December 30, 2009

PC Gamers should love Steam right now

First of all, I hope everyone's holidays were friggin' stellar.  I know mine was.  More on nerd loot at a later date.

Have any of you PC game lovers been on Steam recently?  If you don't know what that is, check it out here.  Anyway, from before the holidays through January 3rd they are having some fantastic deals on PC games if you don't mind not having the box to go with the game.  Personally I prefer digital downloads but that's another topic for another day, one that I'm sure The Boyfriend would be more knowledgeable about.

When I say deals, I do mean deals.  And these deals will change every 24 hours so there's no telling what you can get on the cheap when.  For example, over the last week I've observed and/or purchased:

Bioshock for $5
Left 4 Dead for $7.50
Audiosurf for $2.50
All Unreal Tournament Games in a package for $14
Civilization IV for $6.80

I don't want to make the list too long, but you get the point.  If you are jonesing for some good games that for some reason you didn't get over the holidays, check steam.

On that note, I'm going to play on my gaming computer.  :D

December 23, 2009

How I Found Out About the Krampus Last Year

Once again I hope you all aren't visited by that beast. However, I really didn't know about him until last year, after this christmas episode:

If you haven't seen the Venture Bros. before, you can thank me later.  Watch the full special here.

December 16, 2009

My Gaming PC: am I a traitor?.

I've been meaning to post about my new gaming PC, which I named Adonis.  I had a chance to buy all the parts cheap on Newegg, and since the Boyfriend loves to build computers, I got it put together for practically free.

That's part of the reason I've been playing Dragon Age exponentially.  And next Mass Effect!  WOO!

But in some ways, I feel like I am betraying my roots.  I was raised a console gamer.  Started out with a Super NES and I didn't really start getting into it until I got older.  I've always loved video games, but I never really considered myself a "gamer" in that regard.  Sims 2 was really the most hardcore I went.  Everything else I played but never finished.  Spyro, Super Mario 64, Yoshi's Island, Dark Cloud...  Never finished any of them.

I was always around people who loved video games, and I could see why people loved them too.  It wasn't until college I got into games for real.  I got a first generation Nintendo DS and it was awesome.  I played it to escape from my first summer job in the evenings.  Kirby Canvas Curse is the first game I got for myself and actually finished.  Or at least that I can remember.

And from then on I was hooked.  I loved gaming and would play or watch as much as I could.  I made a friend in college that would play JRPGs and I would watch all the time.   Soul Caliber battles were awesome.  And I was seeking out stuff to play.  But it was always on a console.  I didn't even consider PC games.  Partly because my main computer was a mac and partly because I grew up with consoles.

Within a year I've totally converted.  I prefer the input with a keyboard and mouse.  Point and click!  No double joysticks to deal with!  I don't want to operate the camera and the character at the same time like that!  And if you don't like how it looks or operates, you upgrade it yourself!

I think I was officially sold when one of my friends let me try out Prototype on his beast of a laptop.  It was so fluid!  It made perfect sense!  Who knew I could be this good at video games?!

I think that when I knew I needed a gaming PC.  There are a lot of video games these days that revolve around really good stories.  Dragon Age is one of them, but let us not forget other games I wanted to play and never really got around to like BioShock and Fallout 3.  And with Mass Effect I didn't actually play.  Instead I did all the character choices while the Boyfriend was nice enough to do all the shoot.  Well now I can do my own shooting!  WOOT!  And I'll actually hit!  YEAH!

Though... I'm still playing on easy...

Anyway, I don't know if I am actually abandoning what originally brought me to gaming.  I still love my Wii, and the games that are on it.  And console games are a lot more social.  But a lot of the games I want to play are like reading long books.  They have unique stories, and the best way for me to play through without dying all the time is on a PC.  I guess it's just me adapting to the changes in the gaming world.

December 14, 2009

Why I Have Crushes on Fictional Characters

FYI:  This post is spoiler free.  Please keep the comments that way too since I and a good chunk of my readers haven't finished the game.

Alright, in my last post were I apologized for not writing in ages, I admitted something embarrassing.  I'm not sure if all  of you thought it was true, but I know some of you knew it had to be.  And to be honest, I have no problem just saying it out in the middle of the internet.

I have a crush on this guy:

Handsome, no?

Don't worry, I'm not going to be like the girl who dumped her boyfriend because he wasn't like Edward in Twilight.  My expectations are realistic.  I know I'm never getting with this piece of pixelated ass or anyone even close to my expectation of who he really is.  Also, having a boyfriend in real life is a lot healthier.  Sorry, Alistar.

