Monday, 30 April 2012

Apocalypse Pizza & Video - We Deliver Your Order Amidst The Chaos

When civilisation as we know it comes crashing down around our heads and hordes of the undead fill the streets, one question more than any other will be asked in hushed tones inside safe houses across the globe:

"Where can I order a Pizza and a movie for me and my fellow survivors to enjoy whilst hiding away from scores of brain munching zombies amassed outside?"

Well luckily, Apocalypse Pizza & Video will have you covered.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Happy Birthday ZX80! - The Little Kilobyte That Could Turns 30

I imagine that in 1982, trying to find someone who could use a computer, let alone someone who owned one wasn't easy. Back then when the ZX Spectrum first launched, computers were expensive, chunky, and complicated.

We've com a looooong way, Baby!

British company Sinclair Research wanted to change all that. Aiming to produce computers which were affordable, simple to use and, by 80's standards, compact. the ZX80 was its first attempt. 

The ZX80 - Amazing to think this was cutting edge only 30 years ago

£100 bought you a basic model with a whopping 1KB of RAM and that iconic (& shitty) membrane keyboard. The ZX81 arrived a year later, using the same Z80 processor & 1KB of RAM, but it was cheaper (yours for around £70) and it came housed in a slick black case complete with the same shitty membrane keyboard of its predecessor.

The ZX81 - Sleeker & Cheaper.
And later with added rainbows.

The ZX Spectrum is largely responsible for starting the home computing revolution in the UK. Released on the 23rd of April 1982, it was small, you didn’t need a monitor – any TV would do, and while the use of cassette tapes as a storage medium for games and software might sound like madness to younger ears, this made games (or at least copies of them) relatively cheap.

Although I was only young when we got our first computer (a Commodore) owning one at the time brought with it a range of experiences which have now passed on into electronic legend. Who could forget the seemingly endless wait for a game to load as you stared at an ever strobing 8-bit Jackson Pollock while the screeches and beeps coming from the machine filled your living room? (The “Beeee beep. Beee dee diddly-diddly” sound computers made as they dumped the info from the tapes into the computers memory have been seared into the eardrums of older gamers like a sort of nostalgic Tinnitus). 

And People Complain About Skyrims Loading Screens...

Then there were magazines with type-in games which never worked. You would spend hours sitting patiently as a parent or sibling would read out each line of code as you clumsily typed it in with one finger only to finish and excitedly hit run, play 3-4 minutes of the game then have it crash on you.

Despite its technical flaws, the ZX Spectrum is still one of the most celebrated home computers of its time. Other machines may have been more powerful, but it was the Spectrum more than any other, which helped inspire a generation of teenagers into learning how to program, which in turn helped build the UK games industry that dominated the market throughout the 90's console boom. 

So raise a glass for the little Kilo-byte that could as it celebrates it's 30th birthday, it deserves it.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Plagiarism Or A Tenuous "Link"? - Author sues Ubisoft

American science fiction author John L. Beiswenger is having a stab at suing Ubisoft over alleged similarities between his novel "Link", and the Assassin's Creed franchise. This isn't the first time someone has tried to call "minesies" on a rather lucrative intellectual property but this guys claims may actually have some weight.

Plagiarism or a tenuous Link?

The main point of the authors suit is that the premise of his novel; that the memories of an Ancestor can be "accessed, recalled, relived and re-experienced" by using a nifty gadget called a "Bio-synthesizer" has been ripped off by Ubisoft, with nothing more than a name change to hide it.

Now I'll admit that that does sound quite similar to Ass Creeds "Animus", but then again I don't think that Beiswenger solely owns the rights to the concept of Memetic Legacy...

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Zombie Apocalypse: Are You Prepared?

Zombies. They're coming sooner or later,  it's inevitable.  Question is, are you prepared? 

Be prepared or be Zombie food.

If the killer robots don't get us first, those undead rotten bastards will. When Hell fills up and the dead walk the Earth you should already be (at least a little) prepared & if your not, then don't come crying to me when the shit goes down. I'm all good to go. A pack with survival essentials, a meeting point for me & my buddies and a good solid weapon are all packed and stored away in an easy to reach location for when the breakout starts. You wont get one up on me Apocalypse!

