Bim

Socially adjusted nerd.

Viy: Spirits of Evil

Halloween is once again upon us, and like we humans do every year, we try to find things to scare us because it's fun, I guess. We recently found out about something that might just do the trick for you guys this year, especially for you horror flick aficionado-types. 

Back in 1967, the movie Viy came out in theaters in Russia. It's a trip. You can watch the whole thing on YouTube, oddly enough. That, and the novel by Nikolai Gogol, would become the bases of the 2014 movie Viy: Spirits of Evil. Viy: Spirits of Evil are coming to theaters in the Manila on October 22, 2014.

It stars Jason Flemyng (Azazel in X-Men: First Class and Primus in Stardust) and Charles Dance (Tywin Lannister in Game of Thrones). 

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Spider-Man Unlimited

I'm not the biggest mobile gamer around, but every time a Marvel game pops up, my interest is immediately piqued even if it is on a platform that only a few game types favor. So when I was told of a standalone Spider-Man game not based off any cartoon or movie franchise, my face lit up. Ooh, maybe it'll half motion controls for swinging. Mobile phones have gotten powerful enough to accommodate some pretty complex gameplay mechanics.

The game is called Spider-Man Unlimited, developed and published by Gameloft. 

What is it?

It's a Temple Run-type game, with a few additional mechanics that make it feel like a Spidey game somewhat and to innovate past what other Temple Run-type games have done in the past. The game feel a little more accessible to kids. It has a less frantic pace, which makes it more kid-friendly and probably a little less addictive to adults. Spider-Man Unlimited is actually quite similar to another Temple Run-style game Gameloft also developed, Despicable Me: Minion Rush. Having played a decent amount of both games, I would probably say Minion Rush is a little more enjoyable because of the way the tracks are laid out.

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Steam Prices in PHP

Woke up this morning to a very surprising email. 

Great! So prices on Steam will now display in Php instead of the usual USD if you have a Philippine address. What does that really mean, though? Just a couple things.

Not Cheaper

Prices will be the same. Whatever they charge for games now will essentially be the same price they'll be charging you after the conversion. A $60 game will be worth Php 2,637 given today's current exchange rate. However, exchange rates do fluctuate. There will be days when that $60 game will only cost you Php 2,618 and and days when it'll go for Php 2,715 or so. And that is totally the same thing if you buy it with your credit card depending on the exchange rate that day. The Php price display will only really help doing the conversions for you. That way, it'll be easier for you to tell when you should pull the trigger on that game you've been eyeing.

I did some research and it seems that the currency display will change for 11 more countries including Indonesia (Rupiah), Malaysia (Ringgit), and Thailand (Baht). I think New Zealand, too.

Doesn't Solve The Bigger Problem

My initial excitement quickly died down as I realized that this won't solve the real issue. Only 5-7% of Filipinos have credit cards, and if the forums serve as any indication, not all gamers belong to that 5%. With no credit card, you'd be forced to buy those Steam cards from places like Datablitz, and those normally sell for much higher than the actual dollar value of the card thus making the automatic conversion moot.

If you want to take advantage of this new feature on Steam but you're not part of the 5-7%, there are existing ways of getting around the credit card issue. One such way is through mobile provider payment schemes, like SMART Money or GCash. Once you have a SMART Money card, it's just like having a Mastercard credit card, although it's pre-funded. Same goes for GCash. They're much easier to apply for than regular cards and can be used for online purchase. 

Eventually, Bitcoin might be the online currency of choice. And that might be safer than credit cards.

Still Good Though

Regardless of whether it makes it any easier for Pinoy gamers or not, it's definitely a step in the right direction. At least Steam has noticed the market potential in the country. Sony and Microsoft could be following suit.

Superhero Name Spelling Guide

Every time a Spider-Man movie comes out, droves of people are always quick to post Tweets or status updates that say "Spiderman was AWESOME!" To which I want to reply, "Dude, if it it was so awesome, why don't you learn how to spell it right? It's Spider - hyphen - Man." This has been happening since Spider-Man's comic came out, I guess, but due to social media and 2002's Spider-Man movie, it has become way too prominent and I get pissy about it on Facebook every single time.

I think it's high time that stops. To avoid confusion on how to spell superhero names, I've written up a quick little guide right here on GeekOut.ph. 

If you're thinking "why should I care if I misspell Spider-Man again? PFT." Well, first of all, FUCK YOU. Second, words, when used and spelled correctly, have a certain power to them. How would you like it if someone misspelled your name? And lastly, you won't look any more ignorant than you already do by questioning the importance of proper spelling.

1. Hyphenated Characters

Spider-Man

Let's start with the most misspelled one - Spider-Man. Here are the rules - S and M are capitalized, and in between the words "spider" and "man," there is a hyphen. That's really all you have to remember. It isn't rocket science.

Why is Spider-Man spelled the way it's spelled? Stan Lee claims that he put the hyphen in so people wouldn't confuse him with another popular character named Superman, which obviously isn't hyphenated. This was probably a decision they made after Spidey's debut because in Amazing Fantasy #15, which came out in 1962, the word was spelled Spider Man and Spiderman. In Amazing Spider-Man #1, which came out in 1963, it was spelled as Spider-Man. 

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The Amazing Spider-Man 2 Wasn't That Bad

In E3, 2013, Batman: Arkham Origins debuted. It looked fantastic. It looked amazing. The new costume design was shown off, and every Batman fan was gushing with excitement. After the success of Batman: Arkham City and Batman: Arkham Asylum, everyone had high hopes for Batman: Arkham Origins. Everyone thought it was going to be the best Batman game yet.

Come Oct. 25, 2013, Batman: Arkham Origins finally dropped. And every Batman player collectively went "Is this it...?" We all felt disappointment that day. Batman: Arkham Origins was riddled with bugs, had a clunky combat system when compared to the previous two Batman games, and had a tacked on multiplayer mode no one cared about. It had its merits, but if you compare it to its predecessors, it just really fell short. People crapped on Batman: Arkham Origins for a while and everybody hated it, BUT people forget that it isn't a horrible game. It just wasn't as good as people were hoping it to be.

And this is how I feel about The Amazing Spider-Man 2. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is my Batman: Arkham Origins.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is a movie I want to like so badly. And maybe it was because of this desire that I was able to find some elements of it that had merit.

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