Monday, December 31, 2007

My Favorite Friday Kills

One of my Christmas presents this year was the Friday the 13th collectors box set, containing the first 8 films. Watching these films again has inspired me to create two lists. The first will be my Top 5 favorite deaths of Jason Voorhees. The second will be my Top 10 favorite kills of Friday the 13th (not Jason only since he's not always the killer). Enjoy!

PD's Top 5 Deaths of Jason Voorhees

5. Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday
Watching Jason get dragged down into Hell was rather cool to watch.

4. Friday the 13th Part 2
Slow motion machete into the shoulder. You know that had to hurt.

3. Friday the 13th Part 6: Jason Lives
Ok, the boat propeller to the neck would have certainly been less entertaining if it weren't for the sound effects and the huge chunks of flesh mixed in with the blood. This was glorious.

2. Friday the 13th Part 3
The death that gave him that trademark axe-hole in the upper right corner of his mask. The sound effect on this was perfect, and oh-so-painful.

1. Friday the 13th Part 4: The Final Chapter
My favorite of all time. The machete lodging itself into the side of his head, the blood gushing out. You're in awe, but that's not all! He then falls over and we get to watch the machete's handle hit the floor and be forced through the rest of the way. And then, of course, he gets chopped into little tiny pieces to complete the picture. THE best Jason death, bar none. Kudos, Tom Savini.

PD's Top 10 Kills of Friday the 13th

10. Mark - Friday the 13th Part 2
The kid in the wheelchair gets a machete across the face, and then goes rolling down the stairs. You'll find I'm a big fan of death scenes involving doing something to someone's head and/or face.

9. Jack - Friday the 13th
Kevin Bacon's character gets an arrow through the throat as he smokes a joint in bed. Mostly I just liked watching Kevin Bacon die. Heh.

8. Marcie - Friday the 13th
Axe to the face. The best death in part 1 (aside from the decapitation of Jason's mother). The set up is brilliant, with the shadow of the axe being raised behind her. Hitting the light gives weight to the axe. And finally seeing it in her head is one of the best effects of the film.

7. Tommy's friend - Friday the 13th Part 6: Jason Lives
Right after they inadvertently resurrect Jason, he puts his arms right through this kid's stomach. Quite the display.

6. Junior - Friday the 13th Part 5: A New Beginning
More gratifying than anything else. I hated that dumb fuck.

5. Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday
I forget the name of the character, but near the beginning after the black dude devours Jason's heart, he stumbles across two people having sex in a tent. He impales one of them with a metal stop sign pole, and proceeded to yank up on it and cut them nearly in half. Vertically.

4. Sissy - Friday the 13th Part 6: Jason Lives
He twists off her HEAD. With his bare hands! And then looks at it curiously. And then puts it in the sheriff's car.

3. Rick - Friday the 13th Part 3
He squeezes his head until one of his eyes pops right out. I wish I had been around when the movie was in theaters, so I could have seen THAT in 3D.

2. Axel - Friday the 13th Part 4: The Final Chapter
Hacksaw to the neck, followed by spinning his head 180 degrees. Lovely.

1. Jimmy - Friday the 13th Part 4: The Final Chapter
A combination of things make this my favorite. First, it's Crispin Glover. Who doesn't want to see him brutally murdered? The corkscrew through the hand is a great warm-up for what is about to happen. And again, any damage to the face is a winner with me, in this case a butcher knife across the face. And finally, the sound effect on the butcher knife is one of the most intriguing and effective, ever. What exactly *is* that?

Friday, December 28, 2007

And the word of the day is...

cyn i cal [sin-i-kuhl]
- adjective
1. like or characteristic of a cynic; distrusting or disparaging the motives of others.
2. showing contempt for accepted standards of honesty or morality by one's actions, esp. by actions that exploit the scruples of others.
3. bitterly or sneeringly distrustful, contemptuous, or pessimistic.

