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Archive for April, 2007

Boris Yeltsin Dead

Monday, April 23rd, 2007


MOSCOW, Russia (AP) — Former President Boris Yeltsin, who engineered the final collapse of the Soviet Union and pushed Russia to embrace democracy and a market economy, has died, a Kremlin official said Monday. He was 76.

Kremlin spokesman Alexander Smirnov confirmed Yeltsin’s death, but gave no cause or further information. The Interfax news agency cited an unidentified medical source as saying he had died of heart failure.

Although Yeltsin pushed Russia to embrace democracy and a market economy, many of its citizens will remember him mostly for presiding over the country’s steep decline.

He was a contradictory figure, rocketing to popularity in the Communist era on pledges to fight corruption — but proving unable, or unwilling, to prevent the looting of state industry as it moved into private hands during his nine years as Russia’s first freely elected president.

He steadfastly defended freedom of the press, but was a master at manipulating the media.

He amassed as much power as possible in his office — then gave it all up in a dramatic New Year’s address at the end of 1999.

Yeltsin’s greatest moments came in bursts. He stood atop a tank to resist an attempted coup in August 1991, and spearheaded the peaceful end of the Soviet state on Dec. 25 of that year.

Ill with heart problems, and facing possible defeat by a Communist challenger in his 1996 re-election bid, he marshaled his energy and sprinted through the final weeks of the campaign. The challenge transformed the shaky convalescent into the spry, dancing candidate.

But Yeltsin was an inconsistent reformer who never took much interest in the mundane tasks of day-to-day government, and nearly always blamed Russia’s myriad problems on his subordinates.

Yeltsin greatly damaged his democratic credentials by using force to solve political disputes, though he claimed his actions were necessary to keep the country together.

He sent tanks and troops in October 1993 to flush armed, hard-line supporters out of a hostile Russian parliament after they had sparked violence in the streets of Moscow. And in December 1994, Yeltsin launched a war against separatists in the southern republic of Chechnya.

Tens of thousands of people were killed in the Chechnya conflict, and a defeated and humiliated Russian army withdrew at the end of 1996. The war solved nothing — and Russian troops resumed fighting in the breakaway region in fall 1999.

In the final years of his presidency, Yeltsin was dogged by health problems and often seemed out of touch. He retreated regularly to his country residence outside Moscow and stayed away from the Kremlin for days, even weeks at a time. As the country lurched from crisis to crisis, its leader appeared increasingly absent.

Yet Yeltsin had made a stunning debut as Russian president. He introduced many basics of democracy, guaranteeing the rights to free speech, private property and multiparty elections, and opening the borders to trade and travel. Though full of bluster, he revealed more of his personal life and private doubts than any previous Russian leader had.

“The debilitating bouts of depression, the grave second thoughts, the insomnia and headaches in the middle of the night, the tears and despair … the hurt from people close to me who did not support me at the last minute, who didn’t hold up, who deceived me — I have had to bear all of this,” he wrote in his 1994 memoir, “The Struggle for Russia.”

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

He lived a decade longer than anoyone thought he would.

Best Animated Film Rnd 2!

Monday, April 23rd, 2007





The funny thing is bracket 4 contains two films I utterly can not stand.

Well what do you know. Now I own 2 Wiis

Sunday, April 22nd, 2007

Funny story. I get up to go pick up my Pokemon preorders. I trade in a bunch of games. I have an edge card that gives me +10% on trade ins. But as these were being applied towards Pokemon, i got an extra 20% on trade in. 30% extra credit! FF XII netted me $20. It sells new nowadays for 19.99! HA! I had over 110$ in credit so I got the games paid off, the strat guide (with an EXTRA 20% off since I bought both Poke games mainly because it was half off and I contributed to it. I had enough credit to get TC: 2nd Opnion for free!

I went to Best Buy as I saw a bunch of cars and I wanted to get ACT by Al Gore as it was on sale and an extra copy would go to a school when I bought it. Plus I had a 10% off all games and movies coupon I used, and a $20 reward certificate. I was going to get Bust a Move for the Wii and AIT for $30 after tax. Seems there was a line outside. This guy is like, Here’s your Wii ticket. Yopu’re lucky. You’re the last one. I was like “What?” Seems they got 24 Wii’s in today. I ended up giving my ticket to a little kid because hey, i don’t need another one right? I just bought one Friday. His parents were crazy happy.

