Archive for June, 2012

  • The first time that I saw the movie Goodfellas, I was amazed by the story that was being told. I was even more amazed when I heard that Goodfellas was inspired by the true story of Henry Hill’s life.   Henry Hill passed away on June 12, 2012. Upon hearing that news, my interest in this American gangster was reinvigorated. This led me to read the book Wise Guy by Nicholas Pileggi.   I absolutely loved this book. It tells the story of Henry Hill’s life from the moment he stepped foot in the organized-crime cab stand at the tender age of 11 years old to the day when he was caught by the feds and had no choice but […]

    Wise Guy – Book Review

    The first time that I saw the movie Goodfellas, I was amazed by the story that was being told. I was even more amazed when I heard that Goodfellas was inspired by the true story of Henry Hill’s life.   Henry Hill passed away on June 12, 2012. Upon hearing that news, my interest in this American gangster was reinvigorated. This led me to read the book Wise Guy by Nicholas Pileggi.   I absolutely loved this book. It tells the story of Henry Hill’s life from the moment he stepped foot in the organized-crime cab stand at the tender age of 11 years old to the day when he was caught by the feds and had no choice but […]

    Continue Reading...

  • It’s no secret that I didn’t like the Mass Effect 3 ending. As one of the older, more loyal fans to the series, I felt seriously short changed. I had come to expect quite a lot from Bioware who, in my oppinion, had not failed to deliver (we’ll ignore Dragon Age 2 shall we…) in the days leading up to the release of Mass Effect 3. Mass Effect 2, with its function that allowed you to play either paragon or renegade and its manner of providing you with the direct consequences of your wrong decisions (sending Tali into the vents for instance vs sending Thane) had showed me that Bioware knew what they doing and had the ability to anticipate […]

    Mass Effect 3 – Extended Cut DLC Release…

    It’s no secret that I didn’t like the Mass Effect 3 ending. As one of the older, more loyal fans to the series, I felt seriously short changed. I had come to expect quite a lot from Bioware who, in my oppinion, had not failed to deliver (we’ll ignore Dragon Age 2 shall we…) in the days leading up to the release of Mass Effect 3. Mass Effect 2, with its function that allowed you to play either paragon or renegade and its manner of providing you with the direct consequences of your wrong decisions (sending Tali into the vents for instance vs sending Thane) had showed me that Bioware knew what they doing and had the ability to anticipate […]

    Continue Reading...

  • Hollywood surely loves their comic book movies, particularly during the summer. It’s not hard to understand why. This year, “The Avengers,” which is essentially an amalgamation of comic book movies past, became the third highest grossing movie of all time, and reached that status in just five weeks. “The Avengers” had one other thing going for it: It’s actually pretty good. This is frankly pretty rare for cinematic adaptations of comic books, but there are exceptions. Here are ten of the best film adaptations of comic books. American Splendor Not ALL comic book movies are blockbusters. This wildly original 2003 film, based on the comics of Harvey Pekar, blends fiction and documentary footage to provide an incisive look at the […]

    Best Comic Book Adaptations

    Hollywood surely loves their comic book movies, particularly during the summer. It’s not hard to understand why. This year, “The Avengers,” which is essentially an amalgamation of comic book movies past, became the third highest grossing movie of all time, and reached that status in just five weeks. “The Avengers” had one other thing going for it: It’s actually pretty good. This is frankly pretty rare for cinematic adaptations of comic books, but there are exceptions. Here are ten of the best film adaptations of comic books. American Splendor Not ALL comic book movies are blockbusters. This wildly original 2003 film, based on the comics of Harvey Pekar, blends fiction and documentary footage to provide an incisive look at the […]

    Continue Reading...

  •   Welcome to True Blood, season 5! And didn’t it start with a BANG, right?! For any newbies, I’ll take a quick sec to tell you a bit about my recap posts– Most importantly, THERE WILL BE SPOILERS. My book and movies posts are spoiler-free, but my TV recaps are CHOCK FULL OF SPOILERY-GOODNESS. You’ve been warned! I WILL NOT be comparing the HBO series with the books. Yes, I’ve read the books. Yes, I love the books. But the TV series has strayed SO far from the books that, in my opinion, it’s pretty much pointless to compare the two. There MAY BE CURSING in my True Blood posts. Again, you’ve been warned. I figure if you watch the […]

    TV Review–True Blood: Turn, Turn, Turn

      Welcome to True Blood, season 5! And didn’t it start with a BANG, right?! For any newbies, I’ll take a quick sec to tell you a bit about my recap posts– Most importantly, THERE WILL BE SPOILERS. My book and movies posts are spoiler-free, but my TV recaps are CHOCK FULL OF SPOILERY-GOODNESS. You’ve been warned! I WILL NOT be comparing the HBO series with the books. Yes, I’ve read the books. Yes, I love the books. But the TV series has strayed SO far from the books that, in my opinion, it’s pretty much pointless to compare the two. There MAY BE CURSING in my True Blood posts. Again, you’ve been warned. I figure if you watch the […]

    Continue Reading...

