Sunday, December 30, 2012

Legend of Andor .. oh yea

Looking forward to getting Legend of Andor in the mail within the next week.   Really enjoy the concept of a narrative adventure game (similar to Mice and Mystics).    Why is it awesome?   Check out this video.   Love this guy's walkthroughs.

So I've played through Robinson Crusoe .. the most complex cooperative board game EVER.   It's also the most logical, the most adventurous and well design games that I have ever played.   Basically your stranded on a deserted Island and your trying to survive.  There are 6 scenerio's included in the game and a seventh that you can download (it has KING KONG!!! but is, alas, all in german).   No doubt an english translation of the King Kong scenerio is forthcoming.

It is a game of exploration, resource management and decisions that will make you tear out your hair.  The game plays very smoothly and the cards have flavor texts that keep you in the story.  But everything makes sense, the design is pretty much flawless.   The only thing that could make the game better is a more complete rule book, but even that is a minor quibble because of the logic of the game, the 20 page FAQ on BGG.

I've played through the game twice solo, lost miserably due to weather.   Check out the walkthrough here (This guy talks real quick, but it should give you a quick general idea of the game.   Better walkthroughs are on BGG (if you have over an hour of free time ;D  )


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Elder Scrolls MMO info.

Yes, its coming, and with elements of GW2 .. it might be worth looking into.  

Arrow Ep. 106 - Royal Flush goes Aces High

The newest Arrow ep. delivers in many ways and improves on its past 'awkwardness'.
In this ep. we follow Ollie as he thwarts a family of bank robbers, who wear playing card masks ... Hello the Royal Flush Gang from DC Comics.    In this ep. we also see more from Merlyn, which is great, we also see some sparring right off the bat between Ollie and Digg, and some great scenes, and some decent fight scenes.   Here are some highlights:

- No more background Narration from Ollie .. Excellent.   In retrospect I'm thinking that now with Digg being with Ollie, he in a way replaces the Narration .. and that's good.  
- The sparring between Ollie and Digg... awesome.
- The Royal Flush gang was the most 'fleshed' out baddies that we've seen in Arrow.  I love the connection to the actions of Ollie's dad.    Also, the gang is not all gone.   There is always a chance we could see a future storyline with them (some of them) in the future.    Love the 'card masks'.  Also, the use of a shield vs. Ollie's arrow .. nice.  
- Acting is getting better.
- Love, just love the interaction between Laurel Lance (Dinah) and Merlyn .. Merlyn is a great guy, you can't help but like him.   Colin Donnell who plays him is really great in the role and if your a comic geek (even a little), you know that your going to enjoy (with a shed of a tear) the path that this character is going to go down in the future.
- Thea Queen's interaction with Merlyn is great.
- Speaking of interaction, now we finally have a good tender moment (over a tender burger) between mother and son.    This was good for the series.
- music was toned down from last ep., and the general direction was pretty tight.

Not so Good
- There was no cliffhanger at the end to make us watch another ep.   This was a 'one-shot' ep.   Now that Arrow has been picked up for an entire season (probably more) I hope future eps. will include something that will make us NEED to see what happens next.  

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Arrow ep. 105 Review

Just watched the newest Arrow episode titled 'Damaged'.   I'm thinking that its probably the best  of the Arrow series, with some nice moments splattered throughout it.   The whole cast has their part, and it was great seeing Deathstroke -- in all geeky wonderment.   Best yet, unlike the Smallville series, this LOOKED like Deathstroke, and he has some great fighting chops.   There are a couple great little fight scenes, nothing major, but they were done very well.    Ollie at the end taking some gunsmugglers down ... it was butt kickly good.  

Best Parts:
- All the fight scenes pretty decent.
- Ollie talking to Dinah .. some pretty good acting
- Mention of Dinah wearing Fishnet stockings one Halloween -- Geeky good
- Diggle is awesome, but I'm also enjoying Salmon's acting as Walter Steele -- I don't think he's showing up again for a bit, but I really like his character
- At the end of the show Ollie's costume, leggings and such look less black, and more green.   Nice.

