Here it is guys, my review of the remake of a classic, Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary Edition. Let’s get started shall we? Short Story: To celebrate the 10 year anniversary of the release of the original XBox and Halo: Combat Evolved, 343 Industries(who now have full rights to the Halo franchise) has made an HD remake of the classic launch title that captivated gamers everywhere. You play as the Master Chief. The last known surviving member of the UNSC’s genetically enhanced super soldier program, SPARTAN. Master Chief is awaken from a cryogenic sleep in order to prevent the Covenant, an army compiled of multiple alien races who believe that they are on a mission from their God to eradicate any race that opposes their beliefs(and unfortunately, the human race is next on their list), from taking an AI named Cortana. Cortana has all of the intel that the UNSC possesses, including the location of Earth. Chief and Cortana land on a strange ring shaped planet that the Covenant call Halo. Now Chief and Cortana must explore this new planet, uncover the secrets of Halo, and save the human race. All in a day’s work for a SPARTAN if you ask me. The Score: If I would’ve written a review for this game 10 years ago, I would’ve given that same score. 5 out of 5. Body of Review: There’s no denying it. The first Halo was definitely a game changer. It was one of the first FPS’s to really use the melee as an instant kill, and made, for the first time, vehicles fun to drive in an FPS. The controls were great and, the story was one of the best around at the time. And thankfully, 343 made it even better. As far as the overall look of the game, 343 just gave it a facelift. There are a couple of characters that look a little different(in the first level, there are crew members on the ship that are bald when they had hair in the original game), but that’s it. I think the best way to describe the look of the game would be to say that it looks like how you remember the original Halo looking. You know, 10 years ago when you first played Halo, you were left in awe at the graphics, but when you go back and play it now compared to say Halo: Reach, you were left wondering how the first Halo made you wanna cream jeans(that’s right, I said it!!). But now that same feeling comes back as explore Halo once more. As far as game play goes, 343 did the coolest thing possible and basically copy and pasted the game engine code that Bungie wrote for the original game. THANK YOU 343!! So the game feels exactly the same as it did 10 years ago. Now, 343 DID do something really cool. They made it possible during game play to revert back to the original Halo graphics. So any time during game play, you can press the back button on the 360 controller and the game will go back to the original graphics with absolutely no load time and you can go back to the HD graphics with just another press of the back button. That way you can really see the difference in the look that 343 did. And it’s amazing. Now, for the first time ever, you can play online four player co-op in the Halo campaign. Remember, the first Halo was made before XBox Live came around, so the only way you could play Halo multiplayer with your friends was by way of local games or getting a group of friends together for a huge LAN party. Now, you can play either four player campaign or you can go into the Halo Reach multiplayer universe through the Anniversary disc and play Reach multiplayer on classic maps from Halo 1 and 2 remade in HD!! These maps include: Battle Cayon, Breakneck, High Noon, Penance, Ridgeline, Solitary, and Instillation 04(which is the Firefight map in the Halo Anniversary map pack). And the best thing about these map remakes, all of the weapons and items are still in the sames play were in 10 years ago. The locations might be slightly different, but they are still in the same areas of the maps that you remember. So great job to the guys at Certain Affinity(who made the multiplayer maps for Halo: Reach and Halo Anniversary). Another new addition to the game that was made was that 343 included skulls and terminals in the campaign. Each level has at least one skull and a terminal for the player to find. As you know, skulls can be turned on during the campaign to make the game more challenging for the player. For example: there is a skull that causes Grunts to throw twice as many grenades as they usually do(which for those who don’t play Halo, is a lot without the skull turned on). There’s one that only alows you to regain health when you kill an enemy with a melee attack. Now terminals were first introduced in Halo 3. They were located throughout the campaign and when activated they just had a bunch of written text. The terminals in Anniversary are much cooler. When you activate a terminal it goes to a cutscene that is kind of a motion comic. It kind of gives a primer for The Forerunner Trilogy, which will start with the release of Halo 4 next year. Well, that’s it. 343 Industries did a great job reintroducing the game that millions fell in love and became obsessed with 10 years ago to a younger audience. And it makes me even more excited for Halo 4 next year!! Well, that does it for me. Stay tuned next month as I start off 2012 with a review for WWE 12. Laterz!!
