Category: Of Interest (Page 2 of 14)

New Header, New videos

 

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Pictured above is a new header I had designed by Belghast, yay! I’ve been trying to get a new header for my blog that I could use on various social media sites for ages now, but lets face it, my skill in creating these headers is pretty much zip to none. In instances like this instead of getting upset that I can’t create the header myself, I decide to find someone who can. On that same note I’ve also commissioned someone to create a new cartoon-esc avatar for me to also use across social media, so I don’t have to keep using my real picture. Now, why would I do this? It’s for a few reasons. Number one is that I’d like things to be uniform across all of these places. Number two, I’d like to do more streaming on twitch / youtube, and I don’t particularly want or need my real image gracing the pages. It took me a few days to find someone who was willing to give the avatar a try, but I’m confident that I’ll be happy with the results. I’m incredibly happy with the new header for the blog, and I’m looking forward to transitioning that header over to other media over the next week.

Speaking of media, I did do two twitch streams on Saturday. I did a short recap on Wurm Online (where the sound is absolutely horrible, my apologies. If you want you can fast forward past the part that’s playing music so it doesn’t drown out my voice so much) and then another stream later on in the day where I was exploring the Festival of Unity SPLAT event on Antonia Bayle (so much fun). I plan on picking up a new mic before too long, and I’m also picking up a webcam, something I’ve actually never attempted to do in my streams. I would like to make these streams a weekly thing, but that will depend on how busy I am and what games are on my plate. Wurm Online for example is not the most thrilling of games to broadcast unless you’re going out on a hunting trip or are working on terraforming the property.

You can follow my twitch channel if you want to be notified of streaming, or if you’d like to see the videos I’ve made in the past, I have most of them over on my youtube channel. Again I can’t promise that I’ll actually go anywhere with any of this, but it’s a nice fun little hobby on the side, and who knows. Maybe I’ll develop a knack for it over time. In the meantime, I’m incredibly happy to finally have updated my site a bit. After all, it has been 9 years since I started blogging on MmoQuests. It was time for a facelift.

As always, happy gaming, no matter where you find yourself!

Who Inspires You

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Firstly, image is not my own, I nicked it from the internet. Secondly, this post is less about video games and more about life, so you’ll just have to come to grips with that.

In the last ten years I have “met” some truly inspiring people. Some are people I’ve gotten the pleasure to meet in real life, others are those I only know through video games or through online social media (which typically involves video games). They may not be particularly inspirational to you, but to me they have helped shape who I am. I thought I’d take a little bit of time to talk about some of the more influential ones and share why I find them inspiring. I’ve done posts like this in the past, so you may see some repeats.

Teresa from twitter / blog / games: One of the most inspiring ladies I’ve never met before, I just absolutely love her outlook on life. Things don’t always go as planned, they’re not always sunshine and roses, and yet somehow this lady reminds me that we must keep going forward. That we keep putting one foot in front of the other and move on. I also think she’s one of the bravest that I know, especially when writing about life on her blog. I find this very inspirational, very motivational.

Emily (Domino) twitter: Now the producer at DaybreakGames, this lady is just.. wow. First of all she’s Canadian, so of course there’s a point in her favour already, we Canuck’s have to stick together. She cooks some pretty amazing food, owns cats, and I’ve never seen her handle herself as anything but professional especially in this type of a job. I’ve “known” Emily for years now, and she did amazing things for the EQ2 housing community once upon a time and continues to promote the community. She’s also pretty crafty. I don’t know how on earth she finds the time. This woman is like a superhero to me.

Deirdre (CRB_Sunshine) twitter : Community Manager for WildStar, I have the pleasure of working with this lady on a daily basis. One of those superhuman’s who are able to balance multiple tasks on a single finger, I have no idea how she does it. She also has a very lovely family, and she just works very hard. People who work hard inspire me, they motivate me. Especially when I feel things are slipping through my grasp. Obviously I’m a bit biased with this entry, but I can’t help it.

