NERDTREK.com Archive

  • Fellow geeks and gamers – we’ve all been in similar situations. Friends of ours that are into sports or dance clubs constantly hound us about being a Hobbit(minus the adventuring) because we never go out to loud venues and, instead, choose the private setting of a home in order to take in the latest Dr. Who  episode or to play Magic: The Gathering with friends. For too long geeks have been misunderstood and mislabeled as self-chosen social outcasts. And there may be some geeks out there that DO choose to live completely off the social grid. But that is not who I speak for…. I speak for the geeks that want a place to call our own. I am talking […]

    The Rise of Geek Bars: Dungeons & Drafts

    Fellow geeks and gamers – we’ve all been in similar situations. Friends of ours that are into sports or dance clubs constantly hound us about being a Hobbit(minus the adventuring) because we never go out to loud venues and, instead, choose the private setting of a home in order to take in the latest Dr. Who  episode or to play Magic: The Gathering with friends. For too long geeks have been misunderstood and mislabeled as self-chosen social outcasts. And there may be some geeks out there that DO choose to live completely off the social grid. But that is not who I speak for…. I speak for the geeks that want a place to call our own. I am talking […]

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  • The Expanded Shaman marks the second book in Open Designs’ New Paths series. Anyone paying attention is well aware of how well received the first installment (The Spell Less Ranger) was, and what type of pressure that places upon this book right off the bat. Question here then is, did Marc Radle have another bullet in the chamber? So let us take a look. Weighing in at 16 pages, with 10 pages of new material, 2 sheets for tracking wild shape and a spirit guide, cover, OGL, credit and ad (which would not fully load in my version of this PDF). Artwork is handled by the talented Rick Hershey, as those familiar with his style can easily recognize from the […]

    Open Design’s New Paths 2: Expanded Shaman

    The Expanded Shaman marks the second book in Open Designs’ New Paths series. Anyone paying attention is well aware of how well received the first installment (The Spell Less Ranger) was, and what type of pressure that places upon this book right off the bat. Question here then is, did Marc Radle have another bullet in the chamber? So let us take a look. Weighing in at 16 pages, with 10 pages of new material, 2 sheets for tracking wild shape and a spirit guide, cover, OGL, credit and ad (which would not fully load in my version of this PDF). Artwork is handled by the talented Rick Hershey, as those familiar with his style can easily recognize from the […]

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  • So, into my greedy little hands came a copy of the newest addition to the #30 series from Rite publishing, #30 Variant Dragons….let’s just get something out of the way right up front, I love Dragons…period. I have loved them since childhood, and can accredit them as one of the themes that drew me to roleplaying, so there was no small amount of happiness on my part when I saw this PDF. Now, that we have that out of the way, and we all realize the pressure this innocent PDF is under to impress me and not destroy my faith in a certain breed of reptilian awesomeness…let us see what’s going on with the latest #30 offering shall we? Weighing […]

    Rite Publishing’s #30 Variant Dragons

    So, into my greedy little hands came a copy of the newest addition to the #30 series from Rite publishing, #30 Variant Dragons….let’s just get something out of the way right up front, I love Dragons…period. I have loved them since childhood, and can accredit them as one of the themes that drew me to roleplaying, so there was no small amount of happiness on my part when I saw this PDF. Now, that we have that out of the way, and we all realize the pressure this innocent PDF is under to impress me and not destroy my faith in a certain breed of reptilian awesomeness…let us see what’s going on with the latest #30 offering shall we? Weighing […]

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  • 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 […]

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  • With a weight of 15 pages (cover and OGL eating two of those) this PDF starts us out with an absolutely gorgeous cover piece of art from Lin Bo. The iconography of this cover piece definitely convey the sense of ancient secrets of power. Internally, the artwork is B&W, with pieces ranging from good to OK. This PDF continues a new look from the SGG camp for layout, going with a full page cover and dual column with embedded artwork formatting approach. Editing and spelling both appeared to be excellent, nothing really jumped out and caught my attention. Building an entirely new game mechanic, and form of magic, from three spells essentially would be daunting to say the least. It’s […]

    SGG Power Word Spells, Lore of the First Language

    With a weight of 15 pages (cover and OGL eating two of those) this PDF starts us out with an absolutely gorgeous cover piece of art from Lin Bo. The iconography of this cover piece definitely convey the sense of ancient secrets of power. Internally, the artwork is B&W, with pieces ranging from good to OK. This PDF continues a new look from the SGG camp for layout, going with a full page cover and dual column with embedded artwork formatting approach. Editing and spelling both appeared to be excellent, nothing really jumped out and caught my attention. Building an entirely new game mechanic, and form of magic, from three spells essentially would be daunting to say the least. It’s […]

