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CraigB Blog

I became the Scourge of Humanity

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I recently finally finished Fallout 3. My character ended up being pretty immoral: looting everything that wasn't nailed down and being a complete jerk to everyone. He wasn't much of a murderer though, unless someone pissed me off. I loved my title at the end: Scourge of Humanity.

I must say that I was pretty impressed with the game. The size of the game world and its details, the hilarious dialogue options, and fun combat really had me hooked. I was pretty happy with myself though since I didn't rely on any guides to get my through the game. Not like I really needed it; the game did a great job of telling you where you need to go.

About the only disappointing thing I found was the game became way too easy on the default difficulty, and was even too easy on Hard. I never had any ammo shortages. I could take a lot of punishment once I gained a few levels, and stimpacks/health items practically grow on trees. And if anything really bad happened, I could go back to my house and heal up at My First Infirmary. It only went downhill once I got a follower. Charon mowed through enemies – it got to the point where I had to tell him to wait behind so I could get some EXP.

The most egregious part was radiation. It's practically a non-issue. Get too much radiation? Go to a doctor and he'll fix it up. You're swimming in caps, so who cares. And My First Infirmary will clear it up for free. I wish that radiation was more permanent, or harder to clear. It would have made the game more challenging.

I decided to play through the game on Very Hard as a good character. I wouldn't be able to loot tons of ammo, murder people to make life easy, or lie to shorten quests. I'm also not going to purchase an infirmary, nor am I going to recruit a follower. I also am trying to avoid save/reload as much as possible.

The game is a totally different experience. I chose to go out and explore the wasteland rather than advance the questline, and it's pretty frightening. For the first few levels, even molerats would take me down in a few hits. Raiders were bad news…I ended up running away from many encounters. And let's not mention super mutants. I was terrified of them. My paltry arsenal couldn't do much against them, and I didn't want to waste my tiny ammo supply on them (since I needed all the bullets I could get for vicious dogs). One time a pack of 5 dogs attacked me, and I had to use up several of my precious frag mines on them or else I would have been toast.

The exploration is a lot of fun too. I love walking to a location, and spotting or hearing an explosion in the distance. Makes you feel like there are things going on in the world. Random encounters also contribute to that. I ran into a group of non-hostile hunters. A little bit later, I was on a hilltop and watched them get slaughtered by super mutants.

Now that I'm level 7 and have better weapons, I can fight some of the tougher enemies. I still have ammo shortages on some weapons, and I try not to use my best ones too often since I don't have spare weapons to repair them with. I chose to try energy weapons, and they are rare at this point in the game.

I end up having to eat a lot of irradiated food and need to monitor my rads – I am only allowing myself to remove them with Rad-aways, which I only have a couple right now. I am raising my medicine skill to make stimpacks more useful.

And with that said, off to raid Vault 106.

Warhammer NDA lifted - WARDB is now live!

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For those of you heading to WAR, check out the new Warhammer Online database. I'll get a disclaimer out of the way: Yes, I work for Curse. But we're especially proud of WARDB, and want to spread the word. For anyone who's played MMOs before, you know how valuable a database site can be in your journey.

www.WARDB.com already has a ton of items, quests, and NPCs for the game. So if you're in the beta, you can use the site to help you. We've got a ton of other features as well:

• Career Builder - a tool to simulate mastery builds
• Renown Builder - a tool to simulate Renown builds
• Battlefield Map - See where the battles are occurring on your server
• Character Profiles - View your character, achievements, and items
• Guild Profiles -Profiles for guilds showing their rank and members
• And much more!

We also have a Wiki live at www.thewarwiki.com

I'll make another post later on about my experiences so far in the game.

Poison

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While I wish this was about the band, this post is about another thing I haven't seen since growing up in the 80's. I somehow contracted an awesome case of poison oak. I guess when I was hiding in the bushes to surprise an upcoming group of people, I squatted in some poison oak and got it on my legs. And not knowing I did so, I managed to spread the oil on my arms. I can't even remember the last time I had poison-something (I guess ivy does not grow in CA), but it looks like I have a horrible disease. While people tend to stay away from me now at the gym, the itching is driving me crazy.