Required reading if you want to survive.
Max Brooks knows his shit.

If your not prepared and end up getting caught with your pants down and nothing but a fork to protect yourself with, Map of the Dead.Com can help. Just stick in your location and, using Google Maps, it will break down the locations indexed by Google and highlight in red, the areas most highly populated & therefore most likely to be teeming with Z-Heads. It also points out where your nearest landmarks, supermarkets, shopping centres, military bases, petrol stations, hospitals, camp grounds, radio towers, and even grave yards are so you know where to go to stock up on supplies or head for sanctuary (or in the case of the grave yards, avoid them like eggs at a buffet).

Just don't get comfy and stay too long...

Obviously any highly populated city is going to be dangerous. But with careful planning & plenty of  forethought, even the meekest can survive. As you can see in the image below the area around my house looks fairly safe although I live within walking distance of 3 schools, 4 pubs and the Town centre so I'm taking no chances.

Now obviously the internet is going to go down at some point during the outbreak , so be sure to print out a hard copy or mark what you need on a real map put it with whatever else you have packed for when Z-Day comes. 

Good luck and don't forget:


Wednesday, 4 April 2012

A Thousand Kisses Deep - Not An Underground Romcom

If I had to guess what type of film "A Thousand Kisses Deep" was without knowing anything about it, I would probably think it was some sort of saccharine sweet Romcom. Something starring the standard girl next door/greasy douche bag combo who spend an hour and a half gawping at each other as the standard "will they? wont they?" horse shit plot unfolds to its soppy conclusion. Maybe it takes place deep underground...

Something like this.
Don't you just want to punch them?

Well I'd be wrong. Turns out it's a British made psychological thriller, directed by Dana Lustig (Wild Cherry, Stranger Than Fiction) starring Emila Fox, Jodie Whittaker and Dougray Scott.

I'll put the trailer before the plot run down because it gives quite a bit away in terms of the stories twists & turns, and you might think it a bit spoiler-y.

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

What It Lacks In Clowns, It Makes Up For In Crazy - David Lynch Music Video

Check out this bat-shit crazy music video from movie director, song writer and all round weird dude David Lynch.

The title track from his album "Crazy Clown Time" released via Sunday Best Recordings, is far from catchy, and is unlikely to be topping the charts any time soon but it is definitely contender for the weirdest video I've seen in a while & is cool as hell to boot!

From what I can tell the narrator/singer/whatever is supposed to be a child trying to explain what they saw happening at a party for adults, which just makes the video that little bit creepier (not that it needs help), but I could be wrong...

I think its easier for you to just watch it & judge for yourself.

Monday, 2 April 2012

Batman + Lego = Awesome! Dark Knight Rises Trailer Recreated With Lego

If you ask me there is nothing in this world that can't be made better with Lego.

Unless it's Glee.

Nothing can save that "twee as a Baby riding a Unicorn over a rainbow" garbage. Not even a story arc involving a serial killer with sensitive ears and a dislike for catchy pop songs, but I digress.

I'd rather eat all these Legos
than watch 5 minutes of Glee

The internet is full of awesome people doing awesome stuff with Lego, as the custom BTTF Delorian I posted about the other week goes to show; but what's better than building something cool out of Lego? Building something cool out of Lego then making stop motion animations with it! There are a lot of these on Youtube, some are good, some... not so good, but this trailer for "The Dark Knight Rises" made entirely out of those little plastic foot killers is absolutely amazing.

Bane even looks awesome as a mini-fig!

Made by Forrest Fire Films, this has to be one of the most impressive Lego animations I've ever seen, not to mention the most accurate when compared to the "real-life" version.

Check out the 1 minute 30-odd seconds of all plastic awesome below:

Now watch the original trailer:

Pretty impressive right?

I'd love to see a full length Lego Batman movie, but I guess I'll have to make do with "The Dark Knight Rises" (filmed with boring humans) when it hits cinemas this summer.

Head over to Forrest Fire Films Youtube channel here to see some more of the awesome Lego animations they've done.