Sombra Sombra Sombra!

Made a quick video for Sombra’s gear. I’m too excited about her. The Hype is real and I’m fan-boying hard. I plan to make more but honestly who knows but I am in love with Sombra already. I look forward to raging over the fact that I can’t play her very well in the near future.

Advertisements

Patch 7.1 Reveled for WoW:Legion

World of Warcraft Legion is here. And only being a week into it’s life so is the reveal of the next major patch, “Return to Karazhan.” Veterans of World of Warcraft will gather together once more wear their finest garments for the return to a palace where the former great Medivh once called home

Patch 7.1  according to Wowpedia will feature:

  • A new 5-man Karazhan dungeon with nine bosses
  • A “Small Raid” within the Emerald Nightmare and the Nighthold to conclude the Stormheim story line
  • Add on content to the Suramar story to continue the Nightfallen story line 

The patch is expected to release on the Public Testing Server (PTS) within the month of September.

Join the conversation on the Blizzard Forums: Patch 7.1: Return to Karazhan

Update: The Word of The Day; Adversity

Life is about adversity. Sometimes we get knocked down for whatever reason. Maybe it’s our fault or maybe it’s because we put too much trust in something or someone. You can never really know. I am in every way, even though sometimes it doesn’t seem that way, determined to make something of my self in the gaming industry. However, today that run with Gamestop has ended. It’s not technically official yet but all signs point to me being released for a myriad of reasons. Reasons not necessarily reflecting of my work but that of a store that requires a “fall-guy.” That fall guy being me. It’s okay however. I wont cry over spilled milk. What’s done is done.

(I’m not supposed to talk about it, pft. Also that was my opinion on the situation)

Now to the future.

I’m a person of plans. I need to make plans to make me feel like I’m doing something in my life. This situation is no different. I need a plan and I have one. I hope. It’s better then just sitting here in my sorrows about losing a job that paid me less then minimal wage for at least a year. No thank you. However this does mean that streaming is no longer just an idea but could be the very thing that makes me feel like I have some kind of control in my life again. Streaming could very well be my outlet from this crappy place I’m in, who knows.

But I do need a more stable plan because hell my computer could explode before I finish this. I mean I really hope not because I’m in no place to replace it financially.

I think I will take my uncle up on an I.T. job he spoke to me about not too long ago. Of course there will be an adjustment but again life is full of adversity. Everyday. However that adversity doesn’t define us, no. It shapes us and molds us because when we face whatever adversity comes our way it’s the way we respond and recoil that makes or breaks us.

I have to adjust but not break.

E3 2016

Another E3 is here and I’ll be honest and say I haven’t actually kept up all that much on what’s going on. Primarily because I worked yesterday morning, but I did however make it in time to see Sony run away with yet again the honors of slaying it on Day Zero.

With E3 here and live it brings about that feeling in me that makes me think, “How awesome it’d be to be there as a part of this industry.” This is now my fifth E3 that I’ve given my focus to and it seems that every year it feels the same. Not in a bad way but in a way that makes me feel renewed about my interest, passion, and overall gaming community. It’s a week where gamers all around the world sit on the edge of their seats and wait in anticipation to see what is lined up for the coming year and the near future.  It’s like Christmas in the summer, just better. It’s much more hopeful.

We are all so lucky now to live in a time where we have access to instant information via twitter and constant coverage thanks to sites like Youtube and Twitch.Tv. It’s a blessing but let me tell you I really do miss the G4Tv days where Adam Sessler, Morgan Webb, and Kevin Pereira ran the floor covering all the up to date info on what was going on during E3. It felt even more like a special event. I remember I had it all set up. Wake up in the morning, coffee, set up my laptop, iPhone, and TV. That would be my entire day. I spent all day sitting and watching live coverage and reading every update I could find. Even on games that I could care less about, but the point was that this was a time to learn and see what every company was doing. What they were planning, the moves they were making, the new IPs on the verge and what companies were teaming up with what console for the year. It was a time and still is that time to see the business side of the gaming world but most importantly the creative side of the gaming world.

