Posts Tagged ‘Photos’

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Pic Of The Day

July 26, 2012

I’ve been continuing to make my way through The Secret World and am currently now in Egypt, where I’m getting some major Indiana Jones vibes. Funcom, all I have to say is…I approve.

For the last couple of days questing in the Scorched Desert, I found that the main story missions have suddenly taken a turn for the more puzzle-ly. These are just a fraction of my lulz-inducing notes from a string of mind-benders last night:

By the way, you know how we’re always poo-pooing over “kill ten rats” quests? They’re not always so bad. It just made me smile to myself a little, because you have NO IDEA how nice and refreshing it was to finally give my brain a rest and let loose during a “kill X ghouls” mission after all of that.

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Pic: May The Fur Be With You

December 17, 2011

While I was plundering the treasures of our Star Wars: The Old Republic Collector’s Edition yesterday, one of my dogs seemed to have developed a sudden and unhealthy crush on the Darth Malgus statue.

Did I say crush? I actually meant to say she was utterly, obsessively, inexplicably transfixed with the dark lord of the Sith. Honey, either our statue was dipped in meat sauce at the factory, or I think Mara might be evil.

P.S. – It’s appropriate, I guess, that she was named after Mara Jade.

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Review: The Art And Making Of Star Wars: The Old Republic

November 10, 2011

Cover

Due to professional interest, but also thanks to my general love for art, I’m always on the lookout for artbooks. They’re good for reference or just ordinary perusal on a rainy day, and I collect just about anything and everything that catches my eye.

Several of my shelves, however, are especially dedicated to the realms of fantasy and sci-fi. Over the years, I’ve amassed artbooks featuring masterpieces by the greats such as Frank Frazetta or Brom, but also gaming-related books containing graphics and concept art from games like Guild Wars, World of Warcraft, Assassin’s Creed, Mass Effect, etc.

Today, I want to give some love to The Art and Making of Star Wars: The Old Republic, which I was ecstatic to add to my collection this week. Remember, I was initially disappointed that no artbook was included in the retail collector’s edition of the game, but now that I am holding this gem in my hands, I am beginning to understand why. The Art and Making of SWTOR is a masterpiece in and of itself. It’s a hefty hardcover of good quality, filled with full-colored images of digital pictures and concept art, and pages and pages of commentary to go with it.

Topics covered include the things you’d expect: class design, planets and environments, species, creatures, ships, weapons, armor, etc., etc., etc. But since this is technically a “Making Of” book as well, you also get developer insights into the creation of the game, everything from commentary on SWTOR’s evolution from its roots in Knight of the Old Republic, to the multitude of challenges BioWare faced when moving into the MMO space.

There are also other interesting tidbits on the game’s development, random facts about the game I picked up as I read through the pages. One of my favorites is the section at the back, called “Verbal Cubism”. Did you know that beyond the main dialogue, thirty-thousand lines of alien-speak were recorded for SWTOR? The book states: “To put this in perspective, [that's] more than the entire script for Mass Effect or both KOTOR games combined. Just in aliens.” Pretty neat.

If you 1) have a general interest in game art and concept art, or 2) are a big fan of SWTOR, then this book is definitely worth it. Since both those descriptions apply to me, I must say I am quite pleased. I’ve been flipping through the pages admiring the beautiful pieces in there since I got it. I wish I could showcase them all, but there are just too many. Here are, however, some of the highlights and my favorites:

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3DS Adventures: PUPPY SHENANIGANS!!!

August 17, 2011

No surprise here, but I purchased myself a Nintendo 3DS last weekend when the $80 price drop went into effect and also picked up a few games, including The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. So far, I’m loving my new little gadget. So much of it is gimmicky, but screw it, I’m enjoying it all while it lasts.

And speaking of enjoying something while it lasts, I also picked up Nintendogs + Cats.

Let me just make something clear: I already have two dogs — that is, two real dogs, a couple of adorable Cavalier King Charles spaniels that I just love to death so you can say I’m already quite well acquainted with all the joys of dog ownership. I don’t really need a pet simulator any more than I need an instruction manual on how to put on my socks, so then why am I so in love with this freakin’ idiotic game!?!?

Well, it definitely has its charm in the short-term and in time may feel like a glorified 3DS tech demo, but for now I’m completely taken with my Nintendog (a Cav, of course; as if there was any other choice for me). The game’s certainly good at igniting my inner 10-year-old, and of course, there’s that word again — gimmicky. Maybe I’ve had my head in the sand, but one thing I had absolutely no idea about and was delighted to learn was the 3DS’ use of Augmented Reality cards, so I wasted no time whipping out the AR camera and putting my Nintendog in all sorts of precarious situations.

Watching my puppy chase his tail around in circles on my desk in eye-popping 3D is not only super trippy but also evidently a great way to waste half the morning.

I am a sad panda because the cool 3D effect doesn’t show up in pictures.

Waiter, this is unacceptable! There’s a Kirby in my cup! And he just crapped out a puppy!

In a Luigi hat, d’awwwwwwwwwww…

My other (real) dog Mara is the prissy one who would have chewed up the AR card before putting up with any of my crap, whereas Strider (the real dog in the above photo) is the smart one who knows as long as he shuts up and stays still, the faster he’ll get things over with and the sooner his crazy lady owner will leave him the hell alone. Which is probably exactly what he was thinking when I took that picture.