OMBG podcast wants to wish you a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Merry Festivus or whatever it is you choose to celebrate! I hope your stocked up on plenty of beer, because you’re going to need it! (Promise, family isn’t everything it’s cracked up to be.) This year, to help get everyone in the mood for the Christmas festivities, we have a very special give away planned! Last year, we teamed up with some great musicians and gave out some free tunes. This year, our friends at In The Skin in Victoria, TX offered up some freebies for you guys! THE GIVE AWAY :: We are going to be giving out some OMBG Merch (shirt of your choice, koozie, buttons, stickers, cds, and cap or bag) alongside a $40.00 gift certificate for In The Skin. In the Skin is a tattoo and piercing shop located in our hometown of Victoria, TX. They are known for their cleanliness, friendliness, and excellent work. I personally get all of my work done by these guys, tattoos and piercings a like and have NOT been dissapointed. TO WIN :: Entering is easy. All that we ask is for you to show your support for your local scene! The contest will begin the week of Christmas. It will begin on December 19th and will run through Christmas Day, December 25th. Now, what exactly do I mean by ‘Show Your Support’? Well, we will be posting a ‘Support Your Scene’ Badge on our Facebook profile. Share the image on your wall to enter, spread the word, and show all of your little facebook friends how awesome you are. (And if your really awesome, you’ll actually get off your fat ass and go to a show) On December 25th, the Old Man and I will take time out of our drunken stupor to tally up the shares. The winner will be chosen at random (Probably drawn out of an empty case of beer) and will be notified within the next few days. A huge thank you goes out to everyone who has supported this endeavor! It has been wonderful sharing our experiences with all of you and I truly do wish you the best the holidays can bring! –Brea
As far back as I can remember, every one of my bands has always had a “drummer thing”. I don’t know what it is, or if it is in other cities, but finding a decent dependable drummer in this town is harder than a German girl ordering Mexican food. It’s not like I can blame anyone… Being a drummer is hard. First, a drummer can easily own the most expensive gear in the band (especially a punk rock band filled with pawn shop guitars). Second, a drummer usually sits in the back getting little to no glory, but if he messes up, he is the first to be critiqued rudely. Third, unless he has roadies or a mega tight group, he will find himself the last person clearing the stage and tearing down. Because of this, I have found most drummers to be unique people, playing for the love of music, loving their craft, and doing things that will make them stand out because this is the life they have chosen. I am proud to say this unique spirit has caused me to befriend most of my drummers in bands past to be great personal friends, of which I am pretty confident to say, I have maintained great friendships with. When I started the Stout City Luchadores back up… I did so cautiously. I had to. The band was everything I wanted in a punk band when I started it. I remember my ex telling me she would leave me if I started a band with such a stupid name and idea (nope don’t miss that one) and the band went on to do some great shows. It was hard too, because when I ressurected the project, I found myself replacing the old members with new ones, and I was really good friends with all the old members especially my old Luchadore drummers Danny White and Chris Benson who became extremely close to my life in 2005-08. Looking for a drummer was hard, my first choice was drumming ninja James Williams but he was busy with The Revival and Set Trip, I knew that his schedule wouldn’t allow for a third band that was going to have a tight schedule as well. I looked for others, Paul Nasty, Aaron Puffer, and even considered calling up Benson again, but knew that they were all busy with other commitments at the time, and while I really wanted to bring this awesome punk rock band back to life, I was worried that this would be the time the fucking “Drummer Thing” would finally beat me. Then Trent Jones walked into my life. I met Trent in college that year. We were both in the jazz combo. He talked to me as much as he talked to the others, so I thought he was a cool cat, but never really much of a close friend. One day in desperate need to fill this spot, I decided to ask him to try out, not expecting much or that he would even be interested. To my surprise he was, and he came to a practice. Trent nailed practice, I could see Brea’s hesitation since we didn’t really know him and bands are usually close knit groups for us, but we took him in (or he took us in who keeps track) because we knew to get this project off the ground we needed a dependable drummer with his own gear and a sense of commitment. Something happened in those last few months… The band started to click, and we began to play like the devil. The more we played and relaxed, the more Trent became etched into our group. His ability to fit in with any group of people, make them at ease and chillax attitude made him more than a likable guy, it made him a good friend. We always knew he was going to leave. He put that out there since the start. He’s going to college to pursue his degree. We will miss him. He’s not just a great drummer, he has proven to be a great friend. He’s never missed a practice or a show, and he has never missed an opportunity to act out, become a spectacle, or have a good time. It would be selfish and greedy for us not to with him well (but we guilt tripped him as much as we could). Aaron from Poor Favor has agreed to step in for awhile until we can find a new permanent solution. Just like that, the “drummer thing” starts all over again. Good Luck Trent.
