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Jamie Fristrom
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Once a developer on Spider-Man 2, now bringing similar grappling-and-swinging game mechanics to Energy Hook.
Once a developer on Spider-Man 2, now bringing similar grappling-and-swinging game mechanics to Energy Hook.

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So, given the recent events, I thought I'd get down the thoughts about guns I've been thinking lately. I don't really want to write them down. I trigger myself just thinking about guns, so if I could just push down these thoughts and never let them surface again I would.
When I found out my girlfriend owned a gun, that I'd been sleeping two feet from a loaded handgun without even realizing it, my PTSD morphed into something new and very hard to deal with. I'm back in therapy and I'm doing neurofeedback and I'm a lot better now, but for a while there guns in the media could leave me a sobbing wreck - particularly when I didn't see it coming. (The nadir was an episode of Glee that turned out to be about school shooting. I was watching Glee to get away from guns, god damn it.)
I'm still far from 100%. Whatever that means. I avoid media with guns; I can't be in a house where I know there's a gun in it without having a panic attack; even with my girlfriend's house, once she got rid of the gun (she loves me a lot), it took me months of exposure therapy to be able to stay there and I'm still not 100% comfortable with the place, as if the ghost of the gun still lingered. In my efforts to get away from them I've suddenly come to realize it is damn hard to go even a single day in the US without seeing an image of a gun or hearing about guns. Really, at this point for me, I just accept that I'm going to hear about them a few times a day. Some days are more triggering than others and I'm left raw, or shaky, or weepy, or my ears ring. But I kind of don't want to get "better" about this - I don't think I'm the crazy one here. The US is crazy.
But no judgment: up until this year I used to love shows and movies and videogames with guns. The thing was, despite the number of memorial services I'd been to that were due to guns (three), they were still fantasy for me up until this year. The only people who owned guns, I thought, were suicidal, homicidal, or gun nuts from middle America. (My apologies about the term 'gun nut' - I see now my thoughts were pretty prejudiced.)
You see, after I found out she owned a gun I started doing research.This is part of the reason my PTSD relapsed; discovering that a third of the households in the US have a gun, and who knows how many people have conceal carry permits, makes me constantly vigilant.
I did the research because I hoped if I could statistically prove she was more likely to hurt herself or others than protect herself from a hypothetical home invader she'd get rid of it and I'd be able to breathe easier.
Unfortunately looking at the statistics did not really bear this out. Accidental gun shootings, according to the sources I looked at, are super rare. You're about as likely to get killed in a terrorist attack than accidentally with a gun.
On the other hand, the number of cases of justifiable homicide in the US are equally rare. So that fantasy scenario where you drop a home invader just isn't going to happen.
So looking at it that way I'd have to say, why not own a handgun. It won't help, but it won't hurt. If it helps you sleep at night because of your irrational fears, whatever. I have my own irrational fears. (Of guns.)
On the other hand, if you or a family member are depressed or have anger issues that's another story. Intentionally killing yourself or others happens all the time. We have a mass shooting in the US every day; it's just not all in one place. We have a mass suicide in the US every day. Your thoughts and prayers shouldn't just be with the families of the victims in Las Vegas; your thoughts and prayers should be with victims all over the US and the world.
So, seriously - if you're ever depressed or angry I highly recommend you get rid of the thing. If you're not sure about one of your family members or house mates get rid of the thing.
All that said, I'm not particularly for gun control. Which is the opposite of what you'd expect - I was for gun control until my PTSD got worse and I did the research. Sure, I would welcome gun control but don't think it will solve much. Another statistic I turned up in my research is that in countries that adopted gun control, while at first there was a dip in homicides things got back to normal very soon. I do believe gun control would cut down on suicides - guns are the most effective way to kill one's self. I'd like it if there were more stories about people who tried and failed and went on to do wonderful things with their life -- like one friend of mine -- than people who tried and succeeded - unfortunately, like another.
Still, all said and done, I don't want to curtail anyone's right to have a handgun or even an assault rifle.
What I've got to wonder though, is why people feel the need to own handguns or assault rifles? Hunting rifles I get, but handguns or assault rifles?
Are they just unaware of the statistics? And if they knew that at best their handgun wouldn't help and at worst it could seriously fuck up some lives they'd get rid of the thing?
Are they collectors? Why collect these things made for killing people rather than stamps or baseball cards?
Are they sportsmen? They like to go to the shooting range and see how well they can hit a target? Then why not hunt, or use a bow and arrow, or I don't know, but I'm sure there are plenty of games and sports where aim is a factor that they could enjoy without simulating murder.
I hope the reason is not that they fantasize, consciously or subconsciously, about killing.
Bottom line: I don't want to take away anyone's right to choose. But I would exhort them to make the best choice, and not own a handgun or assault rifle. Be the change I want to see.
Also, if I come visit your house and you own a gun, don't tell me, I don't want to know.
I really just put this up here to vent, to spew, to get some of the poison out. I don't want to have a debate. I'll turn the comments off on this post and if I can't figure out how to do that I simply won't read them. I'm not going to tweet that I wrote this because I don't want to read replies to the tweet. Just debating this will literally make me feel ill. I feel a bit ill right now as I write it, but I hope once it's out I'll feel better.
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Mild Spider-Man spoiler:

They clearly were playing Masks when they wrote the Spider-Man screenplay. "When someone with Influence over you tells you who you are or how the world works, accept what they say or reject their influence."

+Brendan Conway
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Youtube music is great but its shuffle is rubbish. Only randomizes a certain cached number at a time, is technically a 'random' rather than a 'shuffle' (can play the same video more than once before it has played all of them) - this seems like it does what I want, now I just want to broadcast to my TV.
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My magnum opus has launched.

Energy Hook, a game about swinging from rooftop to rooftop, parkour, and aerial stunts is finally out! It pays homage to my days working on Spider-Man 2 and has been years in development.

It's on the PS4 ( https://store.playstation.com/#!/en-us/games/energy-hook/cid=UP0315-CUSA04817_00-ENERGYHOOK00SCEA?emcid=ps-ga-871&utm_medium=Paid_Search&utm_campaign=Games&utm_source=Google&utm_term=ps-ga-871&utm_content=Brand )

And on Steam: (http://store.steampowered.com/app/378070/ ) (18% off launch sale, of course!)

Please reshare!
Energy Hook
Energy Hook
store.steampowered.com
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Auto-back. Had the best roleplaying session--possibly ever--playing Meridian.
The Meridian kickstarter is now live! If you enjoy imaginative gaming and stories about fantastical journeys (Labyrinth, Alice in Wonderland, etc.), this is for you.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1344826513/meridian-a-story-game-of-journeys-wondrous-and-fan
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After four years, my magnum opus is complete!
Launching on Playstation 4 and Steam on July 5th.
Going to take a nap now.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OVNSeWJQi20
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New thing! An RPG inspired by the episodic anime I've been watching with my kids lately.
http://www.happionlabs.com/anime-thing-rpg/

New Version

After getting some playtest reports I've made some possibly significant changes. The new version is up at superhumanrpg.com

Status report!
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