Monthly Archives: January 2010

Pwned for par

I made a bit of a mistake today – I turned on the PS3 and popped MAG into the disc drive. I don’t say mistake because it’s a bad game – I haven’t played it enough to form any coherent opinion on it yet*. I say mistake because, as an online shooter, it is full of the worst people in the world. The kind who exist to both make my life hell and to show us that, actually, gaming is the pursuit of utter wanktwats. And not fine, socially-adjusted, interesting, witty, fun, outgoing, fashionable, upstanding members of the community like myself.

Rather than go into the usual rant about these plebeians and their uncouth manner, I will instead approach from a different angle. No, I’m not going to question why the ones with headsets feel the need to sing at you all the time, or why others decide it would be the best of ideas to play music at you all the time, or what exactly is so funny about someone being foreign all the time, or why we don’t in fact want to hear the inane babbling of a 14-year-old American kid all the time (leave that shit to me, fool), or – of course – why people feel the need to call you a ‘faggot nigger Jew cunt’ all the time.

No, these are questions we could not answer even if we wanted to, for the reasons why they happen simply do not exist. There is no logical basis for why any one of these things occur all the time, never mind ALL of them. In fact, the very thought that all of the above things go on all the time in games like MAG, Modern Warfare 2, Halo and the like offers up a bulletproof argument that there is, indeed, no god.

Where was I? Ah yes – online etiquette. Playing games. You’re mucking about, get over it. Don’t sing, unless it’s funny. Don’t insult, unless it’s funny. Basically, what I’m saying is: why aren’t all online communities exactly the same as on Everybody’s Golf World Tour? Never before had I played a game online against strangers and managed to go more than twenty minutes without being called a ‘wop kike coon homo’ (or some variation thereof) until I fired up EG. The people aren’t just polite; they’re encouraging, friendly and seem to genuinely want to have a good game, rather than just insult you and scream bloody murder should you win.

Basically what I’m saying is that I want to be a cyber-50-year-old man.


*It’s a bit shit though, if we’re being totally honest.


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Past prattle… pattle

Well how the hell am I supposed to follow up yesterday’s masterclass in blogging style? Well, for one by not being so drunk it takes me half an hour to write 200 words. And for two, some classic Dransfield Photoshop skills. You all love it so dearly. WARNING: This entry is about games, so if you don’t care about them then piss off somewhere else.

Anywho, today saw the purchase of some monies for my PlayStation Network account – the shop for games, add-ons etc on the PS3, for those who don’t know and surely care a great deal. After purchasing the new Vandal Hearts, because it’s the new Vandal Hearts*, a few other things popped into the basket – all PSOne ‘classics’, and all things I’m surely going to play for about half an hour before discarding them for another 10 years. What the hell is it with nostalgia? Why is it such a powerful beast? And why does it inevitably turn out to be a waste of time? And money? QUESTIONS?

“But old games is grate!” I hear you spew like a moron, as you are a moron. They’re not. It’s not the games you love, it’s the notion of the past; the thought that these are from a better time when things were more innocent, and you didn’t live in a house WHERE PEOPLE KEEP ON SLAMMING THE DOORS LIKE THEY’RE ACTUALLY DARING YOU TO GO DOWN THERE AND STAB THEM IN THEIR IDIOTIC, BOURNEMOUTHIAN FACES.


I remember trawling the Home of the Underdogs til the early hours on a regular basis (yes, I am SUPER COOL). It was a wonderful place where you could find all manner of old games to download and piss about with (not now, mind, as it died a death years ago – it is slowly being rebuilt, however). The thing is, I have much fonder memories of just reading through the site, of finding these hidden/forgotten gems, than of actually getting to play them. Let’s be honest here – most old games are a bit shit. Ignoring how hard they are (were, actually, thanks to DOSBox) to get working, they were often badly designed with a poor interface, they were unable to give you even the slightest clue as to what you’re supposed to be doing and they were invariably incredibly hard.

