Tag Archives: Girolamo Savonarola

As crazy ideas go

OK, lets be clear, Ubisoft is not suddenly a good place (not judging on the massive amounts of pushed events), yet they have the advantage through Watchdogs 2. So what happens if the map is increased, what if it is close to identical to the real deal? Now we are going to add things, not some almanac we have to chase, but events we have to fix.

Consider San Francisco, now add episodes of Charmed, the Streets of San Francisco, Full House, Monk, The Circle, Blue Jasmine, the Rock, Bullet, Pursuit of Happiness, the Presidio, so many movies and TV series that were made and based in San Francisco, what if you have to fix it all, fix productions, get the rights scripts to the right people. Props to the right locations, Hunt for people out to get the actors (wink at the Dead pool) and so on. It has never been done before and what is more, it is a game that is expandable, that is the nice part of San Francisco. OK, Ubisoft has one hell of a legal predicament to work on, but it would be original, and it could be an eye opener for the nextgen systems. In all this, a stage to look forward to, and let not forget, the overwhelming group  of gamers, they do love their movies. So whilst I am brooding over the next part of my short story, this idea came into my head. 

So you start s a young executive (a real Joe does it all), has to get the actors to the set, has to get the props, has to place the crew and scripts. Yet the stage is not as straightforward. There are things he can delegate, and things he cannot delegate. For example, the diamond prop in the jewel store heist (one of the TV series) are also needed on the set of the Presidio, so you are racing from place to place, getting the right stuff and delegating the right tasks. And as we go from level to level, more stages, more scripts and more challenges. All this whilst you need to build up credibility, revenue and stage bigger margins. As the game goes forward there is the need for more of everything and over time as we add more and more series and movies, the unlocks increase. It was only a first thought, but something like this has not been done before and it is not easy, some studios are very protective of their IP, so the game is not an easy fit, but it could be a nice challenge. I wonder who at Ubisoft had looked at that, with the larger need for exclusive gaming, Ubisoft has its challenges ahead of itself.

Anyway, it is more appealing than the hundreds of messages about a fly on the presidential debates. And whilst the world watched the, I had a first inkling of a new idea, I feel that I am on a roll. Yup, I have earned my mac and cheese tonight. 

In light of all the remasters and re-releases (which is still a good thing), I came up with an optional new game. I am still thinking o it and also trying to convince myself to create more new gaming IP, you see so much has already been done, coming up with a brand new IP is a much larger challenge than one thinks. I had the idea of a time thief, but the stage is much too large. The idea came to me when Assassins Creed gave us the original bonfire of the vanities DLC. The person was real, there was a Girolamo Savonarola, he did start ‘ethic cleansing of art’ by having his own kristalnacht, so what happens when you go to the night, copy the artwork and steal to original without being seen. As such what can be done before 7 February 1497, what can only be done on the night, with art treasures the in today’s world would exceed a billion dollars. Hundreds of pieces of art. So how far would you get? Being spotted ends the game, and makes you restart it, or you can retire, but only the successful retire rich. And it is not the only time this happened.

The obvious moment is WW2, yet it was not the only case, WW1 has had its share of events, there is the 17th century fire that destroyed much of Brussels, 1654, a gunpowder magazine stored in a former convent exploded in the Dutch town of Delft (I lived there, which is why I know), destroying the works of Carel Fabritius. An optional art education on top of all this. The 1734 fire of Seville’s royal palace, destroyed hundreds of pieces of art, including works by Diego Velázquez, Leonardo d Vinci, Anthony van Dyck, El Greco, and Raphael. And there are several of these events. So what happens when we realise the tie theft is very very expensive (power for time travel and so on), so one can only progress if enough is ‘saved’. Two ideas in one day, not a bad call, is it? And if you wonder why all the big houses cannot one up with original idea’s, I will shrug my shoulders. I got this done with a gatorade and the need for Mac and cheese in my belly. All this before 11PM, sometimes I even scare myself. So whilst there is a Star Wars movie in the background, I wonder if anyone has considered a slightly more arcade version of Knights of the Sky, and in light of Star Wars Squadrons, did anyone consider a viper simulator for the Battlestar Galactica. It is merely an idea, but the series has plenty of fans, and shooting down Cylons? Not the worst way to spend time (sorry Grace Park). We see the easy marks, yet how many had considered Time theft? We can go 1st person (thief), take a Commando 2 approach guide several characters, use a third person approach (Dead Space), all whilst we consider the choices here, I am considering another game. Oh well, there is no stopping the creative mind.

