Have You Ever Heard of…Peter Hollens?

Aaand it’s been a while.  I blame that on three things…

1. I was on vacation for a while.  I intended to get a bunch of work done, but really just became background vegetation in the story of my own life for a week.

2. I was doing a bunch of research and such for my latest WIP which I hope to have finished by October 25 (it is a sentimental deadline because the timing of the story would be October 25th, if it was set in the modern-day).

3. And I’ve been sick for about a week, too.  Along with my wife, who was supposed to be caring for my wussy-ass, but got even sicker than me and my corpse had to take care of her.

You can read all three of those points in simpler terms, too, if you have an issue with your attention span:

1. I’m a…

2. Lazy…

3. Douche!

What? Nine Thousand?!

Seriously, I’m surprised I had 9 views in 2012.  I’m getting near 50,000 views.  Who are you people?

Soo…I figured my last few posts before dying and disappearing from the face of the earth were about the games we’ve made (more behind the scenes stuff from Dynasty Heroes is coming; and I believed I’ve figured out my audio issue, too) and a few political things.  So today it’s going to be some nonsensical fan-girling.  Err, in my case fan-boying. If you aren’t familiar with Peter Hollens, take a little trip over to his YouTube Channel or to one of the numerous places that sell his songs so you can buy them all.  He does A Capella covers, and a few covers with other singers and instrumentalists, and even has an original song or two (Sleepwalking is one of my favorite songs of all time).  His new album is available for pre-order now.  I’m a huge fan of his.

Not like, this is on my wall with lipstick imprints kind of fan. I just listen to his music almost non-stop.

Not like, this is on my wall with lipstick imprints kind of fan. I just listen to his music almost non-stop.

Well I’m sure you also know, if you’ve followed me for any real period of time, that I am also a huge fan of the game Mount&Blade.  And I was playing one of the mods for Mount&Blade: Warband, called 1257AD.  As you can imagine it’s based in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia Minor during the year 1257.  I was just screwing around and I wound up hitting the randomize button on the character face-creation screen.  I wound up with a character that looks almost disturbingly like a sour-faced version of Peter Hollens.

I have named him Sir Peter of Hollensberg.

I have named him Sir Peter of Hollensberg.

Hair color’s a little off, and his nose might be a bit too wide.  But overall I think it’s rather likeable to him.  I know he’s a gamer, too, I wonder if he’s ever played Mount&Blade?  If he has, I wonder if he’s found this particular arrangement of facial choices and played as himself?  If you’d like a side-by-side comparison, I scruffed Sir Peter up a bit…

The hardest part was trying to get him to look in the same direction, actually.

The hardest part was trying to get him to look in the same direction, actually.

And I’m sure we all remember the video he made for the cover he did of Queen’s Don’t Stop Me Now.

Unfortunately there aren't any sweatband items in the game.

Unfortunately there aren’t any sweatband items in the game.

Here he is in full armor, Sir Peter of Hollensberg the Earl of St. Ives!

Peter of Hollensberg

I’m not a nerd; I’m a level 12 A Capella Singer!

And here he is shirtless with his sword in his hands.

Which we all want to see!

Which we all want to see!  Err…wait, what did I just say?

So I’ve been playing as Peter Hollens, I guess.  And Sir Hollens, should you ever find this post…your digital self has a message for you…

Like as in..."Do a legit cover of Carry On My Wayward Son." I can only assume.

Like as in…”Do a legit cover of Carry On My Wayward Son.” I can only assume.

~RCS

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I Am Now Linked In!

That’s right, I’ve finally gotten a LinkedIn profile.

Not a big deal, I suppose, but I did it because I’m going to try to get a writing job with Telltale Games, the makers of the hit Walking Dead series of PC games.  Which I have recently purchased, mind you; from Steam.  It’s not a bad deal…5 episodes for $25.  The first three episodes are up and the last two will be released in the next few months.  That’s equivalent to $5 per episode and each episode is about 2-5 hours long.

That’s way better than Gears of War 2 which was $60 and lasted about 9 hours; maybe 16 if you include the multi-player I put into it.

Although still not quite the deal that Mount&Blade was for me.  $6 for…I dunno, 600+ hours of gameplay?  That’s like a penny an hour for gameplay!  Awesome.

~RCS

Still waiting on M&B 2, though…and you’ll know when it comes out because this site will go down for about a month.  Fair warning.

Mount&Blade: Friggin’ Finally!

So, I finally got Mount and Blade: Warband and not only that, but Total War: Shogun 2 showed up on the same day!  Unable to decide which on I wanted to play first, I left it up to my fiancée.  She told me to play Shogun first, so I did.

Little did she realize, both Warband and Shogun are computer games.  She thought she had one-upped me by getting me to play a console game, when in reality they’re both computer games.

