Facebook: the next step in gaming?

Facebook may very well be the next step in video gaming as it takes on more and more aspects that connect it with the gaming community. This is only an extension of the sites’ goal to connect people socially over the Internet. Online gaming has become a way of networking in and of itself, allowing you to interact with people who you would not normally be able to. This interaction extends beyond the game and ties can be made between people that have never met before. Though it may not be the normal way in which we connect to each other it is most certainly promotes community and interaction between users.


It has become nearly impossible to log into Facebook without getting one notification or another alerting you of one game invite or another. In this way, Facebook has become nothing more than just anothergame portal providing games for people to play. These games for the most part are fun little flash games that allowi you to interact with friends and others. These games do have their fun moments, allowing people to see how their friends and family play, giving bragging rights to some extent. Such games like Farm Ville and Mobsters2 are examples of the games that can be found on Facebook. Every day there is a new game on Facebook. In that sense the gaming potential of Facebook becomes close to infinite, with its never ending pool of games to draw from.

Sometime in November, Xbox plans to release their Facebook app which allows its users to update their Facebook status from their consoles. It is expected that this will also update whenever you earn an achievement in a game or start playing a game. This is just another sign of how Facebook is becoming integral to gaming. Gaming is becoming progressively more about socializing than the actual game-play in and of itself. The very trend of multiplayer gaming encourages this ability to share and socialize, so it seems only natural that it would extend beyond the bounds of traditional gaming as the world constantly becomes even more interconnected thanks to the internet.

Even if Facebook is not the future of gaming, it is certain that many game portals on the Internet will adapt and borrow from Facebook, making use of the concepts which enabled Facebook to grow at such a rapid rate. In an attempt to borrow from this success, these sites will try and cater to the growing desire of the public to be able to share their results with their friends and family, letting them know what they are up to sharing these results with everyone.

Farmville Ad

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Halloween, is it most fun holiday of the year

It’s getting close to the end of October and Halloween season is on everyone’s mind. There are three phases that a person goes through when Halloween rolls around, and each one involves being dressed in a costume; whether it’s creepy, cute, or just plain hilarious. Halloween is the time of year when people get to show off, use their imaginations and just go out and have fun. It’s the time when a kid can eat all the candy he or she wants, and mom and dad won’t tell you not to (this is assumed of course). It’s a time when people may come up with clever ways to scare those who enter their front yards, and of course, there’s the pranks and the parties.

Phase 1:

The first phase of Halloween for everyone will probably bring back plenty of childhood memories: Trick-or-treating. Kids dress up in whatever costumes they want, go out into the neighborhood and collect as much candy as they can from the neighbors who will have a bucket, bowl or basket of goodies waiting. Halloween is always fun for children. It’s always nice to answer your door and see what the neighborhood kids came up with for their costumes this year. For some neighbors, it might be the only time that the neighborhood kids are happy to see you. All children need to know how to do for halloween is say two things, “trick-or-treat!” and of course, “thank you” (it’s good to be polite).

Phase 2:

This is the phase that not everybody goes through for Halloween, usually only kids who like to be daring. Obviously trick-or-treating becomes overrated eventually. Kids will stop wanting to do it because the older they get, the more it begins to feel a childish. So when kids become adolescents, what are they to do on Halloween night? There’s only one fun thing to do: go out and prank the neighbors houses. Pranks consist primarily of a house being bombarded by eggs, or covered in toilet paper. Pranksters usually come out late too, after all the children are done trick-or-treating. Getting caught in the act of performing these pranks by the cops is a guarenteed arrest, but that doesn’t make it any less fun.

Phase 3:

This is the final phase before a person becomes a parent handing out candy. Seeing as this is Radford, most people know this phase all too well. It gets to be later in the teenage years, coming out of high school and going into college. Trick-or-treating is overrated, and even pranking the neighbors’ houses seems kind of immature now, so what does that leave? There’s only one thing left to do, and here at Radford, it’s a year-round deal: partying! In college, that’s the only thing students think about when they think of Halloween, partying. It’s always fun to see what clever costumes people can come up with. Halloween is the one night that a college student can go out and be someone other than themselves.

After going through all three of these phases, usually the only thing left to do is get a house and start handing out candy to the kids as you watch them begin their Halloween adventures. Also, be sure to keep an eye out for pranksters, they won’t approach anyone’s house who’s watching them. Halloween is a great holiday. From all the staff of the Whim, we wish you a happy Halloween!

Ghosts Will Surely Haunt You

When I saw the preview for “Ghosts of Girlfriends Past” I was really excited and could not wait to see it. I love Jennifer Garner as an actress and I can tolerate Matthew McConaughey with his slow, seducing, laid-back southern accent. But boy was I wrong, because from the minute I started the film to the very end I did not laugh once and was left stunned asking myself

Street Fighter 4, back to the basics

In the fourth installment of the Street Fighter franchise, all of your favorite characters are back in the new take on the arcade game. You battle through story mode, making your way to the final battle as you unlock characters and alternative colors. This game is a classic throughback to all those people who loved the earlier editions of this game.

Game Play

Game play can be downright intense. Even on the easiest setting you can feel overwhelmed as you battle your way through arcade mode, fighting the various opponents available. The game runs rather fluidly though there were times when I wished it ran smoother; but over-all it’s fine. The cut scenes prior to the fights can at times be extremely funny and some of them actually give the game a bit of a story, barely any real story at all. There is an new addition to this game where the EX moves allow you to absorb energy from special attacks and use it to recharge your health. This can be useful if you time it right, allowing you to gain back just enough energy to push through to your eventual victory. All of the specials are back, along with a few new ones. The configuration for combat follows the old rock, paper, scissors format. This means one move beats another and then another move beats the first type. The game in and of itself might be ideal for those who play fighting games, for the people who pick this up for the casual experience they will be disappointed. The controls are somewhat difficult and the easiest setting can been very difficult.

The Good

The game’s graphics are a big step up from the previous games, though they managed to keep that sort of old-school arcade look with the extremely disproportionate body figures. Not to mention the graphics feel 2-D at times even when they are 3-D. This is not a bad thing. In my opinion, it allows for a continued enjoyment of the game’s heritage. The backgrounds to the fights are also a big plus. A great deal of time and detail has clearly been put into these backgrounds, which range from a random parking lot to a stadium full of people falling into the arena you are fighting in. There are a bunch of unlockable characteristics, and while not adding much to the game itself. They do add a nice bit of customization to the characters.

The Bad

There are a bunch of bad things about this game, though the majority more or less have to do with your level of experience in fighting games. If you are new to fighting games then you will be in for a shock. The controls are difficult to master, coming out downright clunky and awkward. The voicing, while not a key component, could use some work. Also, arcade mode defaults you to play ranked matches while connected to the Internet. It takes some doing, but there is a way to turn this off. It’s just a pain to find and more than likely whoever is playing will become frustrated to the point that they will disconnect so they can make it through the game without receiving the overly annoying “New challenger” notification.

Whim Rating:3/5

Official Trailer

Video from an outside source

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Male body image in society

With a desire to be more muscular, men have taken drastic measures for the sake of having a body that is unrealistic and most likely unachievable. Television and magazine advertisement messages have raised the bar of what the ideal man should look like, making men feel self-conscious and heading to a point where they damage their own bodies.

The Adonis Complex is an obsession with muscle size and body building. One article says that it is a

Shut up about homosexuality, already

I must say, for the past couple of years, I feel that America has become more obnoxious about its problem with homosexuality. Every year it seems like someone out there has to speak out against gay marriage or homosexual acts or some other thing relating to a same sex scenarios. After a while, I have to say it just gets old, and on top of that, slightly disturbing.

When it comes to me with homosexual issues, I have absolutely no problem with homosexuality at all. I support gay marriage and funding for AIDS research. AIDS is not a gay disease but does affect the gay community in America. I even support the right for gay couples to adopt and/or have kids through in-vitro fertilization. I obviously consider myself very politically liberal on the subject. So then why should I tell the American people to shut up about it?

Because I am tired of hearing about it, that

The end of the paper books?

The book lovers within all of us cry out as yet another electron reader is announced, signaling the beginning of the end. Imagine the concept of having thousands of books at your fingertips a simple tap away. That has become reality with the planned release of Barnes & Nobles “Nook” E-reader.

Electronic readers have been billed as the end of paper books, the end may be one step closer. Barnes & Noble recently announced that they are prepared to release an e-reader later this year. While at the hefty price of $259 it may not exactly be a book killer, but it is comparable similar devices on the marketcurrently. E-readers have been on the market for quite some time, providing electronic forms of paper back books. The fact that this is being pushed by Barnes & Noble puts a fair amount of weight behind the companies’ choice to provide this product.

The e-reader will be called the Nook. It will sport the most recent version of electronic paper. E-paper is a recent novelty and this version of it will be provided by E-inc. The Nook will also sport a wireless connection allowing it to connect to other Nooks along with a retailer’s Web site, enabling people to purchase books electronically. Purchases can be lent to friend’s Nooks for up to 14 days at a time. The Nook will also have a small touch screen for control and typing, making it among the most impressive e-readers to be released in the past few years.

The Nook will run on google’s micro-operating system known as Android. This OS is designed specificallyfor small mobile devices. The Nook will offer subscriptions to over 50 different news papers. With two gigabytes of internal memory, the Nook will be able to hold up to an impressive 1,500 books, and with the addition of a additional flash memory slot, it can hold a great deal more. It is hoped that eventually customers will be able to read e-books for free while inside of a Barnes & Noble store. Along with this option users will also be treated to special offers while inside the store that will pop up on the screen of the Nook.

While the Nook may not be a book-killer quite yet, but it is obviously a move in the right direction. As more and more of these e-reader devices flood the market, the prices will be certain to drop. It will not be long before people weigh the portability and ease of having a mass number of books at their fingertips with the price. It is entirely possible that paper books will eventually become a figment of the past.

Ad for the Nook.

Video from an outside source.

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Barnes & Noble

The battle of Fox News vs the White House

A free press is paramount to a thriving democracy; this much is true. Censorship in the media cannot and will not stand as long as people look beyond political posturing. However, just because a government does not outright outlaw contrary opinions, they can still move forward with comments that create a chilling effect. This seems to be the case in the onslaught of verbal warfare between the president

Paranormal Activity, does it live up to the hype?

I am a monstrously huge fan of horror movies, but I have not seen one in years that scared me to the point of screaming in horror. “Paranormal Activity looked like the answer to my petrifying prayers. This was a movie I have been looking forward since I first saw the TV spot a couple months ago. I even went online to demand it be released nationwide. Well, 1 million demands later, there was a nationwide release planned. Paranormal Activity” has been said to be one of the the scariest films of the year, perhaps even the decade. Could be true? Could this finally be the movie that can make audiences squeal in terrifying, horrific delight?

Not quite.

Plot Summary

Everyday, average couple Micah and Katie buy a video camera to record the not-so-average paranormal phenomenon that seems to be following Katie. At first, it is only noises and slamming doors waking the couple at night, but It quickly progresses into more violent and creepy happenings like footprints made in flour on the floor. Finally, Katie calls a physic who informs the couple that the entity in their home is very aggressive and he can do nothing for them. Micah then takes matters into his ownhands by going around the house cussing out the demon spirit (bad call) and then proceeds to borrow a Ouija board in an attempt to make contact. Unfortunately, his plan not only upsets Katie (who wants to take the smart approach to the situation and leave the evil spirit alone), but also causes even more disturbances, including possession. Katie is filmed doing things she can not remember in the morning, such as standing beside the bed for 3 hours like a creeper, staring at Micah while he sleeps. Katie begins having more blackouts and strange behavior, and Micah is lost on what to do. He suggests they leave the house (one of the view good ideas this guy has) and Katie agrees at first, but then changes her mind, saying “everything will be okay now.” That should have been a big red flag, and the audience can sense that something is about to go down, and we all know who it’s going to be. The end is sad, slightly reminiscent of The Exorcism of Emily Rose and The Exorcist , and too sudden. Paranormal Activity beats comparable films, like The Blair Witch Project, all to crap, but there could still have been more done with it if they had actually had a decent budget.

Is it worth your time?

The “home-video” feel to the movie makes the story seem more realistic, as Katie and Micah could be your next door neighbors. It actually puts me in the mind of Ghosthunters on the Scifi channel, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Sure, that kind of approach can make the audience feel a little let down in the special effects department, but that’s part of the fun of this movie.

As with any film, “Paranormal Activity” comes with its share of problems and goofs. There are times you can hear the main characters call each other by the wrong names, but the viewers would be to engrossed in the situation to even notice the first time around.

What this movie does bring to the table is something different, a change of pace from the usual serial killer/monster movie we are starting to see a trend of. If you’re a fan of the psychological horror, this film can mess with your head if you let it. But, if you walk in not looking for the thrill of becoming scared, you probably won’t find this movie very threatening in the nightmare department.

See it or Skip it?

See it. I admit, I was caught up in all the hype surrounding this movie and expected to have to sleep with the lights on for a night or two, but I was a little let down. Maybe I expected too much and my standards are too high. I know this film would have scared a lot of my friends, so this is why I’m saying, give it a chance. This might be a film for you. As a viewer, you need to let yourself get into the story, and that’s when you can really enjoy its subtle terror. On the other hand, you might find this film funny (I did), and even that is worth some entertainment points, but it still does not live up to the hype.

Final Result: See it or wait to rent it (with a big group of people at night. That might make it more fun.)

Check out the trailer:

Photo courtesy of Blumhouse Productions

Video courtesy of YouTube.com

Reasons why you should never quit

Here’s a message to all students here at Radford, and not just Radford, but anywhere, who believe that you have too much going on in life to be able to deal anymore. Some of you may be going through relationship problems. Some of you may be dealing with a family crisis. Some of you may have lost your job which was the only means to support yourself. And some of you may just be having trouble in classes or might feel like you don’t have any friends or anyone who really cares about you. Now, there are college students who respond to problems such as these by just sitting around skipping class or drinking or smoking marajuana all day. You don’t care about what happens to you anymore, because you feel so incredibly worthless that it just doesn’t matter anymore. Bullshit!

Have you ever read the story in the Bible about Job? If you have, you’d know that the story is about a man who is extremely wealthy. He has a family, owns tons of animals and has a lot of servants. Job basically has a perfect life and other people have every reason to be jealous. One day, Satan wants to see if Job will curse God if he loses everything, and God agrees to Satan’s challenge. Job loses everything: his land, family, servants, animals and money. He’s literally left with nothing at all. He doesn’t give up though, he holds onto his faith in God and as a result, Satan loses the bet and Job gets everything back and more.

Some of the world’s greatest figures were failures early in life. President Abraham Lincoln, the Prime Minister of Great Britain during World War II, Winston Churchill and Albert Einstein are just a few. They were all failures early in their lives. Just think; what if they had given up and decided to quit on life altogether? How would that have affected our lives today? They became some of the most famous people in history and did some pretty amazing things because they never sat down and decided to quit.

Now not everyone’s going to become a famous historical figure of course, but you shouldn’t just assume that because things aren’t going well, you should just give up. You can get involved in extracurricular activities, go out more, meet more people, talk to your friends or whatever it might take for you to stay positive. At Radford, there are plenty of things around for you to do. There are therapists if you feel you really need help, but if you get involved in something, hopefully it’ll lift your spirits. Who knows? You might very well become famous one day. You could run a business, be elected president or maybe be a television star. If you quit on life now, you’ll never know. Life is full surprises, and you should always be ready to embrace them, because you never know when they’ll present themselves to you.

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Video from: allthegospel on Youtube

South Park: Let’s Go Tower Defense Play!

Earlier this month, the producers of South Park, with the help of Microsoft and its game studios, produced the game South Park: Let’s Go Tower Defense Play!. The game is more or less a bigger version of a standard flash game. The story revolves around the town of South Park being attacked by various enemies. The player must protect the town from these invading forces of evil. The early part of the game is spent focusing a decent amount of time unlocking Kyle, Stan and Kenny. Though you start the game unlocking the original four characters, as the game continues there are opportunities to unlock more of the characters from South Park, each one playable.

Game Play

The game is more or less your standard tower defense game. The players runs around as their favorite character setting up towers to defend the pathways that lead into town. During this endevor you willface the evil forces of gingers, hippies, cows and more. The only real twist to the normal tower defense gameplay type is when it comes to the usage of the main characters from South Park. They work likemobile towers and are able to move from one side of the map to another, under control of the person playing, allowing one to shore up areas where defense looks as though it is going to fail. Another interesting addition to the over all game play is special powers that are specific to each character. For instance, Cartman’s power, once built up brings down fire, while Stan’s restores the town’s wealth which more or less acts as the towns health. A knocked down character stays down until another character comes to revive them, this has become an extremely common aspect in just about every game so it is no surprise to see it here.

The Good

This game is great for people who are fans of South Park. The dialog for the game is extremely amusing as Cartman or one of the other boys chimes in with some random comment about the enemies. The transition screens are funny, as well. The voicing for them fits in very nicely with the game’s concept. The scenes when your characters use their special powers are well done and well planned. The games multiplayer function is actually useful and encourages you to play with three other people in the harder parts of the game having some back up can be a good thing. The storyline is uniquely South Park in nature; your enemies are those who you have seen throughout the series which is a nice touch for South Park fans everywhere.

The Bad

There really isn’t all that much that is wrong with this game. There are times when the game play seems a bit glitchy where you try to attack one of enemy and attack and entirely different one. This can be truly annoying when you are attempting to prevent one enemy from slipping through and end up hitting and entirely different one, costing you the game. The music for the game can become annoying at times, but it’s well suited for the fast paced game play that comes with the tower defense genre.

Whim Rating: 4/5

Video from an outside source

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Two wild card races key for Johnson’s fourth straight

Jimmie Johnson is set to do something that is unprecedented in NASCAR and a rarity in other sports: four consecutive Sprint Cup championships. He now holds a commanding 90 point lead over second place Mark Martin, and only five drivers remain within one race of his lead. So should they go ahead and engrave the championship with his name on it? Not quite yet. The next two races will probably decide that.

NASCAR Sprint Cup racing can hold many surprises for the competitors as they race hard to bring home the title. Not everything can be in the drivers

A Taste for Diversity; it makes sense

On Monday, Sept. 28, I attended “A Taste for Diversity” at Dalton Hall for the third time. Just as I expected, it was yet again a fantastic program. This year, the event was coordinated junior, King Ohene Amponsem, and graduate Nana Takyi Kum, an alumni. Both are very active in supporting international programs. Their purpose with organizing a program like this is to educate Radford University about diversity and to promote further diversity on RU’s campus.

The program was filled with extraordinary dishes from all over the globe. I tried some Jewish/Israeli dishes served at Menutainment, which consisted of toasted bagels with lox, cream cheese, cr