Consumption

Thoughts on things I’ve experienced.

God of War (2018)

You know, I was a bit dubious when I heard that God of War was going to be resurrected. My leeriness increased when I heard it was going to be a beardy Norse father-son adventure.

Kratos has a big vocab, folks.

Thankfully, my doubts were misplaced. Because the 2018 game has proven to be one of the best – if not the best – in the series. I absolutely loved it.

Well, mostly.  But we’ll get to that.

(There’ll likely be some spoilers in here too, so be mindful if you’ve not played it yet.)

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Goodreads review: Akira, Vol. 1

Akira, Vol. 1Akira, Vol. 1 by Katsuhiro Otomo.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

So, you’ve probably seen the 1988 animated film with this name. You know, with motorcycles and a whole lot of screaming testosterone haircuts with axes to grind and heads to explode. And so you’re expecting this to be pretty much the same thing, right?

That’s a pretty good assumption.
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Goodreads review: Shots

ShotsShots by Don Walker.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Laconic and dry. That’s probably the write-up you’ve got in mind for Shots, songwriter Don Walker’s first book. And you’re probably not all that far wrong. But that reductionism is a disservice: The book is dry, with one economical eye on the door, but there’s a lot more going on.

The book is an autobiography, more or less, but it’s not a lot like that of his on-again off-again bandmate Tex Perkins, say. It’s a collection of images gathered together under the names of places that exist, or are a state of mind – Home, Carr’s Creek, Kings Cross, The Road, Paris and so on – but they flit, moment to moment. (more…)

Goodreads review: Moby-Dick

Moby-DickMoby-Dick by Herman Melville.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars.

I’m not entirely sure what the purpose of reviewing Moby-Dick is.

I mean, really.

It’s the sort of book that will always be part of the canon, and I imagine people will always feel guilty about having not read it, or will imagine that it’ll be a lot harder going than anything else.

Which is kind of a shame, because it really is pretty delightful.
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Goodreads review: Errol Flynn: The Untold Story

Errol Flynn: The Untold StoryErrol Flynn: The Untold Story by Charles Higham.
My rating: 2 of 5 stars.

First things first.

I couldn’t get that bloody tune out of my head the whole time I was reading so it’s only fair you have to deal with it now too. It seems likely songwriters Reyne and McDonough had read Higham’s book, because the lyrics specifically make reference to the meat of the work: the supposition that the Tasmanian thespian dipsomaniacal klepto satyromanic was also a dyed-in-the-wool anti-Semite and Nazi.

Yeah. (more…)

Mirror’s Edge Catalyst (2016)

So you already know that I’m a fan of Mirror’s Edge despite the game’s own attempts to cut itself off at the knees. I’ve replayed it and when I found there was going to be another game in the series, I was very excited, given that games like this aren’t really made very often. It was one of the reasons (not the reason, I admit) I bought a PS4. And now, I’ve had a chance to play it.

So I guess I’ve played it, if nothing else.

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Mirror’s Edge (2008)

Time to revisit something I’ve played a couple of times that involves bike couriers, only with cleaner duds, more tattoos, and a shitload more parkour than pedalling.

It’s got animated cutscenes! It’s got a megalopolis that’s keen on brushing undesirables under the rug! And it’s got some curiously disinterested acting across the board. It’s Mirror’s Edge, perhaps one of the best examples of a game I love even though so much of what it does is cack-handed or busted.

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Darksiders (2010) and The Order: 1886 (2015)

A twofer, this post. I’ve recently finished playing both the games mentioned here – a trip to a hellish future and a dip into alternate-history London, respectively – and I figured I didn’t have enough to say about ’em individually. So I’ve lumped them together here, in some kind of ungodly union.

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Your humble author.

So, I hope you’re prepared for some half-arsed critique, because I’ve got that in spades.

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Goodreads review: Powers of Darkness

Powers of Darkness: The lost version of Dracula.Powers of Darkness: The lost version of Dracula by Bram Stoker and Valdimar Ásmundsson.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars.

This book serves as a re-translation of an early Icelandic translation of Bram Stoker’s bitey classic, Dracula. The Icelandic version of the Count’s tale dropped in 1900, only two years after the first translation (into Hungarian), and is notable because there’s evidence – lovingly detailed in forewords, afterwords and footnotes – that Stoker was in touch with the Icelandic translator of the work, Valdimar Ásmundsson, founder of the newspaper Fjallkonan, providing information from draft versions of the English text to work with.
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Assassin’s Creed Syndicate (2015)

I spent some time back in London over the past week or so. It’s been 20 years since I’d been in the Great Wen, but I visited its 1860s facsimile to carry out a bit of neck-stabbing along with the sightseeing.

It’s been a reasonable break since I last visited the Assassin’s Creed universe. Last time I played an AC game, I was kind of underwhelmed with the experience. This time, though? A different story.

Well, mostly.  (more…)