Welcome to Pages of Fun!

This is the personal Web site of Robert Wm. Gomez. I am an artist, musician and nerd living in Chicago, Illinois who has been maintaining this site (in one form or another) since 1996. Enjoy your visit!


Haunted House: Remastered

Haunted House: Remastered

Followers of this site (ed. yeah like that's a thing) will remember a few years ago I created a in-browser playable version of the Applesoft BASIC game Haunted House for this site. Over the past month or so I got it in my head to push my skills as a programmer and make a much more fully realized version of the game. Today I am releasing my new version of the game, Haunted House: Remastered! It's a vast improvement on the original in almost every way possible. In other words, it's actually fun to play.

While it's nowhere near the level of sophistication of an Infocom game, I think it does some pretty impressive stuff (for my skill level as a programmer). It's still a two word parser, but the vocabulary is increased. There are full-page help screens, triggered story events, a retro…

Mind Hive
Wire - CD (8/10)

Wire has been on autopilot since their 2015 self-titled release. There's nothing wrong with the records, just none of them rise to the brilliance of Change Becomes UsMind Hive starts off with some pretty good rock songs. There are some strings buried in the mix and other nice touches but the record looses steam by the end. That said, Wire remains one of the few bands left whose albums I will still buy without question (5.6.7.8.s and the various remnants of Cabaret Voltaire also included).

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Wed, 02/05/2020 - 18:03

Cultist

This was the last of the ink drawings I created for the Nox Archaist game manual. At the time of this writing I don't know whether any of these will make it in to the final printing, but we'll see. This is supposed to be a "cultist." I tried to make him look a little like one of the healers from The Bard's Tale. I own a know that looks like that.

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Tue, 02/04/2020 - 19:49

Legendary Junk of China

Tonight I just started to watch The Legendary Weapons of China again by mistake. This is why I keep blogging these movies. I will eventually forget I've seen them before. In any event, I forgot how awesome the first ten minutes of this film is (the rest is not that great). Leave it to the Shaw Brothers to create movies that are written for eight year-olds but filled with all sorts of graphic violence. The best moment is when a fighter is commanded to rip his crotch out. At first he has a very dainty technique:

Crotch grab at the ready!

But it ends with a quick grab and, a backwards flop, and then a fistful of gore flying through the air:

Fosberg flop

Here it is in case you missed it:

Ewww!

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (8/10)

As with all Tarantino movies, this is entertaining from beginning to end with tons of nostalgic details. I don't think it ranks with his best work. For one thing, I miss the snappy dialogue of his 90s masterpieces. But it is a well told story of the end of an era. Not so coincidentally, it's the exact same theme as my favorite movie, Once Upon a Time in the West.

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Wed, 01/29/2020 - 15:06

The Fog (8/10)

Had not seen this one before. John Carpenter certainly knew his stuff. There's barely a movie here but it manages to provide lots of atmosphere. overall, a pretty good horror movie. Plus it has Adrienne Barbeau fighting off ghouls on the roof of a lighthouse.

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Sun, 01/26/2020 - 23:32

Super Inframan (6/10)

If I was 9 years old this would be the greatest movie ever. It's basically the Shaw Bros. version of Spectreman. Man, I loved that show as a kid. As an adult though, the non-stop monster-fu gets a little tedious. What it does have going for it is some truly ambitious set and character design and lots of great, colorful widescreen photography.

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Tue, 01/21/2020 - 19:39

Flashback on PC (7/10)

Flashback, heart attack!

I must have attempted to play this game about a dozen times. I would download it from some abandonware site, fire up DosBox, and then proceed to be frustrated out of my mind by the sluggish controls and unfair level design. Or maybe I was just terrible at that first jungle level.

Well, this is the 25th anniversary remastered edition. It's more or less the original game emulated, but there are a few quality of life improvements. First and foremost is the ability to rewind the game after you die for an immediate do-over. Second, there are on-screen help boxes to guide you through the…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Mon, 01/13/2020 - 23:31

Abzû on PC (5/10)

Wake up! There are whales!

Hey, it's a walking simulator with a twist... swimming! I'll give it this, Abzû is a very nice looking and great sounding game. The score is magnificent. You know the soundtrack has to be good when seemingly half of the game credits are taken up with the names of the various instrumentalists. Unfortunately, like all of these "art" games, there isn't much in terms of a game here. You just swim around, (literally) look at fish, and occasionally click on a hot-spot. I'd be more forgiving if there was a good story to follow but, "evil thing making the ocean all evil and the only way to stop it…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Mon, 01/13/2020 - 10:46

The Silent Age on PC (6/10)

The Silent Age Screenshot

The biggest puzzle in this modestly sized point-and-click adventure is figuring out how to get it to even run. I bought it for 99¢ in a Steam sale a year or two ago and when I finally got around to playing it, I discovered that it would crash immediately after launching. Well, let me spoil this first puzzle for you: the game won't run if you have Citrix Receiver installed on your computer (same for any game based on the Unity Engine). There is a fix that involves reinstalling Citrix with some command line flags. Goggle it.

Anyhow, once the game is up and running you will see its flat…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Fri, 01/10/2020 - 22:08