Have a great weekend (Friday is prep-day for weekend).

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Is it offensive?

It is Saturday evening and I am about to chase up a different side. It all started with the Guardian article (at http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/30/angela-lafranchi-who-links-abortion-and-cancer-stars-at-families-congress) and as a non-medical scientist I took great offense to it. Not just that, I found much of the article offensive to some degree. Why you might ask?

Well, that is as ever a fair question. I remain a Christian. I have a Jewish background and the one element (my maternal grandmother) is the one unknown. If she is Jewish, then so am I. My father was a Catholic and I grew up with Catholic links. Yet at some point I turned slightly Anglican. This is all relevant! You see, the Jewish background of my grandfather was kept a secret. I never knew (until 2003), after that I went digging a little and it seemed that my grandfather had a proud heritage, his family, the Lazarus family has links that go back to the pre-Victorian setting of Exeter (UK) going back at least to the mid-18th  century. That is a pretty good achievement, so why keep it a secret?

I grew up being a Catholic boy, but I was never that religious, I had my dark moments and like many youthful man, I so loved my neighbours wife (especially when she was sunbathing) as I was only 17. So, I was pretty much a kid like many others. I turned Anglican, like some others when I learned of the child abuse issues and moreover the way the Catholic Church (in several nations) dealt with it. It made me sick to see such injustice. How does it all link together? Well, there are two sides, the first one is how I react to some information the other is how I want to regard this information.

Part of this article reflects like it is a gathering of loons, which is in part offensive because the average Christian is not a loon, yet they are painted in that corner. It becomes even more offensive when their ‘star’ speaker is Angela Lanfranchi, who links abortions to breast cancer. This is not only wrong; this discredited view should be regarded as psychic assault against Christian women. The American Cancer Society (at http://www.cancer.org/cancer/breastcancer/moreinformation/is-abortion-linked-to-breast-cancer) and several other highly reputable sources all over the world state the following “Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women (aside from skin cancer), and it’s the second leading cancer killer in women. Because it can be a deadly disease, it’s one that many women fear” the information then gives us “A 2013 Danish study of over 25,000 women who had at least one full-term pregnancy found no link between induced abortion and breast cancer risk over 12 years of follow-up” this is just one of many studies, yet enough evidence has been given to give proper claim that this link does not exist, so I wonder why Angela Lanfranchi is currently not being investigated and prosecuted for possible psychic assault, I regard the act of scaring women into a pro-life stance is just plain criminal.

This is the most visible, but not the only part that I found offensive. There was more and this part falls to Fred Nile, leader of the NSW Christian Democrats stating “All this softening up of legislation is because we don’t have committed Christians there“. I disagree, we have plenty of committed Christians, but we also have a separation of state and church. I have nothing against any leader who at times as a Christian has moral stances, which he should be allowed to state. Yet, the vast majority of our population has made certain choices in life and these values have been democratically adopted.

He then speaks of a view “A drug-free society. A pro-life society. No pornography or prostitution. A society with wholesome public entertainment. A God-honouring, Christ-centred Christian nation“, I do not agree with it, I oppose it, but I also refuse to personally attack him for it. He has a right to his view as we all allow for a freedom of speech, but I will address this in a moment.

We agree that there are courts, there is rule of law and there is freedom of religion, so why do we see the quote “Catch the Fire pastor Daniel Nalliah founded the anti-Islamic political party Rise Up Australia and famously blamed the Black Saturday bushfires on Victoria’s abortion laws” laws do not set fires, people do, Islam has a peaceful foundation whilst the Catholic church has eradicated at least 17 civilisations, yet they would state that these 17 civilisations were all led by the devil (an assumption on my side).

