The Sunday Papers

By Kieron Gillen on August 22nd, 2010 at 11:22 am.

I want more tea. No time. No time for tea.

Sundays are for grabbing a boxful of comics so I can make my presence known at Comiket in Battersea – come along, if you’re in the area – while hoping you work out a way to make a plot into (y’know) a plot. Oh – and quickly compiling a list of the fine (mostly) game related reading from across the week, without linking to some piece of pop music by someone who does things other than make pop music. Go!

Failed.

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103 Comments »

  1. Tom O'Bedlam says:

    Hah! I went to New York for the first time in early 2001 and when my parents asked me where I wanted to see while we were there I immediately responded, “Statue of Liberty, Battery Park and Hell’s Kitchen!”. Damn that was a good holiday :)

    • Vandelay says:

      I was just there for the first time a little over a month ago. Some stunning sites, Statue of Liberty in particular. Gotta say though, it’s not really a place I would want to live in, whereas European cities always seem like a fantastic place to live, especially London.

      And I scoff and Lewis’s “well in the 90s.” I was in Central Park eating a hot dog during the record breaking 103.

    • bill says:

      Reads like a 6 to me..

  2. AndrewC says:

    Thank you Kieron for the link to me music night! I dunno if my internet is just being screwy but the link to the trailer is really jittery, so i’ve uploaded to it on Youtube too: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yNm5lLQKQoQ

    Also the link to the music page isn’t actually there!

    And yes there will be cake.

  3. Wednesday says:

    Oh God, I feel Caldwell’s pain. Three sodding years of work and I’m left with little resort but to apply to local burger joints because the supermarkets all rejected me. It is exactly like he said: all we ever heard was “go to uni, get a degree” because that’s what makes schools and colleges look good. No one ever, not once, said “go do a vocational course, gain some skills in a trade and find work.” Ten grands worth of debt for the privellege of being turned down by the Co-op for night shifts.

    • BigJonno says:

      I have this weirdly opposite situation. I’m 27 and a first year student. I’ve spent most of the last decade in gainful employment including the last three years as a higher-level teaching assistant. A recent change of circumstances has made it necessary for me to find work. Can I get a job? Can I buggery. In over a month I’ve had a single interview, which was for part-time retail work and I didn’t get the job.

      It’s absolutely insane.

    • malkav11 says:

      Every job I looked at in my chosen field (Java programming) was perfectly happy to accept my two year vocational degree, but wanted about six years more experience than I could possibly have as a new graduate. Degrees are overrated, at least in many fields. Experience is much more crucial.

      As it is, I do clerical work for the government now, which is all right, but not really what I had envisioned doing with my life. Weirdly, although I do zero programming and rarely require much computer knowledge, that degree did weigh in my favor when it came to getting hired. It has tended to mean to my employers that I am computer savvy in a way that most of my coworkers are not, which, in their minds, makes me a valuable resource for doing things like helping with the implementation of new software. Not coding it, you understand. Just coming to grips with it quickly and pointing out areas where the vendor might need to tweak stuff. Also helping my substantially computer illiterate coworkers learn it.

    • Wednesday says:

      I’m not really sure who Degrees are being overrated by malkav, except young students looking to go into higher education. Everyone except the people who matter know how much less a degree means today. I just wish some one had told that to my 16 year old self.

      It’s sad, because from a personal viewpoint I wouldn’t give my uni experience up for the world. Financially though…

    • malkav11 says:

      Parents. Teachers. And, because those are the people who young students (quite reasonably) listen to when planning, the students themselves. Every single person I talked to up until college age emphasized how crucially important it was that I got a minimum of a four year degree and preferably at the best school I could possibly get into. Hell, they’re still trying to convince me to go back to college, nevermind that as far as I can tell it would make no difference and only get me into debt.

      That said, there are definitely professions where a lot of schooling is important. You’ll never make it as a doctor without years of medical school.

    • Archonsod says:

      Discipline does matter, and of course some companies still have graduate programs.
      In IT most companies want to know first that you can do the job before looking at your academic qualifications to see if you’d be capable of doing the job. Generally the guy who’s done four years in a similar role is going to get picked before the guy who’s done a four year degree.

      Part of the problem tends to be graduates absolutely suck at making the most of whatever experience they can scratch from their background too, which is probably just inexperience with the job market as much as anything else. Little tricks like putting “self employed technician” rather than “helped family and friends with their IT problems”.

