The Sunshine Blogger Award Challenge… Thing

Sunshine Blogger Award
It’s sunny. In Manchester?! Hahaha! No.

Righto, so Extra Life demanded we do this thing – you should check out that blog for some excellent insights into video games. The downside? There isn’t much profanity on that blog. There should be more. Like, a swear every single sentence. Anyway, that’s just our dream, perhaps we’ll offer a bribe to get that to come to fruition.

Sunshine Blogger

The way this thing seems to work is a batch of questions get set, then other bloggers highlighted have to respond (on pain of death). Okay, then, better get to it and answer this video game and film related batch of questions. Oooh! Fun! Get ready for some highly opinionated, provocative, intemperate, and controversial ranting from our esteemed editor, the legendary Mr. Wapojif.

What is the dumbest competition you ever got in with your friends?

Back at university in 2004, we decided to do (in shifts) the Dreamcast game Le Mans 24 Hours. As in, the 24 hour race option. It seemed like a good idea at the time.

If you could form a band, which genre of music would you end up playing?

I was in a band when I was at university – I’m a drummer. Indie music, or rock would be fun. Jazz, even, I’ve got pretty nifty with traditional grip drumming over the last year. I’d want to do a Ginger Baker, but I don’t have the skills for it. Want to know more?! Oh hey, check this out: A Brief History of Drum Solos.

What is the first film you ever watch in a cinema?

Cripes… it would have been a Disney film, most likely – Mr. and Mrs. Wapojif would have taken me along to see it. Quite which one, I have no idea. I remember seeing the Little Mermaid, that’s for sure. Very macho of me.

What is the oldest film you’ve watched all the way through?

Yeah, probably Metropolis (1927) which still has incredible production values. There’s also the above bit of footage, which is the oldest know video from history. It’s from 1888 and is known as the Roundhay Garden Scene – it was recorded in Leeds, England. Louis Le Prince, who invented the motion picture camera, lived in the UK and US and filmed it. Fascinating, non?

Have you ever fallen asleep watching a film before?

No, I always make sure I watch a film all the way through. If I was that knackered, I wouldn’t start watching a film.

What is your personal record for most number of films watched in a day?

I had a spell of unemployment back in 2014 (I was fired for punching my boss in the face) and spent my days applying for jobs online whilst watching Netflix. I went through about six films in one day at one point, which was good going.

What is the single most heretical opinion you hold when it comes to video games?

The modern infatuation with HD graphics and specs is severely misguided. It seems all the majority of gamers argue about is which console has the best graphics. Some could argue this improves the technology to create better and more innovative games, but the opposite is clearly happening with a generic landscape of ultra-violent AAA titles which simply don’t interest me.

To back up my point, the indie scene, which harks back to NES/SNES era aesthetics, has proven gameplay and an excellent soundtrack are far more important. I’ve had far more fun on a game like Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment than the vast majority of AAA titles, to the point where the indie scene is now primarily where I head to get my gaming fix.

What is your proudest achievement playing a game?

Probably on Mario Kart 8, to be honest. If you manage to emerge from one of the chaotic online races in 1st place, it’s a really thrilling moment. I’ve scraped some incredible victories with a mixture of brilliant (check out the modesty) driving, a bit of luck, and overcoming the odds to land a win. Super.

What do you believe to be one of the few advantages that gaming critics have over film critics?

Well, the pick up and play nature of games means you can abandon them at any moment to focus on other things. Film critics (if they’re in the cinema, rather than watching on Netflix) have to stick with it for several hours. However, games journalists have to deal with many obnoxious and ridiculously over-entitled gamers, which can’t be much fun.

Have you ever binge-watched a show?

Not for more than a few hours at a time. I prefer to pace things out so I can pad out my days with various activities (such as picking my nose).

Do you follow any webcomics?

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Yes, but only one – the Oatmeal. I catch up with it every few months as it can be funny, plus Matt Inman really has his logical head screwed on properly (pretty rare in the online world). He also loves dogs, which is always good. Check out My Dog: The Paradox.

8 comments

  1. Yeah, I have said in the past that I’m surprised that the AAA industry has sustained itself for this long with their current strategy. Considering the sheer amount of money that goes into every mainstream release, they would have to sell millions upon millions of copies just to break even. It’s probably one of the factors that led to them adopting less-than-scrupulous marketing tactics (on-disc DLC, loot boxes, etc.).

    The gaming critical circle doesn’t really have many advantages over their counterparts in other mediums, so that’s why I asked the question. I’d say one of the very few ways in which they can claim to be better is that they can declare works such as Undertale and Breath of the Wild the best of the best. Works in such genres would be dismissed come award season in films – even if they’re universally beloved. The judges involved in those ceremonies seem to reward films for doing very specific things.

    Oh yeah, I saw that old footage myself. It really is an intriguing piece of history. Funnily enough, the oldest film I’ve seen all the way through is also a Fritz Lang film, though it was released a few years after Metropolis – M. I want to check Metropolis out too at some point; it’s really awesome that they managed to find a lot of the lost footage.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yeah, good point journalists in the games industry. With the Oscars it’s not really about the best film, there has to be a certain set of tacit criteria to meet that no one really knows other than the judges. I remember when Argo won Best Picture and I just… what?

    I live near (ish) to Leeds, so it was surprising to learn it was filmed there. Metropolis is legendary for its special effects – way ahead of its time. I always think of a scene from Frankenstein, too, which has the most incredible practical effects for its era. Top marks to those clever Hollywood bods of the era.

    Liked by 1 person

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