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.
Ryan Kenward – Vagary Owner
I can distinctly recall being in the sixth grade back in 1998 when Pokémon first burst onto the scene. I have fond memories of bus ride battles with my good friend Kyle on our brick sized Game Boys that featured that lovely urine green monochrome screen. Those were the days… I had the red version and my friend Kyle had blue, we used to debate over which was better. “Red version has Ekans” “Blue version has Sandshrew!” It was a brilliant marketing strategy, as I would eventually get the blue version as well. Consequently, I’d also be the first person in my area to get all 150 Pokémon. Recently, I had a conversation with my sister and her boyfriend about Pokémon and all of these fun filled memories came rushing back. A few days later, here I am once again playing the blue version.
The first two installments of the franchise really do stand the test of time. They are just as fun today as they were 14 years ago. The much simpler dynamics of the original games make for a more pure and enjoyable experience. In my personal opinion, I feel the series has become a bit convoluted now having Pokémon that are four different varieties, which had been expanded several times over each iteration. We now have steel-psychic-water-super-duper Pokémon, whereas in its humble origins we had fire, grass, and water. The much simpler dynamics lead to a “Rock, Paper, Scissors” experience, grass beats water, water beats fire, fire beats grass. Straight forward enough, and it would also allow you to create very versatile teams. Perhaps I’m just getting old, but in playing newer installments I don’t get this experience anymore. As I make my way through the game for what must be the hundredth time now, I can clearly see why Pokémon became such a phenomenon. The trading card game, the TV series, the movies, the manga series; all of it was very exciting at the time.
Looking back on my childhood, and comparing to kids today I find myself a bit saddened. The sixth graders of today are playing Call of Duty and other first person shooters and I feel like they are really missing out on games like Pokémon. Pokémon was wholesome fun that taught us all to be hoarders, but in my mind it is better than being a camper.
Don Parsons – Public Relations Manager
I began the week with Starhawk and Awesomenauts. Starhawk was a disaster (if you haven’t read out review, you can find it here and while I enjoyed the article that came from it (which can be found here ), I did not enjoy actually playing it at all. Well, except when I caught Kyle Baron (Vagary.tv’s Editor-in-Chief) playing and we spent 20 minutes riding around in an empty world chatting about it. It had some solid ideas, but nothing actually amounted to anything enjoyable during my three hours playing online.
Max Payne has also been on the agenda. I haven’t gotten far, but I can see why people are praising the game. The first few chapters were a little slow, but the story has finally started to pick up in Chapter 4. As with any Rockstar game, the production value puts most games to shame. I really enjoy playing online; Deathmatch has been a lot of fun.
Lastly, it’s almost the end of Glee. Not to spoil anything but this week’s episode was Nationals, and like every other “Nationals” episode, it’s a very emotional experience if you are a fan of the show. Song selection was hit or miss, with a few winners (Rachel’s Celine Dion’s “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now” really stood out) and a few “shoot me now” choices (“Pinball Wizard” by The Who was the worst). Next week is the finale, so I’m pretty sad to see some of my favorites leave.
So that is what we have been up to, what about you? Fill us in by dropping us a comment.