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Monthly Archives: June 2013

Love online? Of course! You can ask MMOers – they can tell you!

Intertwining love, gaming, and social media in one post – sounds fun!  At first, I wasn’t sure how the 3 aforementioned would blend with each other, but my mind immediately went to the numerous videogames that offer different levels of social interaction between us human beings all around the world.  You might be thinking why am I mentioning videogaming?  First, my blog Lou-Cyo Reviews’ purpose is to expose news, reviews, and commentary about the world of videogames – I want to keep it relevant.  I owe it to my readers.  Though I won’t be focusing on videogaming, I will refer to it all throughout.  Secondly, if we are talking of social media, videogames constitute a vast portion of such category especially if we’re discussing “21st-century love.”

Modern age love.  When I read the previous sentence, I immediately consider the Internet being involved in some way, shape, or form.  In this era, the Internet has given an immense number of the Earth’s population access to connect with each other via instant texts, videos, illustrations, and microphones.  If we’re not on facebook checking for Notifications, we are tweeting and retweeting people we find fascinating.  And if you’re immersed in the gaming culture and into massive multiplayer online games, you might already have a set time to meet with your team to either raid a sorcerer’s cave or take down your enemy’s armed forces.  We live in the times of connectivity – the resources seem endless.  With each passing second, people are trying to find easier and better ways to connect and share their lives.  So with that, how can one even entertain the idea that love CANNOT sprout between two (or more) people?

It all appears wonderfully uncomplicated written down, doesn’t it?  However, it’s far from the truth.  Yes, social media gives us countless ways to communicate with others and create possible healthy relationships with one-time strangers.  But social media is just that: the means we use to communicate.  If people don’t utilize their resources appropriately and effectively to nurture their relationships the same are as good as dead.  It’s not a matter of what a pair of lovers use to communicate with each other.  It’s a matter of how they communicate with each other.  If people cannot interact in a healthy manner in order to promote understanding and trust between them, it won’t matter whether you both have a Twitter, facebook, Skype, ooVoo, Xbox Live, or email accounts.

I found myself playing the Long Distance Relationship Love Game once.  We started a friendship in a popular chat site and after several months decided to meet in person.  I believe we never exchanged photos by that time, so it was awkward as HECK when we finally met.  Outcome?  We became really good friends and later our friendship bloomed into one of the best relationships I’ve ever had in my life.  Obviously ups and downs occurred, but for 95% of the time I felt satisfied and happy.  Lucky even, that I had found such an individual to share my life with.  Then the universe decided it was time to test just how strong our bond was.  I was presented with an opportunity to expand my education and get a Master’s Degree in Chicago – I couldn’t say no.

I was scared.  Scared to face my significant other and make my decision of moving to another country which meant the end of the relationship we had.  I remember days of pulsating anxiety and dread.  When the conversation finally took place, I remember my lover at the time tell me, “We don’t have to end it.  We’ll make it.  I believe in us.”  And I believed it.  We discussed how we still have our cellphones, facebook, and laptops to video chat.  I was confident.  However, the minute I left my home island things turned for the worst.  My other half started to alienate from me because I was “not [there].”  The phone conversations went from “I miss you” to guilt trips of “I hate this.  I don’t understand why you needed to go so far.”  Video chats rarely happened.  We exchanged maybe a couple of emails…  Long story short, the person I loved called me one night and said, “I can’t deal with this anymore,” and just like that, it was over.  I was devastated.  I felt at the verge of depression, but thankfully I was surrounded by wonderful individuals who kept me going and pushed when I needed it.

We both had facebook, Skype, and our respective cellphones…  But it didn’t matter –effective communication was nonexistent.  I was so eager to share my new-found passion in life and what the big city of Chicago had to offer.  And what did I came across?  My significant other saying, “I really don’t want to know about it.  I don’t want to believe you’re gone.”  My LIFE became Chicago at that point in time, so what was I supposed to talk about?  Conversing about what I ingested and if my bowel movements were normative can only take you so far.  The lack of communication served as toxic waste in the field where understanding needed to grow in order for our relationship to survive.  The methods were there, but never used in an effective manner.  Relationships, created over the Internet or not, last because people WANT to work on the relationship and make it last.

(P.S. – Post is in respond to Weekly Writing Challenge: Love in the 21st Century.)

 
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Posted by on June 26, 2013 in Game Over

 

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Happy Birthday, Luigi!

