Fifth Day of Listmas: Favorite Podcasts of 2013
Dec24

Fifth Day of Listmas: Favorite Podcasts of 2013

Murf vs. Internet has organized a “Blogger Listmas“, where folks write lists every day during this, the listiest time of the year. You can see more at his site, or look for the #Listmas tag on Twitter.

PS: No “best games of 2013″ list — you’ll have to listen to Cat Context and Game On over the next couple of weeks for that. ;)

—————————————

Back in August I talked about some of the general MMO podcasts out there, but that was just dipping my toe into the huge number of podcasts available, on games or otherwise.

I listen to podcasts a lot. A lot, a lot. (I find headphones are marvelous for being out and about on days when the ol’ social anxiety is flaring up.) Below are four shows that make me genuinely excited when I see an update.

PS: Recommendations of shows I might enjoy are greatly appreciated!

The Bugle – “Audio newspaper for a video world”

John Oliver and Andy Zalt 007 Fifth Day of Listmas: Favorite Podcasts of 2013
If you haven’t discovered it yet, The Bugle consists of former Daily Show funny guy John Oliver and his fellow comedian pal Andy Zaltzman talking about news and politics from around the world. John is a master of high outrage, and Andy is so (purposefully?) unfunny that it actually loops around again into being hilarious. While the US and UK are certainly not ignored, one of the great things about The Bugle is that it talks about news from countries we don’t usually hear about in North America. Yes, it’s satirical, but funny and smart at the same time.

Also, it was The Bugle that coined the term “Fuck-eulogy” (say it out loud), which is just sheer brilliance.

The FPlus – “Terrible things, read with enthusiasm”

If you haven’t noticed yet, the internet is full of terrible and useless content, from forum rants by guys who hate “3D” women to WikiHow articles on “how to wear casual clothes on the weekend”. (Yes, that last one actually exists.) Oh sure, you could ignore all that stuff, or get angry about it, but isn’t laughing so much better? The FPlus has a team of “ridiculists”, some professional voice actors and some just fans of the terrible, who read these nuggets and have a great time doing it. Pretty much every episode of The FPlus makes me laugh out loud at least once.

Welcome to Night Vale

I think Night Vale became a genuine phenomenon this year, so you’ve probably already heard about it. Welcome to Night Vale is a community radio show for the small desert town of Night Vale where strange and terrible things happen. Sometimes it reports news like the Glow Cloud that rains dead animals running for the PTA, other times it has warnings to stay inside and close your eyes because the street cleaners are coming. Welcome to Night Vale ably balances the macabre and the oddly sweet, and the show as a whole feels like a rebirth of the radio plays of yore. And now… the weather.

How to Murder Time – “Podcasting about games and things”

Mad props to j3w3l at Healing the Masses for suggesting this show earlier in the year. How to Murder Time features friends Jon and Tim talking about video games, whether it’s simply what they’re playing or more topical episodes like taking on games reviews or console comparisons. (MMOs are often discussed, too.) The show has that trademark dry British humor that I enjoy, but is also quite smart and always informative.

Fourth Day of Listmas: Catchiest Songs I Heard in 2013
Dec23

Fourth Day of Listmas: Catchiest Songs I Heard in 2013

Murf vs. Internet has organized a “Blogger Listmas“, where folks write lists every day during this, the listiest time of the year. You can see more at his site, or look for the #Listmas tag on Twitter.

PS: No “best games of 2013″ list — you’ll have to listen to Cat Context and Game On over the next couple of weeks for that. ;)

—————————————

Popular music in 2013 is… something I don’t know much about. I’m old, and my musical tastes crystallized in like 1995. Also, I don’t listen to the radio. With those caveats in mind, behold my list of the catchiest songs I heard in 2013!

2012 was the year I got really into mashups, and although they weren’t such a thing with me this year they still were around my playlist in large quantities, particularly on Plug.dj Fridays. (Turntable.fm, RIP.) Behold, a mashup of Surfin’ Bird and Bangarang!