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Playing Catch Up

August 22, 2010

There has been a lack of regular updates as of late, since the puppy has been making it extremely difficult for me to get anything done. His royal majesty the Heir of Gondor craps and pees like every hour, sleeps for only short periods at a time, and likes to wander everywhere when he’s awake and do things like steal my socks and panties from the hamper and eat anything he can sink his teeth into — lint, acorns, wood chips, shoelaces, you name it. Yesterday the little devil even managed to grab hold of a band-aid I had on my hand, tore it off and tried to make off with it. Ewwwww.

But then he can also be oh sooo adorable.

Mr. Tiger has since been redubbed Mr. Maimed Tiger. Approximately 8 hours after this photo was taken, puppy bit off his right arm.

Okay, enough with the cute. Hopefully Strider will gain more control over his bladder over the next couple of weeks and I’ll be to catch up on some gaming:

  • Star Trek Online — I still have my sights on making Vice Admiral and dammit, I’m not going to rest until I grind enough non-combat exploration missions for the last 60 diplomatic experience points needed for T’Androma to make the rank of AttachĂ©. It is my understanding that after that, things will finally get somewhere.
  • Three weeks later, the new computer is finally loaded up with most of my MMOs (I told you our internet is slow) and both Lord of the Rings Online and Age of Conan are looking gorgeous using DX10 with all the video settings turned all the way up.
  • World of Warcraft is the only game I’ve been playing with any consistency lately, but usually late at night and only because my husband the big WoW nerd insists on it. The Terrific Tauren Two are almost ready for Northrend.
  • I still need to install the Guild Wars trilogy, because my Twitter feed has been filled with people talking about it lately, and I’m getting the hankering to fire up the Nightfall campaign.
  • Tonight, I also started downloading the EverQuest II Extended client. I have no idea when I’m going to find time to play all this, but what I do know is that I can’t argue with free.

Have a nice rest of the weekend!

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The New Set Up

August 2, 2010

Here you go. As you can see, nothing fancy like those gaming rigs with six screens or anything like that, but it’s a huge upgrade from my Dell XPS laptop. People are right; after sitting behind that 24″ monitor, I don’t think I can ever go back to laptop gaming.

My husband doesn’t have a spare desk and the study is currently taken up by boxes and boxes of his books and electronics, so there’s not and inch of room in there. Hence my computer is currently set up on a tiny old writing table in his work out room, sandwiched between his elliptical trainer and the weight bench. This house is pretty much one big man cave and clearly I’m still trying to work on fitting my life into his, but this is great for now. Guess what, if I want to tone a few muscles between raids, the home gym is just right behind me.

Intel Core i7-920 processor, 12GB RAM, Radeon HD 5770…I’m guessing these are some of the specs people will be interested to know. My knowledge in computers and technology is adequate but not extensive (hubby’s the IT expert in the family) especially when it comes to the internal workings of the machine. I nearly had a heart attack when the computer booted up and did not recognize the hard drive, but it just turned out it had to be screwed in tighter. Beside the monitor is my precious 12WX Wacom Cintiq, the tablet/screen hybrid that I use to “draw”.

And as you can see from the above photo, I’m currently downloading the high-res version of Lord of the Rings Online. Because of my better half’s ISP, this 10GB download has so far taken around 3 days of downloading at an average of 120KBps. For a guy who’s an avid gamer, always interested in the latest gadgets and who works in the tech industry, it boggles my mind how he could stand to live at such speeds (it’s so frustrating that it’s become a running joke in our household to liken each other to our internet when someone is being sluggish). Now that there are two people sharing the service, we may have to look into making a switch. Not looking forward to downloading the Age of Conan client before that happens!

So far, I’m very pleased with how graphics look on this machine. On the gaming front, the two games I’ve tested so far are World of Warcraft and Star Trek Online because I have the retail boxes. The latter looks simply amazing — I for one never knew explosions in space could look so glorious.

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The New SW:TOR Timeline – Cliffs Notes Version

April 16, 2010

I’ve become somewhat accustomed to writing about the Star Wars: The Old Republic Friday Updates every week, so I’m not going to stop now even though the update happens to be a new holonet timeline (as usual narrated by the very talented Lance Henriksen). I know most people don’t typically find timelines to be too interesting, but those who are familiar with Star Wars lore or are into the stories behind the upcoming game will find plenty of information hidden in this new entry.

As always, the lesson here is that the Republic and the Jedi Council are brainless idiots who have never heard of a simple thing called a background check. Seriously, they appear to have more moles than CTU has had in all eight seasons of 24.

Other things I got from the timeline video:

1. Yavin 4 may be a future planet (surely, you didn’t think Bioware was done with revealing planets?)

2. The mysterious Sith Emperor is NOT Naga Sadow.

3. That is indeed a Star Forge at the end there, Knights of the Old Republic fans.

Anyway, thanks for letting me indulge in my weekly Star Wars fix. Now join me in a little head-bobbing as I share with you all a picture of something I received earlier this week, as a belated birthday gift.

Ah, yes…happiness is a Star Wars “Boba”-head.

Yar, I know I have a dusty shelf. But it'll have to do, until I find a proper home for him, like on an office desk or a dashboard or something.

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