It was the chase – the hunt – that was such an exciting part for the younger, exactly as nerdy as now me. It’s the same today with modern retro releases (what an odd turn of phrase), only now there’s no real chase any more. It’s all been monetised, we’re all herded in to the same places – Steam, Good Old Games, PSN, Xbox Live – to buy the same 20-year-old crap and it’s just become too easy. There’s no fun in it. So I’m just going to play Resident Evil 2, which I have just downloaded. It won’t be as satisfying as the time I managed to track down a working download of Daggerfall and used my 56k connection to get the bugger, but hey – nothing’s ever as good as it was in the past. Right?

In summation: Old games are great until you play them – except for Syndicate, AvP and UFO: Enemy Unknown. Those three will remain ridiculously stunning until the day I die, and none of you can come up with a counter-argument to this that I’ll actually listen to.

*This is a new version of another classic game. One I can probably put on the list with Syndicate, UFO and AvP, actually. TEMPTING. But no.


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Late entry to the drunkicon

This counts, because I’ve not been to bed since I woke up. THEREFORE it’s just one day. Good god It’s hard to hit the keys I want.

There are many different types of drunken people, and they all react to the DEVIL’S BREW in different ways. I, for example, tend to stand tall and stoic, looking like no one can fell this giant when in actual fact all you need to do is sing some ABBA at me and I’m on the floor. It’s a fine technique that I’ve honed over the years and it results in many friends saying things like “I didn’t even know you were drunk” and the like. Trust me – I was.

Then we have the foolish drunks, who get a few bevvies inside them and let just about everything loose. Sorry kids, but just keep some of it for the imagination, instead of just being a big drunk prick who gets naked at the first sign of half a pint of shandy. Not naming any names.

Can you tell this is down the path of naming drunk types? It’s easy to do this bit when I’ve had a few shandies myself.

My favourite is probably the all-outer, who drinks so much they can no longer see, communicate or… well – live. These tend to be the ones that are either lightweights or overdrinkers (a phrase I’ve just invented, yet one I’m sure has been used before). They are the most amusing of the drinkers, and the ones that make us continue to try and destroy our most hardy of the organs – the liver.

Apologies both for the fact this is a shit entry, and the fact I’m so very inebriated right now. All spelling mistakes/typos are courtesy of BEER. I love you all. Good night.


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My dog was better than your dog

I have a dead dog. She did a dead just before Christmas 2003, meaning I can quote another dead family member in my Granddad and say “what a Christmas!” Though the thing there is he was writing on a piece of his bomber he had kept after hacking his way out of it, as it had just crashed during the Second World War (that’s an odd sentence – it didn’t crash during the entirety of WWII, as that would be a ridiculously long crash. You get the point. Shut up). So anyway, the point there was it’s not really comparable.

My reason for saying it is clearly more necessary. Obviously.

Anyway, my dog was called Krissy, and was a cross-breed between a something and a something else. We never actually knew. She was a fat bastard, and while she often claimed it was a genetic thing it was actually because – quite literally – the only food she didn’t eat was lettuce. In fact, she ate much more than just food, what with her being a dog and all. Nature’s scrubbers. I think horse shit was something of a delicacy to the little wanker.

People often claim dogs are intelligent, as they can recognise commands, use phones, build Hadron Colliders and other such nonsense. Well, I think my dog must have been retarded. We used to take her for walks in Creighton Woods in the town where I grew up – on one such walk we encountered an abandoned den clearly made by some local kids/vagabonds. In the middle of the discarded paraphernalia was a decent-sized section of what I can only describe as rigging (think pirate ships if you don’t know what I’m on about) on the floor. Now, my dog was inquisitive – she probably thought there were pies somewhere around – so she trotted around looking for something to gorge on. No sooner had she began the food quest that she found herself tangled by the legs in this rigging (think pirate ships if you don’t know what I’m on about) with a dumbfounded look on her face. If dogs are capable of looking dumbfounded. A swift lifted rescue occurred, obviously needing four men to carry the chunky bugger, and we set off to explore more of the verdant surroundings.

Not five minutes later, the dog was missing. A bit of a look around and a few calls of her name later we found her, back tangled in the rigging (think pirate ships if you don’t know what I’m on about) with a thoroughly perplexed look on her face. This happened an additional two times before she finally learned to stop getting caught in the rigging (think pirate ships if you don’t know what I’m on about) with a stupefied look on her face, as it really annoyed us. Later that same day she dug up a cat that was buried in a vertical-facing death-pose (think pirate shi… oh wait). Seriously – the thing was buried vertically and when she pulled it out of the ground it looked like the thing was jumping straight up, out of the gates of hell.

