The DORK Club

December 3 [2013]


Filed under: 8-o/8====D — Piyonugget @ 3:06pm

Is this back? Am I back?!

January 24 [2013]

Testing It

Filed under: Academia — Travis Trekell @ 8:34pm

Testing literally everything.

September 9 [2009]


Filed under: :-( — Travis Trekell @ 1:27pm

A small glimpse at a better yesterday.

Also: Alternate alternate realities.

August 4 [2009]

Take Your Dings Anyway You Can Get ‘Em

Filed under: 8-o/8====D,Free games,Games (Video) — Travis Trekell @ 8:32am


Ginormo Sword is by no means a good game, but I still spent a few hours transfixed by its siren call of RPG minimalism just the same (while on the clock, naturally).

I’m a big fan of RPGs, the actionier and loot pornier the better, and Ginormo Sword is the genre stripped down to its most minimal essence. “Here are some numbers,” it says, “they represent you. Go; make them higher.”

There’s something inherently compelling about leveling up, raising your stats and finding that perfect piece of equipment. There’s a reason people shell out a monthly fee for the right to grind away in their same-y fantasy MMORPG of choice, filling imaginary bars. This shit is fun, yo.

So Meta It Hurts: Ginormo Sword [Rock Paper Shotgun]

August 3 [2009]

The Machines Win: The Matrix Online Shuts Down

Filed under: :-(,Games (Video),MMO,Video — Travis Trekell @ 7:57am

The Matrix Online has finally joined Morpheus in the great beyond, joining the very short but always expanding list of commercially-released MMOs that have closed up shop.

Check out Giant Bomb‘s 1-hour long video of the end of the world above, and if you find yourself with an extra five hours of your life to waste, you could do worse than skimming through the other videos of Giant Bomb’s time spent with the game. It all starts out very silly and funny and ends up being genuinely sincere and depressing before the end.

The Matrix Online: Not Like This – Part 01
The Matrix Online: Not Like This – Part 02
The Matrix Online: Not Like This – Part 03
The Matrix Online: Not Like This – Part 04

August 2 [2009]

Saving the day, one checkpoint at a time

Q: What do Max Payne 2 and Mass Effect have in common?
A: They’re not Halo.

Replaying Mass Effect as superbitch Renegade Jane Shepard, cutting a bloody path across the galaxy with her lesbian death squad, I’m reminded of the same issue I encountered when trying to play through Max Payne 2 (The Fall of Max Payne) a few months back: Deaths tend to be especially frustrating, potentially costing you multiple hours of progress.

Yes, Max Payne 2 is five years old, but neither game has any excuse. Both were released in the glorious, post-Halo world of modern gaming. So why am I spending time fumbling around with the save system when all I wanna do is play the damned game?


Oh Look: A Website Still on the Internet

Filed under: Site,Sonic the Hedgehog — Travis Trekell @ 1:18pm

This is the part where I try to maintain the site with some degree of regularity. Later, the site sits dormant with some dumbass post or another rotting on the front page for six months. I’m not sure if this is one of those “vicious cycles” we hear so much about or not, but its definitely a cycle, no fun for anyone, and starting again right here and now.

In my attempt to get this site up and functioning again, I accidentally wiped out the last year and a half of content. No big loss, really, but I’ve managed to recover it all through some Google wizardry and may or may not bother re-posting and backdating the whole mess.

The site will probably continue to exist in a half-complete purgatory state for a while as I decide what the hell to do with this/eventually lose interest.

So. The future. Look forward to it?

April 9 [2009]

The Coolest Thing I’ve Seen All Day: Lost

Filed under: Highlight of the Day,Re: Magnavox Televisions,Stephen King's House — Travis Trekell @ 7:27pm

The coolest thing I’ve seen all day? Last night’s episode of Lost. And boy, what an episode it was:

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As Lost winds down its penultimate season, it’s becoming increasingly clear that we will get all the Big Answers to the Big Questions, even if we don’t necessarily want them. For me, Lost has always been an extremely fun, character-driven drama with an obscene attention to continuity and a flare for outlandish mythology.

A large part of the fun is finding the hidden clues buried in still frames and reading through the crazy but always slightly plausible theories fans cook up. If everything wraps up neatly and no room for the interpretation, I’m going to be sorely disappointed, and fear it may end up like so many epics shrouded in mystery that end up revealing too much of their hand (see: The Matrix, 2001, and The Dark Tower).

If the island ends up being a crashed Egyptian spaceship, I’m so not buying the Blu-Ray box set.

LOST 05.12: “Dead Is Dead” (Info Deficient OP Edition) [NeoGAF]

March 30 [2009]

The Coolest Thing I’ve Seen All Day: Kojima Survives to Live

Filed under: hideo kojima,Highlight of the Day — Travis Trekell @ 6:51pm

Kojima? Kojima?! Kojimaaaaaaaaaa!

