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Crackdown; Two Worlds; Condemned: Criminal Origins; Sacred 2; Jack Vance – The Anome (The Faceless Man); P. C. Hodgell – “A Matter of Honor,” “Child of Darkness”

Posted by Mike on May 18, 2010

Alright, time for another muddled series of prattle notes – I see I’m getting way behind but find these help spur my memory later down the line when I need it… Read the rest of this entry »

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Fallout 3 (Game of the Year Edition), Mass Effect 2, Bioshock 2

Posted by Mike on March 16, 2010

These video games go back a few months, I’d almost forgotten to mention at least the first two, which would be a shame. Anyway video games may be unusual in that they often tend to put out sequels that don’t suck and undoubtedly these are three sequels that do anything but suck, in fact all three were pretty much fabulously immersive and incredible pieces of work. And amazingly I had very little trouble with any of them, in fact the final battles of both Mass Effect 2 and Bioshock 2 I completed first go without dying, which is pretty amazing for me.

Fallout 3 is the Oblivion-ized version of the old post nuclear war video game, which means it’s a lot different than it used to be. But like the previous two Elder Scrolls games (or all of them really), this presents a big sandbox world to play in, a grim, mutant-filled Washington DC area that was so large that by the time I got done finishing all the quests and downloadables, I still hadn’t explored every location. This is partially because my character levelled up extremely fast and would have made it fairly boring to do so. For example in the game, there are some rather horrible beasts called deathclaws that are among the hardest enemies in the game to tackle, but by the time I met my first I was already fairly capable of handling them. Of course the trick to these Oblivion-like games is just to stock up nice and full of things that get your health back, nearly everything else cool in the game comes to you (well except for the fabeled mega weapon that randomly drops from the sky depending on your game, such a windfall never occured for me). Anyway the whole experience was great fun, I thought the main quest was cool and the add on perhaps even better, but the other downloadables definitely felt more like the add ons they were despite some decent aspects. Anyway like most who have played this, I’m looking forward to New Vegas later this year, it’ll be an immediately buy.

As will Mass Effect 3, after a severely improved second sequel. To me this was kind of a level up in the video game industry in that if you had a saved character in the first game you could continue it in the second and the creators managed to make those connections more than just surface level and it really added to the depth, which is good because this is space opera and it could have used a little. Anyway I thought the mechanics were nicely streamlined on this one, all except for the very tedious mineral scanning mini game which after a while I wondered why I was even bothering. Better yet I collected my crew and got them all through the final sequence and even managed to take out the boss at the end without dying once. Overall I thought it was fantastic, one of the better video game experiences with a cinematic grandeur that was quite impressive. Like everyone else I can’t wait for number 3 and the trilogy’s conclusion.

I just finished playing Bioshock 2, which plays like nothing more than a less linear and better balanced version of the first. I thought the first was really one of the all time great video games so had no problem with the sequel being more of the same, especially as it’s hard to replicate a twist ending as good as the one in the first. One great change is having weaponary and plasmids at hand together, it really made for an interesting experience in terms of governing what attacks and strategy you’d use. Once I figured out the best way to take out the other big daddies was using telekinesis back at them, things got pretty easy. On the other hand the big sisters usually wiped me out several times. All until the battle with two of them which I managed to get through unscathed. Of course the strategy of setting up any future battleground with a million mines, trip wires and mini turrets helped a great deal. And that’s why this one seems like it will be fabulously replayable. In fact I read in the latest 360 magazine today that it’s a good idea to stick to only a couple plasmids and that’s something I definitely would have done on a repeat. Is there a 3 on the horizon for this one? I have no idea but I want it. It also seemed to me that occasional artwork paid tribute to the Fallout series  (particularly the Please Stand By thing that shows up in both). Anyway great fun. Honestly it’s hard enough managing time enough to play games like this, and I have to credit my furlough schedule for allowing a lot of it. Next up is Crackdown, emphasis on the crack.

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Fritz Leiber – “Appointment in Tomorrow” (aka Poor Superman); “A Pail of Air”; “When the Last Gods Die;” “Dr. Kometevsky’s Day;” “The Foxholes of Mars;” “Yesterday House;” “I’m Looking for “Jeff”;” “The Big Holiday;” “X Marks the Pedwalk;” “Time in the Round;” Borderlands

Posted by Mike on November 26, 2009

This line of Fritz Leiber stories takes me from roughly July 1951 to somewhere in 1953 (as well as one a decade later). A few of the stories in this order are not here as I read them earlier, either as part of library check outs or the Fafhrd and Grey Mouser series.