    • Harlander says:

      @malkav11

      There were recruitment agencies asking for 3 years Java experience in 1995.

      Java came out in… yeah.

      Personally, I got quite lucky in re: university and employment. The company I did my (paid) internship with as part of my sandwich degree gave me a job.

    • Kadayi says:

      Sadly unfortunately Higher education really doesn’t tend to provide you with much when it comes to work place skills (even on vocational courses). There’s a huge step up from the sort of meandering work you do on a degree Vs the realities and the demands of the work place. Yes I know it seems like you’re probably being flogged to death on your degree, but large tracts of that time will be taken up with endless academic conjecture and fussing, which just doesn’t happen when your time costs and an hourly rate.

      The problem for employers is, if you take on someone whose completely green, the first 6 months or so you’ll be effectively carrying them, and right now there’s not the money going around to indulge in such luxuries. Needless to say if there are openings going generally they are always going to go to someone with a modicum of experience because the time it takes to turn them from overhead to productive is going to be far less.

      On the flip side the Tescos of this world aren’t really interested in hiring people with degrees etc, because they know that you are effectively just going to be taking the job until something better comes up and that might be next week. It’s an investment in loss for them to take you. Far better to take the guy with no qualifications, or the part-time mum as it’s a certainty that they are probably going to stay.

      So what are your options? Sit around play computer games/post on web forums and gradually get fatter? Well that’s certainly one route. Alternatively instead of looking for a job with what you’ve got, perhaps think about ways to improve your existing skill set. If anything skills are things that employers are interested in seeing. Even if they aren’t necessarily directly applicable have a large skill set will always impress someone principally because it shows you are driven.

      Learn photoshop/illustrator/powerpoint/Flash/dreamweaver/how to touch type etc etc. Now when I say Learn I don’t mean potter around without direction. I genuinely mean learn . There are plenty of resources (free and otherwise) out there to be able to help you understand the underlying methodology to an application and that is generally the key. It’s not necessary to know everything about an application, it’s just necessary to understand it and where to go if your stuck. Set yourself some projects and build on them. Sure you’ll probably never know as much about Photoshop as Scott Kelby, but you’ll know a lot more than most other people and a little knowledge is never a bad thing. In the land of the blind, the one eyed man is king.

    • Xercies says:

      I kind of agree with this…many people when they don’t get the job they wanted to get and get a lower job give up kind of and of course that means there skills suffer. its not rosy but you should be putting those skills up. i;ve seen it when people give up. I’m not saying i’m the best at it…i know i’m not sometimes i do just watch movies and play games. but to be hones I’m getting out there trying to make movies and stuff because it furthers what i’m getting into media9plus i kind of enjoy it) so yeah people may need to do something a bit mroe learn it. learn programs if you have to do pirate them because basically when you get that job you will be paying back more for the program then you would ever before.

    • Kadayi says:

      @Xercies

      I don’t like to advocate piracy as a rule, but my perspective is if you aren’t using a piece of software to directly make money (and therefore not robbing the software manufacturers of a commercial licence) , but are using it to familiarise yourself with the tools to make yourself more employable then it’s acceptable.

    • Jake says:

      I don’t necessarily disagree with the sentiment about teaching yourself a skill, but there are so many Photoshoppers these days. Can’t people self-teach themselves things like plumbing? It seems like for every plumber in the world there are 20 graphic designers bidding to make his logo. Also, programmers make more money than designers, maybe teach yourself Java or something instead.

    • Muzman says:

      None of this is all that new. We should have seen it coming really. For thirty years we’ve put business before everything and made everything else call itself a business. Education used to be about learning. We used to see intelligence as separate from knowledge, but evident in ones ability to get knowledge (OK, not much more than now, but even a small amount is significant). Employment training was done by employers. Now everyone is so risk averse it’s always someone else’s problem. “We only want the best candidates. Having to guess who is best and then pay them for X amount of time with no certainty they’ll turn out like we want, well, that’s just an expense we can do without.” (Where did all the money go btw? That’s what I’ve started to wonder more and more. This trend has been building for decades. Rich companies have long been acting like they can’t affort to ‘carry’ people. The recent crisis just means they’ve at last got an excuse).

      Then the certification/acreditation industry (racket really) pops up to fill that gap. Free market at its best. No one really learns exactly what’s important for on the job there either (I mean, what two workplaces have the same work flow? Even in the same industry it varies wildly). But it makes people feel better. And if that doesn’t work just get more acreditations. Portfolios and self taught stuff will rarely get you in (at least that I’ve seen). Basically educational institutions of any stripe have become voucher distributors; the more you can get to vouch for you the more able you are to convince the HR people that their job is secure in giving you the nod; “They had all those acreditations! I applied the correct hiring heuristic”.

