Thursday, September 11, 2008

Expansion Apathy

I've been playing World of Warcraft [WoW] on and off for a couple years now. I go through periods of manic addiction, where I play for hours a day. Then after a while I get a little tired of the game, and maybe log in for half an hour, maybe an hour a day, there are some times where I don't log on for a day or two. I've also had periods where for one reason or another I've quit for a couple months at a time, only to be dragged back in due to boredom, or the expansion.

I find myself in a bit of the drag ass mood lately when it comes to WoW, like many people. I don't really see the point in raiding anymore, unless it's just to see the content, and unfortunately, my guild isn't large enough to do 25 mans with any regularity. So if I'm on, I'm farming for tradeskill materials to sell, or I'm leveling an alt through content I've seen a dozen times before.

The decision to keep my account active or to just suspend it until the expansion (Wrath of the Lich King) comes out is on my mind quite a bit lately. I use the game right now just to stay in touch with people at this point, but I can also use e-mail and AIM for that.

In the end I'll probaly keep the account active, just so I have something to do if I get bored and I want to fill my free time with something other than TV or novel. I'm sure there are plenty of people out there having the same problem. Any advice?


Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Secret Invasion!

Alrighty folks this time I will be discussing Marvel’s current company spanning mega event, the Secret Invasion! I’ve had a lot of discussions with friends, co-workers and customers, so all these awesome ideas and thoughts aren’t necessarily my own original brain activity.


If you haven’t read the secret invasion yet, and you hate spoilers, I suggest you don’t continue reading my awesome blog.
I’ll start out with the several things I dislike about the Secret Invasion. First of all, I’m getting a little tired of these huge company wide, universe shattering events. It started with the House of M, then Civil War, and most recently, World War Hulk. Both House of M, and Civil War were awesome, they were interesting, original ideas (well, as original as any story can be nowadays) that actually changed the Marvel universe. I could have honestly done without World War Hulk, it was just a venue to show just how crazy badass the Hulk is, and since I’m not a big fan of the Hulk, well, I don’t need to read about how awesome he is. Add to that, the World War Hulk didn’t change a damn thing, he came in, smashed some stuff, and then got punch so hard by the batshit crazy Sentry, that he turned back into Banner, big whoop. (Please all you Hulk fans, remember, this is my personal opinion, nothing more and, if you want to bitch at me about how awesome the Hulk is, just remember, I may not care.)

My second issue with the Secret Invasion is the fact that really, nothing has happened yet. It’s half over already, and the only thing to change, was the resurrection of Mockingbird, which they then showed was all bullshit anyway as she was a skrull, and Hawkeye had to kill her. Yes, Nick Fury is back, (which I’ll talk about later) which is awesome, but we all knew he was coming back. Yes, the entire world is being taken over by Skrulls, but so far, nothing has changed; except for in one book, Captain Britain and the MI13. I was totally taken by surprise by that book, it’s amazingly awesome, and if you haven’t read it yet, please do so. (I won’t reveal any of the awesomeness, in case you folks haven’t read it, but trust me, it’s really good)

As a whole, even with the issues I stated above, I have been enjoying the secret invasion, there’s a lot of action, one of my favorite characters ever, Nick Fury has made a triumphant return. He bursts in on the action in New York with a huge fucking gun, and his “Commandos” a group of superhero heirs and misfits he collected to combat the invasion. I’ve always enjoyed the skrulls, even though they’re more often than not portrayed as almost a joke. They’re finally being shown as total the total badass aliens I knew they could be. Even though some of the “super skrull” soldiers look a little silly with certain combinations of powers, as a whole, I’m impresses at how they’re portraying the invasion force.

I’ve never been a huge fan of Lienil Yu, the artist in charge of the Secret Invasion main title. I have to say though, I am really enjoying his style in this book. It may be because his inker and colorist are doing wonderful things to make his art look clean and not so rough and sketchy.

Ok, I’m going to cut this off before I make anyone’s eyes bleed because of the wall of text. I just want to close this by saying that even though I have several issues with the series, I am really enjoying the Secret Invasion so far, and I am looking forward to see where it goes. I’ll write another blog when it’s all done to give you my full assessment of the series. Thanks again for slogging through my huge wall of text, and if you have any suggestions on how I can be a better blogger, please feel free to write me scathing comments! Have a good one!


Sunday, August 31, 2008

Roll for Initiative!

My first topic will be Dungeons & Dragons. For those of you who don’t know what Dungeons & Dragons is [I’ll be referring to it as D&D from now on], well you aren’t nearly geeky enough to be reading this blog. If you’re really interested in learning, well, Wikipedia is an excellent online resource. Go look it up, and come back if you’re still interested in what I have to say.

