Monday, October 30, 2017

Let's Play Sid Meier's Pirates: Part II

This is Part II in my Let's Play: Sid Meier's Pirates series. When last we saw the dread pirate Nerdbeard and his intrepid crew, they had just uncovered buried treasure. In this episode, we follow the crew as they face famous pirates bent on revenge, uncover clues about the location of Nerdbeard's sister, fight the dreaded Baron Raymondo and attack a few Spanish held towns along the Caribbean. Some harsh truths about playing on the Apprentice level are also revealed.

Friday, October 27, 2017

More JFK Assassination Files Released

The National Archives released about 2,800 records related to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy late last night. In a move that will only fuel the conspiracy theories,  a number of government agencies prevailed upon President Trump at the 11th hour to block about 300 further documents. Agencies seeking to have those documents blocked have until April to report and reconsider their reasons for blocking those documents.

Meanwhile, there's not much of note in what got released last night. Obviously, there's no smoking gun and no flat-out confessions from members of shadowy intelligence organizations. Still, there are a few nuggets in the docu-dump. Here's a list of some of the more interesting documents revelations:

  • A local British newspaper received an anonymous call about "some big news" in America 25 minutes before President John F Kennedy was assassinated. A memo to the director of the FBI, dated November 26 1963, noted that an anonymous phone call was made to the senior reporter at the Cambridge News at 6.05pm on (12:05pm Central Time in the U.S.) the day Kennedy was shot. The caller said only that the Cambridge News reporter should call the American Embassy in London for some big news and then hung up. After the word of the President's death was received the reporter informed the Cambridge police of the anonymous call and the police informed MI-5

  • An FBI memo discussed Lee Harvey Oswald's "Fair Play For Cuba"activities. A document from the FBI office in New Orleans indicates that an FBI agent was keeping up "with Cuban sources" for information relating to the Pro-Castro "Fair Play for Cuba Committee," which Oswald was a member of. The document says that the committee appears to have gone dormant since Oswald left the area, and that the "Dallas Division for information" is searching for Oswald. It says that if Oswald has relocated to Dallas "he may inaugurate an FPCC branch in that area."

  • The FBI received a call at its Dallas office threatening Oswald's life the night before he was shot and killed by Jack Ruby. The report says "We at once notified the chief of police and he assured us Oswald would be given sufficient protection. This morning we called the chief of police again warning of the possibility of some effort against Oswald and he again assured us adequate protection would be given. However, this was not done." The report goes on to mention J. Edgar Hoover's suspicions that Jack Ruby was an "underworld" figure "with the reputation of being a homosexual."

  • The Soviet Union believed Kennedy's death was the result of a conspiracy. An FBI document discusses how the Soviet Union reacted "with great shock" to the assassination of Kennedy. The assassination shocked Soviet diplomats who preferred Kennedy as President because they held him in such high esteem and that they knew little about Lyndon Johnson. Some within the Communist party believed that the assassination was in fact a coup initiated by the "ultraright." They were also worried that a rogue US general might use the lack of leadership to fire a nuclear weapon at the Soviet Union. The memo goes on to state that Soviet officials had denied any involvement with Lee Harvey Oswald, who had briefly defected to the Soviet Union years before: "They described him as a neurotic maniac who was disloyal to his own country and everything else." The KGB believed Oswald to be unstable, in part owing to his suicide attempt while in Soviet custody.

  • Fidel Castro denied involvement in the Kennedy assassination. A report from the House Select Committee on Assassinations, which was formed in 1976 to investigate the killings of President Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr, says that the members met with Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, "who assured the Committee that neither he nor his government had any involvement in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy."

  • Dallas Police Officer J.D. Tippett was accused of being the real assassin. An FBI document discussed an alleged conversation between an informant and H. Theodore Lee, where Lee indicated that previous members of the Fair Play For Cuba Committee had said that Patrolman Tippett (who had been murdered by Oswald about 45 minutes after the JFK assassination) had met Jack Ruby and an unnamed third party at Jack Ruby's night club a week before the assassination. 
So, what's the takeaway from this? Well, it certainly seems to torpedo the theory that the Soviets had anything to do with the JFK assassination. And the recently released documents don't do anything to advance the theory that Castro had anything to do with it. The theory that Lee Harvey Oswald was a CIA agent who went rogue and the CIA covered up any connections he had to the agency in order to avoid embarrassment still has some legs, though. Also worth noting is that there doesn't seem to be anything in these documents indicating direct evidence of a second shooter.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Terminator 6

