Tearaway

I’ve had the Vita since launch, but only recently has it really come into its own.  Between the PS4 coming out and opening the door to crossplay and a lot more games being pushed to it, it really has started to blip on the radars of gamers everywhere.

I have loved the Vita because it did everything I wanted it to do plus a bit more.  I could through music on it, connect with PSN friends even when away or traveling, and having an awesome touch screen really helped.  For that first year, though, the games were a bit lacking.  We had Katamari, Ragnarok, P4: Golden, and Gravity Rush eventually.  These were all awesome and kept me occupied, but were either finished to early or never really had an end point.

Trevor got me Tearaway for Christmas since it was something I had been raving about for a few months now.  I put it in my Vita immediately and started to play and quite simply wondered where this game was at launch.  It was perfect for the little system.  It used all the features for combat or puzzles and really immersed you in the game. Like literally put you in there.  ‘You’ are the sun.  Every time you see the sun, you see your face in the middle of it.

The way that this is used to craft a story is so friendly and welcoming it is brilliant.  It reminds you very much of the narration in Little Big Planet, but with a wider range and more depth.  Being able to customize your character, called Atoi for the female version or Iota for the male, is fun and something you can waste hours doing.  Customizing the environment is equally engrossing.  

I’m about 5 hours into the game and while it is a big improvement over Little Big Planet, it still has issues with occasionally weird directions.  I come to this section where there is a log blocking Atoi’s path.  Under the log are the symbols for poking the rear touch pad in order to break through and move things.  I try getting through to move the log.  I try lifting the log.  The instruction on what to do with these symbols keeps appearing, but no farther assistance to do with the log.  I continue to fiddle with it for 30 minutes before I get my fingers in just the right spot where it lifts the log.  So then I try tossing it aside and it just falls back down.  I spend another 10 minutes trying to get that spot again, finally do and then figure I need to finagle Atoi with the joystick to walk under the log while I’m still holding it up vita the rear touchpad.

I’m in my 20s and my coordination was just not liking this.  I can’t imagine giving it to a kid.  Then again, maybe kid hands would be better on the touch screen.

Overall, the game is great.  It really shows off all the Vita’s capabilities while being creative and colorful.  There are a few glitches and finicky items, but with some patience you can get through it.  It is worth a pick up with your gift cards from family who didn’t know what to get you or picking up for yourself as an after holiday’s gift.

Been Isolated

Sorry I haven’t been keeping up.  Honestly, I’ve been a bit isolated.  Some of it is self-imposed other parts are more dependent on things going on.

I had another massive surgery on my foot, so I haven’t fully walked in over two months.  Even before that walking was painful and exasperating due to the pain and swelling.  I hate being the weak link so I stopped going to as many events and being as social.  Then at the end of November, Trevor lost his job, so I’ve been determined not to go anywhere and spend money.  It is also one of those times where I’m not sure if life is going to be uprooted or not, due to his job loss and possible job prospects, so I just start to cut ties with people…not talking, not showing interest, not caring.

It probably isn’t good for me.

Most of my MTG experiences have been on DoTP and a little bit of MTGO/MODO…which was awful. Hopefully when it comes back it won’t be so bad.  I went to GPDC and did side events and saw people I normally wouldn’t, but did not play in the main event as I did not have a Legacy deck. The events I did play in I did well, but never quite made it to first.  Didn’t expect much considering how long it had been since I had held cards in my hand.

I’ll probably be at an IQ this weekend since it is relatively close and free.  Trevor and I both have cards to play with, so we had may as well.

I’ve been playing quite a bit of League as well, trying to get better in the jungle and top lanes since those were my weakest positions previously.  Until I have a multitude of champions that I can play in all positions down pat, I don’t think I will do much in the ranked system.  That and school which I have to do nearly 5 nights a week…

Anyway, hopefully I’ll be more interactive here in the future.  Might use this as an outlet for a bit.  Might post some fiction type items.  Probably do some tournament type reports.  Probably get some PS4 game reviews up…maybe even some for Vita…or go back and do more comic book reviews… I don’t know.  Tell me what you want to see

It is working again!

Not sure why, but WordPress was being ridiculous for the past week…so I didn’t post.  It would erase stuff and freeze, it just got to be fusterating.

So anyway, I hope everyone’s gift giving celebrations were good.  I say this because in my family we celebrate two.

First we went to Trevor’s family’s house for Yule.  This consists of watching candles burn for an evening as we hope for good things to come and gift exchanges.  I got lots of good things, like tea and a soft blanket, as well as a thing called a Chatimal, which is a talking hamster.  Trevor gave me a Sherlock shirt and talking Ewok which I adore 😀

We also did a small block draft with his sister and her friend.  I cracked a Huntmaster of Fells as well as Increasing Savagery.  So I had this interesting Junk deck of all over.  It was their first time drafting and I feel that they learned a valuable lesson.  Such as reading what the card does rather than just picking the angel.  Yeah…

Trevor and I also went on a tour of the card shops of the area.  He got some holes filled for his modern deck and I picked up more Lowryn things.  I’m addicted.  If you ever feel the need to get me a gift, just get me that. We saw a few places that were way over priced and I kinda just wanted to flip tables.  On the other hand, we found some really good deals.