  • Aiden Pierce is the protagonist of this open World Third-Person Action Adventure game.  It’s set in modern day Chicago where the city government is corrupt.  You (as Aiden Pierce) are trying to take down and expose the corrupt officials using the grey area world between mainstream society and the criminal underground. Surveillance is an important mechanic in the game.  We’ll be able to use Aiden’s in-game cell phone for doing things like manipulating traffic lights to cause accidents, listening in on people’s phone calls, and identifying strangers.  We can also hack into personal profiles, employment files, medical reports, and get other info on them.  The game looks really cool while you’re using the surveillance systems in the gameplay footage I’ve […]

    Watch Dogs

    Aiden Pierce is the protagonist of this open World Third-Person Action Adventure game.  It’s set in modern day Chicago where the city government is corrupt.  You (as Aiden Pierce) are trying to take down and expose the corrupt officials using the grey area world between mainstream society and the criminal underground. Surveillance is an important mechanic in the game.  We’ll be able to use Aiden’s in-game cell phone for doing things like manipulating traffic lights to cause accidents, listening in on people’s phone calls, and identifying strangers.  We can also hack into personal profiles, employment files, medical reports, and get other info on them.  The game looks really cool while you’re using the surveillance systems in the gameplay footage I’ve […]

    Continue Reading...

  • Dawnguard is Skyrim’s first expansion.  It’s not just added stuff to bolster what we have, there is a lot of new content as well.  We’ll be able to join the Dawnguard or become a Vampire Lord.   Killing people as a Vampire Lord opens a new skill tree to level up.  The more Vampiric carnage you cause, the more you can upgrade your Vampire Lord abilities.  Some of the new powers include: Summoning Gargoyles, Turning into a cloud of Bats, Slowing Time, inflicting Instant Paralysis, and Flight (Although it looks like hovering.  I’m not yet sure if we can fly over Skyrim, especially because the developers have previously stated that they took away the Levitation spell because they didn’t want […]

    Dawnguard, Skyrim: Elder Scrolls V

    Dawnguard is Skyrim’s first expansion.  It’s not just added stuff to bolster what we have, there is a lot of new content as well.  We’ll be able to join the Dawnguard or become a Vampire Lord.   Killing people as a Vampire Lord opens a new skill tree to level up.  The more Vampiric carnage you cause, the more you can upgrade your Vampire Lord abilities.  Some of the new powers include: Summoning Gargoyles, Turning into a cloud of Bats, Slowing Time, inflicting Instant Paralysis, and Flight (Although it looks like hovering.  I’m not yet sure if we can fly over Skyrim, especially because the developers have previously stated that they took away the Levitation spell because they didn’t want […]

    Continue Reading...

  • I recently had the time to check out TPK Games’ latest project, and thought I would share this with you all.  They are writing a survival horror adventure entitled ‘The Bleeding Hollow’, that appears to be a nod to the old-school adventure gaming of days past.  Not only is it purported to be a vicious adventure designed like many of the original D&D modules of yore, but Frank Mentzer himself is writing the introduction. For those of you who don’t know who Frank Mentzer is, he is most notably the co-author for one of the most famed and beloved of all D&D adventures – ‘The Temple of Elemental Evil.’  He and Gary Gygax wrote that back in 1985, and it […]

    Bleeding Hollow for Pathfinder RPG

    I recently had the time to check out TPK Games’ latest project, and thought I would share this with you all.  They are writing a survival horror adventure entitled ‘The Bleeding Hollow’, that appears to be a nod to the old-school adventure gaming of days past.  Not only is it purported to be a vicious adventure designed like many of the original D&D modules of yore, but Frank Mentzer himself is writing the introduction. For those of you who don’t know who Frank Mentzer is, he is most notably the co-author for one of the most famed and beloved of all D&D adventures – ‘The Temple of Elemental Evil.’  He and Gary Gygax wrote that back in 1985, and it […]

    Continue Reading...

  • Although I like to think of myself as a history nerd, I generally avoid non-fiction books unless they are about World War II or famous, influential people (if I’m not interested in the subject, a non-fiction book can be quite boring). However, Half Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls promotes itself as a true-life novel and it does not disappoint since this book read as a fast paced novel and I found it difficult to put down. One line sums up this book for me:  “I became known as Lily Casey, the mustang-breaking, poker-playing, horse-race-winning schoolmarm of Coconino County, and it wasn’t half bad to be in a place where no one had a problem with a woman having a moniker […]

    Half Broke Horses – Book Review

    Although I like to think of myself as a history nerd, I generally avoid non-fiction books unless they are about World War II or famous, influential people (if I’m not interested in the subject, a non-fiction book can be quite boring). However, Half Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls promotes itself as a true-life novel and it does not disappoint since this book read as a fast paced novel and I found it difficult to put down. One line sums up this book for me:  “I became known as Lily Casey, the mustang-breaking, poker-playing, horse-race-winning schoolmarm of Coconino County, and it wasn’t half bad to be in a place where no one had a problem with a woman having a moniker […]

    Continue Reading...

