Old Grandma Hardcore

This blog is the chronicle of my experiences with Grandma, the video-game playing queen of her age-bracket and weight class. She will beat any PS2, XBox, GameCube, etc., console game put in front of her, just like she always has. These are her stories. She is absolutely real. She lives in Cleveland.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

What We're Up To...

Yo. As a lot of you folks know, I'm a photographer for our local paper out yonder in crazyland. It's a great job! Like any job, it's teaching me a lot, but I will say it's kicking my ass when it comes to scheduling the blog and getting things done for you.

So Grandma and I discussed things and OGHC is moving to a weekly schedule rather than daily. It takes a lot of pressure off us both and keeps the blog going strong, just as we like it: without advertisement.

This requires a bit more explanation.

We recently had the opportunity to expand the blog to a site that offered us unlimited space for videos and podcasts. The only stipulation was that ads would be placed on the site, the revenue from which would be split between us and the partners. Grandma became weary of the offer, however, for several reasons.

First, they sent us ideas for content. "Could we get Grandma to do..." and the like. Grandma is very much not a circus monkey. We haven't discussed content format and development with anybody. Not even MTV. The blog is Grandma's piece of freedom on the web, in which she can say and do whatever she pleases. Compromising that is a switch we're just not prepared to make.

Second, the ads. We've never had ads. We can support ourselves pretty well, and Blogspot provides a great, free way of publishing just about whatever. Ads are pretty annoying if not done well, and if they are tasteful and nonintrusive- they create an issue with property. If a company invests in Grandma and me, and they split ad revenue, and if they are wise, you can be damn sure they will protect their investment. If we say something that hurts ad sales or we're not funny or interesting enough, they will be required to do something to change that. This brings us back to the first point.

Third, we've anticipated a schedule shift ever since I took on another job, not to mention the fact that I'm trying to get back into school, if the opportunity presents itself. Maintaining a web "business" based on my Grandma really isn't fair to her. We do this shit for fun, man. Not money. The second she stops playing games because she likes to game and begins playing something only so we have something to write is the moment it stops being fun for Grandma.

We have a lot to tell you guys. The comments by Collin and Dana in the Guitar Hero post have pretty much been the talk of our house in the past week. Karaoke Revolution, Taiko Drum Master, Guitar Hero and Dance Dance simultaneously?! Are you KIDDING?! FUCK YEAH! ...Wait, did you say Taiko Drum Master? ...Is that the game from Lost in Translation with the dancing noodle things in the arcade? Well after your endorsement, Grandma went on a quest to FIND it. She also downloaded the full version of Crystal Quest on XBox Live Arcade, and we finally have a million-plus score in Geometry Wars that is driving her grandson insane. She bought World Championship Poker 2, and she thinks it very well may be the worst game she's ever played ever (in the past year.) Brain Age is coming up for Nintendo DS (wooo!!!) and they sent us a couple copies of Electroplankton, which is curiously addicting.

The bottom line is we're going to have a weekly post, which will be huge. We will have podcasts (we need your input on subjects for our first) and we will have new videos. We love you guys, we're going to do this right.

Game on.


  • At 12:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I just wanted to say hi from Chile.
    Grandma was on "El Mercurio" a few weeks ago. El Mercurio it´s the most important newspaper here.
    So, mad props to grandma.
    Crossing borders!
    GAME ON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • At 2:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey Tim, I appreciate this blog so much! I respect going to weekly vs. daily format. With that said, can we bring back Ask Grandma Hardcore, maybe back to Monday nights?

    I'm not saying have 2 weekly posts, just maybe post stuff whenever you feel like, but have a regularly scheduled Ask Grandma feature. If life intervenes, we understand. If you have to reschedule because MTV wants to worship Grandma some more, just do a quick, "Ask Grandma will be postponed due to general awesomeness" entry, hopefully with the new date.

    Don't want to demand Ask Grandma come back, or worse, demand that she try to have live chats or other such nonsense.

    But we love your grandma, Tim. Let us appreciate her muchly with a weekly love-in.


    or not.

