Updates!

Hey, it's been a while! I've been working on plenty of things in the meantime, and now I'm rebuilding this site as a hub for all of 'em! Stay tuned!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

EXPLOSIVO! (Quack Expiremental Radio Program) on 8bitx.com!

My radio days are officially back! Check out the Facebook page, and tune in to 8bitx.com at 8 PM Eastern on 4/11/14! Details and show announcements at https://www.facebook.com/JTIceFireShow

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Moving on!

There's a couple reasons for this, which I'll explain in detail later. But at some point in the near future, this page is going to become a straight redirect to http://8bitx.com. I was going to do this right away, but this page is still getting a surprising amount of pageviews considering how little I've updated as of late.

One of the reasons for this is that I'm moving away from audio-only content and more towards video livestreaming. If you want to keep up, follow me at twitch.tv/jt_icefire!

Also, yeah, that's the new/old handle I'm going with. It was my first real internet handle, and I've gone back to it a few times. There's a few reasons for this, but it's chiefly because I'm focusing more on the present and future of video games, while Nintendo seems to be rooting itself firmly in the past. While they've backtracked on both the Smash Bros. EVO controversy and the Youtube Adsense skimming, that these were even factors at all speaks to a company that wants to stonewall broadcasted gaming in a time when its competitors are building direct access to it within their new consoles. With my own new focus on this content, it seems incongruent to use a Nintendo reference as a handle.

There's more to it than that, tune in to a cast sometime and I'll be happy to chat. Thanks for visiting!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Two days away.

https://www.facebook.com/events/607894479222956/

Saturday. 6 PM Eastern. Mike Maulbeck of Code Avarice (creator of Paranautical Activity), Careless of VGM band Random Encounter, Will Strouse’s interview with Mega Ran, an E3 preview roundtable, and I’m giving away free games. You know you want in.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Blue Shell Spectacular on June 8!

That's right, bitches! The first in a recurring series of six-hour super specials takes place on 8bitx.com this June 8! Join the event to stay updated on all the details!

https://www.facebook.com/events/607894479222956/

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Pretty!

I'm finally giving the site a makeover, as I'll be using it as a hub for my various projects- BSM minishows, video game livestreaming (check the convenient mini-window on the left there!), radio demos and all other sorts of neat stuff. Keep checking in!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

We'll start from scratch, we'll start again.


It's always winter that does this to me.

I started my first foray into the VGM podcast business in June of 2010, when I began development on WNES Videogame Radio, which would air on the Connecticut School of Broadcasting's then-new student internet station, All Noise Radio.

In February 2011, shortly after MAGFest and in the face of joining 8bitX and starting a new job at Best Buy, I paused what had then been a fairly consistent run of shows. I felt overwhelmed by my new duties, and wanted to take the show in for a much-needed retooling. This was the first of what would be several significant gaps through the year in what was supposed to be a weekly schedule.

In January 2012, three months after converting to live broadcasting, and coming off of what had been a long, exhausting MAGFest, I was so burned out on WNES that I took it under for three months, and gave the program a complete overhaul, changing the website and the name (to the Blue Shell Manifesto), and rebuilding the show parts and structure from the ground up, hoping that a new brand would help me stick to a regular schedule. Still, this did not work, and even attempting to produce my show in seasons failed to keep real life from constantly interfering in my showrunning plans.


And now, we're here. The very end of February 2013, and once again I stand at a crossroad.


I volunteered to be 8bitX's new program director back in September. At the time, there were 11 individual shows on 8bitX, tied together by a very sparsely-populated auto-DJ.

Six months later, 8bitX is now home to 18 shows (3 of which I've recruited on my own, as well as the 8bitX Playthrough which is fully curated by me), a video series (with more to come), and an auto-DJ that's been whipped into shape with constant music updates, promos, and a new-music rotation. We've streamed MAGFest and several events since then, with every intention to continue doing so. We've brought on Geekbeat LeRadio and the Black Tribbles, among the best internet shows in Boston and Philadelphia respectively, and we've hosted listening parties for numerous VGM and chipmusic artists. We've gained a small number of habitual listeners, and the respect and the interest of the VGM community. By the efforts of myself, Will Strouse, Robert Swackhamer, Obtuse, and numerous others, 8bitX has grown dramatically in its scope and content in half a year.

Yet, there is much more to be done. A number of our showrunners now create video content, which should be organized and promoted by the 8bitX label. Our promotion must improve- we must be more diligent about getting the word out about our shows and events to gaming sites and social media, so that our content creators only need to worry about putting out the best work they can and know they're being heard. There are still plenty of glaring empty spots in our weekly schedule, and there are plenty more podcasts that I've been wanting to contact about filling them. There are plenty of artists who need to be contacted in order to add their music to our stream, and in the past two weeks, the show promos I'd built for MAGFest are now truly showing their age and need to be replaced.

