While the Vagary staff is comprised of a large group of like-minded individuals, that group has an eclectic range of tastes. What’s Up With Vagary is a chance for a selection of our staff to fill you in on what is sucking up the majority of their time during the past week.
Kyle Baron – Editor in Chief
I haven’t seen a cartoon show about what it’s like to finish going to school for something you loved only to face an uncertain future of soul-crushing underemployment and rejected job applications. Mission Hill, the late ’90s cartoon by Simpsons veterans Josh Weinstein and Bill Oakley, is a mirror for my life and a sort of cathartic comedy all at once.
I picked up the complete series of Mission Hill for $20 CDN on Amazon after last week’s Twisted Metal reminded me of how great the ’90s were. The 13 episode show uses its light comedy sitcom formula to touch on a lot of the issues in the small worlds that twenty-something’s inhabit, and this is thanks to its cadre of characters: Andy French, the main character, is a 24 year old cartoonist stuck selling waterbeds to make ends meet while he drowns his crushed dreams with bitter remarks and weekends of drinking. Kevin, his academic 17 year old brother, moves in with Andy and starts going through the process of matching his parent-driven do-gooder philosophy against the harsh and strange real world he’s confronted with. Jim, Andy’s lifelong friend, has struck lucky and has a life working in a high class Ad Agency where he gets paid for doing very little work at all. Posey is their eccentric twenty something roommate who is perfectly content to live downtown and drift through an urban hippy existence of holistic medicine and selling organic vegetables.
The writing is clever, though the comedy doesn’t hit the same ingenious notes as other ’90s TV series such as Daria. The show hits the right anecdotes that still remain relevant. Whether you have ever envied the post-academic success of a friend or if you’ve been tempted to advance in a career you never wanted, Mission Hill is worth watching. Just don’t expect to laugh as often as you identify with the series.
Ryan Kenward – Owner Vagary.TV
This week I took another stab at the Diablo 3 Beta. When I first played the beta several months back, I had mixed feelings on it. On one hand, I felt that it remained true to the franchise and would be fun, on the other I was left with more to desire in the way of the game’s appearance. However, going back and taking a second look, I began to notice some of the subtle beauties of the game. I also found myself much more interested in the story this time. Prior to this second play through, I would have guessed Diablo 3 would be getting scored a 4 out of 5 on Vagary, now I am leaning closer to a 5 out of 5. I’m very excited to play the full version of the game now! Other than that, I will be making a cross country move this coming week so I will be “out of the office” for the next week or so. Happy gaming everyone!
Don Parsons – Publisher Relations Liaison and Review Staff
Per last week, I mentioned renting WWE 12 from the video store (after taking Kingdoms of Amalur back) and I didn’t get a chance to play it much for last week’s feature. I haven’t followed wrestling in years, though for some weird reason I consider myself a fan still. I played the story mode and not knowing what in the world was going on, found it confusing and un-entertaining. But one of the great things about wrestling games is the create-a-wrestler feature. So I spent a few hours in there, and then tackled the “WWE Universe” mode. This is essentially a season that you can insert your character into and take them to the top of the rankings.
I won the Royal Rumble, won the World Heavyweight Championship, and defended it for four months. I’m not going to lie, I had a lot of fun. I haven’t played online, as I have no interest in it, and I haven’t gotten back into the “Story”. Sadly, I have to take it back soon. After playing it for a week, this may be a game I pick up for $30 in the next month or two. It was fun to play a few matches while the kids were winding down for bed, then hop into my attention-consuming multiplayer games.
The SSX demo also caught my attention, and wow was I impressed. I initially went into it thinking, “Meh, it is going to be Tony Hawk on snow” but I was sorely mistaken. After I finished the first event and saw I beat my wife’s best-friends score, I nodded in approval, and decided to tackle the course again. Needless to say, after beating my own score, my wife’s friend had trumped my score! I texted her and cussed her out (jokingly, of course). The leaderboard implementation alone makes me want to buy the game.
Lastly, I finished True Blood season four. WOW what an ending. As the season started, I was losing interest, but boy oh boy did they pick things back up, and I can say I am finally a fan- four seasons later.
So that is what we have been up to, what about you? Fill us in by dropping us a comment.