The article ends with one of the vilest of proclamations “He said 90% of all the world’s poverty was caused by the breakdown of the family unit“, so who is not in poverty? Would that not be those in their Ivory towers (like New York), how many of them are Christians? How many are Atheists and more important, how many of them have a family? Family breakdown did not cause poverty, yet exploitation and greed caused poverty which led to family breakdowns all over the world.

This is all so offensive because the bulk of the Christians are people like me and many of you readers. We have a firm foundation of rational, so why are the loons always so linked to Christianity?

It seems like a self-answering question but it is not.

In regards to my view of abortions I remain on the fence. Pro-life wants to set it to zero, which is just wrong, but the fact that it is so openly available is also not right. There are cases of rape and incest where a woman does not want it, it should be her right to remove that what was forced upon her. The other side is also not acceptable, the Christian woman who kept the baby, is her right, yet the criminal father cannot rely on any chance to be given citizenship. That is exactly what seems to have happened in the UK, the man as the bleeding heart refugee lawyer won the argument that “his right to family life would be violated if he were removed to Nigeria“; the Strasbourg court seems to have little regards for the victims of violent crimes. Can anyone blame the position of Theresa May and her goal to remove the Human Rights Act?

Yes, this is still all about the Christians!

I personally am all for a drug free society, I am not against a pro-life society, but I feel that 100% pro-life is not acceptable either. So what is wholesome public entertainment? This is shown in the next quote “Without God they get filled with they get filled with pornography or terror or computer games“, well the bulk of all people are not violent, even if they have video games. Many are not in league with terror, yet Christians have annihilated the bulk of all non-Christian civilisations, so how are Christians allowed to exist? As for pornography, or better stated ‘erotic art’, the Catholic Church has founded a whole cadre of them. One of the more renowned masters of the erotic arts is Agostino Carracci, who is also responsible for “The Last Communion of St. Jerome” (not the Botticelli edition). So what would you do? Burn those paintings too?

Perhaps these Christians want to take a look at their own past. In early 1497, a priest named Girolamo Savonarola started a few bonfires, this event would later be known as the bonfires of the vanity. Hundreds upon hundreds of paintings and writings were destroyed as they were regarded sinful and immoral. The only person to go to these lengths lately was Adolf Hitler (Kristallnacht), so yes, that is a group of people we all should relate to (you do understand that this is a sarcastic remark?)

In my view such people of visibility have always used religion and the church to proclaim a new era whilst basically bullying behind scriptures. When we look at Savonarola we see “while Savonarola intervened with the king, the Florentines expelled the ruling Medici and, at the friar’s urging, established a popular republic. Declaring that Florence would be the New Jerusalem, the world centre of Christianity and ‘richer, more powerful, more glorious than ever’“, so a seat for the promise of power, something we have never seen before. That last quote came from ‘Savonarola The Rise and Fall of a Renaissance Prophet‘, which gives us another message of a want-to-be-a-prophet-through-violence.

Yet, this is not the church, this is not Christianity. I have seen it in several ways. The mother and her two daughters working every Friday a morning as a volunteer, doing not just good deeds, but simple acts of goodness that are pivotal in making this a better world. Those who speak in kindness even as junks lash out in verbal abuse. There is much wrong in this world and true Christians try hard to make it a better world. They are not visible as speakers or in a forum. They volunteer for the SES, help with houses in need, they are with organisations like Marine Rescue; they work weekends for the heart foundation and the cancer council. They are not in the limelight, yet they are all true Christians. Some are Anglican, some are Catholics and for the most none have any anti-Islamic sentiments.

So here is my opposition to the entire article, whatever they call a ‘family congress’ seems to be a collection of religious loons. God did not speak there, because this message as we read it is about a military tactic. It read that their approach is about segregation, isolation and extermination. None of these tactics are god’s words, they are the words of man and the power hungry drive behind it. After all this one perfectly valid question remains. Why do they call this a ‘World Congress of Families conference’? Isn’t every family made of the children of other families and are they not made from individuals? If the smallest element in an equation is ignored, how can the formula make sense, or even more, be valid to begin with?

 

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