Sunday, 27 May 2012

About Me - Part Five: Videogames

It all started with Prince of Persia.
It was pretty much our first computer at home and there it was – a game so ahead of its time and a game that still holds up today. I was obsessed with all the running, jumping and sword-fighting of that strangely blonde-haired Prince.
From there I got a ZX Spectrum – my first game being Strider and the last – before moving onto the Megadrive – was Golden Axe. This is a game synonymous with the Sega Megadrive, but I will always remember it fondly on the Spectrum. It was a machine on the way out, yet here was Golden Axe in full colour with gameplay every bit as good as on the new consoles.
The Sega Megadrive introduced me to the Madden and NHL series, and I’m still paying for that all these years later. I also became obsessed with Road Rash II and I still believe there is no multiplayer game out there to match Micro Machines 96.
My PC gaming continued during this time with the likes of Civilization, Sim City, Theme Park and of course, Wolfenstein and Doom.

Onto the PlayStation I went, ploughing hours and hours into Smackdown 2 and discovering Grand Theft Auto in the process.
While everyone moved onto the PS2, I got my taste of more advanced games thanks to a new PC. Ghost Recon, Rainbow Six and Splinter Cell were the main players.
I eventually bought a PS2 myself, savouring the delights of NHL and Madden 2004, Call of Duty, Metal Gear and my favourite – Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory.

And now here were are, up to date with the Xbox 360 in the very best generation of gaming yet. I’ve no idea what the future holds on the gaming front, but – providing real life doesn’t get in the way – I’m sure it’ll be awesome.

Saturday, 19 May 2012

About Me - Part Four: Comics

I started out, as many did, with Dandy. You know, Desperate Dan and all that. I wasn’t a fan of the Beano. I even dabbled with Roy of the Rovers before I realised football was rubbish.

But then, I was in my local papershop in August 1993 - probably buying some wrestling stickers – when something caught my eye on the shelf. This was staring back at me…..

BLAMMO! And the world changed.

What was this? Who was this character? Could this look any more awesome?
I had to have it. I coughed up 60p of my spending money there and then and was treated to a revelation. 2000AD - Judge Dredd, Big Dave, Slaughterbowl, Maniac 5. It was grown up, it was dark and edgy. And it was magnificent.

I got several more issues before it tailed off, but I picked it up again a few years later. And then again later still. I eventually stopped altogether because it was getting too expensive for a weekly, but it all stayed with me.

Apart from through films and TV, my real intro to superhero comics was a random purchase of Trinity 1 at Meadowhall's The Last Picture Show.

And I never looked back. Superheroes, especially Superman and Batman, would be a permanent fixture in my life from then on. And I have Judge Dredd and that 60p comic in 1993 to thank for it.


Thursday, 17 May 2012

Alien Neet

On the eve of the release of Modern Warfare 3 last November, two of my mates and I played Call of Duty 4, Modern Warfare 2 and Black Ops back to back in a 2 hour session.
Apart from it being a great way to spend an evening, an interesting perspective came out of it all. When a new game is released in the series, it takes on the role of the “best one”. The go-to game in your collection.
But never before had we played them back to back like that, and in doing so we saw more closely how the games had evolved. We saw what worked and what didn’t.
It’s quite possible that this experience will be repeated this Sunday, just in a different medium.
On Sunday, myself (@Dodd81), Jack (@ASTR0_ZOMBIe) and Mark (@MarkoVanDamms) will be holding……..Alien Neet.
From about 1pm, we will be watching all four Alien films back to back.
I’ve no idea how I’ll feel about the individual films when we come out the other side, so I’ll document what they are to me now and we’ll see how things change.
Alien – the horror masterpiece. You never get over seeing it. Truly a piece of cinema art.
Aliens – the sci-fi shoot-em up. In my mind, one of the greatest action movies ever.
Alien 3 – a dark, gritty film from an exceptional talent in David Fincher. An underated addition to the series.
Alien Resurrection – back to sci-fi and a completely different Ripley – only a couple of scenes hinting at the woman she once was. A decent film judged on its own merits, but Alien Neet will decide if it really fits comfortably into the franchise. The Newborn human-alien hybrid though? Absolute turd.
#alienneet – Sunday 20th May – Follow us on Twitter for updates.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

