Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Trial

Remember how I said I'd transcribed "Train" from Einstein on the Beach? Well, I just did it for the "Trial" scene, too! If you'd like it, again, just email me! Don't be shy! [EDIT(10/04/2012): Actually, do. I was just saying that.] I don't get a lot of email anyway.
Oh, by the way:




Friday, 5 October 2012

Train

I've finally finished transcribing Train (from Einstein on the Beach) into MIDI. It sure took a while!
If you'd like it (it sounds great in Synthesia, I'll have you know), just send me an email at mactavish.alex@gmail.com.

Friday, 31 August 2012

Ravens Picture

Here's a picture of Ravens I made in photoshop. I plan to make a foggy version at some point, too. Keep in mind that this is still a work in progress, particularly the grass.

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Journey Review


Ever since I played thatgamecompany's Journey back around April, I've been wanting to review it, but I'm not really sure how to approach it, since it's been reviewed many times, and they all basically say the same thing, but since I don't want my blog to die, I'll just sort of say whatever.

Visuals
One of the most critically applauded areas of the game is the visuals, and I can't disagree. They aren't quite realistic, but still are quite impressive - more like a painting than a photo. That being said, the distinct visual style doesn't take away from the immersion - in fact, it's executed so well that it really adds to the game. Particularly the ending scene (I won't spoil it, just take my word for it, or play the game if you haven't!). I think what gives it its distinct feel is the texturing, which is much more minimal than your average game. The only thing is, sometimes there are some wonky camera angles, like a nice view inside a block or something. But that doesn't happen if you don't try to put the camera there, I guess.

Audio
I'm sure you've heard before about how awesome the music is, and how it's really haunting and stuff. I don't want to reiterate, but it really is. There have been great video game soundtracks before, but I'd go as far as to say that this is the greatest video game soundtrack of all time. I mean, even the emotional ending of Puccini's La Boheme can't compare to the emotional ending of "Apotheosis".
One thing, however, that hasn't been mentioned are the sound effects themselves. There aren't an overwhelming amount, but they do their job nicely. They're convincing, and there are some memorable ones, certainly. I can't really complain in that regard, except maybe the player interaction noise gets annoying sometimes.

Story
I'm not really sure what exactly the story is, but that's a good thing, maybe. Obviously, you're trying to get to a mountain, but with all these ruins and cutscenes, it really hints at something deeper. It's not a huge narrative, but rather it implies that something huge and mysterious happened a long time ago. It really makes you think.


All that being said, I have missed one critical part, which is other characters. Remember, it is online, so you can encounter other people. In that regard, though, you might be a bit disappointed, because it seems quite rare now that I ever meet someone in-game, and even when I do, they leave fairly quickly. I guess I can't blame people, because with no new content, there's not really any reason to keep playing. For that reason, it kind of seems like thatgamecompany wanted to make an awesome online game, but they never really thought through the implications of doing so. "The curse of the online game", if you will.

Summary:
Awesome game, looks beautiful, great soundtrack, mysterious, a bit lonely, buy it now!

Friday, 10 August 2012

Yes, I'm Still Going To Review Stuff

But I'm just popping my head in here to announce that I've gotten 10,000 views! Thanks, everybody!


Also, this is the 100th post. Double yay!

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

A Test

Note: This page should NOT be public. I have no idea why it's doing this.
In any case, you can now be thoroughly confused by its contents.








Wednesday, 25 July 2012

So I Guess I'll Start Reviewing Things Now

I don't really have much to talk about now, so I figure I'll start writing reviews about things 'n' stuff. Stay tuned, everybody!

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Evil Subway

I'm writing a short story about a subway that eats people. It's complicated. Here's a little snippet of it:

Exactly 17.485 kilometres away, there was a small, lonely apartment. There was a dirty window at one end, which was covered by a thin, tattered curtain. At the other end, there was a small desk, which was surrounded by cascade of many different types of tools, some of which were literally encrusted with dust from years of a lack of use. On the desk there was a grey rotary phone, and a sea of papers. Leaning on that sea of papers was a weathered plumber by the name of Warren. Warren was resting after a long morning of repairs. This small apartment was his sanctuary; it was not clean, or otherwise comfortable by any means, but it was his. Nobody else could enter, so everything here was his, even the seemingly infinite layers of dust.
Warren sighed, then sat up. He stared at the window. He stood up, walked to it, then moved the curtain to the side, pouring light into the room. Somehow it seemed to make everything a bit less dead. He then walked over to his couch and sat down, making a large cloud of dust erupt from the surface of the cushion. He leaned forward, and switched on his TV set, which displayed the face of a reporter at a crime scene on the side of a road somewhere. The reporter discussed the atrocities of the situation, while lights blinked on and off in the background. Meanwhile, a flashy banner displayed news that wasn't good enough to actually get a segment on their show. Warren switched off the TV, then walked over to a door, and opened it. Inside, there was an extremely small bathroom. He stepped inside, then closed the door.

