Tuesday, December 30, 2008


The saddest game story of 2008 is that of "Little Big Planet:" The great little title that inexplicably became annointed the savior of the struggling Playstation 3 and, when said struggles unsurprisingly continued, got counted as a "sales dissapointment." You can call this a post-mortem, but I'd prefer to think of it as a reflection.

I'm on Internet TV once again!

The Escapist has once again given me a slot for a movie review on their show, this time involving "Twilight." Now you know why I didn't do that "on my own." Check out the show here:

I come in at about 5:45, but I do reccomend you check out the whole thing - they're covering the Wii version of "Dead Rising," and there's a Zero Punctuation preview for what looks like a Prince of Persia review. Fun!

Oh, and hey... just thought of something: This is the first time I've had one of these up for something that was new and revelent... so, if anyone out there is feeling helpful, it might be fun to go and toss some links to this in the direction of your favorite movie-discussion forum, chatroom, message-board, whatever - particularly ones where "Twilight" is being discussed or is likely to be discussed. The IMDB board for the film, for example, would be a good idea. I'd be interested to see what the actual feedback on something "fresh" is.


Monday, December 22, 2008



The Screwattack.com Gaming 1337 awards have moved on to the finals, and thanks to all of YOU... I made it in. "Game OverThinker" is one of the FINAL THREE nominees for "Best Gaming Show;" alongside Mega64 and Unforgotten Realms.

WTF? Look, I'm not going to put on some bullshit humble-face and pretend like I don't bust my ass on these things or that I don't think I do a damn good job most of the time but... seriously? The HELL am I doing nominated alongside Mega64 and Unforgotten Realms??

Anyway, this DOES mean I've got to gently ask you all to once again head over to... http://screwattack.com/Vote

...and vote for GAME OVERTHINKER for "Best Gaming Show" (and whoever else you like for everything else.) Thank you all so much, what a great Christmas gift I genuinely was not expecting.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

EPISODE SIXTEEN: "Holiday Show!"

It's that time of year, kids. When entertainers dash off quicker-than-usual Christmas/etc themed shows so they can get back to the relative joys of.. well, relatives. And shopping. Yay.

This installment is sort of a video game shopper's manual for the season's game-buying non-gamers. Seemed like the helpful thing to do. I've designed it to be sent out (hopefully) to anyone you think could use such information. As such, be prepared for certain deviations from the normal additude; including but not limited to: No profanity, slower-pace, less rapid-fire jokes, fewer inside references and copious abuse of an only subtly-game-themed Virtual Fireplace loop.

Happy Holidays!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

EPISODE FIFTEEN: "The Politics of Gaming"

Least imaginative title ever, I realize. But I hope the content-proper makes up for it. Hey, YouTube? Y'know what'd be awesome? Letting people put non-YouTube hyperlinks in annotations. Just a thought.

Summation: "How would YOUR favorite gaming icon have voted?" I like to think of this one as 95% hit-baiting jokes about whom fictional characters might've voted for, 4.5% newsworthy griping and 0.05% thought-provoking discussion of political themes present in games you may not have thought of. Enjoy!

Monday, November 24, 2008


I don't know which makes me feel like a bigger attention-whore: The constant self-promotion or the tactlessness of double-posting it into both blogs. BUT, that's the game.

ScrewAttack.com has informed me (and, I presume, many many many others) that I am elligible to be nominated for their Gaming 1337 ("leet") awards. So... if y'all dig my stuff, howzabout voting for me? ;)

Here's how it works: Go to this page:
http://screwattack.com/Nominations Where you'll find a form with multiple fields in which to nominate folks/projects by their name and website URL for various awards. "Game OverThinker," for example, would best fit into the "best independent gaming show" category. Fill out each field (or only the ones on which you have an opinion) with the name and URL (my URL here is http://gameoverthinker.blogspot.com/ and the name is "Game OverThinker" remember,) then your name and email below and click "submit." Apparently you can do this once a day... I bet that would be a fun thing to do ;)

Thanks again for the support.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I'm on Internet TV again!

Hey, lookit that! "The Escapist Show" is airing another of my reviews, this time for "Max Payne." What swell guys.

Check it out here: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/the-escapist-show/421-Episode-Four-Mirrors-Edge

I'm in there at about 6:05, but you should watch the whole thing because they're good guys doing a good job. It's a little intimidating, to be honest, to be sharing vid-space with even a TRAILER for Zero Punctuation. I mean... who the hell am I, right?

As before, if you dig me doing this, let The Escapist know you'd like to see me more often:

Tuesday, November 4, 2008



To be seen above: Trailer spoofs! Bellyaching! My actual personage! Explanations of where the hell I went! Punch-Out!! Parkour! Bad jokes! And even MORE shameless plugging for my appearance on The Escapist Show!


Yeah, wow.

