Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Considered one of the top 5 cash game players in the world, Patrick Antonius knows a thing or two about bluffing and picking off bluffs. An expert sniper, Antonius has been known to make insane calls in huge pots with almost nothing. This is the type of play which separates poker players from poker legends. Most people can make a decent bluff, but calling off a huge chunk of your stack with garbage requires precision, timing, and complete knowledge of how your target moves. It also requires balls the size of Finland. Luckily, thats where Patrick Antonius is from. Sick, sick call.
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Saturday, April 25, 2009
Friday, April 24, 2009
Thursday, April 23, 2009
Battlefield 1943 is built on the framework of DICE's 2002 epic masterpiece, Battlefield 1942. This was the first massively multiplayer military game that really captured all the elements of WWII combat and blended them all together in a seamless online package. You had 64 person dedicated servers, tanks, jeeps, attack planes, bombers, AA guns, parachutes, submarines, destroyers, battleships, planes launching off aircraft carriers - everything. It was, and still is to this day, amazing. It blew us away and we were never, ever the same.
Can Battlefield 1943 have this paradigm shifting effect on the gaming landscape? It seems highly unlikely. The scope of the game seems to have been toned down, the maps are smaller and there wont be as many people running around, not as many mid air collisions which fall on top of the enemy jeep which was about to run you over (yes that actually happened to me in 1942). OK, so we know it wont be as epic. But will it be fun? I think its highly likely, barring some design catastrophe, it will be great fun, and I will almost certainly be buying it. See you on Wake Island this summer.
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Monday, April 20, 2009
The US Government, financed by taxpayer money, wastes billions of dollars every year on The War on Drugs, which has been documented as a complete and utter failure. The price of illegal drugs, relative to the strength of the dollar, has only gone down, the availability is the same as it was 25 years ago, and quality has gone up. What Americans need to do now is acknowledge that The War on Drugs is a total failure and find a way to extract ourselves from it as quickly as possible.
Tobacco, which is by far the most lethal recreational drug available, and kills more people each year than all illegal drugs, drunk driving, and homicide combined, is taxed and regulated by the US government. For drugs like marijuana, cocaine and ecstasy, which are far less harmful to society, to be criminalized reflects a total ignorance on the part of Americans as to what the actual impact of illegal drugs is. Most of the violence surrounding the illegal drug trade is a reflection of its illegal status: you dont see executives from Phillip Morris or Pfizer doing drive bys on their rivals.
America, wake up. We are wasting billions and billions of dollars on a Drug War which cannot be won. Its impossible, and the past 25 years of failure have proven that conclusively. Those are billions of dollars which Americans desperately need right now. When you combine the billions we would save in interdiction costs, incarceration, and aid to foreign countries like Columbia and Mexico, and add that number to how much the government would take in if illegal drugs were taxed and regulated like tobacco and alcohol, the net gain would be astronomical.
Despite the country being in a depression the scale of which nobody has seen in several generations, the market for illegal drugs is as profitable today as it has ever been. Marijuana growers in California posted a record haul in 2008, generating billions of dollars in cash - more money than was made on any other agricultural product in the state. The cocaine and heroin cartels in Mexico essentially control the government and all of its law enforcement divisions. Americans want to get high, and they are not going to stop anytime soon. While other entire industries collapse in on themselves, the illegal drug trade is flourishing as well as it ever has. If there is one major industry in the world that is not in need of a bailout, it is the illegal drug trade in the United States of America.
How America Lost The War on Drugs
Budgetary Implications of Marijauna Prohibition
Mexico: The Making of a Narco State
Sunday, April 19, 2009
Saturday, April 18, 2009
Friday, April 17, 2009
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Bluffing has nothing to do with what you have. You could be bluffing with 7-2 offsuit or pocket aces. Its all about what your opponent has, and more importantly what he doesnt have, given the texure of the board, the betting sequence, and the stack sizes. Nobody in poker is better at putting all these factors together to make a huge play at the right time than Phil Ivey. This is why he is the best.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
So during some downtime from a poker session I decided to do a Contra run. The plan was to beat the game without continuing - old school 1CC style. I knew I could do it because I remember beating it on one credit as a kid, but then again I remember beating Kid Icarus and TMNT and Ninja Gaiden 1,2, and 3 for NES, and those games kick my ass these days. Finally doing it took me 3 weeks of trying 4-5 times a night. You do the math: this game is tough.
Well, lets just say I had a good day for a 32 year old man because I made it all the way to the Energy Zone without losing a single life. That was by far my best start ever, and although the ridiculously tough Energy Zone got sketchy with 2 lives lost, I recovered and stormed into the Alien's Lair like a man possessed. I blasted the Mother Alien and started the game's brutal second loop, making it all the way to the Snow Field before losing my last life with a final score of 805,000. I didnt beat the game in under 12 minutes like the guy in the video above, but I wasnt far behind that time, probably 13-14 minutes. I had the spread gun, a turbo controller, and I wasnt taking any prisoners.
