Addicted to The Elder Scrolls

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So, I looked at the amount of time I spent playing The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim on Steam and it is saying I clocked over 160 hours! Now that is just too damn crazy, and maybe too much as well. But what can I say, I love not only Skyrim but the entire TES franchise. Right now the world of Tamriel has immersed me more than any other videogame I've played.

But what's kept me playing Skyrim? The community generated content keeps my character Yeshua confined to what's over the Jerrall Mountains. I've downloaded so many retexture packs and installed a ENB, visually it looks like I'm playing a different game. Maybe even something that should appear on next generation consoles. And then there are mods like Falskaar which is an amazing effort from one individual to produce top-shelf material and give gamers more of what they want.

There are still tons of quests, and even new adventures I've added that I still have not completed. In fact, on Friday I finally was able to complete the questline of siding with the Cyrodiilic Empire by wiping out the Stormcloaks(I hate Ulfric by the way). I'm also enjoying the lore of the series. There's so much story and information behind the world of Tamriel. Not to mention, there are several different books spread throughout Skyrim you can enjoy the pleasure of reading. Of course, the hardcore TES fans appreciate this more than any other gamer.

I have not only been playing Skyrim, but I have been adventuring on the island of Vardenfell in Morrowind with The Elder Scrolls III. And since Steam had there holiday sale over Christmas, I also picked up Oblivion. I'm still in the process of modding the ^&%$ out of it, but I can't wait to see the White Gold Tower again.

I'll admit I have been lucky enough to stumble across some playing time with Tamriel in a game releasing perhaps this year. You probably know which one I'm talking about. By that time, I'll have a new PC built for my adventure through Hammerfell, Skyrim, Cyrodiil, Morrowind, Elsewyer, and the rest of the provinces!

Your Black Friday?

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This a a very simple question. What did you purchase on Black Friday?!!!

Besides a jacket I did all my shopping online. Here are a few new PC games I bought!

Borderlands 2
Bioshock & Bioshock 2 bundle
Max Payne 3
The Witcher 2: Enhance Edition
Batman: AA and AE Bundle.

I spent about $90! :D

First Impression: The Secret World

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Oh man! Massive multiplayer online roleplaying games; a love hate relationship. Not everyone enjoys MMORPGs for obvious reasons. One is the monthly fee that some have or the time you must dedicate to them. I will admit that I've played tons of MMORPGs since 2000. Thursday I picked up The Secret World. In fact I was debating on it but for the first time in awhile there is a MMORPG that actually has people talking for better or worse beyond the F2P topic. The Secret World is indeed interesting but it still a niche game in the genre(much like City of Heroes or EVE Online). It brings some interesting twist that are refreshing, but there are still some problems at its core. Too be honest, if I didn't jump into that huge TSW post on the PC Games forum on Gamespot(the discussion over 40 pages) I probably wouldn't have been intrigued at all.

If you like the atmosphere that the Lovecraft @#$%, Silent Hill, and hell....even Half-Life bring then you'll definitely enjoy the immersion of The Secret World. In fact, that's the best part about this game. I'll tell you right now that I am not a big fan of gory films, unusual suspense, and things in my face! In fact after watching Prometheus in IMAX, I was exhausted(talk about deepthroating). Pretty much TSW is based off of our real life world with the supernatural haunting man in the background. It's the Blair Witch Project but instead you have your token black guy(with magic, guns, and swords) following white folks in the wood to make sure they get home safe.

When I first jumped into the game I was greeted to 3 videos in the character creation which informed me of the factions I can choose from. The Illuminati(can you say 'MERICA), Templars(those blasted Brits), and the Dragon(of course they're Chinese...I mean Korean...Asian..whatever). The introduction to each is really good but the character creation right now is kind of lacking. You choose a basic wardrobe, sex, and facial features. Then you're thrusted into NYC, London, or Seoul. You get a quick introducton to combat which the system has a lot of potential(especially with the dodge system), but quite frankly it needs to be refined just a bit. Sometimes the controls feel a bit disjointed but you'll eventually get the feel of how the game plays. You can choose from melee weapons, range weapons(guns), and magic. Each weapon type is quite distinct which is a good thing and offers a set of unique skills. And since there are no levels in this game, you can use multiple weapons, and train in multiple skills. Right now I have the Elementalist skill(lightning, ice, and fire spells) which does some pretty heavy damage at range. But I have the Blade skill paired with it which gives me more survivability in close quarters. You can mix and match any of the skills; and weapons to come up with your own unique class/playing style.

