Ok so I’m still playing Destiny. lol The new DLC got some pretty good reviews and the news was they were changing some of the things I hated most about the disc 2.
Well turns out, they did. Several of the awful changes have been reversed. And the new DLC is pretty good. A new twist on some of the existing bad guys with a hint of a mega merger of bad guys in the future. (The Scorn and the Taken.)
I know, you’re just dying at the news, right?! I’m clearly too buys gaming to blog so ….
Anyway, I’m still at it. If you play in PS4 (or xbox) friend me under gamertag ibod8x5. If you send a message I will most likely respond sooner. I tend to let unknown friend requests sit for ages.
I’m still playing Destiny 2. I keep threatening to give it up as they really botched this game disc by getting greedy. It seems common sense (or the expanding community backlash) has prevailed to a degree and they are bringing back some of the core functions in the upcoming DLC (DownLoadable Content)) they left out from disc 1. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t blame Bungie for trying to squeeze dollars out of the game but they went way overboard and people in general were pissed. Daily users dropped dramatically and haven’t really picked back up anywhere near the levels they were in D1.
This week, they released a sort of free mini to everyone that has me scratching my head as well. If you’ve never played, the game is setup so they can randomly add special challenges based on holidays, special occasions or the like. They usually run several months. This one only runs from this week until roughly the end of August. (The new DLC drops September 4th.) This by itself wouldn’t be a problem except the challenges require a lot of grinding (like a lot). So much so, I probably won’t even bother. If I’m lucky, I can squeeze in about 6-8 hours a week, including weekends. It seems counter productive to release a new series of challenges to complete for gear to raise your light level that you’ll never see because you won’t have time to finish even half of them. That or they’ll be obsolete when the new DLC hits as your maximum light levels will go up again. (Light level is basically how strong your player is. The higher the light level, the stronger the player)
I had planned to skip the new DLC a few months ago. This would have pretty much meant the end of the game for me. My interest in the game has drifted off and I barely complete the weekly goals as it is. However, the new DLC got rave reviews, even from some of the harshest critics, and after reading up on it, I buckled and pre-ordered it. We’ll see how it goes. I’m cautiously optimistic. There are so many little things I miss about the mechanics from D1, I’m hoping it revives my love for the game. If not, I’ve got a shit ton of games in my queue to get to. I’m also currently working on Far Cry 5, Fallout 4, and replaying Destroy all Humans.1 A bitch has things to do so Bungie better get their act together. heehee
Corny old school PS3 game ported to PS4 recently. [↩]
I wish I could say my life has been extremely busy lately, which would account for my lack of blogging. Nope. Just the usual boring stuff. Daily life revolves around work, dog, gym, video games, sleep, and repeat. Exciting huh?
Let me delve into the excitement further since you are just dying to know more, right? lol1 Work is work. I STILL struggle with my schedule. I have just resigned myself to it though, even though I hate it. I hate working 10 hour days. I usually waste the 3rd day off as Shawn works. I often nap and video game the day away. Beyond that, I stay pretty busy at work so there is often no dead spots to blog. We are still incredibly short staffed. Our director has been hiring out the wazoo, but it’s only staved off attrition so far. I am confident the new staffing will make a dent eventually. Beyond that, same sh#t, different day. I joined a 2nd committee with the Union I belong to. Lawd, what was I thinking? Drama to the max.
Dog. Cooper is fine for the most part. He is getting older now. He’ll be 8 in May which is old age for bullies. He had some scares this past year but has been fine since then. I’ve had him on a diet and he is down to a slim 57 lbs. heehee The goal is to hit 55. He hasn’t had any limps or unusual flare ups with discomfort so hopefully, the drop in weight is helping. He has developed this lovely groaning noise out of the blue. When he stretches, hops up quickly, or rolls around too much he’ll let out a sort of audible groan. It isn’t something he consciously does. It’s kinda cute. If I hadn’t just had him tested for cancer a few months ago I’d be freaked out. I just chalk it up to his ever lovely personality. He doesn’t like to do walks as much as he used to. I make up for by taking him for a ride in a zipcar anytime I have to run errands. He loves it.