We also went to a pet store named Animal Kingdom where they had a rescued Serval...

We also went to a pet store named Animal Kingdom where they had a rescued Serval…

Then we went to my parents.  My mom had just had surgery so it was a much more subdued year in some ways, but in others, it was much busier.  I helped out around the house a lot so she could rest and my dad could take a break, well as much as possible.

One afternoon was spent at my Aunt’s for a family get together.  We didn’t stay long since it was just Trevor, my sister, and I.  I wanted to more so be home helping.  We did stop at a new store in Delaware called Epic Loot and looked through their stuff.  Trevor got some of his Zendikar fetch lands and I got a Beta Grizzly Bear!  OMG I love Grizzly Bears!  Anyway, if you are in the area, they do FNM and such and are just starting out, so stop by and say hi.  They have a fun and growing collection of games, anime, and MTG stuff.  And they are aright on the Bay, so it is also a great place to stop and grab some lunch.  I wind up in that area a lot for motorcycle ride, but I digress.

Who doesn't love greyhounds?

Who doesn’t love greyhounds?

The next day was pretty uneventful.  Brought in some more firewood for my parents and tired out the puppies.  Cleaned and organized.  We had a small gift exchange with our neighbors and Trevor gave me one of my other presents, which was the first season of Sherlock on Blu-Ray!  Yes!  Then we had dinner and watched said Sherlock before I started falling asleep on the couch.

Dia is a ham...

Dia is a ham…

Christmas morning I was the first one up as per usual.  But at the same time, it wasn’t because I wanted presents, it was because I wanted to make sure Mom and Dad didn’t need help with things around the house.  So I wound up working on a bunch of chores as Trev and my sister slowly came around.

Then we did gifts.  I got my gorgeous gaming bag I wanted to take to

This bag is so awesome!

This bag is so awesome!

tournaments from Level 8 Seamstress as well as season 2 of Sherlock and Season 1 of Merlin.  Which my mother tried to promptly steal.  She is apparently in love with Arthur.  Yeah.  Also got a cheshire cat, some candles and new cooking stuff.  Dad got me gift cards for Best Buy, so I’ll get myself a new PS3 controller since mine is dying slowly.

There was also a cat prowling for boxes and bags…

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So overall, my first Christmas as part of a new family officially, and having one of my own, was excellent.  Here is to hoping to many more!

I’m just becoming sadder and sadder…

I used to be really proud to call myself a girl gamer.  It wasn’t about the individuality or this badge of honor type thing, it was just that is what I did.  I was a girl who gamed.  Yet, when I go to so many places I see more and more girl gamers not quite live up to what I see myself as.

I want to be a positive force for all gamers.  I want to show different sides, solutions, and characters.  I want to do well and feel good about myself, without my actions making another feel bad.  I don’t want to guilt trip people into anything.  I want there to be a respectable and varied view of women in gaming.  I want it to be inclusive and celebratory, not dismissive.

Yet, what I get when I read blog posts, take part in all female activities, or look at message board is this massive swing from one side to the other.  I don’t see people who want games to be fun for everyone, but instead this very angry set-up of people who can’t take a step back and evaluate their position.  I get the feeling of people who have issues with you if you don’t have the same view as them.

I get men are bad, boobs are evil, and so on.

No.  That isn’t what I want to see the gaming community develop.  What I want to see is an equal spot for all people who show any interest in games.  I want to see women treated respectfully, but still fit their character.  I want to see the human body that is depicted on that card or in those pixels to be equally enjoyed by all sexes and some of the characters to be incredibly relatable while others maybe not so much.

No, I’m not a feminist. I probably fall into an egalitarian category.  However, I am a female gamer who is incredibly proud of who I am and the fellow gamers I play with.

My view is that perhaps if we start trending towards a greater unified community, these other things will follow.  If we stop making this a gender war and start making this a cohesive effort towards a greater community we might start getting somewhere.  If we start looking past gender, sexuality, race, religion, whatever…imagine how many more people there would be to play with.

Then again, we are gamers.  Cohesive isn’t often our thing.  How ever, determination is, and I’m pretty damned determined.

Wreck-It Ralph and Interesting Look on Gender and Gaming

I took Trevor to go see ‘Wreck-It Ralph’ for his birthday last week.  We both thought the movie was awesome and took a few different messages away from it.  To see what he thought, which was a much more general message and very uplifting, click here!

I was really happy with the way all the characters were done.  I felt that perhaps the love situation was a bit forced, but it is a Disney movie, what can I expect.  I’ve heard some people complain about the progress stopping to explain things, but at the same time I saw people not getting certain reference that to those of us who at one time played in an arcade, so I’m not sure if I really saw that happening.

