July 6, 2009
On Friday, June 26th, Chicago Copwatch hosted a protest against a celebration being thrown for members of the Chicago Police Department who were on duty during the 1968 Democratic National Convention. Anyone that knows their history knows that the 1968 DNC was one of the worst instances of police brutality our nation has ever seen. To add insult to injury, the official website for the celebration uses ridiculous terminology like “Marxist street thugs.” The last I checked, Marxism was a valid political ideology, and the majority of the protesters were students.
What leads me to post the following video is the near complete lack of reporting on what happened that night by the mainstream press. The Sun-Times updated their story to more accurately reflect the events, but over a week after it happened. The press doesn’t mention that fact that we marched almost 3 miles, with police constantly trying to herd us onto the sidewalks. The press doesn’t mention the fact that we refused, and kept marching until the police finally just gave up.
We took back the streets that night, if only for a few hours, and all we have is a Youtube video to show for it.
Yeah, it’s been a while (a little less than three months) since I’ve posted anything, but I am looking to get back in the swing of things. So, expect near daily updates again. I’ve found that balancing being a wage slave, along with a personal life, and game dev, doesn’t leave much time for blogging.
Anyways, in honor of the holiday, I would like to point everyone in the direction of a transcript of a speech by Hal Draper made in 1962. Draper examines the numbers behind the American Revolution to find that it was far from being widely supported.
Yet I must report that the very best historical authorities admit that the percentage of the colonial Americans who supported the Revolutionary side against the British was only – one third. Specifically, according to the best estimates, one third supported the British; one third supported the Revolution; and the last third just wanted to be left alone to hoe their corn.
While Draper’s numbers can be called into question, most modern sources including Wikipedia agree that around 20% of the population were considered Loyalists, or active supporters of Britain during the revolution. The campaign of terror, which included the practices of tarring and feathering and burning houses, against the Loyalists is not something to be celebrated. Our revolution was that of a minority, and that minority used tactics, which by today’s terms would be considered terrorism.
Just a little something to consider in light of the grilled food and fireworks that tend to obscure any real historical value of the holiday.
EDIT: On a less serious note, you may have noticed that I finally registered a domain name! All requests for theblackmask.wordpress.com will be redirected to the corresponding page at http://www.the-black-mask.com.
April 15, 2009
Chicago really doesn’t have much of an indie games culture. While New York has fancy things like the New Museum, and the west coast at least gets the IGF every year, the Midwest doesn’t have much going on. So, I was quite excited when I heard about the Critical Gameplay Exhibit. So, if you’re in the Chicagoland area, you should check it out.
Critical Gameplay is a collection of strategically designed video games. Each game asks the question, what do common game mechanics teach us? The four games in the collection are designed to help reevaluate our perspective on gameplay experiences. Like Critical Cartography changes the way we perceive the world, critical gameplay seeks to offer alternate perspectives on the way we play.
Location: 1100 West Cermak (enter at 2268 S. Carpenter), Chicago, IL, 60608
Time: 6:30pm – 10:00pm
Cost: Free (Open to the public)
Beer, wine and refreshments will be served.
I will be there, hopefully taking some pictures, and I will be posting here with my thoughts on the games and maybe a recap. Even if the games suck, at least there’s free booze.
April 8, 2009
I have been trying out Unity3D recently, and as my trial draws to a close, I am really considering purchasing it. It is by far the best 3D game development environment I have ever used, and I have used my fair share of those. I haven’t really started anything too in-depth, as it might be some time before I can raise the $200 for an indie license, but I did manage to make a couple minigames…just click the images to check them out.
March 25, 2009
Bethesda is currently working with Microsoft to remove Fallout 3’s new expansion, The Pitt. Players of both the PC and Xbox versions are reporting rainbow textured raiders, and an abundance of floating exclamation points in the new DLC. Bethesda is blaming the screwups on “corrupted” files, but my guess is that they simply rushed the product and didn’t think anyone would notice.
I wasn’t really looking forward to The Pitt anyways, as the last DLC to be released for Fallout 3 was Operation Anchorage, which took place inside a virtual reality simulator. Now, to me, placing your expansion inside a VR world just screams “I’m too lazy to actually write a storyline that will actually impact the game world,” and I passed on that, but The Pitt is supposed to take place in the real Fallout 3 world. I hoped that maybe this expansion wouldn’t be a rushed piece of shit, too, but I will be avoiding this, and probably any further Fallout 3 expansions like the plague.
I don’t know why I came to expect anything else from the same people that brought us all horse armor.
March 20, 2009
Sometimes I read a news story that just really annoys me. This is one of them. Not only are people getting upset about human on human violence in videogames, it is now too much to have violence against animals in a game. Fake violence, with fake animals.
Also, let it be known that I will gladly commit acts of violence against any dog named Winnie the Pooh. Honestly, are these people sane? Do they really think that people cannot tell the difference between shooting a dog in a game and acting violently towards animals in real life?