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  • Weighing in at 52 pages, the latest oriental themed book from Rite publishing brings us an extremely detailed look into the Samurai, and all that it means to incorporate them as a class into your campaign world, both as a GM and as a player. Of those 52 pages 8 are eaten by the usual suspects (cover, OGL, ads and and appendix (for unfamiliar terms ), leaving us with 44 pages to cover the new material. Formatting follows the dual column approach, with embedded full color artwork throughout the book, and more than a few rather large pieces of said artwork. Each page is treated with a bamboo style framework, further invoking the feel of an old world fantasy oriental […]

    Rite Publishing Way of the Samurai

    Weighing in at 52 pages, the latest oriental themed book from Rite publishing brings us an extremely detailed look into the Samurai, and all that it means to incorporate them as a class into your campaign world, both as a GM and as a player. Of those 52 pages 8 are eaten by the usual suspects (cover, OGL, ads and and appendix (for unfamiliar terms ), leaving us with 44 pages to cover the new material. Formatting follows the dual column approach, with embedded full color artwork throughout the book, and more than a few rather large pieces of said artwork. Each page is treated with a bamboo style framework, further invoking the feel of an old world fantasy oriental […]

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  • Po’Kesteros, the latest offering in the Faces of the Tarnished Souk line shows just what can truly be done with the excellent Luckbringer class, in a very well executed manner. Following the standard Rite format of the dual column with embedded artwork (all B&W with two of the pieces being close up details taken from the excellent cover piece from Kimagu, and one being the cover piece from the second book in the Luckbringer series – 10 Luckbringer Feats. Editing/Spelling all looked good, and I found no stumbling blocks to interrupt the flow of reading or understanding, which is always a good thing. After OGL, credits and the rest, we are left with a solid 11 pages of material covering […]

    Latest Tarnished Souk, Po’Kesterous the Lostling

    Po’Kesteros, the latest offering in the Faces of the Tarnished Souk line shows just what can truly be done with the excellent Luckbringer class, in a very well executed manner. Following the standard Rite format of the dual column with embedded artwork (all B&W with two of the pieces being close up details taken from the excellent cover piece from Kimagu, and one being the cover piece from the second book in the Luckbringer series – 10 Luckbringer Feats. Editing/Spelling all looked good, and I found no stumbling blocks to interrupt the flow of reading or understanding, which is always a good thing. After OGL, credits and the rest, we are left with a solid 11 pages of material covering […]

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  • The first thing one can not escape when scanning through the 488 pages of Goodman Games Dungeon Crawl Classic (DCC) Core Rule Book is the art. It’s everywhere, and I do mean, everywhere. The TOC is laid out inside art panels held up by characters, credits, play tester thank yous, designer notes, all tucked into the artwork, that is…for lack of better explanation, straight out of the 70’s. Seriously, this IS your daddy’s artwork folks lol. The art instantly took me back to my childhood and the style of RPG games that were on the shelves at my local game-store when I first got into role playing as a hobby. Is it cheezy art? Oh yeah, but in all the […]

    Goodman Games Delivers With Dungeon Crawl Classic

    The first thing one can not escape when scanning through the 488 pages of Goodman Games Dungeon Crawl Classic (DCC) Core Rule Book is the art. It’s everywhere, and I do mean, everywhere. The TOC is laid out inside art panels held up by characters, credits, play tester thank yous, designer notes, all tucked into the artwork, that is…for lack of better explanation, straight out of the 70’s. Seriously, this IS your daddy’s artwork folks lol. The art instantly took me back to my childhood and the style of RPG games that were on the shelves at my local game-store when I first got into role playing as a hobby. Is it cheezy art? Oh yeah, but in all the […]

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  • Weighing in at 15 pages (Front cover -1 page, credit/PID – 1 page, 2 pages of tracking sheets, OGL) we’ve got roughly 10 pages of new material here to work with. A spell-less Ranger….this class has long been plagued by the fact that whereas any class tossing spells about is kinda cool in its own right, the iconic characters who inspired this particular class were men existing by their own skill, and their ability to utilize the lands around them to some amazing feats. I’ve seen a few attempts to go spell-less with a ranger in the past, and it has always come out looking very much like a pigeon-holed fighter….so let us take a look and see if Mr. […]