But the highlight of this game by far is the theme, audio, and....MY GOD...the questing! I have never really quested like this before in a MMORPG and I hope it is done in the future. Everything is thought provoking and instead of using muscle all the time you'll need to use your head as well. With the in-game browser you'll be using it often to solve your mysteries by pulling up information on history, recent new, events, etc. I had a quest which had a unusual clue about a king and a painter, which then had me read King 10:10 in the Bible, and then it hinted at using a numerical value in the passage for a future password. You're guessing how did I know it was chapter 10:10? One clue hinted at a clock which read 10:10pm.:shock:

All this sounds crazy...but I am telling you...I haven't been this involved in a MMORPG for a long time. In fact, I'm writing this impression from the in-game browser after solving a quest which was so brilliant it made me write this impression. If you play MMORPGs I will recommend this one alone just for the questing. Not to mention the theme is done very well with zombies, the supernatural, and everything else. I'm going back to playing right now!

And how are you?!

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I have one of those blogs that shows up on your radar every few months or not at all. But I looked at my profile and realized that I've been a member for almost 9 years. I should be more active in the Gamespot community. To think that I'll be turning 27 years old in May; and when I started I was just some kid who wanted to find out more about the next Final Fantasy game. It makes me laugh. :P

Life has been pretty good. To keep it simple 2011 has been more about business then videogaming. I've been working at the Boeing facility(that everyone in Washington hates) in Charleston, SC. What's awesome is that I only work 3 days a week but it's a double edge sword. I work on the weekends. Other then that I've spent the past year and half just spending money on "fun"(whatever that maybe) and I've traveled all over the United States.

What has kept me grounded in the past few months has been one game; The Elder Scrolls V. I've played a bit of Minecraft and also Star Wars: The Old Republic. But as you know Skyrim has a alot of content to explore. I've put in so many hours since it "released" and I just finished visiting the Greybeards for the first time.

My biggest question for everyone is how have you been? I miss all you guys who frequently visited my blog in the past. :)

E3 Press Conference Reviews

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The press conferences as you know are suppose to have material that we're all going to orgasm over. This years E3 had less surprises and more questions. So how do I feel about what's been displayed so far? First, the Microsoft press conference. I've always been a fan of the Xbox 360 and Live. In the beginning of the show Microsoft got things running with a few memoriable franchises that would be returning to the console. It immediately went from that to Kinect. They did display some new ways of using the technology but I did fall asleep during this segment(probably right after I saw Ghost Recon). I woke up right around the Halo announcements before everything ended.

Sony on the other hand had more substance. The apology about the Playstation Network outage was smart and straight to the point. Plus they stuck with a lot of exclusive content and games. Much of it was predictable but still fun to watch(I stayed awake). For me, I think the most interesting part of Sony's press conference was the HD remakes of two Team ICO games and the Sly Cooper announcement. Another game that grabbed my attention(which didn't for others) is CCP Games' DUST 514. Why? It's directly linked with the MMORPG, EVE Online which is by far one of the most notable games in the genre. Not to mention actions for either DUST 514 and EVE Online have a cross-game effect. It still looks fairly average but the concept is interesting.

Nintendo...........Nintendo. Okay so you literally dragged that #$%^& on and I just wanted to hear about your new console. I could care less about what's coming out for the Wii or the 3DS. They introduced the controller for their new system called Wii U. At least it's not called Wii Wii. Now Sony has the Vita coming out, right? I'm still trying to figure out why the optional controller for the Wii U is that BIG! But anyway, a few interesting concepts kept me engaged. It wasn't until the tech demo that I really knew the Wii U was entirely different hardware. It definitely shows more power then any current home console, but by how much? Still, I was slightly impressed. The best thing about Nintendo's show was their hunger to bring back core gamers by showing developers they had the hardware to make the type of games they want. I'll give Nintendo two thumbs up for that. Still, their conference felt similar to the E3 show prior to the Wii launches; meaning...wait until next the E3 for full details.

