How the game is played, Part Deux

To review from Part One, a good viral video should have… 

Uniqueness
Portability
Humor
Cats
Video games

So how come this video took off last year? 

Uniqueness: Oh yeah.
Portability: The video went viral, the audio from the commercial did not. Part of that is because we humans respond more to sight than we do sound, part of it is because of the “sweater full of mischief” seen in the video, but part of it is because there’s no good platform for viral audio right now. You want audio? Get a podcast. 
Humor. Oh freakin’ yes. Funny as all get out. Hilarious. Stunningly hilarious. Brilliantly hilarious. And it’s even better because it takes the same emotions we apply to warm fuzzy animals and applies to cold plastic and steel. I’m in awe. The guy or gal who did this needs to sign with Sattchi&Saatchi or Deutsch LA, and quick. 
Visuals: See comments under portability. 
Cats: No. 
Video games: No, but it does use a pre-existing meme, the tear-jerker pet adoption ad, which is essentially what video-game related memes do.This ad takes a pre-exisitng cultural icon and give it a new twist. This is why the zombie meme sorta works for the firearms industry: They take a pre-existing item on our cultural radar and tag along for the ride. Unfortunately, no one is doing that in a humorous way yet, and believe it or not, zombies and humor mix VERY well

Bottom line, if the gun companies want their stuff to go viral, it’s time to put down the tactical gear and pick up the clown nose. Guns (when used safely) are fun. Shooting stuff is fun. Gun owners are funny

Gun advertising? Not fun at all. And the sooner gun companies realize this, the more money they’ll make off the internet. 

Front Sight Four Day Defensive Handgun Course Review, Day Three

Day One is here

Day Two is here

Day Three

Today started out on one of the ranges in “Phase Two” of Front Sight, and you begin to get an idea of how big this place is. They have two 200 yard rifle ranges, plus an arroyo dedicated to shotgun and another dedicated to rifle, plus “Snipers Point”, an overlook with steel targets set out along a wash. We were on Range 14, but we soon left it for “Monsters, Inc.”, a bay with nothing but a few dozen doors set up to practice door entry with blue guns, and then it was of to the simulation bay for a live-fire “Shoot house” run.

And you know what? I’m tired and I still need to do some dry-fire practice, so I’ll leave what was in the shoot house and the rest of today for tomorrow.

Kel-Tec and SHOT Show

The phrase I kept hearing at SHOT this year was “What would Ruger do?”. Other gun manufacturers are realizng that Ruger’s had consistently popular guns recently, most notably the LCP, their .380 ACP pocket pistol, which kicked off the pocket .380 craze of a few years ago. However, the LCP borrowed substantially from of the Kel-Tec P3AT, the original pocket .380, so maybe the gun companies should look to Ruger for innovations in marketing and Kel-Tec for inovations in guns. 

And Kel-Tec certainly has new and completely original designs out there. I’ve argued online that George Kelgren is the most innovative designer out there since Gaston Glock, and I’ll stand by that argument to this day. My arguments are backed up with products like the aforementioned P3AT, the SUB-2000 pistol-caliber carbine (quick, name another carbine under $500! Time’s up!), the .308 RFB, the .22WMR PMR-30 pistol and a bunch of others. 

Walking by the Kel-Tec booth, I got a chance to examine their much-talked about (but rarely-seen) RMR-30 .22WMR carbine

Kel-Tec RMR-30

Right off the bat, this sucker is LIGHT. Very light. And skinny. It’d benefit from either a vertical foregrip or a MagPul grip, as I found it a bit hard to hang on to. Secondly, the mag relase is in the bottom of the pistol grip, not my favourite location for such a thing. 

Kel-Tec RMR-30 receiver

Other than that, though, I’m a total fanboy for this gun. Can’t wait to get one into my hands and wring it out for myself. 

The other gun that caught my in Kel-Tec’s booth was their SU-16E: A version of their venerable SU-16 rifle with an adapter for an AR-15 stock

Kel-Tec SU-16

Again, this is a very light rifle compared to other rifles in its class, primarily because it uses polymers in for the entire receiver, not just the lower part as in my CavArms AR

SU-16 Receiver

The SU-16 is an unsung hero of the AR world: It used a piston-drived action long before it was cool and takes standard AR magazines. It’s on my “will buy list” as a trunk / bug out gun, and the AR stock adapter makes it even more attractive. 

The biggest problem Kel-Tec seems to have is managing their success: The RMR-30 was announced last year at SHOT and they’re still not in your local gun shop. Not a bad problem to have, but it needs to be addressed in order for these groundbreaking guns can get into the consumer’s hands.

 

Shot Show GunBlogger Meetup AAR

Executive Summary: Wow. 


More later once I go through the cards and link back to everyone who participated. Suffice to say I’m SERIOUSLY impressed with you all: For a bunch of nobodies, there’s some smart cookies out there in the gunblogging world. 

Right now, I’m off to G-Lock with peeps from GunUp for a product demo, then later tonight it’s the 3 Gun Nation Shoot-Off, then more fun and games tomorrow!. 

Virtual gun nuts

Wolfenstein 3d

That’s a screenshot of one the very first 3-D First Person Shooter (FPS) games, Castle Wolfenstein 3-D. Since it was released twenty years ago, the video game industry has blossomed to into a bigger industry than Hollywood movies

Twenty years. That means if you were, say, 12 years old when Wolfenstein was released in 1992, you’re 32 now, are well into your career, have some disposable cash to spend, and you’ve been playing with (virtual) guns for twenty years. Chances are, you’re open to trying out the real thing now. 

I don’t think gun culture and the gun industry realizes just yet what that means. We can talk about anti-gun media bias all we want, but for the last twenty, people have been test-driving guns online: Now it’s time to safely welcome them into the real world of guns.