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mechatac Blog

At the dorm already?

Well, gonna type this quick, activity night is tonight! Moved into the dorm today, I will miss my cat dearly and she will miss me :( Anyway, I'm sure to make everyone around me who isn't a nerd uncomfortable and that is fine with me. Most people haven't recognized me with my new haircut, a friend came asking for me to someone 2 inches to my right and passed over me! Kind of fun that way, eh? so, it's great to see friends, sucks that I added an 8 am T/R to my schedule, but i'll survive.

Off to activity night!

My thought on what I'm currently playing (gaming update)

First up, Tales of Vesperia for 360. I waited for the price to drop before getting this one. Since it's a Tales game, it's inevitably compared to all other Tales games because that just how it goes. The only other Tales games I've played are Symphonia, Legendia, Abyss, and a bit of the GBA Phantasia remake which I had to quit because it was just awful.

First, the things that are better: load times, backgrounds, character models, more enemies possible on screen during combat

Next, the things that aren't, which is obviously going to be everything else.

Let me start with my short complaint: the soundtrack. My complaint is that it sounds exactly like Smyphonia and Abyss in which the only good tracks in it were composed by someone else and the rest of it sound roughly identical to the last game. Legendia's soundtrack was composed by someone different (Go Shiina) and it sounds a ton better and less samey than the other Tales games tracks, but you can just tell with this game that Motoi Sakuraba has lost his stuff and often times, I'd just play my iPod while playing Vesperia to avoid the dull music.

Next overall complaints: there are way too many invisible walls. They're just everywhere, it's practically a mess of invisible walls in some towns and it makes the game far less fun to play. Sometimes invisible walls come in the form of doors that won't open unless the story dictates it needs to.

Another major problem is Repede, one of the party members. In fact, the team Ai for this game can be just awful, the best you can do is assign a command to a certain party member to use a healing move when needed, but most of the time, they just spend their time annoying me. They each have their own unique problem too that instantly disappears the minute you take control of them. Estelle (aka healing character)'s problem is that she runs up to attack when she should be healing, heals the wrong people, and won't cancel her spells and wastes them unneccesarily at times. Yuri's problem is that he consume TP stupid fast and if you leave him to use whatever he wants, he's have depleted your orange gel supply ridiculously fast. Not to mention that he doesn't seem to know how to guard against attacks and uses some artes when nothing is nearby for it to hit. Karol's problem is using charge attacks against enemies that are so obviously about to move. If he did this on occasion, fine, but he does this all the time. Rita's problem is her spell usage. There were a few certain bosses that had elemental weaknesses that changed, the only solution was just to take command of her myself. Not to mention that she uses blade roll when no enemies are nearby her. She also doesn't learn to stop using that attack. Judith's problem is that she goes after the wrong enemies and loses tons of health in a snap, then complains. She's not as bad as the others, but she also wastes TP like a lunatic. Raven's problem is that he casts windblade all the time and he casts it near enemies where he's likely to get hit, and his blow up charm, he puts it on the ground when he's nowhere near enemies and just wastes it. And Repede, he is the biggest problem, he can start off a common battle with full health and by the end of it, he's dead. This isn't even a boss battle where it's expected, this is a run of the mill battle! And then for an overall combat issue, the camera never maneuvers to best suite you, you constantly get enemies in your camera view that just block you constantly and you can't see what to do. And while the enemy AI is great at coordinating attacks, your teammates can't seem to do the same. TP is consumed as soon as you hit the button to use the spell/arte, if an enemy interupts you, you've lost that TP because it wasn't logically used up as the spell/arte completed it's usage. And I find that the controls can be rather unresponsive at times.

Now then, onto characters. The main problem with both Lloyd and Luke was that they were massive bleeding hearts, which I highly resented them for. Yuri, thankfully is not a bleeding heart, but I still seem to take issue with him. His problem is that he's a lone wolf. This might seem an odd complaint, Senel certainly started off Legendia as a lone wolf type too, but Yuri's problem is 1) he doesn't learn and 2) no one reprimands him for such behaviour. Therefore, even when he should have learned something about how he doesn't always need to be a lone wolf, he doesn't whereas Senel did learn because people reprimanded him for lone wolf behaviour while everyone in Vesperia just laughs it off.