Worst Parts:
- Ollie torture scene -- though it is a cool idea, I just didn't think it was played to the best by Amell.  The Director should of made Ollie look more .. tortured, exhausted.    Ok, and the wig on Ollie, not cool .. someone call make-up.    This brings up another thing, that sadly can't be fixed easily ... Ollie is FREAKING  buff, and to play the role he needs to be, but when Ollie is trying to convince his sister that he's not the Arrow in a tight sweater well it takes a better talking too than that to covince anyone (and it does look like his sister doesn't believe him at the end montage).  Its just one of those weird funny moments.  
- The music was too forced, and you see this at the end montage were I swear the music made it seem like we were watching a soap opera.    Another soap opera thing ...Walter saying good by to Moira, who is at the top of the staircase.   ugg Cheesiness

Really looking forward to next episode were Ollie doesn't just follow his 'list', but goes after criminals.  Woot.

4 Arrows out of 5

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Paper due, I'm not

Ok, I have a paper due tomorrow night, and I have NO desire whatsoever of doing it, no inclination.   Lots of procrastination though.   Instead I've tweeted, and printed up pdf rules for 2 boardgames: Conquest of Planet Earth, and The Age of Conan.   The latter I haven't tried yet, but after watching a video on Board game Geek, I think I'm set for it *chortle*.    CoPE I played for the first time on Thursday and had a great time.   Anytime you and a friend can NUKE each other, I think its a good thing.    One of the greatest things about CoPE is that you don't die, but its a continual race to get 8 'terror' points from the humans (in the 1950's btw).

I have a new roomate .. his name is TAZZ .. short for Tassimo.  Yup, did the big plunge and went into Canadian Tire, and spent my $70 in CDN TIRE money (coupons) toward it.   So, for the last two days I've been drinking coffee and lots of Hot Chocolate.   Now that I've worn in the machine, I will resume a more responsible amount of coffee and HC consumption.   I love me gadgets.

Ok, I will attempt to once more work on my paper.   Though I'm wondering if the whole thing matters, since I still haven't got the marks from my previous paper .. that was finished at the end of September.   Heck, I haven't even gotten my final marks from my course which I finished in April!!   Ah, enough ranting, time to get cracking.  

Thursday, November 1, 2012

December 4th .. Mass Effect time!!

Play the Orginal Mass Effect on December 4th on the PS3 -- I finished Mass Effect on Xbox 360 five times .. it is that good.    I have not played Mass Effect 3 yet, in anticipation of getting the collectors edition, but if you haven't yet, play Mass Effect.   It has one of the best stories of any video game.  

Halo 4 -- It does look good.

IGN posted a video review of Halo 4.    The first Halo was the reason I bought an Xbox (well that and Morrowind) and I have alot of great memories of playing that game.    I thought that by now the Halo storyline/legacy would of run dry, but I guess not.   Though I don't have a Xbox 360 (BOO you red light on death!!) this is the first game that makes me wish I had one again.    Good stuff.

Monday, October 15, 2012

X-Com and Argo

I picked up the new XCOM game for the PS3 yesterday.    The original which came out around '94 was one of my favorite games of all time.    The new incarnation has the flavor of the original that I cannot help but love it.   The whole tactical aspect is amazing, and I like making my move, and then the enemy making their move.. almost like playing a boardgame, and it really motivates me to make good tactical decisions.   All of the soldiers you can rename, and grow in their abilities, and you have a stake in these soldiers.   Needless to say .. awesome game!!

On Sunday I went and saw the movie 'Argo' based on the Iran hostage situation of the late '70's/early '80's.   I remembered this event as a kid watching the news.   The film is a great movie, that continued to draw me in and empathize with its characters.

