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Category Archives: Ranting

Rage Against The Monarchy

Long live the Queen?
I’m not fussed.

It seems that I am once again, as a member of the British public, expected to celebrate someone being hideously wealthy and respected for doing not much more than being born into the right family and successfully developing neck muscles strong enough to hold up more gold on her wrinkled head than Fort Knox. We dutifully forget that her reign advocates a class-based system that we’re supposedly trying to phase out, and that her face resembles Emperor Palpatine’s.

The BBC’s coverage of the event would make North Korea proud, with Supreme Leader Elizabeth being shown as unanimously adored by all. I’m not seeing equal attention being paid to the millions of people who don’t give two shits, and that frankly wouldn’t even know that the Queen was still alive if they weren’t getting two extra days off work to remind them.

And yet here we are, with BBC One airing footage of a miserable crowd cheering at gunpoint beside the Thames’ world-famous mixture of sewage, litter and national shame. Forget coverage of the procession, I’m personally more impressed by the fact that the boats that find themselves in this acid-bath don’t literally dissolve. I feel sorry for Huw Edwards being forced to sound as though he cares as he endlessly loops his description of the boats, the bridges, the flags, the rain… the poor man sounds happier reporting on global casualties of war on the news than he does talking about this shambles. This is assuming that the combined viewership of twelve people can actually see anything at all, what with the BBC neglecting to put windscreen-wipers on their cameras.

Sales of bunting, scones and cake have all skyrocketed as the retailers join the Queen in cashing in on this ridiculous parade. There are more Union Jacks flying than in a 1800s colonial invasion fleet, and suddenly everybody doesn’t think Victoria sponge is the most boring dessert in the history of mankind. People battle in the streets over the pronunciation of “scone” before realising that nobody actually gives a shit, and that the only people who actually eat them anymore are elderly Women’s Institute members who don’t have long to live anyway.

There’s a Jubilee street party being held outside the neighbours’ tomorrow. I will, of course, be attending. Not to sabotage it with fire and death – even I can suspend my otherwise uncontrollable hatred for the monarchy if it involves getting some free food before retreating back into my bitter, republican shelter from all this ridiculous and spontaneous patriotism.

The only event that I can see outstripping this in terms of immorality and public demonstrations of anti-monarchy rage is when the Queen finally dies of mysterious circumstances and is conveniently succeeded by Prince Charles. Ignoring all other issues with his very existence, a redesign of British currency would need urgent attention, as they realise that his ears won’t fit on any depiction smaller than a pie dish. Expenses will run into the billions of pounds as ATMs, vending machines, charity boxes, arcade machines, street performers’ hats, and the general public’s wallets and purses will require enlargement to deal with the sudden change (pun totally intended). Metal prices will soar and cable theft will become commonplace; trains will cease to run in the criminal climate and the economy will grind to a halt as the cable-thieves exhaust their resources and move to raiding cars and boats for metal supplies. TV aerials and satellite dishes will disappear off of rooves and we’ll all be forces isolated from the outside world, weeping as we realise how supporting the monarchy stopped us from watching TOWIE. Lack of Essex culture will obviously be the final blow to the morale of the British public, leading to a complete economic and social collapse. Millions lose their lives in the ensuing riots and famine, and the monarchy tears itself apart in a power-struggle over what is left of a new third-world nation. Eventually, Britain is officially removed from all public records and atlases as an act of global shame in our situation, and the rest of the world forgets we ever existed.

Do you really want this to happen? I didn’t think so.

Depose the monarchy.

 
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Posted by on June 3, 2012 in Opinion, Ranting

 

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I love Valentine’s Day

Yes, folks… it’s that special time of the year again. No, not Christian Feast Day or the Martyrs Day of the Iraqi Communist Party! It’s Valentine’s Day, with all the cherished memories it brings.

Long gone are the innocent days where a simple blessing would suffice, or mystery letters were sent from (likely unwanted) secret lovers. Most people see it in one of two distinct ways. If you are on the female end of a relationship it’s probably one of your more pleasurable times of the year, being adorned greedily with flowers, chocolate and whatever the hell else you get paid for consensual sex with. If you are on the opposite, male side or single (like myself) you most likely see it as a heightened celebration of consumerist bullshit second only to Christmas. Those of us unfortunate (or fortunate) enough to be romantically isolated on this day will undoubtable do the following: complain about those in relationships, ponder on the reasons as to why they are single and run dangerously low on self-esteem before remembering gleefully how much money they’ve saved.