This is why dogs are amazing, yes, but it’s why my dog was better than every other dog in the world. That’s not even mentioning the time she decided that the stick she would pick up – while my brother and I were walking on a path just wide enough for the both of us – would be a whole branch. Then she decided to gallop down the path from behind us, past us. That dog was a complete, total and utter remmer of the highest order. She was also utterly hilarious and an absolute joy from the day we got her to the day she decided to stop functioning as a living being. VERDICT: 10/10

I have no idea why this came about. I suppose it’s the risk you take when you say you’ll write something every day. I saw someone with a dog earlier, it gets me reminiscing. Yes, it’s about as dull as listening to someone recount their dreams, but SHUT UP.


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Things to do before the big three-oh

Much as you lovely ladies out there don’t want to accept it, I am in fact getting on in life. In three-and-a-half years I will be 30, and with it I will finally become a Full Adult. I will be able to grow a beard, avoid bubble gum, stop finding pictures of penises funny, cease to play video games and wear more leather jackets with tweed elbow pads.

Before my worthwhile time on this earth is up, however, I would like to accomplish some things. As such I have devised a list which I intend to complete every step of before I reach the astonishingly ancient age of 30. Read on, and hopefully help me out with what I think will be the biggest Challenge Ianeka we have ever seen:

1. Write something funny for radio/television/whatever wider audience there is.

2. Get myself out of debt, at least in part.

3. Eat enough beans for a random passer-by to exclaim “that’s a lot of beans!”

4.Through a bean-based diet, lose some weight.

5. Following bean-exclamation and subsequent bean-diet, get as buff as Buff Bagwell (the clue’s in his name, amazingly).

6. Give up all hope of writing for telly, instead opt to reform Sharkey and George, crime-busters of the sea. On stage.

7. See the Queen naked.

8. See Queen naked.

9. Play Mass Effect 2 45 times.

10. Re-write this list with more beans-based steps.

I genuinely hope you can find it in your hearts to help me out in my ceaseless endeavours. With your support and my strength of will, incredible character, astounding charm, fabulous good looks, rapist wit, mind-blowing sexiness, quite big height and life-changing haircut, we can make this list of tomorrow’s hope become a list of today’s success.


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One previous owner

Having picked up Terminator 2 (Skynet Edition) on Blu-ray recently, I am now the proud owner of the Greatest Film Ever Made in no less than five different forms: pirated VHS, purchased VHS, director’s cut recorded from TV on VHS, Ultimate Edition DVD and finally this latest addition. I know you’re impressed. I am. After all, who wouldn’t want to have lots of different versions of what is essentially the same film, just with added bits here and there and different audio tracks or varying visual fidelity? Only a fool, quite clearly. Though I’m obviously not totally committed as I’ve missed out on a couple of other releases. I’ll blame a hangover, or something.

This made me think of all the times I’ve ‘traded up’ on something that really didn’t need to be changed or improved upon at all. One of the best examples was buying series one to four of South Park on their original UK releases, only to dump them when the American releases came about years later. Why? Umm… five minute commentaries on episodes? Yes, that’ll do as a reason, I’m sure. Granted, the UK versions were essentially retired at series four, but I’m sure even if I’d owned more of them I’d have been more than happy to trade up.

But why? What’s the point? Some barely-recognisable benefit over the original? Terminator 2 is the best example of this, with the Blu-ray release offering nothing over the mega-super-ultra DVD which was re-released about fifteen different times, beyond an increased visual quality that’s not that much of an increase over the upscaled DVD on my not-that-great TV.

And you know what? I couldn’t give two sods about it. I’m going to keep on buying these incremental updates to the movies I love. I would make that into a magical List of Three, with something like ‘movies I love, games I play and albums I listen to’ but, well – that would be a lie. It’s only movies that really get away with this behaviour. I’m still waiting on the Aliens series to be released on Blu-ray so I can upgrade my already upgraded-once-from-VHS-twice-from-DVD series, and as for Star Wars? Well that’s pushing into T2 territory for Most Updated award.