Day zero is the show and conference king of E3. All the major Platforms come out to bring their best for E3. A couple years ago it was the release of the new “Next Gen Console” for all platforms, Microsoft, Nintendo, and Sony. The head liners were the reveal of the “Xbox One”, “Nintendo Wii U”, and “PlayStation 4.”It was the best way to enter this new generation of console gaming, underlined comments via twitter, ridiculous console prices, crazy launch day requirements, and hopeful titles to carry these consoles into a new age. All I could remember was how excited I was about seeing console gaming on a new level. I was also a little scared because I knew it would cost money which at the time I didn’t have but excited none the less.

Yesterday brought forth that same excitement.

I went into work in the morning knowing that I wasn’t going to be able to have my phone out checking my twitter to see what is going on but I did however get a call.  It was around noon when the store phone rang. I answered and it was a guy asking me if it was possible to preorder the new Xbox One console. I was like “New console, didn’t that conference just start?” The guy on the phone says “Yep.”  I instantly in my head thought they are launching off their conference with the reveal of a new upgraded console. That can’t be good. What was funny was I actually said this to the guy on the phone and his response was too funny. He just kind of stuttered and said “Huh, yeah?”But for some time now we have all known that Microsoft has been slacking behind the PS4 in sales and popularity. So revealing a new console to hopefully change the way people look at Xbox was a must need move, but this isn’t the time to compare and contrast the two consoles. Maybe at the end of this week when all is said and done. However, being home in time to watch the Sony conference was amazing. Seeing the orchestra and the stage instantly set the tone for what was about to take place. It was a conference for games and the gamers that play them. “The drums, they are coming,” okay so I won’t reference Lord of the Rings too much, but the DRUMS! And then we saw it, him. This brutish, hulking of a man with familiar tattoos and the burliest of beards that even puts mine to shame. Stood there and arose from the shadows, Kratos. Kratos has been a figure head of the PlayStation since PS2 and to see his rebirth on the PS4 put a smile on my face for nearly an hour and eighteen minutes. Just thinking about it is giving me chills. This is the magic of E3 where anything can happen.

And we still have the rest of the week to delve deeper.

But this is truly why I love the gaming industry. Change is about and everyone is on edge to see what new games are on the horizon. Nintendo had their conference this morning which has slowly evolved from an actual conference to a gab fest where they just talk about the games with the creators. Which is still great, but forty minutes of Pokémon Sun and Moon is a little too much. But we did get a chance to see the new Zelda games which looks great. So with that, Ill wrap this up and like you I will continue to stay posted on what’s going on at E3 and later on this week I’ll do coverage of the games I’m most looking forward to. So, should be fun.

So until then happy E3!

The Side of Gamestop I need.

If I’ve never mentioned it before I think it should be noted that I work at Gamestop. For two and a half years now. However the thing about Gamestop is that at the end of the day if you work in one of it stores, it’s just retail. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not the worse place to be employed it’s not the best… But for whatever reason, be it the people I work with, the day-to-day work, or maybe it’s the fact that I get to talk about video games for a living, right now… Hopefully in the future, just on a larger scale preferably. I enjoy my work and according to my managers I do a good job but Gamestop is just a store. It’s retail. The manager cares about number of sales on certain products. The assistant store manager cares about order and cleanliness. Now I like my managers, I do. They are cool people. We get along really well and working under them I have grown into my role at the store, SGA (Senior Game Adviser.) Basically I’m a shift manager. One of the things Gamestop does so I don’t have to get paid more. That “thing” being called an SGA and not a shift manager.

But this is not about the money, by any means. It’s about an opportunity.

Money doesn’t drive me. It never has. Probably never will. As a “man” I probably would make a terrible provider, but whatever.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago I was confronted with the idea of “What is it that you’re going to do?” Like in your life, er well with my life. It’s a question that hits everyone at some point. And you either knuckle up or just call it quits and give up or put it off. I’ve put it off long enough I think. So I committed myself to the idea that I want to get into the gaming industry not as a designer or developer but as a journalist. Sounds easy enough, well it’s not. At least from my understanding it’s not. This is why I came here so I could document everything about my gaming. “A place to write after I game.”

