Tuesday, January 29, 2013

PokeChu entry

No. 303
Universal Unicorn

Steel and Ground Type
HT 1′04″
WT 22.7 lbs.
Pokedex Entry: It lived in the snowy mountains approximately 8 hundred million years ago. It will explode with very little stimulus but no one knows why.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Ewoklypse Now

Endor.... shit; I'm still only on Endor... Every time I wake up I think I'm gonna wake up back in the forest. When I was home after the first death star blew up it was worse. I'd wake up and there'd be nothing. I hardly said a word to my wife, until I said "yes" to a divorce. When I was here, I wanted to be there; when I was there, all I could think of was getting back into the forest. I'm here a week now... waiting for a mission... getting softer. Every minute I stay in this room, I get weaker, and every minute Ewoks squat in a bush, they gets stronger. Each time I looked around, the walls moved in a little tighter.
Endor Holocaust
I was going to the worst place in the galaxy and I didn't even know it yet. Weeks away and hundreds of miles up a river that snaked through the war like a main circuit cable plugged straight into Wicket. It was no accident that I got to be the caretaker of Colonel Wicket Wystri Warrick's memory any more than being back in Endor was an accident. There is no way to tell his story without telling my own. And if his story really is a confession, then so is mine.
How many Ewoks had I already killed? There were those six that I knew about for sure. Close enough to blow their last bit of gibberish in my face. But this time, it was an Imperial and an Ewok. That wasn't supposed to make any difference to me, but it did. Shit... charging an Ewok with murder in this place was like handing out speeding tickets in the Pod Racing Circuit. I took the mission. What the hell else was I gonna do? 
Oh man... the bantha dung piled up so fast on Endor, you needed an official Ewok hang glider(TM) to stay above it. "Never get out of the boat." Absolutely goddamn right! Unless you were goin' all the way... Wicket got off the boat. He split from the whole fuckin' program.
Wicket wosw
On the river, I thought that the minute I looked at him, I'd know what to do, but it didn't happen. I was in there with him for days, not under guard; I was free, but he knew I wasn't going anywhere. He knew more about what I was going to do than I did. If the generals back on Hoth could see what I saw, would they still want me to kill him? More than ever, probably. And what would his people back home want if they ever learned just how far from them he'd really gone? He broke from them, and then he broke from himself. I'd never seen an Ewok so broken up and ripped apart.

Another BLCB Video

I know you all have been missing the quality Bill Laimbeer's Combat Basketball content over the past few days, so I am going to keep it rolling with this truly special video.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

I'm in a Gang

All of you know what time of year it is!That's right kids! I did build that deathstar! No, I'm not your father. But seriously guys. It's been awhile since our last fire side chat. So America. How's the cornbread? Have you washed behind your ears? This is not a test. This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test.This is not a test. Anarchy is quite overrated. I like my chaos fairly organized, which is why I hired a day planner for when I overthrow governments. Chloroform is my favorite substance to use when srubbing those hard to reach peasants. #OccupyWalStreet. Don't let Obama get you down! Obama will get you high! Especially the gays! So what are your thoughts? Do you think we should? Post a comment or send me an email at JoeyWaalkesLovesTheCock.com.gov.edu! Or come by my office at Joey Loves the Cock University, where we don't allow the gays jews or the municipality.
Add caption

The Top 10 Gatecrash Cards for Commander - Part 2

 5. Gruul Ragebeast

Gruul Ragebeast

While this card might not be quite as powerful as Warstorm Surge since it can’t deal damage to players and is more vulnerable to destruction, it should be an all-star at picking off all those annoying creatures your opponents have one by one. It starts killing creatures right away when it comes into play and only gets better from there, like an Aura Shards for your creatures. It seems that if this guy remains unanswered for long enough, you should be able to maintain a strong board advantage.

4. Sepulchral Primordial

Sepulchral Primordial

Want an instant army and Grave titan simply doesn’t give you big enough creatures? Sepulchral Primordial is your man/woman/mossy robot thing. Early game this card is a little weak in that you want to make sure there are some solid threats in the graveyard before casting it, so this card will probably be best with grindy generals that use lots of graveyard recursion like Karador. However, in almost any game that goes on long enough without a ton of repeated graveyard disruption, you’ll be happy to cast this guy. Even getting a few value creatures like Solemn Simulacrum or Trinket Mage from each person graveyard will be more than worth it and it only gets more insane from there.

