Posts Tagged ‘video games’

Tony Hawk and His Robot Skateboard Are Eroding Our Family Values

November 18, 2009


You got metal fever boy

Famous Birdman Tony Hawk is in the news again. He has helped to invent a a robot skateboard that you may manipulate with your feet and body, simulating certain acts. It’s for a video game but as with all things robotic the device opens a moral Pandora’s box that taps into man’s darkest urges and wants. Because he is backing it as a product Tony Hawk describes the device in fairly sterile terms, like so:

“This is a whole new direction. I don’t even like to compare because this is a full-body experience that you are controlling through standing on a board, and we made the gameplay completely different.”

At Boil the Ocean, defender of Human values, we cast a jaundiced eye upon robot pleasure machines of all shapes, even if it is in the comely form of promoting boardsport. The truth is that these devices wreck homes. Read if you will from this account of how one such so-called “exercise board” poisoned an American couple against each other.

Mrs. Levy lay prone on the motorized exercising board, its several sections prodding her ample body gently, nudging and kneading her soft, white flesh like a loving baker. Winding her arms under the table, she held it tightly.

“Oh,” she moaned softly and happily, nibbling on the section beneath her face.

“Turn that thing off,” her husband’s voice said somewhere behind her.

“What?” Mrs. Levy raised her head and looked dreamily around. “What are you doing here? I thought you were staying in town for the races.”

“I changed my mind, if it’s okay with you.”

“Sure, it’s okay with me. Do whatever you want. Don’t let me tell you what to do. Have yourself a ball. See if I care.”

“Pardon me. I’m sorry I tore you away from the board.”

“Let’s leave the board out of this, if you don’t mind.”

“Oh, I’m sorry I insulted it.”

“Just leave my board out of it. That’s all I said. I’m trying to be nice. I don’t start the arguments around here.”

“Turn the damn thing on again and shut up. I’m going to take a shower.”

Tony Hawk has sold literally hundreds of video games to the youth, and now he has teamed with robots to corrupt values in a way that could also dent the skateboard industry. If people favor robot board simulations there will be no market for real skateboards, and the culture will collapse in on itself similar to what happened with kayaking down mountainsides. It’s only a warning but this could become real for everyone.

Video Games Killed The Video Star… Or Something…

January 26, 2009

Every now and again, I’m visited with the pleasant and usually unexpected revelation that there are people in this world that A. have free time on their hands, B. have less pressing matters on which to spend said time, and C. are possibly bigger dorks than I, in a general sense. I know, heaven for-fend. So it is with the cottage industry of recreating skate video parts via EA Skate, known to some as the best skateboard video game since Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2. And, it’s not even classic video parts, I mean, of course there’s Guy Mariano’s “Mouse” section and a whopper of a three-part version of Marc Johnson’s “Fully Flared” closer, but beyond these you’ll find such head-scratching esoterica as Furby’s Berrics clip, Jake Brown’s X-games mega-slam (sans helmet), and a remake of YouTube manual sensation Aaron Kyros’s part.

(On a side note, I would be inclined to say that Aaron Kyros could have been the Soulja Boy Tell’Em of YouTube skate videos, if he would have thought up a name for his manual twirling dance, and made it into a ringtone.)

So as Electronic Arts releases the meticulously titled “Skate 2,” let’s look over a few parts recreated with the original “Skate.”

Antwuan Dixon – “Baker 3”

This entry, if not 100% faithful in size and scope trick-wise, is sort of innovative in that it cribs the soundtrack from the video itself in recreating young Antwuan’s Baker debut. The medium drives home the notion that we are looking back on a more innocent time for all of us, with nice use of the Suburbs picnic tables and a suitable stand-in for the Carlsbad gap.
Rating: Three-up

Nick Trapasso – “Suffer the Joy”

This one gets points for dredging the Suburbs for a passable schoolyard setting for Trapasso’s well-loved bigspin blunt line, but couldn’t fit in the wallie – bummer, brah. The minds who put this clip together give into the all-too-strong desire to boost the stair count on some of the hairier rail/gap stuff, but EA Skate’s “loose style” does a decent Trapasso impersonation and they replicated the wonky landing on the kickflip backside 360 pretty good.
Rating: Three-up

Alex Chalmers – “Sorry”

Probably one of the most impressive EA Skate knock-off parts considering how hard it is to do transition shit in this game. With the Faction pop-punk and general contempt shown for gravity, the Canadian fly-out wizard’s little-loved Flip video makes for a convincing update to those old Tony Hawk clips they used to toss you when you completed the game with such-and-such pro. The only thing holding this back from a perfect five rating are the hilariously awkward telephone voice interlude and the fact that the wits behind this couldn’t figure out a way to recreate Renee Renee’s late back foot flip thing. For shame.
Rating: Four-up

Guy Mariano – “Mouse”

It kind of looks like him, if you squint your eyes, and hit yourself over the head with a whiskey bottle for a few hours. Back to the Suburb playgrounds for the bump-to-picnic-table, which is okay minus the lengthy hangtime, and while I can’t think of any particular spot offhand I have to imagine he could have found a better bank-to-ledge to stand in for the Lockwood bench. Plus the awkward rotations on some of the techy ledge stuff. (There are several recreations of Guy Mariano’s “Fully Flared” opus, but if I’m going to bear seven minutes of Band of Horses music and not actually watch Guy Mariano skate, well, I need to get something out of it besides a lengthy blog posting.)
Rating: Two-up

Ronnie Creager – “What If”

Under the video details it says “I needs me a life.” He got the slow-mo kickflip backside tailslide 360 out, when the song stops, so that’s something. User “BriDenSkates” has several other such parts to his name, as well as a couple super cute kitten videos, which as we all know are the lifeblood of YouTube. For this reason I bestow upon this clip a full five-up rating, and encourage BriDenSkates to get to work on “Trilogy” and “20 Shot Sequence.”