There’s no escape from the plague of unbearable soppiness. Every social networking outlet is flooded with tweets from the lonely and statuses from those not; vomit-inducing photos of desperate, last-minute Clinton’s shopping sprees are plastered over the internet for the whole world to feel sorry for. Cameras without wide-angle lenses suffer whilst attempting to cater for cards big enough to shelter the homeless, with all the free space filled vacuously with the same amount of words as a normal card, but in size 72 font. Ecstatic, cheap-chocolate and faux-romance-fuelled girls compete with each other for the hallowed record for most “x”s in a public message, with guys similarly fighting over the most clichéd (“most beautiful girl in the world”, “you mean so much to me”, “luff yhoo for evaarr”).

The TV guide is awash with even more shitty rom-coms than usual, Hugh Grant and Adam Sandler rear their ugly, religiously idolised heads from the dregs of the TV archives and last ditch V-Day advertising attempts are spat out as time runs out in the day for men to show how much they “care”. The only sanctuary from this hideous deluge are the higher-number channels. Not Red Hot Wives – the news channels. But even BBC News isn’t safe, running stories on Valentine’ss to people who, watching the news on Valentine’s Day, more than likely couldn’t give a toss (unfortunate choice of words). It looks like I’ll be watching Al Jazeera tonight.

Suppose you want to head into the outside world? It’s scary, I know, but we single people have to experience natural light every once in a while, between extended weeping sessions. High streets have more flashes of pink than a Cardiff nightclub, and more hearts than a gay man’s Bebo page. Buskers sing a cringe-worthy selection of love songs, like a hideous Tesco Value-branded holiday-special album. One woman performs a shaky rendition of My Love Is Your Love to an acoustic backing, probably unaware of the morbid implications singing a Whitney Houston song could have.

As the day drags on, those tied to another filter off the Facebook and Twitter, perhaps pausing only to fire an inflammatory comment at people who complain about such a undoubtably wonderful day (who would even think of doing that?). The internet, from this point on, is left to fester miserably as the resultant precipitate of lonely hearts are psychologically forced to talk to each other in a thinly veiled attempt to feel a sense of belonging and inclusion with at least one other member of humanity.

Now, those eagle-eyed (or not closed-minded) amongst you will have likely noticed that I’ve referred only to a typical, heterosexual existence. This is simply because I have little to no knowledge of any relationship involving more or less than one penis. Any advice or insight on the matter would be much appreciated, as I am fascinated to know how the dynamics of such a couple (or trio, etc) would work on a day that, more often that not, is discussed and commercialised purely around the concept of one-sided gift-giving, even in this golden age of supposed gender equality.

I’m not even with my beloved on her most cherished of holidays… the night she gets the most attention, more than any other night of the year. Dad wouldn’t let me bring my PS3 home with me. The horror.

 
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Posted by on February 14, 2012 in Opinion, Ranting

 

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“Unexpected item in the bagging area”

Every Little Helps

This infamous slogan is just one of the myriad of methods that Tesco have devised in an effort to convince us that they’re doing us a favour. That we should thank them for clawing the last dregs of wealth from our collective pockets.
It simply reminds me, however, that they are an rusty yet irreplaceable cog in the inefficient, malfunctioning machine of society.

Britain.

Tesco stores have popped up around the UK like genital warts on a prostitute: ugly, unwanted and caused by their frolicking with countless rich men in business suits. The general population, unfortunately, doesn’t get a look-in before the imminent destruction of their tight-knit communities. But never mind, eh? The “economy” (read: politicians) will benefit.

As if this Israel-esque land-grab wasn’t enough, Tesco is also attempting (rather successfully) to infiltrate every aspect of our lives. Insurance, price comparison, banking, gold-exchange, cars and holidays – nothing is safe. Have you watched Wall-E, in which the conglomerate BnL becomes so all powerful that its flag sits alongside that of Earth? Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Banksy demonstrates this sentiment wonderfully.

As well as these aspects which irritate on a national level, I have a few that irritate on a personal level. We’ll work our way down, from the more easily associable to matters that likely only affect and bother me.