This isn't the final version. If you complain, I'll kill you.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Oh God! Not Gifboom!

In case, you haven't heard, Gifboom is like a photo sharing site, but you take movies and turn them into gifs. That's terrible! I don't want .gifs to go back into style! They really give me a bad vibe because I hated it back when sites were covered in stupid spinning buttons and stuff. I think anyone else who's seen that era of web design can agree.
All I can say, is that I really hope that this is just a passing fad, because if it catches on, I might have to throw away my Wi-Fi router. And that's a pretty big sacrifice because it means giving up Myst Online and YouTube, y'know?

Friday, 22 June 2012

MO:ULagain Interface

If you've ever played Myst Online, you'll know that the interface is a bit clunky. There was a thread a while back on the forums where some people had drawn their own interfaces for the game, and it inspired me to make my own:
That's it. I'm thinking that I might want to make it a bit more simplistic, but I think that this is a good start.

UPDATE (24/06/2012): Here's the second version:

UPDATE (25/06/2012): Here's the third version:

UPDATE (28/06/2012): Here's the fourth (and greatly changed) version:

UPDATE (02/07/2012): Here's the fifth version, which looks a lot more like the third version:

UPDATE (11/07/2012): Here's the sixth version:


Thursday, 7 June 2012

Saturday, 2 June 2012

Happy Birthday, Blog!

Today is my blog's first birthday! At least, I think so. I can't remember if I did my first post on the day I created it... oh well. I can't even remember what inspired me to create it- I remember that I made my YouTube account about a month earlier, so maybe that had something to do with it. Oh well, doesn't matter. It's hard to believe it's been an entire year! Well, not really, but I thought its actual birthday was on the 16th, which would've been good so I could make its birthday coincide with the 100th post (this is the 93rd), but yeah. Blah. Here's to another great year of The Nature Of Our Universe! (I'm starting to get tired of that name)

By the way, I should have a new video on my YouTube channel soonish.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

The Day The Oxen Died


The day the oxen died, everyone mourned them, and buried themselves in sadness, and they never came out.
The next day, the oxen came back to life, and they saw that everyone had buried themselves, and thus the oxen buried themselves in sadness, and they never came out.
Until the next day, when they came out.
But then they died again.
Then, the penguins were deeply saddened by the loss of their oxen, so they visited an abandoned genetic engineering lab.
They created a new species of super oxen, which had wings, rockets, and high intelligence.
This new species went on a rampage, and destroyed all of the species on earth.
Following this, they buried themselves in sadness, and they never came out.
Until the next day, when they came out.
Then, they dug up all the other species who had buried themselves in sadness, and they ate them.
Afterwards, the super oxen got very hungry, so they began to eat each other, until there was only one left.
He buried himself in sadness, and he never came out.
Until the next day, when he declared himself king of the world, and his reign continued forever.
Until the next day, when he died.

Monday, 21 May 2012

Yet Another Thing You Should Never Do

I was on a trip to Ottawa recently for nationals in the Musicfest Band Competitions. It had the ability to go well, and for most people it did- but not for me. Thanks to sneezing people, I spent most of the time sick (I felt like I had a fever, but according to others I didn't). On the second night, my hotel room was inhabited by a couple of visitors. But that's not important. At about 10:30, emanating from somewhere, I'm guessing the huge speaker in the ceiling, something that sounded vaguely like this but sort of like it was produced by a cheap 90s synthesizer began. The dialogue between me and the visitors went something like this:

Visitor 1: What's that sound?


Me (calmly): Well, when I was at the Sheraton Centre in Toronto, I heard that sound, which turned out to be the fire alarm.


(pause)


Visitor 2: Run!!!


And thus, we ran. Sort of. I had enough time to grab my wallet, my iPod, and my bag, but I was worried because I didn't have time to grab my charger, my concert shoes, and most importantly the two lego cars I'd brought along. But anyway. With my nasty sickness, I had to hassle down nine flights of stairs. And when I finally got to the bottom, I was forced to wait while nothing much happened. While I was waiting, I saw this:

Note that I'm not in this photo, nor was I involved in its taking. Also, disregard the peculiar mask.
Yeah. So apparently the poor guy was caught in the middle of a shower. Anyway, eventually we found out that a sensor had been tripped somehow. I'm not sure, just that it was a false alarm. So then we trudged upstairs, and finally I sat down again. A few minutes later, I went to sleep.