      Well you can always do work experience. Trouble is work experience is often meaningless (and people in charge of hiring have told me they generally ignore it on a resume). Why? Because business doesn’t teach people anything anymore and is not expected to. There’s nothing to say you learnt anything during an unpaid internship. You probably made the tea for six months. Oh and their business model may have nothing applicable to ours. Oops.

      I don’t think many quite grasp how poisonus all this is. It’s just too easy to say ‘toughen up princess’ and fall back on traditional notions of adversity being good for people, individual endeavour cutting through,”so and so made it because he worked it” etc. None of that adequately explains what’s going on. Something is terribly wrong and its actually got very little to do with the current economic downturn.

    • Kadayi says:

      @Jake

      I don’t disagree. In fact if there is one area where there exists a constant need it’s things like plumbers, electricians and the like. Though trade skills aren’t something you can teach yourself unfortunately as they require accreditation. I’m not saying ‘learn photoshop’ I’m just saying ‘learn something’ rather than not.

      @Muzman

      No ones denying that it’s still necessary to have those fairly meaningless bit’s of paper that say that X passed a Ba in Y. But if you’ve the ability to put down a strong skill set on your CV you’re at an advantage Vs those who can’t.

    • Muzman says:

      Well, for what it’s worth, I’m saying those bits of paper were more meaningful once (and people seemed to be a bit more imaginative in considering what they actually indicated in a person). But an increase in so called vocational education is, if not the cause of, an indication they’ve been subject to a sort of inflation all of their own.

    • rhizo says:

      What was very useful for me in terms of employment after (or during to be honest) uni was the experience and contacts that I managed to get during the more practical studies. Our uni had so called project studies, where students were divided into groups that did small software development projects for various companies. After that it was just a matter of getting noticed and I managed to get hired to further develop the software my group had started. That experience under my belt it was easier to get to a paid internship and that led to me getting a steady programming job in another software company.

      Of course every employer is looking for 5 years of experience but often settle for the experience they can get. That being said, the SW developer market is probably less contested in my region than in the UK (assuming that’s what you’re mostly talking about). As a warning example though, starting to work while studying it took me three extra years to get my MSc.

    • cruize says:

      What “degrees” do you guys have? I got a BEng in Computer Science in 2006, and its not been terribly difficult to find a job – the last time I switched jobs was in May 2009 too, which wasn’t exactly prime job hunting season.

  4. Neil says:

    I love Kupek. Those are interested might want to check out other Kupek music. I particularly recommend the first half of the Nameless Faceless Compilation.

    • l1ddl3monkey says:

      Ta, the Born Slippy cover is my introduction to them and I rather liked it.

  5. Vitamin Powered says:

    Oh wow, this is going to be an amazing week of reading. Thanks Kieron!

  6. Lewis says:

    London will be my next stop in terms of places to live, but I must say, I did not want to leave New York, and found it to be a noticeably friendlier, cleaner, more interesting and and more efficient city to be in.

    • Lewis says:

      Er. Oops. That was in reply to Vandelay.

    • bill says:

      You can visit the Hellgate.

      And watch some bands at Hellgate Academy

    • dadioflex says:

      Was that sarcasm?

    • FunkyBadger says:

      a noticeably friendlier, cleaner, more interesting and and more efficient city to be in

      So is Mogadishu.

    • Vandelay says:

      Interesting. My trip to America took in Washington, New York and Boston, and New York came across as by far the least friendly. Both Boston and Washington were packed with people always willing to help, whilst New York felt like a place where people just seemed to be rushing about to get to where they needed to be. Washington was probably my favourite out of the three, which when you consider it has had a reputation of being the murder capitol of the world was kind of surprising.

      Having said that, I was only 3 or 4 days in each of these places and only got to see small chunks, mainly in the touristy bits. New York was also during July 4th, so probably not the best indication of the normal life of the city.

    • DrGonzo says:

      Yeah is my sarcasm filter not working? New York is the most aggressive place I’ve been.

      “Hey FUCK YOU BUDDY!? Who counts FUCKING change at the counter you FUCKING RETARD!”

      That’s the kind average encounter with a stranger I got in New York.