It could be argued that games fall into this trap, mind you, with the incremental yearly updates of sports games (and lately things like Call of Duty). I do tend to upgrade once a year, on the dot when something with next year in its title comes along. See: FIFA, Football Manager, Smackdown vs Raw etc. This, of course, ignores the likes of Resident Evil which – while it has been re-released countless times – hasn’t seen much in the way of incremental updates. More: no updates at all. I still haven’t let them off for the Gamecube versions of Resi 2 and 3.

It’s interesting, but I can’t be bothered analysing the behaviour or why I do it. Nor am I going to bother trying to correct it or limit it in any way. After all, they might release another version of Predator soon, and that’s something the whole world needs.

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I hate adverts. No witty title here – I just do

I’m sure this is an attitude held by most of you out there who have some smarts about you, even if you will still let some ads off for having a ‘cute’ jingle, a ‘HILARIOUS’ slogan or a ‘fucking annoying’ character in them. But I hate adverts. I really do. Not in the “oh god, ads are on, I’m going to make a cup of tea” way. I will actually stay right where I am so I can watch these things, so I can take them in, analyse them, think about what prompted them, what they’re trying to say and what they’re all about in order to be able to truly tear them limb from limb. It’s the old-fashioned trait of having a borderline obsession with your mortal enemy.

It would be possible for me to simply list all the recent adverts I’ve seen and what’s wrong with them, why you should want to shoot yourself every time they’re on and why we are poorer as a species for the fact they exist. But there’s no need – there are others out there doing just this, doing it better and doing it in a handy, list-o-blog thing for easy dissemination. And after ten minutes of hardcore searching (I’ve forgotten what the site I was thinking about is called), I can present you with no link whatsoever. Bollocks. Needless to say, it’s great. Just go to this one, even though I’ve not read it properly and it wasn’t the one I was thinking of. (EDIT: Ash found it, like a king amongst men. Go here)

In lieu of a link to a better site, I’ll just have to put one example here for you. Let’s watch a classic clip from one of the best comedy shows ever made, Big Train: GO. Now let’s watch the recent RightMove advert and try our hardest to spot some similarities. GO. It’s not the most blatant rip-off in the history of the world (hello Coors/Flight of the Conchords, you absolutely sickening cunts), but it’s still damn irritating. Come up with your own ideas you whiny, awful, pathetic little parasites. We’re all guilty of taking inspiration from others – it’s how we grow in a creative medium (see: this very blog, taken from the ideas of others) – but there’s a point when you’re just cruising by, making money hand-over-fist through ripping off the ideas of those who actually bothered to sit around and have an original thought. I honestly could not give two shits if most people in marketing were to just die tomorrow. In fact, this rant isn’t even original. It was done many times over by someone who was far angrier about it than I could ever be.

Much as it pains me to link to a Bill Hicks clip, I will. Here. It’s not that I don’t want to link to the man – he was brilliant, obviously, and the world is worse off for his death etc, etc, etc. But I’ve been around far too many self-righteous hippy/alternative/trendy students who will talk about the man as if he’s some kind of unknown quantity. Fact: everyone who knows good comedy knows Bill Hicks. I wouldn’t have stand-up comedians as my specialist subject on Mastermind, don’t get me wrong, I’m not claiming to have ridiculous levels of comi-knowledge. I’m not being arrogant. I… look: we know about him, alright? Shut up. He was very good, he wasn’t the funniest man in the world, nor did he always speak the incontrovertible truth. He was just really fucking good and absolutely necessary.

Though, those of you who aren’t familiar with his work just rape Youtube for all his clips. Fantastic stuff, and still just as pertinent today, so long as you switch out the cultural references for more modern ones. Or just leave them as they are, should you get off on satire based around New Kids on the Block.

Where was I?

I don’t just hate all these awful, awful rip-off adverts – I also hate the ones that are just so mind-numbingly bad you hope that 99942 Apophis actually will hit us. Just to release us from the unending vomit of “GO COMPAAAARE”, “simples!”, “one one eiiight, twenty-four seven…” and all the rest of this inexcusable shite that has the temerity to get embedded in my head. Yes, that’s my main issue with all of this – I hate them, I want them all to piss off and die, I will fight to my last breath to end them all but… well – they’re winning. I’m aware of their products, of their adverts, of their campaigns and the style they’re going with this month. They’re making me hate myself a bit more than normal.