Another character problem is the ruining of crowning moments of awesome. Here we have a great moment but the story ruins it by doing things like being afraid to kill characters or make them feel bad for more than a nanosecond. Something I wish the characters would do more often is talk about things not related to the story, I know how the feel and interact with the story, but rarely with each other as a group, which is a similar problem that both Symphonia and Abyss had. If I'm not caring about the story and all the charactesr care about is the story, I'm unlikely to care about them either. Legendia avoided this pitfall not by having me care about the story, but having the characters banter more. I honestly wish someone from Tales team saw what Melfes team did when making Legendia once in a while.

So, so far, the game is actually rather annoying me, much as I hate to say it. So far, I think it's in the 6.5-7 range for me. The biggest problem is that I want to beat the game by the end of the week before I leave for school since I don't plan to bring my 360 with me, but I don't think I'm gonna it by the end of the week honestly.

The other game I started playing, I just got the other day, Contact DS. I picked this up due to being a Suda51 game, I saw how he does shooters/action/rail shooter things in killer7 and liked what I saw then saw how he did Grand Theft Auto clones with No More Heroes and enjoyed that too. Now I get to see how he does RPGs with Contact. I'm only a few hours into the game, but like it so far. The first thing I found out was that dying did not hurt me, I have to see a 15 second long cutscene of the team pet Mochi on Terry's bed, but I don't appear to lose anything but progress into a dungeon. I don't have to start a half hours worth of progress over, I don't lose any items or money, I just lost how far I was into the dungeon. So, I have motive to not die, but I don't exactly get punished for it either. I'm used to always having been punished severely for dying, but now that I'm not, I take a lot more risks during combat for that very reason. Your stats will only build through battling enemies and the more you fight, the more your strength increases, the more damage you take, the more your stamina increases. Normally in an RPG, I tend to avoid enemies I know are too strong, but here, you get bigger benefits from defeating them, so it makes me want to take risks.

Not much has happened story wise, the professor made contact with aliens and picked up Terry, the twist being that you're the alien he made contact with. You basically control Terry, which can be done with face buttons or the touch screen.

So, so far, I like Contact, but I'm not far enough in it to really say what on a scale of 10 it's looking to get.

Got a haircut!

So for quite a while now, my hair has been down a bit past my shoulders, all I did was just tie it back in a ponytail and I've been wanting to get it cut short for ages to be honest. The last time my hair was cut short was when I was in 1st grade, so well over 10 years ago.

Truth be told, I don't really like it right now, my hair kinda does weird things when it's short due to being so thick and the best way to tame it is a bit of hair spray, which I don't like using. The type of cut I got is shorter in the back and a bit longer on top (a pixie cut), but maybe I'm just really not used to it. I like how it feels, short and out of the way, but not really how it looks if that makes sense. Havings bangs again is unusual too, I'll let those grow with my hair as I did before.

My favorite food

It's really easy, now, it's:

Yes, my favorite food ever is raw tomatoes, particularly of the ugly/heirloom tomato variety.

Packs of grape tomatoes are always an adventure, each one tastes just slightly different from the rest, but all delicious! Vine tomatoes are also hot items with me, especially how they smell all...viney and they taste just as good! The seeds are my favorite part, sometimes I'll set them aside from a bigger tomato, then just drink them once I'm done with the flesh.

The one thing that upsets me is seeing these dear dear precious tomatoes turned into things like ketchup and tomato sauce, two of my least favorite things ever. I think they just taste horribly disgusting and I avoid them whenever possible, they're just such a waste of precious tomato resources if you ask me.

For some reason, some part of my digestive system just knows when I've eaten something I shouldn't have, like a candy bar or something nasty like french fries, and it just becomes infuriated and gives me a stomach ache if I have too much of a bad thing. Ironically, I can eat almost unlimited amounts of fresh fruit and properly cooked vegetables without feeling the slightest bit ill no matter how much I may over eat them (unless I have a legit illness, then anything will make me puke if I'm that kind of sick). I'm really not sure why, it must have something to do with not being raised near fast food and having plentiful fruits and veggies at home, I really don't understand why other Americans (and kids) don't like them I certainly ate and loved them at that age. I'd admit, this would be more handy if I didn't eat junk food as often, really need to stop doing that.

Hot runner ups were: Pomegranates, steamed broccoli, yellow/summer squash, water, cherries

WTF do you share in a bathroom?

