Eat information, defecate ideas.

Dark Souls II means a lot to me personally.

The game, the series in general, it is infamous for its challenging gameplay. Die and you are penalized. Get better at the game.

If it was slightly different, this would be anti-design, but From Software manages to make it work, on a very teetering balance.

There are, of course, some problems with the implementation in some areas. The invasion system makes PvP more trouble than its usually worth; the big fun is in co-op, where the communication is just simple enough to form a free-flowing social experience.

But I put a lot of time into the game. I ran the gauntlet through No-Man’s Worth and crushed the Flexile Sentry after five times. I barrel-rolled my way through the Shrine of Amana. I ran circles around the Giant Lord.

And I beat the game. This is widely regarded as an existentially satisfying experience.

The moral of the story is that effort is worth it. The costume me and my mother made underscored this.

Gavlan, the character I portrayed at Dragon Con, is symbolic of the series’ aesthetic as a whole. He’s a gyrm, a race of giant dwarves (it makes sense in context). This is how the series presents its horrific elements, through subtle uncanniness. Most of the gyrm you meet in the game are monsters— hard hitters, but they go down easily enough.

Gavlan is not hostile. He is a merchant, and the only one in the game which buys your equipment. No explanation is given to his friendliness. His dialogue doesn’t even hint at a backstory, unlike other NPCs. It is merely “Gavlan Wheel, Gavlan Deal”. Any reason that he might be there is entirely a matter of speculation from context.

Constructing the costume posed some challenges.

His armor is this quasi-lamellar thing, but the plates are oversized (he is a dwarf, after all). It makes the whole thing more rigid than most armor.

The helmet is fabric fitted around a helmet from a military surplus store down the street from the con (originally it was just going to be molded into shape).

The trademark mug is made of cardboard and duct-tape wrapped around a plastic coffee ground jar.

The whole apparatus takes another person to don, and extremely restricts my peripheral vision and hearing. Fortunately, my mom is extremely geeky and enjoys conventions, and served as a page/guide dog.

I lasted for an hour at 9:00 PM at the Hilton on a Sunday; any other time would have been infeasible. I think I got somewhere around twenty to thirty photos taken of me by other people.

I probably couldn’t have done it all if it wasn’t for the help of disability services at the con (I sometimes get panic attacks and lines and heat are really bad for that). My energy level was much higher throughout the con and gave me the endurance to do this.

The feeling of making people happy by instantiating a character into the physical world is barely effable. It made the con worth it, even as its growth deforms it into a bloated mess where it takes 40 minutes to get through the Marriott to the Hilton and impossible to see major events without waiting in line for an hour.

I’m going to think of this whenever a project gives me trouble with motivation.

horrasin:

malformalady:

McDonald’s has been forced to open its first ever restaurant with a turquoise coloured sign after city planners said the signature yellow sign would be too garish. Officials in Sedona, Arizona told the fast-food giant they were unable to open a restaurant with the trademark yellow logo.This is due to the city’s strict regulations which prevent buildings from ruining the picturesque view of the desert.
Photo credit: Michael Wright/WENN.com

arizona joins the aesthetic movement

Fascist zoning people have a special circle of hell awaiting them.

horrasin:

malformalady:

McDonald’s has been forced to open its first ever restaurant with a turquoise coloured sign after city planners said the signature yellow sign would be too garish. Officials in Sedona, Arizona told the fast-food giant they were unable to open a restaurant with the trademark yellow logo.This is due to the city’s strict regulations which prevent buildings from ruining the picturesque view of the desert.

Photo credit: Michael Wright/WENN.com

arizona joins the aesthetic movement

Fascist zoning people have a special circle of hell awaiting them.

(via wrapscallion)

emareaf:

ozymandias271:

hot-gay-rationalist:

Oh also thegreatjackal corrected me: octopi is not in fact a correct form for the plural of octopus.

yes! because octopus derives from the Greek pous which means “foot.” The nominative plural of pous is podes! Octopi is using the Latin plural which is the wrong language and even if it were the right language the Latin word for “foot” is not second declension!

I usually say octopuses tho

So Octopodes would be right?

'OCTOPUSES' IS THE FUCKING CORRECT FORM THIS ISN'T GREEK YOU SHITS

…um, sorry.

(via inexacterminology)

somervta:

inexacterminology:

emareaf:

michaelblume:

somervta:

ozymandias271:

rightnowbb:

princess-neville:

who else is part of the 18 And Over And Does Not Have A Drivers License For Literally No Good Reason club 

moi

me!

I guess anxiety is kind of a good reason

meeeee

me for >5 years

Does “I don’t have the money for it” count as a good reason? Otherwise I’d qualify.

I’m in

yep

I live on an island in central SW Florida. I actually need to drive and can’t.