Fuck you, adverts. This is without even getting into the minefield that is targeted advertising in video games, on Facebook and the like. Gah.


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Shared housing? More like SHIT housing. HAHAHAHA

Shared housing is a big bag of sweaty balls (sometimes literally, depending on how many men you live with), and I don’t like it. I still have to do it, because otherwise I wouldn’t be able to afford the beans I like so very much, nor the fake Pot Noodles. It’s an unfortunate situation, but as soon as I’m not crippled by debt I may be able to get my ass out of there and away to somewhere where I can actually live how I want to without some pathetic, petty nonsense causing someone to complain at me.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not talking about living with friends here – I don’t really class that as shared housing per se. Though it does come with its own problems, it’s nowhere near as bad as the minefield of fury that is living with, as they say, “randoms”. The main reason for this is quite obvious – I could go into details of individual examples, but that would be boring and irritating. For me. The main reason is this: random people are exactly the same as strangers, strangers are members of the public and – as we all know – members of the public are contemptible shrews of humanity. Boring, devoid of positive elements of their so-called personality, petty, ugly and stupid. Very stupid. Basically, it all boils down to this.

Oh wait, I live in shared housing. Damn.

Sorry this entry’s a bit phoned-in today. Lacking any drive to rant/joke about anything and I only have one hand to type with. First person to make a wanking joke wins the prize.

P.S. I feel a bit daft about yesterday’s entry, as it turns out this weekend has been one solely comprising of ITV coverage. Curse you, FA Cup. You mean my praise of Sky was less relevant than it should have been, and that I had to put up with Tyldesley saying clubs should have some kind of long throw training, and that he was surprised clubs didn’t have players capable of long throws, aside from Stoke. The man is a fucking dillweed.


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I really, genuinely hate Clive Tyldesley, Peter Drury and Mark Lawrenson

As I’m in the land of Sky Sports – that is, my girlfriend’s place – I am in a strange and wonderful land. A land of Andy Gray, Martin Tyler, Geoff Stelling, Jamie Redknapp, some of the other ones who aren’t that bad and Paul Merson. It is, frankly, a wonderful place. It isn’t wonderful because of the most incisive, cutting and downright smart commentary – no, Tyler seems to be getting worse in his old age and Redknapp went from being the Great White Hope of punditry into just being a dim goit who advertises holidays with his ageless beauty of a wife.

You had so much potential, Jamie. You argued with Andy. Why have you gone boring again?

Anyway, this world of football pundits, commentators and all the other ones inbetween isn’t special because of their quality – it’s special because of their lack of lack of quality. It wouldn’t be this way were it not for the fact that Clive Tyldesley, Peter Drury and Mark Lawrenson exist. No, really – they do. Look it up. They’re even backed up by Graeme Le Saux, David Pleat and that bloke who used to do F1 and who still looks out of place. If these piles of human-shaped excrement didn’t exist then the Sky lot wouldn’t be that special. They’d be poor-to-adequate at best. Bar Gray, who despite the doubters is still one of the best pundits and commentators on tellyvee.

But no, ITV exists and brings with it Tyldesley and his awful, awful, awful twat-speak. That nasal whine. The constant references to anything Man Utd have ever done and his seeming inability to stop supporting both them and Liverpool. The fact that he once said “dare he?” in reference to Thierry Henry running with the ball back in his Arsenal days. The man isn’t even a stain on society, because at least you could get rid of that with some industrial-strength chemicals and a bit of effort. This scrotal wound, it would seem, cannot be eradicated. We are all poorer as a race for his continuing existence. Though this lightens my day, every day.

