Monthly Archives: May 2012

Zombies in Fantasy: Diablo (Retrospective)

Standard

I won't mention Diablo III because I haven't played it yet. So stop asking.

It was his SLED. [Spoiler] That’s one of the zombies you fight in Diablo 2.

I like Diablo. And as of my previous article, you know I like Zombies. Not the zombies you see in horror films, although I enjoy those as well. No, I like the undead as staple in fantasy, because let’s face it: zombies would make a brilliant addition to a fantasy setting — hell, they might even be needed. It also suspends disbelief in the air— if you can set fire using incantations, or summon unholy beasts from beyond Space and Time; you most certainly can wake the dead.

The stories of the Undead stretched back as far as every Legend in culture, but the game Dungeons and Dragons was one of several that made the trope popular for the fantasy genre. Zombies, as always, are dark, deadly creatures that will fuck up your day if you let them. They’re also obviously a part of the fantasy genre. So, it would be fitting to insert them in Diablo — a Dark Fantasy series about fighting the forces of hell.

Zombies have always been aligned to the dark side, apparently—in Diablo, you have these Walkers shambling around with their less-skinned brethren, Skeletons, while in Diablo II you have foes that raise the dead. I don’t like the misconception that the raising the dead are necessarily evil—they could be used for good, too. I remember one bad-ass moment in the fifth installment of Percy Jackson wherein the god of the Dead, Hades, sets loose his army of skeletons to aid the Olympians. So it isn’t unheard of that necromancy is necessarily evil—it just lies very deep in Anti-Heroic territory, that we misconceive it to be evil. In short, it isn’t evil all the time.

Unless you want a bone spear tearing through your flesh, and the feeling of anguish as your body explodes, you probably don’t want to mess with this guy.

Which leads us to Diablo II, and the surprisingly-fun-to-use Necromancer.  I downloaded this game the other day, and I find it a lot of fun to play as the Necro, specifically the Summonmancer build. In the said build, my skills usually revolved around skeleton mastery and summoning thralls to fight for me. Which was totally the reflection of my personality.  (Hehe) And possibly, a stylistic preference.

A usual sight in Diablo 2: Skeletons, armed with scythes, running around your vicinity, killing everyone that isn’t your Friend, while you idly stand around and watch them do their thing, or even participate in the battles yourself. I certainly did that, cleaving other Undead, mutant beasts or demons in my way. Or blowing the crap out of them using my Corpse Explosion spell.

Anyway, I still love fighting the general Undead—there was a part in the second act where you fight these brilliant-looking (and not to mention Menacing) Greater Mummies, Undead that previously grafted animal parts on their bodies so that their powers would double in the Un-life. Their very appearance gives me this sudden feeling of dread, until I kill one, and I realize that if I could down one, I could use the aforementioned corpse explosion spell and blow the others up to bits.

I think Diablo is a very good example of how the Undead can be used for the side of good (or, atleast, it can be used for Anti-Heroic deeds), and still be menacing enough to be a horrifying foe. But that doesn’t make killing them less satisfying.

 

Aiodeus, the Necromancer!

This screencap is from my kick-ass adventures in the land of Sanctuary. My minions (excluding my sellsword) aren’t as outfitted with the state-of-the-art undead weaponry.

Edit: NO, I haven’t played Diablo III yet. Don’t wank about not finding it here, please. This is a retrospective. Diablo and Diablo II fit perfectly, since this is a retrospective article.

Advertisements

It’s Indie Rock n’ Roll for me…

Standard

The Killers say it all.

People think I’m a hipster.

The key word here is think. People think I’m a hipster so much I think I’m a hipster. Or, at the very least, a person with the musical tastes of a hipster. Or indie. Or whatever the hell you can call it. I don’t know why they think I’m part of that subculture, since I don’t have their brilliant fashion sense. Hell, I don’t even have clothes that look the type. But if you strip down the Indie/Hipster to their roots, they are, essentially, people who like Indie Music. Although I’m pretty much  restricted to the Indie Rock genre.

So maybe I’m not a hipster—just a guy with very discriminating taste in music (although I do listen to general rock), who loves Indie Music.

I don’t know. There’s something awesome about the Indie scene; its ‘unconventional’ kind of music. Depending on the song, it gives you this strange, goosebump-like feeling of euphoria, vintage-ness or just a quite different feel to it. Again, I think the best word would be Unconventional.

But I gotta admit that I don’t know much bands from the genre — I just stick with the basics; Bloc Party, Foster the People, the Morning Of, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, that kind of stuff.  Then again, there’s always something for everyone.

I think my Favorite has to be Mumm-ra and their song, She’s Got You High. Sadly, they broke up.