Firstly, Tesco’s workforce.
Yes, I recognise they’re just normal people working for a living, but I’m not here to be nice. When they’re not grimacing blankly as they scan items or attempting to steamroller customers with a cage full of milk, they seem be exempt from reality. I can never find them when I need to find something. They don’t exist, at least until you don’t need them anymore. In the rare occasional that I can bait one over (with the promise of a better life, or something) they mumble indiscriminately in response to my request for help locating a particular foodstuff before slipping once more into their demotivational coma. The item is never where they said it is.

Other customers also irritate me. Surprising, seeing as I detest the vast majority of human race. All I wanted was a cold sausage roll, yesterday, from the deli counter. All of ten seconds of service. Apparently, the woman next to me was vastly more important and had more questions than a first-time watcher of the Matrix trilogy (it hurts). After waiting for quarter of an hour, she’d asked about every make of cheese ever conceived and eventually settled on… nothing. She walked away. I nearly tackled her into the meat counter.

Even Keanu didn't understand.

Location of items can easily claim to be one of my most significant sources of anger in the average shopping trip. Some items will be placed in multiple areas, like a horrific, pointless Venn diagram. The World Foods aisle is the central hub of my rage: tortillas are also in the bread aisle, ginger beer is in the soft drinks aisle and pasta apparently isn’t a World Food, yet rice is.
Bananas, “exotic” fruits (like oranges), tomatos and possibly every other fruit in existence have their own designated, signed areas in the grocery aisles, but not apples. No. Apples sit under the sign that reads “fruit”. This is less a locational issue than a logical one: culinary racism, if you will.
On a sidenote: Tesco doesn’t seem to acknowledge that croutons are commonly eaten with salad. They can only be unearthed hiding in a crevice in the cliffside of canned soup. Even I don’t put croutons in soup (my chef does).

At some point in your Grand Quest, you will need a bag. Perhaps you’ll be a good little eco-warrior like the government wants, and buy a big, fabric “Bag For Life”. Now forgive me for assuming that this means they’re the carrier bag equivalent of Superman, but apparently this doesn’t mean that they necessarily survive a single shopping trip. A flatmate and I had innocently used one of these fraudulent abominations to collect our shopping in place of a basket or trolley. One of the handles tore. I have learned, after being redirected countless times by the headset-wearing mastertrolls that seem to hold authority on the shop-floor, that Tesco will not replace a Bag For Life, but they will replace the plastic carrier bags they sell at a tenth of the price as a rain-forest-killing alternative. Make sense?

u mad, Brazil?

If you do manage to find more than ten items in this blackhole of common-sense, you should go to a staff-operated checkout. Otherwise, use the self-service, and only then. Referring back to the customers with about as much brainpower as roadkill, some will defiantly scan an entire trolley of food whilst I stand directly behind them with said cold sausage roll, which is started to heat up from the blood pumping to my fists.
When it finally your turn to use the infernal device, you have to first negotiate a parley with the scanner. Only after you perform the ritual action of rotating the desired item three times, moving it back and forth, in and out and throwing it at the nearest employee will it detect it, asking you to place it in the bagging area. Not one to disobey a machine (think SkyNet), I oblige.

“Unexpected item in the bagging area”.
Undetected foot through the computer screen.

Don't mock me.

Finally, two things that I won’t elaborate on here:

Jamie Oliver. As much as I would love to tear this man from his pukka to his noice, it’s enough for a standalone post.

And Christmas marketing. Already wrote it before it was cool.
Hipster link: https://beachhutt.wordpress.com/2011/10/29/oh-i-wish-it-could-be-christmas-in-december/

 
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Posted by on December 4, 2011 in Opinion, Ranting

 

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How To Kill A Celebrity

Ever since Big Brother finished, and OK ended its coverage of Jade Goody’s decomposing status as a human being, the otherwise drive-less hordes have been seeking their trashy fix.

Now I’m A “Celebrity” has risen its glitzy, shitty head out of the ITV sewer once again, boasting a new roster including “That Guy Who Used To Be In A Band”, “The Woman Who Won A Tin Foil Medal In A Sport No One Cares About” and “Glamour Model #17”.

Like this one. Also: relevant breasts.

I, as a rule, try to avoid TV programming that presents celebrities as human, on a moral basis. Unfortunately, efforts can prove to be in vain when your mother and three siblings record enough of the brainwashing arsematter to supply the entire Chinese propaganda machine.