One of the best of the year.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Arrow Thoughts

Well, I watched the new Arrow series twice, and I love it.   It's very reminiscent of Batman Begins, but its got enough to differentiate it from the Bat that it stands on its own.   It's also brought to us by the fine folks who gave us Smallville -- and even the director of the premiere ep. was the director of the first ep. of Smallville.   But this is different in feel and in intensity which is good, and hopefully as the season progresses the writing and directing will strengthen and grow.   Here's the stuff that I love about the show after its first episode:
- The 5 years Ollie spent on the Island training and fighting -- the island was not deserted, and the mystery about this island is an excellent backdrop for us to explore.   There was a cool hint of Deathstroke's mask in the opening scene, which is cool, that and there are pics roaming around on the web of him
- The Queen family history is intreguing, and really makes me as a viewer want to dive into it more.
- Cameo's already showing up.   .. Merlyn actually being the best friend of Ollie -- very cool, and a nodd to Green Arrow's sidekick -- Speedy; and even a foe that popped up .. Drakon.
- Green Arrow actor Stephen Amell is perfect for this role .. crap this guy is buff, and you can believe that he is the Arrow.   No doubt he'll be doing his own stunts.   Also, the rest of the crew are great in their roles, the cast is awesome, and it'll be cool to see what they do with their characters.

I'm very hopeful about this.   Its looks good, has lots of potential, and as Green Arrow was one of my fav heroes growing up (suction cup arrows rocked!) I'm feeling the geekness.  Missed the ep?  Check it out on

Monday, October 8, 2012

Simon Tolkien Talks ...

An interesting interview with Simon Tolkien.   I like how open he is about the influences on his own novels, and actually makes me want to read his new one coming out soon.


Turkey Got Balls

Thanksgiving and Turkey Balls go so well together.   Had an awesome day hanging out with friends playing board games, pretending to watch football, and eating copious amounts of Turkey (Balls) and Pumpkin Pie.   Nothing really gets better than that.   Board games include:  Rattus, Railroad Tycoon Europe, Pandemic, and ... something else.    Probably the highlight was Pandemic, because there's nothing like staving off a global disease with good friends.   Speaking of Pandemic, check out what happened to World of Warcraft as a hacker used an exploit and destroyed major cities.  Lots of lol, and of course Wow fixed the exploit, but still, very funny.

And for those who like to chuck their Turkeys' here's a nice link to the upcoming Walking Dead Season 2 Action Figures (by Todd McFarlane).   If you haven't seen season 2, well these figures are the 'highlight' of the zombies in this season.    Honestly the well zombie ... that was a freaky one ... remember folks, never lift a zombie out of a well with a rope, if he's been there for a few weeks!  .. this is one to grow on.   Click here for more.

Football and Videogames do mix

Sunday, October 7, 2012

No Canuck Hobbit Time

Those wanting to play Lord of the Rings Online during our Thanksgiving Holiday Monday, sorry, out of luck.     Turbine's plunking down a huge patch, not that this really matters to me, but its just one of those things companies don't look into when doing these things.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

WEEFEE (as my mother calls it)

That's WiFi for us youngsters.    Went into McDonalds for supper, it was a work thing .. really.    Anyway, do you notice that places like Tim Hortons and McDonalds advertise 'Free Wifi' throughout the restaurants, but for the most part (maybe its just me) it doesn't work right away, but seems to turn on just as you are done eatting?  No -- then tell me what the problem is; Yes?  Then join me in my confused look of ..well..confusion ... As I always have this problem with my iPhone (and before that my Blackberry).    Maybe its the reward from restaurants to their customers for actually leaving their establishments.

On another thought, should coffee shops have wifi to begin with?   I've brought my laptop to Coffee culture to check up some important sites (ie. Facebook, Boardgame geek), and I've silently pondered whether coffee shops benefit from Wifi, or if it actually keeps people from coming in because they (me) usually spread everything out on the tables so no one can come 'into my space' because all of a sudden Coffee Culture has become my own personal office?  

If I have a laptop in a coffee shop there is a certain string of thought going through my mental processes that goes something like this:  "ok now I'm almost done my coffee, should I get another one right away so that I can justify me being here?  Or should I just tap on my keyboard so that staff will think that I'm too busy for them to pay attention to and so I can sneak more time on my computer instead of feeling guilty that I'm in a shop and I'm taking up table space?    Hmm maybe I should have a donut or something, but I don't want the crumbs to gum up my keyboard, or worse, my fingers become covered in delicious sweet chocolate and then dirties my keyboard... then what?   Do I ask for a napkin, or will the employees give me dirty looks because I shouldn't stay as long as I already have?   Maybe I'll grab another coffee so I can slurp it down reeeaaalllly slow .. then it looks like I'm a customer who will leave the shop so someone can have the table I'm hogging, when I'm done my coffee but I'm a slow coffee drinker so it'll take a long time, thereby I don't have to feel the least bit guilty when people come in to find a seat but don't find one."