After the disappointing box office returns of Terminator: Genisys, the rights to the Terminator franchise have reverted back to its creator, James Cameron, who wrote and directed the first two films. Now, Cameron says that he's pushing forward with Terminator 6. And, in order to fix the franchise, he's going back to basics and Terminator 6 will ignore all the movies after Terminator 2, which is smart, because everything since that movie is a complete mess. In Terminator 3, Sarah Connor dies, John Connor becomes some kind of drifter and Judgement Day happens in 2004. Terminator Salvation spins out of Terminator 3 where it shows us the post-apocalyptic world that the adult John Connor lives in and the movie was so bad that my brain had mercy on my and managed to forget most of it. But, then there's that TV show, the Sarah Connor Chronicles which follows a terminally ill Sarah Connor as she protects John from wave after wave of terminators who just can't seem to get the job done. And, of course, Genisys just sucks. Terminator fans are used to retcons, right?

So, Terminator 6 will pick up from Terminator 2, but what can we expect? I wouldn't be surprised if it's a tale about a killer robot driving instructor who goes back in time for some reason and has to make a choose whether his best friend lives or dies (his best friend is a talking pie!). Maybe the film will go back to its roots and just feature an unstoppable killing machine from the future hunting down and attempting to kill Sarah and John. Or maybe the Terminator's target will be Kyle Reese this time and Sarah and John are tasked with protecting baby Kyle. I feel, though, that, at its heart, the original Terminator movie was a horror film. It just needs to be about a deadly game of cat and mouse between the terminator and its target(s). There target doesn't even have to know about the future war against the machines. No need to explain time travel paradoxes or Judgement Day or anything else. No relying on special effects to push the story and no excessive super heroics from our protagonists.

Barring that, I'd like to see Terminator 6 definitively end the franchise altogether. Let's see the final defeat of Skynet and its last ditch attempts to take out the human resistance via time travel. Once the terminator in 6 fails in its mission, that's it. Skynet is gone and the franchise ends on a hopeful note. But, no. We know that won't happen. Why? Well, to paraphrase what Kyle Reese said in the first film: "Listen and understand: Those are movie producers out there. They can’t be bargained with. They can’t be reasoned with. They don’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And they absolutely will not stop, ever, until they've milked every last penny out of this franchise".

Monday, October 23, 2017

Let's Play Sid Meier's Pirates

Recently, the folks over at Humble Bundle gave Sid Meier's Civilization III away as a free download via Steam. Or course, I couldn't help but get in on the deal. I haven't played it yet, but it reminded me of another one of Sid Meier's games: Pirates. Sid Meier's Pirates was released in 2004 as a remake to a game that came out in 1987. I remember playing Pirates on my old Tandy 1000 back in those days, and the newer version has been a big favorite as well.

Your character is a man whose family was imprisoned by the evil Marquis de la Montalban. Fortunate enough to evade capture, but left penniless on the streets, your character signs on to a sailing vessel to travel to the Caribbean to seek his fortune as a privateer and perhaps even rescue his family. You sail all over the Caribbean attacking ships, sacking towns, dueling enemy Captains and charming the ladies.

In Part I of my Let's Play: Sid Meier's Pirates, I go through creating a character, getting licensed to privateer from various countries, attacking enemy ships, fencing against enemy ship Captains, trading with merchants, obtaining higher ranks and finding buried treasure.

Friday, October 20, 2017

Why Zero To The Power Of Zero Is One

While speaking with my daughter about her math homework earlier this week, we got on the topic of exponents and the proper expression of 00 (That's zero to the power of zero or 0^0). The inclination is to say that 00 is undefined because of two distinct math laws that seem to contradict each other: 

  1. Any number to the power of zero is 1.  
  2. Zero to any power is 0. 

Before I get into any explanations, let's keep in mind that I'm not even close to being a "real" mathematician. I use a lot of math in my computer programming background, but, really, I'm just a dad who has a burning hatred for this so-called "common core math" that teaches math by rote rather than by theory. 