I’ve been away from it now for a lot longer than I would have liked, but with the release of Overwatch I’ve been occupied. A little…

So here I am trying to grind my way through the muck of the internet to get noticed for my literary skills and my “unique” take and approach to gaming. I still think that it could be done. But sometimes you need something real to rely on. I told my manager what it is that I’m trying to do now and he referred me to the career profile through Gamestop. It turns out that Gamestop has a bunch of jobs that more or less is what I want to do. So I figure this is my chance to make something in the company. I take pride in the work that I do. I may not talk about it because that’s just not my style, but I do. So here I am with a plan. A more solid plan with a foundation already made. I’ve spent some time here with Gamestop and I’ve put in good work. I’ll continue to do so. Because if I want to take advantage of a career opportunity through Gamestop I have to continue to take pride in my work and continue to do good work. I still need to talk to the right people and get advice from people who know how to get to the ultimate goal. But that’s all in good time. For now I’ll continue my writing, my gaming, my “good” work at work.

So here’s to a hopeful future.

Whoever’s reading.

 

The Tale of Two Dragon Brothers

Earlier today Blizzard released their third animated shot entitled “Dragons.”

The animated short “Dragons” delves a little deeper into the rocky relationship between Hanzo and his brother Genji. We learned that the two were brothers when the announcement trailer of new characters dropped a while back during the closed the beta. But never really knew the extent to why the two were on opposite sides.

The video goes into some detail setting up the two characters’ bio in a classic Japanese story telling kind of way. Which is ultimately leading to the final climax between the two brothers on a balcony in Hanamura. The video is jam packed with emotions and feels. For me at least it’s inspired me to work on my ninja skills when Overwatch drops later this month on the 24th.

The Humble Beginning to Clarity

How am I going to go about getting into the industry. As I write this and the many other drafts I have sitting in the draft bank, It sounds silly to say “This is how I’m going to get into the gaming industry.” Kind of a far-fetched idea. I’ll admit it. I know the mountain that stand in front of me. I do. Am I intimidated. Hell yes. Do I think it’ll work out? No. But I just can’t sit back and let this opportunity go by me. I just wouldn’t feel right.

So what about gaming has me thinking that I can maybe, somehow, possibly, make some kind of career out of this.

Let me explain.

As a child I grew up with playing the NES and Super Nintendo. Like many other children of the 90’s. I used these consoles even when the first PlayStation came out. Actually I don’t think I stopped playing Super Street Fighter until we got a PlayStation 2. So you can do the math. The reason why I continued to use these systems in the early 2000’s isn’t because I was hipster before you. No. It was however because we just couldn’t afford the new systems. In my family birthdays and Christmas’ weren’t a time to get gifts you wanted but those of things you needed. Like underwear. A sweater. It’s okay, this isn’t a sob piece. I’m simply painting the picture that we grew up understanding the value between want and need.

Now we did have a PC. It was a 98′ Windows 95, Compaq PC. It was a beaut! And heavy as bricks. I swear if I close my eyes I can still hear the hum of the fans whirling around in that thing. What a machine. Being the son of a mother who was a computer teacher I had good access to computers. I got to spend a lot of with them. Learning how they work and the programs they use. I remember working on word and creating 3D shapes thinking I was on my way to making animation shorts. I tell you this however, those skills I learned messing with computers served me well.

But that good ol’ Compaq PC is where I got my first taste of superior gaming. With the release of the new DOOM game around the corner it only seems right that that was my first PC game ever played. Doom. You remember. The game that took four, count them four floppy disks to install! Yep, that’s the one. It was my first chance at what we now call an FPS. It was gory, violent, scary, it put the fear of the devil in me as a child, and it was great. I won’t even pretend that I didn’t use the God Mode codes when things got tough. This was the beginning of something great for me, PC gaming.

Doom lead me to Quake. Quake lead to Half Life. Keeping with the genre of a first person view, gore fest, and disgusting demons coming for you  with blood curling screams! Honestly it’s amazing I didn’t turn out to be one of those kids who were at risk because of violent video games. Maybe it’s because I later made the change to game builders and real time strategy games. Mainly anything “Age of Empire” based and a little “Roller Coaster Tycoon” where I aimed to kill anyone that came into my theme park. Okay, maybe I was somewhat influenced by the doom and gloom of Doom. Maybe. But as the improvement of games began it left me behind. That is until I found console gaming.