Here's Episode #2 of "The Escapist Show," with your's truly popping in at the tail end for a review of "Eagle Eye." I come in at about 7:30, but you should watch the whole thing. These guys are working hard, and doing a fine job:


And hey, if you like the show, me-on-the-show and you want to let The Escapist know about it, I'm sure they'd be glad for the feedback: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/contact/

Friday, October 31, 2008


Wow, this is cool. I've had to wait awhile to tell anyone about this, but now that I can I'm still pretty overwhelmed by it.

"The Escapist" (http://www.escapistmagazine.com/) is best known these days as the website home of video-game critic Yahtzee Croshaw's hugely popular "Zero Punctuation" weekly series. But it's ALSO a full-blown webzine of it's own with lots of other content. As of this week, that content now includes a weekly gaming/geek-culture news series called "The Escapist Show." You should be watching, it's awesome.

Anyway, "The Escapist Show" features along with it's regular content and contributors short humor segments provided by independent web guys, and next week (episode #2, tentatively planned to air on November 4th) the contributor will be... ME! I'll be doing a movie review - can't tell ya which movie yet. Cool, no?

I encourage everyone to check this out... ESPECIALLY all you Game OverThinker fans, since it's YOUR enthusiam for my goofy content that's had alot to do with getting me noticed at this level. I CANNOT thank you guys enough. But don't see it just for me - the series looks really good and off to a great start. And if you like seeing my stuff on there, send some feedback over to Escapist telling them so, and maybe I'll get asked to come back for more. Look for it next week!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

It lives!

Computer working again... mostly. New episodes plus something pretty big forthcoming as I make them and complete things. Thank all for patience.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Popmatters Interview

QUICKLY before this crashes again:

I've been interviewed by LB Jeffries of PopMatters about the OverThinker series. How cool is that? No time to even be faux-humble snarky about it (that was on the other blog, and even that was abbreviated.)

Read the interview here: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/feature/64317/the-new-youtube-game-criticism-an-interview-with-moviebob/

Wonder about how I got to be deemed newsworthy later ;)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

A memo to the fans

Okay. The reason there hasn't been a new video for almost a month is twofold: Firstly, my PC is apparently in some kind of death-throes, so my ability to get online OR edit is sporadic at the moment. Secondly... I can't say much officially at this time, but I have a few other projects taking up some time right now.

Rest assured that new material is on the way, and that I'll be saying more as soon as I am able to.

Monday, September 29, 2008

EPISODE THIRTEEN: "And There Came A Review"

Not that I don't enjoy being a commentator as opposed to a straightforward critic, but sometimes you just want to review something. So I did, to a largely overlooked budget DS platformer called "Barnyard Blast." The only thing you really need to know is that it's hero is a pig who is also a cowboy and that it actually sets out to spoof "Castlevania" and "Ghosts n' Goblins."

Friday, September 12, 2008

EPISODE TWELVE: "Sir Mix-A-Lot Would Approve"

See? Technically, it's a whole day LESS than a month since the last update :)

This one is, chiefly, about "Fat Princess"... or, rather, my likely-to-be-in-vain hope that the inevitable (mutually) embarassing dust-up between Gamers and Feminists over "Fat Princess."

Since "Fat Princess" is still yet to be released even for full reviews, this is probably the EARLIEST I've ever been to the party in terms of current-affairs commentary in game journalism. As you'll see in the video, there's a good reason for that: The earlier you hit a subject, the less usable visual material there is to work with.

As such, I'm not even going to pretend that this is one of the more visually-compelling episodes by any means; though I would perhaps beg a small amount of credit for doing ten minutes of commentary largely about anger amongst womenfolk and not doing a single Sarah Palin joke (saving for later, don't worry.)

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

EPISODE ELEVEN: "Can It Happen To Us?"

A decade ago, a onetime "niche" industry for the young and the geeky "grew up," conquered the world... and then lost everything. The OverThinker remembers how it happened, and wants to know if the gaming biz is heading down the same path.

I'll try not to let a month pass between installments again - fortunately this one was actually a pretty quick job. What slows these things down is the image-hunting: Some material you'll find TONS of stuff to work with, others... not so much.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


In which I most-emphatically DO NOT review one of the biggest titles of 2008.

I went back and forth about putting this one up now, my main concern being that putting up what boils down to a "yeah, but"-ing of one of the four or five biggest post-Playstation franchises isn't going to do much to deter my apparently growing reputation as a cranky nostalgia-gamer - the gaming equivalent of some aging-hippie film professor who STILL won't concede that "Easy Rider" has or ever will be surpassed... BUT it's a relevant entry and (more importantly) was finished and ready to go. I know I've been very blunt about not having a set schedule, but I do start to feel like a slacker if I let too much time go by.

