Tony Hawk Shred and a Passive Aggressive Post

10.19.10

You might have seen some video from me this weekend featuring Jane’s Addiction or Tony Hawk. Then you might have been scratching your head wondering why Jessica is at a backyard party where Tony Hawk (and friends) are skating on a half pipe, while Jane’s Addiction performs. It did not happen because Tony Hawk sent me a handwritten invitation. I was not there because Perry Farrell knocked on my front door and said, “Please, I can’t possibly perform without your presence.” I was invited as a guest of Activision.

Tony Hawk is pretty passionate about making skate parks available to kids everywhere. He talked about using his influence to help build skate parks in neighborhoods where kids don’t have a place to play. It’s easy to want to contribute to his foundation, and I was thrilled to be at an event that built a skate park for kids in Long Beach. He talked about how the skate parks all closed down in the 80’s because of insurance costs, and that he was so bummed because he didn’t have a place to play. Which makes sense, because I remember kids skating in empty swimming pools, and in sewer pipes that were waiting to be installed. Kids skated everywhere.

But then kids started grinding on stairwells, and signs started popping up. NO SKATING. And suddenly skating was a crime.

Tony Hawk and Activision have a new game coming out in a few days. It’s called Tony Hawk Shred (TH Shred), and like TH Ride you can skate through all the places where no one wants you. I’m pretty sure that Shred is the only way I’ll be able to ride a skateboard around New Orleans, and I’m absolutely certain that it’s the only snowboarding I’ll ever do (I tried, snowboarding made me cry).

At this fabulous party I was lucky enough to try Shred. Basically it’s like Tony Hawk’s Ride but everything is bigger and better. The kids love it, and so do I. The only thing is that it does make noise. There’s a thump thump thumping that is only allowed after 9am in this house. On the good side, they work up a good sweat playing.

I didn’t get any pictures of myself or Jane trying out Shred, they were all super blurry, but I was able to snap a few of my friend Lolita’s boys. They had a blast.

Tony Hawk Shred Demo

Now, for the passive aggressive part of the post. I asked the folks at Activision if they would want to do a giveaway for the game. And they said, “no”… which I think we all know means “maybe”. Right? I’m pretty committed to pestering them endlessly until they agree that giving one of y’all a copy of this game would be the smartest PR move ever. Clearly when people want to know about good PR they ask me. Right?

Right.

The game goes on sale October 26, and it’s an awful lot of fun.

Tony Hawk Ride Giveaway: The Blackmail Saga

11.19.09

I noticed that a lot of you were looking for reviews of the Tony Hawk Ride. I loved it, my kids loved it and I predict that it will be impossible to find right before X-Mas.

Right now I’m giving away a X-Mas Tree. What good is a Christmas Tree without a gift to put under it?

Tony Hawk has a fantastic Gaming peripheral that’s just come on the market. The Tony Hawk Ride behaves like a skateboard would attached to your gaming system.

Activision kindly let me and the kids have a preview of  The Ride, and we loved it. In fact, I loved it so much I asked them if I could have one for a friend.

Activision said, “No.”

I said, “but wait, I have blackmail pictures.”

“Oh really?” They said, “Of what?”

“Of Tony Hawk being mean to kids”

“Tony Hawk is a really nice guy, you said so yourself.” Activision sounded worried.

“Okay then, explain this!” And I showed them this picture (more…)

Activision Update

08.26.09

I’ve spoken to three people at Activision. Each phone call has been kinder than the one before. These are nice people making good products.

Well, except one.

Y’all are going to say that I’m biting the hand that feeds me. I’m sure that’s true to a degree. I loved giving out their products at BlogHer, my kids love their games.

I can’t reconcile myself with the multiplayer gaming aspect. I understand that someone needs to be the bad guy, but there are no Cowboys and Indians. There are no Klan mob scenes (not even in fantasy gaming), there are no Vietnam or Korea games that I know of.

And if these games do exist?

Don’t tell me.

I understand enough of the game now to know that the guys at Activision aren’t evil. They’re just too smart to not be good.

I will respectfully end the discussion by reminding them that they’re some of the smartest people in the world, and they could should be great.

Activision Corners the White Pride Market

08.23.09

I’m a Mommy Blogger. I’m a Jewish woman with a Jewish last name who spends her days talking about parenting, marriage and womanhood. Occasionally I talk about the products my family uses in and around the home. Occasionally I’ll mention a video game on Whrrl, Facebook or Twitter. I still talk about Monsters vs Aliens and what a wonderful time my son and I had at the movie. I gave away a few copies of the games.

It makes sense for Activision, EA and the like to send me video games either for review or giveaway. Right? Well, today I opened a startling package. 

Today Activision sent me a video game where up to twelve players can role play together. Exciting right? Here’s the rub.

One team is made up of Nazis.

No, it’s not a typo or even a joke. One team is fighting the Nazi regime, and another team is pretending to be them.

I was going to open up the game and give it a whirl, but I couldn’t, becuase the bile rose in my throat. I wanted to give Activision the benefit of the doubt, but I couldn’t. I realized that as a company there was a level of moral turpitude that I couldn’t possibly engage. They don’t deserve my time.

How long does it take to develop a video game?
How many people are involved with the development of a video game?
At what moment in time does an otherwise bright group of people decide that the White Pride community is ripe for the picking?
When did Activision decide that White Supremacists were a group they wanted to court? 

Perhaps the folks at Activision forgot about the recent execution at the Holocaust Museum

Perhaps the folks at Activision forgot that some folks didn’t arrive on Plymouth Rock. 

Some of us have family who can’t celebrate the Fourth of July because it triggers flashbacks to bombings. Some of us have Seders where we teach our children the story of the exodus and then explain the numbers on their Auntie’s arm. Some of us buried their Grandparents along with their secrets, and we kindly pretended to not know. 

I’m startled that anyone could glimpse my blog, snapshot my words and think that sending me a copy of a video game like Wolfenstien where. I won’t even give you a screenshot. I can’t look at a Swastika without becoming enraged, and I certainly cannot comprehend what the production meetings must have been like. 

I understand in theory the need to have battles of good versus evil. I’m not against adult themed video games. I don’t hate guns or armies or even carnage. I’m just wondering why Activision would send me a copy of this video game? 

If Activision sent me the game as a gentle reminder that the world is still deeply Anti Semetic then it’s a wonderful success.
If Activision sent me the game as a not so gentle reminder that children should not be left unattended with media and gaming, then that was a success.
If Activision sent me Wolfenstein so that I could recommend to you, my trusted community, that you purchase it. Well, that is a horrendous failure.

I cannot remember the last time I was this deeply wounded.

Activision sent the child of a Holocaust Survivor swastikas in the mail.

I shall not soon forget.

 

*This post is not edited, proofread or otherwise spiffed up for you. It was written between tears and gasps. I cannot see straight and I wanted to get the words out quickly so that I can move forward.