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Category Archives: Gaming

I got myself a PSVR bundle a few days ago. First off, I have to say it’s fucking amazing. I played a little over an hour in Eve: Valkyrie and I am solidly hooked. Very immersive and amazingly fun. It felt like what I always wanted playing Wing Commander on my friend Gilbert’s IBM PS/2 back in the early ’90s. A really amazing gaming experience, and I am looking forward to seeing what developers come up with for this peripheral. For me, this almost instantly turned into a must have device.
So, after playing some E:V I decide to check out another VR game. You can download a nice set of games known as Playroom VR that has 4 or 5 couch multiplayer games (where one person is using VR and the others are using the TV screen). One of these games is playable single player, and is a neat little 3D platformer. I played it for about 10 minutes, taking my time to look around and get into the VR experience. When I finished the game, something unexpected happened.
The game stopped showing me the game, and switched to the feed from my PSVR camera, and started counting down 3… 2…
Something I should mention here is that pants are from Satan’s bottom. Seriously, I hate wearing pants. Since I live alone, I tend to go completely naked. No one else here to be bothered by it, and I am completely physically comfortable.
So, on my screen is a picture of me wearing literally nothing but my PSVR headset, and counting down from 3. I don’t think I have pressed the PS Home button so quickly in my life.
Not cool Sony. Not. Fucking. Cool.

Jesse (the lead guitarist of the band I manage, Shedu) has loaned me a few PS4 games to get me by while I wait for Watch Dogs and Destiny to come out. The first is Assasins Creed 4, and the other is inFamous: Second Son. I opted to go with the Seattle based game first.

Been playing it off and on for a few weeks and was initially enjoying it. The controlls took a little too long to get used to, but I liked the over all feel of the game. I thought it was odd that I was busting drug dealers as freaquently as I was, but that will become clear in a moment. I went through and compleated *everything* in Seattle. All sections cleared 100%, all skill shards collected. Boots to asses for days. I was starting to get bored, the gameplay never really seemed to change. I finally get onto (what I am assuming is) the Aurora Bridge and it alludes to the fact that I want to go this way, but I have to complete a mission. I look at the map, and the onlything that shows up now are quick travel points and a star indicating where I started the game at. I check online and realize that that star is the start of a fucking mission, and not where I started the game at.

I am now merrily ripping through missions that seem *very* easy, and I assume that it feels that way because I have removed all sources of potential complication already. No fucking DUP in my town, thank you very much. I am now looking forward to playing more of this game again. I have to admit though that I feel a little stupid. I got a chance to meet and talk shop with the head of QA for SuckerPunch at Clever Dunnes the night the code went gold and they were prepping to ship. I bought him a congratulatory drink and had a pleasent time exchanging gaming QA war stories. I really can’t wait to bump into him again t let him know how epicly dumb I was with his baby. Should be a good night 🙂

 

Now I am off to bed. This following week is going to be very fun. I feel I should warn you all though, I have decided to pick up a PS4 camera so I can live stream my playing sessions of Watch Dogs. Beer, cursing, and dick and fart jokes will probably reach toxic levels. I’ll post pertinant info later for folks that want to help me on my path to internet mediocrity.

Today I have accidentally discovered the secret to me loving Titanfall.

First off, I should say that I already liked the game, although I was getting my ass handed to me on an insane level. Seriously, it was like a loony bin all got work release at once and their collective job was to ream my ass with bar-tending tools. It’s a really nice, well balanced first person shooter with wall running and you can summon a mech to pilot every couple of minutes, and the length of time you wait to summon a new one is lessened by how well you are whacking other players. Another nice thing is that there are AI controlled bots that spawn for both sides so you get a nice feel of a really full game without worrying about half a team rage quitting and completely fucking everything over. Plus, you can hack the enemy bots and they follow you providing cover fire. It’s pretty sweet.

So, I have not played in about 3 weeks due to other games grabbing my interest and me getting all ragey like I do when playing FPS’s. I decided to play some this afternoon, and since I have been on a serious Queen kick lately, I put on the soundtrack to Flash Gordon. That was apparently a brilliant choice. I only played for the length of the album, so about 40 minutes, and during that time I leveled 4 times, and my kill to death ration against human players (they track your human kills and bot kills separately) ended up being around 5:1 across all the games with my best being 9:1 and about 35 bot kills.

I am now going to walk away from the computer for a bit and not ruin my little perfect Titanfall moment. I think if I keep my play sessions limited to the length of the Flash Gordon sound track, and always listen to it when I play, I will get an insane amount of pleasure from this game.