Dividing Exponents

We know that, when you multiply exponents with the same base, you add the exponents:
  • xa * xb = xa+b
And, when you divide exponents with the same base, you subtract exponents:

  • xa ÷ xb = xa-b
So, under the law of dividing exponents, x5 ÷ x5 = x5-5 = x0 = 1
Plug in a value for x, and remember that any number divided by itself is 1: 25 ÷ 25 = 32 ÷ 32 = 1

Aha, but you can't divide by zero, right? So 05 ÷ 05 = 0 ÷ 0 = ????

Almost Zero

If we can't divide by zero, how close can we get? Using the exponent calculations below, you'll see that, as the base and the exponent get closer to zero, the product approaches 1.

It could certainly be pointed out that this doesn't directly prove that 00 = 1, but if we want the xx function to be right continuous at 0, then 00 must be 1.

How We Think About Division

We tend to think of multiplication as addition of stacks and division as subtraction of stacks. Exponents are then shorthand for the multiplication or division of the stacks of the same amount. In order to get to the bottom of this 00 question, we have to alter our way of thinking about multiplication and division. Instead of seeing them as tools of addition and subtraction, we have to try to see it as ways to map elements on a grid. With that in mind:

  • 2 = 32 ways to map a 2 element set to a 5 element set. 
  • 20 = 0 ways to map a 2 element set to a 0 element set
But there is one way to map a zero element set to a zero element set. A zero element set is an empty set, so when you map an empty set to itself: The identity function which draws a line straight through coordinates 0,0. 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Helen Henny and Mr. Munch Call It Quits

CEC Entertainment, the parent company that owns the Chuck E. Cheese chain of pizza restaurants (Where a kid can be a kid and where an adult can be a complete assclown), recently announced that they are retiring Munch's Make Believe Band from its restaurants. The company believes that the animatronic band is too outdated to retain the modern child's attention for very long. A dance floor will be put in its place so that kids can rock out in their own way.

Munch's Make Believe Band, which featured Chuck E. Cheese, Helen Henny, Mr. Munch, Jasper Jowels and Pasqually, had been created from the bones of Showbiz Pizza's band, The Rock-afire Explosion in the aftermath of the acquisition of Chuck E. Cheese by Showbiz Pizza. Chuck E. Cheese had filed bankruptcy in the wake of the Atari crisis in 1983 (since the restaurant was basically an Atari-exclusive arcade that served pizza ) which allowed Showbiz Pizza to buy them out and then unify the brand under the more recognizable Chuck E. Cheese name. The new band members were just frankensteined onto the robotic hardware of the old ones. This sort of imagery is likely one of the influences for the popular mobile game Five Nights at Freddy's.

Since decommissioning of Munch's Make Believe Band began last month, ensembles have begun popping up for sale on Ebay and Craigslist. One has to wonder what an 80s-ers animatronic band would go for. Maybe 100,000 skee-ball tickets? No, that's barely enough to buy one of those plastic spider rings these days.

Still, if the price is right, it sounds like a perfect opportunity for someone to open up a real life Freddy Fazbear's Pizza on the cheap. I'd imagine that finding someone to work night security might be an issue. Personally, if I happened to get hold of one, I'd mock it up to look like an Bullwinkle Moose knock-off, put it on my front porch and program it to say "Sorry, folks! We're closed for two weeks to clean and repair America's favorite family fun park. Sorry!" whenever someone rang my doorbell. Maybe Disney Theme Parks could buy a few bands and put them in the Country Bear Jamboree or make them the house band in the Hall of Presidents.

While we're on the topic, I'd like to mention two things related to the Rock-afire explosion. First, is the excellent documentary on the band, its creator and its long-time fans:

The creator of the Rock-afire Explosion, Aaron Fechter is keeping busy and is keeping the band alive for the fans. He occasionally makes videos of the Rock-afire Explosion covering modern songs. Whether or not you're a fan, you have to admire the dedication Aaron Fechter. The programming and maintenance alone likely involve a significant investment in time and energy. Here's a video of the band covering Cee-Lo Green:

Monday, October 16, 2017

Using Portals In No Man's Sky

Have you found all 16 glyphs yet? Do you have a portal address that you'd like to travel to? Well, beware, because there are still a number of dangers that await you on the other side. Still, if you prepare yourself with the right supplies, you might just be able to survive the journey. 