It really strikes me how Contra was the Gears of War for the NES. Big bad ass dudes with machine guns invading the Alien Base to blow it all up and save humanity. And you could play the whole thing coop, which of course was a huge draw then as it is today. While its hard if not impossible to say which is the "best" overall NES game ever, Contra really holds up with the best of them 22 years later. It is quite short (see the speed run above), with furiously intense pacing and the perfect difficulty curve - finishing this game on one credit, after trying dozens of times, really felt like an accomplishment. The 805K was just the icing on the cake for one of my proudest moments as a retrogamer. Next up? Beating Mike Tyson. One time! I mean holy crap, he makes the Mother Alien look like Mother Teresa.
Monday, April 13, 2009
Sunday, April 12, 2009
Virtua Tennis 2009 - Real Life V Gameplay - Funny home videos are a click awaySo I guess there isnt as much diving in VT2K9 as VT3, where a Roddick vs Blake match looked like bellyflop compeition. Thats fine with me, as long as Hewitt & Nadal are still two best defenders in the game.
Saturday, April 11, 2009
Friday, April 10, 2009
Seat 1: fligan ($306.70)
Seat 2: TotallyWired ($198.95)
Seat 3: nemesisalmighty ($81.30)
Seat 5: mmateo1 ($100)
Seat 7: ooo chronic ooo ($381.15)
Seat 8: RoundersClub ($284.60)
Seat 9: pungster ($161.15)
RoundersClub posts the small blind of $1
pungster posts the big blind of $2
toona is awesom sits down
mmateo1 posts $2
The button is in seat #7
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to ooo chronic ooo [9d 9s]
nemesisalmighty raises to $4
mmateo1 adds $2
toona is awesom adds $80
ooo chronic ooo has 15 seconds left to act
ooo chronic ooo raises to $17
nemesisalmighty calls $13
*** FLOP *** [2d 3h 9c]
ooo chronic ooo checks
*** TURN *** [2d 3h 9c] [4d]
nemesisalmighty bets $16
ooo chronic ooo raises to $32
nemesisalmighty raises to $48
ooo chronic ooo raises to $64
nemesisalmighty calls $16
*** RIVER *** [2d 3h 9c 4d] [6c]
nemesisalmighty bets $0.30, and is all in
ooo chronic ooo calls $0.30
*** SHOW DOWN ***
nemesisalmighty shows [Kc Td] King Ten high
ooo chronic ooo shows [9d 9s] three of a kind, Nines
ooo chronic ooo wins the pot ($164.60) with three of a kind, Nines
nemesisalmighty adds $40
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot $167.60 | Rake $3
Board: [2d 3h 9c 4d 6c]
Seat 1: fligan didn't bet (folded)
Seat 2: TotallyWired didn't bet (folded)
Seat 3: nemesisalmighty showed [Kc Td] and lost with King Ten high
Seat 5: mmateo1 folded before the Flop
Seat 7: ooo chronic ooo (button) showed [9d 9s] and won ($164.60) with three of a kind, Nines
Seat 8: RoundersClub (small blind) folded before the Flop
Seat 9: pungster (big blind) folded before the Flop
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
"We had to walk uphill to school both ways back in the day I tell you! Both ways!"
Monday, April 6, 2009
The Yankees last meaningful game was played August 26th, 2008. That was 7 months ago. To say that it was a long offseason doesnt really do it justice. The Yankees had been playing meaningful baseball well into October for over 12 years before 2008. For the season to end so abruptly in August, without a trip to the postseason, was a huge disappointment to say the least. The winter months saw the Yankees build a new stadium, massively upgrade their starting rotation, add speed and power to the lineup, and improve their outfield defense, while their archrival, The Boston Red Sox, fumbled in their attempts to replace the irreplaceable Manny Ramirez. All things considered, Im very optimistic going into the 2009 season.
Im going to go on the record and say the Yankees are going to win 100 games this year, and in convincing fashion. Here are the key factors:
A) The best starting 5 in baseball: CC Sabbathia, AJ Burnett, Chien Ming Wang, Andy Pettite, and Joba Chamberlain. They all have to perform, and they all have to stay healthy.
B) Arod - he is still the best player in the game, even though during the offseason he admitted to juicing while with Texas, and had hip surgery in March. Can he overcome these mental and physical obstacles to keep his spot as top dog when he returns to the lineup in May?
C) Mo - Mariano River is the greatest reliever in the history of baseball, but hes not getting any younger. He turned 39 this past November, so we have to expect to finally see some sort of decline set in soon. But, people have been saying that about Mo for the past 5 years, and every year he has proven them all wrong. History, statistics, age - those things just cant be applied to Mo. Hes always been different, and always will be.
D) Posada - Coming off shoulder surgery, at the ripe age of 37 (ancient for a catcher), who knows what to expect from the veteran Clipper catcher. He hit .338 with 20 homers and 90 RBIs in 2007, an epic year by any standards. If he stays healthy and doesnt spend too much time behind the plate, he could have another couple of solid years left.
E) The Kids - Cano, Melky, Gardner - these guys have to step it up this year. After a heated competition for the starting center fielder job in spring training, Gardner won it by a nose. Look for him to have a hot start, or be riding the bench by June.
Saturday, April 4, 2009
Friday, April 3, 2009
Thursday, April 2, 2009
Its a lot of name dropping and not much gameplay in the video, however it appears that the developers hearts are in the right place and this will not be a rushed job but rather a polished, carefully executed effort. I really hope the game is great and goes on to be successful, because it can help further revive retro 2D gaming for the masses and all the great gameplay ideas that go with it.