GenCon Day Three: “The last, best hope of gamerkind…”

Well, it’s the last hope for me at least. I plan on taking a quick visit to the con today and then hitting the road back towards Chicagoland. I’m glad to be heading back home today because I’m just flat out tired mostly. It’s nothing to do with the hotel or anything like that. In fact, if Grimwell or CmdrSlack haven’t mentioned it yet, this is one of the nicest hotels I’ve ever stayed at (Country Inn and Suites @ Indianapolis Airport). The beds aren’t the typical overly squishy soft ones you usually find, their continental breakfast is awesome, and having shuttle service right to the convention center can’t be beat. Continue reading

GenCon Day Two: Thrust into the Light

ARGH!!! Teh Intarweb ate my post! 🙁

So between several sidetrackings, I had put a bit of time into working on my wrapup for today’s GenCon visitation, but thanks to an untimely use of the backspace key while not in the text box lead to the aforementioned post eating. Now I must try to reconstruct the whimsy I had deliberately typed previously. *sigh*

Today was supposed to be my easy day at the con, since I had one goal to accomplish. Unfortunately, things got off to a bad start and started to slide downhill from there. The bad start is called a fire alarm at 4:30 am. It’s bad enough to have the fire alarm go off in the hotel in the first place, but try doing it with three sleepy kids thrust awake unexpectedly, and let’s just say that it wasn’t a happy occasion.

Once we figured out that it really was the hotel alarm and not the wake-up alarm (as I thought, and turned on by accident trying to turn off while half-awake) and it wasn’t the room fire alarm for some reason (maybe related to the sheer number of electrical gadgets we have plugged into assorted outlets around the main room), we got organized and headed out into the hall. By that time, Grimwell had checked downstairs and discovered that it was a false alarm. Someone had put too much butter on the waffle maker and the resulting smoke set off the alarm.

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GenCon Day One: Rhyssa’s Journey into Geekdom

A day-by-day wrap-up of my visit to GenCon Indy this year with Grimwell, The Muse and their children and CmdrSlack and his fiancee. These wrap-ups have also been posted over at GamerGod along with Grimwell’s and CmdrSlack’s observations.

I was apparently the only one of our group who managed to arrive at our hotel in Indianapolis without any sidetrips or delays. Mapquest gave me an estimated 4 hours from my door to the hotel and I’ll be damned it it wasn’t almost exactly 4 hours, including the usual reconstruction BS around I-80/94 and through to I-65 in Indiana.

Still, I arrived at the hotel by 3pm and had time to settle in a bit before heading to the convention center with Grimwell and family for our badges. We only waited an hour in line before registration opened up, and once that line started moving..hoo boy! We cruised through the process in no time flat and were back at the hotel, ready to head out to dinner.

After a good night’s sleep, we were at the convention center slightly before the 10 am opening, were greatly disappointed by how quickly CmdrSlack and STBMCS got through the line and then headed off to the main hall. The groups split up and headed out on our own agendas. I decided on a methodical approach and started in the corner with the 100 level booths. I wasn’t looking for any particular vendors at this time, just taking in the atmosphere.

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Off to see the Wizard!

The Wonderful Wizards of the Coast!

AKA GenCon Indy. I’m officially on vacation (started today! Whoo!) and am packing up the truck to head down tomorrow. I’m sharing a room with Grimwell and Family and CmdrSlack and Fiancee, so things will be a wee bit crowded at night (5 adults, 3 kids, 2 queen beds, a cot and a sleeper sofa), but we aren’t planning on spending tons of time in the room.

Registration tomorrow (Wednesday) night, and then we hit the floor Thursday and Friday before the seething masses show up. Saturday will be a wrap up day, but the crowds will no doubt be insane as usual. Grim, Slack and me are doing coverage for  GamerGod of course, so expect to see some updates from onsite while we are there. Then wrap-up commentary after a short recovery period.

Oh yeah, and the dice! Must not forget the dice. It’s just not GenCon without buying at least one set of new dice, and it’s been 2 years since I’ve attended, so by my reckoning, I have 3 sets of dice to purchase. Um hmm, sounds about right to me!

“Victoria’s Secret is not a Game Developer”

I submitted my very first article for the GamerGirl column over at GamerGod. I had no clue what to title said article though, so I left it in the very capable hands of my editor – The Muse, who is herself a “GamerGirl” (gawds, that title bugs me). She came up with the title of which I very much approve.

Oh yeah, I should note that The Muse definitely scrubbed the text to make it clearer in some areas, as I found when I was logging this entry and comparing my original text to what she released for posting. Her changes always make so much sense when I see them, I wonder why I didn’t write it like that in the first place. That’s why we have her though, to make us all look better than we are! 🙂

So without any further ado, I present the article! Continue reading

Grimwell Online Banners

Description: Skytower banners made for the Grimwell Online gaming news site.  The ideas came from the staff and I created the banners for placement on the main site page.  There were 20 skytower banners made in total.  These were meant to be humorous and relate to the games the staff played and reviewed.

URL: offline

Features: Custom graphics.

Completed: 2003 – 2005

Grimwell Online Skytower Banner #1Grimwell Online Skytower Banners #7Grimwell Online Skytower Banners #8Grimwell Online Skytower Banners #9

Grimwell Online Skytower Banners #17Grimwell Online Skytower Banners #19Grimwell Online Skytower Banners #20

The PvP Files: Death and Consequences

Posted today over at Grimwell Online.
Why death penalties are necessary for PvP.

Death penalties should be seen as a necessary part to both PvE and PvP, providing a sense of consequence to ingame actions. Granted, dying is not always the result of bad player decisions; mob respawn, runners bringing adds, overpulling, etc. can all lead to player deaths. Without any penalty, players would simply be able to suicide run their way through content. Having at least a minimal penalty helps teach the player to be a bit more careful in the future. Yet, games that have little or no penalty for dying are generally seen by a majority of players as more “fun” or “better” to play. Why is this?  Continue reading

Another Random Update

Well, I’ve been wandering around in WoW, just playing and dinking around with other characters once again. I’m not rushing to level any of my alts though, because I’m enjoying the leveling process again. I’m trying to do and find quests that I didn’t complete the first time around, or do see how the class specific ones differ, and it’s been nice. No pressure, and if I feel in the need for some PvP, well Southshore is a quick flight away (as I did last night. Mass group PvP can be so fun).

I’ve mostly been working on trying to come up with a new look for the HoS website, because the one we are using now is from 2002 and it shows. My skills have far surpassed what they were back then, it’s just a matter of getting Cyreen to agree and update things. Oh well, at least it’s entertaining for me. I’ll post links to some of the work I’ve done lately for this.

I’m also finishing some work on a stylesheet switcher for the different looks I’ve had since I started using CSS regularly, but I want to make sure that the code in those old stylesheets is solid and works properly before unveiling it. I’ll have those two new/old stories up today as well as a few other image links for signatures and other graphics.

Guild Wars Preview Weekend

So after hearing some of the chatter from guildmates and here at Grimwell Online regarding Guild Wars, I decided to hop into the free demo weekend that was held October 29-31.

Downloading the client was simple and quick, and on the default settings, the game looked good. The streaming content (one of the features) didn’t seem to take especially long to download to my system at all, even during US prime time hours. As Tobold has already mentioned in his excellent write-up, each area of the game is instanced into districts. You can tell at a glance which district you are in by looking at the location box in the upper left corner of the screen. The information is there if you choose to use it, without being intrusive or hidden away in some obscure submenu.  Continue reading