My guest this week is Dan Hopper. As one third of A Week of Kindness, Dan has been seen in many hilarious videos including Guitar Hero Hidden Tracks. He's also the proprietor of the music blog Band Madness.
TALKING POINT You just bet someone your life you can beat them in Street Fighter 2. Who do you play as?
Dan: Blanka. If my life is at stake, I'm going to be too nervous to do Ryu's fireball correctly.
Dan: It's hard to see that hundred-hand slap coming if you're blind, deaf, and facing away from the machine.
Jeff: Did you know he does more damage per-punch than anyone in the game?
Dan: That's like saying Manute Bol is the tallest, and therefore best, basketball player.
Jeff: Well if I wanted to win, I think I'd go with Guile. It's been fifteen years since Street Fighter II came out, and scientists have yet to develop a successful defense against the slow-sonic-boom/fierce-punch combo.
Dan: Is yelling "That's cheap!" permitted in this life-and-death match?
Jeff: Definitely, though I would rather die than live with the dishonor of being cheap.
Dan: That's Lao Tzu, right? A terrific philosophy that applies to life as well. And GoldenEye. If you had to pick a game to bet your life on against someone, what would it be?
Jeff: Super Puzzle Fighter II.
Dan: Wow, no wonder this other person wants you dead.
Jeff: It's such a fantastic game, but very few people play it. I have never really gotten a chance to see how good I am, and entering a deadly tournament seems like the easiest way to find out.
Dan: I'd take Dr. Mario. If someone is able to beat me at that game, it means they're such an off-the-charts nerd that I could then just beat them up afterwards and not have to lose my life.
Dan:You couldn't be more wrong. It's "Nothing moves the blob."
Jeff: X-men has the distinction of being two monitors wide, but it plays just like every other Final Fight rip-off of the era. What makes it better than Captain America and the Avengers, Spider-Man or even Nick Fury and The Punisher?
Dan: Nightcrawler could jump on people. Although, when you died in the Avengers game, you did say "I CAN'T MOVE!", so maybe that's a close second.
Jeff: After a string of duds, the most recent Hulk game is pretty good. It drops Hulk in an open city, and you can run around and smash anything. Imagine Grand Theft Auto with the ability to surf on buses.
Dan: Well, how is that different from Rampage?
Jeff: It's that open-ended gameplay that lets you just have fun with the characters' unique abilities. It worked well for Spider-Man 2 too, though Spider-Man 3 really dropped the ball. Superman tried the format for the Superman Returns game, but it was a disaster.
Dan: There's always Marvel vs Capcom.
Jeff: I always wondered if Venom could beat up Zangief. Turns out the answer is yes, but only if the guy playing Venom is Asian.
Dan: Everyone can beat up Zangief.
Dan: Except maybe Dhalsim. Now, could Venom beat up Liu Kang? That's another can of worms.
Dan: I'd like to see Twisted Sister's "We're Not Gonna Take It" because it has the best guitar solo of all time. It's literally just the melody again with one bent note. It could be the first song in the game, and they could establish a level before "easy" for infants.
Dan: You would have to play the lead vocals, and there would be lots of whammying.
Jeff: An 80's game is an admirable goal, but maybe they should have just made Moog Hero.
Dan: Moog Hero is one more step towards my dream game, Theremin Hero. Which would still be a bunch of Black Sabbath songs, but on theremin.
Jeff: The game should have a heavy focus on butt-metal, and no song defines that sub-subgenre like "Cum on Feel the Noize." I'd also like the game to include the first three seconds of "White Wedding." Billy Idol's guitar makes a sound I don't think I can successfully onomatopoeia-ize, but it's something like "wahahahahwnikahawahaha."
Dan: Michael Jackson also seems pretty necessary, but the rights are probably a little steep. Maybe the whole game could just be "Thriller" and "Love Me Do," and it costs $500.
Jeff: I love Thriller (the album, not just the song), but the best Michael Jackson guitar riff belongs to Black and White. I know he probably drugged and raped children, but damn that riff is catchy.
Dan: I came away from that video loving just one person who could morph into all races. Maybe I missed the message.
Jeff: According to my iTunes, "Black or White" is actually from 1991. I guess we'll have to wait for Guitar Hero Rocks the 90's. That's also the only way we'll ever be able to play a Hootie song.