Random Stuff

So, it’s been a while since I posted, and today I’m especially motivated to write an update, so here goes:

Firstly, I got a new job, and now I’m working as a QA Tester at Gazillion. It’s a good job, and I’m enjoying it and learning many things every day.

Also in game development news, I’ve been learning to use Game Maker 7, and I’ve started working on my first game. It’s a little on the ambitious side for a first game, but I’m working on it dilligently. I’m keeping a devlog for it here. It’s still in the early stages, and most of my time right now is spent on spriting and other art assets, but I’m working on it. I will probably create a section here on the blog about it too and post updates on progress, so stay tuned.

In other game-related news, a while back Blizzard had a contest to submit names for Uniques (particularly rare and powerful items) for the upcoming Diablo III. The 5 names that are making into the game are: The Tormenter, Telranden’s Hand, Ruinstoke, Xephirian Amulet,and  Band of Hollow Whispers… As you might have figured out by now, Ruinstoke was my submission, so woot!

Finally, the whole mess with the Healthcare reform wrangling makes me very angry. Since I rant about it constantly on Twitter, I’m not going to say anything more on the subject, until I blow a whole post dedicated to the subject.

More soon.

I felt it was kinda sad that Life on Mars got cancelled, but at the same time, I think they did a great job wrapping up the story. While I did manage to do a good job of figuring out the story arcs for each individual episode, the ending was a pleasant surprise, considering that they had been dropping a lot of clues that hinted to what was really going on. All in all, good stuff. Might have to watch it again.

Changeling was eye-opening, and the themes portrayed really hit home. We’ve come a long way since the 1920’s, which is a good thing, but there’s still a long ways to go, and there are still people who are seen as second class citizens all over the world. Perhaps that too will change in due time, preferably sooner rather than later.

With Scrubs ending sometime soon too, we’ve been checking out some of the new shows that have been premiering recently. So far, everything we’ve checked out (Castle, The Unusuals, and Cupid) all seem like good shows with interesting premises. We’ll see how things pan out. I think I managed to figure out each and every one of the cases in Castle so far, but the interactions between the characters, especially Castle’s semidisfunctional family, are endearing. I like the characters in The Unusuals too, they all have secrets/flaws/skeletons in the closet, so it will be interesting to see how things evolve. Cupid too is interesting, with a strong pilot episode; I’m hoping they manage to work a few twists into the tired romantic comedy formula and shake things up a bit.

Final Fantasy XIII looks pretty good, I’m glad the demo doesn’t play anything like the beginning of FFXII. It remains to be seen where they are going to go with it, but I’m willing to give it a try. The trailer for Agito XIII also looks good.

Finally discovered who the band that play the song from the Prince of Persia commercial are – Sigur Ros. It’s ironic that the song first appeared in Vanilla Sky, which I saw in it’s original Spanish incarnation and then passed on the Hollywood remake version, because I love the song. The lesson here is don’t let your own snobbery rob you of the possibility of discovering a hidden treasure.

Also in the music department, last.fm is pretty cool. I recommended it to Mrs. Destral after her Yahoo online radio got bought out by someone and they did away with commercial-free subscriptions in favour of the traditional commercial supported free radio experience. While it might not entirely fill the void left by Yahoo Online Radio, it does have a distinct advantage for someone like me, in that last.fm features music from all over the place. It’s nice to get reacquainted with my favourite Spanish and Japanese music. Definitely a good discovery.

I’ve reached the glass ceiling again in WoW. While I do the occasional raid, my schedule clashes with my guild’s raiding objectives, so I’m stuck at doing heroics, dailies, and levelling my army of alts. Patch 3.1 also brought the usual nuisance of having to relocate and update UI addons and respec. On the upside, speccing my kitty druid for 6k critical shreds with only crafted epics and no dungeon gear is nice when that big payoff hits. On my rogue, Adrenalin Rush + Blade Flurry + Fan of Knives is insanely satisfying, and I much prefer combat spec to mutilate. Mage and Warrior are currently both 74 and questing in Howling Fjord. The Argent Tournament looks like a lot of fun, but some of the dailies are irritating in that the travel:activity ratio seems rather weighted towards the former and not enough to the latter. Plus, having people steal your chunks of rock while you’re fighting off mobs is not fun.

Finally, it’s crazy how many ideas for fun games/content can spring forth from playing a game you normally wouldn’t even look at twice while browsing for a game to buy.