It wouldn’t make much sense to mention mashups without tipping my hat to remixes. This is Heartbeat by Childish Gambino Fourth Day of Listmas: Catchiest Songs I Heard in 2013 (Amazon link) with the simple addition of a dirty beat, and I listened to it for like a solid month. (I love Donald Glover because his lyrics are so fucking smart, but I also kind of hate him as a writer because his lyrics are so fucking smart and I’m jelly.)

Video game soundtracks also appeared in regular rotation for the first time this year, starting with the amazing Binding of Isaac album. For something more recent, though, I had Firefrost from the Electronic Super Joy Original Soundtrack Fourth Day of Listmas: Catchiest Songs I Heard in 2013 (Amazon link) in my head for weeks. It is virtually impossible to listen to this and not smile!

My understanding is that it’s currently cool to hate Macklemore Fourth Day of Listmas: Catchiest Songs I Heard in 2013 (Amazon link) (and Ryan Lewis) but I don’t care. Thrift Shop is a great song with a great message and a killer, killer hook. It’s instantly one of those classics that kids will be dancing to a decade or more from now.

Okay, so let’s talk about Korean pop. I got into all this in a huge way this year mostly accidentally. (I was just looking for weird videos for Plug.dj Fridays!) The current trend in K-Pop is multi-part harmonies in minor keys, and for whatever reason I love that sound a whole lot. Here’s a good example — this is Crayon Pop with their summer hit Bar Bar Bar Fourth Day of Listmas: Catchiest Songs I Heard in 2013 (Amazon link). It’s totally ridiculous and cutsey (which I usually hate) and yes, they are all wearing bike helmets all the time, but by the time they get to that minor key chorus I am hooked.

(By the way, Crayon Pop are kind of a divisive band for international K-pop fans, so don’t put off of the whole genre if you hate them.)

I also discovered Big Bang, and their amazing 2012 party-shaker Fantastic Baby Fourth Day of Listmas: Catchiest Songs I Heard in 2013 (Amazon link). Great video, great song. Boom shakalaka!

Here’s another weird video. Just last month a member of Big Bang, T.O.P, released his latest solo single. T.O.P has clearly been watching 2001: A Space Odyssey lately! This track has an unusual sound and serious lyrics for K-pop, but it’s still done quite well on the charts. Also, T.O.P is a babe. *cough*

Okay, time for Liore’s catchiest song of 2013 and perhaps unsurprisingly it is by another member of Big Bang, Taeyang. The video is not as crazy, and honestly I like some of the other artists I’ve mentioned above more overall, but damn if Ringa Linga Fourth Day of Listmas: Catchiest Songs I Heard in 2013 (Amazon link) is not an earworm of epic proportions.

Third Day of Listmas: Favorite TV Shows of 2013
Dec22

Third Day of Listmas: Favorite TV Shows of 2013

Murf vs. Internet has organized a “Blogger Listmas“, where folks write lists every day during this, the listiest time of the year. You can see more at his site, or look for the #Listmas tag on Twitter.

PS: No “best games of 2013″ list — you’ll have to listen to Cat Context and Game On over the next couple of weeks for that. ;)

————————————————-

The reason this post is so late is because I’m on holiday and I drank all this wine. No wait, it’s because I discovered a new television show that I had to finish today before holiday travels! Also, I drank all this wine. *hic*

Below is a list of my favorite television shows of 2013. I think I’m like most nerds in that if I enjoy a show I’d much rather wait until it’s on Netflix and shotgun entire seasons than wait for cable television every week. For that reason most of my favorite shows I saw in 2013 are actually from before this year, and all of them are ones I lost an entire weekend to upon discovery. For once, these are actually in a particular order.

1) Life on Mars (BBC, 2006)

Life on Mars Third Day of Listmas: Favorite TV Shows of 2013 (Amazon link) is just two seasons, just 16 episodes. British detective Sam Tyler gets in a car accident in 2006 and wakes up in 1973. Has he gone crazy in 1973, or is this a dream from 2006? This show has a little bit of everything, from sweet to tense to action, and you end up liking all the characters even though most of them don’t deserve it. And without giving any spoilers, the end is the true definition of bittersweet. Watch this show, really.

