July 29th, 2011


Good news/Bad news: Rollerblading

Yesterday was fairly warm (70-75) and i was able to leave work fairly early, so i went straight to the beach and did some rollerblading, That makes the second time this week, yay! Perhaps if i can keep this schedule up for the rest of the summer i can lose the 10-15 pounds i've gained since last year =P

Of course that's going to be somewhat complicated by the fact that while i was out my rollerblades broke =P One of the bolts attaching two parts of the rollerblades snapped, which is the exact same thing that happened to my indoor pair of rollerblades as well. In fact it was the exact same bolt for both of them, the one on the inner side of the left shoe. I guess perhaps i put more strain there than on the other three bolts?

They're still usable, but they feel more unstable this way. I "fixed" the indoor pair by just looping some twine through the bolt hole many multiples of times and then tying it off. I could do the same with my outdoor pair, but i really ought to look into getting them repaired, or possibly even buying a new pair or two. Of course last i checked new pairs of rollerblades cost about $100-$200 each, which is fairly significant. I'd recently been thinking about placing an order with the Ring Lord and starting a chainmail project or two, but i'm not sure if i can afford to do that _and_ replace my rollerblades =P

I'll have to see how much it would cost to repair them and then consider things. Perhaps i could get away with repairing one and replacing the other. The outdoor pair are getting kind of worn in other regards as well. I think one of the reasons that i keep getting blisters on the sides of my heels is that i've started to wear through the padding on the inside.
Games: Consoles (Nintendo)

Bad news/Good news: Video games

So for the small subset of people who care but haven't heard already, Nintendo just announced a huge loss of about $300 million for the first quarter this year. (That would be the period approximately from the start of April to the end of June, for those not up on the strange ways of the financial world.) Because of that they've also downgraded their projected annual profit from a little over $1 billion to around $300 million.

The main reason for this seems to be the poor sales of their new 3DS system. (Wii sales have certainly been down as well, but that was already known and accounted for in the earlier projections, it was the 3DS sales that caught them by surprise.) Some people are blaming the problems associated with the earthquake in japan, some are blaming the high price of the 3DS, some are blaming the lack of a good lineup of launch games, and some are blaming the 3D "gimmick."

The silver lining is that whatever the real problem is, Nintendo has decided it needs to slash the price in order to get stock moving again. On August 12 the 3DS is going to drop in price from $250 to $170.

For those of us who already own one (me, beth_leonard/jon_leonard, anyone else?) as long as you've registered in the eShop before August 12 you will be given 10 free NES games and 10 free GBA games. The NES games will be available to early adopters (or "3DS Ambassadors" as Nintendo is calling them =P) on Sept 1 and will be available for sale to everyone else sometime later. The GBA games will be available to early adopters sometime before the end of year, and will supposedly never be available for sale. (Personally i think that means they're going to be given away through various promotions or be a Club Nintendo reward at some point or something.)

Here's the announcement from Nintendo, which has a few more details, including a partial list of the games.

I think a price cut is a good idea, though i'm a little surprised by the size of this one and how quickly it arrived. I think it might have been a little better if they'd announced a $40 or $50 price cut now, and then waited to announce another $30 or $40 cut right before the Playstation Vita comes out. But perhaps what seems like a quick series of small cuts would give an overall worse impression than one steep cut? I dunno.

Friday Fun Stuff

So for those of you who are children of the 80s, the reboot of Thundercats starts tonight at 8 on the Cartoon Network. Who knows at this point if it's going to be any good, but i'm certainly willing to give it a try. It does look like they fixed the #1 problem i had with the original cartoon. Even back then i realized that trying to save a species with less than a dozen members isn't very practical.

Second, this is a little old but if you haven't seen it yet the trailer for the new Three Musketeers movie looks awesome. Of course i may just think that since before i saw it Topless Robot pointed out that it actually looks quite similar to an (early) Final Fantasy game :)

And finally, i had not heard of "Knights of Badassdom" before seeing this trailer. This looks like one of those movies that _could_ be good, depending on what type the majority of the humor in the movie is. But it does have Peter Dinklage (aka Tyrion in Game of Thrones,) Ryan Kwanten (aka Jason Stackhouse in True Blood) and of course Summer Glau (aka turn in your geek card ;) all of whom have cred in genre media, so i've got some hope for it.

(And yes, i know people are having difficulty with LJ lately, but hopefully you can at least see this, even if you can't comment.)
Cartoons: Thundercats

Thundercats Hooooooo!!!

Okay, i think the new Thundercats series may be the most awesome reboot of an 80s cartoon since, well, ever! (Although i must admit that i haven't actually seen any episodes of My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic yet, which i hear is also an awesome reboot.)

It certainly helps that they're working with the series with one of the largest disparities between awesomeness of the idea and crappiness of the implementation. Even as a kid i could tell that there were problems with the plot of Thundercats, both the overall arc and the quality of the individual episodes. And even as a kid i didn't like Snarf. Obviously looking back on it after "growing up" only makes those flaws stand out even more. (Especially Snarf.)

But humanoid cats with swords and magic powers kicking ass? Basic idea = awesome!
So the new series took that basic idea, and _most_ of the character traits from the original, and redid all the crappy parts. Of course it's hard to say for sure after just the two episode intro, but the plot seems leaps and bounds beyond the old cartoon, and they even manage to skip _most_ badly done cartoon stereotypes. In fact maybe i'll change my mind after a second viewing, but even the cases where they did go with the stereotypes they handled them pretty well. Also, Snarf. He (she?) doesn't talk any more! He(?)'s just a cute little cat that makes cute little cat noises!

Oh yes, and if you still haven't watched the trailer, the animation is awesome. The only thing that's a little weird is Lion-O's new look, but i mostly got over that pretty quickly.

So yeah, i'm pretty darn happy with this. Let's just hope they can keep up the initial promise for awhile longer (and that the show will last long enough for them to demonstrate that.)