Archive for April, 2010

Where the Hell Is My Flying DeLorean?

Posted in Background Noise, Tabletop Wargaming with tags , , on April 26, 2010 by koljarn

OK, granted that I’m still five years early, but I spent both days of the weekend and one day last week on the road (I was out of state for several days), and traffic along I-95 sucks worse every year.  To hell with swerving around stalled cars and collision debris – I want to zip by overhead.  Gravity is such a bitch.

While I was out of town, one of my friends called – he is trying out City of Heroes again.  There’s a long story behind the rise and fall of City of Heroes in my circle of friends.  Let’s just say that some people had violently negative reaction to class (archetype) re-balancing.  So, I paid for a month of CoH.  I logged in (I remembered my user name and password – small victory there), and puttered around on an ice/ice blaster that I created long ago.  I really enjoyed the blaster class – my only character at the level cap is an energy/energy blaster.  Energy makes me giggle myself silly due to the massive knockback effects.  Ice is fun because it has more control elements, though.

I haven’t finished my Belial model, yet – I got sidetracked in assembling a Deathwing standard-bearer and a Deathwing apothecary, both of which look quite respectable to me.  I need to knuckle down and paint the basics, though – the Deathwing squad upgrades aren’t in any of my lists until I hit 2500 points.  When I get a set of arms done for Belial, I’ll post a photo, but not before.  I have to hold true to some standards!

I Need to Put a Timeclock Next to the Computer

Posted in LotRO with tags , on April 17, 2010 by koljarn

Somehow, I got it into my head to max out Burhhelm’s wood working skill.  You know, to be a “complete ” weaponsmith.  OK, it wasn’t a good idea, just an idea.

Anyway, the only character which I have with Forester skill is my Captain.  You can see where this is going, can’t you?  Yeah, I’ve been working on my Captain.  And I regret it almost every day that I log in.  A masterfully crafted instrument of death, such as a halberd or a two-handed sword, becomes a wet noodle the moment that a Captain touches it.  It is amazing.

So, I’ve been restricting my gaming to the pursuit of green-con quests, because they are less dangerous to the poor sod.  I think I’ve come to terms with playing a Captain: lower your expectations.  Still, it seems like work.  Not the enjoyable kind, either – this is busy work.  No matter.  Eventually, I will get a few more levels on the Captain, and he will be able to get into Lorien, where crafting resources are scattered around with very few hostile creatures to harass him.  I like to think of it as a gated retirement community for Captains.  Because that’s what is going to happen to him once he gets there – retirement.

Enough ranting about gimpy classes.  I have been painting a few hours every week, and my Belial model is coming along nicely.  It will never be a Golden Daemon winner, but I paint for myself, not for any competition.  When I have more done, I’ll post some pics.

Plotting and Planning

Posted in Background Noise with tags on April 11, 2010 by koljarn

The past two weeks have really been a mixed bag.  I’ve tinkered around on both my Guardian and my Loremaster, explored the Spring Festival rather thoroughly, played other games, and even got around to priming the Dark Angel models I posted a while back.  All this plus working on some minor landscaping projects and catching up on some movies that I’ve been meaning to see.  In other words, I’ve done a little bit of a lot of things, but not enough to really comment on them.

Spring is upon us, and Summer won’t be far behind it.  Time to make some goals, I suppose.  I have some mundane ones, like purchasing and installing a new front and back door on the house (doors which are more energy-efficient, that is).  Gaming-wise, I’d really like to finish Dragon Age: Awakenings, the Dawn of War expansion, and paint that Dark Angel captain and a new arms for my venerable dreadnought (also magnetized, so I can swap the weapons).  Unfortunately, that last part is going to be heavily dependant on the weather.  If it is too wet or too dry, painting doesn’t work out too well.  I’ll have to wait and see what happens.

iWhat?

Posted in Background Noise with tags on April 5, 2010 by koljarn

Warning: Technobabble follows.

Word has been buzzing around the ‘Net and in my office about Apple’s new iPad product.  None of my immediate co-workers have a desire to purchase one, so it got me wondering about the target demographic of this product.  Speaking with my circle of friends and my family, it seems like the more technical your job is, the less you want one – except for those people with money to burn, who told me that they would buy it as an expensive toy (that must be nice).

I’ll admit that I have no interest in the thing, because I’m a desktop guy.  Most laptops don’t have the power I crave, let alone a tablet device like the iPad.  While I own a MP3 player, I don’t have any interest in a book reader, either (sorry, Kindle).  If I were to buy a portable computing device, it would be a high-end laptop (of course, I graduated high school at about the time when this was considered portable).

So, when will someone like me become interested in a tablet, like the iPad?  When it has all of the power and capabilities of a full desktop or laptop system, of course.  As silly as it sounds, I’m sure that day is not too far off.  Memory is becoming less expensive every year, and high capacity solid-state hard drives are already possible (although rather pricey).  The recent interest in electric vehicles is almost certainly going to lead toresearch into battery technologies, and OLED screen are a recent innovation.  In other words, it is not a question of “if” a tablet-sized device could ever be powerful enough to suit the needs of a power user like myself, it is more of a question of “when.”

For now, however, the answer is “not today.”

Just So You Know…

Posted in Background Noise with tags on April 3, 2010 by koljarn

I still haven’t seen Avatar, and I have no plans to do so.  There can be only one evil corporation, and that is Weyland-Yutani.  I will admit that Yoyodyne Propulsion Systems (a la Buckaroo Banzai) is a close second.  All others are cheap imitations.

Yeah, my mind is stuck in the 80’s.  Deal with it.

Tanks Aren’t DPS

Posted in LotRO with tags on April 3, 2010 by koljarn

I’m not going to go into details, but the meat of this post comes from a raid aftermath discussion with one of my friends.  I wasn’t involved in most of the raid – I only attended a single fight.  The boss that the raid was trying to take down had wiped the raid more than a handful of times already.  People had to go repair and return before I even got there.  The reason that the raid was unable to defeat the boss?  There were just too damn many tanks.

I understand the need to include everyone in guild events.  I rarely sign up for them any more, because I now work weekends (when most events are scheduled, of course).  However, there is a delicate balance which one much achieve between inclusiveness and balancing your resources.  There were no less than five tank-type classes in the raid before I joined, most of them severely under-geared, and some of them a little low on the level-scale as well.  Even supported by two captains, three healers, and a loremaster to restore energy, can you be all that surprised when I tell you that the boss was able to outlast the “onslaught” of one-handed weaponry which was menacingly waved in its general direction?

Four of the tanks got frustrated and left for the night, which is where I came in, as well as assorted other DPS classes (hunters, RKs and the like).  In short order, we were able to tear the boss to pieces.  All of this could be avoided if someone could have just said “no” to some of the people who wanted to tag along.  Not that they weren’t welcome.  What I mean is “No, you can’t bring your level 58 warden in level 40 gear – bring your main character instead, please.  If you want to start using the warden, then give them a little TLC.”  It may seem like you’re being a bit callous to that player, but that fact is that if you don’t tell that player to use a better levelled and geared character, then you’re wasting the time of every other player in attendance.

That isn’t fair.

C’mon, man up a little if you are going to lead a raid.  Do it for the other players.