3. Prime Speaker Zegana

Prime Speaker Zegana

Another home run general that rewards you with massive card advantage for playing a bunch of creatures and specifically big ones. With the right deck, she is capable of being both huge card advantage and a legitimate voltron threat. She is a game-ender in her own right, but unlike many generals, if they kill her it really isn’t that bad because you have just reloaded by drawing a bunch of cards. She works best with a creature with 4+ power and gets really crazy with something as big as Terrastodon on the board. Often holding her back to play her later in the game could be an asset since you will avoid the first round of wrath effects that typically take out people’s first time playing their generals. With the huge amount of card advantage she can provide, many decks in these colors trying to win with creatures will be playing Zegana. 

2. Sylvan Primordial

Sylvan Primordial

So let me get this straight: Whereas Terastodon destroys 3 noncreature permanents and gives my opponents 3 elephants, Sylvan Primordial destroys multiple noncreature permanents and lets me search up forests?!? Granted it is a smaller body and 6 power for 7 mana is pretty underwhelming, but the reach is not something to be overlooked, since many generals and many of the best creatures in the format have flying. Green just lost some power with the banning of Primeval Titan, and while this is no Prime Time, it is close. Expect to be seeing this card a lot.

1. Aurelia, the Warleader

Aurelia, the Warleader

Aurelia is a tremendous commander that pushes aggro in commander in all the right ways, encouraging you to play tons of creatures and equipment and attack for tons of damage every turn. Combining her with double strike creatures, creatures with triggers when the attack or deal damage to an opponent, lifelink creatures, or even just big creatures should win you the game quickly. The fact that she has haste and a fairly low mana cost really makes her shine as a general by continually staying aggressive. Outside of that, she fits right in with any aggressive creature strategy and it is great to see red/white, what has often been considered to be the worst color combination in commander, getting some love.

Monday, January 21, 2013

The Top 10 Gatecrash Cards for Commander - Part 1

10. Illusionist’s Bracers

Illusionist’s Bracers

So many commanders will love this card (hello Kiki-Jiki!). While this is less global, this card will often be better than the widely played Ring of Brightheart, since you mostly want to reuse an ability on your general and this doesn’t require the continuous mana investment. Outside of these more spikey applications, I’m sure there are all sorts of interesting Johnny interactions that can be done with this card as well.

9. Luminate Primordial

Luminate Primordial

Luminate Primordial is not the biggest or splashiest of the primordial cycle (and vigilance on this kind of body is pretty lame compared to the others), but she/he/it is a workhorse that will help you maintain control of the board without ever complaining about having to work late without overtime. Like Swords to Plowshares, the life gain is pretty inconsequential as a trade off for being able to exile each of your opponents’ best creatures. Hexproof might often make life a little harder on this guy, but Luminate is in one of the best colors for blink effects and graveyard reanimation and using it multiple times could get out of hand quickly.

8. Giant Adephage

Giant Adephage

I always thought Spawnwrithe was a ton of fun, but hard to get to work with its measly power and toughness. Giant Adephage fixes that problem while still keeping the trample. The great thing about this kind of creature in commander is that all it has to do is get through to one player and it will grow exponentially. Rarely is there a time when each of your opponents can completely block a 7/7 trampler and, given a few attack phases, which sometimes can be a lot to ask, he will overwhelm your opponents. For a good time pair him with Aurelia in a white wine sauce!

7. Crypt Ghast

Crypt Ghast

I’m not sure how powerful extort will be in commander especially on a creature that attracts as much attention as this guy, but over time it could be great in multiples and benefits from the extra mana Crypt Ghast gives you. However, the real reason anyone would play this card is its ability to double your mana in a mono-black deck. There are certainly other effects like this for artifacts (caged sun) and black (cabal coffers), but, while it might not be the most novel card on the list, another one is certainly welcome when it can help you get to a game winning exsanguinate.

6. Hellkite Tyrant

Hellkite Tyrant

I’m not so sure the alternate win condition on this card is feasible, but it would be fun to try and possibly in the right kind of quirky deck it could work with some consistency. However, if you just ignore that part of the card, this card can provide you an insane amount of extra mana and value. Imagine how many signets, darksteel ingots and sol rings you could confiscate with this guy, not even mentioning equipment, artifact creatures or other random artifacts. His biggest downsides are that he does provide your opponents a full turn to react to him and 5 toughness is hardly that impressive, but if you can get even one hit in with this guy you get to keep all those artifacts for the rest of the game. Against many decks, his first few attacks this will ramp you as much as primeval titan would. And who wouldn’t love to rip that lightning greaves or darksteel plate right off that annoying general?

Tune in for the top 5 soon . . .