Gym. Gym is progressing nicely. I’m back in the swing of things and have been for a while now. I’m liking the new routine I designed for myself. It works with my longer work schedule, even though I still end up rebelling when it comes to bedtime some nights. I’ve put on a few lbs of muscle2 and lost a few lbs of fat. I’m almost to the peak range I like to be in. I don’t kill myself dieting, which is why the fat loss is going slow. I happy overall with where I am so I don’t feel compelled to put myself on a super strict regimen. I am trying to cut back on eating out as much. Some weeks I succeed, others I fail miserably. I’m still a bit heavier than I want to be so I continue to trim away at it. My belly is the biggest area needing work. I miss the days when my ass got fat. It all goes to my belly now.
Video Games. I’ve almost completely lost interest in Destiny 2. It has been a let-down of sorts. It doesn’t hold my attention like disc 1 did. It’s hard to explain. It isn’t one big thing but many smaller things that just make it less fun. I picked up Metal Gear Solid: Phantom Pain. I played the short version they originally released it it was ok. This one is a solid game, albeit an oddly chaotic and confusing story line. Since the game has bounce around on Nintendo, Sony, and now Xbox, you would probably be in the minority if you knew the entire story-line. I finished the campaign and have been going back thru leveling up thru side missions and extra hard main missions. I’ve been at it for months now so I’m slowly wearing out on it. I discovered last month they finally ported one of my all time favorite games to the XOne, The Darkness II. Sadly, no port of game one. However, even with the old cheesy graphics its been fun playing again. The story is simplistic enough but it manages to pull you in and you get hooked. I still enjoy playing it. I have a few new game sin the queue that need some attention. I expect to get to them shortly.
Shawn is still loving his new job. He is settling into a routine and has yet to come home upset over anything. It’s been nice. hehehe
So you see, I’ve been very busy not being busy.
I have several readers who live afar who yell at me when I go too long without blogging. [↩]
sadly, it’s just gaining back what I lost before but I’ll take it [↩]
In the theme of my previous “Bias” rant, I’m been making some changes to my social media accounts. I’m becoming much more selective about who I follow. It doesn’t have to be rocket science but I ask myself, am I really going to follow or care about this person’s ramblings? It doens’t have to mean they are any more/less important than my own.
On FB, rather than unfriending folks and causing a whole new level of butt-hurt drama, I’ve started unfollowing many ‘friends’. Wow, what a difference it has made. The toxicity level has dropped significantly AND I really do pay attention to what the folks I do follow are saying. Who knew, right?! lol
On twitter, I embraced ‘lists’. Now I move right into my lists vs my regular feed. I absolutely loathe the ‘friends liked this’ posts. Not that I use twitter much anymore anyway. What started as my favorite social media tool has turned into advertising engine. It doesn’t much feel social at all anymore.
My poor Google+ app I mostly just ignore. I can’t tell you how disappointed I am Plus did not take off. I blame it for being too simple. People didn’t understand the more subtle nuances of leaving private comments vs public. It felt featureless for many people. It has also become an sp#m engine for p0rn.
I’m sad to say it but IG is my go-to social account these days. What a sad world when a picture book app is your primary social account? I enjoy IG for gym motivation. I try to follow regular guys that aren’t professional (or wanna be) bodybuilders. I prefer to follow guys like myself that struggle or focus on getting to the gym and staying fit.1 I also get a pure kick out of the seriousness some people invest in their IG shots. The level of obsession is staggering sometimes but oddly addictive to watch.2 Several blog readers have asked me why I don’t have more followers? I’d assume the same reason I don’t have a ton of comments on my blog. I don’t cultivate a “follow” crowd. If you follow me, it is because you are genuinely interested in moi, not because I post p0rn, glamour shots, and/or daily ‘inspirational quotes’ to cover up one’s own narssicism. *giggle* While I do love selfies from time to time, they aren’t my life and I rarely spend more than a few seconds ‘posing’ for one.
Snapchat is an utter disaster and I barely even open the app. The newest update is just another glaringly ad-in-your-face view. No thanks.
So far I’ve noticed a significant difference in how I view and respond to my social accounts. I find myself a little more engaging and willing to interact. I actually open FB more than once a day now. One could say it’s quality over quantity but that would be crazy, right!?
I would TOTALLY be lying if I said a few hotties, just because, haven’t snuck into my feed! [↩]
No, I will not “follow” your Onlyfans page. No, I will not spend money to see you naked. I don’t even pay for porn and you think I’m gonna pay $8-15 a month to see one person naked or doing various other naughty things? Nope.