So we still have to share the computer so that she can play her Facebook games and play Gaia Online.  So needless to say, I didn’t get to play it at the first opportunity.  She had a bunch of stuff to do in retaliation for being attacked by someone in this little Backyard Monsters game that she plays on Gaia.

I mentioned that her defenses looked a little week and spread thin and that was probably the reason the guy who had attacked her had done so well.  So she decided to hire an Independent Military Contractor to help rearrange her base: Me.

I instructed her on where to put her buildings, arranging her resource-producing buildings in a ring around her base’s central command center.  I told her that the resource buildings will act as the last-line of defense against losing her command center, which basically results in immediate defeat.

At that point we put her long-range defensive towers in amongst the resource buildings, which confused her.  She asked why the stronger and longer-range weapons weren’t put out on the last line of defense where they could shoot at things before they even made it into the facility.

I told her that they could shoot over the things placed in front of them, so the buildings we put in front of the long-range defensive towers, like the short-range cannon towers, will act as a wall before the enemy can take out that sniper cannon tower.

With the towers in place to protect the inner, and outer, buildings of the base…we placed the tertiary buildings such as her monster hatchery that produces monsters and the housing where they are kept (monsters are attack-only, they just get killed when the base is attacked for some reason, rather than defend it), and her catapult to fling monsters at an enemy to attack them.  All things she doesn’t need to rebuild the base if it is damaged, all mostly offensive buildings: If the base is damaged, we can still fix it but can’t attack.  Unlike when I came in where she was screwed and struggling to rebuild the damaged parts to full efficiency.

Then we placed a surrounding wall around all the buildings and put the short-range cannons along this wall.  Unfortunately a cap limit on how many sections of wall you can build left an opening surrounding her housing, making them prime targets for an attack.

So we mined it with a bunch of booby traps.  People will send their monsters in to attack through the open angle and get laid to waste by the covering fire of a cannon, a sniper tower, an electro-shock rail gun kind of tower, and a bunch of land mines.

She has since fought off three attacks with minimal to no damage and laid waste to the guy who attacked her three times, leveling up to the #2 ranking among her friend’s list (she was struggling in fourth and trying to reclaim third place when I started to help her).

With all that done…I started my installation of Shogun at a little after 2 in the morning.  First it installed Steam and forced me to make a Steam account.  Then I had to restart the disc to get it to install the actual game.

It told me the installation would take 29 minutes.  So I spent some time with my little wifey woman reading Black Bird with her, and then went back to the computer just as it said to put Disc 2 in.  I switched discs and it told me it would be another 19 minutes…so I bothered my sweetie-pie a little more.

Finally it was all done and I tried to start the game, at which point it told it had to download an update and it would take 11 minutes.  So I let the wife play her little Backyard Monster game again for a bit while it downloaded in the background.

By the time everything was said and done…it was a quarter ‘till four in the morning.  I started the game up and only then realized: Nope, I’m in more of a Warband mood, anyway.

So…at about five after four in the morning, I installed Warband.  That took about fifteen seconds.  Then I went to bed…maybe tonight I’ll actually get to play something.

~RCS

Mount & Blade: Redux

Once again, I have purchased Mount&Blade: Warband, this time from Amazon.com.  Along with it, I also purchased Total War: Shogun 2.  I loved the first game and a revamped and improved edition is just up my alley.  Hell, one of the big reasons I wanted to upgrade from the regular Mount&Blade to Warband is because of a Samurai mod for Warband.

We’ll see how well these two attempts work out and we’ll see which one gets here first.  My money’s on Shogun, because I’ve already gotten the shipping confirmation, but it’s still too early to tell for sure.

~RCS

Mount&Blade: Refund

I can hardly believe it!  I complained to the seller that sent me Penumbra: Black Plague instead of Mount&Blade: Warband (because they sound so similar, after all) and you know the crazy thing?  They didn’t ask me any questions, no clarifications, admittedly no formal apology either, but that’s okay.  Why am I okay with it all?  The man who has a list of companies he hates on his flash drive so that he can always remember if there’s anyone in the world he doesn’t want to do business with, even if he suffers from trauma-induced amnesia.

Because they didn’t fight me about it, they didn’t even ask me to send the wrong game back.  They just refunded my money and let it go.  And I’m okay with that.  I may even break Penumbra open and give it a play through.  I wasn’t that interested in it when I received it (naturally) or even when I read the box.  But when I described it to you fine people as a mix between F.E.A.R. (a series of games I really like, especially the first one) and Alan Wake (a game that sounds like a game I would like, even though I’ve never had the luxury of playing it), I thought about what that meant…and decided I kind of wanted to play it.

Not right now though, I still have a new copy of Mount&Blade: Warband coming.  I shall update on when it comes…or if it takes too long and I start playing the copy of Warcraft III: Battle Chest Edition that I got from the Walmart clearance bin yesterday.