  • I’ve recently acquired a copy of Rage, the first person shooter developed by id Software and published by Bethesda Softworks. It seemed like a pretty decent line up and I was quite excited to return to a post apocalyptic world. Something, in my opinion – along with zombies and Coca Cola, that never gets old. I spend hours running around the Capital Wasteland of Fallout 3, oogling the scenery, running around, jumping, climbing trees and historical monuments alike and I wouldn’t have minded if Rage was like this, if only to give me a change of scenery that I haven’t explored to the max. At first glance, these two games appear suspiciously similar. You play as a character buried in a hole for the past […]

    Rekindling Rage – A Game Review

    I’ve recently acquired a copy of Rage, the first person shooter developed by id Software and published by Bethesda Softworks. It seemed like a pretty decent line up and I was quite excited to return to a post apocalyptic world. Something, in my opinion – along with zombies and Coca Cola, that never gets old. I spend hours running around the Capital Wasteland of Fallout 3, oogling the scenery, running around, jumping, climbing trees and historical monuments alike and I wouldn’t have minded if Rage was like this, if only to give me a change of scenery that I haven’t explored to the max. At first glance, these two games appear suspiciously similar. You play as a character buried in a hole for the past […]

    Continue Reading...

  • Warning: Minor spoilers ahead for some Comic Book storylines from Marvel Comics… The Iron Patriot is the highly visible leader of the (Dark) Avengers during the Dark Reign story arc.  Superficially he looks like a Red, White, and Blue version of Iron Man.  But a long series of events transpired leading to the creation and implementation of The Iron Patriot armor. Nick Fury was the long time director of SHIELD but he left abruptly after the discovery that he was behind a devastating attack of Dr. Doom’s home country Latveria.  Maria Hill was director for a while but The Invincible Iron Man, Tony Stark took the lead through The Civil War and The Initiative story arcs.  Alien Skrulls invaded Earth […]

    The Iron Patriot

    Warning: Minor spoilers ahead for some Comic Book storylines from Marvel Comics… The Iron Patriot is the highly visible leader of the (Dark) Avengers during the Dark Reign story arc.  Superficially he looks like a Red, White, and Blue version of Iron Man.  But a long series of events transpired leading to the creation and implementation of The Iron Patriot armor. Nick Fury was the long time director of SHIELD but he left abruptly after the discovery that he was behind a devastating attack of Dr. Doom’s home country Latveria.  Maria Hill was director for a while but The Invincible Iron Man, Tony Stark took the lead through The Civil War and The Initiative story arcs.  Alien Skrulls invaded Earth […]

    Continue Reading...

  • The latest Infamous Adversaries line addition is by far the best so far, and quite frankly, is going to be hard to top. This is one seriously creepy, nightmare inspiring NPC to unleash upon a play group. Ischadra, Grandmother of Assassins is a soulbound corpse doll….yeah, let that sink in….a doll, that kills. Now, we’re not talking Hollywood cheeze here, no freaking Chucky dolls, oh no, this little lady was crafted from the skin of corpses, she was built to house the soul of killer resurrected for the purpose of trapping her within this construct….shame for the clerics who performed the ritual that she was better than they were. I’ve been patiently waiting (OK, almost patiently) for this book since […]

    Infamous Adversaries, Ischadra Grandmother of Assassins

    The latest Infamous Adversaries line addition is by far the best so far, and quite frankly, is going to be hard to top. This is one seriously creepy, nightmare inspiring NPC to unleash upon a play group. Ischadra, Grandmother of Assassins is a soulbound corpse doll….yeah, let that sink in….a doll, that kills. Now, we’re not talking Hollywood cheeze here, no freaking Chucky dolls, oh no, this little lady was crafted from the skin of corpses, she was built to house the soul of killer resurrected for the purpose of trapping her within this construct….shame for the clerics who performed the ritual that she was better than they were. I’ve been patiently waiting (OK, almost patiently) for this book since […]

    Continue Reading...