Have you heard of it? Liar! lol Ok, if you haven’t heard of it, basically it is a website where you create a page people have to pay to see. As you can imagine, much of the content is of the x-rated variety. From what I gather, you can host pics, vids, and/or a live stream. I discovered it after seeing it pop in my IG feed a few times. Ironically, it does not seem to have impacted my snapchat feed much. Granted, I don’t follow near as many people on snapchat. “Viewers” register for your page and by doing so sign up for a monthly fee. So basically, a new take on the web-cam model idea.
The self-advertising has gotten so bad on IG I’ve had to remove a large chunk of folks I follow due to the never ending requests to “follow their page.” Granted, many of the folks I follow are out of purely narcissistic reasons. They are inspiration to get my fat ass to the gym on a consistent basis. However, when your feed feels like an ad campaign I tend to lose interest, regardless of the inspiration. And when you throw shade about it…NEXT!
I guess I can’t be too surprised people have turned to making a profit. And don’t get me wrong, I’m not condemning them. I don’t see anything wrong with using your talents (physical in this case) to make a living. I’ve just become annoyed at the voracity and the attitude. I’ve seen several folks display no small amount of indignation when someone challenges the notion of pay-per-view in their IG comments. Gurl, please! Ain’t nobody got time for that. Sell yo business but don’t get it twisted. You are a commodity in such a forum.
Maybe I should call it the Kardashian effect? (I’m not even sure I spelled that right. I soooo can’t be bothered to even look.) Maybe someone already coined the phrase?
Well, if you’re any sort of gamer or gaymer1 you probably know the 2nd game to Destiny has dropped. The first game captured my attention more than any previous game ever. I was totally hooked. I didn’t even mind the grinding2 so much as others.
One of the biggest complaints surrounding the first release was content. Bungie released the original disc with the full game plus much of the first DLC3 already on the disc. Not a big deal until they charged for the first DLC. Many folks were rightfully pissed! To their credit using many of the same worlds in different ways was ingenious. However, charging your user base for content already on the disc was just foolish and greedy. Ironically, the games popularity persisted and continued to grow. Bungie stumbled many times during the lifespan but came clean on some of the big items and promised bonuses to make up for it.
And speaking of content, many folks felt the game lacked variety even after several brand new DLCs dropped throughout the first two years. Bungie admitted it was hard to crank out new content for consumption due to how the game was built on the back end. In a game of this style with such a large user base, content is everything. The only saving grace was crucible and strike matches. Crucible was player vs player, solo or in groups. Strike missions are teams of players against the environment. The level of variety and skill in these arenas really saved the game. Otherwise, I think it would have gone down as brightly as it arrived. The new game is supposedly built completely different and should allow for more actual new content more often.
So far disc 2 has once again captured my total attention. Even though many of the same enemies have been brought forward, it is different enough to feel new and the same, in a weird sort of way. I’m not quite in awe as I was the first time though. I’m not a fan of much of the new shading and ‘realness’. Another big complaint in the first game was wasted time bouncing between social spaces accesing upgrades and cashing in loot and space/destinations. It was an incredibly annoying time killer. In the new game the simplifications are almost too simple. It keeps breaking my sense of continuity in the game. Granted, as I get used to the new game this will probably go away. I’m only 10 or so hours in and there are supposedly upwards of 150 hours of campaign game play alone.
If you play, feel free to add me. If ya do, send me a message so I know how you found me. I tend to ignore random friend requests when I don’t recognize the player. . I’m PS4 only this time too. No back and forth on the two consoles anymore. Microsoft is steadily ruining the Xbox IMO.
So the last picture post here was supposed to go to my photo blog. Apparently, my dumb-ass forgot I changed some passwords a while back so it stopped updating. To make matters worse, when I updated it, I forgot how I had setup the transfer and ended up creating a new IFTTT1 applet.
When I originally setup the photo blog there wasn’t a direct way to import my photos from IG to WordPress. I had to create a work-around that sent the pic from IG to Tumblr then to WordPress. It was a bit messy but it worked pretty well. Best of all, it was automated. Well, all of the API’s have been updated since then apparently. There are multiple applets in IFTTT that allow you to import directly. My IFTTT account has my blog settings not my photo blog so when I “reconnected”, I connected it to the wrong site. hehehe Not the end of the world mind you. I just thought it was funny.
