Jaybird is Birdmojo on Xbox Live and Jaybirdmojo on Playstation's network. He's been playing consoles since the Atari 2600 and it was Zork that taught him how to touch-type. If you've got a song for Wednesday, a commercial for Saturday, a recommendation for Tuesday, an essay for Monday, or, heck, just a handful a questions, fire off an email to

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16 Responses

  1. Jaybird says:

    This essay may be of interest to the lawyerly types ’round here. It’s an essay from an IP lawyer who is looking at the Harmony Gold lawsuit and he gives his take.

    (You should know going into the essay that the writer, like all reasonable people, is biased in favor of getting the old mech back.)Report


    Watched the clip and yes it is cool.

    But there are so many problems here. All those moving parts, something’s bound to go wrong especially when doing a transformation at, seemingly, Mach 1 within an atmosphere.

    Secondly, why have a machine transform into an anthropoid shape? Is there something uniquely advantageous of making something in our image? Sure, if we were to design brachiating robots for some unfathomable reason. Philosophically, human shaped robots illustrate hubris and a lack of scientific and engineering rigor. Why have eyes made of jelly, water, and meat when one can have eyes made of crystal or some other durable, clear material? Hubris because it’s declaring “We have become god” by creating something in Our Image when planes function better as planes, rather than some mechanical swiss army knife with a plasma rifle. Even if humanity were able to imbue these objects with a semblence of consciousness or, daresay, a soul then these gadgets would begin existence as caricatures of our warlike nature rather than becoming something else without any of humanity’s baggage.

    I’m torn between purchasing Elder Sign: Omens or Thimbleweed Park. Maybe Weird Worlds.

    P.S. I’m still upset that reinstalling Steam deleted all the ships I unlocked in FTL.Report

  3. Zac Black says:

    This is one of those things I don’t really talk about around here, but since it came up organically: I’m kind of a giant BattleTech fan, it’s basically my nerd heroin. I’ve been playing it for almost twenty years, and in my time with it I’ve gamed with the game’s developers, gotten credited in a few of the sourcebooks, and currently run the most popular non-canon unit on the official forums, which just hit its ten-year mark in March (that last bit always reminds me of that quote from 1990: ‘In the future, we will all be famous for fifteen people.’) A friend of a friend of mine actually works at Harebrained Schemes, and he scored me a tour of the studio and one of the flight jackets from the Kickstarter you normally had to drop like $500 to get a month back; on top of that, I got to meet Jordan Weissman, which for me is like a Catholic getting to meet Jesus Christ.

    Anyway, the drama over the ‘Unseen’, as they’re called, has been playing out in the community as long as I’ve been a part of it. In the mid-2000s the powers-that-be at the time put out a book called Project Phoenix that included new art that represented updated modern versions of those old ‘Mechs (the originals come from 3025 in the setting’s timeline, whereas the Phoenix ‘Mechs [or ‘Reseen’] were from the at-the-time-present of 3067-ish), but the response from the fans was pretty mixed. In the past few years they’ve taken another bite at the apple with a new artist but this time Harmony Gold apparently pounced, so things have been weird the last couple years while that sorts itself out. I hope they do manage to fend off HG because I love the new art they’ve done, and it seems like they will even if it takes a while.Report

    • Jaybird in reply to Zac Black says:

      Dude! That’s awesome! I picked up BattleTech for my four-day weekend and, lemme tell ya, he captured the spirit of the tabletop game in the same way that he captured the spirit of Shadowrun.

      Harmony Gold is awful. They’re the current shining example of Copyright trolling that benefits no one.

      Their last lawsuit got dismissed WITH PREJUDICE (which is awesome) but I am very, very frustrated by this sneaking suspicion that they’re going to successfully be a dog in the manger until early 2023 or so by suing anybody and everybody who sketches something that looks vaguely like a Warhammer despite never having held the copyright in the first place.Report

  4. @jaybird I’m wondering if this musing on Battletech is not a foreshadowing of you having strong feelings about the forthcoming Pacific Rim 2, which by many accounts looks to have the potential of being a hot mess?Report

    • I liked the first Pacific Rim. It was a hair overstuffed but del Toro managed to do something that only the Godzilla movies had accomplished up to this point: He made the mechs seem freakin’ *HUGE*.

      And, quite honestly, complaining about a movie in which giant mechs used battleships as baseball bats to fight against Cthulhu-esque monsters from the deep being overstuffed? Well, that’s a first world problem right there.

      That said, Pacific Rim 2 appears to have already come out? (This here says it came out in March…)

      Which pretty much tells me that it slipped past my radar. It’s a movie that I would have enjoyed seeing in the theater, but… jeez. It’s only playing in the dollar theater here in town at this point. I’ll get it on Blu-Ray.Report