  • At 2:25 PM, Blogger JenThePrincess said…

    Seriously, WCP 2 the worst game? Oh No! I am so glad I didn't buy it yet! I miss you guys! Glad to hear everything is going so good for you though! It doesn't matter if you go to weekly or monthly, I will always check daily to see if anything new has happened!

    Game On!


  • At 2:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Heya Tim,

    I understand entirely, and I think you guys are doing the absolute right thing. I myself see the long boom of crunch time looming overhead for me, and have done my best to prepare accordingly - but it's a tough thing to try and do, especially when one's schedule give you no breather. You do what you gotta - rest assured, we'll still be here, eagerly awaiting news as ever. ::grin::

    Take care, be well, and as always, GAME ON!


    (Oh, and I wanted it to be a surprise, but I'm too impatient - you and Grandma will have a package coming your way sometime in the next few weeks, sometime after the 9th - keep an eye out for it! ::wink::)

  • At 3:50 PM, Blogger Unknown said…

    oooh, it must feel like a scary thing to have to do, but i'm sure you guys will have all the support you need from your many followers.

    good luck and happy gaming. :)

  • At 5:47 PM, Blogger hugz n drugz said…

    yo Tim,
    i have a question:
    i've always wanted to be a photographer...but ont wanna go to college.
    I refuse to be a sheep, fuck the system. I mean, this world its so fucked up that nobody cares about your skills when applying for a job, they all just want you to show them a diploma...wich is the most stupid thing ever, cuz you learn your skills by putting them to work, no fucking piece of paper will ever make you good in what you do. Practice makes perfect, rite?
    Anyways, back to topic, i was wondering if you could recommend me a camera or any piece of equipement to get started?
    I love photography, but sadly i havent had the chance to get liek, a real fancy camera or computer or whatever you need to get the job done.
    So yea, what would you recommend me to start?

  • At 6:42 PM, Blogger Patrick said…

    Tim you keep a crucial blog, I'm very impressed now that I've given a good look at it. I appreciate your comment on my Gonzo Gaming article. I'm definetly giving OGHC a link.

    Hey, I'm trying to get some noted game studies students, writers and journalists together to do a blog consisting solely of critical essays on particular games or related aspects. I think you could bring a really interesting post-modern approach to some of these game you play, and contribute some good content. Drop me a mail if you're interested: 666to777@gmail.com

  • At 7:15 PM, Blogger Collin said…

    Awesome! I look forward to the weekly updates. I also agree, keep the site the way that you enjoy it and it'll be easier to keep at it. Don't compromise.

    I'm also glad that you liked the suggestion of a combo music game. I didn't include DDR partly because that would probably take too much of the screen space, and partly because it might be distracting to the other players.

    I hope you guys find Taiko Drum Master and get a kick out of it. I only have a couple of complaints about it. One, there aren't nearly enough songs, and two, my daughter discovered that if you hit it hard enough on either the sides or in the middle it'll register as a double stick hit so it's possible to cheat if you have the energy.

    Game on Tim and Grandma.

  • At 7:51 PM, Blogger liam said…

    Well done on saying no to those money deals and ad revenue. You're completely right in thinking that you'll be beholden to them once you start splitting ad revenue. The best thing about this blog is Grandma's honesty and freedom from repercussion if she doesn't like a game.

    The once a week format sounds very reasonable - you're doing this for the fun of it.

    Looking forward to more gaming advice from Grandma!

  • At 10:34 AM, Blogger paine said…

    hey hugs n drugs
    its possible to become a photographer without school i know of two ppl who did one of them is a really good friend of mine and another is a photographer by the name of Pam farr she is self taught, if you want to stay at home or continue to work and still get a diploma in it nyip (new york institute of photography) has a really good at home schooling you even send in your work and they grade it, my fiancee is going to start taking classes through them hope that was helpful to you
    and tim i like the weekly update thing it puts way less stress on you guys

  • At 11:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Show the shills the door. Bravo to you Timothy for respecting your grandma and telling those dopes where to go. I love how, on the one hand, they approach things by arguing that the "market" determines content. And yet, they're continually sniffing around for stuff that people like and trying to "buy in" to that. But they come right back to say that *they* - the uncreative money people - know what *we*, the audience, wants. And then those ad people/marketers, who have never created anything but the poop out of their fancy bums, have the audacity to then go to the *creators* (you and grandma) to think you'll make their jive advertainment. I say, send them a pack of toilet paper and some instructions because they're not going to use your site for a toilet.

