Red Dawn, 4/5, would pay to watch again.

This movie was great. The only problem is that it left me wanting more. We are up to our noses in shitty entertainment, lawyer show after lawyer show, doctor show, crime show, cop show, zombie show, etc. Sure some of it is amazing, good acting, production quality, music, but the settings are all the same. The most recent general story setting has been the "Zombie" one, and I'm sure we are all tired of that. 

Red dawn is one of two films, (the other being something called "Red Dawn") that have the setting "Your home nation invaded, what do?" And I loved it. We have so many shows about preppers and how awesome our military is, we are ready for this setting.


To really enjoy the film, you need to remember that the opening montage of the movie, the one that explains the state of the world that caused this new Red Dawn, does not explain everything. It says something along the lines of China becoming a superpower, and gathering regional allies, to include Russia and North Korea, (and possibly others). But thankfully it leaves very little answered.

If you know anything about China, Russia, and North Korea, you know that them working together in the capacity required for this movie, is highly unlikely. North Korea hates international aid, and China and Russia were set against each other to weaken the second world during the cold war. Being a highly unlikely alliance, only reinforced the setting.

When NK forces started to appear, with new tools, fancy tanks, and nourished soldiers, the first thought that came to my mind was not, “This is stupidly unlikely.” It was, “My god, what could have happened to make them do this?” What sort of dirt, blackmail, or coercion could have brought NK into this new Red Coalition? Wearing and using equipment that they obviously could not have made themselves. The thought lingered in my mind for some time as I enjoyed the combat scenes.

Later in the film, it became obvious. In an iconic line, (which I believe was lifted directly from the old film), “They don't want to be here,”
was the feeling conveyed. When the character spoke, he was talking about the normal, boots on ground grunt. When I heard it, I thought to myself, “Who DOES want to be here? How high up the chain of command does this go?” It became obvious, NK did not WANT to be here, they were just another pawn in China's game. They had shiny new toys, and in my mind every single one of them was emblazoned with “made in China.”

Looking for these deeper secrets made the film far more interesting, but unfortunately they made the setting far more interesting than the film. It was said that North Korea was only tasked with occupying the NW states of the USA, with other nations tasked with other sections of the US. That moment kind of killed it for me, up until then I was focused and following the Wolverines of Spokane, but those lines broke a seal and had me thinking... “Yeah, there is a WHOLE OTHER WORLD out there, WTF IS GOING ON THERE?!” Sure, the film was meant to follow the Wolverines, and by only showing their local view, convey the feeling of being cut off from the outside world.

That's not the crap I want though.
1 hour and 54 minutes is not enough time for this world.
I want some grade A+ series from this shit!

Think about how much could be covered! Instead of one lone resistance group, we could be presented with the whole smörgåsbord of American culture. The Wolverines In Spokane and the military families at Fort Lewis, fighting to hold off an enemy and disbelief;
the resistance in california, easily dominating the disarmed population of the inner city, but struggling with rural resistance; the humid death swamps of Louisiana, full of Vietnam Veterans waiting for revenge (bonus points if Vietnam is tasked with Louisiana and Mississippi); The East coast, bombed into submission because of our massive military presence there; and the Michigan Militia, who was actually in a training exercise for just such an event when it happened. The scope does not end there, there could be drama in other countries, Germany, Great Britain, shit, what is happening in the middle east?!

The potential does not even stop with the combat on the ground. The dialogue of the national leaders would be good too, and act as a calm, yet suspenseful juxtaposition that all dark war tales must have. You could have some state governors, struggling to gather the shreds of their national guard and state militias. The inept President of the United States that allowed this to happen, or did not do enough to prevent it, perhaps he just managed to pull out all US foreign troop deployments, and just weeks ago signed a bill that cut military spending to a fourth of it's previous amount. Not to be limited to our side of the pond, the President of Russia, North Korea, and whoever else, all struggling as their nations are practically the lap dogs of this new Chinese mastermind.

The ideas for epic moments practically write themselves.

Imagine the freedom fighter, who learns some dark secret that seems to justify this invasion.

Imagine the same guy, who learns that the inept president has forces set to knock out the disruptor field long enough for him to launch the nukes. In an attempt to stop the end of the world they need to break into an active nuclear silo to access the launch network, and do what they can to jam it. Or otherwise attack their own nation to prevent some greater evil.

Imagine deep within a bunker in China, an old man hunches over a war table, talking to his subordinates. Once everyone leaves a young and noble looking officer walks up to the old man, the Premier of China...
The conversation drags on about the planning, and in the heat of conversation the your officer says, “Would you have us call you Emperor? Would you have us kneel and revere you as a god?!”

To which the Premier replies, in his old gravely voice, as he plops into his chair, “Kneel.”

So yeah,
Red Dawn, 4/5, would pay to watch again.


But I never forgot that it was all free.

I remember when I first switched to Linux. My incredibly powerful gaming laptop was torn asunder by Iranian computer viruses and spyware. A friend had mentioned linux, and I had an Ubuntu 8.10 CD lying around, so I popped it in.

Installing was simple enough, just keep clicking "next" on the screen, and other minor clicking. Nearing the end of installation it asked for an internet connection... I was in Iraq at the time, and to log onto the internet I needed to open a browser and put in some data, so I clicked past it. A few moments later, I discovered the horrible truth... my laptop's networking chip was part of the graphics chipset, and the Ubuntu CD did not come with Nvidia drivers. Put plainly, to get my computer on the internet, I needed the internet.