    • CMaster says:

      I did something smilar to Denby in NY – went around all the Deus Ex spots (except Laguardia/sewers/mysterious warehouse). However yeah, I thought New York (well, Manhatten) was one of the dirty, more ramshackle looking big cities I had been to. Sure, the lobbies of the big corporations were nice and shiny, but the pavement outside was falling apart and filthy, and the subway had loose pipes and wires you had to dodge with your head.

  7. JackShandy says:

    Thank you thank you thank you for linking that Five Players blog. It’s fantastic.

  8. Legionary says:

    Totally disagree with that article in The Reticule about hats. The thrust of their argument is that the addition of hats and alternate weapons harms the distinct silhouette of the different classes. They talk about how it’s not apparent at a glance any more exactly who you’re facing: yes it might be a heavy, but is that heavy using Natasha? They go as far as to say it’s “almost unplayable”.

    I think that’s such a lot of histrionic nonsense that I have difficulty even comprehending it. Unplayable? Really?

    The classes are still distinct thanks to their animations. A demo-man moves in a completely different way to a lumbering heavy, who is always distinct from the loping stride of a medic. Whether they have a hat on or not doesn’t suddenly make it hard to see what class they are. I have never been unable to identify an opposing player’s class.

    Regarding weapons, it is now impossible to look at a class across the map and know what they’re using — unless they are using it. The different weapons in use are generally distinct, though I accept that some – the Scottish Resistance and the Spy’s revolvers – are hard to distinguish from the classes’ other weapons.

    I don’t know why not being able to make that visual identification would come close to make a game “unplayable” though… TF2 was the exception in the FPS market by having such visually different classes, and a slight muddying of the waters leaves it (I would say) still the most distinct in terms of visual differences between the classes.

    As for hats showing a lack of creative imagination… are they kidding me? What kind of war-themed hat simulator would TF2 be without hats?

    • Peter Radiator Full Pig says:

      Actually, i have found this article to be the case, its the reason i quit TF2.

      Clean silloutetts became muddied, changeable.
      Before, spotting a small glimpse of yellow ment you were looking at the head of an engie.
      So you know hes probably ducking and making some buildings there.
      Now it could be a bald spot, which could belong to sniper, scout, heavy or engie.

      A glimpse at one time would tell you whats where, now you are assaulted by different images.
      As for the animation, what if they arent moving?

    • airtekh says:

      I’m in agreement with you Legionary.

      I have never, ever, in all my hundreds of hours playing TF2, mistaken another class because of the hat they were wearing.

      The moan about the weapons seems misplaced as well. If you get ambushed by a Pyro, you’re not thinking ‘Does he have an axtinguisher or a normal axe?’, you’re thinking ‘I’M ON FIRE!’, and you either kill him quickly and retreat to extinguish yourself, or he kills you and that’s that.

      The whole hat-related debate seems very binary: you either love them or hate them.

    • DrGonzo says:

      I’m the opposite. I quit because the game came with way too few a maps and nothing more to do after I had exausted myself on the beta. I came back to the game after they had added more crazy to it.

      I imagine they have gained about 5 old users who got bored for every snob that they lost. Plus I imagine those that lost were the ones who took the game seriously anyway.

    • Mad Doc MacRae says:

      Fully agree with Legionary, airtekh, and DrGonzo. Beyond maybe your first few games of TF2 you’ll have no trouble telling classes apart, and being able to tell important differences between weapons. It doesn’t really matter which revolver a spy is shooting you with – if he’s close by just kill him, if he’s far away put some cover between you.

      If you are actually having trouble keeping track of which classes look/move like which, maybe something slower paced, perhaps turn-based, is more up your alley.* I suspect however that most of the complaints about new hats and the like are people bored of playing the game (in which case, play another game) or those who liked TF2 “before it got popular” (in which case, go screw yourself).

      *Not a dig at turn-based games; I’m more of a strategy gamer than an FPSer as a rule myself. TF2 is basically the only FPS I play a lot of.

  9. Arienette says:

    There’s a comiket in Britain? Awesome, after visiting the Japanese one earlier on this month I really wished there was something like that. Should’ve just tried google in hindsight.

  10. bill says:

    That GTA story is kinda heart-warming. Hope my kids turn out the same…

  11. Tauers says:

    Different place. Same story.

    :(

  12. mandrill says:

    The Grand Theft Auto article is a classic.

    What do we really get out of games? What we take into them it would seem.

