World War III is upon us!

Fortunately for humanity, the battlefield will be virtual.

Heroes is back, and just as awesome as it was before. Wish they hadn’t taken another break, but that’s irrelevant now. If you haven’t been watching it, go watch it now. If you have and haven’t read the graphic novels, go read them now. The graphic novels started out as little backstories and extra info that was not really necessary to enjoy Heroes. They don’t have much in them (six pages isn’t much to work with), and they still aren’t necessary, but since they’ve lately been adopting an episodic approach to coincide with the show, I think with the last few they really start to add something to the story beyond just background details. They really do enhance the experience (in large part because the creators of the show are allowing them to be the sole source of some significant plot details).

Boom Boom Rocket (Xbox Live Arcade) is a lot of fun. Unfortunately I find that I’m feeling lethargic today, as if my connection to my body is weak. I gave up trying to keep up with the beats on Hard.

The Xbox 360 demo for Command & Conquer 3 is out, though. I started the tutorial mission but I haven’t finished it yet (my wife and daughter wanted to watch American Idol). The tutorial seems to teach more than the one for Battle for Middle Earth 2 did–namely, the D-pad shortcuts (which seem very useful). I’ll have to try them on BFME2 next time I play it (hopefully it has them, too; I think it does…).

I’m supposed to be putting effort into this hypnotherapy course, and I want to do it, but I just keep wanting to work on my side project, Arianna. Every week, it seems, I find at least one or two articles or blog entries that read differently for me, because I know what I’m trying to achieve with Arianna and believe I can pull it off with some degree of success (because I have feasible ideas on how to implement most of it). Game development articles read, “Develop Arianna! We want to pay you money to license it!” Blog posts say, “There are difficult conundrums facing video game development. We’re thinking about them, so we may find some solutions, but it would be really great if you could just finish Arianna first so we could use yours instead.”

Of course I wonder if someone has already thought of what I’m trying to do and decided not to do it, or tried it and it didn’t work. But all the things I’ve read make me think that isn’t the case. The research papers I read help a lot, they’re great for design ideas, but none of them describes exactly what I’m doing. It’s very encouraging and motivating. So, for now, my hypnotherapy training is sort of a lower priority.

2 thoughts on “World War III is upon us!”

  1. Hmm, no… most media that intentionally use hypnotic effects are ads. Neuro-Linguistic Programming is a set of techniques for sales, marketing, and advertising that is based on hypnosis, and it’s used in lots of stuff. Ever wonder why medicine commercials always repeatedly tell you a long list of symptoms they supposedly help with? They’re using waking suggestions (a hypnotic technique studied extensively by Milton Erickson) to try to make you believe you have one or more of those symptoms so you’ll buy the drug. These days, I’m sure even well-intentioned marketers who don’t believe they’re using anything to do with hypnosis are, because the marketing training they received already incorporates elements of NLP without specifically mentioning so.

    So anyway, I’d worry that any use of hypnosis in games would just get twisted into more marketing, and in my opinion that would be deceptive (I don’t really like the idea of NLP, either). After all, it is a business. Obviously there could be positive uses for hypnosis in games… but I’ve never really thought about what they would be or how to implement them. Some things might be interesting, actually, because though you don’t have a therapist there to adapt to the reactions of the client, it is a game, with the ineractivity that entails. Perhaps when natural language processing gets a little better (it’s probably almost there, considering the automated phone systems where you don’t have to press numbers anymore), someone will come up with a game that helps people quit smoking or something. It’s not a bad idea.

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