“Appointment in Tomorrow” or “Poor Superman” by the time it made The Best of Fritz Leiber is one of those 1950s stories obsessed with the McCarthy era and the whole impending nuclear war that always strikes me as dated in the modern age where the USSR was dismantled and the epithet “socialist” apparently meaning “liberal” in the modern age, which I guess shows to some extent that McCarthyism maybe never went fully away. One of Leiber’s obvious interests is the whole war between science and magic, a theme visited in his Gather, Darkness! novel originally written in 1943. Here it’s all mashed up as a future US is dominated by an organization with a supercomputer. However much is not as it seems as the story unfolds the secret story of the country being controlled by a group of people not interested in science and the scientists who have finally had enough and attempt to confront them. I honestly found it tough to keep interest in the story as it definitely verged on the preachy side.

“A Pail of Air” I liked a lot better, the Earth pulled out of its orbit by a “dark star” ends up killing most of its inhabitants due to the freezing of its atmosphere, except for a small family living in a somewhat preprepared building who periodically dons space suits to bring back frozen oxygen in pails. Of course the young boy whose perspective we see from sees an unusual light on one of his trips implying he’s not alone…

“When the Last Gods Die” is one of those Leiber short shorts that reminds me something of Lord Dunsany’s work, sort of vast epic and poetic but ultimately not terribly filled out. “Dr Kometevsky’s Day” wasn’t great, a futuristic short where the eponymous Dr’s prophecies about planets disappearing appears to be coming true when the moons around Mars disappear and a group of people, all married, notice it. I found that the group marriage concept was probably better explored in a previous story “Nice Girl with 5 Husbands.” “The Foxholes of Mars” was also very short and more like Last Gods, having to do with a future war and its effects. “Yesterday House” I’ve totally forgotten without a reminder, but I remember liking it quite a bit (will have to come back and fresh).

“I’m Looking for “Jeff”” is a creepy ghost story about a woman’s ghost who only certain people in a tavern see who seems to cause trouble with those who do. Her goal like many a spectre is to unleash revenge on the man who killed her, the eponymous Jeff, via the seduction of another bar patron. This one might have fit right into Night’s Black Agents had it not been written so late. And finally “The Big Holiday,” a surprisingly upbeat short short about the inhabitants of an off world town and what they do periodically to celebrate. This takes me up to right before The Green Millenium novel, which will give me a chance to pause a while with Leiber.

Two more, from library books, first the short short “X Marks the Pedwalk,” about the war between pedestrians and drivers and the rules of road rage and what happens when it’s taken a step too far and the attempts to change the rules. It just ain’t like it used to be… Second, “Time in the Round” from Galaxy May 57 (and the Third Galaxy Reader), another future vision where entertainment comes in the form of viewing past time events and a trio of kids who decide to view it, one too young and bloodthirsty who manages to circumvent the strictures keeping him out and the resulting chaos.

So I’ve got to mention the video game Borderlands, which was something of an addiction for a couple of weeks, a loot heavy first person shooter/role playing game hybrid on a planet that’s something like a futuristic wild west. Many of the NPC characters had almost redneck-like accents that were hilarious, particularly the car boss Scooter, who was virtually classic and amazingly I never got tired of. It’s a simple story, you’re trying to find the pieces of a key to open an alien vault that supposedly has secret weaponary or some such thing. Honestly the whole finale really wasn’t much to my taste, but I think maybe I hadn’t upgraded my weaponary enough to make the penultimate stage of the game all that fun (I honestly took off running when I was close enough to the vault). Then I though the boss was too difficult at first, but fortunately there was a teleport I could use to go reload and come back. When I did I figured out that all I needed to do was use a certain area of the map for cover and the boss was pulverized no problem. I also found the car battles a lot more difficult than the straight shooting ones. But for the most part it was just extreme fun throughout the game, one of those “alright just one more mission” games that keep you up late. At the time I’d even put Lost Planet on hold to play it and then after this reading got the best of me, after I got lukewarm with Dragon Age: Origins. But I assume I’ll return to that one when the latest reading frenzy ebbs.