Upcoming WAR database

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For those of you looking forward to Warhammer Online, I'm happy to announce what I've been working on lately: http://www.wardb.com/. There's only a splash screen up right now since the site is not live. It's going to be a database site for the game that not only lists all the items, NPCs, and quests, but also has profiles and a career builder. It uses the same technology as http://www.wowdb.com/, so it'll be fast and very organized. I encourage everyone who is going to play the game to visit and bookmark the site. We will be going live once the game enters open beta and the NDA drops.

I'll definitely be talking more about the game when the NDA drops. Also, WotLK just went into open beta. Too many MMO games coming out this year!

Warhammer Online Database

Just when I thought I was getting older...

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The woman at Best Buy carded me when I was buying Bioshock in Sunday. That's a first for me -- even bars aren't carding me anymore. I just laughed and handed her my ID. I was actually more surprised that people had been waiting in line since 7 am for the Wii (the store opened at 10 am). I can't believe that people are still waiting in line to get one. I still need to get one, but I refuse to wait in line for it. Though I may break down and do it. If supply doesn't increase before the holiday season, then moms will be getting in fistfights to get one for little Tommy.

Now playing

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Partly to test out the new bbcode embed function, and partly to annouce my addiction to Super Robot Taisen (why did I never play this before??), I present a gameplay movie:

[video=6162284]

You know you've played too much Puzzle Quest when...

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You know you've played too much Puzzle Quest when you're looking at the colored tiles in the bathroom and start thinking you can get an extra turn if you move a tile to the right to get 4 in a row. I prefer not to think what you'd do with an extra turn in a bathroom though.

Headline News is an embarrassment

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Every morning I turn to Headline News when getting ready for work to get the latest news. It goes through all the major items quickly, so you know what's going on in a nutshell. Well, for the past week they have been playing nothing but the freaking Anna Nicole Smith trial. I mean, is there really nothing more important that they dedicate whole hours to this trial? The regular CNN channel has real news content, so what gives? I have to either switch to Fox news (shudder) or Saved by the Bell. Oh who am I kidding, I usually end up watching the latter anyway! /rant

But it got me thinking, why are people interested in that trial anyway? We as a society look down upon sex in games,movies, etc...and here we are glorifying a stripper. What's more impressionable to kids: the Hot Coffee mod that 99.9% of people never saw, or the news media making Anna Nicole Smith seem like an important person?

Sir, we're going to have to ask you to leave

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That's what the waitress wanted to say to us, at least. I met a couple buddies at a bar to watch the Superbowl this afternoon. They had an amazing deal: $3 Coors Light, and you get to keep the glass. Now this wasn't any ordinary pint glass; it was the kind that has an air pocket between glass layers to help keep the drink cooler and prevents the glass from sweating. After 4 glasses per person, they abruptly 'cut us off'. As in, we now got our drinks in plastic cups.  We managed to snag two more when my lady went up to the bar, but they quickly realized that she was with us and told her "no more". Apparently we were hogging all the glasses and they wanted to keep some for the regulars. I think that it should of been a first come first serve deal, and not this spread the love garbage. Still, we had the front row for a big screen TV, so we had perfect seats to watch the sloppy game.

Turkey Break Race results

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I ran three races over the Thanksgiving holiday: Turkey Trot 5K in Fort Worth, Run Wild 5K in San Francisco, and a Wii race in both Texas and California. The first two races were fun, though I didn't beat my personal record. We had timing chips in the Fort Worth race tied to our shoes, and when I crossed the finish line at 25 minutes, I looked down and saw that my chip was gone! I was pretty upset because it wouldn't record my time without it. But when I checked the race results, it had my time recorded. No idea how it happened, but hey it worked out. The Run Wild race was also special because it's the first race my girlfriend has done. A few months ago she couldn't do a half mile. Now she's doing 3 miles without any problem. It was fun running the race with her.

Now the last race was the worst. I didn't preorder a Wii, and I couldn't wait in line. So I woke up early on Sunday the 19th to try to find a Wii before my flight to Texas. We drove to several Targets with no luck. I really thought there would be a surplus...I'm disappointed at the lack of units. Once in Texas, I called Best Buy every couple days to see if they got shipments. No dice there. Oh well, guess this is turning into a marathon--I'll get a Wii whenever one shows up in a store.
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