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Other Reviews

DNF Video Game: The Medium

THE MEDIUM

Discover a dark mystery only a medium can solve. Explore the real world and the spirit world at the same time. Use your psychic abilities to solve puzzles spanning both worlds, uncover deeply disturbing secrets, and survive encounters with The Maw – an entity born from an unspeakable tragedy.

The Medium is a third-person psychological horror game that features an innovative dual-reality gameplay, unique art style inspired by painter Zdzisław Beksiński, and original soundtrack co-composed by Arkadiusz Reikowski and Akira Yamaoka.


In my sometimes less-than-humble opinion, there are two kinds of games in the world: Game-games and games. Look, I’m joking, well, kind of. Let me explain: there are games where you actually have what seems like free choice. If you want to go all in and fight the high level characters, you most certainly can have at it and get humbled, like the zealous adventurer you are. Unfortunately, The Medium is the opposite of that: a walking simulator that tells what button to push and when to push it, where to walk and when to walk and also when to talk. I don’t like it. I want to run, jump, slash and meander. I want action and intensity, not to aimlessly walk in circles looking for a queue to push the X button.

Is anybody out there? Just nod if you can hear me.

Most interactive travels in the game present you with a setting viewed with a fixed, third-person camera as you walk from room-to-room and a Resident Evil type inventory system with the ability to combine items for puzzle solving and possibly more.

Something that did particularly catch my eye and make me go “hmmmm . . . ” was the fact that when looking in the below mirror, there was a strip on the rug that seemed to twinkle and glisten, no matter which angle I moved the camera, which gave me evidence that it wasn’t the mirror causing the anomaly:

See that funky strip on the rug?

That’s not saying The Medium is a bad game, it’s just not for me. I was stunned by some of the visuals that were displayed before the split screen duel-reality play, then the visual appeal seemed degraded ( which I vaguely remember an article confirming that degradation ). I played for a decent 3 hours on the game up until I reached the duel reality view at the camp. The whole premise of the game, being the main character is a medium named Marriane that exists in two different realities at once. Just after the start of the game, we are led to a funeral home and we meet Jack in the dark reality, that has recently died in the normal reality, then we are led to some kind of camp for investigations. This is where I stopped playing the game. I won’t go into any more details about the story, while the elements of the story did seem mildly interesting, it wasn’t good enough to keep me rattling my joystick and looking for a queue to hit X without it being dreadful and a chore. Luckily this game came with my Xbox Game Pass subscription. No love lost, no love found.

Recommendation:

★★☆☆☆ The Medium, an Microsoft Xbox Exclusive gets two stars out of five for lack of excitement and personal preference, however seems solid enough for story-game enjoyers to savor. If you want some, from what I saw non-wretched and light on actual vulgarities like lack of jump scares and gore then it may work even better for you in a search for a psychological survival horror game with class.

Intro video w/ credits

Guys and gals, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.

Categories
Music On Art Resources

Friday Fun Trifecta #6

If you remember a while back, we did a segment here on SDMcKinley.com called Friday Fun Links. Fun links have evolved into Friday Fun Trifecta, where I will feature one thing of each – music, book and visual arts. Welcome to Friday Fun Trifecta #6, in appreciation for artwork. I’m a bit late on this post – and, as someone once told me, “If you can’t get here on time, just get here when you can.”

Bonus:

Explore the legend of Dimebag Darrel via his very own guitar vault. Artwork in the form of a musical instrument:

Music:

[ Lyrics @ Genuis.com ]

Book:

The Kill Riff by David J. Schow
Quote from Amazon preview of The Kill Riff by David J. Schow

I picked this book, sort of randomly, ( with the exception of the heaviness of metal, since we are being so metal today, to theme this post ) from a nicely put together book about book about books titled Paperbacks from Hell: The Twisted History of ’70s and ’80s Horror Fiction by Grady Hendrix. I discovered this through a local book store and instead of being an arse and looking up the price on Amazon, in turn ordering it from there: I, instead paid tribute to the store and purchased it from them for helping me discover it. PSA: Don’t be one of those arses:

Categories
Book Reviews

Review: Saltblood by T.C. Parker

😮 This is a marvelous cover. Absolutely stunning.

Blurb:

A remote island. A group of prisoners. And an evil as old as time.

Robin didn’t mean to break the law. Didn’t know at first what law she’d broken. And now she’s on her way to Salt Rock – a new-model prison for a new kind of criminal, way out in the remote Northern Isles of Scotland.

On Salt Rock, she’ll meet other prisoners like her – men and women from all over the world, spirited away from the lives they knew for crimes they didn’t know they were committing.

