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neurological dryer lint

dirty deeds... and the dunderchief


that five-sided fist-a-gon

renee had the idea to have lamb-kabobs tonight. they ended up pretty good - i had forgotten how excellent lamb was on the grill. almost as good as dad's. although the potatoes on her kabobs didn't get cooked all the way. i guess i need to soften them up before i throw them on the grill.

(clever image above stolen from diesel sweeties)

i gotta say how impressed i am by bridgetown finer meats. those dudes are always friendly and helpful. you cannot walk out of that store in a bad mood. they hook you up with great quality stuff and they're always willing to offer advice on preparation, storage, etc.

so for the past week or so i've been buried in metal gear solid: portable ops, which is by far the finest PSP title i've ever played. surprisingly not only because i loved MGS3 so much (MGS:PO is its sequel), but because finally a developer put in the effort to use the system to its fullest potential.

this MGS mixes it up a bit by adding a team aspect to the stealth action. so while you're out on a spying mission, instead of going it alone with only some dudes on the radio to help you, there's up to three additional soldiers on site with you. you can only control one at a time, and the rest of the time the others hang out unseen in cardboard boxes. you can switch between them if, say, you need someone in disguise to do some scouting without drawing attention, or you need to pick up some items and send them back to base.

you add people to your team in a variety of ways - the second coolest way is to kidnap enemy soldiers while on site (instead of just knocking them out or killing them, as in previous MGS games), and turn them to your side. so now you knock a dude out and instead of dragging them to a locker to hide their body, you drag them back to your truck.

the coolest way to build up your crew is the in-game feature of scanning wireless access points with the built-in wifi adapter. you run a scan when you're by an AP and if the signal is good enough it 'finds' a new soldier on the fly - by which i mean it creates the dude, name, stats, etc. from the AP's information. my guess is that it uses the SSID, broadcast channel, MAC address of the AP, or other factors and turns those into stats. it's pretty spiffy. i've been bringing it along with me while out to scan AP's in office buildings, coffeeshops, etc. and have built up a pretty impressive team. we did a little wardriving a few days ago while on lunch and nabbed three just in my office's parking garage.

(you can also get new guys using the PSP GPS adapter, but it's not out in the US yet.)

beyond such nerd-attracting features, though - the gameplay, graphics, story, and voice acting are all top-notch. lots of complaints about the controls have been voiced - but in my experience they've been very useable. i haven't tried the multiplayer yet - not confident enough in my skills to risk my team getting slaughtered. it's a pretty impressive release, though, and FWIW is all i could hope for in copying the MGS experience on a little handheld. go get it if you're sporting a PSP.


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