  • At 1:41 PM, Blogger ivorynetsuke said…

    Bravo for staying true to your ideals.

    On Taiko Drum Master, I would have preferred that they stick a few "traditional" Japanese drumming pieces, but it doesn't make it any less fun. Great way to take your frustrations out, too =) And if I recall correctly, Red Octane's Web site also sells the taiko drum controller (along with the extra guitar controllers for GH). You might have better luck trying to find a used copy of Taiko Drum Master and then buying the controller separately (although, unlike GH, you can play this with a regular PS2 controller if you really want). I managed to get the original box set on eBay for about $40.

    Electroplankton looked really ... interesting! It's definitely something that I want to try out.

    Have fun and game on!


  • At 4:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    That's the problem with success! You don't have endless hours to ingest stimulants and compose witty phrases to keep us masses entertained.

    Face it, you two have already gone a long ways towards accomplishing what you set out to do with this blog - bust the lie that games are only played by sexually frustrated teenage boys.

    Weekly posts are great and I hope to see the blog continue to morph until it has completely outlived it's usefullness.

    Thanks for holding to your principles.

    Mama Lombax

  • At 6:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Right on Grandma...! you stick to your guns and don't do anything that has the potential to compromise your integrity... you could sign up with Google Adsense and not have to split profits with anyone, but no matter how you slice it, those ads look butt ugly... (hehe, I know from experience...)

    I'm sad to see you cutting back to once a week, that's because I'm SELFISH and just love to get my Grandma fix... :)

    Once a week is better than nothing, and I hope you consider the suggestion of a previous poster and have a periodic "Ask Grandma" post... to make it easy on you it wouldn't have to be on any kind of schedule, just an extra post for whenever you got some free time and the whim...

    Rock on Grandma, and GAME ON!


  • At 7:24 PM, Blogger Brinstar said…

    Taiko Drum Master is so much fun. I think she will enjoy.

  • At 1:59 AM, Blogger 666 said…

    Well, I feel it's a better idea. I won't mind waiting for weekend and go through load of stuff about what grandma is upto rather than reading eenie-meenie tiny-whiny infrequent updates.
    Other thing is you guys are doing absolutely great on blogspot, putting this stuff on full-fledged with some annoying ads or popup would definitely put a dent. well, its just my opinion :)

  • At 10:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hugz -

    I think you should consider going to college, if only to have a good backup plan in place. I don't think it's true at ALL that in every field "it's not what you know, it's WHO" - that didn't get me any of my jobs. And I have several friends who are phenomenal photographers, and college actually helped them hone their skills: they got contacts, talked shop with people with similar interests, learned new techniques from professors, etc. None of them majored in it, but they're all amazing at what they do and pull a steady side income (at the very least) from photography.

    Don't think of "going to college = being a sheep" - I think that's bollocks. College shouldn't be looked on as a chore. I met my husband and some of my best friends in college, I GREW UP there and realized holy shit, this world is harder to get along in than I'd thought but HEY, now I know how to get through it much better. I learned some unbelivably cool stuff from some amazing professors. But yeah - my point is, don't turn away from something just because you feel it's what people expect you to do. Don't go for "their" reasons - go for yours, and go in with a plan of what you want to get out of it. Think of it as laying down a solid foundation for a Plan B, and honing your Plan A skills while you're at it. ::wink::

    Anyhow. /college rant. Best of luck to you!


  • At 6:14 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…


    Greetings from Slovenia :)

    I just wanted to say: BRAVO GRANDMA! Keep up the good gaming ;)

    It's a good thing you do something in your free time, even do you sometimes get addicted to video games. And like you said... that you don't wait in your chair for death to come.

    You're an exceptional senior! :thumbsup:

  • At 12:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    hey granny grammer u are awesome and im glad u have fun i wish i u a happy 70th b-day

  • At 10:40 PM, Blogger mw said…

    Grandma's so awsome that a weekly exposure will support my habit. Besides, the less she answers mail = more time for games. :)

    Love Ya Grams,

  • At 8:16 AM, Blogger CtrlAltDelete said…


    Hello!! Awesome!! We love Chile, it looks like such a beautiful country. Thanks for saying Hi!