  13. Xercies says:

    Hmm that internship piece is really good around this time…especially with people wanting to go to uni so despretly…even uni will not gurantee you a job. I’m reminded by my dad and how if he wasn’t the one to be doing it basically where he works would not be getting the guys coming in and he sees all these graduates which are basically depressed doing no money work and working in a bar if there lucky because a company will use them for “filing” say to themselves there doing a good job and not actually hire them. Basically Interns are the new slave labour(thats a bit excagerated i have to say but it gets the message across)

    I went to New York what a great place that is…Time Sqaure, empire state building all the “little” areas(seriously every culture you can think of it has a little area in new York) oh and Roxys Diner…the place with burgers half the plate..and the plate is pretty big.

  14. Freud says:

    I have TF2 installed but haven’t bothered to play it since they went all achievement and hats crazy. Grinding in a game like that turns me off for some reason.

    • Arathain says:

      I’ve been playing TF2 on and off since its release. I’ve never ground for anything. Getting stuff is what happens just from playing the game. I guess if you wanted a particular weapon in a hurry you could go to an achievement server, but I’ve never felt the need. I play. It’s fun. Sometimes I get stuff.

    • Freud says:

      I am kinda compulsive gamer so if there is a better gun to grind for, I will. So I have to trust the game developers to have better judgment than I have and not include pointless grinding incentives just for the sake of having them. Hence, TF2 with stuff to grind for means I either play and grind or I don’t play. So I tend to stay away from games with grinding for no real reason. I have to save myself for games like Diablo 3 where grinding have a point.

      I am well aware that these days every developer assumes everyone loves achievements.

    • Mad Doc MacRae says:

      It’s funny to hear this sort of comment about TF2 and World of Tanks, another game accused (with maybe a little more validity) about being “grindy.”

      In both games, the “grind” is to play the game. In TF2, grinding is shooting mercenaries of the other color of yourself. That’s also the point of the game. In WoT, grinding is shooting tanks of the other team. That’s also the point of the game.

      Do you the problem lies with the developer or the player in this instance?

    • Freud says:

      All kinds of grinds are per definition “playing the game”. I don’t see how that justifies cramming them into every game. Team Fortress worked before grinding for hats or grinding for guns came along. I find the idea that players ‘level’ in multiplayer shooters silly. At best it is a waste of time, at worst it creates imbalances for no real reason.

      I know that some gamers can’t get enough of these things. Even renting and playing games they dislike on Xbox just to get a higher Gamerscore. Which I guess in the minds of developers prove they are on the right track.

    • Vinraith says:

      “Grind” is often misused these days, usually to simply mean “I don’t like playing this game.” What it used to mean is “dull and repetitive action necessary to progress to presumably more entertaining parts of the game.” If simply playing TF2 counts as “grind” for you, I think you’d be done with the game whether there were hats and new guns or not.

    • Freud says:

      I am not claiming to be representative of anything. Just stating that when I found out you had to unlock guns and stuff I had no desire to even try it (same with MW2), because I am not looking to unlock stuff when playing multiplayer shooters. I am too much of a compulsive completist.

    • Dominic White says:

      I was just about to say exactly what Vinraith typed. Grind isn’t merely ‘something that takes time’. It’s the padding/filler that they put in to bulk out a game with otherwise limited content.

      TF2 is the opposite of grind. There was ONLY the plain gameplay to begin with (and everyone was happy with it), but they’ve added optional extra bits of gameplay on top of it. It is the anti-grind.

  15. Steelfists says:

    # Denby went to New York. He tried to do the first level of Deus Ex for real. Man!

    This reminds me, when are we going to see some more RPS criminal acts?

    Like this: http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2008/09/30/rps-criminal-acts-special-deus-ex-3-break-in/

  16. Pianosaurus says:

    By the way, Kieron, “Interpretations of myself”-guy has now posted:

    If you’re here from RPS, I’m not Alexander Ocais. I don’t know why they thought that…

    It all depends on what you meant by “he”, I suppose.

  17. Daniel Johnston says:

    Hi Andy,
    Might be coming to your thing at World’s End Finsbury Park later. You do realise you’ve put your musical on the busiest weekend of the year, right? I should be in Gascony or hanging out with sexy, sexy bisexuals instead of watching you blow up musicians and dancing girls.

    There are explosions, right?

    • AndrewC says:

      Yeah, I have realised the mistake of booking the Saturday of the Bank Holiday. And I thought all the smart people *didn’t* travel on the bank holiday…

      Anyways, remember that the pervier the sex the less interesting the person and that, yes, there will be explosions.