Interesting word. I think it's no secret that I tend to have a cynical side to my personality that rears its ugly head from time to time. Generally, I don't trust others. You have to earn it. I wouldn't necessarily say that I'm disparaging, but maybe sometimes when I don't particularly like you. Heh. The second definition is probably furthest from myself. Sadly, I'm quite incapable of lying about anything, which actually causes problems for me at times. (Honest to a fault, as some would say.) This leads me to tell people what I think of them when I'd be better off just keeping my mouth shut.

Now that third definition is just mean. Bitter? Sneering? What am I, an evil arch-villain? Contemptuous? Only if you piss me off. Pessimistic? No. Realistic would be the more accurate term.

This word popped into my head today as I was typing an email and wondering if I was coming across as a cynical person. Sometimes, tone is a very important part of getting your point across, and it's hardly possible to capture tone in a text message. Maybe I should start recording my facial expressions as I type messages so that people will never misinterpret what I'm saying. Heh.

On a more entertaining topic, my post title reminded me of a very funny animation about Sesame Street. Check it out here.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

An Inconvenience?

So we're right smack in the middle of the holidays. Christmas is over, New Year's is next week. Around 9:00 PM on Christmas Night, my Dad says to me, "Seems like an awful lot of work for just a few hours."

That's quite true. And while I enjoy the holiday season, as I'm sure many people do, I can't help but consider a lot of it to be an inconvenience. I'm the kind of person who creates a schedule that I follow. That's not to say that I'm obsessive-compulsive about having to have my pens in a certain order, or counting the number of times my turn signal ticks before I can make a turn. But I like to have my life planned out to a certain extent, and the holidays just turn that whole thing upside-down for a week or two.

The actual day of Christmas was quite enjoyable for me this year, so if there was only a way to eliminate all that preparation that goes along with it, we'd be golden. But I digress.

The only other gripe I have about the holidays is the whole social aspect. I like to be sociable when I feel like being sociable. The holidays just come around and declare "You must be a sociable individual on December 25th and December 31st!" Fuck that! But again, if I would celebrate Christmas only when I was in the mood to do so, it would probably come around with the same consistency as the locusts. Or even Halley's Comet. Heh.

I think the main problem I'm alluding to here, is that I find it difficult to spend vast amounts of time with my family for one simple reason -- we don't have anything in common! It is impossible for me to carry on a lengthy, meaningful conversation with one of them because we simply don't have anything to talk about. My main interests revolve around computers, computer gaming, movies, music, anime, and other minor sub-topics of this list. Most of my family members don't even know what those things are, let alone have any interest in them. Sure, they try to sound interested in the event that I decide to talk about them, but it's pretty much the equivalent to talking to myself.

I certainly love my family. But I'm not exactly sure they get that impression from me as I'm laying on the couch Christmas Day watching the football game and half-listening to their topics of conversation, which interest me about as much as mine interest them. I don't even LIKE football, but I'm quite sure I would get yelled at had I tried to play a computer game while they were visiting. Or maybe they know me well enough to know that since I *wasn't* in front of the computer, I was telling them they are still important to me.

I hope so.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007


My transition from primary DPS to a tank within World of Warcraft has been an interesting one for me, and as the year draws to a close I would like to share some little tidbits that have come to mind as I've made this choice to change.

The first part is the whole leadership thing. I really don't know how this whole thing started, but it's probably simply due to my personality. This isn't the first time I've displayed the qualities of a leader, or in some sense an organizer, so that really came as no surprise to me whatsoever.

This is apart from the RL status. While the tank playing the part of the Raid Leader is pretty common, the RL *not* being the tank is not UNcommon either. In 5-man instances, however, it seems quite prevalent that the tank is always the one marking the targets and performing the pulls. I've actually received shocked reactions from other players when I would be the one doing this in an instance. It never occurred to me why this was strange to them until I started tanking.