It goes without saying that, if you want to use a portal, you'll have to find one first. In order to do that, set up a Signal Booster on whatever planet your base is on and look for a Monolith. Head over to the monolith and interact with it. Depending on which race controls the sector your planet is in, the Monolith will ask you for either a Gek, Vy'keen or Korvac artifact. If you happen to have one in your inventory and want to give it up, the Monolith will reveal the location of a portal to you. When you find the portal, you'll have to charge the buttons with various ores and oxides. Once that's done, be sure to ask the portal for your planet's address, just in case. Then, enter the address of the planet that you want to go to and the portal will open. If you're just going for a quick exploration mission, no worries. However, if you're of the mind to stick around on the planet, you will run into trouble. 

It seems that the makers of No Man's Sky don't want players to use portals as a means for permanent travel. Once you're through the portal, you'll find that you cannot access your ship or summon your freighter. Worse, if you travel to a depot or any other colonial outpost with a landing pad, you'll find that no ships will land there so you won't be able to buy a ship to continue on with. And if you happen to find the location of a crashed ship, there will only be a beacon there. But, don't worry, there's away around this mess. It just takes some preparation. 

Before you go through the portal, make sure to pack up your base. Deconstruct everything and put them in your base containers. Then, deconstruct the containers. Don't worry, your stuff will still be in there when you re-create them later. Make sure you have in your inventory the materials necessary to make a signal booster and an exocraft. Then, fly your ship over to the portal and walk through it. Once you're through, set up the signal booster and have it search for a habitable base. The one I found was a 9 hour walk from the portal I came through. Create an exocraft and drive towards the habitable base. Using the Nomad exocraft cut my estimated travel time down to 2 hours. Luckily, I found another habitable base about 10 minutes into my journey. Once you find the base, claim it. Then, travel back to the portal and go back through it. Get in your ship and fly up to the space station in that sector. Go through the transport tube to your new base and your ship will follow you. 

My own portal adventure got me to within 650,000 light years of the galactic hub. Still a long way to go, but a nice shortcut. There are portal addresses out there for planets within the galactic hub, just use your Google-Fu.

Friday, October 13, 2017

The Orville

During its initial marketing phase, Seth McFarlane's pet sci-fi project, The Orville, was sold as Star Trek: The Next Generation meets Family Guy. And, while there are definite comedic moments in the show, it's really more of a sci-fi drama with comedic elements. You might even argue that, with so many Trek alumni being involved at some level, it's a spiritual successor to Star Trek: The Next Generation.

The Orville follows the exploits of Captain Ed Mercer (Seth McFarlane), his first officer and ex-wife Kelly Grayson (Adrianne Palicki) and the rest of the eclectic crew of The Orville, a small exploratory ship in service to the Planetary Union. Their adventures involve dealing with the dangers of outer space, hostile alien civilizations as well as the common, sometimes comedic problems of every life. Critics, for some reason, absolutely hate the show while the general viewing public seems to like it. Personally, after five episodes, I'm a fan, despite some of the heavy handed comedy. Well, that, and, every time I hear Captain Mercer, I think of Brian from Family Guy.

Comparisons with Star Trek: Discovery are inevitable since the two shows are both undergoing their first seasons this year. The Orville is easier the more optimistic and light hearted of the two shows which, to me, puts it more in line with Gene Roddenberry's vision of the future. Star Trek Discovery, while entertaining and engaging seems to have lost that direction four episodes in. And, if there was any doubt that The Orville is carrying the torch for Star Trek TNG, notable Trek alumni like Brannon Braga, Robert Duncan McNeil and Johnathan Frakes have all lent their talents to the show in some form. We can't be too far off from a Patrick Stewart cameo.

Overall, if you're looking to get your Trek fix, I think that The Orville is more in line with what you're looking for. If you gravitate more towards Ron Moore's Battlestar Galactica, then Star Trek: Discovery fits that bill.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

No Man's Sky: Find All 16 Portal Glyphs

I've been playing No Man's Sky since The Foundation update. I picked it up used for $10. Considering the number of people who dumped the game just after launch, I probably paid too much. Still, I've found it to be entertaining enough. It's a tough game to classify. It tell my son that No Man's Sky is "Space Minecraft" with an emphasis on exploration rather than building.

The latest update, Atlas Rises, added portals to the game. Portals can transport you to any planet so long as you know that planet's address. It's a lot like Stargate in that you dial up the planet's address using glyphs on a rotating ring. Once the glyphs are entered, a portal opens up within the ring. The catch is, in order to dial the glyphs, you have to "discover" them first. You may be able to see a flying whale glyph on the metal ring, but, unless you've actually found the glyph, you can't dial it. It's like an old touch-tone phone with all the buttons on the keypad removed. I order to call someone, you'd have to find the buttons and put them on the keypad.