Tami (Cuppy) twitter: Now, I haven’t always seen eye to eye with Cuppy. In fact I’m pretty sure I’m blocked on her twitter (or she hasn’t given me a single thought and just ignores anything I say, which is just as likely, I’m pretty invisible) BUT this woman is amazing. She’s the content producer at Riot, and is probably one of the strongest women I know. She stands up for her beliefs – and I find that inspiring. I don’t believe that we have to get along with everyone to find them inspirational. We don’t even have to like them. I think it’s foolish to think that we’ll get along with everyone we come across, but I know I’m still a better person for watching this person interact with others.

Morgan (Missdoomcookie) twitter: Working as a Narrative Designer for Halo 5, this lady is geek to the core – and fantastic. One thing I need to note about all of the above, is that they all have broad interests and that’s just part of the reason I find them inspirational. They’re real people, with regular interests that they don’t mind sharing with the world. They’ve opened themselves up and let people know that they’re human beings. I find that fascinating. I’ve “known” Morgan for years now, though we’ve never actually met in person. Her crafty side makes me want to learn more, and her writing is amazing.

I’ve never ‘met’ any of these ladies in person (even though I was in close proximity to most of them at one time or another back when I was writing for Beckett Massive Online Gamer) but they’ve still touched my life. Is that a bit creepy? Probably, but just like some people look up to movie stars, athletes, or other public figures, these are the people that I look up to. They deserve a bit of recognition and my thanks.

D&D Night: Entrance to the Tomb of the Ghast Queen

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Like I mentioned earlier this week, I’m the newest DM attempting to fumble her players through an adventure. I’ve never DM’d before, and I’ve always wanted to. I decided to go with an already-created adventure (I’m not quite ready for campaign level stuff yet) and so I searched around online until I found The Tomb of the Ghast Queen. This post does include spoilers to the adventure, so if this is something you’re currently playing or want to play in the future you may want to skip on by.

Our first session was spent creating characters. Right now our group is only two plus myself as DM. Not a huge problem, I decided to play an NPC alongside, I’m pretty flexible and I believe that the rules are more of a guideline than absolutes. Myndi, the halfling rogue, and Borrik, the dwarf warlock, soon emerged. It was time to adventure in the second session.

The story began easily enough. Borrik was known as the chef aboard a ship of pirates. The captain, crew, and his pet goldfish were all brutally murdered. He was spared, but heartbroken about his beloved pet. He decided to make a pact with an entity who gave him magical abilities in exchange for his loyalty. The entity also revived his goldfish in the form of a clockwork goldfish, which Borrik carries around with him in a small glass orb attached to his belt. He’s often seen talking to his little companion, and when his ship finally docked, dead crew aboard still, he disembarked into a sea of people that were in some sort of altercation on the docks. Guards were everywhere, and he had no idea what was going on. He got swept up in the incident, and taken away to jail for treason.

Myndi on the other hand, grew up in the town that Borrik landed at. The land is ruled by the Ghast Queen, formerly known as Queen Esmerelda the III, she gave up her life to rule in immortality, and that’s where things went wrong. She rules over the land with an iron fist, and her guards seek out people to enslave to work in her mines on a daily basis. Myndi happened to be a guild merchant, and a very good one. She always knew which  masonry items were worth a lot of money and which were useless. She made her living by buying and selling these items to other people. Sometimes shady people. She made one of the guards that day angry by quoting him a price he didn’t like, and so she was one of the 20 people or so hauled away to work in the mines.

5 years pass, and our potential heroes have been working as slaves in the mine ever since. Stripped of their belongings, they keep mostly to themselves. Borrik notices the blue eyed halfling on a number of occasions, but she’s always looking at the ground and staying out of trouble, which is almost unheard of for her race. One day the guards round up 20 of the slaves and chain them together, leading them outdoors. They make their way out of the mines and up the side of a nearby mountain, then take an elevator shaft down into the dark once more. Everyone is rounded up in a single room, and the guards read from a parchment about a game called ‘The Gauntlet’. The rules are simple. The team that brings together all 4 Hand of the Lich gems, hidden within the tomb, will be granted freedom. The 20 slaves gasp – and as the guards continue reading, they slowly one by one drop off into unconsciousness.

