely during transit that it quite literally fell out of its spot. Whatever volleyball game they were playing with my rig must have been a good one because the hits that rattled the first drive loose must have been so violent that they broke 2 of the 4 screws that had one of my other drives mounts. It dangled precariously as if holding on for dear life.
So the what’s final prognosis? Well my monitor works at least. I have to wait on my CPU cooler to arrive before I can assemble everything and test out my board and drives. So it’s the waiting game once again. I should be livid at this point in time but the move has me properly distracted enough. There’s a disturbing annual trend that’s starting to develop every October now. I seem to be destined to have something screw up in the spooky month. Last year I had tried to get some custom t-shirts ordered for my wedding but that fell through right at crunch time. Long story short, I was out $350 four weeks before the wedding and had no shirts. Ironically I’m four weeks away from another big day so I’m hoping that this counts as my bad October event so that we can get to where we’re going without any major mishaps.
What can brown do for you?
Put the kibosh on your property apparently. Welcome to my shit list UPS.