Casual

The Grove at World’s End

Leonard Nimoy died on the weekend. I have fond memories of his art through TV, Movies, and games and many others have and will memorialize him much better than I ever could. I read his last tweet as I was following his passing and I found it absolutely beautiful – words to remember, and that is what I want to share here.

I have been really nostalgic this week. On one hand I have the realization that for all intensive purposes my life is half over – and that doesn’t make me sombre by any means – I have lived quite the life and am good at the fact that I probably have a good chunk more to. I start everyday with a smile, satisfied with the life I have lived and just try to be nice to people in general. You don’t have to wear a cape to be somebody’s hero, after all. Still, in moments of reflection and “why nots” coupled with my trip down nostalgia lane, sprinkled with Mr. Nimoy’s quote has me thinking.

I’m going to try and get the band back together. Figuratively, of course. We weren’t a band, but a guild. And by back together, I mean going to try and get people to log in for an evening to just say hi and catch up. Even for just one night. With EQ being free and the Testserver still alive and well that isn’t the hurdle – the hurdle is tracking everyone down. I have some emails, I have some last known whereabouts. I have friends of friends. I have the internet. The funny thing is I don’t even know if anyone cares but the guild is actually still in tact and it even has login dates and whatnot in the guild management window in game (patched, back in on the weekend). There is a setting for this.

The World’s End was a funny movie about a washed up guy that has been trying to get his old crew together years later to finish a pub crawl. I wish this event had this sort of ambition, but really, it doesn’t. It is just to get a bunch of people who were friend’s and guild mates at one point into an old game we used to enjoy. Some may not like the idea but at the end of it all, why not? It definitely won’t hurt anyone and at bare minimum if a handful show up and have fun then that is enough for me. I can relate to Gary King on everything except the washed up part *cough cough*.

While there is a setting I don’t have any sort of purpose or activity yet. The main goal at this point is to drive people to the old message boards. Find them, and get them in one place. Once we have a captive audience we’ll try to organize from there.

I already reached out to an old guild mate  based off an entirely old email I came across and got a positive response. The most fun part is that our boards are still up so we have a natural meeting place. Wish me luck, I’ll need it! I’m sure I’ll update here now and again on how it is going – if it goes at all. If you happen to know anyone who spent time on the EQ Testserver at EQ launch until early 2000s I’d appreciate it if you passed along this adventure – who knows, maybe they will know someone who was a part of The Grove at the time (or Primal Brood, which ended up taking on a good chunk of our members to take them raiding). It was a small enough community that there is a good chance they will know someone from The Grove at some point. Whether or not they can feed them to the board is a whole other challenge.

The link to our boards is here. There is a post in General about getting together. Anything anyone can do to help, it’s appreciated. We also aren’t against a time constraint either, so would appreciate any suggestions if anyone has done anything like this before.

Dry Spells and Random Stuffs

This happens to me often with gaming – I hit dry spells.

This occurs when life gets too busy and/or games get a bit dry for me. Thankfully, right now I am in the former – just busy. This, in turn, makes blogging more challenging because if you aren’t playing then there’s not much to talk about. And if you do have time you would rather be playing instead of writing about it.

We call these, “first world problems”.

I’m 25 rubicite away from the final crafting upgrade in EQN:L and its probably a solid 3 hour burn/zengrind. Excitedly, there is a patch on Thursday that promises new biomes – SNOW! I love the outdoors and my favorite backdrop is a lake, but also love winter sports/shenanigans so hey, I’ll take a frozen lake and snow. This raises a couple quick conundrums.

One is that I like my claim, and where I am. There is a ton to do with it and we are only a couple patches away from claim expansions which makes it a whole new world for building. My good friend Mehlan has joined the game and claimed beside me so logging in now I find him there, waddling away, so I can say hi and hang out. So for those two reasons alone, not moving.

The second is hopefully they have meaningful seasons – has any game? I don’t recall. Why can’t I have my lakeside cottage.. and winter wonderland for half the time? Something tells me to add that to the “captain obvious yet awesome” list of what would make the same-old MMO the new-awesome MMO. (See: combat mechanics, leveling mechanics, endgame content, equipment issues . etc.)

Oh, EQN:L tip if you are feeling lonesome, /join general (chat) – people are connecting there and always a stream of chatter. Makes the nights fly by.

I’m starting to wonder if I really am done entirely with World of Warcraft – usually I play out the expansion to the end but the daily grind of the uh, daily grind quests of MoP had me leaving early in the expansion. Now I feel less connected to WoW than ever and I wonder if that slide means the end and no Warlords of Draenor for me. My friends still play and I miss their chatter (and envy their dedication).

I didn’t get far in Diablo III – level 20 I think? Before I realized this game wasn’t as fun as the first two. The potion chugging loot-fest just got boring fast. I heard there have been some nice changes so I may check it out again. I did pay for it, after all. Something tells me I may like the Crusader class but there better be a trial or something – not shelling out more for a game that didn’t capture me in the first place.

Speaking of games I didn’t finish/start, GW2. Level 37 was my breaking point. I read a lot of bloggers who love it but I now feel I am so far behind the story that I missed out on the game. Is that the danger of too many updates?

I was >< that close to becoming a LOTRO blog for a while and even queued up the Warden (after much bitching about it) but alas, right now its EQN:L or bust. And bust it is.

Again, the worries and problems of a modern day adult gamer. Too much to do, not as much time to do it. Somehow manage to blog about it though.

Worth Playing – Gods Will Be Watching

It’s HTML 5 and give me headaches in Internet Explorer 10 on Windows 8, but works great on Chrome.

It’s part of Ludum Dare 26 which is a weekend gaming contest of some sort (too busy trying to beat the game instead of researching).