Sometimes, they even record over my Stephen Fry documentaries.

Stephen disapproves. Also: more relevant breasts.

Now if I hadn’t have heard about this show before, I’d have been excited at the prospect of putting some semi-known people into a hostile, alien environment. I would happily pay my license fee if I could use it to watch Ed Miliband get ceremonially tortured by a plethora of hell creatures. Alas, it is not the case.

It is quite the opposite.
Perfectly innocent snakes are plucked, screaming, from their newborn snake-children. Little cockroach houses burn and spider-wives are carried away from sacked and trampled locust villages over the shoulders of the ITV invaders.

They are then blinded by a sudden brightness, like the second coming of Gandalf the White, through the trees of Fangorn. But no, it’s the genetically altered teeth of Ant and Dec. They laugh, triumphantly, as the “celebrities” are locked in variety of medieval devices that would make Jigsaw proud.

We can dream.

The newfound victims then make a few remarks to the camera, usually asking for a paycheck or wondering aloud why there’s an overwhelmingly green theme on the studio set. They then proceed to do one of two things.

Eat the animals, or scream at them.

Sometimes both.

After the animal-cruelty time allotted by Ofcom has been reached, the newly shamed “human” is released back into the wild. Ant and Dec then hurr and durr, make an obvious joke, then look ever-so-slightly homosexually tense before the camera cuts back to the camp. Prime-time television.

These “Bush Tucker Trial”s, commonly referred to as “Fuck you, PETA”, provide the worthless beings lounging in their hammocks with enough energy to lie in their own filth and argue. I was nearly tempted to watch the show, until my mother informed me that they wouldn’t let the participants starve as punishment for their failure to succeed in the Trials.

One such challenge that I watched last night involved strapping a plastic sphere onto the heads of two contestants, which they had to wear for 30 seconds at a time, without ragequitting or suing ITV.

The twist?
Chainsaws.

I wish.
I’m not sure who had to endure the most, the “celebrities” or the thousands of captive animals dropped in through an opening of the helmet. Snakes, spiders, mealworms… all being crushed under the weight of the petrified mass of confused, angry and agonised animals.

The only moment of entertainment provided was when one absolute hero of a cockroach decided to take matters into its own hands. Like a glorious, pulsating X-Wing, the mass of ‘roaches fired forth one missile of justice, passing into the ventilation shaft of “Fatima”‘s nostril and heading straight for the core.

It was, tragically, removed, but only after the combined efforts of medical staff and Fatima’s retching was it halted in its Quest and ejected through a different orifice in her body to the one it entered. She then paraded her captive through the camp in a repulsive victory march.

Seconds before penetration. Note: just under her left nostril.

Knowing that a doctor was needed to remedy the actions of a single, anarchic individual beggars the question: what if they all rise up against the reality TV tyrants? Now that would be worthy of the primetime slot.

This would happen.

So… the overall message of this rant?
If you want to kill a celebrity, fire more than one cockroach up their nostril.

 
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Posted by on November 29, 2011 in Opinion, Ranting

 

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A Behavioural Analysis of Chavs

Chavs.
Or known to scientists more commonly by their latin name:
Scum.

They seem to be an unfortunate by-product of society. Like the Yin to Britain’s already horrifically disfigured Yang. The only purpose their existence seems to fulfil is to make the other ninety percent of the population seem intelligent, civilised, honest and moral.

This doesn’t excuse them, however, for being who they are.

“Always be yourself”, our primary school teachers would always tell us, as though we were considering identity theft as a career choice.
Unfortunately, being “yourself” isn’t a very wise option for the majority of the Chav community. In fact, it may even be illegal.

They enter life, like most humans, at birth, although other popular theories include Stella gaining sentient form after being left in the sun, or individual specimens spawning into existence every time a kitten is drowned.

After breast-feeding, in which the mothers are rumoured to consume only cider in order to satisfy their urchin’s insatiable appetite for alcohol, they swiftly reach the age required for independent consumption of booze. This is, coincidentally, at exactly the same time that breast-feeding begins with Human children, and is the start of the first stage of Chav Devolution.

