Tag Archives: star trek

#11 Greatest Video Game of All Time

We apologize for the huge lack of posts this last week, but we are ramped up and ready to go now! In comes #11 of the Greatest Video Game of All Time! If you are unfamiliar with this list, then check the following out:  #25, #24,#23, #22, #21, #20#19#18#17#16#15, #14#13, and #12. Enjoy #11! 

Kai – SimCity Series – For those few of you who haven’t heard of it, SimCity is the city-building game by Maxis that started the entire “Sim” franchise.  I played the original in elementary school (patiently waiting my turn as my school only had a couple Macs).  It was simple but straightforward. As mayor, you zoned the city and managed police, fire, education, and tax revenue.

The next game of the series was the amazing SimCity 2000, which switched the perspective from top-down 2D to isometric and really expanded the depth of the game.  It added city advisors, alien attacks, scenarios, and new city services.  

Several iterations followed, culminating with SimCity 4 (released in 2003).  EA and Maxis followed that with SimCity (2013) which basically killed the franchise due to bugs and a very small city size.  Since then Cities: Skylines has admirably taken up the mantle and made a city-building game worth playing.

I can’t recommend any of the previous games over Cities: Skylines, but they’ve provided awesome memories and created an entire genre of nonviolent, creative games.

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Taking Over Comic Con 2013 (Denver, CO)

I want to avoid making this painfully long so if you want an in-depth review of the roughly five hours we spent at the event, read my biography in a few decades. I’m only saying this because I could talk about those five hours forever. I know we didn’t spend much time there but we made it count and it was completely worth it so let me tell you how we ended up at DCC and how it went.

Months and months ago, the great Stan Lee, inventor of Marvel Comics and most of its iconic characters, announced that he would make his return to Comic Con after a near twenty year hiatus this year in Denver. They published an article about it in the Boulder Weekly and I immediately told Fit. She had never attended a convention, especially one of this scale, so we decided it had to be done. Unfortunately, we had planned to attend a wedding in Santa Monica months in advance to that so we knew we wouldn’t be able to take off of work for Friday and Saturday… bummer. We settled for Sunday and I bought tickets in person at Guiry’s in Boulder at a discounted rate. I bought two one day passes for Sunday.

Months pass and we don’t put any thought into the event or what we should wear. Saturday night rolls around and costume-less, we decided to wear our aprons that we use in the house. Alana was a makeshift fit and cooking Wonder Woman while I was the same version of Captain America, with a Sonic the Hedgehog hat that has ears. It cost us no time and no money but we figured no one would even pay attention to us but oh were we wrong.

Excited!

Excited!

Before leaving

Before leaving

We drive to Denver and pass a line that stretches for half a mile. Ten minutes after parking we end up at the back of that line and wait for the doors to open around 9:30 a.m. Almost everyone there is so nice and accepting of one another. The only people I don’t like are the bullies that make fun of other people. And we don’t tolerate bullying so there was none of that, but rather lots of positive reinforcement, high fives, and pictures. I will say that we got our money’s worth in people watching alone. The cosplays and costumes were top notch and I loved how passionate everyone was. We tried figuring out everyone’s costume and did a really good job. We even helped some clueless people by eavesdropping. Our first picture came when I ran into none other than the hero of Hyrule, Link. He was sporting his red fire tunic and the Master Sword. Link is super fit so I had to take a picture with him.

Link!

Link!

While the line was moving, the most unexpected thing happened. A photojournalist asked for our picture. We obliged and posed… little did we know, this would happen about 14 more times throughout the day. We never expected to be so popular but vendors, exhibitors, staff, photojournalists, bloggers, and attendees asked for our picture. One young woman who was with her friends even asked for a picture with us. Not just of us. We said yes and gave our regular pose every single time. I would love to see those 15 pictures especially the one with our fan because it was so random. Either people loved the idea that we were wearing aprons and it was creative or they thought we were fit and somewhat sexy.

Hungry and Fit! Our pose

Hungry and Fit! Our pose

Once we got inside we headed upstairs for the main hall. By doing this, we ended up missing a bunch of the panels and presentations we wanted to attend, such as the spotlight on Wil Wheaton and Felicia Day. What can you do? We don’t regret our choice because we had our most fun upstairs. When we ended up looking for the panels, gaming rooms, main events, and what not we ended up just wasting energy and getting frustrated. The easiest way to do this is just explain what is in our pictures since they highlight the best parts of the day.

Celebs

Celebs

Here is Fit posing with Han Solo trapped in carbonite. Damn you Lando for selling him out to Vader and Boba Fett. This was a part of the Far Away Creations area where a group of Star Wars fans provided models and replicas of the original trilogy. Lots of fun.

Here is Fit posing with Han Solo trapped in carbonite. Damn you, Lando, for selling him out to Vader and Boba Fett. This was a part of the Far Away Creations area where a group of Star Wars fans provided models and replicas of the original trilogy. Lots of fun.

After trekking through some aisles of vendors and trying our hardest not to spend every penny, we decided that we could each have one big purchase. Fit decided quickly that she wanted a picture with Chewbacca. Thus we paid Peter Mayhew for a picture with our camera and he autographed a photo of Fit’s choice. She chose a scene where Chewy and Han are wielding their bowcaster and blaster pistol. Epic. He was huge. He was as tall as us while sitting down and his hands were enormous. She also ran into a Storm Trooper with an awesome voice box and a Jawa.