Alas, Poor Krepptik! I Hardly Knew Ye!
Finding glyphs can be a tedious process. They're found in the graves of dead Travelers. Those graves are generally found in caves and they look like an Atlas symbol. You can stumble upon them while exploring a planet, or, if you encounter a Traveler in a planetary building or a space station, you can ask them where they came from and they'll tell you where their grave is for 100 nanite clusters. After encountering 16 Travelers during your journeys, you'll have found all 16 glyphs. That could take a while, and it'll cost you a total of 1600 nanite clusters. Thankfully, there's a shortcut that will take you only about 2 hours and will cost you only 100 nanite clusters. You'll have to exploit a glitch in No Man's Sky in order to do it, so let's hope that by the time you've read this, Sean Murray and the No Man's Sky development team haven't patch the glitch yet.

Aren't You Supposed To Be Dead? 
Keep jumping to various systems and checking out their space stations until you find one with a Traveler in it. The Traveler will just be hanging out among the other races in there. Talk to the Traveler and listen to them. Choose the nice conversation options. When the conversation ends, talk to them again and ask them where they are from. It'll cost you 100 nanite clusters. You'll be directed to a grave on a planet within the system. Go to it, extract the glyph and place a beacon nearby. Then head back to the space station. Go to the galactic trade terminal and buy something. Get back into your ship and head back to the beacon that you placed by the Traveler's grave. The grave will have been reset and you can loot it for another glyph. Repeat this sequence until you've got all of the glyphs. The glyphs do not repeat, so you'll only have to do the sequence 16 times. It took me about 2 hours to get all 16 glyphs.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Star Trek Discovery

Star Trek: Discovery (aka DSC) premiered a few weeks back, first on CBS proper and then continuing onward on CBS All Access in the U.S. and Netflix everywhere else. Set 10 years before the five-year mission of the Enterprise under the command of Captain Kirk in the "Prime" (non-reboot movie universe), DSC follows the journey of Michael Burnham, a human woman who was raised by Sarek (Spock's father) after a Klingon attack left her orphaned. The show is served as geek-bait in the United States in order to get Star Trek fans to subscribe to CBS' brand new streaming service, CBS All Access. As much as I like Star Trek, there's no way I'm paying $6 a month to watch a show that doesn't release all of its episodes at once and contains commercial breaks to boot, especially when the rest of the world can watch it via Netflix. There are ways around that model, and I took the path of least resistance and wondered why I even bothered.

I've stuck with the show through 4 episodes and my general feeling is that, while it's a pretty decent show overall, Star Trek: Discovery doesn't really feel like Star Trek. Or, at least, it doesn't feel like
Prime Universe Star Trek. Discovery feels more at home in the universe created by the J.J. Abrams movies (the Kelvin Universe), both in tone and in visual style, but, there's likely some legal issues keeping CBS from placing Discovery in that Universe. With that being said, I like that, for once, we're being given a main character that is fallible. Burnhman makes mistakes and there are immediate, long-term consequences for them. Despite her mistakes, I don't feel that Burnham is irredeemable and I'm hoping that part of her journey on Discovery involves her path to redemption (and, by extension, the redemption of the Discovery crew). Even though the visual change in the Klingons is jarring, I appreciate the the people behind the show are giving us an alien species with a lot of diverse looks. For too long, Star Trek has given us alien species that all look alike when it makes more scientific sense that there'd be a bit of variation. I don't have a real issue with the overtly militaristic bent of Starfleet, nor the judgemental nature of the side characters. I feel like those traits are coming straight from DSC producer Nicholas Meyer, the man behind Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Kahn and Star Trek IV: The Undiscovered Country.

What I am having a hard time grasping is the reasoning behind setting the show 10 years before Kirk's five-year mission. Four episodes in, there doesn't seem to be a compelling reason why Star Trek Discovery has to be set in the "past" as opposed to the "future" (10-100 years after Star Trek: Nemesis, the last Prime Universe movie). Indeed, the updated visuals, theoretical technology and Klingon motivations would make a lot more sense if were set in Star Trek's future rather than the past. So far the only reason I can come up with is that Kirk and crew is the pop culture focus of the Star Trek franchise, so TPTB wanted to be able to drop as many references to it as possible (Did you hear Michael mention her foster brother? She knew Spock! Squeeeee! Oh! And Captain Lorca has a pet tribble! Double Squeeeee!). So far, it seems that most of what has gone on with DSC could be done 100 years after Nemesis without any major changes to the storyline.