Then I walked into Target to get some shampoo. Guess what? They had a ton of Wii’s too! Well, 4. I just shrugged and said, “Okay. I get it. Someone really wants me to get another one.” So I did. I also know where there are another FIFTY nearby me. So I have TWO wiis now.

Although I am very much a wheeler dealer/profit kinda guy, I will sell this Wii at cost to whoever wants/needs one. I hate being getting ripped off, so this is my way of sticking it to Ebay’ers. I got lucking getting a Wii below MSRP with a ton of goodies on Ebay. VERY lucky. If more than one of you in the area wants one, email me and I’ll tell you where to go.

What do you know, I own a Wii

Friday, April 20th, 2007

1 Wii -MSRP = $250
Zelda TP -MSRP = $50
Excitetruck - MSRP =$50
1 extra Wimote-MSRP =$40
1 Extra Numchuk-MSRP =$20

Total MSRP =410
Total MSRP with approximate MN sales tax =438.70

What I paid? $385

God Bless Ebay. Plus it comes with all original reciepts so I can trade in the unopened Excitetruck for SMB or Tramua Center.

Summer and John - I’ll bring it to your moving party since I know you both really want one.


Friday, April 20th, 2007

I’m looking at the Wii’s Virtual Console this morning after talking with Mark B. last weekend about what’s on there currently worth getting.

There are 78 games currently available. Here is a list of the games. The ones in BOLD are ones I would buy.

Donkey Kong
Legend of Zelda
Mario Bros.
Solomon’s Key
Wario’s Woods
Donkey Kong Jr.
Ice Hockey
Super Mario Bros.
Urban Champion
Ice Climber
Kid Icarus
Kirby’s Adventure
Legend of Kage
Elevator Action
Tecmo Bowl
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Street Fighter II: The World Warrior
Super Castlevania IV
R-Type III: The Third Lightning

Legend of Zelda: A Link to the PastThe Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
Contra III: The Alien Wars
Super Mario World
Donkey Kong Country
Super Ghouls ‘n Ghosts
Romance of the Three Kingdoms IV: Wall of Fire
Super Mario 64
Mario Kart 64
Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of TimeThe Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
Star Fox 64
Altered Beast
Sonic The Hedgehog
Ecco the Dolphin
Golden Axe
Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine
Gunstar Heroes
Space Harrier II
ToeJam & Earl
Bonanza Bros.
Comix Zone
Gain Ground
Streets of Rage
Bio-Hazard Battle
Sword of Vermilion
Sonic Spinball
Beyond Oasis
Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle
Virtua Fighter 2
Bomberman ‘93
Bonk’s Adventure
Super Star Soldier
Victory Run
Alien Crush
Military Madness
Dungeon Explorer
Soldier Blade
Moto Roader
New Adventure Island
Chew Man Fu
Double Dungeons
Dragon’s Curse
Bonk’s Revenge

There’s a TON of great Sega Genesis games like Sword of Vermillion on there. WHy didn’t I bold it? Because you can get the Sega Genesis collection with almost all the VC Sega Genesis games on it for 19.99 flat, instead of 8 bucks per game. Oy.

That’s a total of 17 downloadable games too. That approximately $100. Ouch.

Here’s also a list of the future releases on tap. Again, ones I would buy are in bold.

Duck Hunt
Hogan’s Alley
Mach Rider
Mighty Bomb Jack
Pro Wrestling
Wild Gunman
Zelda II: The Adventure of Link
Final Fight
Gradius III
Kirby Super Star
Kirby’s Dream Land 3
Legend of the Mystical Ninja
Street Fighter II Turbo
Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars
Super Metroid
Zombies Ate My Neighbors
Alien Storm
Ghouls ‘n Ghosts
Kid Chameleon
Shining in the Darkness
Streets of Rage 2
ToeJam & Earl in Panic on Funkotron
Wonder Boy in Monster World
Battle Lode Runner
Bonk 3: Bonk’s Big Adventure

That’s another 7 games. A whopping total of 22 virtual console games I’d buy. 132 dollars in retrogaming.