    We've gotten a lot of e-mail about that as well. Ask Grandma Hardcore is hereby resurrected!


    YES. You ARE lucky! HOLY GOD.


    You're a crazy person, you know that? CRAZY! ;) We'll keep a lookout, but you better believe there shall be much finger wagging at you. I'm glad you found somewhere you like, fucking STAY THERE!! Such places are not easy to find!


    It IS scary, only because I don't want to screw up the format. Then again, I've been doing that by not being able to post as often anyways. Thanks for stickin with us!

    hugz n drugz-

    There is some good advice in this thread; I would recommend getting yourself a cheap digital SLR camera with a couple lenses to start you off. You can do A LOT with an SLR. It will take a lot of days just going out and shooting for hours and learning from your changes. Best thing about digital: don't have to print or pay for film or development; all the lessons learned translate perfectly into film based applications should they come later. Win-freaking-win! The Nikon D50 is pretty cheap online (not too bad in the stores either.) Shoot me an e-mail and we can discuss what you'd like to do.


    Thanks man! I'm honored! I'll e-mail you later today after work (just updated for the week.)


    Jesus GOD, man; you should see my family at this thing. I'm surprised it's not broken. I agree with you about the songs, and the kids tell me you are correct about the middle-hit glitch; so I have to see if I have the energy to take on Hard Mode.... ...Christ ;)


    We've GOT to keep it that way, man. Anything else is just... another regurgitated propaganda piece for a games company. And who the hell reads THAT shit?


    I've heard good things about nyip, and I know a couple of folks who went through the program as well. The trick is to build up your portfolio to a point that identifies you as one capable of multiple, controlled techniques. It's all math in the end, but its easy stuff ;)


    I will forever envision you with a fist in the air screaming "fight the power!" And I'll be right there next to ya screamin too. Rock on.


    I noticed that too. For a game about Taiko Drumming it doesn't have too many Taiko songs! Ever see a Taiko group perform live? AWESOME ;)

    mama lombax-

    At the moment, it seems that caffeine=strength ;) It's not all integrity and writing preservation, although that's part of it. Bottom line: I want to keep this fun for Grandma, no matter what.


    I wish I could post more often, I really do! I just can't keep up with everybody is all ;) Thanks for sticking with us!!!


    YOU LIE!! ...oh... shit, no; no you don't lie. Nevermind ;)


    Did I ever tell you that Grandma laughs everytime she sees your login name? ;) Thanks, man. Rock on.


    I got a few great jobs and I'm STILL trying to go back to college to finish. What you say is true. I just have to prepare the funds. It all comes down to the money.


    Greetings from Cleveland, Ohio! :) Thanks for coming by, man. She says thanks for the birthday wishes!


    Thanks, dude! Grandma hath been told!


    Yeah, but we still gots to answer mail! Otherwise it's just not the same (although it's taking us a lot longer nowadays.) I'm glad I'm supporting your habit! ;)

  • At 8:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    yes, your 1 million + score in geo wars is driving me crazy but i promise you one day I WILL pass you lol

    ,your favorite grandson


  • At 6:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    alright first and foremost god of war is handsdown the best game ever created ever dreamt although i havent got my hands on the much anticipated sequel. that being said im not quite sure anyone correction very many people really actually understand the gameplay or the game. i mean i come onto these bs sites looking for one tip just one and find that no one really knows the answers or the game. i beat spartan mode first tinme in 9 hrs. now im at the kratos clones on god mode in 7 and 1 half and i tried a few times and it seems impossible. it took me me one day to beat or rather adjust to ares part one and finally i beat it. but i had no rage of the gods army of hades was at level two but full health and full magic. i see people saying shit like its impossible to beat him without at least full rage of the gods and level 3 aoh. well thats obliviously major wussy bs. and as for the advice ill beat the clones and heres some advice from me to whoever posts bs for people like me who actually know how to play the greatest game of all time but just happens to link onto one these sites for one little piece of advice but finds that only 1 in 10 people actually understand it: go back to practice mode. spread the word homies.

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