Marvels Iron Fist

Iron Fist, the newest entry in the fantastic Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), was universally panned by critics, with a Metacritic score of 37 and not a single positive critic review.

The show was fairly slow and at points predictable, but the same could be said for Luke Cage. One review I read complains that the protagonist, Danny Rand, says things like "If you wish to see the truth, then hold no opinions". It's almost as if he spent the last 15 years in a Buddhist monastery.

There are also a lot of complaints about a white character having culturally appropriated abilities, as though somehow martial arts can't be taught to white people. One review complains that he, as a white man, lectures an Asian woman on how to channel her internal force. But it's okay that a Hispanic character taught her in the first place. I understand that it's frustrating that there aren't any Asian heroes in the MCU, but panning a show for not having an Asian main character seems strange to me.

They also complain that Danny Rand is a boring character, using the name "Danny Bland". To a degree I can understand, but I also don't see how he's any less interesting than, say, Matt Murdock.

Now that I've complained about other reviews, I'll share some of my own thoughts for the show. As I've already mentioned, the show is somewhat slow and predictable, but a slow pace isn't strictly a bad thing. It meanders somewhat with arcs that don't really go anywhere. Again, this isn't necessarily a bad thing. The story is in the journey and sometimes journeys have pointless detours. The slower pacing actually felt better to me than the last 3 seasons of Netflix shows which I felt all had an extreme lull in the third quarter.

The fights are generally well choreographed, the exception being one in a moving truck that was a little stupid.

Superficially there are a lot of similarities between Iron Fist and the first season of Arrow. A rich son of a business owner 'died' on holiday many years ago and returns, taking over the business. The composition of friends he returns to is the same; one female and one male with a father who has come back from the dead.

A very minor complaint; Both Daredevil and Jessica Jones had entire scenes where subtitles were required, yet when we go to China in Iron Fist for pretty much a single scene everybody, including a street beggar, speaks English ("I wasn't always a beggar" - Oh, that explains it). It felt a bit strange.

I do have another complaint about the show, but it's about the very final scene so I won't mention it. It's very, very similar to the very final scene in Doctor Strange (which I also took issue with).

In all, I enjoyed the show. It's far from the failure the critics seem to suggest. And while it will feel all too familiar if you've seen Arrow, it's still definitely worth watching. The critical reviews are pretty much just wrong.

Mario Sports Superstars

I havent tried writing a game review before, so forgive this for being terrible! I don't want to give review scores, and in general would prefer to focus on the positives of a game. This game will be an exception to how I'd like to write these in the future.

It's hard to review this title without focusing on its negatives and comparing the games to other games, so before I get too far into the negatives of it, let me preface this by saying that I like this game.

It's split into 5 sports (soccer, tennis, golf, baseball and horseracing) with an additional amiibo game and a horse care game built into it.

Generally speaking all of the games are fairly mediocre, cut down versions of more fleshed out games. I expected this going in, so didn't mind. Given that you're getting five games in the one package at a fairly low price (I paid AU$49), it's not too bad at all. I feel that the games themselves are fairly lacking in content, there are only four golf courses, for example.

All of the games (save horse racing) are a series of three knockout tournament cups and a freeplay mode.

The first sport I tried was tennis. It controls well and I like it. You hit the ball back with a standard strike or, if there is a coloured circle on the ground, run to the circle and press the corresponding button for that shot type. Or press your cheat button, X, which automatically acts like it's the right button. Why would you press anything other than X, then? I'm not sure. Perhaps it's disabled in multiplayer. Mario Tennis Open is also on the 3DS, and is probably a better game, but if you're just after a simple tennis fix then this is pretty solid.

Next up was soccer. I had a little bit of difficulty with the controls in this game, but still found it not too bad. The soccer game is actually very balanced and fairly hard to fault. Occasionally the ball will have a rainbow flashing effect, meaning that anyone can do a special shot with it. This mainly serves to intensify the game a couple of times if the other team has possession of the ball. While playing it, I found myself wishing I were playing Mario Strikers Charged Football instead, but this is a lot easier than finding all of my Wii stuff. This is a much simpler game, which isn't necessarily a bad thing.

Each golf game is played as 1v1 competition. The controls are fairly standard for a golf game. There's not really much else that needs to be said about this. It does the job of a golf game well, but if you're after a more 'complete' golf experience with more courses, etc, Mario Golf: World Tour is also on 3DS. I prefer Mario Gold for course variation and more game modes (including a standard golf game mode...).

I didn't particularly enjoy the baseball game. When batting, you have a red box with yellow sides. You can move the box horizontally with the analogue stick. If the ball is in the red area, you press A. If it's in the yellow, you press B. I found it really difficult to work out where the ball would be to actually hit it. Pitching was okay, though there wasn't really a lot to it. You select a type of throw and press A when the indicator is in the right spot. That's pretty much all there is to it. Field-work is handled automatically, which is nice. In the game, you have a couple of special moves that you can use. These feel completely pointless while pitching as it's just a normal throw. They're nice when batting, as you don't need to worry about hitting the ball with the right button or in the right spot.

Horse racing is fairly enjoyable. For starters, it's the only game that isn't a knockout tournament. Each of the three cups is a series of four races and scored similar to Mario Kart. Racing itself is fairly slow. There is a carrot bar, which allows you to push your horse a small amount and a star bar, which gives you a turbo boost. There is also a slipstream effect making it better to stay in a pack rather than racing off ahead. So racing is a little bit technical, but easily managable given the slow racing speed. There is also an area to bond with your horse, involving petting, brushing and a free walk around a paddock.

The game also introduces a new series of Amiibo cards. There is another game which uses amiibo cards. The game comes with one in the box, but it seems like the amiibo game requires three amiibo cards. So why not give three of them? I haven't had a chance to play the amiibo game just yet, so I can't really talk about it. I bought 6 packs of amiibo cards and only got a single duplicate card, which is pretty lucky. I don't know if the game is going to hold my attention long enough for me to want to get the whole collection of cards.

Cloudbleed in simple terms

Are you affected? Yes, probably.

Should you be worried? Probably not. Chances are low that it's actively been exploited. There is some residual data around, but chances are good that you'll be fine.

Should you change your passwords? Yes, probably. But you should rotate your passwords regularly anyway.

Am I downplaying the threat? Absolutely - Cloudbleed is REALLY, REALLY BAD. But it probably won't affect you. It's potentially worse than heartbleed and heartbleed was already really bad.

What is Cloudflare? Cloudflare is a service that sits between a website and you, making it so that you get data from a location closer to you than the website actually is. My websites are in Oregon, Cloudflare means that, from Australia, you only have to get to Sydney to get my site.

What happened? They had a memory leak. I could send a certain command and get a page full of garbage. Sometimes, very rarely (specifically 0.00003%), that garbage will have something interesting in it. However I can send that command as many times as I like.

What is a memory leak? Say I tell you to read 13 words of page 197 of the Lord of the Rings, but you misheard me and read 13 billion words. That's more words than the book contains, so you're just reading everything you can find.

Spoiler-free Agents of SHIELD season 4 to date.

Season 4 has split it's 22 episodes into 3 story arcs, with one key link. The season also ties in loosely with the release of Doctor Strange, adding mysticism to the MCU.

The first arc, featuring the Ghost Rider, was widely praised for bringing the show back on track after a fairly bleak end to season 3. Personally, I felt that these episodes relied too much on the Ghost Rider and his family and I didn't feel any particular attachment to them. Robbie Reyes (Ghost Rider) didn't feel like a good fit for the team, so it was obvious that he wouldn't be sticking around for the long haul.

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