It’s all fixed now. I still need to go back and manually import all the pics that got skipped but it’s all automated again. Yay!
In other tech fails, I installed Chromium on an old laptop and for some reason, the CD drive will not re-install windows. Granted it’s an old copy but it should work. The BIOS settings are all good and the drive is functioning so I’m leaning toward blaming the install disc. It crashes after loading the software and drivers to install and I get the blue screen of death. I’m not too upset as I hate Windows 10. It’s clunky, ugly, and just not user friendly. It tries and fails to be a universal OS between desktop and mobile. I’m thinking of just installing Linux. I don’t use the laptop that often, but Chromium is still just a wee bit too simple for my needs. If I could just port Android it would be fine.2 Since it wasn’t ‘designed’ to run Android or Chromium both versions are modified ports, courtesy of 3rd-party vendors. Said vendors aren’t really in a position to provide support. Anyway, first world problems.
That nerd of a hubby of mine has gotten me addicted to Zelda, the game. He surprised me with my very own Nintendo Switch. When he pre-ordered his, he ordered me one too. Oh he is a sneaky one! hehehe
So, I was kinda so-so on it. I’ve never been much of a Nintendo fan after the 64. It just felt cheap and childish. I know, those are fighting words for some. haha As Sony & Microsoft seem to be trying their best to out-do each other in processing power and graphics, Nintendo seemed to be obsessed with portability. And while in the beginning, that meant cheesy graphics and retro style games, I have to give them credit. As a device the Switch is pretty polished for a portable console.
The gimmick is you can dock it at home to play on your tv and just pick up the console and walk away and keep playing. And you can! It is virtually seamless. If your mid-game, it automatically pauses and you can pick up where ever you are. It’s light, clean display, and easy to carry around. All good things in the portable world. That isn’t to say it doesn’t have it’s drawbacks. There are more than a few, but not necessarily deal-breakers. First, the online environment is virtually non-existent; no chats, not even messaging. Adding someone as a friend is a bit laborious. You have to give them your friend code outside of the console. You can only do it from the console if you are connected to the same wifi network. Your left posting by email, chat, social media, etc to gain friends. It doesn’t appear to have bluetooth; however, the consoles connect wirelessly to controllers so either it’s bluetooth or wifi direct.1 And don’t get me wrong, you can play other players online. Depending on the game, you can play with friends or find random people. But besides their eStore, there isn’t much else. Apparently, Nintendo is planning to open up and expand an online option. Shawn says it’s been in the works for awhile and appears to be coming to fruition soon. Of course, the simplicity of it isn’t such a bad thing. Simple means less clutter and less distractions. I kinda looked down on Nintendo for this but it isn’t really that bad. If they added a better option to find friends, it would be a win for them IMO.
The new part is the controllers come off the main console. You can play with both controllers or share one with a friend to play multi-player. This is the ingenious part. It truly makes the game portable. The only down side to this is if you want to connect to another tv,you have to have your dock with you or they have to have one. Apparently, there isn’t a cord adapter…yet. Playing multi-player on a small screen isn’t the best option so this will need to happen if they want it to really succeed here. You can also buy a full size controller (much like a Xone or PS4 one) as well. It’s a bit of a sticker-shock but it works. But, they include an adapter to attach both of the console controllers to that makes it feel like a full size one. It’s really quite ingenious. So if you don’t want to spend the bucks, this will still work fine. I use both or either and adjusting to the feel and grip is pretty simple. You can ‘share’ to social media so the idea is basically the same in connecting to find friends.
Shawn started playing the new Zelda game and after watching him for a bit, I was intrigued enough to play on my own. To my surprise I like it. Actually, I love it. And the game play is phenomenal. I’ve already put in about 90 hours and I’m only half way thru the game. That’s stellar for any console. My biggest annoyance is the need to stop and read story-lines. It kills motion and rhythm. And while it still annoys me, it isn’t overly bad. You get plenty of action and movement without interruption when you’re not trying to interact with denizens of the game. Shawn has almost beat his now. I’m still doing all the side quests. It’s surprisingly addictive.