CSI Miami cancelled

If you live in Britain and have normal tv, then you already know how risky it can be starting to watch a new show.
Many have enthusiastically watched the first couple of series of something, only for it to be taken off them by the corporate whores of Sky television.
24, Heroes, Lost, House. I wouldn’t get too attached to Homeland. The vultures will be circling.
If it’s an American show you’re into – and let’s face it, that’s where the magic happens – then you’re in extra danger of crushing disappointment. The American TV networks are ruthless in cancelling shows.
If there’s even a slight drop in viewing figures in the US – regardless of how it’s doing in the rest of the world – gone.
K-Ville – one season. Gone.
Flash Forward – one season. Cancelled.
The suits at the top care little for ongoing story threads left hanging. If it isn’t making the big money, it’s out the door.
And the latest to go, I’m sorry to say, is CSI: Miami.
Consistently one of the most viewed shows IN THE WORLD, Miami was the first spin off of the Las Vegas set CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and followed the work of the Miami-Dade forensic crime lab led by the brilliant Horatio Caine.
CSI: Miami is more over-the-top and tongue in cheek than the original series and CSI: New York and that’s why I love it. It doesn’t take itself too seriously, but everyone plays it dead straight. And what a character in Horatio Caine! Just check out these one-liners:

Love this guy. But sadly, all good things must come to an end. The tenth season of CSI: Miami will be the last and I for one will miss the sun, sea, sand, bloody murder and the Shades of Justice.
Thanks, H.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

About Me - Part Three: Books

I did English Literature at A-Level and University.

This has absolutely no impact on what books I read. I generally don't like all the books perceived to be "classics". Though I do like Shakespeare. Can't stand Jane Austen. It's a wonder I made it through the course to be honest.

I read what entertains me. My favourite authors are Dean Koontz, John Grisham and Chuck Palahniuk.

And I'm slowly working my way through the Black Library's Horus Heresy series.

Big fan of Roald Dahl when I was growing up and the Narnia series too. And who could forget Roger Red Hat?

I'm sure I'll have a few blog posts in the future recommending my favourite reads, so watch out for that.

Monday, 14 May 2012

About Me - Part Two: TV

I don't watch much TV. I'm typing this with Coronation Street on in the background though. I refuse to believe Rosie Webster has left.

I watch the 3 CSIs and Archer and I'm currently fighting a losing battle to keep up with Touch. But other than that, all my TV viewing is on DVD.

I'm working my way through The Wire and Deadwood and I have all the boxsets of the greatest tv show ever made.....24.

But I don't watch much TV. Where's Rosie?!!

Sunday, 13 May 2012

About Me - Part One: Films

The two mates I hang around with most are Nick (who you can follow on Twitter here.) and Rich. Whenever we are at a pub quiz, Nick's specialist subjects would be music and TV. Rich has no specialist subject - he just knows everything. He's like our Yoda. 

My subject is films. I'm not saying I'm a film-buff or anything, but I have retained a lot of useless information from the films I've seen. 

I could go on all day with my list of top films in various categories, but my favourite film is Casablanca. I decided that only a few months ago after years of being unable to answer the question. 

I like all kinds of films - action, horror, animated, foreign, whatever. I also appreciate that movies are made to entertain, so you won't catch me piling the hate onto the likes of Transformers like everyone else, because for me - it does what it's supposed to - entertain me with massive robots scrapping.

Saturday, 12 May 2012


So.....First blog post then. A bit about me first to kick off with I suppose: I'm Jamie. A thirty year old man-child. My main interests (what this blog will be about) are films, comics, books, videogames and Warhammer. The cornerstones of geekdom, if you will.

I have a fiancee, Samantha. Obviously this blog will not be going down the private life route, but now you know who she is in case I mention her on here. She's also a Burlesque performer for Secrets of the Boudoir Burlesque and co-runs a Burlesque class. I may do a blog on this in the future to help spread the word.

Over the next few days/weeks, I'll be posting more About Me stuff, breaking it down into those interests of mine. So watch out for those.

Let's have a look around the blog. Obviously - having just started out - this is all a work-in-progress and is likely to change and swap around etc.

But across the top you have various tabs:

JD's Gaming Blog - Here you'll find a link to the latest episode of my gaming blog - powered by Avatar Kinect. I don't claim to be an expert in gaming, I just like to play games and I occasionally video blog about them. You'll also find a link on there to my YouTube channel where you can watch all the previous episodes.

Happening this Week - In here will be a round-up of things happening, er...., this week.You know, stuff I have planned, games I'll playing, things like that.

Geek's Corner - Here you'll find photographs of some of my Games Workshop models.Enjoy and feel free to comment.

Recommendations - In here I plan to post stuff like links to other people's blogs, YouTube videos I think will interest you, and so on.

So, stay tuned for more. I hope you enjoy my attempt at a blog.