At the same time, here’s a list of what I would buy for the actual Wii, including pre-releases:

1. Pokemon Battle Revolution
2. Trauma Center
3. Disaster
4. Space Station Tycoon
5. Duck Hunt
6. Alien Syndrome
7. Bust a Move
8. Super Monkey Ball
10. Super Smash Bros Brawl
11. Sadness
12. Zelda: TP

12 Games, or a little more than half what I would buy for the VC.

This of course raises the question of just how much of the Wii’s business will actually be Virtual games vs $50 dollar modern games. A great deal of what is coming out for the Wii doesn’t interest me, mainly because it’s Mario stuff, platformers, or ports. The games that really interest me are the Wii specific titles, or more importantly, games designed to really work with the Numchuck.

I’ve been looking at the Xbox 360 as they too have a strong Downloadable games section and some really nice RPG’s and the like. PS3 = crap. No need to discuss that.

Sadly, what you get on the 360 are not the original games but “upgrade versions.” That ruins it a bit for me. Still what I would get for that are

TMNT Arcade
Heavy Weapon
Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3
Street Fighter II
Smash TV

9 games. A fraction of what interests me on the WII, and to be honest, TMNT Arcade is the only strong seller of the 9. The VC just destroys the Xbox Live Arcade…for now. So at this moment in time the Retrograder’s console of choice is the WII…if you can find one.

Animated Tourney: Last Bit o’ Rnd 1

Friday, April 20th, 2007





 I have to admite this is the weakest set in all of Round 1 to me.


Thursday, April 19th, 2007

1. I beat Raiden III yesterday. My first game, I got to level 4. There’s only 7 levels. For a shooter, it’s pretty easy, but it’s a lot of fun. First really good gameI’ve played in forever.

2. New cell phone arrived. I set the default ring tone to “One Missed Call.” It’ll be amusing to see if anyone recognizes it.

3. I am so happy it’s Spring. I’ve gone running every day this week.

4. I keep forgetting to scan in the last Poke-folklore column or the MMORPG Nyogtha columns. Dammit.

5. Bunnies kept me up all night. Mainly just Baby. Why can’t they all be as well behaved as Mr. Chewie Biteums?

Animated Film Tourney, Round 1, Part 3

Thursday, April 19th, 2007

I figured I’d leave Weds free and use today and tomorrow to finish off round 1. There’s a lot of Disney and Ghlibli this part as well.






So this was my lunch hour

Wednesday, April 18th, 2007

1. I go to buy some stuff at Target. Bathroom Cleaner, shampoo, sheets to put on my bed when I’m not home that the rabbits can burrow in/shred instead of my silk ones. Stuff like that. I get out to my car and see that something is leaking. A lot. Turns out the head to my bathroom cleaning stuff is not on the bottle anymore somehow. So I go and exchange everything. My god, was that a long process.

2.I drop by EB to pick up my copy of Raiden III and put a deposit down on 6 other games. Alas one game, Taito Legends 2, is not pre-orderable (is that even a word?). The last game I pre-ordered was Persona 3. The guy goes “I’ve been really interested in that, but I’ve never played the others. Do you think I need to play them?”

15 minutes later of extolling the virtues of Persona and why anyone with a PS1 should play them or simply commit suicide by throwing themselves into a pit o’ crocs, the guy at the counter is like “I’m goin’ to Ebay.” It’s nice to know something video game wise can still get me passionate. I think i know what I’m playing after Raiden III…

Call of Cthulhu: The Flash Cartoon/Video Game!

Wednesday, April 18th, 2007

Holy Fuck! It’s real and created by Warner Bros! It’s called “Arcane” But it’s got Cthulhu, Azathoth, Nyarlathotep, Dagon, Yog-Sothoth, Shub-Niggurath, the Necronomicon, Abdul Al-Hazard, and the entire HPL Mythology!

 It’s a combination of Flash Cartoons and Puzzle style gaming. Pretty Neat

Uou can see the first 8 episodes online at http://www2.warnerbros.com/web/arcane/home.jsp?frompage=games

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