It is a commonly known fact that most Chavlets will be raised in a home with more father figures than a Catholic scout-camp. Through this pilgrimage of adultery, the offspring will be introduced to many an own-brand lager, and the merits of beating a mother in a variety of places. The parasitic aspects of each “man” will be eventually amalgamated into one, abhorrent being, allowing them to develop the early stages of Chavhood fully just in time to start their brief, intermittent life in education.

Ah, school. Like a prison, it represents the two things they despise most: authority and intellect. They will constantly complain of the impossibility and pointlessness of simple division and shape-sorting long into their primary years. Teachers will often resort to teaching mathematics in terms of alcohol units in order to engage their drink-addled class, but to no avail.

School is a brief but important phase in a Chavlet’s life, showing them the trappings of a controlled society; showing them what not to become. Luckily, leaving education is an option for their special cases, which is like dressing a dog in an “I love capitalism!” t-shirt and sending it to North Korea.

The second stage lasts through their teenage years, and often right up to the late thirties. Using funds pawned from a grandmother’s jewellery, the average Chav will spend this period in a cocoon of Tesco Value lager, weed and hepatitis, with no fixed abode but their favourite street corner. STI-swapping is a cherished past-time within these tight-knit communities, with each individual branding their personal repertoire as a form of identification in situations where it can be difficult to specify particular Chavs through the identical Nike and Adidas clothing.

Their language will have nearly developed fully at this point in their life. Most of what we would call the English language has been purged from their minds either through peer-pressure or drug-induced amnesia, replaced almost entirely with a back-catalogue of slang and expletives. The Oxford Dictionary is of no relevance at this level, and one must utilise one of the last two cultural phenomena that still bridge these two, very different worlds.
Urban Dictionary.

The wonders of the Peugeot 206 are commonly stumbled upon soon after, with benefit slips quickly collated and photocopied to fund the endeavour. These vehicles will have often suffered more previous owners and write-offs than the new buyers can count on their thirteen fingers. Years of idolising the village-speeding abilities of older peers will finally pay off with the thrill of the first drive. It is worth noting that the erratic driving style of a Chav is purely instinctual, and impossible to eradicate through any means. Turning, unfortunately, isn’t a skill that they are able to comprehend, with drifting acting as the sole means of multi-directional travel. Although the speeds reached seldom reach over 30mph, the cumulative affect of adrenaline, Stella and ketamine will often heighten the experience, inducing a blurred stupor that maintains a feeling of intense speed, even after being pulled over by the “pigs” (translation: members of the local constabulary).

Eventually, the “female” members of the species will fall pregnant. This will, on some rare and wondrous occasions, occur when their age enters the double figures, but this is often frowned upon by the more traditional members of the group. This event won’t often affect the mother after the first year or so; after the novelty of childbirth subsides, normal existence is resumed, often indistinguishable from that of the males. The remarkable independence of Chavlets is often credited to this innovative parenting strategy.

The final stage of Chav development is a mysterious, almost mythical occurrence, few examples of which have ever been recorded by Humans. Most test subjects waste away from a combination of disease and shame before the age of thirty-five, leaving the last remaining steps in the Devolution unattainable to science. Only one has ever survived the earlier stages, sustained on vast fortunes acquired during his departure from the traditional lifestyle of his people. Some experts argue that this wealth excludes Jimmy Saville from Chav classification, but others still defend the theory that he represents the single most astonishing breakthrough into the scientific study of the late stages of Chavhood.

Luckily, there is one resource available to help “fix” the issues of the less fortunate. The other of the two last remaining cultural bridges between our peoples, The Jeremy Kyle Show offers solutions, fame and enough money for the next pack of Richmond Superkings to any contestant brave enough to share their highs and lows with a live audience. Hosted by the (thankfully) inimitable Jeremy Kyle, it also acts as an invaluable resource for behavioural research conducted into the Chav community.

It’s also worth watching for a guilty laugh, even if it retains the ability to spontaneously enrage the viewer.

 
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Posted by on November 10, 2011 in Opinion, Ranting

 

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Battlefield campaign on hard difficulty? Don’t bother.

I played BF3 on PS3, but I’ll assume this happens on all platforms because I’m a cynic.

Now, I know Battlefield was built on the sweaty backs of its multiplayer community, but when I buy a game that boasts a singleplayer campaign I expect it to be good.

“Good”: not asking much. Just a vaguelly coherent storyline with forgettable characters and gameplay that doesn’t make me consider suicide.
Is this too much to ask?

