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Preview: Oddball Update

Oddball Update

Chief Oddball writes about tech, games, cars and family life

Last Build Date: Tue, 15 Nov 2016 05:35:25 +0000


Freedom From a World Gone Mad

Tue, 15 Nov 2016 05:26:37 +0000

A long time ago, in what seems like a world far, far away, I wrote about buying a Pontiac GTO. The fact that Pontiac Motor Division has been dead for almost eight years should be testament enough to exactly how long ago that was. Since then a lot has changed: we went from nobody being able to believe that George W. Bush was president then, to today when nobody can believe that Donald Trump was just elected to the same office. When you combine that with all of the extreme folks from either side of the political spectrum all vowing to end each other, it's not hard to imagine that I'm feeling pretty certain that the world has gone completely friggin' nuts, and there may be no turning back. So in the spirit of gettin' while the gettin's good, I'm buying another car. Because in the face of so much patent insanity, a machine purpose-built for giving you exclusive control over going wherever you damn well please, sounds like precisely the antidote I need.


Sun, 19 Jun 2016 03:52:35 +0000

Halfway through 2016, I've finally decided what this year represents for me: transition. But not just one. Indeed; the first few months could be looked back upon as nothing other than a transition to hell, a waking nightmare that I always feared -- or even knew with certainty -- would one day come true. Since hitting that rock bottom, I've found a new transition underway: a transition to a new phase of life, a new and hopefully healthier outlook. But God has it been a hard road getting here.

Through The Ages: A Hill to Die On

Wed, 03 Feb 2016 14:51:53 +0000

Prolific board gamers know Through the Ages.  Consistently one of the top 10 (if not top 5) games of all time according to, this civilization-building strategy game is among one of the most celebrated of its kind.  From excellent mechanics to well-crafted strategic elements, it’s one of those rare games that you’ll feel immensely satisfied after playing, even if you lost badly.

The Lift Factor

Tue, 05 Aug 2014 04:06:22 +0000

Lately, my son Connor likes to spend bedtime with me playing "the elevator game". It started one day when I slid a stuffed animal up and down the side of his crib while making elevator noises. Now it's morphed into a full-blown soap opera, where each night we visit One Harvie Plaza, the posh corporate convention center and apartment tower that's filled with elevators.

First Look: Destiny Alpha Test (PS4)

Tue, 17 Jun 2014 08:23:27 +0000

This past weekend, Bungie's upcoming shooter Destiny was playable in a pre-release alpha state for a limited engagement of three days only. Thus began my three unforgettable consecutive nights of total immersion in the Destiny universe. Taken as a whole, that universe is so compelling, so addicting, that you want to immerse yourself in every meson of it simultaneously.

Splice & Dice: Wiring the House for Ethernet

Sun, 01 Jun 2014 07:42:12 +0000

As we were talking about our plans for the house this year, we decided to mount a new big-screen LED TV on the wall back in the bedroom. Of course, with the wireless Internet connectivity being as choked and spotty as it is back there, adding a whole media center with Smart TV apps and game consoles seemed like a pretty dumb idea. So I decided to run a new Ethernet drop back there.

Ten Years Hence: Vampire – The Masquerade: Bloodlines

Thu, 15 May 2014 03:38:38 +0000

Ssshh. Hear that sound? It’s the clatter of a hundred hard drives belonging to all the people who felt compelled to reinstall Vampire – The Masquerade: Bloodlines merely because I mentioned it. It’s a bit like Deus Ex in that way, in fact — only with vampires, prostitutes and dark humor.

Running the Nets: One Year Later

Fri, 21 Feb 2014 05:06:53 +0000

Back when I first reviewed Android: Netrunner, the two-player “Living Card Game” from Fantasy Flight Games with a decidedly cyberpunk theme, I was enamored with it. My only problem was that I had very few friends who knew the game — precisely one, actually; my boss — which led to my becoming only casually acquainted with it.

Oddball Review: Eminent Domain

Fri, 07 Feb 2014 04:44:35 +0000

I’ve always been a huge fan of sci-fi, cyberpunk and space exploration themes, much more so than the traditional fantasy settings involving elves, orcs and dragons. So when it was suggested that we play Eminent Domain over lunch I was naturally very excited.

My Next-Gen Game Plan (Or: How GameStop Bought Me an Xbox One)

Mon, 16 Sep 2013 04:00:48 +0000

Since video games are my #1 hobby, I naturally spend the better part of my spare hours dedicated to making sure I get more of them. That statement carries more weight now than it has in some time, because 2013 is the year both the Xbox and PlayStation platforms introduce their next-generation console hardware.