Borrik and Myndi wake up and realize that they’ve been paired into a team. They’re supplied with a backpack, a handful of their personal belongings from when they were arrested, and not much else. Myndi is impatient and wants to begin hunting for the gems right away. Borrik has other ideas, and wonders if the pool of water in the room they woke up in is acid. He decides to take one of the old rusty tools that are laying around scattered on the ground and tosses it into the water, which does absolutely nothing. Myndi thinks Borrik is a bit odd, but imagines it’s not unusual for people in their particular situation.

They continue South even though entrances lead north, east, and west as well as south, and soon notice an archway on the right hand side. Borrik tries to peer around the corner but he doesn’t see anything except a rather large room, a statue on one side, and 5 treasure chests in the middle. He tosses a torch into the room about two feet, and a small click is heard. As he approaches the torch, the floor gives away, but at the last second he is able to jump backwards and avoid falling into a pit. He and Myndi creep along the side of the pit, and he directs Myndi to the statue, indicating that she should examine it while he checks out the chests. Throughout the room he can hear the other slaves exploring, and occasionally a scream breaks out. Myndi notices the statue has a black gem in its outstretched hand, and as she reaches forward a stream of acid hits her directly in the face. She crumple to the ground, her body wracked with spasms. Borrik is a quick thinker and pulls out her healing potion that each slave was given before they began. After a short rest, she is feeling much better. She apologizes, and explains that her skills of finesse must be rusty after so much time in the mine.

Borrik and Myndi walk back to the chests in the center of the room, ignoring the statue. They each select a chest and try to open the lid at the same time. Neither one succeeds, and they realize the chests are locked but not before they fling themselves backwards and into each other, sending one another sprawling. Myndi attempts to disarm them and unlock them with her thieves tools, but she has little luck. Borrik decides he should just wail on one with his club which does absolutely nothing. They spend a few hours working the locks on the chests, and eventually (through sheer luck) manage to open two of them. One contains 1,000 silver and 50 gold, and the other has 3200 copper. Myndi starts to get impatient that they haven’t found a single Hand of the Lich gem yet, and the two agree that it’s high past time they go on their way. They choose to leave through the north east arch, but before they do, Borrik senses something is off about a nearby pillar, and he disables a sleeping spell. Myndi is impressed, and together they leave through the arch. As they do,  a heavy scimitar blade comes swinging down, striking each of them across the arm and upper chest. Their wounds bleed quite a bit but don’t seem too deep. They collapse in the corridor and bind their wounds with rags found in their backpacks while they recuperate a bit. Neither one wants to use the healing potions they have left. Down the hallway they can hear the cries and screams of more slaves, but the sounds are fainter, and more spread out. We leave our adventurers there for now, as they rest and reestablish themselves.

(Details: Succeeded in a check vs. detecting the first trap, didn’t  manage to disarm it, but did manage to jump backwards in time. Failed discovering the acid trap, and failed in preventing any of the damage. Also failed opening any of the chests, numerous times through numerous methods, eventually succeeded at two of the five. Succeeded in detecting the sleeping spell on the pillar, failed in disarming it, but succeeded in resisting the spell. Failed at detecting the scimitar trap, failed at dodging any damage, no mob encounters in this room..)

Too Old for D&D?

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Is there such thing as being ‘too old’ to play Dungeons & Dragons? This is the question I’ve been asking myself lately, and honestly I don’t see a specific age as a requirement. When I was growing up I played with a few of my friends, but I was never as involved as I wanted to be. Now that I’m older (and have my own place) it has become my goal to get a weekly group going. While I know that there are numerous tools that turn this tabletop game into a digital adventure, I miss being able to sit around an actual table and I miss the interactions and bonding that happens. I’ve seen a lot of my video game industry friends stating that they’re heading off to their weekly D&D night, and it makes me crave the entire experience even more. Silly? Maybe, but I love the creativity that comes from playing this game.