(Luigi Banner-sig by =Chivi-chivik on deviantart)

You better grab every single green trinket you possess because it’s time for grand celebration: Luigi is turning 30 this year!  Can you believe it’s been that long?!  Since his first appearance in Mario Bros. (released on July 14, 1983 and not to be confused with Super Mario Bros. which release date was 1985), Luigi has served as Mario’s sidekick in almost all the adventures that have taken place in the Mushroom Kingdom and beyond.  However, Nintendo has decided that Luigi has been shrouded by his brother’s shadow for far too long.  Now in 2013, Nintendo has focused boundless efforts in creating and promoting new games and console designs centered on the green cap hero.  The highlight of this birthday?  New Super Luigi U!

This game will mark history in the Mario Bros. universe as it is Luigi’s first platform game in which he plays the starting role.  Excited?  You better!  I’ve been a Luigi fan since I can remember, even after playing so many Mario centered games throughout my life.  So now that I can enjoy Luigi to his fullest…  It makes my heart feel like a bundle of joy!

Also to celebrate, Nintendo twitted:

Luigi2013

And so I did.  It took me a several minutes to compress all my loving words for Luigi in just 120 characters and have a selfie photoshoot because it was required to send a picture along with the greeting.  I am hardcore geeking out over this…  I really hope I get selected to appear on that digital card!

So what do you think about Nintendo’s Luigi Extravaganza?  See you around!

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Haaaaappy Birthdaaaay tooooo yooouuuuuu! ♫

 
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Posted by on June 19, 2013 in Fanboy, New World Unlocked

 

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Let the console war begin! Part II

Welcome back to LouCyo’s reviews!  In my last entry I summarized the how the PlayStation 4 clobbered the Xbox One.  No matter how you look at it, the PS4 won battle and there’s no question about it.  I believe Xbox is at the bottom of the food chain and will need an act (or several) of whatever devine entities out there to survive once all available consoles and games become available for purchase.  With that said, I can’t forget to review Nintendo’s E3 live stream – which HOLY FUCK it was SOO GOOD!

First up, Pokemon X and Pokemon Y – Cannot. Fucking. WAIT!  AHHH!  Admitting to a hiatus of playing pokémon, I’ve always been a Pokemon fan.  Heck.  Not to long ago I dressed up as Pikachu to an themed event (which I might add I looked adorable).  Nintendo’s presentation of Pokémon X/Y showed exceptionally enhanced graphics in comparison to the ones we are accustomed to on handheld devices.   Pokémon battles have been blessed with more animation and smoother illustration.  Nintento also uncovered the enigma revolving around Sylveon’s Type.  You ready for this?  Sylveon is a Fairy Type pokémon!  Yes.  You read right.  It’s time to brush up on your pokémon knowledge and battle strategies.  It was also revealed that Fairy is Super Effective against Dragon.  Though I am not too ecstatic about it, I’m relieved Sylveon is not any of the types I mentioned on one of my posts earlier this year titled Who’s that Pokémon?! It’s… … Sylveon…? – especially flying.  I would’ve punch a couple of concrete walls…  Nonetheless, an addition that was much anticipated by many since a new Type hasn’t been introduce to the world of pokémon for quite some time now.  New pokémon, new storyline, new world…  I cant wait to throw them pokéballs!

Can we take a second to discuss Super Mario 3D World?!  The best way to describe the level of elation I felt when Super Mario 3DW was announced is to compare it to 10 serious heart attacks combined because of the legendary essence the game embodies.  Super Mario 3DW took me back to my SNES games when I played the CLASSIC Mario Bros. 2 (which if you’ve never played it, find any means necessary to do so…   Even if it means your giving away your unborn child)!  In Super Mario 3DW you’re be able to select 4 iconic characters.  Apart from the obvious choice of Mario, you get to play as Luigi, Princess Peach, and Toad.  Once you do, you’ll run through a 3D landscape stomping on enemies, climbing walls, and collecting coins. Moreover, Super Mario 3DW will offer is a Counter Operative mode which gives the game a nice twist.  Nonetheless, encompassing much of all the Mario-esque fun we love.  Super Mario 3DW will introduce “new power suits” to the Mario Bros. universe and one of these was the Cat Suit – this new suit will let the characters pounce on enemies; scratch foes in the face; and climb up walls.  I can only imagine what other wacky outfits Nintendo has in store.