He’s the worst though, at least. The others are shit bastards, but none can even come close to Tyldesley. Not even professional Tyldesley impersonator Peter Drury, who sounds like an autistic with a speech impediment trying (and failing) to do an impression of Clive the Shit. I mean, there’s Mark Lawrenson over on BBC who did remark that Alan Smith’s leg had been broken in the FA Cup semi final a few years ago “by the power of the shot”. Yes Mark. Of course that was it. We all know John Arne Riise could kick a ball really hard. That was his only talent, god rest his soul*. But he couldn’t kick it hard enough to break your leg. I’m not sure, but I would guess it’s near-impossible to do that without using some form of machinery. Or bursting the ball. You utter, utter fool.

Pleat? Fuck me. Pleat. Written down, this man comes across as reasonably intelligent. Knowledgable, even. But he should not be allowed to speak on anything that broadcasts his voice to the nation as a whole. Any man who forgets a player’s name (Petter Rudi) then, when being reminded of it, goes on to say “PetterRudiRudiPetter” on real-life television should not be allowed to be on real-life television. That’s not forgetting the time he claimed to be responsible for a Spurs goal, as he had signed both the players involved in it (Paul Robinson and Jermain Defoe). Or his frankly incomprehensible outburst about Tomas Rosicky. Or the fact he’s a kerb-crawler. I know he’s not even on ITV anymore, but it still hurts that he ever was.

Anyway, this could go on for another year or so, such is my hatred for so many football pundits. I could do a better job, and I’m shit on camera. Sack everyone and start again. Don’t just hire people because they used to be players. That can go wrong. Consider yourselves told.

*He’s not dead, he’s just shit.


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My predictions for today’s train journey

By the time you read this, I will be dead. Well, not “dead” per se – more “on a train”. This is a part of the ritual I and my girlfriend, who shall remain nameless throughout, take part in quite often. She doesn’t remain nameless to protect her identity, it’s just so I can hilariously refer to her by comical pseudonyms throughout this non-stop folly which I have been crafting for a couple of weeks now. It’s a hard life…

Anyway, I would like to make a few predictions covering what I think will happen on my train journey as I travel up the country to meet Melvyn Bragg’s Soggy Wart, as I lovingly call her.

1. Some idiotic knobends from the Army will get on around Brockenhurst, or somewhere like that, and spend at least until Birmingham talking loudly to each other, drinking four cans of Stella between ten of them and talking about which girl they managed to get pregnant last time they were ‘on leave’. Don’t get me wrong, I have a fair few mates in the forces, and while I respect the job they do (while not really supporting what/why/where they do it, bar the obvious humanitarian work and blah blah I don’t have to justify myself to you), I cannot abide by morons.

2. I’m not going to tell said morons anything I’ve written here, nor am I going to complain to them or politely ask them to keep it down. I value my life more than I value not being irritated for a couple of hours.

3. There will be a girl sat either directly behind or in front of me and she will be crying. Sobbing her eyes out. Really taking the train to tear town.

4. I will not care about said girl to my front/rear.

5. Some idiot sat nearby will stare at my home-made sandwiches with a confused look on their face. It won’t be disgust, pity or sadness – nor will they be coveting my poorly-made near-meat and cheap-cheese surprise. No, they will just look at it as if I had just pulled a hammock full of pre-filleted haddock from a sling. Confusion tinged with delight, really.

6. I will get PSP Claw, leaving my hands in a small amount of pain for an hour or so post-journey.

7. I will never want to make the journey up the country again.

8. I will remember about Captain Cous-cous and her veritable jamboree of a personality and realise I do actually want to make the journey up the country again.

9. I will remember I have to get back down the country before I can come up it again, thus reminding myself it’s a two-way trip and wondering why the fucking hell Bournemouth appears to be the most remote place in the country.

10. I will vow to abandon all pretence of environmental consciousness (first step: stop reading the Grauniad, second step: burn tyres) by deciding I will now fly from Southampton to Manchester and back.

11. I will realise this costs too much and is a bit of a ball-ache, so will instead get back to playing on the PSP/DS.

12. I will pity the fools without PSPs/DSs’s’ss.

13. I will think of Mr T.

Then, once arrived, I will have to deal with Manchester. That’s a whole other post in itself. Probably a better one. That’s actually funny. And has more casual fucking swearing. Nevertheless, I will arrive and demand tea from Ego Destructis, and she will refuse and I’ll have to make it.

It’s a hard life.


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