All of a sudden something that should be a great cozy experience becomes a rush of choices .. all because the coffee shop has wifi.  But perhaps its part of a larger picture ... perhaps its customers like me that the coffee shops want.

By offering free Wifi the resturaunt shows that they are offering something FREE, something of service to us the customers ... but this is a subcounscous ploy, in reality they don't want new people always coming in sitting down .. they need people like me, who stay for endless hours taking up table space because:
a) It means that they have to do less cleaning, because there are less customers coming and going.
b) Though people may come in, order their food and become disgruntled, in the end, they will come back because they won't blame the restaurant for the lack of seats, but the fat guy (me) who is a customer with a laptop that takes up too much space.
c) and the have a chance to make evil eyes at someone and play mindgames with that person checking boardgame geek, or at least all that said person to continue to have those said thoughts.
Want proof of this?   Remember before wifi, there were posters in Tim Hortons telling customers that they could only stay for 15-30 minutes for coffee?  Where are those signs now?    Exactly!

So Wifi is good for me, good for the stores, and good for the environment .. ok, perhaps not but it sounds good.    (ie Say anthing with 'its good for the environment' and your social standing has gone up at least 10 pts. in the eyes of someone you'll never see again)  .. So stores, please make my Wifi work on my iPhone .. helps me help you look good.   

Friday, October 5, 2012

Taken it 2 ya

So I just came back from seeing Taken 2 in theaters.  Its was awesome, with sprinkles!!   Now is it as good as the original?  Heck no, but it would be impossible since the original not only had sprinkles but it was dipped in caramel and topped with whipcream while coming with a coffee.    I love reading the reviews of this movie, and I'm trying to wonder what the critics thought that Taken 2 was going to be about.    Because the movie got slagged for it's repeat premise .. but .. its Taken 2!

Anyway, this movie had lots of great action, not enough, but it was still great.    The chemistry between Liam's character and the daughter and mother is really what keeps the movie going, and I have warm fuzzy's whenever the characters interact.  I'm a softy that way.  

What the movie is lacking is the action, while it was great, it could of been better, with more interesting fight scenes, and many times it was being cut too fast.   I want to see some awesome moves, not bumpy camera movement on the action parts.    Also, the final scene between Liam and the bad guy, whatever his name is (really .. it doesn't matter does it?) was ... weird.... I'll just say that or else I'll spoil  for ya.

Squash that Soup!!

A friend of mine from work gave me this great Butternut Squash soup recipe, and I made it!  It tastes like a sweet potato type soup, but best yet, its pretty done healthy, and all the ingredients are very much available at this time of year.
Ingredients: 3 leaks, 1 Butternut squash, 5 Granny apples, 1-2 onions, salt and pepper.  Also some Chicken boulion .. 2 cups worth.

First cut up the squash and peel it and place it in a container that has about 2 cm o' water in it, place it in the oven for an hour at 400 -- when its done, the squash should be soft.

In a separate bowl place: 5 peeled and cut up apples, 3 leaks (ONLY the white parts) cut up, and the cut up onion together.

In a pot, place 2 tbsp. o' oil, and when its hot, pour in the onion, apples, and leaks.   Put it on med, until its all soft.

When that's done, pour in the boulion and stir.

Drain the Squash, and then put that into the pot with the rest of the stuff.    Let this simmer for 10 min.  Add salt and pepper.

Then put everything in a blender/food processor until it's smooth/puraid and then place in bowls, or like I did put it all in a crock pot to let all the flavours come together.

The best part about this recipe is that its all natural, no additives, and its got a nice natural sweetness.   Should be tasty with some sandwiches.

For fun, you can try adding some parmesian cheese, or some sourcream.   

