We Love, we hate

We Love:

Unlikely allies:
After the national tragedy of this week's Virginia Tech shooting, it's difficult to imagine a positive side - but we're nonetheless relieved to see prominent media figures come forward to say games aren't the real problem. Anti-game activist Jack Thompsongot yelled at on national TV by Chris Matthews and then slammed in an MSNBC article. Rush Limbaugh downplayed the supposed dangers of videogames on his radio show. It's true that neither Matthews nor Limbaugh are known for being entirely logical or reasonable, but it's a surprise to see any alliesemerge from the mainstream media. It's certainly better than the panicked calls for censorship we were all expecting.

Pimp my robot:
In 2005, Osaka passed a law that made sex touters - people who would stand on the sidewalk and aggressively encourage passersby to patronize various sex clubs - illegal. According to Pink Tentacle, the latest response from the sex club industry has been to employ robots to take over the dirty work. After all, the law applies to humans and not machines, right? The idea of anime-styled pimp-bots with wacky hair and sailor suits touting the services of love hotels and massage parlors makes us laugh out loud.

Return of the creepy:
After months of silence and rumors of cancellation, the PSP entry in a certain horror series suddenly lurched out of the fog and into our office this week. We can't reveal too much until Monday, but we can say that it's undergone some dramatic changes that'll make fans extremely happy. Stay tuned.

Master Chief and Samus get it on in Haloid
Not like that, gutterbrain. Well, actually yeah, kinda like that. Fanfic-turned-movie Haloid combines two well known sci-fi worlds and smashes them together in an orgy of laser blasts, alien guts and Matrix clichés. On the one hand, our Nintendo editor absolutely lovedHaloidfor appropriately using all of the Metroid heroine's powers and proving she's more than a match for this up-and-comer Chief fellow. The flick also has some spectacular choreography at times.

On the other hand, the "surprise" ending of Master Chief being an Asian chick in tight black leather reeks of fan fiction in the worst way (unless it's the female Spartan from Dead or Alive 4?) - though there are admittedly plenty of GamesRadar horndogs who didn't mind a bit. The sexed-up dance number at the end doesn't help either. But while it lasts, it's a great way to kill a few minutes. Props again for using a super-cool remix from Super Metroid that game music fans can download at www.ocremix.org. Then again, game music fans probably already have it on their play lists.

Note to Microsoft and Nintendo: Don't sue this guy - just make this game. Right now.

We Hate:

Usual suspects blame games for VT tragedy:
Mere hours had passed since the tragedy at Virginia Tech University before professional game-hater Jack Thompson and, later, pseudo-psychiatrist Dr. Phil jumped on the podium to postulate that videogames were to blame for Cho Seung Hui's ability carry out a deadly shooting rampage on April 16, 2007. Since then, signs showing that Cho was a lonely, and disturbed individual - whose dorm room didn't contain a single video game - have surfaced.

Blaming games for cultivating Cho's aggression towards others and training him to kill is a disservice to the victims and their families. Can we please take a break from using the mass murder of 32 students to push our personal agendas and try to fix the real problems in society?

Sony bickers with itself over PS3 price:
Sony President Ryoji Chubachi got the rumor mill going yesterday when he told Japan's Financial Times that Sony is "re-examining" its strategy for the PS3 regarding pricing and volume. Translation: the millions of PS3s Sony shipped out haven't been selling as quickly as the company had anticipated, and price may be the problem. But Sony immediately quashed the rumors - and our raised hopes - with an announcement that it had no plans for a price drop. Make up your minds, guys.

April 20, 2007