As an individual content creator, I've had issues keeping a weekly schedule even before I had this sort of responsibility, and once again, the cracks are starting to show. Keeping any kind of weekly content running is difficult, but it's far more so when you're running a one-man program. Any kind of twist of fate- and there have been quite a few of those for me lately- can throw off not just a week's programming, but a month's worth of momentum.

When I started WNES way back in summer 2010, I put together a two-hour show in the style of a theoretical all-VGM radio station. Today, that station is as real as it can possibly be right now, and taking care of it is both more rewarding and better-suited to my working habits than working a weekly show has ever been.

MAGFest X- the same one that wore me out- was when I first played with the idea of getting out of individual podcasting to take full control of the day-to-day streaming of 8bitX.

Today, I have at last made the decision to do exactly that.

I will be performing one more two-hour show this coming Thursday, February 28th, 2013. It will be my 73rd- and last- regular program as an individual showrunner. After this point, I will fully assume the duties of 8bitX's program director, and guide our music and content stream into the next stage of its development and beyond.


However, this is not the end of my work as a commentator, or of the Blue Shell Manifesto name.

The next part of developing 8bitX as a stream will be producing several series of mini-shows: 2-10 minute pieces of content airing at spiraling intervals through the broadcast week. The Blue Shell Manifesto will lead the way in this new, additional source of content, featuring my own personal rants, as opposed to representing 8bitX as a whole. Other parts of the Blue Shell Manifesto- Today's Trollface, the Balls of Steel Award, Protip of the Week, interviews with VGM and chip artists, and more- will also make appearances on the main 8bitX stream in this manner. Really, I'm not so much ending my own show as I am breaking it down for parts.

Through everything I've done in this podcasting business, I've gotten far more accolades for my production skills than everything else combined. Building audio parts and developing program structure are what I do best, and so I've decided to take these talents and put them to the best possible use I can think of- supporting every single person who volunteers their time and effort to make things for 8bitX.

There may come a day where I go back to building a show myself- but when I do, I won't be doing it alone. If 8bitX gets where I want it to go someday, I've got one hell of an endgame planned. But that's some distance off.

Thank you all for listening. This site will stay up to host my archives, and will eventually become a hub for my own contributions to the mini-show project. If you're disappointed by this news, all I ask is that you give the main stream at 8bitx.com a try. Soon, it'll sound just like everything I've been doing here to this point.

With ego bruised and elbows sore, it's time to build 8bitX bigger, and maybe better than before. Seeya in March.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Blue Shell Manifesto #30: Butt Seriously, Hold On (2.7.2013)


This week, I talk a bad January for game devs, EVE Online's Battle Of Asakai, J.J. Abrams does Valve, and more! Plus, new music from the Plasmas, GameChops, and Dwelling of Duels!

The Blue Shell Manifesto 2.7.2013
Download the podcast right here: BSM 2013-02-07 (128kbps MP3, 112 MB, 117 minutes)

SHOW RUNDOWN

"Mega Air" by Pixel8ter
Arrangement of "Air Man" from Mega Man 2 (NES)
Game Music Record Label (2013)
music.gamechops.com

"Dr. Wahwee" by BeatAvenger ft. DJ Cutman
Game Music Record Label (2013)
music.gamechops.com

Item #5: A brutal January for the video game industry
polygon.com - A shaky start to 2013 could be good for the games industry
polygon.com - Wildman Kickstarter could save the company, Gas Powered CEO already trying to rehire
forbes.com - Atari US Files for Bankruptcy, Sells Assets, Logo
destructoid.com - Square Enix loses money, blames console market
destructoid.com - GameStop: No plans for growth, store-opening staff fired

"Wicked Child" by the Plasmas
Arrangement of "Wicked Child" from Castlevania (NES)
Castlevania: Holy Whiplash! (2013)
soundcloud.com/mauricio-plasma

"You Give Me) Wings" by Ivan Hakštok
Arrangement of "Wings" from Xenogears (PSX), "Dream of the Shore" from Chrono Cross (PSX), and "Baba Yetu" from Civilization IV (PC)
Dwelling of Duels January 2013: Free month (2013)
dwellingofduels.net

shoryuken.com - Fighting Game Fans Raise over $225,000 for Breast Cancer Research. Smash Wins!
shoryuken.com - Skullgirls Gets Cash, Exhibition Support at Evo 2013

"Battlefield (Multi Man Melee 2)" by flashygoodness
Arrangement of "Multi-Man Melee 2" from Super Smash Bros. Melee (GCN)
Super Smash Land Hidden Tracks (2009)
store.flashygoodness.com

"Descending From Below" by WMD
This Is The End (2013)
wmdchiptune.bandcamp.com

Item #4: Dead Space 3 infinite item glitch discovered, lol microtransactions
joystiq.com - Dead Space 3 glitch allows infinite resource farming
youtube.com - Dead Space 3 Unlimited Resource Farming Glitch (via GameFront)

"Betrayal" by William Kage
Halfont (2012)
music.williamkage.com

"She Can Has Long Ears" by Fishy
Arrangement of "She Had Long Ears" from NiGHTS into dreams... (Saturn)
NiGHTS: Lucid Dreaming (2011)
lucid.ocremix.org

youtube.com/8bitx - 8bitX on YouTube, featuring footage from this year's Game Over in Austin!

