Monday, November 16, 2009

Thoughts on the new Prisoner series

The Prisoner was ok, but I found it lacking in terms of the Village itself. In the original series the Village was a pivotal character and took on a life of its own. I can understand that by shrinking the series to 6 hours they have to not include a lot of ideas of the original series, but I think that not fleshing out the Village takes a lot from the show and the ideas that the first series try to focus on. In the first series there were elections, a ruling body, sports and all sorts of strange and odd things. In this new version it seems just a pale backdrop.

As for this idea for Number 2 I am not sure I like it. Number 2 never had family, if the current number 2 failed to convert 6, a new Number 2 was always brought in. The thing that made the original Prisoner series so great was the constant struggle between 6 and the CURRENT Number 2. If 2 failed, he would be ousted by Number 1 and replaced with a new Number 2. The 2's never wanted to fail and that was a great thing about the old show. How could 6 get the Number 2 removed and who would win that battle?

In the new version of the series, 2 has a family and is rather well planted in the Village. Also we have not heard 6 even question who "1" may be which is a little bit strange. Overall with the editing and odd cuts I really did not follow the second episode at all as it tried to be a little too "spooky and mysterious" it seemed to be confusing and not able to tie up lose ends.

So far I give the show  2 1/2 stars and I hope it integrates things a little better or it could end up being a let down. I understand that they do not want to simply recreate the old show but I do feel like they passed up a good chance to really shine by not updating the old classic but making it more streamlined which is the direction I would have gone with it.


Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Prisoner debuts tonight on AMC!

Folks, the PRISONER has been remade on AMC.

…but now it is being remade and they have lined up Gandalf himself to play Number 2.
Though it ran for a mere 17 episodes, the sci-fi spy drama THE PRISONER is one of television’s biggest cult hits. The brainchild of star Patrick McGoohan, the series followed the adventures of No. 6 (McGoohan), a former secret agent who is being held captive in a highly secured village, the location of which remains a mystery throughout the series. This groundbreaking and innovative show reached an unfortunate end as TV bosses got cold feet following low ratings and increasingly strange story lines. But McGoohan himself took control and steered the show to an ending that continues to cause great debate among THE PRISONER’s faithful fans.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Installing the Dragon Age: Origins toolset with Windows 64 bit

A lot of people that purchased the game via Steam are getting the following error when they go to install the toolset:

"SQL Server Setup failed to execute a command for server configuration. The error was [Microsoft] [SQL Native Client] [SQL Server]Incorrect syntax near '='. "

While there is a thread on the Bioware site to fix this it is like reading a post on the WoW forums about nerfing paladins. 6 pages of shit followed by maybe one page of good advice.

Here is what I did for the install to work. Run the setup and it will hang when you go to install MS SQL Server.

Stop what you are doing WHILE THE ERROR is on the screen and point yourself to (Windows Vista 64 bit):

C:Program Files (x86)Steamsteamappscommondragon age originstoolstoolssqlMSSQL.1MSSQLInstallsysdbupg.sql

Edit that with notepad.

Find the line

SELECT @certificate_name = QUOTENAME(@certificate_name, '''')

Replace it with

SELECT @certificate_name = '''' + REPLACE(@certificate_name, '''', '''''') + ''''

Save the file. If you cannot save the file, congrats on running your own operating system as a non administrator. Please uninstall Windows and learn to PC!

Hit the RETRY button.

Now it should run. It is important to leave the error window up as you do this, edit the file save it then hit RETRY. After all is said and done you will get one last error saying it cannot write to C:Program Files (x86)Common FilesBioware.

Simple fix here is go to C:Program Files (x86)Common Files and create the folder Bioware, then hit retry.

A pain in the ass I know but until Bioware fixes this that hack will have to do. The Bioware thread is here:

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Dragon Age: Origins releases today...not sure I care though

Came a time long ago that I was ITCHING to jump into this game. However, as with most titles OTHER than WoW I just do not find myself drawn to it.

The problem is that MMO's have spoiled me to the point where I feel like if I play a single player game I am getting NOTHING accomplished. Instead I feel guilty for not logging into WoW and getting things done on one of my level 80 characters.