But, what I enjoyed most, as a female who has played games for a very long time, as the one who has been kicked off games or knocked out of line because I must not really want to play this thing, was the little girl who existed outside of the arcade system.

Yes, her, the one who knew the games well enough to recognize when things were not right.

To me it shows a very large step forward in the video game industry of actually admitting that girls play games.  What a thought, right?  More importantly, she seems to play a wide array of games and doesn’t really care if they aren’t meant for girls.  She plays the first person shooter(which Jane Lynch as the lead character is awesome as well), she wants to play the racing competitive game, and she plays the classics.

Yet, as with what happens in games, there is always someone who thinks they are better and she is denied the chance to play some of these games.  That does not become a deterrent though.  She simply moves to something else.  She knows that there is nothing that really stops her from playing ultimately, the bullies are just a minor stumbling block.  She really is the positive message that people need to see when thinking about girl gamers.

But not just girl gamers.  When thinking about anything that is not the status quo or outside of a stereotype.  I don’t care who you are or what you enjoy doing, as long as you can respect the same about me.  To me, that was the biggest message of this movie…and it was echoed in the plot as well, I feel.

Anyway…what else is in the pipeline for me?  I have some reviewing to do for a deck building game called ‘Shadowrift’, my thoughts on this arc of Captain Marvel, and still trying to figure out a deck to play for the Open in December that is not Bant Midrange.

Extra Life 2012 Recap: LoL, MtG, B-Lands, Catan, OH MY!

That was intense.  I started my 24 hour marathon session off with Friday Night Magic, in which I planned on playing constructed but had a deck that was all hobbled in ten million pieces.

So we switch to draft!  Hurrah!  I’m starting to get a hang for how to draf RtR. It is much different then the core set and for me requires some pre-planning.  At my table we had three people drafting Rakdos, including myself.  Yet, each of us wound up with a different third color.  For instance, I had a mainly Rakdos deck that included a lot of Izzet tricks.  And Stab Wound.  I love Stab Wound.

But, now that I have really gotten to to know the cards, and the mechanics that work together well, I’m feeling much better.  I plan on continuing forth to this Friday at the GPT Philadelphia.

So I went home, caught some light Z’s and then picked it right back up bright and early in the morning.  Loaded decks into Cockatrice, started playing League, updated Path of Exile and played that a bit.  Waited for Trevor to get up so I could deck test and started to do that. Made adjustments, played more League.  It was nice since I wasn’t playing for super serious I was able to experiment with characters I normally wouldn’t play.  Which is always interesting.

Then I moved out into the living room and started up the PS3 and worked through some more of Persona 4: Arena.  I know have all the characters unlocked!  Yay!  And then I fell asleep with two cats on my lap and a controller in my hands.  WTF life?

Trevor woke me up though.  With lovely pizza and wings!  Oh how much better could the day be!?  Borderlands 2, he asks.  WELL DUH?  So it then becomes the loot fest until about 1 am.  It was ridiculous.  There was also my wonderful husband making chocolate chip walnut cookies.  OMG yay.  While he was taking breaks I played some Catan and got my butt whooped by the computer as usual.

This is definitely an event that I will be doing again in the future and I encourage everyone to take part in somehow.  I raise $100 for Children’s Miracle Network and had a lot of fun. While playing League I got a lot of other people interested and spread the word around during chats and stuff.

What to look forward too: This week I want to get some of these comic book reviews done before I pick up the next batch.  Also, Sunday or Monday expect pictures and such from the GP.  If anyone has anyway to simulate sealed online so that I can practice with people that would be great :D.

Spider Queen….Why so naked?

For serious Riot.  We have had enough of the cleavage bound and mid-drift showing females.  It is getting old now.  I understand that on some level, sex sells, but for pete’s sake this is just getting blatantly gross and misogynistic at this point.

I love the game.  I love my minions.  I enjoy the champion mechanics   But right now, If I want to have a female champion that wears clothes I have to go play Leona, Kayle, or a Yordle.  You ruined Morganna by making her anorexic and none of the new females are much better.  Now I can’t play her without having a skin cause I’m just repulsed.

Soraka is the only one that has really been improved upon recently.  And I don’t play her!

I just want an actual woman champion.  Not a sexualized figure, but a character that doesn’t make me feel guilty for my own imperfections every time I see it or give the male players of the game the validation to say women in real life are fat simply because the virtual characters they play with are unhealthy.

I don’t pretend to know the exact answer to this issue, but this is how I feel.  It is honestly why I kinda moved away from the game along with starting school.  Feeling like a second class woman while in game was kinda awful.  I know that women can be full figured, or at the very least fully clothed, and still be sexy.  I’m not talking like fully covered, but fully clothed.

Maybe I’m just ranting…I’ll go back to my pointless girl gamer section of the world now and feel insignificant.

 

EDIT: Thank you to Nhan-Fiction to providing me with this wonderful link showing exactly what I’m talking about with female champions looking the same recently.