The idea of leading instances wasn't particularly my own, it's just something that started happening way back in the early days of being level 60. While I will admit that I have a horrible sense of direction, this is countered by my ability to memorize things. Once I run through an instance once, I'm pretty good at memorizing all its quirks and all the little things you need to know to either succeed or to make your life much easier. This, coupled with the fact that I appear to be quite good at it, started the trend of people automatically turning group lead over to me when we'd run an instance.

I've noticed, however, that doing the same job as the tank is a lot smoother. While I was always conscious of the tank's need for rage, I'm not always certain that I was courteous with the speed in which I would do the pulls. While tanking, naturally, I pull when I'm ready. Though I feel that playing a DPS class, especially that of a mana-based one, has given me an insight that most tanks might lack. I make sure that everyone has sufficient mana before any pull, and I look behind me to make sure my party is there.

That leads me to my next thought. As a mage, I rarely felt I was doing anything vitally important. Mostly, playing the mage is fun, as I'm sure most DPS classes are. I was blowing stuff up, laughing at my crits, and just having a good time. I suspect that my desire to be a more vital part of the group was one of my main reasons for so willingly changing characters. The idea of standing in front of your group and being solely responsible for keeping them all alive is very appealing to me. It's probably the reason why I treated crowd-control as an art form while playing the mage, and why healers would always stand close to me because they knew I would frost nova a mob to keep it off of them. Heroic, I guess you could say, but realistically it's just my desire to do something more than "do damage to the skull target".

So if asked about my decision to switch after basically over-gearing my mage, the answer is that no, I don't regret doing so; for a number of reasons:

1. As I said above, I find tanking more fulfilling than DPSing. At the same time, I'm still having fun, and I still get to play with my friends (except my fellow tanks, but that's what raiding is for).

2. I'm invited to more 5-man instances than I was on the mage. Typically, as a DPS it would be me forming the group. Otherwise, I would be out doing something and notice that everyone else was running an instance. As a tank, sometimes I don't even get to check my mail before I'm getting invited to something.

3. I'm a visuals kind of guy -- I like graphics, details, etc. Playing an undead mage wasn't all that great to look at, because of the size of an undead. As a tauren, I can actually see what my gear looks like now. And, warrior gear just looks cooler, for the most part.

4. Being extremely hard to kill is quite entertaining. One such case where I was laughing to myself was a certain night in heroic Underbog. We had just started, and we took down a 3 pull without incident. I then looked and noticed our healer had disconnected, and had been disconnected through the entire pull. I hadn't gotten one heal the entire time, and it didn't even matter.

5. My damage output on the mage was superior to others for two reasons: my gear, and my study and exploitation of the mage's arcane tree. On a long boss fight, my damage output was on-par with everyone else. Warlocks would surpass me because they are the gods of the 15 minute long fight due to their abilities. However, I was utterly unrivaled in short, burst damage fights. This did not come without a cost, however, and I constantly felt that I was slowing down my groups because of my need to mana up. On the warrior, I'm making a group wait, at most, 15-20 seconds while my Bloodrage becomes available again. That's much better.

6. There is no tanking gear in PvP. I will never, ever, ever, ever have to PvP as a tank to get an upgrade. And that is fucking beautiful.

7. I actually have to compare gear and do math before accepting an upgrade.

Next, here are a few of my observations about tanking, from a warrior point of view:

-- If your healer keeps dying first from only healing you, you are a bad tank.
-- If you can tank 2 things without having to taunt, you are a tank.
-- If you can tank 3 things without having to taunt, you are a good tank.
-- If you can tank 4 things without having to taunt, you are a very good tank.
-- If you can tank 5 or more things without having to taunt, you obviously have 6 arms.
-- If you can keep an AOE pull off of the mage without having to taunt, you are cheating.

I particularly like the DPS people who enjoy testing their tank. I've noticed that warlocks are the most common people who do this. "Let's see how long it takes me to pull aggro!" My solution to this problem is simple. Stop taunting and tell the healer not to heal the dumbass.