Tomb Raider is by far the best thing I've seen at the show. The only thing that could bring excitement back to this E3 is Square Enix saying that they're remaking Final Fantasy VII. :lol:

I'm officially PC exclusive! Plus E3!

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Being a gamer who had a Wii, Xbox 360, and a PS3 to go PC was hard. At first you think that your options are restricted. And to an extent they are. BUT! There's so many games you discover that you never thought existed. But anyway a few games I've been playing have been a MMORPG called RIFT. I sure some of you have heard about it. It actually is the best MMO since World of Warcraft. They are quite similar but RIFT has these world events which are awesome. The common thing you hear from players is, "you don't raid RIFT, but RIFT raids you". That's all true. Portal 2 has been enjoyable and the Witcher 2 is unforgiving. I keep cursing at this game but I can't put it down; I love monster hunting. Minecraft is also the next game I've enjoyed and I know everyone has played it at least once.

To be honest...I'm not sure what games I should be expecting at E3. But here's some I want to see:

Elder Scrolls V
A Square Enix surprise(possibly)
Star Wars: The Old Republic
Secret World
Battlefield 3
Tom Raider
Alice: Madness Returns

D.C. Universe Online!

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As some of you may know that I've been playing MMORPGs for years, and to be honest the genre is my favorite amongst anything else videogames have to offer. I think the persistent world, the size, and the social aspect of many massive multiplayer online games create a different type of atmosphere. About a week ago I picked of D.C. Universe Online. I was in the closed beta and from what I played prior to its release the game is pretty straightforward. It has tons of potential to be much more then what it is now, and there are enough good things to say about Sony's new MMO. But it might not be for everyone while others will be immediately hooked.

If you're a gamer who is quite busy and is looking to make an immediate impact without having to sit through the mundane D.C. Universe Online might be a good choice. When World of Warcraft came out I was amazed how well the game paced itself in comparison to previous MMORPGs. But D.C. Universe Online takes it further by almost eliminating level grinding completely. I've only been playing for a week and I've completed 19 out of 30 levels. With that said the game is definitely focused on end-game content. The combat is the biggest draw because it's more action oriented and not turn based.

The character creation isn't deeper then City of Heroes or Champions Online; but it has enough to create a unique avatar. Much of the character customization is done in game by collecting new armor and styles. The power traits are a limited in what you can choose initially. Hopefully SOE will provide more options in the future. For the amount of time spent getting to max level there is "more" then enough content, not to mention a nice amount of end-game options, and PvP combat. The game does lack some more traditional MMORPG experiences including a player economy and trade professions. The user interface is probably the biggest problem since it feels clunky. Not to mention you get a mix bag of great to bad voice acting.

I have this game on the PC and while it doesn't look grade-A-amazing, the art direction isn't bad at all. Plus even on lower system settings the game doesn't hurt your eyes. I do recommend playing D.C. Universe Online with a gamepad if you do not buy it on the Playstation 3. I actually use a PS3 controller that's hooked up to my PC. There's some neat surprises and innovated ideas in DCUO that I did not discuss. It definitely is worth the 30 day free trial at the least. But some might not continue after that because of the short time-sync. If that's the case it is really up to Sony Online Entertainment to pump out content.

Note: this game isn't lacking substance like Age of Conan did upon release. DCUO has plenty of it and for those who like playing alternative characters you'll enjoy it even more. The dedication require to this MMO is minimal at the moment.

All I can say is GRRRR!

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It seems like I'm loosing a lot lately, but the company I work for laid off my entire staff which includes me. Way to start a blog, especially around the holiday season. I've immediately started looking for jobs but in a state that has a 10.7% unemployment rate it might be tough. Most of the work I'm looking for is government related. In Charleston, South Carolina there's a huge military and industrial industry. We have tons of private companies and defense contractors. Here's the thing; a lot of companies will build up their resumes and hire people after the holiday. That doesn't help me. I have enough savings to help me for the next couple of months but I just hate the idea of using it.

