Thursday, June 9, 2011

Another WoW post...

I got stuck on an elevator today for about 20 mintues, luckly I had phone service the whole time so it really wasn't much different than class other than I got to be in some ways it was better...anyway I seemed to get some positive comments about WoW in my last post so I decided to share some of what I've done in the 3 years I've been wasting my life on this game.

My first character and still my main character is a Druid, I was a moron when I started (as are most people) and leveled as a moonkin when it was about equivalent to banging your head on a rock over and over again. Now I am a feral tank in a 4/12 heroic guild that raids casually a couple days a week. I'm way over 4 day 4 hours a day raiding and am a much more casual player than in the past. Slowly working my way to 10k achieve points as well

The second character I made is a Shaman that I pretty much only use for alt raids now as I prefer to heal dungeons and occasionally PvP on my Priest, I also have another tank Death Knight that I play when bored of my durid or if a guildie needs help through a 5 man.

Currently I'm leveling a Pally (tanking of course...its just too easy to get dungeon groups and they do comparable damage to ret until the mid 70s) but my main focus lately has been my Mage since its my first DPS only class to get past 10. I started to level arcane but hitting one button and one button only gets a bit old so I switched up to fire and love it. Pyroblast is about the most satisfying spell to see flying out of your character in the game. On a server I was previously on I have an 80 priest and pally that have been relegated to dust collectors.
WoW is definitely a massive timesink but I haven't ever really stopped enjoying it and when I did I took a couple months off and came back fresh and ready to play again. Current content is getting incredibly old though and I'm starting to feel like I did in ICC, but new stuff is right around the corner, and the game only keeps getting better with each patch.

Obligatory UI Shot  - Too lazy to take a new one

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Life update: No1Curr Edition

Quick update before bed as I've neglected the blog for a few days due to a few different things, mainly WoW, I made a mage and a pally and have been enjoying leveling again which is not really a very good sign but more on that another time.Also been writing a paper for American Lit, can't believe I'm not procrastinating it more, a riveting account of the mindset of several of the first people to America, should be a home run.

Ah well, better posts for another day

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Retro game recommendation: American McGee's Alice

In honor of the series long awaited (by me at least) return to gaming in 2 weeks, I present a very quick review of one of my favorite all time games: American McGee's Alice for the PC released in October 2000.
The game is presented in a 3rd person action adventure format, while it is nothing revolutionary it plays smoothly and adds to the best part of the game: the environment. If you like Alice and Wonderland at all then you owe it to yourself to play this game. This is what Tim Burton should have aspired to when creating the unnecessary Disney movie last year.

You play as Alice who has been sent to an insane asylum after her parents died in a fire, her insanity has warped wonderland into a brilliantly twisted version of its former self and your task is to go back through and fix Wonderland. You play though 9-10 levels ranging from a giant forest vale where you meet the caterpillar, the Mock Turtle, and must slay the Duchess; to city where the floor is a chessboard and you must move around according to chess piece rules. Almost every character from the Alice books makes it into the game and the story is presented so well it feels like a sequel that an opium smoking Lewis Carroll would approve of.

 The game comes for free with any purchase of the new game Alice: Madness Returns due out June 14, make sure to pick it up if you are a fan of well thought out and presented environmentally rich games.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Alchemist - The best cell phone "game" I've played so far

I'm currently in my last semester of school, 3 "minimester" classes that last the first 5 weeks of summer semester. This sounds great in theory but back to back to back 90 minute classes 5 days a week can get pretty boring pretty fast. Luckily I have the convenience of a cell phone and while up to this point I've been wasting my time on things like Mahjong or word searches and the like, I came across a wonderful little "game" today called Alchemy.

I put the term game in quotes because there isn't really an objective to it, unless you want to create all 370 elements in the game, but its incredibly addictive in its simplicity. You start out with a blank screen and 4 basic elements: fire, earth, water, and wind. You then combine these to make new elements or objects and can combine those and so on and so forth. For example: water and earth create a swamp and fire and wind create energy, combine the two together and you create life. Another screen contains a grid that you can add any previously completed element to the mix at any time and a simple double tap will duplicate any element. That is all there is to the "gameplay" but the possibilities are limitless and its insanely fun creating some outlandish things.

The app has been regularly updated adding new combinations and objects, there is even a suggestion box to suggest new combinations with previous elements. So far I've unlocked 58/370 possible objects, with the most advanced life being a chicken (which I then fried by combining with fire). I also created a Yoshi by combining an egg with a 1-up mushroom, a sand storm, and tequila by combing a worm with alcohol.

The only drawback I've found in the game is that it doesn't show what elements are used to create what, I should probably check all the features before I make a claim like this. Recreating previous combinations to attempt new ones is something I'd like to do easier. Overall I spent about an hour today messing around with this, and plan to see how far I can go without looking at one of the many FAQs online listing all possible combinations. A really neat little timewaster.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Of Sharks and Sith

Flaws: The Revenge of the Bad Argument
A good friend of mine and I got into a discussion/yelling match yesterday after one of his usual digs at the Star Wars series of movies. There is absolutely nothing new to this and his dislike for the movies has been brought up ad infinitum over the course of our friendship. What was new this time and made the argument worthwhile was his assertion that the movie Jaws had had more of a cultural impact than Star Wars had. Surely, despite his dislike for one of the most beloved and far reaching franchises in history, how could anyone actually think that this could be true?

The main point of his side was that Jaws had engrained a deep psychological fear into the hearts of a generation of moviegoers and continues to this day. No one can deny the profound effect that this movie had on the population, but save for several universally panned sequels and a not-too-terribly fun NES videogame, the heart of the influence of Jaws lies only in the fear it causes people that have seen it.

Now for the other side of the coin, Star Wars. Obviously I will not pretend any sense of neutrality on the subject as I consider myself a big fan of the entire series, but I feel as though I can make my point quite easily and logically. Even my friend cannot deny the effect that the series and Lucas had on the the tech and special effects of movies, that in and of itself creating a large cultural impact, but by that same note, Jaws is widely considered to have spawned the Summer Blockbuster movie craze, shifting the main season from Christmas. So I will stick to pure pop culture impact on which Star Wars is nearly unrivaled in modern society. Surely enough a simple Google of Cultural Impact produces the auto-result Cultural Impact of Star Wars and a Wikipedia article created by that same name is the first result to show up.

This, along with the fact that after the 6 movies, hundreds of books, multiple television shows, almost 50 videogames, and millions of fans/homages/spinoffs/references/etc. being ingrained into the zeitgeist of modern day America ever since “A long long time ago in a galaxy far far away” appeared on screen. The series is so influential that a lightsaber prop was flown into orbit for a couple weeks and then returned to Lucas, though I guess the same could have been done with Bruce the Shark if the movie had been set in space.  

The one thing that I cannot deny though is that sharks are definitely real and Star Wars is definitely not, so I do concede that and any related arguments that might come up.