For months I hassled with my laptop, fiddling with settings, trying to bypass the requirements. I could not download games, programs, or browse online. My nice and expensive gaming laptop was reduced to a typewriter... except I could not get printer drivers either... Many months later, I took a pass (short vacation) to Qatar, and, hoping to find some wired internet there (the Iranians I got the internet from in Iraq had a login system that did not work with linux even if I plugged directly in, they fixed this eventually).

Sitting in Qatar at one of the tables I pulled out my laptop to play some simple game that came with it, like minesweeper, or draw a photo, I can't remember. It was never super amazing anyway. My laptop has a 16-17 inch screen and was displaying at 800x600, the highest it could go. I had gotten used to it... But today, for some reason it connected to the internet wirelessly. Did the router there use some other frequency that the base drivers could use? Did I accidentally change some setting? I have no idea, but I still could not log into their paid internet thing, though this time it was because I did not waste the money on a prepaid internet card, when my internet did not work.

That day I found out something beautiful...

Paid internet services don't block the ports used for updates... and all of the software downloads are processed though the same ports.

Joy, I had never felt such joy.

For hours, perhaps the whole night, my computer downloaded updates. I did not know at the time that I could get games, the software catalog had never downloaded. And the whole time I sat there watching in 800x600 as the download bar grew, and the programs were installed in the terminal. It was the first time I saw a download speed get up to 2 megabytes a second, I did not even know things could go that fast.

Of course it needed to be restarted, I don't think you can triple the data on your hard drive and not need a restart, but before I would I searched through the software, downloaded Wine, The Battle For Wesnoth, every other game I could find! Video codecs, things to play DVDs, EVERYTHING! It was an orgy of installation.

When I restarted my computer, the true glory of the open source world exploded onto my screen. I had forgotten that my computer screen was the highest definition on the market, I had forgotten that draw speeds could go faster than you could see. I had forgotten about the internet, and I had forgotten about games...
But I never forgot that it was all free.



 This was originally a comment on The Truth About Guns post Ambienistas Rejoice! 3-Gun Nation Series Returns to the Internet, but it ran a little too long for the comment box... so I put it here. Please check out TTAG, I really hate leaving a comment there directing them here... :<

I don't think 3 gun will ever be as popular as football. In general the popularity of a sport is directly related to it's cost of entry. The worlds most popular sport, actual football (the one where they use their feet...) is popular because all you need to play is a single ball. Since everyone can play it, everyone has a basic understanding of the rules, which are themselves simple, just one sentence "Kick the ball into the other team's goal" sums up the worlds most popular sport.

Mind you things like Nascar are popular, but have a high cost of entry. The thing here is again, the rules are very simple to understand, win a race, everyone knows what a race is, but it is also related to a car, which nearly everyone in the US has a basic understanding.

Also these are team sports (back to football/field games), where people work together to outmaneuver their foe. Generally (exception baseball) a large portion of the team competes at the same time, and against another team.

Something like this three gun competition has a high level of entry, and the technology it uses is generally obscure, reducing the fanbase. The teams do not work together at the same time, and they are only engaged in indirect competition, do direct team vs team play (understandable though, while I would like to be shot by some of those ladies I doubt I would draw a large crowd).

As a final note we have the marketing aspect of the game. Here I see team FNH, and others dotted with sponsors, not "The Seattle Seahawks" or "The Oakland Raiders." Games like football are more than just things we attend to watch advertisements, we go to pit our cities against each other and see who is the best, like nationalism on a smaller, less violent scale.

If you wanted to make a popular sport you would need to do the following:
1- Take... say 15 prominent cities and have them establish teams for this "newsport"
2- Move the advertisement and sponsorship out of the limelight to let the cities shine, the Seattle Spartans (we do have a Mt. Olympus) and Oakland Operators sound WAY better than "Team Foreign country based military arms manufacturer." Sport is an analogue for cities to fight, we hate each other you see.
3- Lower the barrier to entry. Have team armories and open drafts so people don't need to bring their own guns.
4- Yes, point 4 and now we address the actual game. You need a game that directly pits one team versus another, in a fast paced game that involves a lot of movement, stamina, and chances to do improbable feats of skill.
5- Fill airtime. Require helmet cameras, and a gun camera, and have commentators, like some cool people. FPS Russia and R Lee Ermey.

If it was me, I would have a game go like this, there is a live fire preliminary, where the teams compete in shoothouses and such, do some long range shooting, etc. Then for the final round have a simunition battle of capture the flag, have ten players active on the field, and when they are hit they need to be carried off by the next in line to deploy, who is invulnerable while they retrieve their teammate, then the retriever replaces the fallen teammate, slowly rotating through the whole team. It would be fast paced, allow for various physical and lucky feats, and dynamic, which is something the 3GN is lacking. I am sure to a seasoned shooter the little differences are readily apparent, but the visual drama is lost on a newbie. This would have people running, shooting, falling, being carried, all somewhat relatable to a wider audience.

That was long, sleep time is now.


Testing Testing, 1,1,2,3,5

Alright, so I am a total nerd, I watch science fiction, science fantasy, I play D&D, Pathfinder, GURPS, Shadowrun, and occasionally I might write a fanfiction...

But right now I am figuring out this "blog" thing...


Testing Testing, 1,1,2,3,5


I should really be doing

Sorry I have not updated in awhile, I know I said I would update every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, but I have so much homework...

...I should really be doing.


Remarkable Progress Indeed

Today I woke up at 8. Nothing special for you "normies" I am sure, but to me, waking up at a "normal" hour is something to be cherished. As I have stated before I have some new rules regarding my conduct... IN BED!

Honestly now, ever since I stopped surfing the web in bed... well it's not like the sleep is any better, but now I don't lie in bed for 4 hours before falling asleep.

Remarkable progress indeed.