Tuesday, 9 August 2005

The Final Countdown

The year 1996 forms a convenient segue from the last post and ties-in with today's safe return of space shuttle Discovery. Prior to completing my final year at Bournemouth, I graduated from console gaming (only to return a few years later with the purchase of a PlayStation) to PC/Mac.

My Macintosh Performa 5200 introduced me to the rich CD-ROM tapestries weaved by LucasArts at the peak of their powers. Dark Forces (favorite FPS), Rebel Assault II - The Hidden Empire (completed between sending off an application to Reuters and accepting the position) and The Dig (demo). The latter remained an enigmatic curio (I'm familiar with Alan Dean Foster's soft cover novel) until this morning, when I obtained a copy of the full game (PC) and played it via the venerable ScummVM.

Based on a story by Steven Spielberg, with dialogue written by Orson Scott Card (The Abyss), the apocalyptic narrative presages Hollywood's meteor movies Deep Impact and Armageddon. The Dig's hand-drawn and animated game art looks fresh and inviting in 2005. Surely this was a franchise in the making replete with animated/live action series and merchandise?

Whilst UK television viewers await the debut of Lost (teasers directed by Madonna and JLo photographer David LaChapelle) on Wednesday night. A few films, that are worth watching more than once, are being repeated. Jean-Claude Van Damme (AKA The Muscles from Brussels) is not an 'action hero' I'm particularly fond of. Yet Timecop (1994) is a riveting yarn from Dark Horse Comics scribe Mark Verheiden (whom responded to a letter I wrote Dark Horse in 1994). Even the wooden Mia Sara can't detract from the forgettable fun to be had. The first time I ever saw Timecop was on a NTSC THX-Certified DTS Laser Disc. The image and sound surpassed VHS and analog broadcast transmissions of the day.

A few of my observations concerning Flickr and Firefox were shared during last night's JMUG meeting. Appreciated.