Hey whatsup? So here is the first trailer for the upcoming sequel to the incredible crap fest that was GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra. Check it out real quick. Hmmm….I have to say, it wasn’t that bad. I’m a little biased because I’m a big fan of The Rock, I’ll say it right now. But the trailer looks ten times better than the entire first movie. First of all, Marlon Wayans is out. Don’t get me wrong, I love the Wayans brothers, but that movie just wasn’t a good fit for him. The Rock looked intense and in your face. And the overall action looked very well done. With that said, there did seem to be some problems. First of all, where the Hell is Sienna Miller? She’s smoking hot, what the Hell is wrong with you? And no Joseph Gordon Levitte as Cobra Commander. C’mon! I know he’s busy with The Dark Knight Rises but he was the best part about the first one. And not to mention that Channing Tatum is back. Who was the worst part about that first movie. Anyway, judging by this first trailer, GI Joe: Retaliation is looking to be a major improvement from the first movie. But we shall see. What are your thoughts about the first trailer? Like? Hate? Indifferent?
Supp? Here some of the trailers that were aired on Spike TV’s annual Video Game Awards. Hope you enjoy!! The Amazing Spider-Man Transformer: Fall of Cybertron Bioshock: Infinite Darksiders 2 So far, 2012 looks pretty good as far as games though. Let’s hope these games will live up to their teaser trailers.
Interview with Mandy and Sturgis from Low Society by Brea Guettner. [audio:http://www.meltedzipper.com/podcastMusic/lowSocietyInterview.mp3] Members :: Mandy Lemons Sturgis Nikides Bio :: You’d be forgiven if, in stumbling upon the first notes of a Low Society song, you thought you’d found a forgotten classic. But a few bars in and you know this is not your grandpa’s blues. Sturgis Nikides slide guitar starts at the blues, but wends its way through the full repertoire of what we sometimes call rock and roll, from its origins in delta blues to its far dark alternative edge. Woven with the powerful voice of his partner in life and crime, Mandy Lemons, his genre-bending guitar style has found its home. Over the past two years the pair has codified their shared love of Texas and Delta Blues, hillbilly music and the subversive underground rock music of mid-seventies New York City into their own subconscious language. Their original album of modern blues, ‘High Time’ is the result. Nikides first picked up a guitar after seeing the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan show. By his teens he was playing sold out shows at New York’s legendary nightspots CBGB and Max’s Kansas City. First with Neon Leon and then for iconic Velvet Underground chanteuse Nico before joining the VU’s John Cale for his 1979 single, “Ready for War.” After a few years of touring and recording with Cale, most notably the underappreciated Honi Soit for A&M Records, Sturgis migrated south, to Miami Beach where he formed the critically acclaimed band Voidville before releasing his debut solo album, Man of Steel, in 2004. He packed venues in the Northeast, from New York to the Great Lakes, before he and Mandy played their first gig together as Low Society in February 2010. Mandy sings the blues with an astonishing powerhouse voice which mixes southern fried soul and northern attitude. She hails from Houston Texas, home of the late great Lightnin’ Hopkins, and considered one of the blues ‘capitals’ of the world. Her mother exposed her to Billie Holiday at an early age, which made a lasting impression. You will be astonished to hear so much power coming out of such a small figure, and you can clearly hear the influences of Koko Taylor, Etta James, Bessie Smith, and of course Janis Joplin. Her performances are visually and emotionally dramatic, approaching near legendary status. Hans Werksman, writer of the music blog ‘Here Comes The Flood’ says “Seriously lacking in stage fright, Miss Lemons is able to scare the shit out of Joss Stone.” Low Society’s songs are an exciting amalgamation of blues, rock ‘n roll and old school soul music, with lyrics that invoke Mandy’s hard scrabble Texas origins. Their exciting debut CD ‘High Time’ has been called “an audacious dirty blues record” by Sex & Guts Magazine writer Gene Gregorits, including standout tracks like ‘Dead Man’s Shoes’, ‘Black Pelican’ and Mandy’s soul baring, soon to be a classic, ‘Three Time Loser’. Low Society is on a mission to reinvigorate the ears of music lovers the world over. Contact :: email@example.com www.screaminblues.com
