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.
Khristopher Reardon – News & Reviews Team
I saw The Woman in Black against my will. It isn’t because these movies scare me; it’s because horror movies that see wide release tend to rehash the same themes and load it full of jump scares rather than real horror. I never even saw a trailer for the thing but my girlfriend wanted to see it so I gave it a whirl. I had no expectations for this movie and somehow it still left me disappointed.
The movie is about a lawyer, played by Daniel “Harry Potter” Radcliffe going to a small village to get this woman’s papers in order after she had passed away. The house is apparently haunted by a womanly apparition dressed entirely in black, clichés ensue. The movie is filled with cheap jump scares and the bulk of the ‘characters’ feel interchangeable and are ultimately forgettable. This movie feels long, padded, boring and empty; the lady in black and the movie isn’t scary.
On a more chipper note, I finally went back to an old JRPG I never finished, Xenogears, a Squaresoft game released back in 1998 for the original Playstation. I caught it on the download off of PSN. It’s a fantasy meets cyberpunk kind of setting, with sparse populations, small towns, kingdoms and giant mechs. I haven’t gotten back to where I was in the game 10 years ago but I’m having fun with it.
Tony Odett – Reviews Team
In high school, my friends and I used to ninja rope and bazooka my friends to death in the original classic Worms. This week, I got to hop online and play the newest version of the game, Worms: Ultimate Mayhem. This is a 3-D re-imagining, and manages to capture the alternating feelings of joy and dismay that you got in its predecessors. I was initially concerned about the effect the 3-D environments would have on the game, but with a mix of top down, third person, and first person viewpoints, the game uses it in a stellar manner. I also got to blast Don Parson’s worms into oblivion, which was a treat (DIE DON’S WORMS! DIE). The single player, not so great, but the multiplayer (both local and online) is a ton of fun.
I also finished Kingdoms of Amalur (review available on Vagary as we speak). Fantastic game. Go buy it, play it, and tell your friends about it. It’s nice to see a real solid effort in the action RPG genre. It has a massive world, with tons to do, and is really fun to play. There’s a ton of loot, and the combat/magic/abilities are really well designed. I wouldn’t try to pronounce any of the names out loud though. People will think that you’ve sneezed. TUATHA. See?
Chris Scott – Review Editor
Games? Yeah, I played a lot of them this week. Grand Slam Tennis 2, Lumines: Electronic Symphony, Syndicate, SSX and Uncharted: Golden Abyss all got major play time as I work on getting the reviews out for them. But none of them held a candle to seeing Guns N’ Roses live on Monday night. Sure, at this point, the band is just Axl Rose and a gaggle of hired guitar players but I’ll be damned if they did not put on one hell of a rock concert. They played nearly everything you would want to hear over the course of their three hour long set and Axl looked and sounded great.
Seeing this show in a small venue was a really special treat. It forced the band, which has long relied on outlandish stage spectacles, to rely on the reason everyone was there, the music. And the crowd ate it up, singing along and partying to nearly every song. Axl may be long past his prime but late on a Monday night, for three short hours, inside a warehouse bar in Philly, time rolled back and Guns N’ Roses was once again the biggest band in the world.
So that is what we have been up to, what about you? Fill us in by dropping us a comment.