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Marion Zimmer Bradley – The Planet Savers, “The Waterfall;” John Varley “The Ophiuchi Hotline;” Roger Zelazny “The Salvation of Faust;” Return to Castle Wolfenstein; Aleister Crowley – The Book of Thoth

Posted by Mike on November 23, 2009

I’ve been reading a lot lately, it’s actually pretty easy to get into the mood when you start hitting gold and starting with this installment I have definitely hit a rhythm. The Planet Savers is the very very first Marion Zimmer Bradley Darkover book, a series that is very large and one which I’ve never seemed to find much consensus on as to how good it really is. What it basically turned out to be was something of a mountain climbing adventure as a group of humans and Darkover natives attempt to find a cure for a periodic disease on the planet. As it turns out the protagonist is hiding something of a mystery in his own being that actually turns out to be fairly fascinating in the end. I expected to like this a lot less than I ended up which bodes well for later books in the series. It’s definitely a product of the time period or at least the influence of the classic age of science fiction when not everything had to be some sort of deep psychological and layered manifesto, and sometimes I tend to appreciate that. “The Waterfall” was a short story thrown in the same omnibus from a bit later down the line, 76-ish, that was a bit of witchery in a way and kind of creepy as a member of Darkovan nobility seduces a guard on an escapade, which doesn’t work out too well for the guard in the end.

I have to claim “The Ophiuchi Hotline” as the book that really started my reading in earnest. In fact I’m not totally sure I hadn’t read the book in my childhood as it gave me some deja vu and I know I did read quite a bit of Varley back then, probably before I more fully understood the adult themes in his writing, such as the Gaean trilogy. Ophiuchi is the first novel in the Eight Worlds series following a half to a full dozen short stories and it’s about at this time that Varley’s writing is peaking like noone’s business. The whole series really does strike me as a viable future universe where things are so advanced that human sexuality is totally different and cloning abundant (and actually doesn’t even seem particularly dated today). It starts with the protagonist in jail and facing execution for cloning crimes only to be broken out by a shady politician who needs her for research. Deaths are abundant and through the book the protag becomes more than just one operating person. In many ways this is the book that threads together a lot of the Eight Worlds concepts, such as the symbiotes that live in the rings of Saturn; the large underground environments found under the surface of Pluto; the Ophiuchi Hotline itself, a transmission from a different star that’s been feeding humanity most of its future technology for quite some time and has just sent an invoice for its services; and the outer solar system hunt for black holes, the primary means of generating energy for a humanity that has been ousted from its planet by gas giant-based invaders. I’ve since gone on to read the next several stories that all concentrate on some of these specifically (not to mention even characters from the book) so it’s all on my mind. It was impossible not to rocket through the book it was so good, a credit to Varley’s smooth and measured prose. No wonder he was one of the great writers of the 70s and 80s and now I seem to be in the peak of the work and it’s like one home run after another. Few writers are this good on novel #1.

The Zelazny story is a short work based on the Faust myth, basically Faust wanting out of his deal and the resulting state of affairs. I found it a touch confusing but it was colorfully rendered. Wouldn’t have picked it up had it not been in an anthology another Leiber story was in.

And a short step to video games. Wolfenstein, of course, was one of the very early first person shooters, in fact I seem to remember playing the very original even before it was a FPS way back when. Return is an Xbox title and for both the Xbox and the 360 probably the most primitive game I own, somewhere betweem, say, Quake 4/Doom 3 and the previous games in those series. It was fun enough, sure, like most of these games, but the graphics seemed very dated and for once distracting. Course I got to play through some of this with the nephews so it’ll be a bit more memorable than it might have been otherwise. And it managed to unlock the previous Wolfenstein 3D when I finished it so that might be fun later. Oh and I should mention it was terribly easy, even the bosses were little problem.