Here’s the first 3 minutes of the first episode:

2) Orphan Black (BBC America, 2013)

So here’s the thing: I’m a super terrible hipster snob when it comes to fantasy television. I can’t help it — for whatever reason I just don’t enjoy most sci-fi or fantasy TV. With that in mind, I was pretty sure I wasn’t going to like Orphan Black Third Day of Listmas: Favorite TV Shows of 2013 (Amazon link) and.. I was wrong. It’s great! Through a series of coincidences Londoner Sarah realizes that she is just one of a number identical clones, and sets out to meet her doubles. This show is tightly written and full of twists, but the real draw here is Tatiana Maslany as Sarah and the rest of the clones. She just got nominated for a Golden Globe for this role, and she really deserves it.

A good Orphan Black trailer:

3) Boys Over Flowers (Group Eight (South Korea), 2009)

2013 is definitely marked as being the year I got into South Korean pop culture, including this show. (Wait until the list of my favorite songs of 2013!) Boys Over Flowers Third Day of Listmas: Favorite TV Shows of 2013 (Amazon link) is a 25-episode long romantic drama about Jan Di, a local girl who starts at an elite high school and meets a gang of rich boys. Okay, before you say anything, look. LOOK. I was a teenage girl once. The acting is great, the outfits are amazing (this show inspired plenty of fashion trends in its day), and I love a good class-based soapy drama. Not only did this show keep me enthralled enough to not finish this post earlier, but it’s instantly at the top of my “I’m home sick and feeling sorry for myself” comfort television list.

This trailer is actually pretty terrible, but I’m including it anyway because fellow viewers might enjoy the music flashback. “Almost paaaaradiiise!”

4) Breaking Bad (AMC, 2013)

While Breaking Bad Third Day of Listmas: Favorite TV Shows of 2013 (Amazon link) could never top its amazing fourth season (truly one of the best seasons of television ever, in my opinion), this final season and the show as a whole was always just plain great television. Creator Vince Gilligan could have ripped the heart out of all the show’s fans, but he chose to give viewers the ending they wanted and perhaps not the ending they deserved. While some critics didn’t like having punches pulled at the end, I’m a softie and was actually pretty okay with it.

Here’s the series trailer. Man, “I am the one who knocks!” is a killer line.

Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters
Dec21

Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters

Murf vs. Internet has organized a “Blogger Listmas“, where folks write lists every day during this, the listiest time of the year. You can see more at his site, or look for the #Listmas tag on Twitter.

PS: No “best games of 2013″ list — you’ll have to listen to Cat Context and Game On over the next couple of weeks for that. ;)

——————-

Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters

Style — you got it or you don’t. I went on a search of the most stylish video game characters, in my opinion, and in the end one thing stood out: Japan has cornered the market on fashion-minded characters. Anyway, on with the list in no particular order!

Bayonetta 500x370 Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters

Bayonetta – Okay, so there are a lot of things one could say about Bayonetta Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters‘s outfit (Amazon link), such as the fact that it is apparently made of her hair and disappears as she does battle. But you have to admit that between the outfit and the guns and the hair and the glasses, Bayonetta is one fashion-forward lady.

 

gum  jsr 0 309x500 Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters

Gum from Jet Set Radio – Every character in Jet Set Radio Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters (Amazon link) is dressed like an awesome future graffiti gang warrior, but Gum wins because of her awesome hat.

 

461x1080 Ezio 213x500 Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters

Ezio from many Assassin’s Creed Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters games – The one character on the list from a North American studio, Ezio is charming in-game and has an iconic look. The silver wristguards and the side-cape help, but it all comes down to that sweet, sweet assassin’s hood.