Conversely, there are the DPS classes that feel they can tank if necessary. These are mostly the people that wear PvP gear for PvE instances and raids. For these people, I taunt the mob they pulled off of me and hold it, and then later I yell at them for doing sub-par DPS that would be much higher had they been wearing PvE gear.

Given that a tanking warrior's only weakness is tanking multiple things at once, I find it humorous that crowd controlling seems to be a lost art these days. The DPS world has been overrun with druids, shamans, and DPS warriors. None of which can CC. Warlocks are also a common commodity, and unless it's a demon or elemental, their CC sucks. Mages are scarce. Hunters are noobs and don't know how to trap. Rogues forgot how to be sneaky. I blame PvP (as I do for most things).

But I guess it's one way of tackling the biggest obstacle with my class head-on. And as long as the DPS is intelligent, tanking 4-5 things at once really isn't a problem. At that point, it becomes a game of how fast I can switch between targets.

With the new year coming up, I'm looking forward to taking my warrior as far as I can in the next 16-odd months before the next expansion comes out. But mostly, I just want to continue having fun with it and learning as much as I can to get even better at it.

Thursday, December 20, 2007


For very bad things are about to happen.

Hehe. If you read LFG, you know exactly what I'm talking about. It's good to have Richard back to normal.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Time Wasters

I like to be entertained, which I'm sure is true for a vast majority of people. I find that while my brain is occupied on something else, it's not prone to go wandering off on its own. This is why, for the longest time, I rarely slept at all. I would turn off the TV, lay in bed in silence, and never fall asleep. I would think, ideas ranging far and wide. And this would keep me awake all night long. I finally learned that if there was something to distract me, I could fall asleep very quickly. So now, for at least the last ten years or so, I always sleep with the TV on. I'm sure there are people out there who are exactly the opposite of me -- where if there's even the slightest bit of sound, they can't sleep. I'm sure my habit seems strange to some people.

In any case, I like to be entertained. When I'm at home, this is quite easily accomplished. Computer games are my preferred method of entertainment, along with movies, music, writing, and the occasional rabid attack from my sabertoothed cat. Work is a different story, however. As entertaining as SQL scripting is, I still find the need to occasionally take a break. Since the sound (and sight) of me tanking a demon boss in WoW might not be entirely acceptable here, nor would the idea of me taking a 2-hour movie break, I naturally have to resort to quicker forms of entertainment. For those of you equally inclined, I've compiled a list of my favorite places to visit online when I'm taking a break from the daily grind that is my job. Enjoy!

1. Web Comics

I love web comics, and this is probably mostly because I love comics in general. Yes, I read the Sunday Funnies every week. Given my love of computer games, any web comics focusing around that particular genre are obviously my favorites.

The comic that I would read religiously twice a week was Concerned. It was created using Garry's Mod, a Half-Life 2 modification program that I also used to create my own web comics. The story is based on the Half-Life 2 universe in a comical way. The comic is now complete, but I still find myself going back every once in a while to re-read it.

Lately, I've been keeping up with Looking For Group. I believe that comic started out very strong, and it was hilarious. Snippets of this comic have made their way into my gaming life, with my guild members in WoW yelling "For Pony!" before we engage a boss. My opinion is it's best read all at once. I suggest you read a "book" of the comics, then not read anymore until another "book" is complete so you can read it all at once. Trust me, it's just better that way.

The creators of Looking For Group also write Least I Could Do. This comic is more real life, and probably something more people can relate to.

More in the computer game related category are the comics put out by Action Trip.

It's times like these when I wish WoW had better graphics, and a means in which to pose characters the way Garry's Mod allows. I have such a gold mine of WoW events in my head that would make priceless comic strips.

That, or I wish I could draw. Heh.


The proverbial geek headquarters. It's a compilation of IRC quotes, many of which are probably fake but it's still entertaining to read through some of them. Honestly though, I find my own much more entertaining.


