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Monday, September 19, 2005

EQII TV: Hail to the Queen

Well, I'm thinking of renaming this blog TechTV Me because I always find myself discussing it. But then I remember it is now called G4TV, so that would be a pretty stupid name. Anyway, this will be my third G4TV post, the first discussing the graphics on level 3 and the second reviewing the Everquest Icons show.

This one is about the EQII feature on Attack of the Show, formerly the Screensavers
. In case you missed the notice on the Launch Pad or the news page or just didn't catch the EQII Attack of the Show episode which aired on Thursday, September 15th, I will recap it for you.

Let's jump right in, shall we:

0-8:00: Well, it looks like the holy triumvirate of G4TV females is running the show today, although Morgan Webb is sadly absent. We have:

1. The overrated but bearable Sarah Lane
2. Laura "look at me I'm alternative with my cool hair and nose ring - Grrrrl Power - alternative browsers rule!" Foy
3. Tina "I straight-up shill for Nintendo at E3 but I'm an objective journalist I swear!" Wood

8:00 - 9:00 The ladies throw it over to Brendan Moran for a teaser of the EQII feature. You get a quick video feed of Antonica from the Butcherblock server. It looks like they are near the entrance to NQ. There's a nice selection of characters there. Enjoy it, because it's pretty much the most you're going to see. Someone runs past with a large text bubble proclaiming that someone or something "ROCKS!" in all caps but I couldn't make out the rest.

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Brendan then begins his usual flirting with any female who appears on the show. In this case, it's Anna Wainscoat, our Queen. First impressions: Wow, she's short. She looks like a hobbit next to Brendan. He asks her some stupid question about her costume and she answers, sounding like a California surfer girl.

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12:00 - 17:00: An interview with the producer and director of
Bang the Machine, a documentary about competitive Streetfighter players. Actually looks fascinating but there's no way to buy it or see it. Great, thanks.

20:00 - 23:00 Sarah visits the set of Threshold, some new TV show. I fast forward.

24:00 - 28:00 Sarah and Laura look at a music recommendation service. It takes Laura until the end of the segment to understand the concept and, in her alternative way, she references such extreme artists as Britney and Pink. As they go to commercial we get a video feed of Antonia (the character, not Anna) pounding her fist angrily. Why they chose that emote is beyond my comprehension. Then they flash to Anna, I assume to show just how little the two look alike.

29:00 - 33:00 Okay, this is the EQII segment. To clarify, EQII is not really being featured as a news topic, per se. It's the Lan Party game of the week. Or, excuse me, the AT&T Wireless AOL Broadband Lan Party sponsored by Alka-Seltzer on Alienware! Or whatever they're calling it these days. The Lan Party is a segment they do every Thursday where they feature a multiplayer game. It's usually an FPS game and they always have some model or booth babe type as the guest (occasionally they have a musician). The normal routine is for Brendan to flirt with the guest and then show two seconds of gameplay in which she shoots someone on her own team and giggles.

Now, I saw some people complaining on the forums that the segment was short. But this was actually by far the longest Lan Party segment I have ever seen, or at least the longest Lan Party "interview."

It turns out that Brendan was one of the judges of the Quest for Antonia contest in Vegas and they show a clip of Anna with some of the other contestants who actually look like Antonia. Back on the set, Brendan serves up the softball question, "Now who, exactly, is Antonia?" Now come on Anna, I know the SOE people prepared you for this one, or they should have.

Her eyes roll back in her head as she attempts to scan her memory and haltingly gives her prepared answer. Brendan makes a joke implying that she and Antonia look alike on the basis of breast size, although he does phrase it a little more subtly. Then comes my favorite part. Brendan, sounding actually curious, says, "Do you really think you look like her?" Anna says yes.

Brendan insists on holding the scepter and they show some shots of the Stuff shoot which is coming out in December. Anna says that no, she is not in the Antonia outfit for the photo shoot. SOE PR team for the win!

The future for Antonia? She is "going to, um, keep kicking butt."

33:00 - 36:00: The Feed. Sarah seems depressed.

