Archive for April, 2013

#17 The GaMERCaT

The GaMERCaT. “What is ‘The GaMERCaT?” I pretend to hear some of you ask. Ah, dear followers, The GaMERCaT. How to describe The GaMERCaT? I hear his fur’s insured for a million dollars… One time he clawed me in the face… it was awesome. Oh. Wait. No, that’s the plotline to something else entirely (possibly, no one knows).

The GaMERCaT is a cute and kinda sassy webcomic that I have absolutely no recollection of how I stumbled upon it. But it’s pretty awesome.

Samantha Whitten, GaMERCaT’s creator, has come up with a sometimes-snappish but still likeable character that adores gaming. GaMERCat is relatable to any gender – because gaming, my friends, is not for any specific gender. Everyone can enjoy it. Even cats, with no opposable thumbs (yet, they may evolve sooner or later).

The great thing about these comics is that you don’t even need to have played every game Whitten references in order to enjoy the artwork and the storylines. In fact, really, you don’t even need to have played any game, though it does give you a little bit of a warm, smug feeling when you can nod your head along because you too have been there, rolling around on the DDR mat because your feet aren’t as co-ordinated as your thumbs.

GaMERCaT’s humour is just so easy to slip into; he’s almost like the black cat version of ourselves (or at least, myself. I find myself chuckling along because some of the responses just feel so familiar). It’s not over the top, nor is it too subtle. It’s just right in that it can be appreciated by almost everyone.

Though I don’t recall how I found this webcomic, I do remember expecting it to be something along the lines of Scott Ramsoomair’s VG Cats. And, yeah, okay, it kind of is a little. But the characters are distinctly different, the artistic approach just as good-looking but still very much Whitten’s own*. Let’s face it though, one can never have enough gaming kitties on the internet. Or cats in general (I Can Has Cheezburger, anyone?).

“Okay,” I hear you say now. “So it’s a cute cat on the internet, so what? Plenty of people can scribble one of those up in a jiffy.” Ahh. Well, that’s where Samantha Whitten has one up on the rest of us. Her comic based on the game Journey (that really interesting, quirky game that I only actually discovered a couple of months ago) has been featured in the official The Art of Journey book, in the fan-art segment. That’s pretty cool, you have to admit.

At the moment, Whitten is considering putting GaMERCaT into print. Like several other webcomics I read, this will probably involve using Kickstarter to help fund the project. If you check out the website and enjoy GaMERCaT as much as I do, you can keep an eye on the updates posted with each new comic and see how the project gets along. Definitely check it out though, if you’re into gaming and/or kitties. Who doesn’t love kitties (except maybe those with allergies)?

 

 

 
*This is not me saying Whitten has read or been inspired by VG Cats (because I just don’t know that, and she states herself that GaMERCat was inspired and modelled on her very own cat). It’s just me pointing out similarities in content.

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#16 Dance Dance Dance – Haruki Murakami

ddd

Haruki Murakami… Pretty sure you guys know I’m a big fan of his writing already; idiosyncratic prose where no word is unnecessary, sentences and story lines that leave you disjointed at the end of the chapter. I have to admit, after reading Sputnik Sweetheart, I was a little disappointed, so I avoided picking up his books again. It’s probably my least favourite of his that I’ve read so far, and for some reason that prejudice prevented me from picking up old favourites like Kafka on the Shore because I just couldn’t get back into reading them.

Dance Dance Dance changed all that.

This. This is a book I can quite easily fall in love with. It is deceptively dark and sinister, something you only realise as the novel peaks and falls. The unnamed narrator is as rich and interesting a character as After Dark‘s Takahashi; there is something charismatic about their plainness. Murakami’s female characters are often striking – they have a strangely attractive physical feature or mental lure to them, whilst the men are usually without these particular characterisations.

I don’t want to go into too much depth about the plot because the whole ‘spoiler alert’ system sometimes grates on my nerves and I don’t know how you guys will perceive that. Basics of the basic, a commercial journalist sets out to find someone who he thinks is crying for him and ends up on a journey looking for an ex-girlfriend with beautiful ears, befriending an old high-school friend turned popular actor and a snappish psychic 13 year old.

Apparently this is the final in a trilogy (preceded by Pinabll, 1973 and A Wild Sheep Chase); I would have picked up copies if my local bookstore stocked more than the keystones of Murakami (it’s a tiny, tiny place. The local McDonalds and chip shop are actually bigger than the bookstore…). Maybe next time!

Bare bones

Bare bones

Above is a link to the latest in my collection of blogs… (not including separationdrip here, I currently try to manage about three, though fortunately they’re not entirely serious endeavours, though posting updates to keep others in the loop is sometimes surprisingly draining).

I’ve never really posted my poetry before (save an early draft here on separationdrip a few months ago), but I figured I’d risk it! I’m only putting the bare bones up for now, the skeletal first drafts. Maybe I’ll flesh them out later when uni isn’t driving me to insomnia, or add some of my poetry portfolio drafts (usually in their fourth or fifth rewrite) once the assignment deadline is gone – because who wants to get in trouble for self-plagiarising?

But yes, there in the link lies the foundation blocks for some of my recent poetic adventures…

EDIT: WordPress didn’t put the link in correctly, so here it is -> click