So it is that Dragon Age launches today, or should I say is shipped, and people will probably flock to it on the consoles as well as the PC.

Now though I find myself not interested because I just don't have the time to sink into it or get into the mechanics or gameplay when I really just want to log into WoW and get some things done.


IF my characters were considered by myself to be DONE and complete in WoW then maybe I would log in less. Since I am returning to the game after a 7 month layoff and I am way behind the curve I find myself plenty busy with tons of things to do in WoW for its 14.99 subscription rate rather than dumping 50 bucks on a game I would not touch.

I cannot be the only one thinking this right?

Anyway, here are some early thoughts on the game as well as a link to the typical "day of release review" from Gamespot:


Various comments around the web:
Firstly let me say that this is a great game in many ways. Truly I think people will be talking about DA:O for years to come. There's a lot they've done right in this game and the level of polish that comes across is fantastic. I think this game will have a huge fan base and tons of mods coming out.

However let me say something bad about the game.. It's definitely of the modern type of 'RPG on rails' type of game with lots of lengthy dialog sessions. It's an adventure RPG, as Risen was. But I like DA:O's combat far far more than Risen because Risen's was (as long as I played it) just frustrating and unfair and unfun. But know that DA:O uses a dynamic enemy generating system to keep every battle at the same difficulty so you can die in any battle. The pause system is great. I think the combat should be slowed down by 40% or so though, especially at lower levels.

Unlike the great RPG's of the 80's and early 90's, this game has a lot of obligatory dialog and story telling, even more than Risen, I think. In that sense, it isn't an RPG. But the rest of the game is RPG, yes.

Let me say one thing though, I LOVE the look and feel of the user interface. It's so clean, flashy, and has nice sounds. It's not hard to find what you want to find either. The UI doesn't suffer consolitis.

More comments I found:
I received the game yesterday via a pre-order from the EA Store.

I am of the opinion that story telling (good to great story telling) is what differentiates a great RPG from a mediocre one, but again, that is just my own opinion.

Having said that, the linear feel that was alluded to is there. This is no Oblivion. Each area has a canned feel about it, which may not bode well for some.

The Bioware formula is there. If you have played KOTOR, Mass Effect, etc, you know what to expect. A story driven RPG. It is frankly, too early for me to tell if the game will meet the expectations of the gaming community at large. But I am enjoying it, the little I have played it thus far.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Asheron's Call has 5 extra years on WoW

Asheron's Call today celebrates 10 freaking years in service.
As one of the original Massively Multiplayer Online Roleplaying Games (MMORPG), AC is a fully developed world - complete with a deep history, committed community, and compelling ongoing storyline. Turbine will celebrate this major milestone by running live events throughout the day that will bring back some of the most loved (and feared) signature lore characters and villains of its rich 10-year history.


I remember a lot of things about Asheron's Call but I dont remember the actual game mechanics. Instead what I do remember is having FUN in an MMO and exploring and finding trouble to get into with my gaming buddy.

I remember Asheron's Call as not having any zones except for the dungeons which at the time was a mind boggling idea. After all I was knee deep in Everquest 1 at the time and the idea of instances or zone in portals was foreign to me. Everything in EQ1 was cuththroat and wide open and you had to race people to Lower Guk or Sebilis.

I remember the game not having overland zones and thinking it was amazing to be able to get to the top of a mountain and look out over everything and figuring out where I wanted to go to. The only game that has brought this feeling back was Vanguard, but unfortunately that game sucked a boatload of ass.

So it is with fond memories that I look back on Asheron's Call and its pyramid scheme guild organizations and its odd Spell I, Spell II, Spell III descriptions. I look back on having to drop things on the ground to trade to them between my characters, and I used to do so under a bridge so no one would find my things.

I remember some of the creatures and the weird agro radius and fighting along a beach and some cave I would go into to get pelts.

Those were the good old days in MMO gaming before mainstream came around and we were surrounded by the idiots we are today. Back then games were hard and I LIKED IT.

Ok, back to web surfing all of you.

asherons call_qjpreviewth