~RCS

M&M&B: Mount and Blade, Eminem Edition

Well…’caught a snag in the whole, “I bought Mount&Blade: Warband” plan.  The company I bought it from is apparently full of illiterate codpieces and they sent me Penumbra: Black Plague, instead.

Don’t worry, I’ve never heard of it, either.  It seems to be a mix between Alan Wake and the FEAR games; but then again of course, I haven’t opened the box, because it’s not the game I had any interest in buying.

So far we are in day 3 of waiting for the company to respond to me.  Checking their feedback (I bought the game on Half.com) they seem to have a problem with replying to customers.

That’s fine…another couple days and I’ll just a file a report through Half.com that I want my money back.  I’ll buy Warband from someone else and get Penumbra for free, hmph!

 

Anyway, let me tell you about my quandary with Peanut M&Ms.  I don’t like them…I never have.  I was never a big fan of M&Ms to begin with, there were always other types of candy I’d rather have as a child, but M&Ms were okay.

That being said I especially hated Peanut M&Ms!  Why, though, you might ask?  After all, I love peanuts and M&Ms were at least tolerable, if not good.

Simple…because I don’t like my food mixed.  Yeah, I’m one of those people.  I don’t like lettuce or tomatoes on my sandwiches, but I’ll eat a salad or a tomato sandwich (Bread, Mayo, and tomatoes with a touch of salt).  I love cucumbers, but if they’re on my salad…I pick them off and eat them separately.

I like nuts, particularly peanuts, but I don’t like nuts on or in my food.  Brownies are okay, but not if they have nuts on them, I like carrot cake…again not if it has nuts in it, though.  So Peanut M&Ms were always a bad treat to me.

As a child I would suck the chocolate and candy coating off a peanut M&M and then spit out the peanut.  I’d let the peanuts dry, then eat them later.  I know…it was weird, but at least I didn’t waste ‘em, right?

So a while ago I was staring at a vending machine and I had this terrible, insatiable craving for Peanut M&Ms.  I don’t know why.  Now three months later…I’m eating the things like they’re Final Fantasy Potions and I’m fighting the cheap-ass last boss.

I can’t get enough of the frickin’ things.  In three months’ time I’ve spent about $10 a week, on average, on buying $1 bags of peanut M&Ms (2-3 bags a day at times).  Which is okay, I budget about $2 day for vending machine purchases and I’ve been under budget lately, so right now I’m doing good.

There are also little quarter candy machines at the place where I work.  One day, having only 50 cents on me…not enough to buy an actual bag from the real machines, I got a quarter’s worth of Peanut M&Ms.  It was a handful of the tasty little bastards.

This got me thinking…the bag only gives me 2-3 handfuls and costs 4 times as much.  So, once I had gotten some more cash and coinage, I bought a bag and it gave me 21 M&Ms for $1.00.  Then I put a quarter in the little machine and got 10 M&Ms for 25 cents.

Now I carry around a sandwich baggy and hit the quarter machine when I want some.  Eventually I’ll just get around to buying the giant Halloween-size bags in bulk and just fill up ziplock bags with Peanut M&Ms.

~RCS

…that is if I can ever get under budget again on my stupid vending cravings.

Mount&Blade

I was shopping at a Half Price Books store and came across a section where they had computer games.  One of them sounded really cool and it was only $6, so I decided, after two hours of roaming the store and buying $60 worth of books, to go ahead and get the game.

Needless to say I haven’t read any of the books.  I have, however, played the game almost non-stop for the past three weeks.  The game is called Mount&Blade.  It’s ridiculously enjoyable to me.

You create your own character and must do…umm…well, whatever you want.  That’s right, it’s a completely sandbox game.  There’s no linear storyline, there isn’t even an overarching storyline.

There are character stories in the game though, and numerous quests and goals you can make for yourself.  You can create your own nation, become a mercenary, become a merchant, become a professional tournament fighter, become a bandit, become the loyal knight of a king, or become the rebellious knight of a claimant to the king’s throne.

You can play as a warrior, an archer, a general, a useless clod who hides behind the human meat shields he or she has hired…however you want to do it.

I’ve gone so far as to purchase the stand-alone expansion pack for it called Mount&Blade: Warband.  It has new features like…courting and marrying noble ladies, holding feasts, and putting your chosen heroes in control of the regions you’ve conquered.

This game is what Fable wishes it was.  Peter Molyneaux and a team of developers and programmers dream about Mount&Blade in their sleep, and this game was made primarily by a Turkish husband and wife team.  That’s right…two programmers and a handful of designers, composers, and writers.  Their whole company only had about 8 employees.

I’d love to be a designer or even just a writer for Tale Worlds Entertainment, the company that makes Mount&Blade.

But for now I’ll just settle for that copy of Warband that I bought and should have arriving in a couple weeks.

~RCS

 Drooling with anticipation…or hunger.

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