News: Silent Hill Was Here, It’s Gone Now…

Microsoft’s Nextbox To Potentially Face Delays

Xbox Achievement
Just what do you think you are doing, Dave?

The CPU chip to Microsoft’s forthcoming successor to the Xbox 360 has entered into mass production a short while ago, yet has already hit a brick wall in terms of the production’s yield, which would have to improve substantially to even be considered horrible. Microsoft have allegedly decided upon a September 2013 release date for their new console, yet they seem unlikely to hit this date if the gremlins have not been worked out of the process by late February of 2013. Interestingly, Microsoft have sourced the production of their CPU (known internally as ‘Oban’) from three different manufacturers, presumably to tripple-up on the likelihood that technicians will be able to achieve a breakthrough in terms of improving the yield.

It has been revealed that the Oban itself is a multicore AMD x86 CPU, and will be accompanied by a newer than expected GPU from AMD’s HD7000 line of processors. It should be stated that a poor production yield of the chip does not necessarily indicate a lack of quality for the few chips that manage to pass muster. That said, one wonders whether history is not repeating itself, with Microsoft offering some extremely ambitious and capable hardware which is destined to be plagued by an unacceptably high mortality rate.

Warren Denies the Spector of Beck

Warren Spector
This Man is due respect.

It is a little known fact that failed television presenter and consummate douche, Glenn Beck, is a big fan of similarly washed-up Disney character, Oswald the Rabbit. How big a fan? He is such a fan that he sent one of his people to the recent Gamestop EXPO so that they might acquire for him a pair of Oswald rabbit ears, which were being handed out in promotion of Warren Spector’s forthcoming title, Epic Mickey 2. Happily, the task of Beck’s minion was frustrated somewhat when, after letting slip that he was acquiring the ears for Beck, Spector quickly snatched back the promotional item, declaring: “Anybody who associates with Glenn Beck doesn’t get these”.

After this curt exchange Disney security promptly arrived to escort away the hapless minion, while a butthurt Beck was left fuming, comparing Warren Spector to Phill Spector for daring to have standards. While some may argue that political ideology should not come into play with respect to the provision of entertainment, it is nevertheless the case that no creator of children’s entertainment would wish to have their product associated with someone as vile and unsavoury as Glenn Beck. This story does however come with a sting in its tail, in that Beck was eventually able to obtain a pair of the ears, a petty triumph which had him crowing.

Silent Hill Pariah Trolls Long-Suffering Fans

Silent Hill Heather Light
There were some jimmies here; they are rustled now.

It is not an easy life being a once-fan of the Silent Hill franchise, and seeing the various ways that Konami find to disrespect the source material on an annual basis. Imagine then the eternal anguish of those who are unable to extricate themselves from their Silent Hill fandom. It has been nine years since the last legitimately brilliant entry in the series, and eight years since the last entry that was even somewhat decent. Every product to be released since 2004 has without exception misunderstood the series on a narrative, thematic, and design level without exception, being farmed out to lowest-bidder software sweatshops, and shipping rife with bugs. The most recent series release, Silent Hill HD Collection, should have been a slam dunk of quality and nostalgia, but instead could be charitably described as an alpha-build, as there was no one aspect of the original titles that was left unscathed from the HD-port’s incompetence. This week the man responsible for the shabby state of the Silent Hill HD Collection, along with the direction of the series as a whole, decided that it would be a fun jape to use his personal blog to troll Silent Hill fans who were unhappy about Silent Hill: Book of Memories.

The Silent Hill franchise is not a sacred cow, clearly, yet when Tomm Huelett unveiled his newest take on the series, a Diablo clone re-skinned as Silent Hill spin-off, Silent Hill fans met the announcement with extreme negativity on account of meagre Silent Hill resources being dedicated to this when the series has not received a good title in close to a decade. In response to this, Huelett thought that it it would be cute to post pictures from Persona 4 Arena, Theatrhythm: Final Fantasy, and Dissidia: Final Fantasy, along with the words: “Look around, Silent Hill fans, it really is just you”, indicating that he really just does not get it.