So I did it. I went out and bought the player’s handbook, the dungeon master’s guide, and the monster manual (plus two pounds of dice. I mean come on, you can never have enough dice). I downloaded an easy 5e adventure to whet my appetite, printed out character sheets, and asked a few friends if they wanted to come over to play. First session is creating characters. While I have played the game before (AGES ago) I’ve never been a DM. I’m excited about it. I love making up stories and describing locations. I love drawing maps. I am eager to see how players interact to certain things, and responding in kind. Since I’ve never DM’d before I figured the best way to go through the learning process would be to use an already created adventure, which is a lot shorter than a campaign. There are some more complex ones that you can purchase on Amazon, but I just did a quick internet search for a free one that used 5e rules. I don’t want things to be horribly complex, and I imagine that for my first few runs I’ll be quite lax on the “rules”. I’d rather players get creative and get into the story and involved rather than trying to enforce a lot of regulations.

Once I get more comfortable with how things flow, I’m looking forward to creating my own campaigns. I have a notebook ready for.. well, notes, and I’ve already begun planning out what stories I want to run, npc’s to fill my towns, and I’m looking forward to picking up some graph paper so I can hand-draw some maps. That’s right, I said hand draw. Who even does that these days. I know there are other bits and bobs that may be important to pick up along the way (like a play mat and miniatures) but for now those are not essential. Lets just see where this goes.

Getting Started with the Newbie Blogger Initiative

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It’s May (already?!) which means the ‘Newbie Blogger Initiative’ has kicked off. Basically it’s a group of people who encourage others to blog more often / at all if they’ve ever had an inkling to. Belghast wrote about it in greater detail here, and they also have some forums set up here. I’ve been running MmoQuests for 9 years as of June this year, so I know a thing or two about blogging and what it takes to keep going. Though I have slowed in my writing since I started working for Carbine Studios, it’s not from a lack of desire but just a lack of time. I’m not getting super involved in the event, but I do like to watch from the sidelines.

For people who may have always wanted to blog but haven’t wanted to deal with the hassle of setting up a blog or actually running one – there are options out there. For example did you know that besides MmoQuests I also run Nomadic Gamers? This is a multi-author blog that I started five years ago for people who wanted to blog but didn’t want to deal with the hassle of setting one up. Over the years it has come down to just one current author, but I keep it running and people are welcome to contact me if they want to be a contributor. There are other multi-author sites like this out there as well, so don’t feel that you have to do things a certain way.

One thing I personally strive to do more of is not just read new blogs, but to leave comments on other blogs so that the writers know they’re being read. It can feel like this community is very closed off, that everyone interacts within their own little bubble and rarely spends any time looking outside that bubble and then the opinions that are being shared just turn into a circle of back patting and self congratulations. I think that sort of promotion is harmful, and we need to break out of it.

Why is blogging important? Well. Besides the obvious reasons like blowing off steam and sharing your opinion with the world, it has the potency to turn into something much larger. Like I said, I’ve been running MmoQuests for 9 years now. I started off small, writing about my main game (EverQuest 2) and kept the posts informative and not vulgar. Honestly that part is completely up to you – but if you know how to write negative things without coming across as a douche, it helps. Anyway. I started writing about EverQuest 2. Because of that, I landed a job with Beckett Massive Online Gamer writing guides and interviews. I spanned out a few more games besides EQ2, but still had my roots there. Because of my involvement to date with all of THAT I landed a volunteer position with SOE on the Community Council. Occasionally I’d get another freelance job, like writing for MMORPG. I continued to blog while working for Beckett MOG, and wrote for their magazine aimed at younger gamers, Fun! Online Games (also known as FOG). These things carried on for a few years until eventually MOG was shut down, and I landed a job a few years later with Carbine Studios (WildStar) which is where I’ve been for over a year now. A lot of it was luck and knowing the right people, but having not started out some place small I wouldn’t be where I am. I’m not saying everyone who starts a blog is going to move on to bigger and better things – but it sure doesn’t hurt your prospects depending on how you conduct yourself and how bad you want something. The one piece of advice I give to everyone is consistency. Be constant. Be reliable. Keep writing.

Birthday Games

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My birthday was two weeks ago, and I got some pretty awesome games from some pretty awesome people. I’ve been trying to fit in some time here and there to play, but of course there are just so many games out there, finding enough time can be a game in itself.