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Bill Laimbeer's Combat Basketball Video of the Week

To help celebrate Bill Laimbeer's Combat Basketball Week and because I wanted to figure out how to create video footage of SNES games, I present to you this video of me playing a game of violent cyborg basketball.What out for the numerous times I unintentionally throw the ball out of bound, get unjustified back-court violations, jump up for no reason and run into bombs. All this and I couldn't even make a single basket!!

Why I Love Bill Laimbeer’s Combat Basketball

As all of you know from those occasions where I have forced you to play it with me, Bill Laimbeer’s Combat Basketball for SNES is a terrible game. One button is used to both shoot and pass causing you to frequently throw the ball out of bounds when you don’t mean to. The graphics look plain, pale and more of the quality of something from the NES than the SNES. Gameplay is slow and awkward, since even once you have mastered the controls (as much as they could be) often times the best thing to do is simply throw the ball down the court and hope one of your teammates might catch it before it rolls out of bounds. Scoring a basket feels more like luck than an accomplishment. Most egregious of all though, the game is just boring from the sluggish controls to the repetitive game play, once you have played long enough to get over the initial awkwardness of the whole experience, you’ve done everything there is to do.

Although as a child this game was really my only exposure to this idea, for some reason there were numerous sports game made in the 80s and 90s, most notably Super Baseball 2020, where futuristic robots (some of the art makes them look like cyborgs or something, but in game they look like robots) played instead of humans. With little explanation as to why he is the only human hanging out with a bunch of futuristic robots, this game used basketball bad boy Bill Laimbeer to legitimize the combat elements of the game because apparently this was his dream of how basketball should be played or something. Bill Laimbeer was a star player for the Detroit Pistons known essentially for being a dick. He frequently fouled other players and fought with referees. So Bill Laimbeer’s Combat Basketball brings violence, (if you can call robots pushing each other over violence) robots, and celebrity together in a way that I don’t know has ever been done before or since.

My first exposure to this game was playing it at my friend Wes’s house. He got a SNES before we did and along with it a few games Super Mario World, some weird game with the superscope and Bill Laimbeer’s Combat Basketball. Since we only had these handful of games to play and eventually we got bored of Super Mario World, we ended up playing a lot of Bill Laimbeer’s Combat Baskebtall. I was so excited to be playing the SNES during those times and part of my love of this game is relieving that excitement.
However, it goes beyond that too. Much overlooked in its terrible gameplay, Bill Laimbeer’s Combat Basketball had interesting strategic elements in its campaign mode where you started with a team of lousy robots and as you won more games and won more money, you got to upgrade to better robots. This part of the game was fairly simple, but I remember loving this simple combination of strategy (you had to decide what kind of robots to buy-faster ones, good shooters, etc.) with the addictive ability to gain incremental progress towards making your team better. Although it has a ridiculous amount more depth, Out of the Park Baseball, one of my favorite game series of all time, has similar core elements where you are trying to strategically improve your team.

I guess it’s mostly nostalgia, since I generally have little tolerance for such terrible games, but something about this game speaks to me. It’s bad, but with a strangeness all its own. I like the fact that you are playing something so unpolished where you have to figure out how to win despite the glitches and awkwardness. Much like many people like to watch old, campy science fiction movies with silly looking special effects, I like that Bill Laimbeer’s Combat Basketball contains such a bizarre combination of elements and has that same kind of rushed, shoe-strong budget feel of these campy old movies. I see so much potential in all of this quirkiness as if, in some kind of alternate universe where this game was well polished with better graphics, it would have been a cult classic talked about for years to come. Instead it is something more on par with Yor Hunter from the Future. If only you could also play combat basketball with cavemen . . .

Welcome To Bill Laimbeer Theme Week

Welcome to Bill Laimbeer Theme Week!

Who is Bill Laimbeer, you ask?

Here are some Bill Laimbeer game facts.  He is the basketball league's best player.  He scored very many basketballs and therefore is the most valuable draft pick of the year.  Without him the basketballs don't fly as far through the air to score the winning goal.  No goal player could ever score with Bill Laimbeer.  He also was a successful video game manufacturer.

If Bill Laimbeer comes to my house to kick my ass I'm blaming you Phil.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Bill Laimbeer's Combat Basketball

So there has been a disturbing trend of a distinct lack of Bill Laimbeer's Combat Basketball content on our blog recently. So, to fix this, I present you with a glorious first time playthrough . . .

Hopefully this will be the start of a glorious Bill Laimbeer's Combat Basketball theme week!!!