    Open Design’s New Path – The Expanded Spell-less Ranger

    Weighing in at 15 pages (Front cover -1 page, credit/PID – 1 page, 2 pages of tracking sheets, OGL) we’ve got roughly 10 pages of new material here to work with. A spell-less Ranger….this class has long been plagued by the fact that whereas any class tossing spells about is kinda cool in its own right, the iconic characters who inspired this particular class were men existing by their own skill, and their ability to utilize the lands around them to some amazing feats. I’ve seen a few attempts to go spell-less with a ranger in the past, and it has always come out looking very much like a pigeon-holed fighter….so let us take a look and see if Mr. […]

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  • Weighing in at 52 pages, with 6 pages going to the basics (cover/OGL/etc.), 1 page going to a fully linked TOC, which I love to see, as sometimes I don’t want to waste my screen space with the bookmarks (which this PDF is fully stacked on as well by the way) dashboard open. One nice touch added throughout the PDF is a link BACK to the TOC, so that if you are using it in-place of the bookmarks, you actually can navigate via this method. So, counting with me? We’re down to 45 pages currently, from there we have 15 pages of maps…yes, 15. Two of those are the same full ship, dissected by levels (with a style that reminded […]

    Grave Undertakings: The Ship of Fools

    Weighing in at 52 pages, with 6 pages going to the basics (cover/OGL/etc.), 1 page going to a fully linked TOC, which I love to see, as sometimes I don’t want to waste my screen space with the bookmarks (which this PDF is fully stacked on as well by the way) dashboard open. One nice touch added throughout the PDF is a link BACK to the TOC, so that if you are using it in-place of the bookmarks, you actually can navigate via this method. So, counting with me? We’re down to 45 pages currently, from there we have 15 pages of maps…yes, 15. Two of those are the same full ship, dissected by levels (with a style that reminded […]

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  • The Vanguard….. I’ve read through the revised edition of this Genius Guide, planning out a character concept here, an NPC idea there….in short, I did what I always do, I read through the material and tried to decide for myself, would I use this concept in my game. The answer is yes. In a heartbeat. Yes, from a purely meta-gamer point of view this is a concept that has now been done three times over; the archon, the magus and of course the vanguard itself, so why the need right? Simple answer, because there’s more than one class swinging a sword isn’t there? We play in a game that is built on versatility and option. It is that wealth of […]

    Genius Guide to The Vanguard gets an Overhaul

    The Vanguard….. I’ve read through the revised edition of this Genius Guide, planning out a character concept here, an NPC idea there….in short, I did what I always do, I read through the material and tried to decide for myself, would I use this concept in my game. The answer is yes. In a heartbeat. Yes, from a purely meta-gamer point of view this is a concept that has now been done three times over; the archon, the magus and of course the vanguard itself, so why the need right? Simple answer, because there’s more than one class swinging a sword isn’t there? We play in a game that is built on versatility and option. It is that wealth of […]

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  • In a role-playing game industry flooded with a multitude of time saving tools, Lone Wolf Development has accomplished not only standing out; but setting the standard. For those of you out there not in the know, Lone Wolf Development is the driving creative force behind several different software based tools, including the one this review will be covering: HERO LAB. Now officially speaking, Hero Lab is available for several different game systems ranging from various incarnations of D&D (with 3.5 and 4e available), to Pathfinder, Shadowrun, Call of Cthulu, Savage Worlds and 2nd/3rd editions of Mutant’s and Masterminds all being available as core systems one can purchase for use with this program. Why do I point out the officially speaking […]

    Hero Lab, best GM tool on the market

    In a role-playing game industry flooded with a multitude of time saving tools, Lone Wolf Development has accomplished not only standing out; but setting the standard. For those of you out there not in the know, Lone Wolf Development is the driving creative force behind several different software based tools, including the one this review will be covering: HERO LAB. Now officially speaking, Hero Lab is available for several different game systems ranging from various incarnations of D&D (with 3.5 and 4e available), to Pathfinder, Shadowrun, Call of Cthulu, Savage Worlds and 2nd/3rd editions of Mutant’s and Masterminds all being available as core systems one can purchase for use with this program. Why do I point out the officially speaking […]

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  •   The Secrets of the Inquisitor, the latest offering from Rite publishing in the Secrets of…series weighs in at 23 pages, with a cover, credits page, OGL and one ad, leaving us with 19 pages of new Inquisitor goodness. The formatting follows the standard dual column approach, and where as there are some odd spacing effects from time to time within the text, that while slightly distracting to the eye, they do not in any way detract from the understanding of the material. Artwork is both old and new, stock and original. One of the things that, to me, truly makes Rite’s books stand out from other companies when it comes to the visual aspect, is their usage of artwork […]

