Rarer than Mountain Dew – Humanity in DayZ

This is a tale of heroic sacrifice.
It’s my favorite moment so far in DayZ and quite possibly my greatest videogame moment I’ve ever experienced.

After skirting around the edge of a large city (Cherno maybe) at night for some time, I decide to grow a pair and explore it. My weapon is the Lee Enfield bolt action rifle but firing it would alert every zombie in close proximity to my location. It’s pitch black dark and the moon is the only light source. I spot a fire station, a so called PVP hot spot, and watch it for what seems like a very long 5 minutes. I decide not to enter it having suffered a few too many times in fire stations just like it.

After a few more moments scurrying around I see the City Hall building and climb it. A revolver and a can of Coke (which I desperately needed) are my rewards.

Viewing the city from atop the Hall is quite a site. I look for any other loot spawn areas. The only other enter-able building close by is the Fire Station.

After descending the Hall I again watch the Fire Station for another few minutes then make a break for it. A few zombies follow me but I lose them inside. Slowly walking up the stairs I hear the buzzing of flies, an indication of a dead player nearby. I see the body then BOOM!

A bullet hits me out of nowhere and I’m down to 5000 blood (you start with 12000). After bandaging I have just over 4000 blood, the screen is a mess of black and white blurs and I’m shaking. Painkillers get rid of the shakes then I lay prone. Revolver facing the staircase. Waiting for the shooter to appear…Nothing.

I creep my way back down the stairs and lay prone again, Revolver out facing the back door of the fire station. There’s a voice on the chat, ‘Any friendlies in fire station?’. My voice chat doesn’t work so I can’t answer. Someone enters the door I’m facing!

‘Friendly dude! Friendly!’ he says. The screen is a blurry mess but I see he’s only carrying a flashlight. He says he’s unarmed and I believe him. Using the direct communication text chat I ask if he ‘has blood?’. He says no but he could get some. I quickly warn him of the sniper that shot me. ‘He’s watching the top floor’ I tell him.

Still using the voice chat, the flashlight player asks where the bullet would have came from. I make my final decision at this point. With only 4000 blood I tell him, ‘I have Revolver and Lee Enfield. I’m going to drop them on the ground for you. I’m fucked!’.

On voice chat I hear a confused,
‘What are you doing?’.
To which I dramatically type back,
‘You take them! I’m going out there!!’

I drop all my weapons for him, stand up and walk out of the fire station. The last words I hear are, ‘Mate, there’s a lot of bad players in this game but you’re not one of them’…

And I get finished off from a shot by presumably the same shooter that got me earlier.

I don’t know if my guns helped the other player at all. Whether he took them and fled or tried to avenge me. I’ll never know.

That story just took me about 45 minutes to write out. It’s 12.35 am and as poorly written as it probably is I just needed to get that story out there while it was fresh in my head.

Current Comic Obsession : Fatale

Image via Image Comics

I have my husband to thank for getting me interested in comics, but I have the formidable team of Ed Brubaker  and Sean Phillips to thank for well and truly cementing that interest and steering it in the direction of obsession.

While browsing an online comic store I was drawn to the amazing cover art and after reading a short synopsis I decided to purchase the first issue. I mean 1950s setting, mysterious woman, mobsters, immortal demon-monster, a blend of noir and horror – what’s not to love?

I had never read any Brubaker but had heard Joe speak highly of his work on Winter Soldier and had read some great things about the team of Brubaker/Phillips, so I was very much looking forward to Fatale.

It did not disappoint.

Stunning art and an intriguing (and well-written)story combine  to make a series which is without a doubt the best thing I have read in the way of comics so far.

With some other series I have read, I have felt that either too much was jam-packed into each part, making it easy to become confused by the overload, or so slow that I would get to the end feeling that nothing happened. In contrast fatale is perfectly paced, the story unravelling exactly as it should without leaving the reader bewildered by information overload or bored by lack of momentum.

I am now reading number six which is the beginning of a new arc, this one set  in the 1970s. One episode in and I’m already hooked.

I know I am probably a bit late to the party in that the Brubaker/Phillips team reputation for awesomeness is already well established due to their Sleeper, Criminal and Incognito series, but if by chance you are not familiar with this dynamic duo I strongly recommend you check out Fatale pronto. Because seriously, I cannot fault it.

Joel Awesome’s Top 5 New 52 Comics

As a Marvel man it’s kinda hard to admit it but DC’s New 52 has taken over my comic life in a big way! I’m enjoying the new takes on origin stories, catching up with heroes I’ve not read about since I was a kid and reading some terrific writing from DC writing team.