And finally, Crowley’s Book of Thoth, his latter work on his own tarot set which, for some reason, tends to scare a lot of people, even including people who use other tarots and for some reason I just don’t get why. Maybe I’m just getting too skeptical about this stuff to think of it in terms of Ouija poltergeists and such. Book of Thoth is terribly advanced though, definitely past my ability to truly get what I could out of the book. As it is with most western occultism, everything is couched in symbols, often symbols within symbols, so it definitely read as graduate work, not to mention every few pages saying something like “this can only be truly understood by the most advanced members of the OTO.” Whatever you might say about Crowley he had an almost genius level understanding of a dozen world occult schools to the point where he was synthesizing them into one system, which is something very prevalent in his tarot. In just one card one might encounter tantric, Greek mystery school, kabbalah, alchemic and several other concepts all meshed into one card. Everything has meaning, the colors, the directions, facial expressions, you name it. Of course the issues that held me up as a previous Golden Dawn student are his embellishments on the system based on his Book of Law experiences and the whole change of an Aeon paradigm, which struck me as needing an extraordinary amount of faith to go on, but that’s the thing about Crowley in general, you study him enough and you’re likely to gain surprising and revelationary insights on symbols that show his teachings to be a lot more subtle and well thought out that one might have originally thought. I’m just at the point now where I’d rather be living my life than being embroiled in such intense esoteric work, which strikes me as totally all consuming at this point and nearly as faith based as any other religion.

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Two things…

Posted by Mike on November 5, 2009

First, the new Magma is out. Oh happy day. I’d state the title but my Kobian spelling and umlauting is awful. But if it’s anywhere near a fraction as good as KA is (and considering I’ve heard the whole thing live anyway I suspect it will be), I’ll be very, very happy. They’re still one of the greatest bands of any age and I ordered my CD post haste. Can’t wait. Besides, a skit in Kobaian by Christian, Stella and Vander? Is this the first crack in the exterior? Are those age lines in Christian’s scowl or a hint of a smile?

Second, video game crack is Borderlands. As my pad gets messier and my obligations and other dreams are pushed aside, as I neglect friends and family, as even the new Dragon Age: Origins waits untried, all I can think of is just 30 more minutes please. OK maybe an hour. Oh how did I ever live without a tivo. Is it full yet? No. good.  Oh did that expensive incense stick just burn all the way through without me noticing it? Oh wait that was a few days ago. Let me shoot just one more skag. OK and those bandits. But I could get a much better shotgun. Mine can electrify but the one I have for level 22 is even better. No, I don’t need sleep anymore, they’ll just have to put up with the snoring at work. But wait maybe I can buy a second 360 for work, if I just keep the volume down. Kee-hee another varmint toast. OK I need y’all to clear out, I’ve got a lot of things I need to catch up on and no please don’t turn on the lights…

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Fritz Leiber – “Coming Attraction,” “The Dead Man,” “Nice Girl with Five Husbands,” “Cry Witch!”; Lucius Shepard – Life During Wartime; Dead Space

Posted by Mike on October 26, 2009

Am getting a lot of reading done of late. Read the rest of this entry »

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Joe R. Lansdale – Vanilla Ride, Joe R. Lansdale – Bumper Crop, Star Ocean: The Last Hope

Posted by Mike on October 1, 2009

I go through weird phases in my reading and I’m realizing that one of the best things I can do to start a new phase is by reading something that’s easy to read. Lately I’ve gotten about 100+ pages into Alastair Gray’s Lanark, but its very Kafka-esque feel to it has left me cooling towards the book despite its set up of an intriguing mystery and out of order narrative structure and ultimately cooling me down on reading. Read the rest of this entry »

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Edward Whittemore – Sinai Tapestry, Conan (game), Clark Ashton Smith – Tales of Zothique

Posted by Mike on August 26, 2009

Edward Whittemore’s Quin’s Shanghai Circus is a stone classic in my book, one of the tightest, most profound books I’ve ever read. It’s rare in that it not only has a totally compelling plot and middle but the opening sequence is amazing (hooked almost instantly) and the ending is truly one of the most cosmic, deeply and emotionally affecting conclusions to a book. And I hate endings usually, I rarely find any book’s finale so perfect. So it was with some trepidation that I started Sinai Tapestry, which is the first of a quartet and also the first of Whittemore’s last five books. Which is why it has been a couple years since I read Quin’s, I’m almost afraid to run out of Whittemore.

