Thin as ice

My conscience called in sick again

Wednesday, November 23, 2005 | 10:47 AM | by
Sooo... yesterday a shiny Xbox 360 god-machine arrived at my front door. Fervishly I unhooked my regular Xbox. My "yesterday's news" Xbox. My "Get lost, I'm now dating a younger and sexier" Xbox.

I hooked up the new hotness to my big screen tv, which is a pain because of the plethora of wires that camp around that thing like fucking snakes, ready to eat a grown man whole. A few less wires now that the 360 has taken residence there, I don't mind pointing out.

Got the wireless controllers recognized with ease, and fired her up.

I got to play for about a half an hour before I had to leave to go to the Nintendo Fusion Tour. But more on that in a moment. I do want to give you my first impressions before I head off for some Giving of Thanks.

Wireless. Holy shit man, how did we ever play video games tethered to the machine like some digital slave by such a primitive cord. It's got me bugged out though, to be sure. I keep finding myself escorting a phantom cord. I do that shit, you know, where you respect the cord.

Like if you're sitting on the couch, and you want to get up, or shift positions, and you flick the controller in the air to clear the cord from any entanglements, and so you don't trip over it and fall down like a retard. I keep doing that flip, but I don't have to it anymore. Crazy shit, man.

There are a lot of nifty options to customize your gameplay experience, which I will have to properly explore shortly. I wrestled with the official Xbox website and finally got my Xbox Live! gamertag transferred over to the 360. I'll be on there soon enough, and I'll give out my gamer card or whatever that shit is. Fair warning though, when I gave it out last time, my friends list filled up in about 20 minutes. Unless they changed it, you can only have a limited number of people on your friends list, so it's first come, first served guys.

Anyway, I'm sure I'll be talking about the 360 regularly over the next couple of weeks. Games and peripherals and online sexiness.

The Nintendo Fusion Tour was pretty awesome. Britanny and I pretty much skipped the gaming kiosks. They were a pathetic sight indeed. I would have expected more, but I guess once you've seen E3, any other attempt will seem lackluster.

The bands put on a great show. Panic! at the Disco, Motion City Soundtrack and Fall Out Boy especially. The show alone would have made the drive worth it, even if not for what happened on the drive up there.

I want to preface this by saying that I never wish another human being physical harm, no matter how retarded or ignorant or mean they are.

On the drive up to Providence, it was raining out. At times it was serious downpour. And it was dark. And I don't know if some of you have seen the Jeep I drive, but it's a lifted Grand Cherokee. You don't speed in SUV's even when they aren't lifted, that's just stupid. But at nighttime, in the pouring rain, in traffic, you take extra caution.

So I was driving at 60-65 (65 being the posted speed limit) and in the right lane (I was still passing passing people, even going the speed limit). But that wasn't fast enough for this jackass who comes tearing up behind me in a pickup truck.

He's riding maybe 6 inches from my bumper, swerving from side to side, flashing his brights, the whole deal. Fuck that, I'm not moving for this dipshit. If he wants ahead of me, he can just go around me. And he does.

He does one of those, you know, swerve-out-and-rocket-by moves in a sort of "screw you pal, I'll go fast if I want to" attitude. He was going easily 90mph. In the rain. At night. Fine, good for him.

About five minutes up the road, he's doing the same thing to someone else in the right lane who isn't going fast enough for him. And when they don't move, he looks for his opening in the left lane. And he tries his "swerve-out-and-rocket-by" trick. But it doesn't work this time, because when he swerves into the left lane to speed past the car in front of him, his tires give out.

Amazingly, he didn't hit anyone else on the road, but he launches into a flatspin, doing at least two complete 360's (see that shit? that's the number of the day), bouncing off the guard rail, and ending in the ditch on the side of the highway. I say "at least" two 360's because I couldn't count them. There were some cars blocking my view, so mostly what I saw as he spun was "headlights.... darkness... headlights... darkness...".

It wasn't the kind of action I imagine anyone got seriously injured in. Miracualously he did his stupidity dance across a lane of traffic without hitting anyone else, or flipping his truck. The spinning did tear one of his wheels off, which rolled by me as I passed, as if to say "please, take me with you! this guy is a jackass!".

So his truck is fucked up, and I'll bet he was pretty shaken up. And suffice to say, I think he deserved it. Driving like that, in adverse conditions, he's lucky he didn't kill anyone. I hope he isn't seriously injured, but beyond that, he had what was coming to him.

The people ahead of me stopped to assist, so I drove past. I should have stopped to tell the police officer how he was driving, but that's not my place and I had a concert to get to.

Speaking of going to Providence, Digital Overload, the official CAD LAN party has been announced! I'll repost the news blurb below this, but I do want to make mention of one very important thing.

We are limiting attendance to 750 people for our first event, which is still pretty large for a LAN party. As such, tickets may sell out very quickly.

Tickets will go on sale Monday. You can find information on rates and such on the front page of the Digital Overload Website. Please read it.

I can't say it enough, this is shaping up to be one hell of an event.

Oh, if you missed the Xfire chat the other night, you can grab the transcript here. It was a really fun event, and a huge thank you to everyone that participated. We'll do it again sometime.

Digital Overload 2006

Wednesday, November 23, 2005 | 10:49 AM | by

Behold, the Ctrl+Alt+Del LAN event. I mentioned that we were planning this a while back, and a lot of people have been eager for details, and now I can finally cough up a few.

Digital Overload 2006
is currently scheduled to be held in Providence, RI, in early March. I've got a great group of people working on organizing it, and I can tell you, it is shaping up to be one hell of an event.

See, I attend all of these conventions, and I love seeing fans, but I never feel like I actually get to interact with them. First of all, I mostly have to attach myself to anime conventions, since they are the most abundant and accepting of webcomics. So for someone to come see me that may not even like anime (or at least not to the extent of attending a convention dedicated to one), they would have to travel to and buy entry into some Anime Convention.

Then they've paid their entry fee, and I am but one tiny little part of this huge con, somewhere in the dealer's room or artist's alley. And then I'm always behind a table, like I'm on display or something. I get to talk to fans, but there is often a whole line of people also waiting to talk to me, so I feel rushed. I rarely ever get to just hang out with fans and chat.

So that's what Digital Overload is about. Removing all the extra convention bullshit. Dedicating a whole event just to Ctrl+Alt+Del and its fans. Something where we can get together, and I can play video games with fans for a couple of days straight. No tables, no formality, just screaming at eachother in good fun as we LAN late into the night.

Turkey Day

Thursday, November 24, 2005 | 05:03 PM | by
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.