Thursday, October 4, 2012

A Thursday of No Happenstance

Ha, haven't blogged in a bit, but here's a recap of my life yesterday:
a) car backed into my car while doing my Schooling.   All is well, and not even a scratch... good stuff.
b) Found out that I can do my Schooling over my phone, through the handy new app  'GoToMeeting'.   Great stuff ... except for that whole car crash thingy.
c) Played Arkham Horror at the Giddy Goblin game shop for the first time.  Great game, and lots of nice variant through the cards.   Not into that whole horror thing, but the 1930's setting is great.
d) McDonald's Monopoly game is out woot!  .. but if you win food and stuff, you have to go into the restaurant, and can't cash in through the take-out window .. which sucks.   BTW you also have to answer a math question (answer 38) and sign away your life.    Seriously!!   Way to much work for a freebee ... like Timmies contests so much better.
e) Got home at 10:30 -- watched Iron Sky with the commentary .. really a great movie.

Updated life of Today ...
a) Finished watching Iron Sky with commentary .. still loved it.
b) Woke up with a leg cramp.. seems to happen every time I'm gaming for long periods of time at Giddy Goblin ... must be the seats.   Gotta remember to stand more often.
c) Went to Tim Hortons, and enjoyed the new Pumpkin Spice Muffin .. so crazy good.
d) Watched a new Geek and Sundry video on Pandemic.   So love that game.
e) ... CRAP CRAP CRAP >>@.@  I picked up the Wow Pandaran expansion... crazy stupid .. but ... I like Pandas .. is that so wrong?!?!   Crazy it is!!  But its ... pandas ... how can .. I not play?!?!

Ah such is life.   Time to go.. its PANDA TIME!!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Back... and stranger than ever ;)

Gotta blog more, I know.. and I will.    For finding freaky stuff on the internet, here's a D&D based band that has a crazy funny video.  Only reason I'm showing it here.    Very funny ..

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Back to Scifi ...

I got back a bit into Star Trek Online, partly because of Jupiter Broadcasting, and because it is such a great game.    People griped when STO was released with bugs, but I understand why Cryptic did it ... because if they didn't they would of lost the license.   If you have a IP like Star Trek, you hold on to it until your hands bleed, and even then you have teeth!!   But the game has come a long way, and it keeps drawing me back, and everytime I do, things have changed for the better.    The best thing I guess, is that it's now free-to-play.    I have a lifetime sub, so it was sort of meh, but its a great thing if your a star trek fan and have been waiting to get into SOMETHING star trek that doesn't cost a cent.

The BEST thing about this game, besides being star trek, is that it has a 'foundry' ... stories based on what the players themselves have made.   There's a rating system for each player made mission.    If you want to stay away from craptacular episodes... Check out Jupiter Broadcasting's SToked for the best of the best.

Also of not.. Cryptic is making more 'episodic' content starting in February ... Which is always good.   Why?  Because they are memorable, and well done.   You also get some great rewards!   Also, for the next few weeks, Q is out and about because its the games 2 year anniversary.   Huzzah.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

DC vs. Marvel

The debate continues for fandom.   For me though its DC.   Why?    Lynda Carter as Wonder Woman .. well, and all of the nifty animated movies, shows, and trade paper backs.    But I think its because I never grew up on it.   Sure I had the Superman vs. Muhammad Ali book, which is my favorite piece of all (Neal Adams artwork ... seriously amazing) .. but I was a Marvel man until the 2000's.   First comics I had as a kid was Fantastic four, and Captain America, and tons of Spiderman, as I said, early Marvel boy. The few DC comics I owned (besides the aformentioned) were few, but stood apart. Sgt. Rock, a Brave and a Bold with Batman finding .. Hitler?? yup, and Aquaman.  Yea, laugh it up, but that Aquaman comic, and I have no recollection of who did the artwork or who wrote it, was good.  Really.   What brought me to the DC line though was when I started collecting heroclix.   Not only playing this minature table top game with Marvel characters was awesome, but when I opened up a box of DC characters I'm like ..... who is this character?   Who is this villain?   It was like unlocking a treasure trove of secrets, of unearthing a tomb of lost gold.   Ok, maybe that's a little over dramatic.   But the fact is, is that DC had tons of characters that I had no idea who they were, and that was attractive to me.