"Brazil Stage" by Abreu Project
Arrangement of "Brazil" from Super Spike V'Ball (NES)
Dwelling of Duels January 2013: Free month (2013)
dwellingofduels.net

"Goes With Everything" by A_Rival
Arrangement of "Guile Stage" from Street Fighter II: The World Warrior (Arcade)
Street Fighter x Mega Man OST (2012)
rivalrivalrival.bandcamp.com/

"Go Home And Be A Family Man" by Norrin_Radd
Arrangement of "Guile Stage" from Street Fighter II: The World Warrior (Arcade)
OverClocked Remix (2004)
ocremix.org

"Pink Key" by My Parents Favorite Music
Arrangement of "Graze The Roof" from Plants vs. Zombies (PC, Mobile, etc.)
Win When? (2012)
myparentsfavoritemusic.bandcamp.com

blacktribbles.podomatic.com - The Black Tribbles, LIVE every Thursday on 8bitx.com!

"Don Corneo (interlude)" by brentalfloss
Arrangement of "Don Corneo" from Final Fantasy VII (PSX)
Black Materia: Final Fantasy VII (2011)
megaranmusic.com

"Don of the Slums" by Mega Ran ft. Storyville and the Thoughtcriminals
Arrangement of "Don Corneo" from Final Fantasy VII (PSX)
Black Materia: Final Fantasy VII (2011)
megaranmusic.com

Item #3: A single mis-click causes the largest battle in EVE Online history
knowyourmeme.com - EVE Online: Battle of Asakai
tentonhammer.com - Sins of a Solar Spymaster #86: The Asakai Meltdown
themittani.com - Asakai Aftermath: All Over A Cobalt Moon

"Space Harrier" by the Spoony Bards
Arrangement of "Main Theme" from Space Harrier (Genesis)
The Spoony Bards (2011)
thespoonybards.bandcamp.com

"A Side Of Guitars" by Rize
Arrangement of various songs from Life Force (NES)
Dwelling of Duels January 2013: Free month (2013)
dwellingofduels.net

multiplayerblog.mtv.com - Nintendo And Namco Bandai Team For New 'Mario Kart' Arcade Game

"Lab 1" by Jake "virt" Kaufman
Arrangement of "Mission 1" from Double Dragon II: The Revenge (NES)
Double Dragon Neon (2012)
virt.bandcamp.com

"Invertebrate Retreat" by Danny Baranowsky, Vig, and zyko
Arrangement of "Lorenzo's Soil" from Earthworm Jim 2 (SNES, Genesis)
OverClocked Remix (2004)
ocremix.org

Item #2: OUYA and "Steam Box" stake a claim for micro-consoles
digitaltrends.com - The Ouya console is coming soon to a retailer near you
joystiq.com - Xi3 reveals tiny Steam-focused PC, Valve investment [update]
pocket-lint.com - Xi3 'Steambox' modular computer pictures and hands-on
polygon.com - Valve partner Xi3's 'Steam Box' codenamed Piston, early specs detailed at CES

"Pipe Dream" by Stemage ft. Lauren Liebowitz
Arrangement of "Beginner Race" from Marble Madness (Arcadem NES)
Where Good Marbles Go To Die (2012)
stemage.bandcamp.com

"Gravity Falls (Tourest Trap Remix)" by DJ Cutman
Game Music Record Label (2013)
music.gamechops.com

"Wwwwrasslemania (Make You Humble)" by Temp Sound Solutions
Arrangement of "Ted DiBiase Theme" from WWF Wrestlemania (NES)
now youre playing with powar 9: welcome to the next leval (2010)
tempsoundsolutions.bandcamp.com

Item #1: J.J. Abrams and Valve announce "working relationship"
wired.co.uk - JJ Abrams and Valve to team up for games and films
forbes.com - J.J. Abrams And Valve To Collaborate On Possible Video Game, Portal Or Half-Life Movie

"I Survive!" by Brandon Strader
Arrangement of "Still Alive" from Portal, "Want You Gone" from Portal 2, and "Plantation" from Cave Story (PC)
Dwelling of Duels July 2012: Free month (2012)
dwellingofduels.net

schedule.sxsw.com - Descendants of Erdrick with a special announcement from Richard Garriott