Overall, I kind of like what I've seen so far with Star Trek: Discovery. Is it good enough for a $6 a month subscription? No. Would I binge watch it on Netflix? Yep.  Is it worthy of the Star Trek name? The jury's still out. So far, I don't see much of the optimistic future that Gene Roddenberry envisioned when he created Star Trek. But I'm keeping an open mind. I hope it shows up eventually. That's part of what Star Trek is about, isn't it? Hope?

Friday, October 6, 2017

Rebooting The Dark Universe (again)

Movie industry reports have indicated that "The Bride of Frankenstein", which was to be the successor to "The Mummy" in Universal's Dark Universe franchise, is being pushed back for retooling.  This really comes as no surprise considering the abysmal performance of "The Mummy" at the box office.  This is yet another kick in the balls to the Dark Universe which has had a number of false starts over the years beginning with "Dracula Untold".

Personally, I don't understand the point of creating a shard universe of monsters. Universal keeps pumping money into making movies that connect with each other, but what's the payoff? Do all of the monsters get together in some big team-up film and do the Monster Mash together? Perhaps Dracula accuses the rest of the monsters of copyright infringement because the Monster Mash borrows too heavily from his Transylvania Twist. Then, a gritty law drama plays out involving 19th Century copyright law, questions of legal standing regarding laws from a country that no longer exists as well as the concept of "life of the artist" as it possibly pertains to "undeath of the artist". Dracula wins the case and is awarded back royalties which then go to pay off his legal fees, thus proving that lawyers are the root of all evil in the universe.

I guess that Universal could do a team-up film that's an Avengers/Suicide Squad mashup. The Nick Fury character (a Van Helsing) brings the monsters together in order to fight an even more sinister evil. The monsters could easily be shoe-horned into equivalents on the Avengers team:

  • Dracula is like Captain America, having slept since the late 1800s and he has to try to re-integrate into the world.
  • The Mummy is Thor 
  • Frankenstein is the Hulk, obviously.
  • Wolfman is Iron Man.
  • Invisible Man is Quicksilver (What, you didn't SEE that coming?)
  • Creature From the Black lagoon is the Scarlet Witch.
  • Phantom of the Opera is Black Widow

So, Van Helsing puts the team together and they're tasked with stopping something/someone from unleashing the ancient source of Evil which would turn our dimension into the Dark Universe, the universe where Evil reigns. They're each tempted along the way with how the rule of the Dark Universe would help them, but they resist and defeat it. Then, they break their bonds and escape back into the world until they are needed again.

Honestly, the big problem with Universal's Dark Universe is that it's putting their monsters in big budget action movies starring 50 year-old actors. They need to think smaller and do a $40 million horror film with some comedic elements. They need to rely on the psychological aspects of horror rather than CGI-fest destruction. They need to invest in the story first and make universe building secondary. The shared universe should be little more than an afterthought. Just having crossover films would work, doing something akin to Monster Squad on a more serialized scale.

Ultimately, I'd want to see horror comedy crossover films starring Seth Rogan and James Franco doing their best Abbot and Costello impersonation. Scenes for "Seth Rogan and James Fanco Meet The Mummy" practically write themselves:

[A desperately horny and impossibly high Seth Rogan eyes up The Mummy and debates with Franco on whether or not she's do-able.]

Franco: Do her! Take one for the team.
Rogan: She's old! She's like.....two hundred years old!
Franco: That just means she the ultimate cougar.
Rogan: Yeah, but what if it means her lady parts are all wrinkled and dusty?
Franco: Well, if you can't get her juices flowing down there, then I don't know what to tell ya.
Rogan: I didn't bring any condoms! What if she has some ancient STD or something and I end up as patient zero spreading the ancient Egyptian equivalent of The Clap?
Franco: Are you kidding? She's all wrapped up already! You're good to go.

I think that there's some potential for the Universal monsters, it's just that Universal has to get the dollar signs out of their eyes and lower the scale of the movies. While the franchise has some life in it (pun intended) it doesn't have the potential to make Avengers-level dollars. But, with lower budgets, personal stories and better writing, the franchise still stands to make a respectable pile.