Dammit, my room wasn't changed, now I'm stuck in a suite (two doubles with a connecting bathroom in the middle) and had to contact my roommate. She mentioned stuff to be shared in a bathroom, but other than toilet paper (which i could see everyone chipping in for) and the physical space wtf do you honestly share in a bathroom? I asked my friend and she said storage units but no, i shove all my shampoo in my own and leave it at that. I saw people last semester share curling and straightening irons hair dye stuff, but I don't use that stuff and I certainly don't own any. And sharing towels seems like a bad idea. I am perplexed, wtf, man, wtf?

Otakon was awesome (I bought way too much!)

Well, had my friends over, it was great fun for the most part, except for me getting sick on saturday. I'm still not sure why, my mom thinks it might be some slight sun poisoning which I don't doubt, she says I look sunburned, which on me means it looks like I've got a somewhat normal complexion compared to most. Of course, my favorite part was the dealer's room, where they sell stuff basically. Found some rare manga I needed and some uncommon series I wanted. Most anime was more expensive than it was in a Best Buy or off the internet, but there were a few places that had it at prices equal to or below the internet, which is why I didn't get as much anime as I thought I would. But...I did get a lot more manga than I thought I would. For the most part, I split up from friends and we all went off and did our own thing, of course we had cell phones, so we were fine. But overall, I had a great time, learned some lessons for next year (namely stay out of the sun more so, stupid line to get in on Friday, and eat more often during the day). But I think my shopping habits went fine, I got mostly rare stuff in low stock Friday, uncommon stuff in medium stock Saturday, and common stuff and wall scrolls (which seemed to go on sale) on Sunday when sales are most likely to be (although they were honestly just on things like wall scrolls and whatnot, not on anime or manga really). And if there are any manga that came out within the past 8-9 months (like during the school year) that I want, I should get them at that $5 manga place.

Well, here's what I got!

Anime: Giant Robo; They Were Eleven; Brigadoon; Kaleido Star (seasons 1 and 2); Gilgamesh; and My Beautiful Girl Mari

Manga: What's Micahel? vol 6,7,9; Club 9 vol 1-3; Phoenix vol 1; Kekkaishi 14-17; Monster 17, 18; Cyborg 009 vol 4; Gon vol 4; Planetes 3-5; Moon Child 1-13; and Astro Boy 15 and 16

Other: Gurren Lagann key charms (Kamina and Simon); Gurren Lagann wall scroll, some pins (Reboot icon, Edgeworth, Kamina, and Boota)

Yay! Otakon! THIS WEEKEND!

I'm going to Otakon for the first time this year! It's great, I don't live all that far from the city and getting a hotel less than 15 minutes from my house is ridiculous, so I'm chilling at my house. And three of my friends from the university, who would be unable to go if they had to pay for a hotel even a hotel split between people, are crashing at my place too! We'll mostly just be using it to sleep and store stuff, maybe eat breakfast, but hey, it works! And the less money we have to use on parking or hotels, the more we can spend at the con! We're just gonna take the light rail down, it's a good 2 minute drive from my house and parking in the city for the day can be a good $20, light rail is $3.50 a person for an all day pass. Another plus to not paying for a hotel means that my friends get to come on Thursday so we can leave early on Friday and hang out around the suburbs (where I am) on Thursday and just relax that night.

So I am psyched, glad my friends are coming, and now my mom will let me ride the light rail (can't blame her for not wanting me to ride it by myself, I don't wanna ride it by myself either). Two of my friends haven't gone before either and one has.

*sigh* I am a weird child

Ok, I don't actually mean child, I'm 20 now, but weird, yes. I grew up in the middle of the woods with an outdoor cats. Insects, caterpillars, and dead mice and whatnot from the cat don't bother me. But man, I still want a pet spider. I thought I'd kinda grow out of it, but no, I still want a tarantula. At some point I had forgotten about becoming an entomologist when I started school (one guy I know is an entomology major, I look at his collection every chance I get, wide-eyed), although forensic entomology is still rather open to me, lets me deal with dead bodies and blow flies and whatnot and with human bodies which I find interesting in how they work as well and how'd they decompose with the aide of maggots. Hmm, a rather good mix, I outta talk to my advisor at school about that in the fall, probably have to go to grad school to accomplish that.