And, of course, the near-garaunteed uptick in traffic that comes from being able to accurately place "GTA" in one's YouTube tags doesn't hurt, either...

Friday, June 13, 2008

EPISODE NINE: "Daisy, Daisy"

In which "Mario Kart Wii" gives me an excuse to string together some tangentially-related bits about Nintendo's "other princess," under-appreciated Hedgehog love-interests and Squaresoft's ever-more-"emo" hero characters. Also: Fixing some issues from last time, some elaboration on audio-editing and Italian softcore starlets.

Most of the time I have a cohesive, essay-ready plan for these. Other times... not so much. Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

EPISODE EIGHT: "Mississippi Pwning"

Wherein I go against my better judgement and wade into the continuing firestorm over "Resident Evil 5" as a first-step toward getting to a topic we'll probably need to revisit a few more times: Race and ethnic-portrayals in video games.

Had to go back to the sped-up sound a few times this time around, as I've discovered that YouTube doesn't even let DIRECTOR accounts do over ten minutes anymore. Dammit. Also recording sound in a new way, which I don't have exactly where I want it but it DOES allow me to get the material done and uploaded at a MUCH quicker pace. Those issues aside, I think this one came out decently. It's a tough topic, especially since it's not as easy to find appropriate visual aids as it is for, say, "the Boobs episode."

N'Gai Croal, the Newsweek blogger who took a lot of heat - most of it undeserved - from gamers over his negative critique of the trailer, is for the record one of the best game journalists in the mainstream media. I'm thinking of sending him a link to this, which seems courteous since he gets mentioned so often in it, though part of me is a little nervous as to what a professional thinks of my incoherent run-on sentences. Guess we'll see...

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

EPISODE SEVEN: "The Psychology of Nintendo Fans."

In the world of gaming and game-fandom, there's no insult that gets tossed around the forumscape with more vitriol than "Nintendo Fanboy." The Children of Miyamoto are legendary for the strength of their devotion and infamous for the creepiness of their occasional fanatacism - and both reputations are fairly well deserved. But what exactly makes them tick?

I'm not the first gaming culture-commentator to tackle this one... or the last... or even CLOSE to the best, but we all do our part. Part of what I realized putting this together is that most of us of the age to BE nostalgiac about this are ill-equipped to really get a handle on what it all really means: We're too close to be properly objective no matter how hard we try. EVERYONE knows or at least comprehends that "Nintendo Power" - just to use one example - was market-controlling corporate-propaganda of the first order. Everyone. But it doesn't matter. I remember getting my subscription and first issue as a Christmas present; you'll NEVER fully convince my brain to not hold some measure of fondness for it - any more than you'll convince Brits of certain generations that Golliwog was a cruel racist caricature.

Yeah, so... this one's a little on the sentimental side. More funny-business to come, I promise, but you gotta change it up here and there. I mean, the last installment was like ten solid minutes about BOOBS - I have to find the balance where I can ;)

Friday, April 25, 2008


Presenting Episode Six; which can be thought of as a sort-of followup to Episode Two. We discuss (well.. I discuss, at least) the somewhat uncomfortable and not-at-all clearcut issue of objectification of women in the video game medium, the likely cultural/societal reasons for it, the ramifications of these design choices on gamers and gamer-culture, possible solutions and any other serious-sounding excuse I can find to run suggestive pictures of the girls from "Dead or Alive." Helloooooo, web traffice ;)

This is the first one of these to hit where I haven't used the sound-speed editing at all, so I hope people aren't too dissapointed to learn how dull my normal speaking voice is.

Overall, I'm happy with how this one turned out considering actually picking a definative point of view was kind of a challenge. On the one hand, as I admit more-or-less upfront in the video-proper.. I not only COMPLETELY understand "why" game designers tend to present their female characters in these ways - I don't see a damn thing wrong with it in the broad sense: You want characters to be appealing, and it doesn't get much more appealing than a sexy, large-breasted girl wearing next to nothing jumping around with ninja skills and yelping in Manga-nese. It's not a new phenomenon, look up a 1940s comic book character called "Phantom Lady" sometime. On the other hand, when you take a step back and look at the medium objectively the fact that characters as ridiculously proportioned/costumed as Mai Shiranui or "Soul Calibur's" Ivy tend to pass entirely without comment (other than "whoa," I mean) well... that says and implies a lot of things about game culture and NONE of it is especially flattering.

