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Ben Hornsby Ben Hornsby
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Gosh, I Spilled This Whole Mountain Dew (Code Red) All Up In My Guitar Pickups!

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A Review of the 2012 Electronic Entertainment Expo

There's a reason it's called a power chord. I'm not going to put it into words - that wouldn't be fun. If anyone ever tries to explain to you why they're called power chords, they're a jerk. (That's not what I'm doing. I'm talking about videogames.) You can figure it out yourself, if you don't already know, and you don't even have to read any words; you just have to spend enough time completely alone with a guitar. In fact, reading words can only hurt you. This is crucial information, here! (If you're a game designer!)

The TV in front of me just played a commercial for Pizza Hut P'Zolos. They're like Pizza Hut Hot Pockets, or something. I guess. The name stems from the word P'Zone. A P'Zone is like a calzone, but with that special Pizza Hut touch. It is also evidently a product of such success that its very name is spawning new products. Did you know that there were once Doritos that were coated in a mystery flavor, and that that flavor was literally Mountain Dew?

That's one way to use the word literally. I heard another one on Spike TV last week. A girl said 'We literally won't be taking a breath for the next three days.' I only watch Spike TV once a year. Yes: It was The Holidays.

Another thing I saw on Spike TV last week: A grown man on a stage told me that I should buy a game for Xbox 360 instead of PlayStation 3 because the Xbox version was going to give me Exclusive Early Access to the First DLC Pack. Maybe you're just a regular person reading this by accident, and you don't know what the hell I'm talking about. Well, I'll tell you!

Sometimes these big mainstream blockbuster million-dollar videogames are wrapped in different colored packages so that they can be played on more than one machine. Sometimes you can go online and pay an extra 10 dollars to play a piece of that game that you wouldn't normally be able to play otherwise. The piece is chosen arbitrarily by a team of suited (sweat- or otherwise) men who often achieve consciousness only to find themselves putting the words 'startup' and 'trending' near the opposite ends of a sentence. They do not realize their choice is arbitrary, because the amount of money they're being paid to make these choices would literally make you scream. If even bigger jerks are paid even jerkier sums of money, then you may have the option of paying your $10 exactly one week earlier if you picked the right color machine to play the game on.

Somewhere there are Secret Jerk-Geniuses, too, and their jobs are even scarier. They spend 80 hours a week figuring out what combinations of colors and big words will most efficiently hypnotize people - over the internet - into starting stamp collections. (Not literally.) When they're done with us we're not just supposed to pay our extra $10 early - we're supposed to be looking forward to it nine months in advance.

I also saw a commercial for Klondike Bars. It had a man struggling to listen to his wife talk about her life for literally - literally - five seconds. A timer appears floating in front of him. He scrunches up his fat, hairy, manny face and sort of limply sweats while his wife goes on. The timer hits zero - he made it! He celebrates with ice cream.

Nobody has ever said anything to me face-to-face that has offended me as much as this commercial does, and I know people that hate me (can you believe it?); this commercial offends me maybe 95 percent less than the man on the Spike TV stage. Full disclosure: I do like ice cream.

Anyway. E3 was last week, guys! The results are in, and your predictions were correct: None of these games look as good as Doom!

a million stars (out of kill me)


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