Inside Pulse 12

A Thumb To The Eye Number 22

What a week in Thumbsville. Last Monday and Tuesday I had to take care of my sick girlfriend, followed by a Wednesday and Thursday in my own flu- fuelled agony. Friday and Saturday I got to work, again. And Sunday I went to Oddessy Martial Arts with a buddy of mine so he could by some sais before the Royal Rumble. A strange week by any standard, even mine, but I’m here, sober, and as healthy as I ever manage to be. Unfortunately, this week also saw a tragedy in my little world.

At 3 and a half, my beloved guinea pig, named Verbena and usually just called Guinea Pig, died. As silly as it sounds, this pretty much broke my little heart. So, this week’s installment is entered with a little heavier heart than usual, but I’ll manage. At least there was the Rumble…

Ah, the Rumble, this was surely the thing to bring a pretty crappy week up above the nosedive it had been in so far. It had to be. Lesnar murdering Holly, Michaels and Triple H part 5, and the big fat Rumble match itself, this had to be some entertaining shit. Then I watched the Flair and Batista versus the Dudley Boyz match. What the fuck? Seriously. What the fuck happened? This was barely television quality. Same thing goes for the Noble and Rey, Lesnar and Holly, and Eddie and Chavo matches. The first hour was a very distinct let down. Then came Michaels and Hunter. Wow. Bloody, intense, electric. This was the match I was waiting for. To be honest, I was just amazed to see the sledgehammer sit this one out. In the end, this was a good, but not great match, an unfulfilled promise. I was going to call the whole thing a bust until the Rumble itself went off. It was, aside from ’92, my absolute favorite Rumble match, with only two things dragging it down: the horrendous announcing and the wandering camera. The announcing, like all WWE announcing lately, was pretty much shit. The camera missed a few ejections and went away from the action too many times. There was way too much ramp action. Seriously, what happened to the picture in picture thing they used to do? Well, at least Benoit gets to main event Wrestlemania. Unless someone challenges him for his spot at No Way Out. I have the strangest feeling Jericho’s favor might bring another member of the Canadian Mafia to Raw…

Now, the strange part, even after all of this lame stuff, I’m pretty upbeat about life in general. Why? Well, tomorrow means a kick ass meal at On the Border and the Cure boxed set landing in my grubby little hands. I have big boxes of miniatures coming from across the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. I feel pretty good about everything. Why does that worry me?

Fill My Hole: A Gamer’s Hunger Strike

I know this is a subject I touch on a little more than any other, but I have to. The simple thing is this: my game purchasing has decreased. Drastically. At this point, I have bought ONE game in this calender year: Mario Kart: Double Dash!! and that was just because no one got a copy for me. My next purchase is Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles. After that is Pokemon Colleseum. Beyond PokeColle, I have ZERO games in mind aside from vague ideas about picking up Tales of Symphonia and Baten Katos, assuming they ever come out in the States. At the most, Gran Turismo 4 MIGHT slip in. Might. That leaves me with a list of FIVE games worth purchasing between now and July, assuming Baten Katos and Tales of Symphonia even come out by then. I bought ten games in November of last year. You do the math. So why has my gaming gluttony been sated? Well, let us take a look at what is coming…

Well, according to EB Games, my game store of choice, February looks like this:

Mafia
R-Type Final
AirForce Strike Delta
Drift Racer Kaido Battle
Nightshade
Lupin the 3rd: Treasure of the Sorcerer King
Wrath Unleashed
Hunting Unlimited 2
Black 9
Champions of Norrath: Realms of Everquest
Rise to Honor
MX Unleashed
World Soccer Winning Eleven 7
Lobo
Bond 007: Everything or Nothing
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Jungle Storm
Corvette
Sitting Ducks
Worms 3-D
Pitfall: the Lost Expedition
Judge Dredd: Dredd vs. Death
Romancing the Three Kingdoms IX
Metroid: Zero Mission
Yu-Gi-Oh! World Championship Edition
Static Shock
Shining Soul II
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles

That is the PS2, GameCube, and GameBoy Advance list for February. I left off the XBOX because I don’t have an Illuminati BOX in my home. Let us analyze this data for a moment…

27: Number of Titles, multiplatform titles are counted only once
1: Number I already have pre-ordered (Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles)
1: Number of titles I would pay full retail for (R-Type Final)
4 :Number of titles I would buy at a $20-30 price point (Static Shock, Metroid: Zero Mission, Romancing the Three Kingdoms IX, Champions of Norrath)
2: Number of titles I would consider blaming Misha for (Judge Dredd and Worms)
23: Number of licensed or sequel titles

I mean, in all seriousness, I am supposed to be interested in any of these games? There isn’t one of these games I would consider buying above, say, a new box of Ork Boyz plastics or a new DVD, aside from FF: CC. Now, I’m not decrying this to be the sky falling or anything, but I have to wonder why the Hell there is so little interesting going on in the industry at this moment.

This is not a good sign, but there have to be some sweet games coming in March, right?