  18. M says:

    Thanks a lot for the link. I’m interested to see what people think about these things, and what other ideas they can come up with. Games journalism doesn’t get looked at enough!

  19. Daniel Johnston says:

    Well there’s a surprise. Reply-to function screws up again – this was intended for AndrewC.

    RPS: move to Drupal! Or sort out the nested commenting, at any rate.

  20. RogB says:

    Demis ‘Roussos’ Hassabis will always be Mr ‘Infinite polygon engine’ to me.

  21. unaco says:

    Thanks for that Kieron… I have 3 weeks break from my PhD in Computational/Theoretical Neuroscience*, and I have vivid memories of Republic:TR, and so HAD to click the Hassabis article… Now I’m back in work mode, on a Sunday evening. Thanks.

    *(which shall be spent playing Call of Pripyat and finishing The Witcher, so I can finally stop avoiding any mention of The Witcher 2).

  22. Radiant says:

    STUDENTS
    It’s called hard work and grind.
    Get used to it you bums.

    • Kid A says:

      I worked bloody hard to get into my first choice university, and so did a lot of people who didn’t even get in. I despise the implication by certain of the older generation that all students are lazy, good-fer-nothing fools who have it so much easier than you all did. If anything, being a student now, with increased fees, increased cost of living and the difficulty of finding a job to avoid being £30,000 or more in debt, makes being a student considerably harder than it was, say, twenty years ago.

    • Kadayi says:

      @Kid A

      5 years from now you’ll look back and laugh at those remarks

    • Chris D says:

      Kid A has a fair point. It’s definitely harder being a student now than it was when I was studying. (iI was lucky enough to be among the last who got a grant rather than a loan.) You don’t get to coast through and still have a decent chance of walking into a job any more. Greater competition, a pile of debt and no guarantee of a job at the end of it mean it’s tough being a student these days.

      Less mean spirited and ignorant remarks please. Anyone would think we were just a bunch of grumpy old men.

    • geldonyetich says:

      Sounds great, Radiant! I’m pulling myself up by my bootstreps! I’ll take some hard work and grind! Gimme, gimme, gimme!

      Oh, wait, nobody is hiring? Hard working company men are currently hounding doors ahead of me without getting hired either? The people who will hire me expect me to work for free, illegally, putting those company men out of work?

      Well, that sort of shoots your suggestion full of holes. Thanks for nothing, Radiant.

    • Radiant says:

      It’s not hard doing A levels or getting a degree; you just do the work in front of you.
      Millions of people have done it.
      And it’s not easier now nore was it harder back then
      ‘Back then’ [or now for you] it was just a major part of your life.

      So great you have to work shit jobs and now you are owed what exactly?

      Are you fucking around with video games and commentating on random websites?
      Then you’re not doing enough.

      Apropos of nothing Kid A; you have a blog called drug crazed.
      A blog about things you found on the internet.

      Do the work. It’s not hard there’s just lots of it.

    • Radiant says:

      It’s not about pulling your finger out blah blah.
      It’s about realising the enormity of what’s a head of you and dealing with it.

      On a very serious point if no one is hiring then do something else.
      The world is fucked right now; volunteer with an NGO and get involved.

      @geldonyetich you have a blog called Digitally Staving Off Boredom

    • DrGonzo says:

      I’m not sure what the names of their blogs has to do with anything. And simply saying things are easier now proves nothing. It’s you opinion not fact, and considering you aren’t doing the current A levels, I’m not sure how you can comment.

    • DrGonzo says:

      Sorry for the double post, but James Flynn did research into this. He got people to take current IQ tests. Then older IQ tests and they got much higher IQs in the the old test. This is because IQ tests have to be made harder all the time to account each generation becoming smarter than the previous. Lots of what Flynn says is a bit weird though to be honest.

    • Kadayi says:

      @Radiant

      I think they have vague aspirations of becoming games Journalists, because after all that’s where the big bucks are.