 

Persona4 Glasses Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters

The kids from Persona 4 Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters – These guys made glasses look so cool, there was actually a real life line based on them. And it’s not just the specs! Chie’s motorcycle jacket and kickin’ shoes, Yosuke’s omnipresent red headphones, Naoto’s detective hat — some of these outfits have become pretty iconic for a reason.

 

medium Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters

The King of All Cosmos from Katamari Damacy Second Day of Listmas: Most Stylish Video Game Characters – Is that his head? It is a weird face hat? I really have no idea, but The King gets props here for his colorful style and bravery to wear those tights while drifting around space yelling at people.

Okay, those are my suggestions. What are yours?

The First Day of Listmas: Favorite Let’s Plays of 2013
Dec20

The First Day of Listmas: Favorite Let’s Plays of 2013

Murf vs. Internet has organized a “Blogger Listmas“, where folks write lists every day during this, the listiest time of the year. You can see more at his site, or look for the #Listmas tag on Twitter.

PS: No “best games of 2013″ list — you’ll have to listen to Cat Context and Game On over the next couple of weeks for that. ;)

——————-

The First Day of Listmas: Favorite Let’s Plays of 2013

The future of Let’s Plays seems a little uncertain right now with all the YouTube Content ID stuff still going on.

I’d like to write a proper post about how good LPs transform the material into something different, but this is Listmas, suckas, and I refuse to do any heavy thinking until after the holidays. So instead please enjoy this list of my favorite LPs I watched this year, in no particular order.

(Please note that I do not get too far off the beaten path when it comes to LPs so if you know the genre I’m sure you’ve seen all these before. Unfortunately a LOT of LPers find slurs and rape jokes extremely hilarious, which kinda kills my motivation to go randomly browsing for new channels.)

Persona 4 Endurance Run – Giant Bomb

Okay, so here is what you need to know before starting this: they play Persona 4 from beginning to end. That’s 155 episodes that are roughly 30 minutes each. However, it’s Giant Bomb, so they are informative and hilarious all the way. This LP was done way back in 2009 when the game was new, but both the game and the commentary are still great.

Copyright disclaimer: I owned this game before watching this LP!

Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm – Jesse Cox

I sincerely like Jesse Cox’s LPs despite a million reasons not to: he babbles about things not pertaining to the game, he overacts for the audience, and he’s not the best or more knowledgable player. Even with all this, though, the dude just seems like a genuinely nice guy who genuinely loves Blizzard games. This is a great LP for the newbie SC player or someone who is really just in it for the story.

Copyright disclaimer: I bought this game (and Wings of Liberty) after watching this LP!

Let’s Play The Binding of Isaac – Northernlion

Although Northern Lion is a pretty established name in LPs I only discovered him this year. Part of the appeal is that as a fellow Vancouver-ite he’s got that mellow Canadian thing going on, while part is also that unlike a lot of LPers the dude can play tough games like BoI or Spelunky. NL has done over 600 videos on Binding of Isaac (!), but I recommend starting with #1. Watching these got me playing and loving BoI, which is not something I ever expected.

Copyright disclaimer: I owned this game before watching this LP!

Ride to Hell: Retribution – Men Drinkin Coffee

Ride to Hell: Retribution is a strong candidate for worst game of 2013. No really. It’s full of game-breaking bugs, painfully stilted voice acting, and a plot that barely remembered to show up. Metacritic is flawed in many ways, but this game has a score of 19. Out of 100. And yet somehow the three dudes at Men Drinkin Coffee make it hilarious with their exploiting bugs and ridiculous banter.

Copyright disclaimer: No one should buy this game ever!

Video Game Therapist – resupurae

Okay, so this isn’t a LP but it’s by an LPer and it’s about a game. A couple of weeks ago new game Mighty No. 9, which is in development after being kickstarted, announced that they were hiring a LADY as their community manager, and boy did that not go over well. Fortunately noted LPer Slowbeef and his therapist.. Dr. Slowbeef.. work through the issues.

Copyright disclaimer: All original content, baby!

Page 39 of 122« First...3738394041...Last »
%d bloggers like this: