Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Avatar Shmarketplace

As many of you already know, the XBOX Live Dashboard was once again updated today, bringing with it games on demand and the titular Avatar Marketplace. As a boy of varying extremes, this new addition would be all the more easier to deal with if I had strong feelings about it, whether they be good or bad. Unfortunately, I find the prospect of purchasing virtual clothes as being rather 'meh'.

Whilst the Lightsaber and Monkey Island props are amusing enough, overall it still feels a bit shit. Thinking about avatars in the wider sense of the word -you know, the kind you can have on OUR AWESOME FORUM - I always thought that half the fun was trawling the Internet for something that you feel represents you. I have agonised over forum avatars, just hoping that selecting that perfect gif will allow other users to know just how rad I think I am. Whether we admit to it or not, we are egotistical creatures who dearly value our sense of individuality. When Avatars were first introduced we would often be forced into creating the most obscure, even disturbing avatars (Token Gestures) in order to attain that sense of individuality. However, with the inclusion of deliberately 'quirky' items -the Monkey Island props, for example- even this option loses it's value.

As always, this is no ordinary moan. Microsoft need worry no more, for I - The Faux Bot - have compiled a list of items that would almost double the Avatar Marketplace's 'Radness Percentage'. (*)

1. 3-D Glasses.

It's a fact that in the 80's, all groups of Cronies had to have at least one dude with 3-D Glasses. Any bad guy with a crew that lacked a 3-D Glasses dude would have been laughed out of town. As such, they are the pinnacle of radness and need to be included.

2. Mike Haggar Costume.

Some of you may have figured out by now that I am slightly obsessed with Final Fight's Mike Haggar. It's partly because he can take Zangief and because he can piledriver a shark and is a full-time mayor of Metro City. However, it is mainly because as a man in his 40's, he has the balls to swagger around looking like Tom Sellick, topless save for the strap of his green dungarees. Any man with this much confidence deserves to be a hero and thus deserves to be immortalised as a downloadable costume for a pointless Avatar.

3. The ability to become a Zombie.

Who doesn't love Zombies? What? You!? Kindly do one, would you?

Right, now that ballbag has left we can go on imagining how amazing it would be for your Avatar to become zombified. Hopefully this sort of thing is an inevitable tie-in for upcoming titles such as Left4 Dead 2 and Dead Rising 2. If not, why not? However, in this eventuality, I propose that Microsoft look no further than George A. Romero's Dawn of The Dead. Next to that plaid-shirted zombie that nearly offs him, Flyboy, or Stephen is the coolest looking Zombie in the whole movie:

Give me that outfit, replete with blood stains, tears and head droop and I'll officially quit moaning forever. Unless I'm perfecting my Bub impression.

4. Kaneda's Bike.

As far as props go, the only thing I could think of was Kaneda's motorcycle from Akira. As a child, when I saw the animated version of Katsuhiro Otomo's manga, I knew that my life would not be complete until I owned THAT bike. The countless attempts to replicate a fully working version are testament to the fact that I am not the only one who holds this dream. It was and still is the coolest thing I have ever seen. Gimme.

What about you? Any thoughts on the update in general, or what items would you demand are included? I only ask because in the event that any of these are actually made available, they will all be exclusive to me in order to retain my individuality, so you'd better get thinking.

The Faux Bot

* The term 'Radness Percentage' is a registered trademark of 'The Faux Bot Radness Consultancy Group'. If you wish to increase your company's 'Radness Percentage' then please contact me directly for a quote.


vandalworks said...

ah kanedas bike. i can only dream for a real version of this incredibly gorgeous peice of machinery. i remember seeing someone make one for warhammer 40k many moons ago, that alone almost got me spending stupiid amounts of cash on little metal men. and aliens.

i have already purchased a piece of clothing, mainly because i had a few random points spare and fancied something different. seeing the light saber, i thought wow. seeing how much it was, i thought WOW??????

as for my three things i'd like for an avatar, it would have to be...

customisable tshirts
toy transformers
a blow up doll.

how can anyone not look cool with one or all of these things. hell, i'd be happy with a blow up transformer.

cr0nt said...

Actually the zombies thing may already be covered - I have a Left 4 Dead dash theme (which is the nicest I've seen to date) and it gives all the avatars a lovely green hue!

Agreed - I was hoping that my 200 points on Monkey Island would have gotten me my cotton swab... as a badge of honour, but no. Boo Lucasarts. Boo.