Beyond Zelda, there aren’t many other games that interest me so far. Being new, that isn’t unusual at all. Much like the latest versions from Sony/Microsoft, the Switch isn’t backwards compatible. However, the new style controller gives rise to all kinds of fun ways to play. Better than Microsoft’s gimmicky Kinect add-on.2 Hopefully, a few other games will grab my attention. I definitely like the mobility of it.
Of course, Destiny Disc 2 is dropping soon. It will completely steal me away from the Switch for awhile. hehehe If you can afford it (and can find one in stock) it’s worth a buy if you’re already a Nintendo fan. You’ll be pleasantly surprised. If you’re not, find a friend and try theirs. You might end up being a convert like me.
To be fair, this could be changed with a software patch. [↩]
We unplugged ours. Shawn was creeped out that it always welcomed him when he would walk by the tv while I’m gaming. heehee [↩]
We are headed to Hawaii this week! OMFG I am sooo excited. We’re going for the obvious reasons and to see my buddy Rick who moved back home from SF a couple years ago. He (and his partner Jeremy) graciously offered to put us up at his place so we are saving money as well. Win, win! I’m also looking forward to meeting Bubbles, his version of Cooper. She is a brindle and white bully and looks ever so sassy! I can’t wait to meet her. Sadly, I can’t bring Cooper. He is too old to fly, even inside the plane. And I’d never forgive myself if something happened to him.
I’ve only been to Hawaii once and it was back when I was a wee lad at 18. I was invited along by a guy I was dating at the time. All I remember is the visit to the lava and booze.1 We also went to one of the smaller islands. This time, we are headed to the Kona on the big island. I’m really looking forward to the trip. The closer it gets the less focus I seem to have. hehehe
Shawn surprised me with my very own Nintendo Switch this week. He also managed to get me hooked on the new Legend of Zelda gama. hehehe I’m usually not a Nintendo fan; however, I admit to enjoying the game. I don’t want to bash Nintendo as a console, but they are usually pretty basic. The switch is pretty polished and nails the potability factor hands down. I’ve yet to play any online games so can’t really review the process so far. It’s a tad more basic in design and graphics than Xone or PS4 games; however, Zelda also clocks in a roughly 80-hour game time. That’s pretty damn good for one game. It should keep us busy on the loooong plane rides to and from. And I’m always flattered and appreciative of Shawn’s kindness.
I’ll try to remember to take pics while I’m gone. I’m horrible about taking pics on vacation. Ironically, being on IG this past year may help me to remember. heehee For you folks that have been to the big island, feel free to send tips or great places to see/do.
XL phone. As some of you might remember I rejoined the Sammy line with the S7 Edge a few months back with the promise of better battery and less bloat. And while the battery was better, after an OS update it went back to being marginal at best. After much back and forth in the forums and tweaking apps to pin down a bad player, I just gave up. And for most people, the battery is probably more than sufficient.
I’m a power user and I still lament having to give up my Experia Z3. The best smartphone battery ever! Hands down the winner in real world use. That thing would last all day with heavy use. Anyway, seeing more and more reviews for the Pixel battery and other features, I couldn’t help myself. I couldn’t “jump” on the Tmo plan since it is currently “exclusive” to Verizon. However, tricky Tmo found a work around in that they’ll reimburse you monthly up to $325.00 if you register the Pixel on their network. Sold! The only hiccup was the lady tried to force me onto one of Tmo’s newer plans. I staunchly refused and threatened to back out completely. After some back and forth and her seeing how long I’ve been with Tmobile, she relented.1
I am absolutely in love with the Pixel XL. First, it is 100% Android. If you have never used a Nexus brand with pure Android, you have never experienced the OS the way it was meant to function. It is simple and elegant. Not a lot of fluff but gets the job done. Google+ leaves the fluff to app-developers. However, if a certain feature becomes super popular as to be almost ubiquitous, Google+ will incorporate it into newer versions of the OS, touch sense, smart lock, etc. The OS in it’s purest form is just lovely. I’m so glad to be back. The Moto X Pure I had was pretty close, it just turned out not to be a good performer in chip speed.
