Wednesday, January 31, 2001

Age of Empires


Game scale (1-5) 1 being totally sucky and 5 being Il Magnifico

I load game and skillfully leave the documentation in the box since I know how to rule the world and don't need any rule book to tell me how to do it better. I quickly grasp the concept of fornicate more pesants to do all the grunt work. I make all the mistakes a would-be ruler makes. However I learn form them. Soon the turd slurper CG-enemy comes-a-knockin on my town's door. A cute little regiment of briton infantry from the evil Aethelfrith. I spent about a nano-second trying to be freinds with this scumbag only to have him rebuke me. Since my town is amply protected by multiple gard towers most of the enemy is dead before they get to my town center. The morons that do find their way there are horrified to see a castle defended by a dozen or so longbowmen. I guess the CG Aethelfrith considers them the lost regiment since none of them return alive.

Meanwhile, not very far away, I have my army corps of engineers. This is an army of nine peasents surounded by heavy cavelry, crossbowmen, and pikemen. This corp specializes in shock construction. Since I am trading with two other CG idots, one of whom is stupid enough to be freinds with me, I am roling in gold. I cant spend the stuff fast enough. Stone is trading at the 4 to 5 gp's per stone and I don't really care. I buy it by the 100 stone. My engineers mercilessly begin to encircle CG Aethelfrith's town with a dozen towers and a castle or two. He freaks and launches ilconsidered attacks against all the fortifications but it is no use. He's doomed. I send in me occupation force in and slaughter all the peasents and monks, blast down the churches and the pathetic CG Aethelfrith gives up. The Black Prince sends in some monks to pick up relics that are now up for grabs.

The Black Prince is my bro. He's been my freind and we have made a happy alliance for a long time now. So what do I do? Change my status with him to enemy and kill his monks and take the relics for myself. Then I go back to being freinds with him. His kingdom is richer than mine but it is harmelss so I don't worry about him. After thrashing one CG enemy I take my ACE south into more enemy territory. I build a couple castles on two opposed escarpments and then wall off the region. The little green pukes down there are like locusts chopping down trees. I decide to make them the new enemy of the moment and send an army in to hurt them.
There is a big battle around their town cetner, wich is destroyed, but I have to withdraw to the saftey of my to forward castles. By the time my army has regrouped I have created more troops to repalce the dead. I then run into the population limit. I need a bigger army so I go to my own town and kill peasants. I then build seige engines and send them south to serve as artillary support for my invasion army.

Meanwhile the green fuckers are attacking me and I loose a castle. So what! I build another one. I discover, to my fiscal horror, that two of my trade carts are missing. That little green fucker killed'm. I build three more after killing another lumberjack peasent, and send them to the green turd to trade. My town is practically a ghost town. About half the peasents are with my invasion army as engineers.

The artillary has arrived at my marcher castles and I imediately launch my strengthened army in two divisions at the green gothic enemy. I order all units to stand ground. I find this to be the best offensive order of all. It forces the dickwad computer into attacking you and, like the civil war battles of old, the battle hardware favors the defender. Each division splits into two wings and creartes a kill zone about the size of the enem town. My two huge divisions keep good order. Gothic attackers are killed by the knights and swordsmen while the longbowmen sweep the town of villagers. The artillary blasts down another town center and then a barraks and a stable. The computer, being the stupid bastard that it is, cannot get it into its head that might makes right. All it would have to do is mass it's own forces and drive north around my army and it would force me to abandon the attack so I could save my own city. Or it could, as general James Longstreet used to say, hit me "on the end" and break my fomration apart.

What does the might dual PIII 750 do? It sends irregulars to slap at me as if to say, "icky human go away and stop hurting me." I am grossly disappointed in the lack luster tactics of this green foe. I break off the attack and retreat to give the PIII time to regroup and come at me. I want a more interesting battle. Nope. I finally give up and move my army back in.

When I deam the moment right I order all the knights and infantry to be as agressive as possible and they sweep though the area killing things. I
order the artillary to cease fire so as not to hammer my own troops into the dirt. I box them up in longbowmen and move one division back to the
marcher castles. Then I move the other east, and in a moment or two the green dude gives up.

Now it is noly the dufus Black Prince. My bro, compadre, commrade in arms (thats a joke I asked for his help once and he didn't do squat.) So what do I do with him? I send in the ACE with seige engines and blast open a big space in the center of his domain. I build a big fortress with two castles and I garrison half my invasion army inside it. I Shut the gate and leave it alone. I turn the diplomatic status to enemy for a moment or two and let the garrison and casltes, spew arrows all over the place killing the princes peaseants and soldiers. Then I go back to being freinds with him. He starts to build more soldiers and every once in a while I go in and teach him who's emperor.