But then what should anyone even expect from a custodian of the series who has previously described both Silent Hill 2‘s acting and combat as “shitty”? At this point it is very difficult to see the Silent Hill series’ continuation, and that is for the good of all for a certainty. The franchise needs to spend at least a full console generation on ice, after which people who actually ‘get’ the series might be able to launch a nostalgic come-back game, or, failing that, the series can finally be laid to rest, and the mediocre sequels forgotten. Silent Hill: Book of Memories may not be truly deserving of all the hate that comes its way, but Tomm Hulett certainly is, and provoking upset fans is no way to calm the situation, if such a thing were possible.

10 comments

  1. Good for Warren Spector! Glenn Beck is a disgusting subhuman, and the world improves whenever decent people set a positive example by publically deriding a stooge who appeals to and upholds the basest impulses of fear, jealousy, and willful, spiteful ignorance.

  2. @Matt: I’m not certain I agree.

    Are his advocated beliefs stupid and disgusting? Absolutely.

    Is the best way to deal with him, then, to treat him unfairly? Absolutely not. Argue against his beliefs, assuredly; but, do not descend to punitive efforts ad hominem, verbal or otherwise.

    If hats are being given away “free to all comers”, Glenn Beck deserves one just as much as you or I, whatever his avowed beliefs may or may not be. Otherwise, what are we setting ourselves up for?: a situation in which one’s eligibility for swag is dependent upon one’s political convictions or stated philosophies? No thanks. That’s not equality in any sense, no matter how well-meaning the intent may be.

    If you want a fair society, you have to treat everyone fairly–including people whom you may think are disgusting and terrible. The moment you deviate from that is the moment you, too, slip into the gutter with those whom you would seek to punish for their beliefs. For they, too, desire to disenfranchise those with whom they disagree.

    Equality must needs extend to everyone, otherwise it is no equality.

    Sorry, but I think Glenn Beck deserved to get his ears, in this case. And I’m glad he did get them in the end, even if I think he is a fear-mongering ape.

  3. I’m not even entirely sure that I agree with myself.

    But my rationalisation of the event is that Beck doesn’t just harbour controversial views, but does in fact engage in some pretty damn poor behaviour. Nonetheless, it is a slippery slope, and very hard to discern where the cut-off point should be.

  4. Morally, ethically, logically, you are absolutely right. There is no valid argument against your standpoint. I was not analysing, but purging.

    SN brings up a good point too, which I’m interpreting as “he got what he deserves,” as in if Glenn Beck were acting according to “treat others as you would have them treat you,” he got a relatively civilized reaction. It’s not so much a question of his political and social views, but the way that he puts them forward. So I do believe that everyone has a right to their views, and that no one should be abused just for holding them, but this one particular person has been marked for pushing so much negativity.

    Perhaps we can add into this discussion the extra dimension of Beck’s celebrity and how that affects ethical qualifiers? Does the fact that this man has made a career out of pushing his views as publically as possible make a public reaction against him any more justifiable, or does the “live and let live” principle apply unequivocally?

    In a wide perspective, it is puerile to engage in the same kind of behaviour you seem to be against. Now in this incident (and disregarding my first reaction to it), I at least understand why Mr. Spector responded the way he did; it was a gut reaction. I’m sure he didn’t take a moment to think about what qualifies as a justifiable response in an ideal society, but did what he *felt* was right at the time.

    And what you said, Lusipurr, is relevent to the current poltical situation in the United States. The anti-Obama bumper sticker-sized opinions put forth by Republicans now are similar to the ones put forth by Democrats only a few years ago (not in content, but in value), yet neither side are recognizing in themselves what they seem to detest in the other. I think we’d all appreciate a lot more cooperation and positive thinking, because 50% of us can’t be wrong one way or another. Both sides have to admit their faults and contribute their strengths to the greater good, rather than try to gain however slight enough edge necessary to claim total victory.