But to be honest I have only stressed over it in this blog more than anything. Odd. Boeing is the new company in town near the airport and I'm praying! I found a lot of jobs I'm qualified for so I am not to worried. As long as I get an unemployment check to help, I'll be ok(laughing of course). My dad who works at Scientific Research Corporation said theirs a project that's coming up with his company that my involve military tactical vehicle intergration. YEAH!!!

Besides applying for jobs and handing out resumes I have been doing a lot of Netflixing! A LOT! I watched Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, and I've started on 2nd GIG. And it took me about 5 years to finish Full Metal Alchemist; thank you Netflix! I've been on a Denzel Washington craze and I have watched a lot of his movies(Malcom X being one). A lot of Puzzle Quest and NHL 11 has been played. I really don't have the game collection I use too but oh well. Besides, I might not get anything done.

I'm going to leave my social life out on this blog because it's too interesting and would be another page. But I hope everyone will enjoy the beginning Christmas/holiday season! By the way, my Carolina Hurricanes are disappointing me. But I have become quite the Atlanta Thrashers fan after they drafted Evander Kane last year. While the 'canes keep losing, the Thrashers win. Then against the Southeast division the NHL is actually butter right! :D

Break ups, dating, and the single life.

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This is Jwill again! Everytime I try to get serious about blogging again I can never stay consistent. I felt like typing something up today; it usually keeps me focused. The past 2 or 3 months have been so strange but still very fun. It all started on a Sunday night at the end of September when my girlfriend broke up with me. Apparently we weren't on the same page anymore and to be honest with myself I think we both began to notice it for the past couple of weeks prior to the break up. But she was brave enough to pull the trigger. I don't want to observe our situation. I don't want to say that we didn't have anything in common, but I think our out look on life was completely different.

We don't talk at all anymore. Even when we physically see each other. The time I was with her I enjoyed her company and I do wish to a extent that I could go back to the begin. In fact the day before we broke up I just wanted to tell her that I wanted it to be like it was before. But sometimes things just happen.

I never been the one to date in particular or jump into a relationship so easily. I have friends who suggested that I do date to see what I like. But I just hate the game all together. Another thing I hate is having friends who are depressed about their break ups. One man I know is so depressed and eager to find a woman that every conversations he has with me is about some chick he met at a bar downtown. I would be lying to say that I haven't been on a couple of dates but I realize that I'm not looking to rebound anytime soon.

Guess what's funny? When you're in a relationship there are other people who admire you from afar that come out of the woods to tell you their real opinion on your previous relationship. I've heard the good, bad, and the ugly. I had one girl who insulted me and then asked me out on a date. Rude!

The single life does have one general perk; being able to focus on yourself. I spend my weekdays working and coming home to an empty apartment as usual. It gets lonely. BUT! I've always been a big fan of music so I listen to a lot of it(and loud). It always gets me in the mood to try things I never done before like cooking new recipes. It's so relaxing to just be alone, listening to some chill hip-hop, and cook something that taste great(or horrible).

But on the weekend it's entirely different. Friday and Saturday nights I like to go out downtown and chill with friends. I'm not a smoker but I love going to the Smoking Lamp on occassions to relax with a hookah. If I want to get my laugh on I head to the Palmeto Comedy Club for stand-up or Theater 99 for improv. Now every suburb around Charleston has a movie theater. But in Mt. Pleasant there's a movie theater where you can drink alcohol, eat dinner, and watch a film all at the sametime. Hockey season has started so I get to go watch our local minor league team play!

The one thing I enjoy most of all is traveling and music. Within the two months I went to Atlanta, the Baltimore area, and Washington D.C. I've visited old friends and made new ones. I've seen The Roots, Circa Survive, and Isles and Glaciers play as well. Dave Matthews is coming to Charleston this week which I would be going to. But I was nice enough to give my sister and a friend my tickets. I went to a kick ass Washington Capitals game, and I saw the Atlanta Thrashers play as well! But the best of all is qualifying for Battle of the Year in Atlanta in the popping category. This will definitely be the biggest stage that most of my friends and I have ever danced on!

Keeping yourself busy helps you cope with break ups. In the beginning there were days where I did nothing, and it was very easy to think about her. But now I'm just having too much fun. :D