Picked up pretty much everything I need to start making refrigerator pickles. My first couple of batches are going to be a pickled asparagus, pickled green beans, and pickled garlic. I have the stuff to do hot pack (e.g. shelf stable) but I want to do a batch of each as fridge pickles to see how things taste. If the brussel sprouts I have in the fridge are still ok, I may try pickling those as well.

As part of the prep for doing this, I washed all of the jars and rings. As I was dragging the portable washer out and in front of the sink, it dawned on me that I don’t have to move it to hook it up to the faucet. Seriously, I have been rolling that thing out from it’s spot next to the fridge to in front of the sink for no reason other than stupidity for months now. The dumb is strong with this one.

It would appear that I was incorrect in them already finishing up my background check. That is still happening and my boss seems to believe that it will be another week or two for them to finish that and get all the paperwork signed on their end to get me my offer letter. Not unexpected, but that does mean probably 3 more weeks before I get my benefits. I really can’t wait to get my vision checked for contacts / glasses and to go see the dentist.

Speaking of work, I actually enjoy my new position. I am gradually learning everything I need to know, and I can do 90% of my job while listening to music or podcasts so it makes my day fly. Today I sat down at my desk after lunch (which was spent practicing with my uke in the sun) and when I glanced at the time again it was 4 P.M.. Felt like minutes had passed. The only thing that is getting to me is how negative some of my co-workers are. I am still in training so when I ask a question I get about 4 or 5 minutes of ‘well this thing sucks and is the most horrible thing in the world’ before actually getting any actual instruction. I understand that they are probably burned out but I really don’t need to be drug down with them. After a particularly lengthy rant the other day about how everyone in the company except for the people on our team don’t know what they are doing, and how we don’t get paid enough, and how horrible what we do is, I just looked at them and said “I’m not answering phone calls from upset customers all day long, and even if I still was it means I have a job and a roof over my head. I love this job.”. It seemed to quiet them up a bit, but I think I am going to have to figure out how to mitigate this. I feel rude listening to my music turned up loud enough to not hear them for most of the day but there is only so much of the constant complaining that I can take. I need to figure out how to broach this with my team as a whole without sounding like an asshole.

On the gaming front, I seem to have been sucked into Diablo 3 pretty hard. I have my Harcore Mage up to level 52 on the Hard difficulty and that pleases me on some weird level. Still toying with the idea of getting the expansion, but I need to wait for my raise for that. My PS3 got the yellow light of death and I got it quasi fixed, but it is still over heating. Nick is going to take a look at it and can hopefully get it going. If not then I will probably put off getting a PS4 and replace the PS3. Too many games that I would like to finish on it, and I can get a used one at a reasonable price.

Starting to really get the urge to date again but I don’t know any single women that seem interested and the only places that I seem to meet women I am interested in are at work or while drinking at bars, and neither seems like the best of locations to look for romantic companionship. OK Cupid is a dead end, and I have no real idea of where to go to meet a nice and mellow lady that enjoys playing board games, watching marathon sessions of tv shows, and has an artistic bent. If any of you have suggestions or have a friend you might think would be interested in meeting me, fucking speak up 🙂

Started playing Civ V yesterday for the first time. Now it’s midnight and I intended to go to bed two hours ago. One more turn my fat ass.

Speaking of music (work with me), Shawn Smith has put his original demo record from 1990 up. $6 will get you four tracks of good tunes. If you like the man, get on this now since he is thinking of pulling it in a few hours.

http://shawnsmith.bandcamp.com/album/1990-columbia-records-demo-for-hardcore-fans-not-an-official-sanctioned-new-release-just-a-bit-of-history

I’ve been an avid gamer since I was in grade school. My parents taught me how to play both poker and spades at an early age (in the single digits if I recall correctly) as well as all the boxes of board games that we always had. I got into D&D in grade school with my friends James and Chris Dayson, and that started an insane love affair with pen and paper role playing. Over the decades I have played in table top games of many genre’s, larp games of different styles, and even helped create settings and mechanics for games that only friends played as well as a few games that saw print (thanks for letting me help Scooter). I’ve even dabbled in board game development to the point that I had a working prototype for a game idea I had, and spent time with old friends and a regular deck of cards explaining the basic concepts of game design while we came up with a new card game on the spot over an after noon and a case of beer.

Part of me has always wanted to get into game design more, even if it is just as a hobby. I noticed a few days ago that a fairly popular RPG creator that is available via Steam was on sale for 50% off, which made it very easy to justify the purchase. I have now started working with RPG Maker VX Ace by using a very well done tutorial that someone in the community has created.

