You can’t make an omlette…

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While Sony have put all their shiny eggs in one big Blu basket, Square/Enix have listened to their grandmothers – this excerpt comes from a Wall Street Journal Online article that’s kind of a background to the PS3 launch.

 

Square Enix Co. used to make showcase games like Kingdom Hearts and the latest installment in the Final Fantasy series only for the PlayStation 2. This time it is planning to be more evenhanded, and it has announced two games for each of the three new-generation consoles. It still plans to develop the most advanced Final Fantasy game for the PlayStation 3. But it hasn’t yet decided which console will get Kingdom Hearts, a popular game involving Disney characters.

“We don’t want the PlayStation 3 to be the overwhelming loser, so we want to support them,” says Michihiro Sasaki, senior vice president of Square Enix. ” But we don’t want them to be the overwhelming winner either, so we can’t support them too much.”

 

Square have swapped allegiances before, but the manner in which they are hedging their bets at this time doesn’t indicate to me that they’ve simply lost faith in Sony, but that their ideal situation would be for the Wii, 360 and PS3 each to have a fair share of the market, with different consumers attracted to each on its merits. That way they could design their games to take best advantage of each system, and to appeal to each fanbase [customer-base sounds a bit too materialistic for gamers, doesn’t it? we prefer to think of ourselves as fans so we can ignore our addiction-fuelled consumption] – Square’s being smart here, but it’s still a blow for Sony.

 

But then, Final Fantasy VIII was the game that convinced me to buy a Playstation, and Final Fantasy X was the first game I bought for my PS2. Neither of those games were launch titles, btw. But the Wii60 combo platter has Oblivion & Zelda, which is a hellish tasty treat.

The Friday Story

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This one’s from years ago, with the first line cribbed from an Ani DiFranco song, but the plan is to write a new bit of fic for every Friday:

The Nite-Owl

In strode a man in the shape of a man, holding a hat shaped hat. I’d seen him a dozen times before, and laughed a dozen more at his rancorous flirtations with the ageing behemoth behind the counter. He’d held a fascination for me since the first time I walked into the Nite Owl, and he was the reason I walked an extra block for my 4am cup of coffee.

There aren’t many things I’ll walk an extra block for, but his glacial smile was one of them. It spread slowly across his face, like a force of nature, like it knew it could take its time getting there, like it knew it’d do its job before the dawn broke, before the day was done. His smile brushed away the mountainous strains of my life, swept them aside and belittled them for the tiny passions of insomnia I knew they were. He had this utterly fuckilicious air about him, calculated and casual at the same time, like he was studiously aloof. And god did it work for me. The way he strode in and threw his scarf into the corner of the booth opposite mine – no matter where I sat his was always opposite mine. The way he unbuttoned his coat with one downward sweep of his hand, the way his smile never even cracked a glimmer on the face of the waitress. She had a kind word for everyone but him, everyone else was love, or dear, but he was sir. No respect for him though, maybe he’d corrupted her daughter. I liked to think so.

I’d imagine what I’d do if he was brought into the hospital, or if he came in looking for me, or for a friend who was ill. I’d wonder whether our complicit acquaintance was specific to a place, or something we could share anywhere. When I’m walking home in the early hours of the morning I usually cross to the other side of the street if I see a man walking towards me, but somehow he didn’t frighten me. I still get chills whenever I see a figure stumble towards me in the darkness; they used to be feelings of fear, but now there’s the faintest frisson of excitement, of expectation. I wondered if he knew of the subtle electric fire that for his sake played within me.

I knew he’d noticed me before, we shared smiles at the entrance of the Nite Owl, smiles of silent complicity in the insane ramblings and cosmic vibrations of the night. We both knew what it was like to take our minds of the hook for a while and let life carry us along. Why else would we frequent the same coffee house with its demonic staff and coffee that was water dressed in brown. I’d always wanted to bump into him as I walked to the Owl, so I could suggest we walked somewhere else, for a late night slice of pie, but he always got there after me, and he always left first.

He was part of my ritual for avoiding sleep, a case study of gesture and motion. His hands were always active, holding his tea with one, holding it for an age before he took his first sip. Searching frantically with the other for a lighter he’d always misplaced. Or using both to roll up another fag once he’d emptied his tin. I considered taking up smoking so I could bum one from the guy, but I didn’t just want to talk to him, I wanted to loom in his life, as he ploughed into mine.

The Thursday Night Special

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So, here’s the inaugural Thursday Night Special, which I hope will be a collection of the very best things ever. And maybe I’m setting the bar too high by starting with this, but anyhoo, on with the show.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr. Andy Kaufman:

linklog for 2006-09-21

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because sometimes we all need a healthy dose of perspective…

Where have all the heroes gone?

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First we lose Steve Irwin to a stingray, now little Richard Hammond has been critically injured while attempting to break the British land speed record in a jet powered car, which I’m sure he was eminently qualified to do being a former Tornado pilot like Wing Commander Andy Green, the current holder of that title. What scares me though is that these young girls started digging a hole for Mr. Hammond two days ago.

Is there an international conspiracy to rid the world of death-defying C-list celebrities? And if there is, where do I sign up?

UPDATE: Some American fans of the Hammond have also predicted his demise and have lovingly crafted this beautiful casket. Their love and devotion has brought a tear to my eye.

hotrod casket for hammond