She’ll uncover the complex web of conspiracy that connects them all, confronting some of the darkness of her own past in the process.

And she’ll come face to face, finally, with an evil as old as the land itself.

It’s hell in those waters.


Books with certain qualities, elements or style can be more appealing, of course to readers when they match up with the reader’s expectations and personal interests. Saltblood by T.C. Parker is one of those books, for me that not only matched up with expectations and interests, it’s intimate, genuine and original: it’s one of those stories that sticks on my side like blood sucking leech, stuck for life in a completely well way.

Great! I can eat chicken wings while reading again. 🤠
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Resources

MiniBook Haul 12.5.2020

These two books were recommended by the thrift store. I have no idea when I will get around to reading them. My main reason for posting the books is simply to see if someone has something to say regarding the content. I know nothing about them and have neither seen the books before or heard of the authors. Just a little randomosity while waiting for food. 😃

Guys, until next time – may you find all the happiness that your life can fit in it’s happy spot – S.D. McKinley.

Categories
Book Reviews On Art Other Reviews

Graphic Novel Review: Rogue Planet

[ Image Source: ComiXology.com ] Just amazing artwork. If you click this picture, it takes you to a source to buy the individual comics that are available for release now, unlike this graphic novel, that will release on 02 Mar 2021.

I completed this as an ARC in exchange for an honest review via NetGalley.com.

Have you ever seen a comic running through a tablet that looks 3D? Holy Cannoli. Nonstop, dropkick, knock your face off, extra-pulpy SciFi monster-butter on top of SciFi bread with space jelly of whatever flavor you want, here with Rogue Planet. I really enjoyed this one! 🤨

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On Art Resources

Dec. 2020 Book Haul

Welcome to Book Haul post for December 2020, here at SDMcKinley.com. The intention here is to spread good news about . . . you guessed it – books, art, love, peace and tranquility! Many other things besides reading take a place at my table, which means I’m a slow reader and that every book on this list doesn’t always get a review straight away. Don’t ask me what determines that and Don’t even ask me about my eBook Haul 🤣, as these are all physical books.

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Book Reviews On Art Other Reviews

Review: The Horror! The Horror!: Comic Books the Government Didn’t Want You to Read!

The Horror! The Horror! uncovers a rare treasury of some of the most important and neglected stories in American literature—the pre-Code horror comics of the 1950s. These outrageous comic book images, censored by Congress in an infamous televised U.S. Senate subcommittee investigating juvenile delinquency in 1954, have rarely been seen since they were first published—and are revealed once again in all of their eye-popping glory. Jim Trombetta, in his commentary and informative text, provides a detailed history and context for these stories and their creators, spinning a tale of horror and government censorship as scary as the stories themselves. [ Source: Amazon ]
WARNING #1: SPOLIERS IN THE FORM OF PICTURES
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Other Reviews

Review: Creepshow Animated Special

A man determined to stay alive alone on a deserted island no matter what the cost and A teen whose road trip includes a visit to the gravest show on earth.

IMDB

In a two part special Shudder presents the Creepshow Animated Special directed by Greg Nicotero ( known for The Walking Dead ).

Mild, even.
Categories
Music Resources

Misc Miscellany

Happy Tuesday guys. My links itch is itching quite badly today, especially after skipping Friday Fun links last Friday. How is your week going, so far? Mine is going quite smooth. Thank ye! Enjoy some re-posts, below:

For the softer side of metal, with a cover of Floods (Pantera) by Jamie Jensen ( I believe anyone can enjoy this ).

Categories
Book Reviews On Art Other Reviews

Review: The Crow: Midnight Legends Vol. 1: Dead Time

After a ten-year hiatus, James O’Barr returned to The Crow with Dead Time, a story he envisioned as a new Crow film. A tale of grief, reincarnation, and long-sought vengeance, Dead Time is adapted by John Wagner and illustrated by Alexander Maleev. ( Extracted from Amazon )

Let me start this off by stating I absolutely love The Crow. Ever since I saw the film, it forever changed the way I knew a movie could be and is undoubtably my favorite movie of all time. I recently purchased it on Blu-ray and watched the special feature interview with James O’Barr, the creator of the original comic book. I found the interview quite interesting. You may view it below:

Before I read this digitally, on Kindle Unlimited I was largely unfamiliar with James O’Barr’s work ( other than how it is portrayed in the movie ), but this time O’Barr is only writing the story and leaves the script to John Wagner, the art to Alexander Maleev and the lettering to Dan Burr.