Unsurprisingly Sinai Tapestry isn’t as good or as whole of a book as Quin’s, but I’ll suggest that’s partially because it doesn’t have a comparable ending to its beginning and middle, in fact I’d say that the last 30 or 40 pages wasn’t nearly as strong as the rest of the book, which indeed was on par with his first book. Whittemore’s one of the most cosmic, evocative writers I can think of, he manages to evoke so much energy and mysticism with only a smattering of words, as if he’s a master of the duality of complexity and simplicity, each revolving round and round as one elucidates the other. He’s also a master of creating almost extraordinarily large characters, memorable people who arise out of bizarre conditions and excruciating pasts. In Sinai Tapestry you meet a gigantic deaf man who’s a product of a bizarre and wealthy English heritage who becomes a botanist. Another is a monk whose discovery of a vastly different original bible (an alternate Codex Sinaiticus) causes him to go to extreme ends to forge a different document and bury the original whose discovery would otherwise change the world, which causes him to go completely insane. And an Irish freedom fighter who takes on the English army by himself before he’s almost tracked down, leaving to Israel disguised as a nun, later befriending an old man wearing the mask of a Crusader who claims to have lived for millenia, defending Jerusalem from all its usurpers. These people and the generations after, are woven together in a tapestry that at its heart shows great compassion, not only in the aftermath of short and sweet romances that fall apart to the suffering of all, but in their greater ideals, to see a city and region riven by centuries of war finally heal itself. There seems to be an almost unwritten idea that there is little difference between the idea of an overall guiding hand causing synchronicities and the randomness of humanity as it struggles with its animal/divine dualistic nature and this is where Whittemore always succeeds greatly, his people not only are larger than life in many ways but they’re real human beings at heart.

Overall, the climax is different yet similar to the massive tragedy at the heart of Quin’s Shanghai Circus, but while that book wraps up its entirely with one of the best, most cosmic climaxes in literature, Sinai Tapestry seems a bit more rushed, and overall somewhat unfinished. But fortunately there are three more books to come with characters in this book crossing over into the next. And from what I’ve read, the second, Jerusalem Poker, appears to be the pinnacle of his work, so I can hardly wait, even if I still have that urge to stretch Whittemore’s five books as long as I can.

Conan, the XBox 360 game, at least to me seems a bit closer to the original Robert E. Howard milieu and character than the movies although I still think they’re going too much brute and too little finesse with the use of Ron Perlman as voice, who seems particularly unenthusiastic in his voice acting during this story. In Howard’s original mythos, you’re always reminded that while Conan is barbarian, he’s also instinctively intelligent in a way that later incarnations never seem to get quite right.

But of course this is an Xbox 360 hack and slash game for the most part, although it does provide some puzzles to solve, most of which are pretty easy with a bit of thought. You’re third person and are given the option of two weapon, weapon and shield and two handed weapon styles of fighting, all of which have role playing like improvement scales, which come in a bewildering variety of button pushing sequences, many of which were often difficult for an aging guy like me to remember (not to mention I got through almost the entire game without even using parry very often). Once you get the hang of the controls, it turns out to be a lot of fun as you fend of hordes of enemies, punctuated with level ending boss fights, of which these are both the most fun and frustrating parts of the games.

First up in the frustrating category, however, are the jump sequences. I found that for most of the precarious jumps, your leaping point was actually graphically a millimeter after the precipice you were jumping from, playing havoc with timing and causing me, in parts, to spend dozens of times just trying to get through a sequence. Second, in the climaxes of many of the boss fights, you spend a lot of time trying to hack the boss up in the right manner only to be sent into a sequence of split second, multi four-button pushes that were easily missed, only to be knocked apart and sent back to fighting the boss. These were particularly frustrating in the latter stages of the game. Perhaps slightly less frustrating was these button pushes show up during some pretty breathtaking cut scene like sequences that I would have enjoyed getting a better look at, in fact the great joy of the boss battles where that they were multipart and epic with all kinds of gigantic moves that were a lot of fun to witness. And I’ll give it to the game, only rarely were the save sequences or restarts inconvenient, which is nice as repeating long difficult segments are one of the most irritating parts of most poorly realized games.

Graphics were pretty great overall and certainly they brought to life Cimmeria and, later, Stygia in equal measure, with scenarios from pirate isles, to a very cool fight with a giant squid like creature on board a ship, to lost cities and big temples. For a game that was really cheap when I ended up buying it (the benefits of getting an Xbox 360 3 years after it was originally released is you can lay back and wait for $55 games to drop into the $10-$20 range) I found this a good buy with the challenges all in the reasonable category. I felt even with difficult boss fights that repeats helped to learn better strategy; in the end only the button presses, which I finally got right of course, were a pain. But yes, this is definitely early 20th century, misogynist sort of fantasy as one gets bonus points from rescuing robot-like topless maidens, but hey at least that’s true to Howard, right?

