Heads Up! When we are talking about our “bests” of 2015, we are talking more specifically about those games, movies, and books we played, watched, and read this year. They are not all from 2015.
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Chappie (2015): From the writer/director who brought you District 9 back in 2009, Chappie follows a police droid who is stolen and reprogrammed to become the first free-thinking robot capable of emotion. While I have not yet seen this film and it has garnered mixed reviews, Jango seemed to like it quite a lot and so I would say that it is definitely worth a watch.
Ex Machina (2015): From the writer of 28 Days Later and Sunshine, Ex Machina follows the story of a young programmer who is chosen to evaluate the human qualities of a female A.I. so as to determine whether or not it is truly capable of emotion or free thought. This is a great and very intense film. Give it a watch.
The Hateful Eight (2015): Quentin Tarantino works his unique and brutal brand of movie magic once again in this his eighth film to date which tells the story of a famous bounty hunter and his prisoner as they find themselves taking shelter in a cabin housing a group of wicked characters. If you can see it in 70mm, I would highly recommend this film. Be warned, however, this film is long and the second half is quite a departure from the first in tone.
Fahrenheit 451 (1953): A dystopian novel by Ray Bradbury in which books are outlawed and a group known as the “firemen” burn any that they come across. It is a wonderful study of the necessity of free speech and the power that books hold within their pages. I have no idea how Dave has not read this book yet since it is oftentimes assigned as required reading in high school.
Redwall (1986): I know a lot of folks who have read this and really enjoyed it, but have never actually read it myself. Redwall is a fantasy novel/series about an abbey inhabited by anthropomorphic mice as they fight against a one-eyed, evil rat overlord who is trying to take over Redwall.
You Are Not So Smart (2011): A book by journalist David McRaney which teaches you all about how your brain is fooling you into thinking you are smarter than you really are. Yet another book that I have not yet read, but I think I will definitely pick it up since it is always a blast to learn about how my brain is working against me so as to work with me.
Dan Simmons Novels: Dan Simmons is a science-fiction and horror writer whose novels I have never stopped enjoying. My personal favorites are his horror novels, especially Summer of Night, The Terror, and The Abominable.
This War of Mine (2014): An independent game by 11 Bit Studios that allows players to experience the horrors of war from the perspective of those civilians caught up in the middle of a war zone. From what Dave has explained, this is a very challenging game emotionally and mechanically.
Danganronpa Another Episode (2015): I honestly do not know how to describe this game very well. It is an action-adventure survival horror game which takes place between Danganronpa and Danganronpa 2 where you play as the younger sister of the first game’s protagonist as she fights through hordes of deadly robot bears and possibly other teenagers… I honestly do not know. Jango and a lot of other folks I know seem to like these games a lot, however, so they probably are worth trying to figure out.
Bloodborne (2015): My personal favorite game of the year, Bloodborne is another title by the folks at From Software who brought you Demon’s Souls and Dark Souls. Taking place in a dark, gothic, Victorian setting with heavy influences from HP Lovecraft, the challenging gameplay and unsettling story make for an interesting blend in which defeating a boss or overcoming a challenge leaves you in a euphoric state.
Mortal Online (2010): A first person, fantasy, MMORPG in which you can choose to play the game in any manner of ways. The community and mechanics for this game, however, seems to be rather unforgiving and will punish other players for making even the smallest of mistakes. Power and experience is a true threat in this world and some players will exploit that for their benefit. Other than that, however, the game actually sounds kind of fun.
Hyperdimension Neptunia (2010): A JRPG in which you play as Neptune, one of the four goddesses of “Game Industry” who is taking part in a long series of conflicts known as the “Console War.” This game seems to be extremely and blatantly referential to the gaming industry, thus making it a fairly fun game/story for game developers and those who know the history of gaming. On the other hand, however, it sounds absolutely ridiculous.
Until Dawn (2015): We have already talked about this game in Episode 1 of the podcast, but Jango seems to be of the opinion that it is not an amazing game. We shall have to see what Debbie has to say about that the next time she is on (probably next month).
Disposition System: We went over this in a little more detail during last week’s update, but the basic overview is that INT uses a system to signal a non-player-character’s personal disposition towards the player based upon in-game stimuli within a scene. This is that system that determines how well-liked the player is by another character.
|| Intro/Outro Music ||
Rhinoceros – Kevin MacLeod (www.incompetech.com)
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