Go play it – it’s fun, and I haven’t won yet which is really getting to my self esteem.

My critical analyis is that it needs to be more theme-park and less sandbox. Or, it’s just a Friday morning and I am being silly.

2008, 184 Posts, 18 months of (mostly) silence, and missing you!

I can’t believe I started this blog in 2008. Yes, it only has 184 (often misguided) posts, and no, I haven’t really checked in in a year and a half. And yes, I do miss you.

‘You’ having two contexts, of course.

One, is writing. I think critically all the time for work, and write all the time for work – rarely for enjoyment. That was what I accomplished here. I had a ton of fun.

Two, is actually you. You who is no longer reading this, but used to. And who would comment, and challenge me, and link posts back.

While I still follow the community for the most part, I stopped participating. Not only, not participating (by not writing), but also, by not commenting. Not supporting the online community I was once part of.  Yes, I am feeling a bit old and tired and once again waxing nostalgia.

When I stumbled upon the news that EA’s CEO was retiring due to revenue issues and remembered that I lead a revolution (ahem) to stop buying EA products. It made me want to post. I thought I remembered making fun of him for being a terrible blogger, but that was some other EA dude. So, like many things that go as you age, I blame it on being a natural loss of general facilities.

So here I am writing, and it feels good. I played a lot of League of Legends on my own, ditched it because of the community. Played GW2 for a while, ditched it for lack of community. And oddly enough, against everything I ever fought for in computer games and posts here, I am a WoW subscriber again (albeit only a handful of hours a week). Why? Community. My friends are still there. Many never left.

Which circles back to blogging – for a few years I was tight with blogging, and regardless why or how I lost my desire to be a part of the community, I assure you it was me (not you). So I am back. I am not changing the title of the blog but the format will cover more about life in general with a gaming slant here and there – I am not on top of the gaming news, trends, or fads anymore. Good thing there is far more to life than gaming (and blogging about it).

Sad to see Wolfshead hasn’t blogged in a while and I think the whole blogging idea  wasn’t about expecting or implementing change in our online universes, but sharing ideas about how those might look someday.

So, going to poke around and say hi to you in your corners of the blog-o-verse, and stop by here once in a while to share stories and thoughts, when the need and if the desire arises. My therapist recommends it.

Nice to see you again.

 

I has Returned

Miss me?

I’m sorry I left! I had a whirlwind year where both the effort and joy of blogging had to take a backseat. It has been a very interesting year.

I became a CEO (complete with the 90+ hour work weeks)

I almost lost, then managed to salvage, my marriage

I had a 6 month Cancer scare (clean bill of health – finally)

I still lurked and read both my favorites, and I’m sorry for not supporting you with comments. Selfishly, especially with the health angle, I become very self contained.  I have been playing games – it was a ‘comfort’ angle where I played both old and new, when I could, and I managed to pull through all of my challenges successfully and have been living a much more balanced life (except I still work too much, but that is pretty much required =)

Some changes around here – updated the look, and working on getting the mobile version up and running. I am also now posting under one of my gamernames (yes, the irony is not lost on that). I will probably continue to tweak around on the site as I discover what little goodies WordPress has thrown out over the past year.

Anyhoo – feels good to be writing again, and looking forward to talking with you soon.

/hugs

 

Lighter Topic

I am part of a WoW guild. I have spoken briefly about it in the past in a few topics, but nothing major (you know, the one I used to be GM of, yadda yadda). It’s going through a change right now, and the people that founded the guild are mostly gone. It was a great guild and will be interesting to see as a “casual” player what happens with it. They are working on their 4th GM right now. I have a Guild post lined up for the future. This is of lighter fare.

I still read the boards, and Clawdia/Orvie updated a thread that was/is kinda cool. It’s in private guild forums so I can’t link it.

Since the guild was formed at the beggining of Burning Crusade, we have had 12 kids born into guild members. Hell, that’s a solid 10 person raid group (with rotations, even). It’s a fun thought – a group of adult gamers grouped by an in game tag sharing parenting tips for newborns (after they read the Yogg-Saron strats, mind you)

Puts things into a fun perspective when gaming and real life collide.

Working Title : Crap the Sack

So I have a game design idea. It is a basic dice game, a game we discovered on vacation one year in Jamaica. A bunch of very wealthy guys were sitting around a table gambling with each other on it and we quickly became friends because they, and we, all owned Omega watches. Anyway, we took the basic premise of that game and switched it around and it evolved over the past 8 years. It is a blast, and we all sit around laughing our heads off playing it for hours. We play it in bars, around campfires, anywhere, any time. The game defines us. It is officially called “Sh*t the Bed” but I figured I should tone down the title a bit since it would essentially be a family title.

Graphics needed are minimal, although there is a scoring and math system involved. I used to be quite the programmer – I was on my high school programming team and we went to the Nationals with Turing. (I know, reeks of nerd!). I have been out of the game for a long time, and ask you, who read this, what is a good, simple language to pick up for a simple project such as this? Flash? XBL? I shudder at the thought of C++ for such a simple premise, but figured I would put it out to the experts.

Something I always wanted to put into game form and could be a fun entry back into entry level programming.

Outpost Kaloki

As a PC gaming enthusiast, I have decided to spread my wings and try some new things. PC gaming has been made famous not only by the huge budgets and blockbuster titles, but also by little shops/guys in basements who put out some quality (yet often limited) titles. They grab people, make them have a ton of fun, and are a great move away from the $50 titles. I have spent so many years in MMO land, and big budget FPS land, that I nearly forgot the base of which makes PC gaming so special to begin with. A mini-review follows after the break.

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