So do I like this game? Hell yes I like it. However I would change it to make it better in a couple very important ways.
  1. To make this game live up to its name I would allow for a CG enemy state to be terrorized into surrender but still have it's own troops. If your own domain loses to many troops then this enemy ceases being under your thumb and revolts.
  2. As your territory increases you should automatically be given the opportunity to appoint NPC governors to regions. These governors would do your bidding. You give them an order such as: Defend region from any incursion. They then use the regions resources to do jsut that. Or you could say: Attack neighboring region. The governor will do it. However if the empire becomes too weak they me split off and become enemy states that you have to reconquer.

Thursday, January 11, 2001


This film should have been the crowning turd in the waterpipe but it was not. I liked it. It was an idea that has been done to death but was done so well that I just came out feeling good. When he woke up in the messy bed and the kids were screeming and running through the house that was great. That was real. I thought "man would I want to stay in that world?" Then I remembered that I do live in that world. The guy chose it over the millionaire lifestyle. I guess I like the movie because of just that action.

Big Kahuna


You know this film had great acting and terrific dialogue but salesguys jsut don't get all cerebral when they are out in the field. Sorry that is bullshit. They don't postulate on the existance of God or their own lives meaning. All they do is sleep, sell stuff, eat food, go to bars, shit and go bakc to sleep. Taking this film on face value you'd think that sales guys are fucking monks in polyester, their eye's trained heavenword. Not so. This film was a pet project by one of my favorite actors Mr Spacey. Remember I think Spacey should be a Jedi. He'd kick ass.


You know this film is so sucky that I wish I could cast it away. What a waste of film, story, actor, etc... It didn't show me anything I have seen before. My idea for a castaway story is that the guy ends up on the island and all he has is one fedex package. he opens it and finds college text books for a physics professor. After burning a couple he decides that he might as well read them since he might go nuts. So after 4 years he has read and re read them. They range from Max Born's book on Einstien's Theory of Relativity and textbooks on quantem mechanics to cosmology. In the package there is a treatise, written by a cambridge mathamatician. It is an attempt at a Grand Unified Theory, a theory linking quantem mechanics with general relativity; a theory of everything. It is unfinished. After four years of solitude the castaway is now, not only an expert spear fisherman but a phycisist. Without the external nonsense of the modern world his brain has adapted into a hunter gatherer / physicist of the highesrt order. Then he stubs his toe on a rock. This seeming trivial injury is fatal in his current surroundings. He knows it. So he does what he can to write down on his cave wall the equations necassary to describe the workings of the cosmos. As he finishes the camera tracks back out accross the ocean and out into space and you are left with the irony that the secret to the future of the universe is housed in a cave on a southpacific island.

Gone in 60 Seconds


Dull dull dull or god it was dull. I kepts waiting for the KR500 and you had to wait all the way to the end and then they CGI'd it over a bridge. Sucks.

The Perfect Storm


As soon as I finished the book I knew this was going to be a film and I knew it would suck. The Book is written in a very journalistic way and reads more like a magazine article than a novel. It is a great book. Junger goes into ocean mechanics, history, and fishery detail that is totally lost in the movie. For instance his anecdotal info is riveting as well. Take the time a rogue wave blasted out the bridge windows of the Queen Mary, that's 90 feet above the water line, and she came within a degree or two of capsizing. Or the time, in the 1850's when a fishing boat came across a note in a bottle with the last words of a crew that hadn't been heard from in a year. One of the more interesting twists in the book is Junger's description of how the people left behind have to willfully extract the men from their lives. It is just a mater of faith that the men are dead since no boat, or bodies were ever recovered. The film also plays fast and loose with the facts. First of all there was no distress signal sent from the Andrea Gail. The rescue helicopter that picked up the crew from the yacht was not enroute to the AG but to a japanese fisherman when it went down.

But despite all that the film just wasn't interesting. The characters were dehumanized. The filmmaker had a clean slate for dialogue since none of the men survived. Yet all he could do was bullshit lines that weren't memorable at all. There could have been much made of the fact that, aside from Tyne, all the other men didn't much like fishing. It was a dead end job that they wanted to get clear of as soon as they could. Bob Brown's character was accurate but his animosity toward Tyne is not. Most sword boats are only in port for afew days at a time anyway.