    • Kid A says:

      Firstly, the blog isn’t mine, I merely write for it. I do so in my spare time, for fun, not money or to get into games journalism – I’m taking a degree in History and then going into teaching (hopefully). Said blog will be relocating to a new website, with the current writers taking (again, unpaid, for the love of it) positions as the writing staff shortly. And in any case, the names of the websites I write for and the fact that I do so have no bearing on the argument whatsoever, so why on earth they were brought up, I have no idea – but do feel free to explain.
      And Radiant… I’m not even sure what point you’re trying to make. First you bitch at students as a whole by calling us “bums” and telling us to get used to hard work and grind, when most of us already are, and then you imply that, if we have time to play games and comment on sites such as this, even during our time off, we’re not working hard enough?
      And as for suggesting we volunteer with an NGO… how is that going to help any student get a job? An internship, even a dirty unpaid one, gives you experience in the career you, presumably, intend to pursue. Working with the Red Cross or Oxfam, while an entirely worthy thing to do, does not.

    • geldonyetich says:

      @geldonyetich you have a blog called Digitally Staving Off Boredom

      And it’s infinitesimally higher quality than what your link is pointing at.

    • Hentzau says:

      That word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

    • geldonyetich says:

      That word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

      Upon consulting dictionary.com, I would like to confirm your suspicions. You’d think it’s another way of saying “infinitely”, but nooo.

    • RQH says:

      @Radiant:

      Yes, clearly anyone who wants a job should do nothing all day every day except work at getting a job.
      Because clearly it’s just like playing a fucking JRPG or MMO and if you just put in enough time, suddenly a job that wasn’t there previously will appear. Can you give me your email address so that if I’m ever unemployed, I know who to log how I spend my time with? /sarcasm.

      Here’s some news to chew on: the world doesn’t operate as a perfectly fair system in which the hard-workers are rewarded with jobs and the bums hang out on the internet all day. It’s a perfectly fair system in which some bums make millions of dollars and some hard workers barely get by, and it’s all fucking random. The rain falls on the righteous and the wicked, and all that. So instead of trying to keep track of who’s really trying hard enough, shouldn’t we be saying “Wow, brother, that really sucks. If I can find anything for you, I’ll let you know, and you let me know if there’s anything I can do to help?” I worked my arse off to get the job I have now, but I was also very, very lucky. I know plenty of hard-working people with my degree and nothing to show for it, except student loan letters they nervously avoid opening because they know they can’t pay them.

      Personal responsibility and systemic justice can and must meet; they’re not mutually exclusive.

      Also: regarding being a student, I knew maybe three people in college who didn’t have jobs while doing a full course load in college. Very few people have the luxury of being just students anymore.

    • The Hammer says:

      @Radiant:

      What an intensely unpleasant and unreasonable attitude you have.

    • Tom O'Bedlam says:

      I’ve been trying to think of something clever and avoid ad hom but I can’t think of anything, Radiant, you’re a ghastly tit.

    • Radiant says:

      STUDENTS
      Stop moaning.

    • Tetragrammaton says:

      I wonder what this paragon of personal industriousness does for a living?

    • Keep says:

      @RQH: Exactly, it’s all about luck.

      I’ve got a nice job at the moment – not very secure, but the work itself is alright. I worked damn hard looking for anything (and in a foreign city to boot) and over four months heard back from no more than five of all the jobs I applied for, and all saying basically ‘Thanks, but sod off’.

      Before that, back home, I spent half a year drawing the dole while looking for any kind of work before I finally got one in a newsagents in a dodgy part of town with junkies and gurriers shitting on me while I tried to go about my job.

      Before that, I got called for one interview, but didn’t get it.

      I couldn’t even count how many jobs I applied for between those times.

      So I’m over a year out of college now, a year spent working my arse off looking for a job, and in all that time I’ve had all of three lucky breaks to show for my efforts, and one of them didn’t come through for me, and one of them was for a really shitty situation that – I don’t want to sound entitled but – I shouldn’t have had to put up with after earning a degree, and it’s only the last that has me able to say “Wow I am bloody lucky amn’t I?”

      How does that make sense?

    • Kid A says:

      I get the feeling Radiant is either:
      - Someone who went through university on grants/scholarship/parents’ money
      or
      - Someone who thinking all that book-larnin’ in them big school-houses is awfy like witchcraft t’me.

      Anyway, shouldn’t such a productive member of society as yourself be out working hard and grinding away? It would be an awful shame if you were expecting any more of students than yourself…

    • cruize says:

      KID A, you’re going to become a teacher. Job guaranteed.

    • Kadayi says:

      @cruize

      Let’s hope not. Personally I’m a bit fan of teachers having a bit of real life experience of something else Vs going straight from being taught to teaching.

    • Radiant says:

      STUDENTS
      Get over yourselves.

    • Kid A says:

      RADIANT
      Stop being such a dick and actually defend your position – if you can.

