The torrent before the storm.

5 12 2011

When I look at me “Searches that led to your blog today” and see that over 95% of them start with the word “Skyrim” I know my blog is caught up in the whirlwind. Lots of people have been stopping here to learn about short cut keys in particular, which they really should’ve added to the PC tutorial. They should also consider adding the ability to set short cut keys in the full Tab menu under the Favorites view…but this article isn’t about wish-listing. This article is about what I’m doing that isn’t Skyrim but still relates to the blog.

Star Wars: The Old Republic will be out in a matter of weeks. I’m pleased to say that – since PAX – I’ve been very selective about what I read and see regarding Star Wars. I played the beta for a handful of hours and no more than that. You may call be crazy, but I see no reason to spoil the content of the game…really, the point of that game for me. I’ll be picking up a license in January, as I’ll have no time to play over the holidays, they’ll undoubtedly have bugs to work out, and I have no shortage of games to keep me busy in the meantime.

My friends and I have been considering “taking our show on the road” as it were with League of Legends and joining the Ranked scene, just to see what it’s all about (i.e. what the community within that realm is like). (That reminds me to hit up the Tribunal today.) (Back-to-back parenthetical expressions probably look weird to non-programmers.)

I’ve been using Ashe almost exclusively, in a build that floats between pure annoying damage and a more support role (i.e. attack speed for repeated application of ice/slow and stacking armor reduction to buff the damage of my team), and I have finally got the Last Hitting thing down. The amount of money  you make last-hitting even 80% of a minion wave is very, very large.

I got back into Minecraft multi-player on my friend’s sever and have discovered – to my satisfaction – that the monsters are again scary and dangerous in a way they haven’t been since early alpha. (Yea, I paid $10 for a life-time license months before Notch made his first million off the game.) The first few in-game days were hellish as the additions of hunger and spiders that jump-on-your-head-until-you-die-from-it made staking a claim on the hilly, forested marshland biome an uphill battle. I have a tiny keep, the beginnings of a castle wall, and the beginnings of an underground quarry from which I will gleefully harvest stone to smelt into explosive-resistant bricks to keep Creepers out of my gardens. My favorite addition to the full release: using wheat to lure livestock into my fenced in areas, where I can breed them and eat them.

I actually went an entire day without Skyrim (I know!) as I needed a break after two of my champions respectively completed some big milestones (my assassin taking down the final target in the Dark Brotherhood quest chain and my paladin shield-bashing his way through a Thalmor Embassy…sorry, I mean “sneaking through”) and Minecraft was a nice peaceful way to take that break in a digital way.

Minecraft is really just parlance for “8-bit zen garden with zombies in it”. If you haven’t tried it, I fully endorse doing so. Get one or two friends to jump in with you and run the server software locally (on a beefy gaming rig, you can support three or even four players sans lag if your interwebz are fast enough) and really try it out. A word of warning…Minecraft harkens back to the days of yore. When, for instance,  you would die and drop all of your equipment in Diablo, or lose levels in Moria, and punching giant spiders is as ineffectual as you’d expect it to be. It’s a lil’ hardcore, but when you close the first door on your first hut and know you are safe within, the feeling of satisfaction coming from “I built this thing” is pleasantly overwhelming.




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