One of the games I got was Hyper Dimension Neptunia Re;Birth 1 and of course a whole slew of DLC for the game. It’s cute, it’s fun, it’s a bit of a grind-fest but I don’t mind that at all. The characters have personality in this turn based JRPG,  and it’s a lighthearted funny game that you really can’t take too seriously. Some days I really need that.

Another game I received was Fortune’s Tavern. Now this game is a bit misleading in its description. It sounds as though you’re going to be running a tavern, maybe something like running a shop in Recettear. Unfortunately it’s still got a lot of bugs, so if you’re looking for a polished game keep in mind the development is still going on. I had issues getting it to run at first (lots of crashes if I touched anything at all while the game launched) and you want to make sure you’re not playing in full screen. The movement is also a bit wonky, you use your arrow keys to move around the map and have to aim for doorways and watch out for walls. It’s not quite as responsive as I would have liked, but that’s not necessarily a deal breaker for me. It does bring back a lot of nostalgia, it has an older pixilated look to it, and it reminds me of Harvest Moon in more ways than one. You’re given a brief tutorial with setting up the inn, how to grab quests, and how to earn coin. You learn the story of the land, and get some combat experience in. My first pet was a chicken – doesn’t get much better than that. There are also some DLC available, which I was also lucky enough to have been gifted.

I haven’t had a chance to play If my Heart Had Wings yet, but it’s on my list of games for this week. I’m hoping to get back to a ‘New Games Thursday’ type post where I can talk about some of the .. well, new games.. on Thursdays. This was another birthday wishlist gift, and I’m really looking forward to getting into the story. These visual novels are just a real guilty pleasure for me probably stemming from the fact that I love reading and you don’t have to ‘compete’ to play these types of ‘games’.

Dandelion – Wishes Brought To You is another game I haven’t had the time to start playing yet, but I’m looking forward to it. It also falls into the ‘dating sim’ or ‘visual novel’ type game, so it’s another relaxing game where I don’t have to be stressed by competition.

What have you been playing lately, picked up any new games? Have a backlog of awesomeness that you just don’t have the time to get to? Let me know in comments!

Tagged with Liebster-ness

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MrrX tagged me in this Liebster Challenge that I’ve seen floating about for some time. It’s no surprise it took someone this long to tag me! If you haven’t checked out his blog before you most certainly should. I’ve been reading his stuff for.. well, years and years now. I’m not exactly sure how it works, so you’ll have to just suffer along through this post. First up, 11 random facts about myself.

  • I really don’t like being called Steph. My name is Stephanie, and for some reason I’ve just never enjoyed it when people only used half my name. I don’t bother telling many people because .. well, what would be the point. I don’t get upset about it, but inside I cringe a little. I really appreciate it when someone asks me “hey, do you mind if I call you Steph?” and then I can respond that, well, actually, I prefer Stephanie.
  • I don’t like pizza. It’s just not good. I’m sure it has something to do with the fact that I also don’t like bread. Or butter (or margarine).
  • My guilty pleasure TV shows end up being British shows about 90% of the time that are on BBC and since their accents are sometimes hard for me to make out, I watch them with subtitles.
  • I don’t know how to drive. I’ve had my beginners before, ages ago, but it’s just something I’ve never really wanted to do. It’s usually quite awkward and embarrassing for me to talk about but now that I’m older I spend less time trying to apologize for the way that I am, and more time just being myself no matter what that entails.
  • I never owned a computer growing up, and I wasn’t really into video games at all. My first computer was just bits and pieces of other computers, and I was 18. We had a computer at home but it was my Dad’s toy so we didn’t do a whole lot with it aside from email and use his BBS when he ran it.
  • I have always wanted a sister. I have two younger brothers that I adore, but I miss the closeness that I think comes with having a sister. That may be false, maybe sisters are not close at all, but in my mind I have a certain idea about them that makes me smile.
  • I collect stuffed animals, stamps, stickers, and books. I don’t have many stamps right now, but I have far too many of the first and last items. It makes me smile to think about them. My collections bring me a lot of joy. I think that’s important this day in age.
  • I lived in Germany for the Gulf War and the fall of the Berlin wall (I’m a military brat, my Dad was air force). I still remember the air raid sirens that used to go off for practice, and have vivid memories of bomb threats being called in to our PMQ area and my Mom having left a pot of spaghetti sauce on the stove while we evacuated. Funny, the things we remember.
  • I am and will probably always be, a morning person. I’m wide awake first thing, no matter what time I’ve gone to bed the night before. Afternoons however I turn into a slug and just want to sleep.
  •  I’m a lefty, yay!
  • When I grew up my family always had a lot of pets, and I cherish that very much. We’ve had hamsters, birds, fish, cats, dogs, rabbits (well, one), and probably another one or two that I’ve forgotten. I think pets are really important, and I carry those values with me today.