“Yes” says EA (citation needed).

Just to clarify the situation: I’m playing on the hard difficulty setting, as any self-respecting FPSer should. I readily accept the fact that the developers would’ve intended this setting to be, well, “hard”. I have no problem with this; it’s just that I would’ve expected a different approach to a “challenge” than what is employed here.
I expect a game of this calibre to upscale the intelligence of the enemy AI for the higher difficulties. Unfortunately, EA has seen it fit to pummel me into submission with a variety of bullshit alternatives:

Swarming
This is, admittedly, common practice in shooters. More difficulty? More enemies! Battlefield doesn’t necessarily spawn more drones (I die too much to count) but simply codes every one to fire at me. I’ll never leave their sights for as long as I cower behind cover as it gets eaten away, whilst the rest of my squad will happily fumble around, shuffling languidly between concrete barriers and having casual conversations in the middle of no-man’s land. One particular mission comes to mind, when charging down a hill with a hefty number of US soldiers. It seems quite pleasant, both sides exchanging fire over long range, trying to suppress the other, no-one really making any sort of impact. Twenty seconds later, I try my luck and fire my first shot at an enemy in the open, unfortunately triggering a clusterfuck of lead as the entire opposing battalion redirects their fire to what is clearly the only threat on the hill. Marvelous.

X-ray vision
It would seem that this militia-esque generic clone-a-drone enemy has been kitted out with the latest in See-The-Fuck-Through-Everything Vision ™. I can do my best to hide: behind thick clouds of smoke, brick walls, Vanessa Feltz or even in a sewer in Jamaica – they will always shoot me with unerring accuracy. Not only this, but I’ll try lying behind a long wall and crawling to the other end. How could they possibly know that I was on this side? Then, I let a single hair bob above the surface…. The enemy fire so much lead at this one concentrated point that the sheer density of mass creates a black hole, erasing both me and my squad from the face of the earth. True story.

No-scopers
I thought I’d escaped this travesty of game-design when I haemorraged the Call of Duty series into the dirt, but not so. I’ll have waited days on end for an enemy to poke his head out of the exactly the same spot of cover he emerged from the last ten times: standard videogame practice. I neglect, however, that these enemies don’t actually need to aim; as he whack-a-moles out, I barely have enough time to complain (note: swear) loudly before he’s drawn up his twenty pound weapon, aligned the barrel, accounted for wind-speed and bullet trajectory and fired off a single shot that tears through my head and self-esteem. This is on the rare occasion that an enemy will, of all things, look to see where he’s firing. “Looking’s for old people!” he’ll scream in generic russian, before blind-firing my trigger finger off from twelve miles away.
This also applies to enemy tanks. Enough said.

Cover that doesn’t cover
The subtitle here is pretty self-explanatory, but I digress. I’ve had situations where I’ve been lying behind a wall, and been leadraped from the other side. Now don’t get me wrong, I understand that Battlefield has supposedly amazing destruction of cover and buildings (update: it doesn’t), but I would expect this particular fuck-ton of concrete to have more than a few paltry bullet-scars after letting a round pass through. The AI, of course, can differentiate between the walls selected for the immortal treatment and those without, effortlessly. I, unfortunately, do not possess this ability. Or maybe I just haven’t unlocked it yet.

… and non-cover that covers when it shouldn’t cover
On the flipside, I’ve found that select car windows will be made of military ballistic glass, forcing me to use the one of the others. A overturned table can withstand sustained LMG-fire, sofas are contructed of titanium fibres, and an everyday, domestic breakfast bar can absorb twelve grenades without a single scratch on its pristine marble worktop. In summary: some types of cover will detonate if you so much as breath on them (plasterboard) whilst others can withstand a nuclear holocaust (sofas).

PLR Teleportation
Maybe I’m just not up to date with modern warfare (sorry), but the last time I checked not even the most advanced of nations uses teleportation in war. Now I don’t know what this PLR have been working on, but I would imagine that they’d focus more on making sure their AKs don’t lock as opposed to developing world-leading technology for the purpose of orbitally-dropping grunts into the field. This happens way too often in the campaign, and sometimes I’ll be granted with invisible lead death before they even materialise on my screen. EA seem to think they can get away with spawning fodder into open areas when it’s dark; they seem to overlook the thermal scope they coded, and the fact that I can act the voyeur, observing their heat signatures as they pop magically into existence.

