Monthly Archives: July 2014

Examining Robotech

UN_SPACY_by_n1nj4_Katak_chanRobotech is a North American classic of SF&F. Cobbled together from the parts of three separate and unrelated series from Japan, it’s not a stretch to say that it was the single largest breakthrough for anime in North America. Looking back through nostalgia-vision, it was an amazing series that, along with Transformers, permanently hooked me on giant robots. Looking at it now, there are some serious issues with the series that are uncorrectable for reasons that I’ll go into as this post progresses.

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The Wider World of Tanks

World-of-TanksAnyone who knows me in real life knows that I’m into tanks. Tanks, and by extension most armoured fighting vehicles (AFVs), are kind of my thing. I teach AFV and aircraft recognition, have Military Machines International magazines laying about, and possibly too much bookshelf is being consumed by a slowly growing selection of books about tanks and other AFVs. Needless to say, I’ve wanted to play World of Tanks for some time, and earlier this year I finally got my poor old iMac to run it. The game is great fun, but some parts of it leave me with mixed feelings. The creators of the game have done a great job overall, going so far as to have nation specific voices for the crews to shout in. The research detail isn’t too shabby either, although some vehicles suffer for the sake of game balance. The part that left me disappointed was the crew section. In the garage (or stables as I prefer), each tank’s crew is represented with a row of thumbnail images, one for each crewman. The faces are overwhelmingly white. In fact, only the tanks from the USA’s tech tree have the option of being switched to having POC crew, or the possibility of having a POC face randomly selected. Now, given that the game was originally aimed at a World War Two-ish era, some might ask “So?”
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