    • Kadayi says:

      @Kid A

      What exactly does he have to defend against? Your feeble attempts at retorts?

    • Kid A says:

      Radiant has implied that all students who are posting on this site aren’t working hard enough, and that we all need to get used to hard work and grind if we want a job. When presented with students who work hard, grind away, and only don’t have a job because of the ridiculous expectations of those few companies that are hiring in this economic climate, he simply dismisses us with “get over yourselves”.
      Forgive me if I’m just being an uppity young whippersnapper, but I’ve grown rather accustomed to people defending their views on this instead of just being snarky about it and hoping it goes away…

    • Kadayi says:

      @KiD A

      Actually what he said and what you think he said are entirely different things. You just haven’t realised it yet. Let’s recap: -

      “On a very serious point if no one is hiring then do something else.”

      That is not bad advice.

  23. Kadayi says:

    @Chris D

    Regardless of what happens in the real world I don’t believe academic standards have suddenly upped over the last 5 years. a 1 St from 5 years ago would still be a 1 St now. So this idea that being a student is suddenly much harder doesn’t really make sense from an academic view point. Debt? Well as you aren’t paying that until you’ve left one can hardly really say it’s an issue. Employment? Again that’s not exactly an issue whilst you are a student. See being a graduate now might be a lot harder, but being a student isn’t. Student, graduate are distinct things no?

    • DrGonzo says:

      I don’t think the difficulty comes from the exams themselves, or the courses. It comes from there being a lot more competition nowadays. This year 180,000 people tried to get into uni’s through clearing and there were only 18,500 spaces. The same could be said of graduates and jobs.

      Although, at the same time I don’t think things are much harder now, just that they are no easier.

      Plus, no one ever thinks people are getting smarter. Better grades means it’s easier. If people were getting lower grades people would say that kids are getting dumber, not that exams were getting easier.

    • Archonsod says:

      Well, it’s more to do with the league tables and the fact that examination bodies have to sell their papers to schools (who naturally want the easiest paper, because they get higher passes and thus move up that all important league table), but once you hit university level that’s a non-issue (although universities are now complaining they’re needing to do an increased amount of foundational work prior to starting the syllabus).

      You can blame Labour for it really. The value of a degree has always been relative scarcity rather than what it taught you. As we move towards 50% graduate population, then it goes from being a mark of above average academic attainment to being the average, and employers rarely want to hire the average.

  24. Urthman says:

    The GTA article ridiculously gives the impression that GTA is only inappropriate for children if you choose to play it that way, but of course when he says this:

    He asked very excitedly if he could get the bad guys too. With a huge smile I pressed R3 to initiate the Vigilante Missions. It was as if his imagination had come to life. He was taking down delinquents left and right.

    He means he had his four-year-old son play the game mode where you drive around and bloodily kill criminals, either by running them down with your car or shooting them with guns or blowing them up with missiles or grenades or setting them on fire so they can burn to death while screaming in pain.

    • Dominic White says:

      That’s about par for what comes out of the mind of a 5-year-old.

      http://axecop.com/

    • Carolina says:

      He means he had his four-year-old son play the game mode where you drive around and bloodily kill criminals, either by running them down with your car or shooting them with guns or blowing them up with missiles or grenades or setting them on fire so they can burn to death while screaming in pain.

      And the problem is…?

  25. DigitalSignalX says:

    Pictures of child-Leigh peeking around an apple II = best Sunday News EVER.

  26. Miles of the Machination says:

    Damn Bit-Tech. Stealing our thunder.

  27. MycoRunner says:

    I take issue with some of the rushed opinions of New York, my home. A city is a living thing, characterized by it’s people, which you do not know. The culture is different, and the environment forces us to develop a thick skin and sometimes a gruff exterior. The rude new yorker is not the norm but the exception, they’re just the loudest and most easily recognizable. The majority are nice, kind compassionate people who are at the same time wary and sometimes hard to approach on the street. The street isn’t the best place to meet people in New York.

    Of course, all of that doesn’t mean this city is for you; it might not jive with your groove. Or something. And it aint clean.

    Also, what is up with the logging in to wordpress? I log in, then link back to the site where I’m magically not logged in. What?

    • MycoRunner says:

      Aaaand it didn’t reply to the right post. Also now it seems I’m logged in because I don’t have to enter a caption or a username and email address.

  28. Shower Caddy says:

    you should always be careful with recruitment agencies because some of them are just scammers `~”