I look at using this software the same way that I look at major companies using the Unreal Engine. If someone else has created the tools to help you make the game that you want to make, you would be a fool to not make use of them. There are plenty of companies that use other peoples game engines to make very popular and successful games, and I feel that I am doing nothing different. I can’t code my way out of a wet paper sack, but with RPGMVXA all of that is taken care of for me. The art assets are provided as well, so while what is at my disposal will not look entirely unique, I will have the opportunity to tell an interactive story that has the potential to impress and entertain. The other upside to this is that it will help give me a better idea of how to approach things on a QA level if I ever find a job doing QA for a game company again.

The only downside that I am having with this right now is that there are additional resources that could make things easier for me as well as help me create a more polished product that are out of my immediate price range. There is a resource pack that is a ton of High Fantasy tiles, sprites, etc. that would be great to have access to but costs $50.  If any of you would like to toss me $5 to help defray the cost of this resource pack, I would greatly appreciate it and would be happy to provide you a copy of the game when it is completed in about (realistically) a year and a half. I’ll even list you in the credits 🙂

I’ll be posting dev / design stuff here as the project goes on, but I might set up a completely different section of the blog to deal with that. In the meantime, I need to get back to my tutorial and apply nose to grindstone.

So I have been having a really weird problem in a game I love playing on Steam. I have purchased the M:TG Duels of the Planeswalkers games for the past 3 years. I love the physical game, but I really dislike the need to have hundreds of dollars into the physical game to even stand a chance of doing well in tournaments, so DotP scratches the itch for me.

I started seeing a really odd issue after purchasing the last two bits of DLC (several new decks for the game) that is not allowing me access to all the content I paid for. It’s an actual bug that a lot of people are experiencing but WotC has no fix for the issue yet. There is a workaround though, and I brough this up to WotC. You can purchase a key to unlock individual decks (instead of unlocking all the cards via play like I prefer) and I was hoping that they could just issue me those keys. I’ve put 320 hours into the game (don’t you judge me…) and would have had everything unlocked by now if it weren’t for this bug.

Apparently WotC has no control over those specific keys, since Valve offers them and not WotC. So now I have to wait for Valve to respond to me about this issue, and both the WotC rep I spoke with and I have a feeling that the response is going to be a polite “sorry but no”. The support rep (Brian was his name) said that since I had been polite and open about the whole situation that he was going to pass my issue up the chain and see if his higher ups could help make things right. Within an hour I got a response back from someone with some authority apologizing for the situation and asking me for my physical address so that they could mail me some physical product.

I guess the point of this post is to publicly give Wizards of the Coast support staff some kudos for doing what they could. They didn’t fix my problem, but they are going well beyond what most companies would do in a situation like this and I feel that deserves some show of appreciation. Hopefully I will be making a post like this about Steam in the near future.

I am involved with an online gaming community called Unrepentant. We have about 500 members across about 20 different games and over all it’s a good group of folks. I was playing a game of Smite with a few of these folks and one of them started asking about drinking games. I of course brought up Tablero. I then linked the wikipedia article for the basic rules of the game and now, after 5 days, I have members of my community hooked on the game.

My friend Titan Iapitus works for a company that makes signs, and he decided to make himself a custom Tablero board and made it at work. I just felt the need to share it with you all. I feel so proud right now 🙂

 

titans board

My friend Justin posted on his Facebook page that he was trying to figure out a drinking game for Cards Against Humanity, and I thought up the following. Since the mechanics of CAH are exactly the same as Apples to Apples, it should work with either game.

It should be decided before hand what type of alcohol is being used. I suggest beer for people just having a good time for the evening, wine for more formal parties, and liquor for Olympic drinkers, or for members of Shedu.

Set up the game and choose first judge as dictated in the rules. Give everyone playing a shot glass. Start game play as normal. When the judge decides on a winner, they should also choose a loser. Loser pours a shot of alcohol into both the winners and the judges shot glasses. Play now passes to the loser instead of to the left like it would in a normal game. Winner is the last person with alcohol in their bottle(s). People who have lost may continue to play, but if they are selected as a loser then instead of the loser filling the shots, they must pick from among the players that still have alcohol to fill instead, this may end up being the winner or judge of the round.

Now to get some folks together to play test this…

So, Blake and I have been discussing the concept of getting 4 to 6 other people together to all pitch in on a couple boxes of boosters and setting up a regular draft league. Is there anyone interested in joining us? We can hash out details once we have some solid interest.