  • Build your own Camp Tents for your tabletop RPG games! Note: instructions follow the visual presentation!     The instructions and photos given were created in ¼” scale, meaning, ¼” would equal 1 foot in the real world. You can use the same construction process to build in any scale you desire. 1.  I cut my center posts and rafter to the size of the tent I want. I use flat boards for my flooring and more solid strips of wood for the main posts and rafters and beam. I like to use bass wood versus balsa just because it is stronger.   2.  Glue two “T” shapes together, these will become the main beam and posts for your tent. […]

    How to build miniature Work Camp Tents

    Build your own Camp Tents for your tabletop RPG games! Note: instructions follow the visual presentation!     The instructions and photos given were created in ¼” scale, meaning, ¼” would equal 1 foot in the real world. You can use the same construction process to build in any scale you desire. 1.  I cut my center posts and rafter to the size of the tent I want. I use flat boards for my flooring and more solid strips of wood for the main posts and rafters and beam. I like to use bass wood versus balsa just because it is stronger.   2.  Glue two “T” shapes together, these will become the main beam and posts for your tent. […]

    Continue Reading...

  • You’re a Native American assassin named Conner.  It’s 1775 and you’re in the American Colonies, early on in the beginning stages of the American Revolution before the Declaration of Independence was signed.  You have some trusty blades of course, a bow with arrows, firearms, and a bad ass Tomahawk. You’re going to be able to “tree-run” which is like Parkour through the forest.  You can not only finally climb trees in the world of Assassin’s Creed, but you can run, jump, and swing through the trees. The scenery in the Eastern US is beautiful and the new weather system makes the environment immersive and more realistic. AC3 introduces Naval Combat where you’re manning a ship on the open seas.  Steer […]

    Assassins Creed 3

    You’re a Native American assassin named Conner.  It’s 1775 and you’re in the American Colonies, early on in the beginning stages of the American Revolution before the Declaration of Independence was signed.  You have some trusty blades of course, a bow with arrows, firearms, and a bad ass Tomahawk. You’re going to be able to “tree-run” which is like Parkour through the forest.  You can not only finally climb trees in the world of Assassin’s Creed, but you can run, jump, and swing through the trees. The scenery in the Eastern US is beautiful and the new weather system makes the environment immersive and more realistic. AC3 introduces Naval Combat where you’re manning a ship on the open seas.  Steer […]

    Continue Reading...

  • If there was ever a time that I am excited about being a Playstation owner, it is now. After following E3, I’ve come to the conclusion that we’re in for a rough and hopefully extraordinary ride. Creators of Heavy Rain, Quantic Dream has announced the release of a new game called Beyond: Two Souls. Academy Award nominee Ellen Page, famous for her role as a pregnant teenager in Juno and the architect student in Inception, voices a woman named Jodie Holmes who appears to have a psychic connection to an entity named Ivan.  Hunted for her power, the game follows fifteen years of her life in which the gamers actions and decisions will influence the course of her history. The trailer promises a […]

    E3: The Last of Us and Beyond…

    If there was ever a time that I am excited about being a Playstation owner, it is now. After following E3, I’ve come to the conclusion that we’re in for a rough and hopefully extraordinary ride. Creators of Heavy Rain, Quantic Dream has announced the release of a new game called Beyond: Two Souls. Academy Award nominee Ellen Page, famous for her role as a pregnant teenager in Juno and the architect student in Inception, voices a woman named Jodie Holmes who appears to have a psychic connection to an entity named Ivan.  Hunted for her power, the game follows fifteen years of her life in which the gamers actions and decisions will influence the course of her history. The trailer promises a […]

    Continue Reading...

  • Anyone that knows me, knows I love FPS games. Not the campaign mind you, but the online multiplayer. Yes Modern Warfare did actually have a great single player campaign, but great single player campaigns and the COD franchise aren’t exactly hand in hand. So why is there such emphasis on the single player campaign from Treyarch? Rumor circulating about it claims that certain missions will be one shot deals where dieing will actually affect the storyline. A page obviously swiped from the Heavy Rain playbook. But does anyone care? Never mind the massive plot holes, like characters that died in Black Ops mysteriously being alive. Or the juxtaposition of flipping from normal combat in the 70’s and 80’s to futuristic […]

    Black Ops 2: Can We Trust Treyarch?

    Anyone that knows me, knows I love FPS games. Not the campaign mind you, but the online multiplayer. Yes Modern Warfare did actually have a great single player campaign, but great single player campaigns and the COD franchise aren’t exactly hand in hand. So why is there such emphasis on the single player campaign from Treyarch? Rumor circulating about it claims that certain missions will be one shot deals where dieing will actually affect the storyline. A page obviously swiped from the Heavy Rain playbook. But does anyone care? Never mind the massive plot holes, like characters that died in Black Ops mysteriously being alive. Or the juxtaposition of flipping from normal combat in the 70’s and 80’s to futuristic […]

    Continue Reading...

  • Model Scenery: Matching Realistic Rock Colors and Patterns

    Continue Reading...