My and my nerd gal pals do this all the time though!  I was writing horrible fan fiction about Chekov from the original Star Trek in junior high!  In fact we all wrote horrible fan fiction about our heart throbs, whether from Star Trek, Pirates of the Carribean, heck even Digimon! Uh, p.s. the digimon is not even me.

But why do us nerd girls even do this?  Why don't we lust over guys that really exist?  I remember it being a lot more normal in jr. high and high school to like an actor, like Josh Hartnett or one of the Backstreet Boys.  But throughout that time I would long for other guys.  There was Checkov, Johnny Depp's Ichabod Crane, John the Savage from when I read Brave New World... list goes on.  And it's not like I didn't have boyfriends all throughout that time.  But I was attracted to all these guys that were not real, and didn't think they'd ever be real.

The question is why would I do this in the first place?  Not like I was ever going to be fully satisfied with these romantics interests, right?

I'll let you in on a secret: these crushes are safe.  S-A-F-E.

Think about it.  All you know about the character is right in front of you.  There are no hidden secrets you need to find out (Dragon age is an exception, but not by much) and it is so much easier to focus on all the positives of that character.  Seriously, right now in game I can just make out with Alistar as much as I want when I am in camp.  And if I was really sick, I could replay all those moments when Alistar says silly bumbling things about being in love with my character. (BTW I'm not that sick)  He's available for everything good you want in a relationship, and barely available for everything bad you have in a relationship.

This is especially true for a lot of my other past crushes.  I had just enough information to be "yeah, this is guy is nice/romantic/endearing/just my type, and I'm sure if we met we'd hit it off"and then just roll with it in my own head.  The guy is never going to approach me, never going to reveal himself to have a secret which I couldn't live with, never going to have to move in with me and split rent and utilities... and he's available to you all the time if your imagination is good enough!  If not, watch the movie/play the game/read the book over and relive all the moments that make you heart go a flutter!

Also, fans who have crushes on characters can easily shape some of the character to fit their romantic liking.  "Uh... sure he likes brunettes.  He does in my head at least!"

In a way this is extremely normal.  Everyone in their head has an idea of who their perfect man/woman would be.  A lot of the time people have a problem projecting their current love interest to be that person, or needs to change to be that person.  In this situation, that projecting doesn't cause fights, misunderstandings, and even break ups.  It's just molding something that already isn't there into your liking.

I have never gone too far with this stuff though.  I have never thought that The Boyfriend should suddenly act like Alistar, or start looking like him.  When I was younger I never though "I should have a boyfriend who is just like John the Savage" or anything remotely like that.  Never even compared my real life crushes to my fictional ones.  That's when it just gets weird.  More than weird.   I have never actively sought that out.  I have known of people who do, and it just ends in tragedy.

I will continue to have my crush on Alistar for a while, I'm sure.  The Boyfriend doesn't feel threatened, since when he's around I shower him in kisses and snuggles.  That's something I'm not doing to my computer monitor.

Also, I wouldn't be surprised that this is only because he's a romance-able character.  Those developers definitely know what their doing.

December 13, 2009

Real Life is the Enemy!

So it's been almost a year a blog, if not an actual year, and I find that my work schedule the past week or so prevented me from doing things I enjoy, including this awesome blog.  Other things being kept from me while I'm being an adult:

-Starting that UA game
-Writing for the comic
-Not falling asleep when my boyfriend visits me.
-My LARP and all the cool friends I've made there
-The Paranoia Game I'm playing on Wave
-Seeing my family when I'm not tired and irritated

So it's not just you guys, it's everything.  The only joy I've consistently gotten the last couple of days is about an hour of Dragon Age each night before going to sleep and dreaming of either the Boyfriend or Alistar from the game.  Don't worry, the Boyfriend automatically wins because he actually exists.  And he built me a computer.  :D

I am trying to aim for posting in this every day with something awesome from now on.  I love writing and I haven't been doing enough of it recently.  That's part of the reason this blog exists.  I'm not going to abandon it merely because my job is giving me double the hours this weekend and next.  I will prevail!

Expect some more awesome soon.

December 4, 2009

Christmas Gift: Stories!

So I figured out the best christmas gift to give to my friends while I am financially... unable to purchase things for everyone I love: a story about them.

I'm not saying my stories are the best, but I do consider myself a good writer.  I can write something interesting and readable (if you discount my first drafts with grammar problems up the wazoo) and people tend to geniunely enjoy what I write.  I'm thinking that's the way to go.

Usually when somebody does a gift that is hand made, it's a bit more useful than a story.  Like a knit sweater or a built spice rack.  I just hope the friends I give these stories to appreciate them.  I'm going to try and cater to their personalities too.

Oh, and if you're a friend of mine reading this, pretend you didn't.