Deus Ex: Human Revolution Playthrough, Part II

Deus Ex: Cover system and HUDAlright, I’m back and have put more time into the game, and so far, I've been really enjoying it.  This setup of having Jensen near death and needing augmentations to live really helps the story become more believable.  What I mean by that is when you begin the game, after completing the tutorial and the beginning credits have finished, you'll notice the game's HUD (heads-up display)  for the first time.  It makes sense that you can see it now and not before because augmentations were made to all components of Jensen's body including his eyes, because the HUD that you see is what he sees as well.  However, when you climb ladders, the camera shifts into 3rd person point of view, and the HUD is no longer visible.  This makes perfect sense as you’re not viewing the world through Jensen’s eyes any longer.  When you duck behind cover or hide around a corner, though, and you put yourself back into 3rd person view, the HUD is still visible.  This, to me, doesn’t make much sense as far as creating the overall experience, but it certainly doesn’t ruin my gameplay either.   I’m playing the game at a 1920x1080 resolution, and the HUD really hasn’t been a hindrance; in fact, even though a lot can be conveyed on the screen at one time as compared to other games where the HUD tends to take up a lot of screen space, Deus Ex does a better job of maintaining the developer’s created atmosphere.

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Our Fantastic Week Ahead: September 19

SpellcastA few weeks ago, we featured a review of Spellcast--a novel by Barbara Ashford that connects the magic of the theater with more explicit supernatural forces.  This week, we are thrilled to feature a guest post by Barbara Ashford herself, in which she explains her motivations for writing the novel and discosses some of the connections between the novel and the musicals that she features in it.  It's a fascinating behind-the-scenes look that will appeal to fans of both fantasy and the theater.

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Fantastically Fun Fridays: September 16, 2011

Dante's Inferno

Happy Friday!  We hope you all had a great week, and that you had the chance to read, watch, or play some great science fiction or fantasy.

I'm currently reading Dante's Inferno for a class--not quite fantasy as we know it today, but certainly fantasy-adjacent.  And I have plans to watch some Doctor Who this weekend.  What about you?  Let us know what you're reading, watching, or playing in the comments!

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The Keys to the TARDIS: The Daleks of Old

Daleks...! Wherever I have travelled in time and space I have met no deadlier adversary. Their single-minded destructive instinct has terrorized more peoples on more planets than I have time to mention. They are my greatest enemy! - The Doctor

DaleksThose of you who have only watched the revived episodes of Doctor Who cannot fully appreciate the extent to which the Daleks are an integral part of the whole Doctor Who experience. Without the Daleks, Doctor Who would never have survived the programme cuts of the BBC. Without the Daleks there would never have been the “hide-behind-the-couch” fear induced in viewers. Without the Daleks there would never have been the fan-fiction writers who are now the scriptwriters for the current episodes.

For Whovians of my generation, all the other monsters pitched against Doctor Who are simply place holders reserving the programming slot on Saturday evenings until the Doctor once again meets his nemesis. If we didn’t believe the Daleks would return, no matter how many times they have been totally wiped out by the Doctor, we would give up watching the series.

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The Fantastic in the Fine Arts: Mysterious Edinburgh Sculptures and the Work of Su Blackwell

This week, I learned of this unbelievably awesome, beautiful, and fantastic thing that's happening in Scotland: someone is creating sculptures out of books, and leaving them around Edinburgh.

It started in March with a tree and an egg filled with words (that, when put in order, make Edwin Morgan's "A Trace of Words").

And, magically enough, it continued.  There was a scene where a movie comes to life, with horses and men running out from a screen towards the filmgoers.  There was a dragon nestled in a teacup.  Another showed a child in a forest, with the inscription bearing the words "LOST (albeit in a good book)."

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