Now onto the questions directed at me. Good grief you are probably all asleep already! I wouldn’t blame you.

Why Blog?

I don’t really have a reason, I’ve just always enjoyed writing. I’ve had MmoQuests for.. 8 years now? Maybe even 9, I would have to count. I may not always write, but I always come back to it and I enjoy it quite a bit. I do own a few other blogs, too. Personal ones. They help me release tension and give me an outlet for creativity.

Why MMO’s? Or why not? 

Probably cliche to say this, but it’s because of the people in them. I do play single player games as well but I constantly swing back to MMOs because I crave that social aspect even though I myself am not particularly social. I just like to observe.

Science Fiction? Or Fantasy? 

That’s an easy one. Fantasy. I’ve never been a fan of sci-fi. In fact the only sci-fi game I enjoy is EVE Online and I can’t even begin to describe why that is my game of choice.

What of Steam? 

I love steam. I have around 200 games in my collection and I love knowing they’re all just right there. I like that I can share those games with friends and family, and that no matter what computer I’m using the games are ‘out there’ some place. Now of course I know they could also be taken away, since they’re ‘virtual goods’ but I haven’t had any fears of that happening.

Gaming Relics? 

Not a single one, since I wasn’t a gamer growing up. Even if I were a gamer, last year I up and moved across the country with only one suitcase to my name, so I wouldn’t have any extra belongings to begin with. I used to own some D&D items, and that was exciting. They’ve been left behind for now though.

Three Games that Shaped You

  • Redemption. This was a MUD, and it’s where I first realized that I was indeed a gamer. I started playing just after high school with a lot of local people. We would meet up on top of the shopping mall down town on the roof for “Mud Meets”.  I created two maps, one was an insane dwarven amusement park and the other was a play on Gulliver’s Travels. It was a lot of fun. I still keep in touch with quite a few people from the game, though I quit years ago. That game helped turn me into who I am today.
  • EverQuest. My first ‘real’ MMO. My first major game addiction. I met so many people there, formed so many friendships. I started blogging when I was playing EverQuest. I got into writing about games because of EQ. I eventually started playing EQ2, and writing about that, too. I got hired by Beckett, and started writing articles about video games full time, professionally. That game opened so many doors for me that I didn’t even know existed. That I had no idea were even out there. I wouldn’t be where I am now, working for Carbine Studios, were it not for me playing EQ way back when.
  • Vanguard: SOH. That game will forever and always hold a place in my heart. I was a guide for Vanguard, and ran player events quite frequently. You may have seen me role-playing in one of the main cities, or calling for participants to one of my events. Vanguard taught me a lot about patience. The people of Vanguard taught me a lot about passion. My guide name was Faralithe.

Rolling Up a New Character

99% of the time, I’ll always choose to be a healer first. For some reason that’s just the role I enjoy playing. My second favourite is of course crowd control (ie: enchanter) if there is one.

What Games Did you Play Before MMO’s?

Like I mentioned above, very little. I did the usual super mario stuff because my brothers were both really into games, but I wasn’t much of one.

Videogame Capital Of (The / Your) World

California without a doubt. I’m biased, obviously. SOE flew me there back when I worked for Beckett, and Carbine Studios is there. Next would probably be Vancouver, or Montreal. I’m not completely giving up on my canuck gamers yet!

Which MMO’s have you really invested yourself in? 