    But how would you cooperate and think positively with a ghoul like Beck? (I know, ad hominem, vergib mir). I suppose then my suggestion is like that if there is a bully running amok calling everyone bad names at school, I wouldn’t want to say, “I’m not an asshole, but you’re entitled to your opinion. Here’s your free lollipop since I’m handing them out to everyone.” Instead, I hope that someone would call the bully out on his bullshit to try to stop him from menacing otherwise well-meaning people. Now, one popular method is to ignore a bully, and I think that can work and apply to Glenn Beck and whomever. But this is a person who is actively trying to get people to adopt his talking his points as their own, not just some passive, private individual.

    I suppose that’s enough response for now. I appreciate you pointing out my logical fallacy(ies); a man should know and learn from his mistakes.

  5. To answer that is fairly simple. Glenn Beck is trying to convince people to assume his views. And, if he believes in them, that is what he should do. How he does it–well, that is a combination of bad argument and unsound thinking, in my view–but again, he is well within his right in a society which values free speech to use that freedom to argue cheaply, poorly, and fallaciously. He is not, like the bully in your example, personally and locally harassing individuals; he is advocating general beliefs. Nor is a schoolyard like the adult world of free speech. You think someone should stand up to him, and in that we agree. I just think that it plays into his hand and diminishes us if we stand up to him by engaging in discriminatory behaviour. How does that disprove one whit of what he has said; in fact, it only serves to prove his paranoid arguments! Far better to treat him fairly, but to DESTROY his arguments–that is how to stand up to such a man.

    What about us? We, too, want to convince people of our views. And our methods might be more sound or more fair, as the case may be. Does that mean that we can therefore deny Beck privileges that we would extend to others solely on the basis of the fact that we think he’s a dick and we think we are superior? Well, sure, I suppose so. I bet Beck thinks the same way. And so Spector is within his rights to deny Beck a hat–but I don’t think it particularly useful, and, ultimately, it legitimises a terrible result: that disagreeing with someone’s avowed opinions means you ought to discriminate against them in unrelated ways.

    I think it would have been better if Spector had said, “Mr. Beck! I find your views repugnant, and I dislike you personally, but this is an event about something not related to those views or even to politics at all. And, accordingly, here is your hat.” Why? Because it is the egalitarian position to take, because it is the position of the speaker who values free speech over all else to take, because it prevents the speaker from descending into Beckian discrimination, or the politicisation of the nonpoliticial, or partisanship. In short, the speaker doesn’t have to sink to the level of those he abhores and, by that turn, the moment becomes a teaching point for those who need it most–and for Mr. Beck himself, whether or not he cares to notice.

    I think (as I suspect you do) that Beck’s status as a privileged speaker or encourager of his own beliefs doesn’t really change the crux of my argument, though. Ultimately, the exercise of free speech shouldn’t result in unrelated penalties, but it SHOULD result in well-stated counterarguments, reasoned debate, and pertinent discussion. Otherwise, we start to move away from the freedom of speech and into the realm of the privilege of speech, when it is agreeable to a certain measure, when it suits certain standards, and when it ticks certain boxes, lest punishment result.

    And that, to me, isn’t freedom at all.

  6. I think now this was just one man’s immediate gut reaction to somethat that disgusted him, and he didn’t mean it to be right or set a good example. Hatred clouded his judgement, as it had mine.

    I don’t think that Beck’s status changes the crux or correctness of your argument either, just that it may have provided some additional ambiguity to explore.

    This topic reminds me of something personal. Have you ever had an experience like this: talking to a person who has steadfastly chosen to vote Republican, a choice which may be detrimental to other things they feel strongly about, simply enough because they *believe* it is a disgrace to our country to have a black president? Where any counter-argument is met by a person literally frothing at the mouth repeating, “It’s a disgrace! My father would be rolling in his grave!” and then some things which are completely inappropriate to repeat in our polite company? There is no debate, there is no reason, it feels like talking to a monster. I do not mean having an argument with someone who disagrees with you, by the way, it’s so far beyond logic.