I have a tremendous amount of love and affection for this tabletop role playing game. It’s a perfect outlet for my creativity, and it lets me play the role of a hero in a world filled with monsters.

My favorite part of the game though is the social aspect, I love nothing more than getting together with a bunch of friends and just hanging out. Playing D&D gives me the chance to hang out with some bad ass folks, and roll some dice while I’m at it.

Recently, I’ve been taking on the role of Dungeon Master [DM] more often. This role tends to work really well for me, because I have a terrible habit of getting bored very quickly with my current character and wanting to move on to something new. Being the DM allows me to play the role of several different monsters and enemies in one session, it doesn’t allow me to get bored.

Recently, Wizards of the Coast, the current publisher and owner of the D&D brand ; put out a brand new edition of my favorite game; Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition. Prior to its release, I heard a lot of different opinions about the product, which is fucking insane because it hadn’t even come out yet!

Every Tom, Dick, and Harry asshole I talked to had a “friend” who was a play tester who just had horror stories about the new addition. Giving me a fucking break, if you haven’t played it yourself shut your damn mouth. I always try to give people and the benefit of the doubt, and Wizards really haven’t fucked D&D up yet, so I was confident the new edition would be at least playable.

I’ve played a couple sessions of the new edition, and I’ve read the Player’s Handbook [PHB}, Dungeon Master’s Guide [DMG] and Monster Manual [MM] cover to cover. Not only did wizards not fuck their shit up, they made the game a hell of a lot better.

They made it quite a bit easier for new people to join the game. The skill system has been condensed and simplified, without losing too much versatility. The spell lists are quite a bit easier to understand, and not so damn text heavy. The combat system has had a lot of it’s more difficult to implement rules such as grappling simplified, or taken out altogether (which isn’t a bad thing).

My favorite part of the new system, is that every single class has an enormous list of attacks, powers and special abilities they can choose from. In earlier editions, classes like the fighter, and rogue spent every single one of their rounds simply swinging a sword or stabbing with their dagger. One of my favorite classes, the cleric, was usually forced to be the “healing battery” for the group spending all their time casting “cure light wounds”. Typically from a wand aka “click stick”. That’s all over my friends, with powers like healing strike which allows you to attack an enemy, and heal an ally all in the same action!

I’ve heard many people complain that they hate the fact that they’ve lost the ability to make their characters a lot more customized than they’re used to. Which in all honesty, is true, but that’s because there are only three books out so far. 3.5 has dozens of tomes out that give you countless options for your character. I have faith that the volumes that are to come will have many different options to customize your character however the hell you want.

Ok, I’m going to end this before it gets too fucking long (a little late yes?). I just want to leave you with one last thought. If you hear someone complaining about a new movie, book, gaming system, whatever, and they haven’t seen it, read it, or played it, do me a favor, walk over to them, slap them in the back of the head and tell them to shut the fuck up about shit they don’t know about, thanks.

Thanks for reading!


P.S. If you haven’t played D&D yet, please give it a shot, I promise you won’t be disappointed, it’s a hell of a lot of fun to get together with some friends, roll some dice and fuck up some goblins.

(Dedicated to the late great Gary Gygax, father of all RPGs, keep rolling those dice!)

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Introductions...and a bit of a rant.

How's it goin there folks. I appreciate you takin the time to check out my little slice o' geek heaven here. The point of this blog is for me to share my thoughts on 'geek culture' so to speak.

Being a geek doesn't carry the stigma it once did, but I still see quite a few people hiding the fact that they're into what many consider geeky activities.

I've talked to people that have two separate sets of friends, one set is their "normal" friends, who they'll go to the bar with, watch sports (which to be honest, plenty of geeks do) etc.. Then, they'll have a whole second group of friends who they do their nerdy activities with, and those two groups will never meet. In fact, the person in question, dosen't want his two groups to ever meet, because he dosen't want to be branded as a nerd.

A couple good friends of mine have made the comment, that they won't let a girl they're dating know about their comic collection, or their bag o' dice, or their WoW account for weeks, or even months after they've been together.

I find both of these things to be complete and utter bull shit. I'm not saying to go around announcing to the world that you're a huge geek, waving a banner, or whatever. Just don't hide who you are! If you have friends that would make fun of you, or would stop hanging out with you because you play D&D, or you own a signed photograph of Captain James T. Kirk; are those really the kind of people you want to associate yourself with anyway?

If you let a girl (or guy) know that you spend your nights after work slaying demons in Outlands with 24 of your guild mates, and he or she refuses to go out with you because of that, well, he/she is a pretty shallow person, and they would probably leave you sooner or later anyway, especially when they found your For The Horde! T-Shirt.

All I'm saying, is be proud of who you are, and embrace your geekiness, don't hide from it.

Anyway, enough of my introduction rant, cya later folks!