Spontaneous death
Continuing from the last point, occasionally I’ll come across a squad of enemies that hasn’t yet been “activated”, for want of a better word. They’ll happily stare at the wall in an unnerving, upright coma. I’ll shoot all but one who, either because he’s deaf and blind or simply hard-as-nails, will stand, unflinching, around five metres the opposite side of a sofa to me. Suddenly, he’ll let out a prolonged deathscream, spin, slide across the floor and through furniture and tear out my throat before returning back to sleep, leaving me, face white, rocking back and forth in my chair. This is not a one-off, either. One early mission requires you to stab an enemy: standard procedure. As I shuffle up to this solitary, apparently witless piece of meat, I’m prompted to perform a stealth kill. I move up to just two metres away, anticipating a glorious melee. Without warning, my character exhales sharply, falling sideways in an apparent cardiac arrest caused from all the excitement. I repeated this a few times, before concluding that this must be another highly advanced strategy used by the PLR, alongside teleportation and personal radar.

So there you have it. Rant about lazy developing complete.
Now to give the multiplayer a spin….

 
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Posted by on November 9, 2011 in Opinion, Ranting

 

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Oh, I wish it could be Christmas!

… in December.

Bloody Slade.

Nothing gets you in the wallet blowing, middle-finger-to-the-economic-crisis mood like a bit of Slade. Apparently.
Sometimes I catch myself humming Winter Wonderland, and have to uppercut my own throat in order to disassociate any feelings of happiness with Christmas.

It seems as though the hallowed Twelve Days of Christmas have extended to just under twelve years, with twelve Christmas preparation cycles overlapping at any one time, creating a endless, retail corporation-fuelled orgy of consumerism.

What I would give to be able to shop without being force-fed tinsel and “Christmas cheer”…. I’m not the Grinch, I just enjoy a bit of NON-CHRISTMAS shopping.

Yes, that’s right folks. Such an activity is still widely practiced.

Oh, I only need to pop down to Tesco to buy some milk…
“MINCE PIES! SAVE MONEY IN OUR SUMMER SALE!”
Or some bread…
“TURKEY NOW HALF PRICE IN THE BOXING DAY SALE! BE PREPARED… STOCK UP FOR NEXT YEAR!”

You know the opening scene from Santa Claus? Where Tim Allen sees Ol’ Saint Nick fall from his roof? Imagine that again, but with me Spartan Kicking him to oblivion, then elbow dropping him from 15ft, just in case.
That’s how I feel.

The only reason the elves didn’t whip out their cracker and baubles any earlier this year is that the last decorations still hadn’t been taken down, the workforce employed to do so too busy eating Christmas dinner with their families. I get sick of trying to innocently walk through Debenhams, only to have to dodge overgrown patches of wild, unmaintained tinsel. I had to be vaccined against the rampant infestation of Santas. Undercover knee fetishests.

“Why not visit Santa’s Grotto? Rudolph is waiting!”
Really? Reindeer in Ipswich? You mean a horse with glittery pipe-cleaner surgically implanted into its skull, hard-wired into the National Grid to light its single, energy-saving, red, nose-mounted lightbulb. Here’s a secret: the “snow” is actually pure, unfiltered chemical scum scimmed from the picturesque, golden beaches of Felixstowe. The sickly-green, Early Learning Centre-felt clothing of the “Elves” exists primarily to shroud the whip-cuts on their skin, left untreated and bleeding to remind them of their shame.

And don’t remind me about Parc, the Christmas catalogue.
“Sign up with us to save a little every month, and have plenty to spend on Christmas shopping!”
So you’re telling me that, if I don’t spend money… I’ll have more money?
No shit.

The corporations are, of course, are only try to save us money out of their own pocket. Defying their obviously samaritan intentions, I still do my shopping in the immediate run-up to the Big Day. Immediate being Christmas Eve. Alternatively, I buy everything in the Boxing Day sales and blame the speed of Super Saver Delivery.

And as a sidenote: if Mariah Carey tries to tell me that she wants me for Christmas one more time, I will personally ride Comet through her living-room window, drive a holly branch down her hell-spawning throat and force-feed her sherry until she bleeds from her eyes.

Merry Christmas.

 
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Posted by on October 29, 2011 in Opinion, Ranting

 

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