I left the Nexus brands in the past due to mediocre hardware. This time around the new Pixel brand from Google+ is no slouch in the hardware department. It is definitely a premium phone. Hopefully, they learned from the previous failures of the Nexus line. I opted for the larger XL as I am accustomed to the larger screens. Also, being on pure Android means I get security patches or upgrades to the OS as soon as they are released. No more waiting for the carrier or hoping they even get around to doing an update. Google+ is pretty strict about the patches but OS upgrades can be hit and miss. A huge annoyance but still a first world problem.
I opted to transfer everything directly this time using the cable from phone to phone. OMG! It was super fast. Way faster than waiting for everything to re-download from the app store. Some of the apps didn’t even seem to notice I had moved, I was still logged in and everything. I was up and running at record speed. Other phones offer this too, this was just the first time I opted to use it.
Shawn commented he thought it looks like an Iphone because of the white bevel; however, I disagree. No dimple and no silly lightning port. heehee The fingerprint sensor is embedded in the back and rather than your thumb ease of use requires your index finger. It also turns on and unlocks the phone at the same time if you place your finger on the sensor while the screen is off. Sammy you had to at least push once to wake up the phone, then the sensor woke up. Not a big annoyance at all but one less step is always nicer. Of course, I opted for the “really blue” colored one. I’m not a big fan of the large bevel on the bottom but I’m already used to it. At first, I kept looking for the old S7 button on the bevel.
The most important part so far is the battery. It is definitely better! I would say not quite at the Z3 level but pretty damn close! I can get thru a full 10 hour work day with moderate to heavy use and still have enough to hit the gym and make it home before needing a charge. If I use is super heavy, I still get thru work but need a quick charge before hitting the gym. It does not support wireless charging but it does have quick charge. The one annoyance is I have to upgrade some of my cables since the new phone is USB-C. The latter is the new version of USB with a uniform shape so no matter which way you plug it in, it fits.2 It comes with a USB to USB-C out of the box and a USB-C dual end cable. These are fine but I need longer cables so will have to invest in extras. It does suck a bit after having the same standard for years to have to switch to newer cables. Again, first world problems.
Getting the phone was a bit of a pisser. FedEx sucks monkey balls. The phone shipped overnight for a premium. I paid the premium. It’s supposed to ship with guaranteed next day delivery by 3pm. Or so FedEx loves to claim. The next day rolls around no phone by 3:00 pm. I wait till 4:30 to call. I knew being Xmas eve, expecting it to on time at 3:00 was a bit much. I wasn’t angry or upset. The tech looks it up and assure me it is on the truck and would arrive sometime before 8:00 pm. Ok, no worries. I had signed up for the email updates so around 6:30 pm I get an update that the package was rechecked at the SF facility! Needless to say I’m a bit confused. I call and spend roughly 20 minutes on hold. No exaggeration, I spent that amount of time on hold. It’s now after 7:00 pm. The first tech was completely indifferent and couldn’t be bothered to care. He gave me some excuse about the shipment being delayed. I’m like you realize that is a total lie, right? Your company said it was on the truck twice today, there is no delay in shipment. He hems and haws and finally admits the tech had too much delivery and didn’t finish. I’m like, “ok, but that still doesn’t explain why it is checked back in at 6:00 when you’re supposed to be delivering until 8:00 pm.” He seemed utterly flummoxed that his indifferent answer didn’t satisfy me. I finally end up with a supervisor. It is now 7:40. The supervisor is just as indifferent and was even less helpful. Since we were leaving for LA the next day and I really wanted to have the phone to take with me, I asked if they could hold it and I would pick it up. Nope! We totally dropped the ball and even know we’ve verified you are the recipient, we totally can’t hold it. I’m so livid at this point I had to say goodbye as I would have gone off and Shawn would have been mad at me for mistreating them. Granted they personally weren’t at fault but I’d expect a little more help when calling. So the moral of this paragraph children? Don’t ever use sh*tty FedEx. Use UPS. Hell, even the US Post Office doesn’t act that indifferent and they are civil service!
All the frustration aside, I finally got it after we got back. First world problems abated. The phone is awesome and I’m in love with it. If you can afford it out of pocket3 I highly recommend it. It is a great phone.
That trick almost always works. With the exception of a brief 6 months on Cingular back in the day, I’ve been with Tmo since they were VoiceStream [↩]
You’d think the tech world would have had this ages ago. [↩]
if you’re not on Verizon and able to get it for free [↩]