Console gaming back then is kind of crazy to think about now. Now we focus on mainly two systems, PlayStation and Xbox. As a kid there was, Nintendo 64, Sega Genesis, Game Cube, PlayStation, Dream Cast,  and too many others to list off here. I know that there are some years between some of those listed but they were all relevant. It wasn’t like today where you bought one console and were set for seven to eight years. Tech was changing left and right back then. Saying “back then” makes me feel old. I’ll do my best to choose some better words to remind me of back then, dammit. Anyway, there were so many game systems back then it was hard to keep up and pick one. The PS2 is finally where I found a home. After countless of Christmas’ where I hoped to get one we finally got one. But not on Christmas. It was during some other time. But nevertheless we had a a system. Growing up with mostly brothers and being 11-ish at the time. We played mostly sport games, extreme sport games, or shooting games. The same could be said for when we got a PS3.

It wasn’t until I got a chance in high school to experiment with other video game genres. I remember it like it was yesterday. My cousin whose father was and still is a big fan of video games had a pretty sweet computer rig, which we weren’t allowed to touch. Unless he was there to monitor, kappa. My cousin in turn was lucky enough to have the up to date consoles. So he had an Xbox 360 at the time. Now I was there because we were going to spend some days out of town for spring break so we had this great plan to stay up all night playing video games and sleeping in the car ride over to San Antonio. So the night started off with some Godfather until it stopped working. At this point it’s about 12 AM and my cousin is in this losing battle with his heavy eye lids. I begin to riffle through his games and there it is. This green box with a brownish tan back splash with gold text written across reading “Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion.” This is where my taste in games changed so much. I remember asking him what this was but he was knocked out. So I throw the game in and started it up. A there is where it began. The voice over begins telling you about some sort of secret society that once guarded some ancient bloodline that lead to some old Emperor named Tiber Septim. And now in the dying wake of the old emperor the blood line now lies in your hands to find its last member, which lies in some secret love child. By the nine I was hooked. Next thing I know I’m sneaking my way through some rat infested dungeon with nothing but a torch, a shield, and a loosely fitting loincloth. I’m pretty sure I just convinced myself to go back and play that game. I knew I had found my home. I played this game until day break and it was wonderful.

There was something about this game that I couldn’t get over. The depth of history this game had was ridiculous. I have never experienced anything like it before. The idea of a video game having such detailed lore to me was foreign. I wanted and needed more, and it didn’t help that “Lord of The Rings” had just come out that same year . I was pretty much in on this fantasy world high. And Elder Scrolls was my drug. So I took to wiki pages and online sources of Todd Howard’s Elder Scrolls to feed my need for more information.

The point is playing certain games like Elder Scrolls, Assassin’s Creed, and even Hitman changed the way that I looked at video games. No longer were they just these mind numbing things children played for hours on end to avoid playing outside. They had become works of art to me. Something on the level of a good book or a American movie classic. Video games have evolved over time and sure some are still just about gore and crime. But others like Naughty Dog’s “Uncharted” tell an expansive narrative based on mystery, love, crime, history, and adventure. All centralized around beautifully crafted characters with their own tones and personalities. These are the qualities that make a movie great or a novel a best seller. For video games it’s no different. I believe I’m ready to take on this challenge to properly evaluate them.

My Week With Overwatch

I’ve been a little strung out this week with catching up on some work that I needed to give my attention to. Today specifically I’am running on five to six hours of sleep. Also I have been spending a lot of my time playing the Overwatch beta, and let’s be honest I saw this coming. It’s a rough feeling tired and sleepy knowing that the beta ends on the ninth. Meh, I’ll power through it.

With the early release of the public beta on the 2nd of this month. I’ve been glued to my PC and for good reason. Is it everything thing that I thought it would be, hell yes.That and more. I’m in love with this game but I also kind of hate it. In the “love/hate” kind of sense. I’m pretty sure that in my sleep my fingers are striking the “‘A’ ‘S”D”W'” formation frantically. But regardless I couldn’t be happier that I have finally gotten my hands on this game.

