Monthly Archives: November 2009

Dragon Age: Origins

First off, we weren’t going to get this game.  I wasn’t totally thrilled with the trailers I’d seen (I thought the graphics looked dated).  The wife was thinking between WoW, Lotro, occasionally Warhammer, when would she get a chance to play?  And it’s $50.00.

But there we were, in Best Buy, and thinking (Logitech G35 headset already under one arm), “Eh, why not.  It’s supposed to be pretty good.”

And I’ve got to say, YOW!  It’s really much, much better than I was expecting.  The graphics are over the top really, really nice.  The fire effects, the armor pieces, the environments, they all look spectacular.

You’ve heard of the Uncanny Valley?  You won’t find it on this map.  Oh, the old people look a little odd, but for the most part, the people look really very nice and varied.  Hardest to make well typically, the Dwarf women looked really nice and pleasant.  Generally, the faces are incredibly good looking.  If you can imagine what’s “good looking” you can make that face.

Story wise, I’ll admit, we did not finish the game.  Not even in the slightest.  What we did, the wife and I, was play through several of the opening sequences.  Each of the races and class backgrounds, and I’m assuming sex as well, has it’s own storyline.  Play a Human and you start out the son of a noble.  Play a Dwarf and you can be a noble, or a ruffian.  Play a wood elf and you start out harrassing the hapless humans.  Play a City Elf and you are on the rough side of town, and the humans are out to make your life a living hell.  (Because Humans are punks that way.)

The Human start was normal enough.  What you’d expect.  That was my first run through.  Next I created a forest, i.e. Dalish, elf.  Interesting.  Very fitting.  (I was shocked at how abusive they were to the humans they’d found.)  I then created a Dwarf to see things from that angle.  I picked the ruffian start and man, this is adult stuff.  Your sister is involved in what???  I really liked his dwarven sidekick.  Guy with black cornrow braids?  Reminded me so much of a Vin Diesel type with his attitude, both in voice, manner, and appearances, and the humor evident in his eyes.  Now my wife created a Human Mage and she started out someplace completely different.  (And gets hit on by some Templar guy, who would have killed her, not that he’d want to, “But, hey, what are you doing later?”)  Then she created a City Elf woman, and the story she went through… Wow.  (Her story explains why elves would sooner shoot a Human dead than humor them.)  That’s some heavy hardcore stuff.  Speaking of which, the feather’s on Morrigan’s shoulder armor look incredible.

But I haven’t mentioned the blood.  It’s everywhere.  I mean, get the plastic sheeting out, Patrick Bateman’s coming to visit.  It’s just over the freaking top.  Even arachnids spout blood like some italian fountain and the stuff gets everywhere.  Well, everywhere on you, the corpse, and then forms a puddle under the body.  (Everything else is, thankfully, still pristine.)  The blood is way, way, way over the top.

Now we also haven’t got to the noody caboody parts yet, and the “sex,” so who knows how well done that is.  (Tasteful, or like the blood, off the wall and into the realm of teenage boy fantasies.)

There’s some very adult language and situations, and a lot of blood, but, so far, it’s turned out to be well worth the price.  We give it two thumbs up.


Posted by on November 9, 2009 in Musings


Ahead by a Century

Ahead by a Century

I don’t know why exactly, but I love this song by the Tragically Hip, a Canadian group.

I first heard them, this song, listening to Iceberg on Sirius radio.  After seeing the cool video on YouTube I was wondering if I’d like the rest of their music as much.  (Oddly, sadly, no.  Ahead by a Century remains the singular favorite of mine of theirs.)

“Ahead By A Century”

First we’d climb a tree and maybe then we’d talk
Or sit silently and listen to our thoughts
With illusions of someday casting a golden light
No dress rehearsal, this is our life
That’s when the hornet stung me and I had a feverish dream
With revenge and doubt tonight we smoke them out

You are ahead by a century

Stare in the morning shroud and then the day began
I tilted your cloud, you tilted my hand
Rain falls in real time and rain fell through the night
No dress rehearsal, this is our life

That’s when the hornet stung me and I had a serious dream
With revenge and doubt tonight, we smoked them out

You are ahead by a century
But this is our life and disappointing you is getting me down.

I think the video is great.  Grainy, artsy, dark.  It’s “light” in the right place, when he’s with his girl in the tree, and then dark, and getting darker afterwards, as she’s doing dangerous things and the group is arriving in the car.  And she knows what’s going on.  You see her seeing him begin to doubt and smiling at him to assure him that everything’s fine.  But it isn’t.  She fiddles with her ring.  She knows they’re coming.  Is she ahead by a century in figuring out life’s tragedies?  Or is there something else going on that I’m not hip enough to get?  Regardless, I love the guitar work and the tone.

So, man, what’s this all about?  This isn’t Facebook.  This isn’t a musical interests blog.  This is a World of Warcraft blog.

Well it sure is.

So there I was, dual speccing my third character.  My Druid, Greenclaw.  He’s been Feral for a long, long, very long time.  And there’s this thing with Anzu, and how you need to heal the Eagle totem… I’ve said too much.  Anyway, I dual specced him into a Tree, i.e. Resto Spec.  But I’d never healed with a Druid before.  I’ve got several HoTs, several direct heals, and I took the glyph selections from Talent Chic as well as a tank-oriented healer talent spec.  I dropped some gold in the Auction House for the i187 healing/caster stuff.  I picked up a ring, and then the Argent Dawn ring.  I crafted myself a Faces of Doom for my off-hand, and grabbed the caster dagger from the Tournament quartermaster.  (Sweet that it’s a Darnassian dagger design.)  And also the caster neck and belt from them as well.  In short, I dropped a ton of mats, seals, and gold, to do it as best I could on a short moment’s notice.  I must be resto NOW.  (Actually, in Feral form, as I tried clearing around Anzu’s summoning spot, the Heroic Level trash mobs thrashed me.  Soloing in normal mode was one thing.  Soloing in Heroic mode, in crafted blues and a couple i200 epics?  Very different indeed.)

But, with the advent of the cross-server PUG, maybe I can start from the beginning, Utgarde Keep, something like that, and learn how to heal.

(My wife’s a druid too, so, together, Heroic Setthik Halls, and Anzu, and more importantly, the Raven God as a mount, shouldn’t be impossible.)

Dude, what’s that have to do with the music lead-in?  What does Anzu have to do with Ahead by a Century?

The two are related in that most “LFG’s” I see in general chat are LFG for Heroic TOC.  Where the hell are the regular folks?  The only people raiding are done with Ulduar?  I’ve never even looked inside.  :/

Is everyone ahead of me, gear/progression, by a century?

(How else could I talk about a video I like and dual speccing into Resto for seemingly my own purposes???)

Anyway.  And since life is fairly fun afterall, let me leave you with Vampire Weekend’s A-Punk.  Makes me wish I was back in UofM, Munich Campus, drinking beer in the Boot Room again, this playing on the jukebox…

We were otherwise listening to Men Without Hats’s Safety Dance back then. 

Way before Heigen stole it.

Ah, those were nights!

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Posted by on November 3, 2009 in Druids, Musings, Raids


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