But anyway, yeah, I still want a pet tarantula. I was at a Pet Smart with my friend maybe last year (for those of you unaware, it's a chain pet store, it's pretty big and they do have arachnids and reptiles) and I saw a feeder cricket on the floor and told an employee and they got it and asked me if they should set it free. And I told them "No way! That's merchandise! It should go to a spider! Don't just free it, the spider deserves to liquify its insides and eat it!" or something like that, which probably isn't the reaction you'd expect looking at me, especially if you know I don't eat meat (I just don't like how it tastes, except chicken!) and I can look so sweet and harmless! And look much younger than I am too, like at the age where you'd think harming a little cricket would break my little heart, not excite it.

In the meantime, I plan to get the game Deadly Creatures for the Wii. It'll be odd because I'll be using my Wii, but awesome because you play as a spider and a scorpion and it's supposed to be an actually good game for the Wii that's not a complete waggle fest.

Top 5 games that change the way you look at real life

Sure, every game changes your world view a little, but some change it so much that once you've played it, you'll start to see the game in real life because it will not leave you! Here are my top 5 view changing games.

#5 Crush (PSP, Sega, Zoë Mode)

You're driving and you suddenly think of a way to flatten to world that will allow you to get ahead of the other cars. You see objects flatten and imagine how you would traverse them in both 2D and 3D. You won't see 3D as just 3D anymore, you'll now see it as potential 2D. You won't see 2D normal anymore, you'll see it as potential 3D.

#4 Monkey Island (and other Lucas Arts adventure games) (PC/PS2/WiiWare/360, Lucas Arts)

Wacky solutions abound! You watch the second Pirates of the Caribbean movie and question why they are not getting root beer from the voodoo lady (and you wonder why she even has a name now). You see ziplines and want a rubber chicken with a pulley in the middle. You see tattoos and expect them to talk. And you're just waiting for an insult fight at all times, bring it on, swordmaster! You fight like a dairy farmer!

#3 (Insert falling block game here)

You just see them fall all the time. You look at a disorganized book shelf and see how it could be organized with shapes precisely. Then you're shocked when nothing disappears. Oh well! The shapes just won't leave! Just name it, Tetris, Meteos, Dr. Mario, Pokemon Trozei, the list goes on.

#2 Portal (PC/PS3/360, Valve)

You see a place faraway. What's the fastest way to get to it? Just shoot a portal at it and shoot the other one under your feet and you'll be there. You'd like to go to sleep, but you need to shoot a portal into your room to ensue there are no sentries. And every so often when you're at work, you'll hear a sarcastic voice, telling you subliminal messages to donate your organs. That's when you pull out your portal gun and can just see all the potential. You can't look at blocks normally anymore, you just can't.

#1 Katamari Damacy (PS2, Namco)

It's simple, you'll begin to see katamari potential everywhere. You're in a parking lot with lots of cars, you see a way for a katamari to roll them all up. You see a bunch of buildings and the katamari comes to your mind again. You see pets, clouds, people, chair, objects, and you see the katamari, because it will not leave! And the whole time you will hear that music.

Got some mosquito bites...

I was helping my mom with some yard york yesterday and got 3 mosquito bites, first ones of the year (and hopefully the last), one on my left arm, and two of my right foot because I didn't wear sneakers.

Unlike most people, I have a rather bad reaction to bug bites, the next day, my left arm had swelled around the bug bit and my foot did a bit too. And my foot itches insanely, trying to keep some anti-itch medication on it.

I have scars up and down my right arm from bug bites dating all the way back from elementary school. It always forces me to itch it, and then a scab always forms, but it's not a normal scab, if you rip it off, there's no blood under it because the mosquito bite has somewhat damaged the flesh under it so there's nothing but white pus there and the scab isn't made of blood, it's made of clear-yellowish fluid that dries. But at the same time, you need to rip off the scab to see if blood has returned to the area. Overall, I'd say it'll take at least 3 weeks for the impact of a single bug bit to be over. If it's on the less fleshy forearm, odds are it'll leave a scar.

So, I've been trying to find the new Off Clip-on thing, but those damn things are sold out everywhere I've looked! They all have the refills, but none of them have the starter kit which I need. I plan to be outside 4th of July, not having bug spray is not an option.