Let’s move on to some good ol’ Mario Kart!  Wii U will let you enjoy the madness of Mario Kart 8.  The word madness doesn’t even encircle the wonderful chaos of this game.  You’re hovering over walls; gliding through the air; driving through water tunnels…  For goodness’ sake the absence of gravity is implemented in the game – insane!  And I love every single second of it.  The courses look beautiful and I can’t wait to see the character selection and Power Ups.

Yes.  The above picture is exactly what you’re imagining.  Nintendo officially announced that a new Super Smash Bros will be available on 2014 featuring 3 new brawlers: Villager (Animal Crossing), Mega Man, and Wii Fit Trainer girl!  Not much was revealed but we can all anticipated the epicness of this game.  I can’t wait to see the whole brawling crew, the new challenger modes, special power moves…  I’ll stop because I’m hyperventilating…

Above were the games that I believe will be the future highlights of the Wii U in the next upcoming months.  Nintendo presented several other games during their presentation, but I wasn’t really quite enticed.  For example, Wii Party U.  It’s basically Mario Party but with Miis.  You’re on a board; roll dice; move around the board; and play mini games after.  I prefer Mario Parties – they just look more fun and aesthetically pleasing.  Then the Wii Fit…  I go to the gym.  So yeah…  Moving on.  Nintendo did brought up third party games available for the Wii U.  However,  the majority of the games looked like games you can download to mobile devices.  If not, the games are already going to be available on other consoles – no sense of excitement or exclusivity.

Nonetheless, Nintendo always does a great job in keeping a strong fan base even when finding itself not being the most popular or having the highest selling numbers during this console war.  I was wondering why this is and decided to discuss it with one of my best friends in the whole wide world who is a gamer himself.  I believe my friend explained it beautifully. Here’s a snippet of our conversation:

Me: “Would you agree that Nintendo’s ability to stay relevant even when other consoles top the charts is because they overall present more likable characters than other systems?  I’m trying to decipher how Nintendo always seems to stay afloat in the midst of console wars. Like the fucking neutral party in world wars.”

Best friend: “I think it’s due to the fan loyalty it builds. It might not be the best at attracting new fans, but those who try it tend to at least buy their consoles due to the unique experiences they offer.  With other consoles you feel like a consumer. You are objectively deciding whether to buy their consoles based on the merits of their machines and their exclusives. But with [N]intendo it’s more like you’re choosing to join in the goofy fun of an oddball company.”

 

Where there you have it!  Are you excited for the Wii U now?  I know I am!  Let me know what you think. See you around!

 
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Posted by on June 17, 2013 in Battle Royale, Fanboy

 

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Let the console war begin! Part I

It’s here!

Yesterday was E3’s live streaming covering the PS4.  And, boy, what a show!  Sony’s presentation demonstrated why the PlayStation 4 has been proclaimed as “the most powerful console” out there.  Long story short, the PS4 ANNIHILATED Xbox One.  No questions about it.  I was going to review on the Xbox One before this post, but I’ll do it at a later time.  After yesterday’s demonstrations which included PS4 hardware, game play options, and price there is no way I wasn’t going to pay tribute to the PS4’s complete PWNAGE over Xbox One.  So with that, I summarized yesterday’s events into Three Amazing Facts explaining the how beautifully Sony’s PlayStation 4 murdered Microsoft’s Xbox One…  Let’s begin! 

“The PlayStation 4 won’t impose any new restrictions on used games.” – Jack Tretton, president and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment America

Amazing fact #1: No Game Restrictions

Sony staff made it specifically clear that the PS4 will support used games with no difficulty.  That right there was a fatal blow to Microsoft.  Microsoft announced that once an Xbox One game was purchased, the physical copy of the disk served as a license to play the game. The Xbox One will register the game and no other console would be able to use that disk…  Unless they pay for it.  So basically, a “bye-bye” to sharing games with friends and family.  The old days were you could ask  someone for a game just to try it out are over in the Xbox universe.  What kinda fucked up shit is that?!  Thankfully, Sony made an instructional video to help Microsoft understand the “strenuous” process of sharing games.  Oh!  And let’s not forget about the Xbox One NEEDING to be connected to the internet at least once every 24 hours in order to allow gaming – horse shit.  I don’t know about you, but one of the last things I want to worry about is making sure my console is connected to the internet or I’ll be fucked and not be able to play.  No, thank you.  PS4 FTW.  Done.