And remotely in the same sort of feel is Clark Ashton Smith’s Tales of Zothique. I kind of started reading this collection of stories because the fourth volume of collected Smith stories from Night Shade was due out and not only that but late (I just barely held back from posting a diatribe on this company’s rather poor customer service and communication here) and I was ready for another Smith fix after reading Necronomicon Press’s Hyperborea collection years ago. Zothique’s often considered his best cycle and it’s easy to see why. Smith brings a poetic beauty to what is a dark and horrible dying earth milieu where corrupt kings and necromancers conjure up dreadful and pandimensional evils. Each one of his stories bespeaks of the doom of the protagonists, often common soldiers or unwary lovers deigning to rescue their beloved drawn into the vast, uncaring netherworld of uncaring royalty who live lavish and greedy lives and who snuff out lives at barely a whim. In other stories the royalty also gets their penance by crossing their own or other powerful sorcerers. The spectre of early Lord Dunsany reigns pretty heavy over this milieu in both its cosmic size and epic nature, but Dunsany was never so brutal and chilling and despite the Hyperborea cycle having much more overtly in common with Lovecraft’s Cthulhy mythos, this too is riddled with eldritch horror, black curses and an uncaring cosmos. While I think the typical criticisms applied to Lovecraft also apply to Smith, such as cipher characters and an overreliance on drippy adjectives, at the same length so much fantasy today could use such a sense of depth and poetic description, as well as creepiness, as much as we can do without primitive racial stereotypes. But overall I think this is the well, at least in part, where great writers like Jack Vance, not to mention video game designers like those who worked on Conan, got their amazing visual evocativeness from.

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Far Cry Predator (Instincts/Evolution), Steven Brust – The Paths of the Dead, Ursula K. Le Guin – City of Illusions, Doom 2 Master Levels, Doom 3 – Resurrection of Evil, Bentley Little – The Revelation, Daevid Allen – Gong Dreaming 1, Quake 2 and 4

Posted by Mike on June 17, 2009

So I haven’t done one of these what am I reading/playing posts for a little while now, so this kind of dumps the backlog of several months. I’ve actually been catching up with music a bit more of late, which I’ll post to Tom’s Unencumbered Music Reviews blog if and when I get a moment (URL in last post) and am still busy with the incense site which seems to continue to grow. I’m still astonished by the generosity of the people who love incense, lately I’ve gotten more than I know what to do with. Reviews after cut. Read the rest of this entry »

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Prog Rock and Video Games

Posted by Mike on March 20, 2009

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motoi_Sakuraba

I came across this page today and my eyes popped out when I realized how dominant this ex Deja Vu kekyboards player is in the video game soundtrack world. Now this isn’t something I’d probably normally care about, but for some completely odd and unknown reason, I do enjoy a good segment of the bombastic Japanese keyboard prog style (although Deja Vu itself wasn’t one of them). It’s an odd thing because the dominant influence, Emerson, Lake and Palmer, I don’t really like at all, and there’s also quite a bit of Japanese symphonic rock (like Teru’s Symphonia, Mu-gen and others) I don’t like either.

I think maybe it was really etched in stone when I saw Gerard live in concert towards the end of last decade. In many ways the Gerard style’s very close to Motoi Sakuraba’s, heavy organ, lots of bombast and drama, in fact when Sakuraba played live in 2003 he used Gerard’s bass player. Sakuraba I’ve also always liked, although I haven’t kept up on his stuff in recent years, but I was kind of surprised to realize that most if not all of his music comes from video game soundtracks, including Shining the Holy Ark and Beyond the Beyond, both of which I really liked when I finally came across copies (most of the Sakuraba canon doesn’t even really make it over to the US, small copy pressings and such).  I think the latest games he’s worked on which are on Xbox 360 are Star Ocean: The Last Hope and Tales of Vesperia, so I’m pretty curious (I admit that the Star Ocean soundtracks I have heard are a bit foofy, although I suppose that’s like complaining that a brownie hot fudge sundae has too much chocolate in it).

Anyway I’ve noticed before just how so much professional work of previous electronics and progressive composers are in the world of video games. Such as Michael Hoenig’s work on Baldur’s Gate and even when the names aren’t obvious how similar music is to previous composers, the Genesis-like cops in the Elder Scrolls series, the almost scary Pulsar – Halloween like soundtrack of Diablo, etc etc.

I think I’ve just proven that symphonic rock is childish. 🙂

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