    Rite Publishing’s Secrets of the Inquisitor

      The Secrets of the Inquisitor, the latest offering from Rite publishing in the Secrets of…series weighs in at 23 pages, with a cover, credits page, OGL and one ad, leaving us with 19 pages of new Inquisitor goodness. The formatting follows the standard dual column approach, and where as there are some odd spacing effects from time to time within the text, that while slightly distracting to the eye, they do not in any way detract from the understanding of the material. Artwork is both old and new, stock and original. One of the things that, to me, truly makes Rite’s books stand out from other companies when it comes to the visual aspect, is their usage of artwork […]

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  • Weighing in at 33 pages (with front cover, ToC, and just over 2 pages for OGL) this PDF delivers roughly 28 pages of new material for the Legendary series from Purple Duck Games. The sixth book in the series, the focus is on those suits of armor that never fail to inspire the grandest of tales, and the most epic of songs, I speak of course, of Legendary Armor. The suit, found bathed in a beam of sunlight, sequestered away from the world, awaiting that perfect someone, in short that suit we as players all secretly hoped our GM’s would someday place within our path. First thing I noticed looking through this PDF was the inclusion of art for every […]

    Purple Duck Games Delivers Again With Legendary VI: Legendary Armor

    Weighing in at 33 pages (with front cover, ToC, and just over 2 pages for OGL) this PDF delivers roughly 28 pages of new material for the Legendary series from Purple Duck Games. The sixth book in the series, the focus is on those suits of armor that never fail to inspire the grandest of tales, and the most epic of songs, I speak of course, of Legendary Armor. The suit, found bathed in a beam of sunlight, sequestered away from the world, awaiting that perfect someone, in short that suit we as players all secretly hoped our GM’s would someday place within our path. First thing I noticed looking through this PDF was the inclusion of art for every […]

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  • We got it bad.  Check out this keyboard aptly named “Optimus Maximus” The king of keyboards sports every feature you could possible imagine including the ability to program each key individually, display current system stats such as CPU usage on a key, play a gif or screenshot on a key, and blow up the world with the press of a button. This keyboard will strike fear into the heart of your enemies and envy in the fingertips of your friends.

    Keyboard Envy

    We got it bad.  Check out this keyboard aptly named “Optimus Maximus” The king of keyboards sports every feature you could possible imagine including the ability to program each key individually, display current system stats such as CPU usage on a key, play a gif or screenshot on a key, and blow up the world with the press of a button. This keyboard will strike fear into the heart of your enemies and envy in the fingertips of your friends.

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  • Comicon and events like it paved the way for an overall acceptance and admiration for those willing to don costumes and put on make up to play roles outside their ordinary life.  I for one always feel that as soon as the makeup or mask goes on, I really become this other person and adapt a new voice, accent, and mannerisms.  It happens naturally and without any conscious effort, possibly due to my history of running D&D games and acting out the roles of various NPCs since I was eight. As acceptance of wearing adult costumes spreads and more people feel comfortable donning their otherworldly garb, the costume industry blossoms.  Today I wanted to take the time to sit down […]

    Win a Green Lantern Costume!

    Comicon and events like it paved the way for an overall acceptance and admiration for those willing to don costumes and put on make up to play roles outside their ordinary life.  I for one always feel that as soon as the makeup or mask goes on, I really become this other person and adapt a new voice, accent, and mannerisms.  It happens naturally and without any conscious effort, possibly due to my history of running D&D games and acting out the roles of various NPCs since I was eight. As acceptance of wearing adult costumes spreads and more people feel comfortable donning their otherworldly garb, the costume industry blossoms.  Today I wanted to take the time to sit down […]

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  • A month or so ago I shared some hilarious auto-correct blunders with my friends on Facebook.  It ended up being so popular and shared so many times over that I thought it only fair to bring these filthy x-rated gems to your doorstep.  I poise, perched on my toes outside your technologically driven door waiting for a sign.  Oh robot, where doth thou spend thy time?  In the gutter, with an iPhone- seemingly snorting a line.  My amusement you gather as I watch you lather with suds of screen cleaner you beckon me nearer. What the hell was that?  Don’t ask me, just read these hilarious auto-correct screen shots and forget this ever happened!  😛  Enjoy! I hope you laughed […]

    Autocorrect Hilarity

    A month or so ago I shared some hilarious auto-correct blunders with my friends on Facebook.  It ended up being so popular and shared so many times over that I thought it only fair to bring these filthy x-rated gems to your doorstep.  I poise, perched on my toes outside your technologically driven door waiting for a sign.  Oh robot, where doth thou spend thy time?  In the gutter, with an iPhone- seemingly snorting a line.  My amusement you gather as I watch you lather with suds of screen cleaner you beckon me nearer. What the hell was that?  Don’t ask me, just read these hilarious auto-correct screen shots and forget this ever happened!  😛  Enjoy! I hope you laughed […]