Brea and I took the trek up to College Station this weekend to attend an after hours after party. After eating and boozing in a restaurant and a pub, we joined the rest of the group in a night club that tried to look like a country dance hall, but played a mix of top 40 rap music in it’s playlist This is nothing new, we’d both seen it a hundred times in clubs and tourist bars (that’s what I call bars you have to pay admission to) before. T hat night ended with Brea almost decking some broad in a conversation over music (Brea: these songs are stupid they’re all about cheating and money and cars people don’t have. Woman in bar: well what else is there to sing about?) The creme de la creme though, was when the line dancing started. The whole place looked like it was doing one big choreographed nightmare… Brings me back to my first experience with it… It was like 2003 or maybe 2002. I was talked into going to this birthday party at a local bar/club. Well, I wasn’t really talked into going, you see there was this girl who sat in my cubicle row at my job at the time that I wanted to seal the deal with. She was cute, bubbly, talkative, a little too good to be true, but I knew she had a flaw, mostly because she was so into going into this local bar/club. The place was not my cup of tea, as a matter of fact, no self respecting punk rocker would be caught dead in there…. but hey, she was cute right? So I go to this party The first thing about this club I notice is that, well there’s a dress code, I can’t stand dress codes. I didn’t like them in school and I damn sure don’t like them in my adult life. Why should I have to dress to someone else’s standards to drink or try to get laid? It makes no sense. I am a fan of getting what you pay for, if I pick someone up in a bar, you kind of want to know what you’re getting into. That means, I don’t think I should have to put on slacks, tuck my shirt in or not wear a cap backwards. Bars are a beautiful thing. They are social gathering places. Every band I have ever had has been thought of and recruited in bars, most great revolutions have come from bars, hell the podcast was created after a night out at a show… so why would I bother to go to a place where I have to change my style of clothes and actually pay to get in? As PT Barnum said… “There’s a sucker born every minute” So I pay my way in, before looking for the birthday group, I stop at the main bar. It’s a nice looking place (it better be for the price I paid to get in) so I saunter up to the bartender who is a good looking gal in a bikini top, and ask her for a Guinness. She laughs “We don’t serve GUINNESS here sir, this is a country bar.” So, I say “OK can I get a Lone Star?” she laughs again. “No sir… this is a nice bar.” Turns out “nice country bars:” only serve Budweiser, Bud Light or Miller Lite… in other words… shitty beer. So I ask for a Jack Daniels on the rocks. She says… “nothing to mic it with?” “No ma’aam… I’m a a man” I finally get to the party area. They are all there… people are actually surprised to see me… things are going ok. The girl I was talking about was there. She says hello, we talk and drink, I finish mine and have another… letting the alienation I feel either settle for a bit, or drink until I don’t care… Then… It happens. There’s this song… it comes on. All the girls squeal like banshees and run onto the floor. Some guys do to… and they all start dancing. Let me rephrase that…. they all start dancing the SAME. I swear I feel like I am in the ending of “Encino Man” and I’m not quite sure how I feel about it. I’m looking at the party, the tables are almost empty everyone is on the dance floor and doing this horrid dance. They girl I was talking to… she doesn’t look so attractive to me anymore. No one in the bar does, and this whiskey starts to taste like poison. I fear for a second, that a spotlight is going to come on me, and I will have to solo… yes… that’s what’s going to happen… the beat will stop the spotlight will shine, and I will have to exress myself a la Corey Feldman in dance. So I left. Didn’t say a word. I have a habit of doing that at bars when things go awry. Flash back to present: There is a dude who has been buying me and Brea drinks all night, he’s a cool cat, likes his motorcycle and calls himself a “country bumpkin”. After my 4th Lonestar… and this second line dance the fella looks at me and says “I’m not much of a dancer really, but this line dance stuff is bullshit” I like that guy. We make sure to get him a shot. This is actual video of the zombies we saw Saturday Night…