    I’m glad we had this discussion, because I’ve been concerned about the “unrelated penalties” I may be inflicting upon a person who I had this experience with, who I do care about and is important in my life. They disgusted me and it’s difficult to share my time and conversation with them after that. It’s absolutely fair for them to keep their views, which I disagree with on a basic human level, but civil discourse on that topic has proven to be out of the question. Ethically, I shouldn’t withold from visiting with a person whose personal views offend me, because they have nothing to do with the rest of our time together.

  7. Lusipurr has the right of this conversation, but I guess in this instance I am hypocritical enough to approve of what happened to Beck, even if such a principle would be completely unacceptable if universalised.

  8. SN, that’s what I’m sayin’ too. You’re able to put things much more succinctly :]

  9. @SN: Well, it isn’t hypocrisy to approve of the ends whilst deploring the means, unless the ends is inextricably linked to the means (and in this case, it is not).

    @Matt: There are some complexities, to be sure. For example, could we argue that Spector refusing to give Beck a hat is, in fact, an argument of itself–an attempt at correction-by-punishment, or something like a wake-up call? Perhaps, but then I’d respond again that sinking to Beck’s level is not the best way to educate him or correct him, because the punishment involves denying him something given freely to everyone else, some of whom might also have nasty views which they push around in their own localities.

    So what about ynd your acquaintence? Well, I’d say that the two situations are not entirely analogues to each other. The ‘privilege’ you are considering withholding is not something being offered to the wide world as ‘free to all comers without restrictions’–nor would anyone assume it to be. The privilege of your company, friendship, collegiality, or what-have-you, is not something which is universally open, nor could it be if you wanted to live anything like a normal life. There are restrictions of privacy and personal likes/desires, all of which are recognised by the vast majority of humanity. Consequently, if you wish to deny your friendship to someone for any or no reason, you are within your right to do so.

    But should you? Perhaps. There is a lot to be said for disagreeing with someone but remaining friends with them. This allows you at least the possibility of further argument which may serve your ends if your arguments are good and if the other person is at all open to the possibility that they could be wrong–as any good arguer should be. SN and I disagree about many things, but we are also excellent friends and we do not let that get in the way of our shared discourse because, ultimately, we agree on matters of more import, and disagree on matters of less import.

    But what if the individual in question holds utterly repugnant positions and there is no possibility of going forward. What if, for example, you are a Jew and your friend is a committed Nazi? Can you, or should you, remain friends?

    In this instance, because the other individual is committed to something which is in a fundamental opposition to your entire worldview–not just a part of it, but the whole of it–and they are actively pursuing methods by which to bring their desires into being, and so harm you and others, you are not logically obliged to remain friends with them, for the pursuance of that belief is itself an assault on your rights and freedoms, and you would be right to be done with such an individual.

    What about your actual situation? Without knowing the whole of it, there is a case to be made that the individual in question is seeking to create a society which is actively destructive to your worldview. By adopting a policy purely designed to penalise someone solely for the colour of their skin, he is advocating a massively inequal state which would represent the abrogation of equality before the law. In such a state, you yourself could not truly expect freedom, for if the state can penalise one skin colour, it can penalise any skin colour–including your own.

    The issue is probably far too complex for a comment thread of any length, and I also do not think there can be any truly universal approach to it–rather, most things must be dealt with on a case-by-case basis, as is the case for most matters of logic when they involve morality, But, I do not think that the situation you describe from your personal life is analogus to that of Spector and Beck, so you can rest easy, if my opinion is worth anything in that direction.

  10. This conversation has actually forced me to recall that Women who deliberately swerved to hit a member of the Westboro Baptist Church with her car, and then got off with nary a sanction due the the jury’s reluctance to penalise her.

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