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  • It happened again. As Charlie Brown used to say, in the Peanuts strip, “I can’t stand it”. It completely drives me crazy when anyone asks: “So, what do you do for a living?” The question is innocuous enough, and not meant to be other than the kind associated with small talk and introductions.  Small talk shouldn’t be this hard. The person asking has probably just told me they are plumber, a teacher, an associate executive merchandising division manager. Those terms are all fairly easily digestible, and go down easy, like the weather or the traffic coming into town today. My answers always seem to shift from the shallow to the deeper end of the conversation pool in an instant. “Oh, […]

    By way of Introduction

    It happened again. As Charlie Brown used to say, in the Peanuts strip, “I can’t stand it”. It completely drives me crazy when anyone asks: “So, what do you do for a living?” The question is innocuous enough, and not meant to be other than the kind associated with small talk and introductions.  Small talk shouldn’t be this hard. The person asking has probably just told me they are plumber, a teacher, an associate executive merchandising division manager. Those terms are all fairly easily digestible, and go down easy, like the weather or the traffic coming into town today. My answers always seem to shift from the shallow to the deeper end of the conversation pool in an instant. “Oh, […]

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  • I have been without cable TV for over 14 years now.  Well, that’s not entirely true; In the past I lived with roommates that had TV and I would watch on occasion.  What each of these rare occasions reminded me is how annoying the advertising on cable television can be.  After going years without TV and then watching a few ads I actually find myself laughing out loud at the stupidity of mainstream America.  Why do you watch this crap? When television first emerged as a new technology you needed an antenna, or as some of us so affectionally  refer to them- “rabbit ears” to pick up a signal.  Once you harnessed the signal being broadcast you could watch your television programs.  Advertisements helped […]

    Media Players > TV

    I have been without cable TV for over 14 years now.  Well, that’s not entirely true; In the past I lived with roommates that had TV and I would watch on occasion.  What each of these rare occasions reminded me is how annoying the advertising on cable television can be.  After going years without TV and then watching a few ads I actually find myself laughing out loud at the stupidity of mainstream America.  Why do you watch this crap? When television first emerged as a new technology you needed an antenna, or as some of us so affectionally  refer to them- “rabbit ears” to pick up a signal.  Once you harnessed the signal being broadcast you could watch your television programs.  Advertisements helped […]

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  • Top 10 Most dangerous household products #10 Plastic Shopping Bags Plastic lasts forever as can be seen both landfills all over the world and in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.  The GPGP is twice the size of Texas and is full of plastic trash.  It floats 1,000 miles off the coast of California in the Pacific Ocean.  In the USA only 2% of plastic bags are recycled, the other 98% are thrown into the garbage which ends up in landfills or blowing about in the woods.  While on a US tour with my band in 2005 I witnessed towns in the midwest that were so full of garbage that you could see more plastic on the ground than dirt and […]

    Top 10 Most Dangerous household products

    Top 10 Most dangerous household products #10 Plastic Shopping Bags Plastic lasts forever as can be seen both landfills all over the world and in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.  The GPGP is twice the size of Texas and is full of plastic trash.  It floats 1,000 miles off the coast of California in the Pacific Ocean.  In the USA only 2% of plastic bags are recycled, the other 98% are thrown into the garbage which ends up in landfills or blowing about in the woods.  While on a US tour with my band in 2005 I witnessed towns in the midwest that were so full of garbage that you could see more plastic on the ground than dirt and […]

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  • Here is the Skyrim trailer we have been waiting for! The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is due for release on 11-11-11 by Bethesda Softworks and I for one cannot get enough of the details that have been released for this game. This trailer finally contains some actual footage of the game in action. This trailer blew me away! Here’s the good stuff, stop listening to me ramble on and get on with it! Please share this with your friends on Facebook and take a minute to “Like” us while you’re at it! Thanks for supporting NERDTREK.com! How is my Xbox going to handle the load on the poorly designed GPU chips without bursting into flames? No matter, I have ordered […]

    Skyrim Trailer – This is what we’ve been waiting for!

    Here is the Skyrim trailer we have been waiting for! The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is due for release on 11-11-11 by Bethesda Softworks and I for one cannot get enough of the details that have been released for this game. This trailer finally contains some actual footage of the game in action. This trailer blew me away! Here’s the good stuff, stop listening to me ramble on and get on with it! Please share this with your friends on Facebook and take a minute to “Like” us while you’re at it! Thanks for supporting NERDTREK.com! How is my Xbox going to handle the load on the poorly designed GPU chips without bursting into flames? No matter, I have ordered […]

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