39:00 - 43:00: Interview with American McGee who is promoting Bad Day in LA. It looks smart and funny but the gameplay looks lame. American states that the game was produced in Hong Kong because, "I was one of those people who said that if George Bush wins I'll move out of the country and I did." Laura replies, "I said that too! But, um, I'm still here." She's X-Treme!

47:00 - 53:00: Something about buying some girl's birthday party on EBay. Everyone does a terrible acting job of pretending to be drunk.

56:00 - 57:00: This is a segment they have been doing lately where they play Oregon Trail and fans vote on the choices the party should take. Amazing, classic game but a lame idea for a segment. I actually downloaded Oregon Trail a few months ago and it still holds up. Ah, the memories.

57:00 - 57:37: Okay, this is the actual Lan Party part of the Lan Party. Time for some EQII footage. You see a crowd of people for about half of a second. But then, whoever is controlling the character whose view they are using (it looks like Anna is but to be fair I can't tell for sure) decides to run the opposite way into the wilderness of Antonica where we see nothing but landscape and one Froglok. Truly hilarious. I couldn't make this stuff up, folks. They then cut to Anna who is tapping at a keyboard. Game over.

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They move on to the three hosts who are sitting on the couch with one of those stuffed DoF monkeys SOE is selling at the Station Store. Good thing Kevin Rose isn't on the show anymore or he would probably figure out a way to install Linux on it.

57:37 - End: The three hosts answer questions. Someone asks the truly insightful question, "If you could switch bodies with anyone on the couch, who would it be?" Tina asks if Anna is included in the choices and they cut to Anna. They then get into the discussion of whether Brendan would want to switch bodies with Anna. Seriously, they do. And, we're out.


Oh, they also show a person I believe is Blackguard at one of the other "Lan Party" computers as they are going to commercial at one point in the show. But they never interview him or refer to him.

As usual, it's more fun for me to take the negative viewpoint, but I do give kudos to the SOE PR people for getting EQII on the show and doing a pretty good job of it. Anytime you can get gameplay footage out to a decent audience, it's a victory. I think Anna will grow into her role as time goes by and, regardless of whether you think she looks like Antonia or not, she did seem to garner a lot more attention then the women they usually have on this segment. This translated into more EQII-centric airtime. So I congratulate her on that.

While we are on the TV subject, they have been showing that short WoW documentary on Al Gore's new cable channel, Current TV. Current is an easy channel to make fun of and they definitely need some work but there is actually a lot of great short content. I found a link to the WoW documentary for you so you can view it
here.

It seems to me that now is the perfect time for a longer documentary feature on MMORPG players which I think would be pretty interesting to the general public. So, if you are a documentary filmmaker with a suitcase full of money, be sure to look me up.


Some expansion impressions incoming tomorrow.

9 Comments:

Anonymous Stanrule1 said...

Funniest blog I've read yet. Good job Aggro.

12:30 AM  
Blogger jaipehg said...

Well, I haven't really seen Tech TV (or whatever it is) since uhmm.. probably when it changed. I think I know of the one "hot gamer chick." I think Anskiere pointed her out to me (while wiping the drool from his chin - oh to be a hot gamer girl!). Anyway, so yah.. still not pleased with their decision on who's Antonia but hey!

And you mentioned a girl with a nose ring? I bet it ones of those in the nostril, huh? I have a *real* nose ring (septum). /flex

But amusing post, nonetheless. :B

-plutek

12:42 AM  
Blogger cyan said...

G4 sucks goat dong. I refuse to watch anything on there. I thought 13 year olds arguing on message boards was bad, then I saw some lame top 10 show on G4 and knew there was worse.

I give SOE credit for moving the PR, I think it is a good move over all and they need to bite into the WoW crowd, but I loathe craptaular magazines like Stuff and Maxim, but the average demographic of 20-30 year old males who tithe their paychecks to EA for a shitty QB view Madden "updates" isn't gonna dig EQ2 I don't think. I wonder if they are pumping the game to the right crowd.

-Cyan
EQ2-Daily.com EQ2 Podcast

1:52 AM  
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Thank you for reminding me why I don't watch television.

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