Some liquid crystal games you could set your watch to

Game & Watch (1980)

You know, when you think about it, you can pretty well make a game out of anything. Many’s the time, before ubiquitous internet, when we would have raindrop races, betting on which raindrop would reach the bottom of the window first. Would you call that a misspent youth?

Well, if you wanna talk youth, here’s a game you could try with your kids – have them stand against a wall and put a fiver between their noses and the wall, telling ‘em that whoever breaks first gets nothing, and the other kid keeps the two fivers. That one was a classic, and it probably still works if you can find some physical cash, and a child deprived of that most basic of human rights, the iPad.

Continue reading “Some liquid crystal games you could set your watch to”

Keeping your television safe – we play so you don’t have to

Wii Play (2006)

It’s time for me to go shopping for a new idiot box. I don’t watch an awful lot of telly these days, really. When I was younger, it was a different story – first in the morning’s run was Nick Jr., which I was slightly too old for, but Blue from Blue’s Clues and the Face weren’t to know that. Then it was over to the big boy Nickelodeon for some classic cartoon fare – Doug, Hey Arnold, Rugrats, then a quick commute to Cartoon Network for the unmissable Ed, Edd n Eddy, Dexter’s Laboratory and Johnny Bravo, before drifting on back to Nick for Kenan and Kel and Sabrina.

When all that was done, it was a taped episode of Pokemon or two, if I had time. And then topping it off, a beautiful treat of two classic Simpsons episodes and one episode of the Fresh Prince between 6 and 7PM on BBC2. At this point I was usually run out of the room, no more TV for me. That was the peril of having only one good TV in the house with decent channels, unless you counted our old black-and-white portable, which I didn’t. God, you’d think I was talking to you from the 1960s, wouldn’t you?

Continue reading “Keeping your television safe – we play so you don’t have to”

He’s the rotten apple of the nasty Kong’s eye

Donkey Kong Jr. (1982)

I know it’s coming, by God, I know it’s coming. I’m like the gorilla in that Dairy Milk ad, sitting and waiting on the drum-kit as Phil Collins lilts through the air, before everything comes crashing down. I’m talking about the biological clock of course, and how madly it begins to tick. It’s not my own clock, of course, my tadpoles are good for life. But the missus you see, the bells toll for her. She tells me now, “no kids”, “I like being able to hand them back” and all that game.

Don’t listen to all that, this is all just designed to trap young bucks like you and I into settling down. Then, before you know it, you’re changing nappies because you’re a “modern man”. Then you’re losing an absolute fortune. Then, you’re almost as much of a disappointment to your unruly child as they are to you. God, they might even bring the police home, or worse, someone who supports your favourite team’s biggest rivals. 

Continue reading “He’s the rotten apple of the nasty Kong’s eye”

24 centimetres, I didn’t know they stacked it that high

Stack-Up (1986)

It’s funny how your job description gets thrown out from under you. I was initially employed as a Customer Success Manager, which is a nice and fancy way of saying a Project Manager, with a particular proclivity for taking guff from clients. By the end of it I was a chatbot programmer, developer, troubleshooter, optimiser, humaniser, tester and detester in all but name.

Yes, if you’ve ever gone on to a company’s website and tried to complain, only to find yourself confronted by a “hip”, “cool” chatbot who says “Great! I’m happy to hear that” when you tell it that your grandmother has died, then yes, that was me, and I’m truly very sorry for all that.

Continue reading “24 centimetres, I didn’t know they stacked it that high”

Pubmaster Burkey does his best to ensure everyone is here

Super Smash Bros Ultimate

Super Smash Bros Ultimate (2018)

It’s quite the event on the social calendar, you know, and I take great pride in organising it every year, or at least on the years when people can be bothered with it. It quickly becomes front-page news, with everyone talking about it, and I’m ashamed to say some lewd scenes and paparazzi photographs have made it to the back pages on occasion.

Everyone is welcome, but if you haven’t got the stamina for it then you’ll find yourself left behind in an instant. Make it to the end though, and you can take great pride in the fact that there are not many who’ve achieved what you just have. I’m talking, of course, about the 12 Pubs of Christmas.

Continue reading “Pubmaster Burkey does his best to ensure everyone is here”

Virtual grasscutting? What am I, The Lawnmower Man?!

No More Heroes (2008)

I just want to put it on the record that I absolutely despise cutting the grass. I think I could like it, if I had one of those sit-down lawnmowers that I could just swing out of, almost rallying it through my heavily undulating garden. Perhaps I could even rig up some rope pulley system, attach it to the steering wheel, fall asleep and have it mow the lawn in a nice, automated circular pattern. It beats having to push your pathetic little banger-mower against the Amazon rainforest anyway.

Continue reading “Virtual grasscutting? What am I, The Lawnmower Man?!”

Ladies and gentlemen, class and decorum have left the building

Animal Crossing (2004)

Just like you can never really know what your workmates are gonna be like until you’re deeply entrenched in the low-pay grind with them, it’s pretty difficult to consciously choose your neighbours. Mind you, in this day and age you can at least go onto local neighbourhood watch pages on social media and do a quick search for the street or estate you plan to move into. If there’s barely any mentions of your desired area on there, then your children will be able to practice the dulcimer and eat their activated almonds in peace. But if your finger gets tired scrolling through all of the reports of anti-social behaviour, your home life will shape up like a scene from the Walking Dead.

Continue reading “Ladies and gentlemen, class and decorum have left the building”

A future in Bitcoin… I wish I was really feeling it

Xenoblade Chronicles (2011)

So it’s another up, down, will it won’t it ride on the Bitcoin rollercoaster lately, or whatever other cryptocurrency you’re having yourself, and for us losers it’s another hard luck story. If I’d only been a few years older, or a bit more willing to put money into dubious sources, or if only I hadn’t destroyed that old hard-drive under police duress for reasons which cannot be specified – I could have sold one or two of them bitcoins, whatever they are, and made millions off them. Like you wouldn’t have soiled yourself at the prospect of doubling your money to a mere eighty quid.

Continue reading “A future in Bitcoin… I wish I was really feeling it”

The Smash Bros hype is such a trip sometimes

Super Smash Bros. Brawl (2008)

Anyone who’s ever signed up to the rollercoaster of hype knows what they’re getting themselves in for. You’re wishing your life away, waiting for this next big game or film to come out. If you’re particularly masochistic, you might even be hyped up for your wedding day. When the release day is still months away, and when you’re in your quiet, unguarded moments, you’ll revert back to being a child and making yourself almost sick with how much you want this thing – this thing that, in time, will become passé. That is until the next shiny object gets teased and the cycle begins all over again.

Continue reading “The Smash Bros hype is such a trip sometimes”

It’s the greatest sport since Tit Cricket

Tetris (1989)

You wouldn’t believe the kind of sports, games and events out there that are being done competitively. Ever heard of the Bog Snorkelling Championship? Here in Ireland we have the National Ploughing Championships, and once you’ve stopped laughing, I’ll have you know that it’s quite a big event on the redneck social calendar, and I’ve never gotten an invite to it. And believe me, though I hate to say it, I want one.

Continue reading “It’s the greatest sport since Tit Cricket”