So... it's not that I want to see Team Ninja sign all the girls up for reduction-surgery or anything, but we DO probably want to be more aware of how this fits in to the culture, perceptions and all of that. I mean, just keep in mind: The "Tomb Raider" series has NEVER had a single installment that was anything other than average as an overall game, but was SOMEHOW popular and well-known enough to warrant two huge-budget movies starring an Academy Award winner. Lara Croft has TWO movies while Link and Zelda don't have ONE... entirely on the basis of digitally-rendered titties. That's what's known as letting things get out of hand, people.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

EPISODE FIVE: "Patriot Games"

There's been a meme going around talk radio and the right-wing blogosphere for about a year now that video games (or, rather, Military FPS games) are becoming the new #1 entertainment for "patriotic" Americans, replacing the output of "liberal" Hollywood. I'm callin' BULLSHIT on this one, details in the video:

I'll be honest, I'm not 100% satisfied with how this one came out. The 10-minute time limit on YouTube meant I had to use the sped-up sound more than I would've liked to, and while it means I got out what I wanted to in terms of words I'm concerned that it undercuts some of the more serious matters I'm stumbling around swatting at with a wiffle-bat. Overall, I think it's as good as I can make it within current circumstances, and the important thing is I think the point gets across. It's not so much that I have a problem with the IDEA of video games having a conservative and/or pro-war political bent, I just happen to think those propping up this whole notion are grasping at straws and damaging the medium as a result.

The subject-matter has been on my to-do list since before Episode One, but I've been hesitant to jump into politics too early. This is meant to be about the culture surrounding a hobby, not a political machine, and if you get into politics before establishing a broader identity you risk getting pigeonholed as "a liberal commentator" or "right-wing game rant guy" which can turn off a lot of people unnecessarily. For what it's worth, I'm generally libertarian-leaning independent. I loathe Hillary Clinton, I find Obama's cheezy tent-revival schtick insufferable even though he seems like a nice fella otherwise, I admire the hell out of John McCain and voted for him in the Republican primary BUT I'm against unnecessarily prolonging the Iraq War plus I've nothing but contempt for the current administration. Make of that what you will.

Monday, April 14, 2008


I'm not going to make it a habit to post things other than new video clips here, (if you MUST subject yourself to me in essay-form, check out http://moviebob.blogspot.com) but given the events of the last 24 hours I felt the need for a more-proper intro here. For earlier (read: pre-4/12/08) readers and friends who may not have noticed, the mighty ScrewAttack.com was nice enough to put OverThinker Episode One up on it's Submission Sunday page yesterday, and as a result that episode and the other four have gone overnight from a slow trickle of views to thousands.

And, really... Wow. I'm kind of in shock. While this may sound disingenuous coming from a guy with TWO blogs... I'm not really good at seeking/recieving attention. So this is pretty wild, for me. But I want all you folks linking here from The YouTubes to know that I'm just incredibly grateful for all the positive feedback so far (and the negative is helpful in it's way, too.)

Also, let me use the opportunity to answer a few questions/comments that seem to have come up an awful lot in the YouTube talkbacks for each vid:

1.) Yes, the speed does change from bit to bit in some of the clips. YouTube only lets you post 10 minutes or less, so in some cases I've done some speeding-up of the recording in order to trim seconds here and there. I'm trying to cut back on this and/or bring more direct attention to it in future installments, because the sped-up speaking makes it sound like I'm trying to steal Yahtzee's routine (http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/editorials/zeropunctuation) which is something I definately want to avoid as much as possible.

2.) Speaking of which, let me put this to bed right now: Yahtzee and The Angry Video-Game Nerd (who's videos are posted at ScrewAttack.com and their GameTrailers associate-page, do yourself a favor and check him out, he's the man) are both 10,000 times better at this than I am. The comparisons are appreciated, really... but I'm not worthy of them. Hell, Yahtzee has a new full review up every week and can actually talk that fast - that's just fucking astounding.

3.) I'll probably be sticking more to cultural-commentary than reviews at this time, mostly for practical purposes: I'm not exactly wealthy and don't have regular access to every new game and/or system, nor does work permit to finish games in a timely enough fashion for a review to be very relevant by the time I could provide it. That being said, "Ninja Gaiden: Dragon Sword" for the DS? BUY IT.

So, um... yeah. Thanks for visiting, and I hope you continue to enjoy the videos!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

EPISODE FOUR: "The End of The World as Wii Know It?"

As the runaway success of The Wii seems poised to kick-off a second Nintendo Age, so-called "hardcore gamers" are predicting a dire outcome from the influx of "casual players." The OverThinker isn't so sure... because he's been here once before.

EPISODE THREE: "A Kirby Confession"

The OverThinker makes a plea for open-mindedness among hardcore gamers, and comes clean about his onetime rejection of one of gaming's greatest.

EPISODE TWO: "Super Mario & The Sacred Feminine"

The OverThinker agrees that the portrayal of women in video games leaves something to be desired. Conventional wisdom says it all goes back to Super Mario and "save the princess"... but The OverThinker feels conventional wisdom has got it all wrong.

EPISODE ONE: "A Matter of Character."

In the debut installment, the overwhelming awesomeness of "No More Heroes" leads the OverThinker to lament the lack of originality in the modern game world.