But now thanks to the plethora of DC animated shows, and animated movies, and my lack of funds and room for Marvel ... well, DC's grown closer to my heart.   They may not be the best out there, but for me, its the most accessable.   And then there's Linda Carter.

The blinds aren't on all the time though, DC has screwed up, most importantly with the lack of communication with WB .. Batman excluded ... seriously a decent hero movie, that's all I ask.   They also push the boundaries a bit too far with its violence, not restricted to just their vertigo titles.   I remember when I was in college and this character called 'Lobo' came on the scene .. back then everything was all about keeping things gritty .. and I collected all of Lobo that I could.   Inter-galactic hitman.   One night I just took it all to a trash bin, and got rid of the whole lot.    Comics are great, but if anything brings you down in your walk with God, trash it.   Always a good motto to live by.

For those of you (and you know who you are) that has claimed that Marvel constantly outsells DC -- which is fine .. really .. I do like Marvel, it is my first comic book love ... but I do have to point to THIS site which has the sales figures for the company's.     Pretty close eh?  And notice that titles like Green Lantern and Justice League are up there, and the Flash .. Not JUST batman ;)   Love ya bro, you know who you are!!   

As much as a newer fan of DC I am, they have tons of stinker titles.   I have 10 really long boxes filled with them downstairs (my pastor's) that I have barely touched.    I'm talking the beginings of the Justice league, and Superman, and all that.   The only ones worth grabbing and reading were ones done by artist/writer John Byrne, or comics starting around the death of Superman.   Strangley or not, THAT is when I can be a DC fan.    Why?  Because they read like Marvel comics.   Go figure.

Now to watch The Tick.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

SWOTOR a Month later..

... and I've come to the conclusion that the game is not done yet.   Not that Star Wars the Old Republic MMO is not good, but there are so many things missing and so many bugs, that another month in the perverbrial oven wouldn't hurt.   What Bioware does in the next 2 months is going to be patching up a storm, while bringing out more missions to appeal to the players which is good, but somehow I think the sense of community will be lost.   Before I go on, let me introduce you to some pics of a bugged bounty hunter mission to illustrate some of my problems.

*Spoiler alert*

1) a video bug, my character will have a green glow on her, even when my healer is not healing her.  Really annoying, and it lasts until you reboot.   Then it may return.   Really annoying when your getting into the 'rpg mood'.

2) a beam of green light, from nowhere followed my character for the entire mission.   You think this is because of lag?   Well, I've still got 3 full bars of connectivity (check it out on left bottom side of minimap)

3) Here I'm fighting a guy, notice the red words above my character 'Cannot see Target'  ... again, I'm not lagging, this is me not able to fire my gun because apparently I cannot see the target .. which is right .. in ..front.. of .. me!

 These things happened throughout the mission.   Now, if it were an ordinary mission, perhaps I'd just be a little perturbed.   But this was a mission that was a MAJOR part of my Bounty Hunter's life.   This was  a mission to make me a full fledged Mandalorian Bounty Hunter.   Class epic quest.

Now this game is amazing, and the storylines are awesome, but one of the reasons that I pick up Bioware games, is to step into the shoes of amazing characters, and things like this take me out of the game.   For me, this is a big thing.  

Also missing is: -- a looking for group channel,  character customatization (dye system), a chance to even write a bio for your character ala. city of heroes, star trek online, lotro, champions etc., a chance to CHOOSE which pvp arena you want to go too; a loot system choice better than need/greed. has a great article on this now.

Oh, btw, weather effects are important for us visual hogs in 2012.  How about we have some.

This game has alot of good stuff, and the conversations, crafting, and the idea of having companions sets it above and beyond most games out there in mmo land.   But I think what hits me is that they (Bioware) compromised the debugging process to get the game out there before Christmas.   I guess EA wanted the game out there this year, but I do think it hurt more than helped. 

I would give Swotor 8.5/10.   It is still an amazing mmo, just not a perfect one.   Not yet.    For the last month I have given this game way more time than any other in the last few years.   I love my bounty hunter, and my companions.. some great storytelling that drew me in.   Will I subscribe to it?  Not sure but I will definately revisit it.

=========>>>> Shelob .. my bounty hunter