Mega64: MGS4 (with surprise guests) [NeoGAF]

March 22 [2009]

Whatcha Been Readin’ Part 2

Filed under: No Mention of Mike Brust,Print is Dead,Stephen King's House — Travis Trekell @ 9:20am

My 10-minute commute is 91.6% more awesome than my old two hour commute, but it also means I spend my free time upping my Gamerscore and making fart sounds in Ventrilo rather than reading a book a week. Ah well, let’s reflect on what was.

dispatches michael herrDispatches by Michael Herr
Herr co-wrote the screenplay for Full Metal Jacket, but Dispatches – a series of very personal short stories set in the Vietnam war – is widely considered to be his greatest triumph, and one of the most groundbreaking nonfiction books of the 20th century (according to Wikipedia!). The book moves at breakneck speed, pummeling the reader with a constant assault of violent imagery, begging you to try to keep up and make sense of it all and leaving you feeling as weary and
disgusted as its writer. Brilliant.
First Sentence: There was a map of Vietnam on the wall of my apartment in Saigon and some nights, coming back late to the city, I’d lie out on my bed and look at it, too tired to do anything more than just get my boots off.

mash richard hookerMash: A Novel About Three Army Doctors by Richard Hooker
The movie is better. And so is the TV series, even at its pathetically amateur philosophizing worst. The comedy mostly falls flat, and the only laughs the book inspires comes from memories of seeing the same or similar material performed with better writing and timing in the film or TV series. Every ounce of originality was mined and improved upon long
ago. I won’t be reading the dozen or so sequels.
First Sentence: When Radar O’Reilly, just out of high school, left Ottumwa, Iowa, and enlisted in the United States Army it was with the express purpose of making a career of the Signal Corps.

the brief and wonderous life of oscar wao junot diazThe Brief Wonderous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz
Oscar Wao is a rarity among the lady-killer men of his Dominican family — He’s a nerd. He plays Dungeons & Dragons, reads comic books and watches Anime, writes sci-fi stories, and is a hopeless romantic destined to never find love. Oscar is cursed with a fuku – the curse of doom of the new world – and he’s willing to go to any length to escape
its clutches. Absolutely shocking and heartbreaking, this Pulitzer Prize-winning novel is unquestionably one of the best books I’ve ever read. Just don’t read it before you read/watch Watchmen, there be spoilers ahead.
First Sentence: They say it came first from Africa, carried in the screams of the enslaved; that it was the death bane of the Tainos, uttered just as one world perished and began; that it was a demon drawn into Creation through the nightmare door that was cracked open in the Antilles.

the yiddish policemans union michael chabonThe Yiddish Policemen’s Union by Michael Chabon
Winner of the Book I Saw the Most Other People Reading on BART Award, The Yiddish Policemen’s Union is a hard-boiled detective story set in an alternate history where Israel was destroyed in 1948, leaving the Jewish population stranded in a temporary settlement in Alaska that was just starting to feel permanent. When a child chess prodigy who may
have been the messiah is murdered right under Detective Landsman’s nose, he takes it upon himself to find answers to the questions nobody else cares enough to ask. And thanks to his stubborn tenacity he actually finds them, much to his own surprise.
First Sentence: Nine months Landsman’s been flopping at the Hotel Zamenhof without any of his fellow residents managing to get themselves murdered.

the boy detective fails joe menoThe Boy Detective Fails by Joe Meno
As the work of modernist author and playwrite Samuel Beckett and modern cartoonists Jackson Public and Doc Hammer prove, failure is beautiful. The Boy Detective Fails is a celebration of pulp novels, Saturday morning cartoons, and the prizes found at the bottom of Cracker Jack boxes. And failure, of course. Meno manages to depress and entertain at the same time, and fills his heartbreaking tale with amusing puzzles and mysteries, asking the reader to do some legwork (and use the decoder dial included in the back cover) to get
the most out of the experience. Fun, sad, awesome.
First Sentence: It is no parlor trick: There is a skull and, in the dark, it is glowing.

how the hula girl singsHow the Hula Girl Sings by Joe Meno
When a young ex-con and the strange, towering giant of a man he met in prison return to the small town where he originally committed his crime looking to start a new life, they quickly learn that people don’t forgive others as easily as they forgive themselves. A charming story filled with characters looking for a way to move past their mistakes, and an exploration of guilt and forgiveness that suggests the only person someone is fit to judge is themselves.
First Sentence: Out of nowhere, I did what I ought not to.

hair styles of the damned joe menoHairstyles of the Damned by Joe Meno
Everyone wants to be part of something larger than themselves, to find a group they can apologetically belong to, but nobody more so than Brian Oswald. Set in a Chicago suburb in the early 90s, Hairstyle of the Damned follows Brian as he struggles to fit in, changing his identity as often as he changes his cloths as he tries to figure out just what “being himself” even means. Written in the pitch-perfect prose of an angsty fifteen-year-old, the book is a funny and nostalgic
look at our continuing quest to figure out just who the hell we are.
First Sentence: The other problem I had was that I was falling in love with my best friend, Gretchen, who I thought the rest of the world considered fat.

Previously on The DORK Club:
Whatcha Been Readin’ Part 1

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(c)1997-2008 Travis Trekell