About a day later, I went on twitter, and after a bit of searching, I found this tweet:


Well done, you ditzy idiot. Did you know that the city of Ottawa recently tightened regulations on intentionally doing that sort of thing? I mean, it's easy enough for you to get framed without the tweet, but now all the police have to do is search "ottawa hotel alarm", and they'll find out who did it. "Duh, yeah, they'll never think of that! Haha!"
And either this person isn't an avid twitter user, or they're ashamed of what they did because I tweeted them telling them that they made a sick person scramble around a building when they probably should've been visiting a doctor. Not to mention the kid in five degree weather in his underpants.

In conclusion, due to the increased amount of hits my blog is getting (over 5000 at the moment), I hope a police officer finds this post, because idiots like these need to think before they act. Because that's the sort of thing only a drunk person would do (which they may well have been).

Think of what your school would do if they found out about this, "NBateni". I can see the tweet now:

#schoolmemories getting expelled cuz of fire alarm lol

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Oops...

I was visiting my friend's house the other day to see the hovercraft he's been working on. He turned on the propellor, and turned up the speed, when suddenly there was a big flash and this happened:








It was pretty cool, in retrospect, but it meant I didn't get to have a ride!
But man, it was impressive. There were pieces of plexiglass that had been blasted over six feet away. I'm glad I was standing back...

By the way, I think I need a new font for my posts. Perhaps Times New Roman. You can't go wrong with that. It's just that the current one is kind of hard to read in large quantities.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

WWW

Who invented that acronym, anyway? It's terrible. I mean, try to think of any other acronym where the original is easier to say than the letter. Try comparing "doubleyou doubleyou doubleyou" to "world wide web". Why does there even need to be an acronym. In fact, why does it exist, anyway? Whose idea was it to have "WWW" in front of everything? I mean really, the only people who bother to put useless junk in front of words are french people. And even then, it's just a few letters that determine what gender a particular word is.
But anyway, I got a new microphone. It's known as the "Blue Snowball", and it's very good. I was going to put up an audio recording-ish thing to my YouTube channel just to test it out, but iPhoto decided not to work, so now I'm just sort of going to grump around until it starts working again.

Also, how come I never use indentations when I'm writing in my blog? I do it everywhere else.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Drum Test

I uploaded a new video to my YouTube channel. It's a sort of drum loop. Take a look:





Yeah. The end.

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

The Book Of Atrus Is A Comic?!

http://mystcomic.smackjeeves.com/

I cannot fathom how much better than Manga this is. Go read it! New pages released regularly!

The author intends to take it to the very end. That means, age 37, Gehn, Myst- everything. Personally, I'm excited. You know why? Because this won't be the first Myst comic, but it'll be the first good one... (ahem) Book of Black Ships (ahem)

EDIT (02/05/2012): I recently noticed that it's tagged "Manga". I disagree. If you think it's Manga, you're wrong.

EDIT (31/08/2012): Nevermind. I guess it might be, but I have no idea. Also, I no longer hate manga. Well, I still find some of it annoying, but not all, y'know?

Friday, 27 April 2012

A Really Big Dandelion

I was out for a walk yesterday, when I saw a most intriguing dandelion! It looked like it was sort of several dandelions fused into one. Take a look:

Monday, 23 April 2012

Oh, How I Wish Thou Would Post

So it's been six months since the last post on mystmovie.com. This is a long time. You see, it used to be that they'd post quite often, once a month at the very least. But I'm pretty sure this is the longest silence since... well, ever. And it's especially annoying, since the comment string sort of has a bug in it (you're welcome) and we had this sort of game of trying to reach 1000 comments, which had been going on for a while. And we kept asking them to post, or at least say hi, when it happened. Well, it's been two days, and still nothing.
I think it's bad for our health. For a while, we were sort of in mourning, and people kept making these posts of depression and hatred. Then the notion came up that we were all just one being in an airless void, and had constructed a huge fantasy world to escape its own loneliness. Then it went to being all optimistic and "no news is good news!", and stuff. And I think there were some really long discussions about linking books and quantum theory.
But c'mon! We're desperate! It can't be that hard to at least say "Yo what's up, we're still alive!". Arggity.

Friday, 20 April 2012

Advertisements I Truly Hate

The following are ads which I see frequently, and absolutely loathe.

