This Great Evil

Month: December, 2013

End of the year, etc.

Ho ho ho, once again, it’s time for end of the year superlatives season. Because of how my section works, I didn’t get a chance to see all of the films allegedly competitive on these lists. The top films list, then, will be subject to change as I finally get around to watching All is Lost, Her, Inside Llewyn Davis, etc.

Top 10 films:

  1. Leviathan (96)
  2. Inside Llewyn Davis
  3. The Wolf of Wall Street
  4. Post Tenebras Lux
  5. All is Lost
  6. Gravity
  7. Blue is the Warmest Color
  8. The Past
  9. Prince Avalanche
  10. To the Wonder (81)

Top 10 games:

  1. Animal Crossing: New Leaf
  2. Papers, Please
  3. Gunpoint
  4. Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag
  5. Ridiculous Fishing
  6. Capsule
  7. Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon
  8. Device 6
  9. Grand Theft Auto V
  10. Beyond: Two Souls*

* – Not a great game by any usual standard (the writing is appalling, gameplay fundamentally broken), but Beyond: Two Souls is so unabashedly idiotic and bugfuck insane that its mad zeal makes up for a lot of its shortcomings.

Best Picture predictions (for the kids) *updated Jan 12:

  • 12 Years a Slave
  • American Hustle
  • Captain Phillips
  • Dallas Buyers Club
  • Gravity
  • Her
  • Nebraska
  • Saving Mr. Banks
  • Wolf of Wall Street

Pet conspiracy theories

Animal Crossing: New Leaf recently entered my life in the same way a large hurricane enters a Floridian city. As I began to comb through the wreckage of a week’s worth of lost productivity, it occurred to me just how creepy the whole game is.

For whatever reason, Animal Crossing: New Leaf inspires a whole range of conspiracy theories. I’m not quite sure why it is; the game isn’t as Jamestown-esqe as the Wii U/3DS interfaces nor does anything in it suggest that our perspective is actually being fucked with by something sinister. Yet, despite the game’s cheery, sunny disposition, all sorts of lewd, tin-foil hatted ideas fester in the margins.

  • Tom Nook took out the real mayor and planted you because he could manipulate you

The whole Tom Nook is a crook theory is well documented and has persisted through virtually every Animal Crossing. The difference in New Leaf lies in the whole mayor mechanic. You start off the game as some random schlub on a train only to arrive in a town in which everyone thinks you’re the new mayor.

The actual new mayor is nowhere to be found – aside from an incredibly thin and sketchy letter sent to you later in the game – so you end up being the mayor, and you start the game off by being about $30,000 in debt to Nook because he built you a house in the town. Then, as mayor, you have the power to create an ordinance that causes inflation for everything except Nook’s mortgages, while all of the public works projects are contracted through Nook or one of his associates.

Tom Nook, you fucking bastard, where did you hide the body?

  • The game’s soundtrack is actually playing through hidden P.A. speakers throughout your virtual town 24/7

Did you know that whenever the music fades out, it doesn’t come back in at the same place where it cut? The music in the background never actually stops until it hits the end of a loop, at which point it restarts. Did you know that some of your neighbors bob their heads in rhythm with the creepy lounge music soundtrack? And did you know that when I close my eyes, I can still see that hideous pink alligator that lives next door?

  • You’re actually the an Earth ex-patriot on an alien planet

This theory is actually probably the most likely of the bunch. Why all of these anthropomorphized things make up the majority of the world is never pointed out, let alone explained. Beyond the casual implication of inter-special sexual liaisons, you, the game’s only human (aside from other players), are always the outsider. But, there’s virtually no xenophobia; you’re always more of a curiosity than something monstrous, more akin to the way someone gawks at a foreigner.

You can’t be on Earth, since if the animals of Earth actually took over, humans would almost certainly get the Planets of the Apes end of the stick. You can’t have also been the first person to visit this world, as the animals’ curiosity isn’t that extreme. The only answer, then, is that you are just some ex-patriot on this fucked up planet of the fluorescent animals.

Why would you move to a planet where any sexual intercourse could be punishable by most Earth laws? Who knows.