PS4 listened to the fans and it will show on sales no doubt.  The news of no game restrictions was received with blissful faces and a booming applause from the audience.  On one of my previous entries, I mentioned how one of the PS4’s main cornerstones was to embrace and enhance connectivity between people – and with this decision the company has stayed true to its vision.  Much respect.

Amazing fact #2: Price

I’ll make it sweet and simple: $399.00.  That’s it.  Yes, taxes and all other add-ons will increase the price you will end up paying at the cash register.  However, you’ll get to own the most powerful console known to man by paying less than if you were to buy a 1st gen predecessor.  Fundamentally, you get a console with top notch technology, capacity to play used games, and it’s around $100.00 than it’s “competition…”  Do I need to elaborate more?  Yes!  I can and I will!

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Amazing Fact #3: Game Lineup

Since the PS4 started making it’s product known, Sony has used every second to impress its fans and newcomers alike with its uniqueness.  Microsoft, however, failed to do that.  During the Xbox One presentation, several of its “soon to be hits” games have PlayStation roots.  In what world did Microsoft thought that presenting a solid amount of games which have PlayStation-esque characteristics was such a phenomenal idea?  I have no idea what Microsoft is trying to achieve – it’s a freaking enigma.  On the other hand, Sony comes in strong with titles like Final Fantasy XV, Kingdom Hearts 3, and Destiny.  All with a great fanbase.  All exclusive to the system.  Well fucking played, Sony.

Conclusion: Xbox One has died

With these 3 facts alone, the PlayStation 4 has proved that is will not disappoint – and it’s still not available in stores.  Sony has done an exceptional job not only delivering to gamers what they want, but also learning from the potentially fatal mistakes its competitors have made.  I’m not a PlayStation hardcore fan, but I can recognize an outstanding machine when I see one.  Let us welcome “the most powerful console!”

What are your thoughts on this console war?  Let me know!  See you around!

 
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Posted by on June 12, 2013 in Battle Royale

 

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MoMA MIA! We made it!

Who would of thought that videogames would ever become part of a famous museum?  And not just any museum.  Fourteen classic games have made their way up to the well renowned and celebrated Museum of Modern Art – the MoMa – in New York City!  I don’t know about you, but I think it’s pretty fucking cool.  It takes great artistry to develop a successful videogame and MoMA’s senior curator Paola Antonelli believes it’s time for people appreciate videogame art.  Now available for your viewing pleasure at the MoMA’s Applied Design exhibition, the Philip Johnson Galleries features titles like Pac-Man, Tetris, and The Sims. However, Antonelli’s decision has not been welcomed with open arms by many.  There was even an article titled, “Sorry MoMA, video games are not art.”  But to all those I have one thing to say: go fuck yourselves.

Toru Iwatani. Pac-Man. 1980-1981

“Our criteria, therefore, emphasize not only the visual quality and aesthetic experience of each game, but also the many other aspects—from the elegance of the code to the design of the player’s behavior—that pertain to interaction design.” – Paola Antonelli

The way Antonelli has dissected videogame art is outstanding.  Antonelli’s has specific criteria to which video games are being scrutinized.  Not only taking into consideration the obvious like a game’s aesthetics, but also the aspects of spatial evolution, intervals of emotional gratification, and futuristic behavioral expectations of the players are considered.  She’s not randomly handpicking games or adding displays of the most famouse videogames.  Her vision inspires to learn about videogames whether you’re immerse in the gaming culture or not.  Her incorporation of art of videogame design to the MoMA gives the world the opportunity of a lifetime to admire and gain understanding of video games – which involve more than “just being a pretty picture” and “pushing buttons.”

Apart from displaying printouts frames of the videogames that make the cut, Antonelli and her team are also working on obtaining each of the displayed games’ softwares in case the technology becomes obsolete and no longer available.  This is obviously a well thought out project and it’s being taken seriously.  So I’m not really going to waste my time reading about article that are basically shitting on Antonelli’s modern view of what art is allowed to be.  Especially when it’s not, by not means, discrediting or demeaning other mediums of art.  So to those who are having a fit, take a chill pill and appreciate what video game software has bring to the table.  The same way you enjoy some art styles over others, you can do the same with video game design without discrediting it.  At least give it a try before judging.

I just added visiting MoMA to my bucket list.  Especially when it’s rumored that Super Mario 64, The Legend of Zelda, Super Mario Bros., Chrono Trigger, and the infamous celphone game Snake will be added to the exhibition.  What are your thoughts?  See you around!

 
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Posted by on June 6, 2013 in Battle Royale, New World Unlocked

 

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