Now, obviously this one is just a feeble attempt to make something original and associable. But, as companies usually do, they just ended up making it really annoying. And this one is especially bad, because it uses a hideously overused joke (spell it! "i-t"), as well as an infuriating catchphrase at the end. And honestly, whenever I hear that, it makes me want to go on a rampage. But what really gets me is that this is a YouTube commercial. You see, I watch the online news show SourceFed (which is great, by the way) on a regular basis, which means I easily watch this stupid excuse for an advertisement 2-3 times a day. Arg.




The one I actually see before viewing a video is quite a bit shorter than this one. I believe they cut out the "he cares if I can make ends meet", "and find a good job", "Jack's vision is in good hands", and "I'm Tom Mulcair. As a Cabinet Minister, then as a member of Jack's team, I've always fought for you."
Now, the ad doesn't make me feel quite as homicidal as the other one, but it's still pretty irritating after the 200th time I've seen it. For example, the people they have saying stuff just seem sort of- phoney, in a way. If you understand what I mean. But the main thing I don't like about it is the god awful music they have in it. Mostly the bit at the end where they have a clapping track. It just annoys me when songs which would otherwise be tolerable add clapping to it. In fact, the only music I can think of that sounds decent is Clapping Music. And all the stupid things about this advertisement are only made up for by the fact that this Tom guy has a cool beard.

Speaking of clapping music, it's actually quite interesting. What Reich did, was he created a basic pattern, which can be heard at the beginning, and then one set of clappers either moves a beat forward or backward. I can't remember which. You (whoever you are), should look at some Steve Reich (likely in the related videos of that link). It's all very interesting.

Monday, 16 April 2012

The Second Coolest Thing In The Universe



Ok, good, half the stuff in the Myst series makes perfect sense now.
Unfortunately, a religious argument seems to have spawned in the comments of that video. I really hate when people get into those- especially on the internet. Because in a vast majority of the cases, neither side has any idea what they're talking about.

Christian: this is fake god did not create this
Atheist: Obviously your just making this stuff up. You don't have any real evidence.
Christian: oh yeah? well this book says its true so im right!
Atheist: Just because it's in a book, doesn't mean it's true.
Christian: well u get all ur info from science textbooks!!! admit it you lost.
Atheist: No, I haven't lost. You see, if you understood the basic laws of physics, you'd get it.
Christian: you probably dont even no those!! besides those were made by the devil anyway
Atheist: The "devil" is obviously just an excuse to disprove everything you hear when you can't bring any real evidence to the table.
Christian: well, as a christian i can tell you that god exists.
Atheist: As an Atheist, I can tell you he doesn't.
Christian: YOUR WRONG!
Atheist: I think you need to calm down.
Christian: GOD EXISTS PERIOD!


Hmm... yeah. I think I may have gotten a bit carried away there. But you get my point (I hope). Anyway, isn't that cool? The future is upon us!


Saturday, 14 April 2012

ADBMM

There's a new event coming to the cavern! It's called ADBMM, or
April
Discoveries
Bring
May
MYSTeries,
is a month long event which is supposed to bring Myst fans back to the cavern (and, with any hope, bring that CAVCON meter up a bit).
It's also known as Cavern Mysterium, so basically, it's like Mysterium... but online. There even a Q&A with Cyan Worlds CEO Rand Miller (and his brother Robyn was supposed to be there, but cancelled; apparently he's busy getting The Immortal Augustus Gladstone on the market). I'm not sure what else is happening, but it sure sounds fun.
Anyway, why am I posting about this, you might be wondering. There have been tons of MO:UL events that I didn't talk about. Well, good sir. You see; I designed the logo for this year. Take a look:

I think it turned out pretty good; I mean, it's not perfect but considering this is my first time doing this sort of thing... yeah. But anyway, there is it. For more info see this thread.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Larissa's Dream Haven

So for a while now, there's been a large monster house going up near where I live. Literally, it actually looks like a monster. I mean, it has these two big windows, then a series of doors-
Anyway. So recently, they put up a gate. Well, fine. More pretentious stuff. Anyway, they put a little piece of wood in it, I would imagine the name of their house, and it reads:
LARISSA'S DREAM HAVEN





Ok, really? Of all the things you could name your house (as if anyone even does that anymore), you chose THAT? Bah!
And really, that's basically an invitation for vandalism and ridicule. I mean, you could wake up one morning, and find this:


I'm actually really tempted to do that, but I wouldn't.

And really, it just seems so out of place, even more so than in an average city. But amongst the countryside, it's just so... stuffish. Here, I'll show you:

Oh my goodness! It's beautiful!

Look at the big hill!


Good thing there's no hokey "Larissa's Dream Haven" sign! ...oh yeah.

Name your house something else.