Alana with Peter Mayhew (who played Chewbacca) --she can't contain her happiness here

Alana with Peter Mayhew (who played Chewbacca) –she can’t contain her happiness here

NEVER LETTING THIS GO

NEVER LETTING THIS GO

"Move along, move along"

“Move along, move along”

Now it was my turn to decide. William Shatner, George Takei, Felicia Day, and Wil Wheaton were all tempting individuals to meet and take a picture with but my decision was a no brainer. I wanted to meet and take a picture with Kelly Hu. I had a massive crush on her when I was a teenager. She starred in The Scorpion King, X-Men, and voiced Visas in KOTOR II. For some reason, she had no line while all of the others were absolutely packed all day long. Her picture proceeds went to Much Love, a charity for animals. She was super nice and was happy to talk to us about everything from shopping on Amazon to our pets and more. Here’s the picture.

Kelly Hu and I

Kelly Hu and I

After that I got caught by Umbrella Corp because I was infected by a zombie. Their vehicle was awesome.

After that I got caught by Umbrella Corp because I was infected by a zombie. Their vehicle was awesome.

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Here I am spying on someone’s crafts hoping to get some ideas for a friend. Secret agent style.

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This is a co-worker’s ex-boyfriend showing why he was the coolest guy in the room. He’s a self-taught lightsaber master but he had a hard time actually talking into the mic. The crowd loved it though so good for him.

Gandalf! Literally hunted him down the whole time and finally found him

Gandalf! Literally hunted him down the whole time and finally found him

Fit met Gandalf and he let us pass.

Buff chicas

Buff chicas. She actually made that armor!

Fit’s favorite costume of the day was Commander Shepard from Mass Effect.

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Hungry’s favorite costume of the day was a Hello Kitty samurai. He let me hold his war banner.

Hungry and Fit! Our pose

Hungry and Fit! Our pose

Here we are on stage finally getting a picture of us together after fifteen other people took them first.

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Fit found a bantha to cuddle up next to. It looked like a baby.

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Hungry found a sausage for lunch while Fit had a pear salad. We spent a bunch on bad food there but it was expected and we didn’t mind.

I know my brother (Kai) would've loved to play this

I know my brother (Kai) would’ve loved to play this (I’m Gonna Wreck It!)

Fix It Felix Jr. does exist! We didn’t get to play.

I could go on and on but I don’t want to bore you too much so we’ll leave it here and keep you updated the next time Hungry and Fit attend an event!

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Hungry’s Movie Reviews: Star Trek Into Darkness

Either one of us could have and wanted to write this movie review, but our hectic schedule recently it fell onto my shoulders. With that being said, I am pleased and almost even honored to be able to review this movie. I have seen all of the previous Star Trek feature films in the franchise although I remember some better than others. I have seen most of the original series, nearly all of The Next Generation, most of Deep Space Nine, all of Voyager, and nearly none of Enterprise. I have attended some minor conventions but I do not consider myself a Trekkie.

Honestly, I was usually forced or felt obligated to be so involved in the Star Trek universe because my father and brother were such large fans. I believe that my brother knows more about Star Trek than nearly anyone but all of those hours I spent watching him play every Star Trek video game led to my own absurd knowledge on the subject. That is why I feel that I am a capable critic for this movie. I am objective because I never loved the series but I am knowledgeable because of my vast experience in the field.

Alana loves the team that created 2009’s Star Trek because they also brought her Lost. She is a huge fan of the first movie and was far more excited than I was about this sequel. The first point I would like to make is that the soundtrack is stellar. It utilizes themes from previous movies and television shows but remasters them. This brings about a very nice nostalgic atmosphere for fans old and new. The soundtrack also fit the context of the movie perfectly and was honestly what I feel was the most successful element of the movie. Special effects, makeup, costumes, and sets were all very streamlined and stylized compared to what was offered decades ago. It accomplished this effect, for me, without diverging too far from being authentic.

The original crew returned and continued to provide solid performances. Zachary Quinto was phenomenal. Chris Pine was good. Simon Pegg provided great comic relief. JJ Abrams was successful in many ways and it is reflected by critic reviews, box office numbers, and some fanboys’ feelings.

Here is my only qualm and it is a major spoiler so please do not continue if you are a Star Trek fan who is familiar with the back story… the WAY back story. Cumberbatch was perfect as Harrison but he is not Kahn. He did not live up to Ricardo Moltoban’s performance in what is widely seen as the best film of the series. They completely ignored the back story and history of the most prominent individual villain in Star Trek, period. Luckily, it did not take away from the context of the movie that Abram’s built. All of these successes, mixed with solid plot twists supported by a misleading trailer, make Star Trek Into Darkness as one of the most entertaining entries in the series. I would rank it in my top 5 all time of the 12 total choices. Off the top of my head, my list would look as follows.

1. The Wrath of Kahn – The greatest villain in the series creates the Enterprise’s greatest challenge.

2. A Voyage Home – Childhood memories and a comedic self-reflecting take make this one enjoyable.

3. First Contact – A powerful race tries to assimilate humanity as TNG crew fights back.

4. Star Trek – The series reboot provides fresh faces and style as Star Trek “enters pop-culture.”

5. Star Trek Into Darkness – Arguably the greatest back to back delivery, depending on how you feel about The Search for Spock.

6. A Search for Spock – Nimoy’s directorial debut takes Star Trek further outside its box and ties together two great films.

7-12. Final Frontier and Undiscovered Country were enjoyable as a child but were not more than that. Generations fail to capitalize on its title’s concept. Nemesis loses fans as it fails to achieve blockbuster status. Insurrection is nothing more than a bright mess. The Motion Picture bores all with its symbolic and body-less villain.

Watch Star Trek Into Darkness Online

We may go back and watch the classics again because it’s been so long and Alana hasn’t seen them all but from my memory that is how the list stands. Whether you’re a movie fan, a Trekkie, someone like me, or just someone looking for a good time, I highly recommend you go out to theaters and watch Star Trek Into Darkness.