Here’s my Top 5 New 52 series:

5. Batman Inc

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This comic is pure entertainment! The banter between Bruce and Damian is pretty hilarious but there’s some heart here too! Also, Damian is also an unhinged little bastard!

The scene below has a narration by the ‘Goat Boy’ assassin in which he says, ‘The Boy moved like only computer graphics could explain!’. Reminded me of the combat in Arkham Asylum/City.

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4. Earth 2

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DC’s alternate universe intrigues me. New takes on original heroes (The Flash & Green Lantern) and great artwork is selling this to me.

Opening panels feature a huge battle scene to set the tone!

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3. Batwoman

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DC’s female heroes are a breath of fresh air for me. None of Marvels ladies capture my attention like the ones running around Gotham. J H Williams’s Batwoman was the first of the DC ladies that caught my eye. Her character design is awesome (love the Red on Black), she’s got a huge heart inside her rough exterior and she prefers the company of woman. Sold!
I will add that this is a series that Lan is reading. Not one of my own.

Here is an example of J H Williams amazing panel art and structure.

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2. Wonder Woman

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This was the first (and originally only) one of the New 52 I was going to follow. I’d never been into Wonder Woman in the past and the reboot was the best time to start. I’m glad I chose the Amazon as it is a great example of how to write female superheros. Brian Azzarello gives her incredible strength and focus in the early issues then as the story progresses, she’s not quite sure who she is or what she fights for. Really impressive stuff!

Centaur attacking?! Wonder Woman don’t care…BOOM!

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1. Batgirl

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Barbara Gordon’s role in the DC Universe and continuity took the biggest hit in the New 53 with her gaining back the use of legs. Her wheelchair’s been replaced with a Batcycle but is she ready to get back into Gothams underbelly? Gail Simone gets into Babs head and shows us that she’s still vulnerable. Should she be Batgirl again? Can she let it go?
I can’t get enough of her and her journey of self discovery.

Batgirl’s legs aren’t only made for walking!

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Honorable mentions to Detective Comics, Justice League and Action Comics.

Pile of Shame

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Here’s my current crop of unfinished games. Looking at them now I’m quite surprised I’ve not completed them yet.
This post is just my experiences with these games and why I didn’t/haven’t completed them. Not slagging them off…

Mass Effect 2 had a great story and the whole team building aspect was awesome. ME3 however felt stale and the controls and polish seemed dated and just not as fresh as ME2.

The thing that turned me off LA Noire and Deus Ex were the controls. Absolutely loved the stories of both game but the mechanics were sub-par. Sure Rockstar have perfected the open world but the shooting mechanics were terrible. Deus Ex’s world also failed to grab me. It was just too boring for the futuristic story and setting.

The biggest surprise in that pile is The Witcher 2. This game has a huge fantasy world to explore, a mature storyline and deep characters but it’s fighting mechanics were too ‘PC’ and maybe just too hard for me.

I’ll probably revisit these games soon. Dragons Dogma has been an ‘on again off again’ thing and the games I mentioned above are all AAA titles and deserve a proper playthrough.

I will mention though that I was HEAVILY into Dark Souls when a lot of these games dropped. A few people I know of have said that ‘Dark Souls has killed off all other RPG’s. Maybe even all other games for me…

Joel Awesome Reviews – Blade Runner

Joel Awesome Reviews – Blade Runner

SPOILERS…from a 30 year old film.
I’ve described my Blade Runner journey as such; ‘Never liked it’ to ‘Giving it another chance’ to finally ‘One of the best Sci-Fi films I’ve seen!’
This film just eluded me up until last week. I don’t know what made me want to revisit it but I’m glad I did.
Harrison Ford plays the P.I role well but the supporting characters are the real key here. Rutger Hauer was incredible and stole the film for me. In the scene where he meets his creator, Tyrell, you could see and feel the conlicted emotions in his child like Replicant mind. I’ve likened Rutger Hauers ‘Roy Batty’ performance to Heath Ledgers ‘Joker’. Equally impressive is Edward James Olmos as the shady cop Gaff whose brief appearances are filled with subtle hints and great character acting.
The version I watched was the 2007 – Final Cut of the film which Ridley Scott had total control over. In it he expands the notion that Harrison Ford’s Deckard is a replicant. Some say this destroys the humanity theme of the film. I like the idea of a human Deckard remembering what it means to be human after his fight with Batty. Scott however wants Deckard as a replicant and the film is cut as such. I’ll try and track down the MANY other versions of the film and compare and critique the differences.

An 80’s Masterpiece and my No. 2 all time favorite sci-fi film.

9 out of  10 Xenomorph Eggs!