And now I weep.

Sometimes I don’t understand what constitutes as ‘Indie’. I hear people defining ‘Indie’ as being in an Independent Label, but I digress. Yes, a song on an Independent Label is indie, but, paradoxically, it is not indie.

A song is Indie, in the sense that the style is unconventional, experimental, even, such that there’s this certain vibe in it that makes you feel a certain kind of emotion through these techniques.

In retrospect, I think it’s pretty hard to analyze Indie Music, hell, Music itself, without being pretentious or having a wide knowledge of notes and whatnot. Then again, I am the listener, and I listen to music.My kind's your kind, oh stay the same!

What I feel about Indie Music is simple:

It’s this Euphoric feeling that can only be taken by a mixture of leads, synthesizers, bass, and a wonderful voice, something that other genres can’t doto me. The Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Maps is a big example of this strange euphoric feeling. It’s something you’d want to play driving in a vintage car with your horn-rimmed glasses and stubble, as the sun started to set.

Edit: Okay scratch that, She’s Got You High isn’t my favorite. It’s Maps by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

Zombies in Fantasy: The White Walkers of HBO’s Game of Thrones

Standard
The White Walkers, strange, terrifying creatures of the North. Eldrich Abominations, or just undead things?

A grimly accurate depiction. It’s like they stole it from my head.
Kidding.

I like zombies. Not because of the benefits of a zombie apocalypse, or the satisfaction of having a morally acceptable cannon fodder and killable monster,  but rather the overall undead appearance, and the metaphor it represents: a literal Walking Death to all it passes.

Yeah, the factors I said before those still matter–you can’t have one undead bastard running around without other undead bastards running around, hence a zombie apocalypse. They’re undead, and as such are probably a menace to the living (duh), so you have to kill them. Or, if you were a Necromancer, you could boss them around the like, because it’s awesome.

In HBO’s Game of Thrones, you’re given this intimidating impression that the White Walkers are just that, or at least their by-products are. Earlier in season one, you see a group of wildlings mercilessly killed.  A girl was left hanging on a tree branch during the encounter. Suffice to say, that girl, that creepy, creepy girl turns too look at the screen.

I won’t mention the moments afterwards, but that was horribly chilling (and how fitting! Being in the Wall and all.)

Image

Creepy shit.

 I think how they were elaborated on (the White Walkers, not the wildling girl), were pretty intimidating–raiding cities in the winter and what not, and it was, again, positively chilling to watch it unfold like that.  And the fact that the people they kill reanimate as wights, as if they weren’t deadly enough.

I think in the end the best thing about the white walkers is this impending sense of doom. Winter is Coming, as the Starks say, and with winter comes the White Walkers, with their undead army of wights.  And the Game of Thrones being played in King’s Landing would be all for naught, because Winter is coming.

A word on the things you’ll see in this Blog.

Standard

It’s imperative for you to know the things I’m going to write about. First, I’m a very expressive man. Writing gets me going sometimes, and I tend to ramble on and on and on about things. But since this is wordpress and not twitter, I promise I’ll keep things nice and sweet.

Okay!

So,  anyways,  I am a person who enjoys various forms of entertainment —whether books or music, television or video games, I enjoy them like the civilized fan that I am, perhaps whining and puling only moderately, and not in ALL CAPS. And because of the enthusiast in me (read: Nerd), I have decided to list down the things I am most likely to write about:

Video Games
Silent Hill
Survival Horror
Fantasy
Stephen King
Neil Gaiman
Scott Pilgrim
Indie Music
Rock Music
Zombies
Horror
H.P. Lovecraft
 Diablo
RPG games
Romance 
The Walking Dead
Game of Thrones

Trust me, that’s just the icing on the top of the cake. I could ramble on about other stuff, too.

Stay in touch, will you?

Hi.

Standard

Hey there. New Blogger here.

I want to get the feel of this place. I’ve been to Tumblr and it feels different and kind of unauthentic compared to ‘this’. Blogging is awesome. What’s sad about it, though, is this strange, soul-sucking pit of loneliness. It only happens when you’re new to a blogging site, so you’re not really popular, but it kinda sucks.

So…Hi there.  

I’d  like to take this opportunity to introduce myself. The name’s Nick, Francis, or Aiodeus. You pick. (I personally like Aiodeus. It’s awesome). I’m a strange creature living in a world of even vaster strangeness. I am, first and foremost, a writer. And a writer is an artist–one who paints a picture with words, sentences, paragraphs. Second, I am a part of a Counter-Culture; a hybrid of conservatism and open-mindedness.

So hello, stranger. Stay awhile and listen.