EQ, EQ2, Vanguard, Wurm Online, and WildStar. I play other games (lots of other games) but those games affected my entire life. I’d consider that pretty invested.

How do you spend your time in MMOs?

Crafting. If I’m not crafting then I’m harvesting and if I’m not harvesting then I’m decorating (if it’s available) and if I’m not decorating then I’m probably doing one of the other thousands of things there is to do in game.

 

I don’t even know who to tag because I know the more popular bloggers have already long since – so lets see here. I’m going to be lazy and ask them to fill in the same questions I answered, so that’s 11 random facts and then the bold questions above. Lets go for some really rare ones here.

Arkenor – from Ark’s Ark.

Mr.Anderson – from Juxtaposed Life

Kasul – from Shattered

 

 

Memories

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I can’ t speak for everyone here, but I know that personally, my time is way too valuable to be playing a game I don’t enjoy. If it’s not fun and constantly makes me feel negative or paints things in a negative light, it’s time for me to move on. I understand us gamers can be a pretty passionate bunch and some times it is perceived as us feeling negative about a game when in actuality we’re just really really passionate, but I also think there’s a way to convey that passion without getting all up in arms. Unfortunately not everyone feels the same way.

I suppose I’m feeling a bit nostalgic these days. Blame it on age. I long for the days where we all had an MMO ‘home’ and didn’t jump around from game to game. I have recently started playing EverQuest 2 again – even though I had stopped playing for a few years. It’s a comforting game and a few of my friends still play even with the lure of other shinies in the distance. I envy them and their dedication.

I wonder some times what things would have been like had I just stuck to one game. What if I was still playing EverQuest as my only game of choice? What character would be my main, what would my gear and aa look like. I don’t regret the fact that I play so many games because I have met some lovely people, experienced many game components, and have had fun in each and every one of them, but still. There are those days where I can’t help but think back.

Blaugust in August

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Belghast over at Tales of the Aggronaut is looking to help motivate bloggers for the month of August with some pretty neat initiatives. He’s running Blaugust, which is to encourage bloggers to post every single day, 31 in total, for the entire month. You can about the event over on his blog here, and I decided why not, I could use some motivation. There are even prizes. He set up a nook for people to check out / sign up / etc. Though I haven’t seen a way to join, I’m going to take part anyway. I used to be very good about posting every day, some times multiple times a day but all it took was a few months of unrest (back in April) for that to cause 7 years of blogging to fall out of sync. I’m hoping this will motivate me to get back into the habit.

Will I be able to succeed? I’m honestly not sure. At one point in time I would have laughed and said it was no problem at all – but life happens. There’s work, friends, family, and then of course finding time to actually game so that you have something to write about. Maybe it will motivate me to start writing about some of those steam games I have that are sitting neglected, just waiting for me to try them out. I can’t help it, there have been some great deals and humble bundles!

In any case, it’s sure to be an interesting little experiment, and with any luck I’ll make it stick past August. If you’re looking for motivation you should definitely go check it out.  On the flip side, if you’re interested in reading posts by some great writers for the month of August, you should also check it out, maybe you’ll find a new site you didn’t know about. I wish more people took the time to leave comments to other writers, even if there’s nothing controversial being written about. While I do think it’s important to write for yourself and not an audience– eh, this is a topic for another day!

Happy gaming, no matter where you find yourself!

Farewell River

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Yesterday a bunch of us video game bloggers and twitter friends and G+ families heard that we lost one of our own. Christopher “River” Cavelle passed away. He was young, and he wasn’t someone I would say I typically got along with – but that doesn’t matter, I followed his posts and opinions anyway because I think a difference in opinion is a good thing, and River was always very vocal with his. I remember one of his final tweets (though I doubt he knew it would be his final) mentioned that he was going to be “streaming his pee” later that evening. A joke about video game streaming. It still makes me giggle. I marked it as a favorite it at the time.

There has been an enormous outpouring of support from friends and family, both in blog posts dedicated to River, and in a facebook remembrance page set up in his honor.  I never got to know him in person, but I read through all of the comments and pictures others shared, and you can just tell that he was an amazing person.

You will be missed.

Farewell River.

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