It’s funny because in the days of “Onlywatch,” which seems like years ago now, I thought I would really be into certain characters. Specifically D.Va and Tracer. Playing the game however actually proved to be different. Every game scenario is different and requires you to adjust your character preference. Sure you can yell expletives at your monitor because your team refuses to group up and “Push the F***ing Payload!” or you can adjust your tactic and carry your s*** team. I laugh at this because this I what I meant by love/hate. But adjusting your character preference has proven to be the most exciting thing about this game. Sure kill streaks are fun and it looks cool when your character’s icon is inflamed but what is really great is when you start to love a character that you didnt think you would. That feeling is even more enhanced when you fight in that characters specific map and you see a statue in her honor and she says “I’am Mother Russia.” – Zayra. Or even when you play as Mei and she’s happy to be home. It just makes you want to play better with them. It makes me want them to continue their legacy whatever that may be.

The game is only in beta form but it seems ready to hit the shelves. It’s so well made it’s kind of ridiculous. Sure we can nitpick and say the turrets are ridiculously overpowered and Bastion is a son of a witch with a capital B. But we can only hope Blizzard adjust these things before launch and nerfs Bastion. That’s my request. But tonight I’m grateful to have a second to reflect on the game in it’s beta form. I’m glad and I thank Blizzard for giving us all this chance to try the game out before launch. Because running this game at a constant 70 frames at high graphics settings is a huge sigh of relief. I don’t think I could play this on a console. I’ll buy it for it but I don’t know if I dedicate my Overwatch career to console play. I can feel myself becoming a PC snob. Hopefully not.

But in the meantime please enjoy this “Play of The Game” highlight I received  playing as another of my favorites, Widowmaker. It’s a triple kill by the way!

 

PaxEast 2016 Weekend

One of the biggest Gaming Expo is in full swing and Boston is colored in purple for more then one reason this weekend.

From April 22- 24 Pax East will be live through a myriad of Twitch channels those of which you can find here – Team Pax

Keep up to date with live tweets from Pax as well : @Official_PAX

A Week in Darkness

Dark Souls III has been out for a week now. And I have gotten real friendly with the “You Died” sign. So much so that it seems to taunt me wherever I go. Now I am not a Dark Soul veteran which would explain why I can’t just fly through bosses like some. I have to die maybe three or four or seven times to finally get lucky. It’s a bit unsatisfying. But it’s signs that lie on the floor of a dark dungeon spewing embers that read “Keep going. Don’t give up” that keeps me from breaking my controller in half.

tumblr_o5k4yob89f1tp57f5o1_500
It’s almost this bad. Credit

Now I played Bloodborne but after never getting passed the Goliath at the end of the street from the first lamp. I gave up, not rage quit, but gave up and shelved the game for months. But I finally came back when I felt brave and bold enough to learn how to play the game. That’s the clue to these games. Not everyone can just fly through levels and bosses like some. Some, like me need to learn and watch. Be patient. I can say, that being patient in game where other gamers are collecting awesome gear, weapons, and achievements is hard. Because you feel like you are missing out something. Dark Souls isn’t going anywhere and it’ll continue to haunt your dreams until you learn to play. I know, who learns to play games now a days. We have to. Especially if we want to enjoy and partake in an epic series like Dark Souls. This game unlike Bloodborne is so much more rewarding. Gear is a constant thing here. Learning how you want to play is another thing.

When I first started up the game I had an idea of what kind of character I wanted to play as. A herald. A herald who relied on keeping good space by poking the enemy and using holy discipline to guide me. Well that’s really hard to do. A lot of bosses I learned can be beaten a lot easier in close range. I mean standing right on top of them almost dancing with them. But the spear that the Herald uses makes that a bit hard. So I put Aveline to the side for a while and moved on to Johanna, my knight in shining er chain mail. There’s a clear difference with this character. Especially when it comes to staying close in fights. I am able to roll out and cleave with good damage and decent attack speed.  These two feats are proving to be real difference makers.

13071991_10153461395552633_4975593761210161494_o

I haven’t gotten very far into the game. I only just beat the second boss that lets you pass into the next zone. But it’s a slow learning process and I’m taking my time to learn the game and the lore. This kind of game deserves that attention. But like the guide book says “Take Breaks.” Clarity after a step back from the game can really and truly help. For now I’ll count my self lucky for coming this far without breaking something or crying in a fit of rage. But there is still plenty of time for that I’m sure. Maybe one day I’ll even take on the idea of a spell-sword. I hear that attempt is super hard. But all in do time. I will say that I’m proud that I cheesed the hell out of the NPC that carries the Uchigatana! I will claim that any day!