World’s First 3D Printed Vertebrae Are Implanted Into Patients in China

rushmarket:

World’s First 3D Printed Vertebrae Are Implanted Into Patients in China

imageOver the last several years, the news regarding 3D printing and health has been astounding. Learning about the latest advances in biomedical printing can sometimes feel like reading a science fiction novel, and only a few decades ago it would have been impossible to imagine that some of the techniques that have been developed would ever be more than fantastical plot devices. As 3D printing…

View On WordPress

(via laughingmad)

“You must be doing something wrong if you invoke your rights.”

—   Sgt. Richardson of the Jacksonville, FL Sheriff’s Office, as caught on video speaking to a man filming prisoner transport outside a county courthouse. When confronted by police, the man invoked the Fifth Amendment to avoid explaining why he wanted to film there. This was the police response. (via hipsterlibertarian)

(via eccentric-opinion)

booksneak:

ew-romance:

theother-worldlyninja:

moraniarty:

pwnator:

kiriloid:

tdrloid:

pelicaneggs:

jiinkiie2:

garrys-wife:

Wow, that case must be JAM-packed.

It’d butter be

looks like shes bready to go

my flight had better be rye-t on time

i’d hate for her to be forced to wheat

I bet that costs a lot of dough.

that case is toastally awesome

That case must be handy when you’re crumbing and going.

i really knead that bag

That suitcase looks like bread.

booksneak:

ew-romance:

theother-worldlyninja:

moraniarty:

pwnator:

kiriloid:

tdrloid:

pelicaneggs:

jiinkiie2:

garrys-wife:

Wow, that case must be JAM-packed.

It’d butter be

looks like shes bready to go

my flight had better be rye-t on time

i’d hate for her to be forced to wheat

I bet that costs a lot of dough.

that case is toastally awesome

That case must be handy when you’re crumbing and going.

i really knead that bag

That suitcase looks like bread.

(Source: , via anarchyinblack)

The End of Gamers

dangolding:

The last few weeks in videogame culture have seen a level of combativeness more marked and bitter than any beforehand. 

First, a developer—a woman who makes games who has had so much piled on to her that I don’t want to perpetuate things by naming her—was the target of a harassment campaign that attacked her personal life and friendships. Campaigns of personal harassment aimed at game developers are nothing new. They are dismayingly common among those who happen to be women, or not white straight men, and doubly so if they also happen to make the sort of game that in any way challenge the status quo, even if that challenge is only made through their very existence. The viciousness and ferocity with which this campaign occurred, however, was shocking, and certainly out of the ordinary. This was something more than routine misogyny (and in games, it often is routine, shockingly). It was an ugly spectacle that should haunt and shame those involved for the rest of their lives.

It’s important to note that this hate campaign took the guise of a crusade against ‘corruption’ and ‘bias’ in the games industry, with particular emphasis on the relationships between independent game developers and the press.

These fires, already burning hot, were further fuelled yesterday by the release of the latest installment in Anita Sarkeesian’s ‘Tropes vs. Women in Video Games’ video series. In this particular video, Sarkeesian outlines “largely insignificant non-playable female characters whose sexuality or victimhood is exploited as a way to infuse edgy, gritty or racy flavoring into game worlds. These sexually objectified female bodies are designed to function as environmental texture while titillating presumed straight male players.” Today, Sarkeesian has been forced to leave her home due to some serious threats made against her and her family in response to the video. It is terrifying stuff.

Taken in their simplest, most basic form, a videogame is a creative application of computer technology. For a while, perhaps, when such technology was found mostly in masculine cultures, videogames accordingly developed a limited, inwards-looking perception of the world that marked them as different from everyone else. This is the gamer, an identity based on difference and separateness. When playing games was an unusual activity, this identity was constructed in order to define and unite the group (and to help demarcate it as a targetable demographic for business). It became deeply bound up in assumptions and performances of gender and sexuality. To be a gamer was to signal a great many things, not all of which are about the actual playing of videogames. Research like this, by Adrienne Shaw, proves this point clearly.

When, over the last decade, the playing of videogames moved beyond the niche, the gamer identity remained fairly uniformly stagnant and immobile. Gamer identity was simply not fluid enough to apply to a broad spectrum of people. It could not meaningfully contain, for example, Candy Crush players, Proteus players, and Call of Duty players simultaneously. When videogames changed, the gamer identity did not stretch, and so it has been broken.

And lest you think that I’m exaggerating about the irrelevance of the traditionally male dominated gamer identity, recent news confirms this, with adult women outnumbering teenage boys in game-playing demographics in the USA. Similar numbers also often come out of Australian surveys. The predictable ‘what kind of games do they really play, though—are they really gamers?’ response says all you need to know about this ongoing demographic shift. This insinuated criteria for ‘real’ videogames is wholly contingent on identity (i.e. a real gamer shouldn’t play Candy Crush, for instance).

On the evidence of the last few weeks, what we are seeing is the end of gamers, and the viciousness that accompanies the death of an identity. Due to fundamental shifts in the videogame audience, and a move towards progressive attitudes within more traditional areas of videogame culture, the gamer identity has been broken. It has nowhere to call home, and so it reaches out inarticulately at invented problems, such as bias and corruption, which are partly just ways of expressing confusion as to why things the traditional gamer does not understand are successful (that such confusion results in abject heartlessness is an indictment on the character of the male-focussed gamer culture to begin with).

The gamer as an identity feels like it is under assault, and so it should. Though the ‘consumer king’ gamer will continue to be targeted and exploited while their profitability as a demographic outweighs their toxicity, the traditional gamer identity is now culturally irrelevant.

The battles (and I don’t use that word lightly; in some ways perhaps ‘war’ is more appropriate) to make safe spaces for videogame cultures are long and they are resisted tempestuously, but through the pain and suffering of people who have their friendships, their personal lives, and their professions on the line, things continue to improve. The result has been a palpable progressive shift.

This shift is precisely the root of such increasingly violent hostility. The hysterical fits of those inculcated at the heart of gamer culture might on the surface be claimed as crusades for journalistic integrity, or a defense against falsehoods, but—along with a mix of the hatred of women and an expansive bigotry thrown in for good measure—what is actually going on is an attempt to retain hegemony. Make no mistake: this is the exertion of power in the name of (male) gamer orthodoxy—an orthodoxy that has already begun to disappear.

The last few weeks therefore represent the moment that gamers realised their own irrelevance. This is a cold wind that has been a long time coming, and which has framed these increasingly malicious incidents along the way. Videogames have now achieved a purchase on popular culture that is only possible without gamers.

Today, videogames are for everyone. I mean this in an almost destructive way. Videogames, to read the other side of the same statement, are not for you. You do not get to own videogames. No one gets to own videogames when they are for everyone. They add up to more than any one group.

On some level, the grim individuals who are self-centred and myopic enough to be upset at the prospect of having their medium taken away from them are absolutely right. They have astutely, and correctly identified what is going on here. Their toys are being taken away, and their treehouses are being boarded up. Videogames now live in the world and there is no going back.

I am convinced that this marks the end. We are finished here. From now on, there are no more gamers—only players.

(via wecansexy)

ishouldbecleaningrn:

plasmalogical:



THIS SUMMER…. ROB SCHNEIDER IS….. THE CONSPIRACY THEORIST!!! 

…what.

ishouldbecleaningrn:

plasmalogical:

image

THIS SUMMER…. ROB SCHNEIDER IS….. THE CONSPIRACY THEORIST!!! 

…what.

(Source: nosdrinker)

Going to Dragoncon.

Gavlan will wheel. Gavlan will deal.

nihilsupernum:

missespeon:

my brain: there is literaly a 0 percent chance the fictional shit from creepy games will show up irl in your kitchen

me: but its dark and scary

Huh your reversed the roles for ‘you’ and ‘your brain’ are the opposite of mine. I would have said 

me: there is literaly a 0 percent chance the fictional shit from creepy games will show up irl in your kitchen

brain: but its dark and scary

In my culture (and here I mean some kind of lesswrong/jewish/other life influences/america mashup, my culture is not necessarily one which anyone else shares), the base assumption is that I am the rational part of my mind and any sort of akrasia and social anxiety and emotions and whatnot is not part of my identity. Treating my badbrains as not part of myself could be harmful for fixing them, but it is an accurate description of the way I currently function. I say ‘slytherin side’ and ‘humor module’, but it wouldn’t occur to me to say ‘logical side’. I am the logical side.

My I-model pretty much applies to whoever’s talking normally. More abstractly, it is a parliament of differing motives vying for control, and anxiety is Jimmy Stewart reading a filibuster.

However, I’ve had some derealization and depersonalization episodes during panic attacks where I’ve not felt in control, but simultaneously my internal monologue was consistent with the “reasoning” behind various actions.

nothing-of-substance:


starlingsongs:

postwhitesociety:

Fuck no

ALL  CITIZENS  MUST  REGISTER  BIOMETRICS  WITH  THE  NUTRITIONAL  AUTHORITY  UNDER  PENALTY  OF  RATION  FORFEITURE.

And this is at George Mason U, crazy. They have such a good econ/law department.

nothing-of-substance:

starlingsongs:

postwhitesociety:

Fuck no

ALL  CITIZENS  MUST  REGISTER  BIOMETRICS  WITH  THE  NUTRITIONAL  AUTHORITY  UNDER  PENALTY  OF  RATION  FORFEITURE.

And this is at George Mason U, crazy. They have such a good econ/law department.

(via nextworldover)

onewonderfulbug:

Whenever I see strawman comics, where we’ve got the calm, supposedly-rational artist self-insert and the frothing, angry, stereotypical-in-every-way opposition, everything else gets filtered out and this is all I see:

image

(via raginrayguns)

princeowl:

really sick of seeing so much hate directed towards the police on here. look, we get it, you prefer sting’s solo work, i like it too alright? that doesnt mean ‘every little thing she does is magic’ and ‘can’t stand losing you’ arent awesome jams. ‘roxanne’ and ‘don’t stand so close to me’ are classic, don’t even get me started on ‘spirits in the material world’. just stop ok? 

(via anarchyinblack)

(Source: tristanpej, via anarchyinblack)