When all else fails, read movie trivia.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Chinese Fortune Scavenger Hunt

"You are very expressive and positive in words, ct and feeling."


Can you guess what that's supposed to be? Curiosity got the best of me, so I googled the phrase on the hunch that somewhere on the internet, it would be spelled out correctly.

Turns out just a simple letter was missing -- it's ACT.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

I Hate Reviews

So it's "performance review" time here at the office. It was bad enough when I had to fill mine out. But now that I'm a manager, I have to still fill mine out AND review the three people on my team. Fack!

This is the most pointless shit ever. I haven't gotten a damn thing done today because I've been working on this crap. I love the portions of this where it pretty much says "Make up a few paragraphs of nice things to say about your employee." Give me a fucking break. I haven't fired them yet so obviously they're of some use to me.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

The 25 Most Shocking Moments in Gaming

I've seen countless lists such of these for movies and the like, so I thought it was time someone created one for gaming. So allow me to present my list of the 25 Most Shocking Moments in Gaming:

25. Super Mario Bros.
"Thank you Mario! But our princess is in another castle."

24. Grand Theft Auto
Three words: Hot Coffee Mod

23. Brothers In Arms
The opening battle, comparable to the beginning of Saving Private Ryan in it's brutality. I still remember the look on the face of the solider who wore glasses. One minute, standing right in front of me. The next, dead and bloody at my feet.

22. Red Faction
Wait, I can shoot through walls? SWEET!

21. Hellgate: London
Destroying a rift and fighting the demon that appears in it's place, only to be blind-sided by 20 more just like it and dying a glorious death. Utter brilliance.

20. Counter-Strike
This one is completely personal. I'm playing "The Black Level" with CM -- no light, walls are black, only white lines on the floor. We start a new round, and he's like "Pause! BRB." I make my way over to his side, find him, and wait. "Ok, unpause." BOOM!
Well, it was shocking for HIM. =)

19. The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
Stepping into Oblivion for the very first time. For me, it was quite similar to stepping into a dungeon for the first time in Super Mario Bros. Everything that you had seen up to that point was all bright and shiny. All pretty and aesthetically pleasing. Then all of a sudden you're in a dark, foreboding environment. A great moment in gaming

18. Aliens vs Predator 2
The moment when you walk out into the open and you hear that sound...the sound that you recognize from the movies. It's the sound of a Predator. You see the blurry form of a cloaked monster on the rooftops. You see his laser sights looking for you. The moment when you have to face off against a Predator for the first time is absolutely chilling.

17. Crysis
Loading it up for the first time will be sufficient in shattering your current standards for graphics in a computer game. This isn't a game. It's a fucking motion picture presentation.

16. The Suffering
You just broke out of your jail cell. The power is out. You walk into the prison cafeteria. You hear something...something that sounds like metal on metal. It's getting louder, like footsteps. Then, something drops down from the ceiling -- a disgusting creature with metal blades for arms and legs. You blast it with your shotgun out of instinct, realizing that you also screamed out loud and your knuckles are white with fear. Thus begins the game.

15. Half-Life 2
There are so many great gaming moments in this game, it's hard to pick the best one. But I'm going to have to go with the boat chase sequence here. Seeing hundreds of mines dropping from that helicopter has to be one of the greatest "You've got to be fucking kidding me" moments, ever.

14. Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast
I was utterly bored with this game at it's start. "I have to use a BLASTER? Where's my fucking lighsaber?" Kyle has abandoned the Force and has no special powers whatsoever. And then him and his girlfriend are attacked by Force users, and you are powerless to do anything as you listen to them kill her. It's like the game is telling you, "Are you ready to be able to do THAT? The game will now start." And yes, we were ready.

13. Serious Sam
Sure, you fought a lot of monsters. Hundreds. Even thousands of them. Big ones too, probably some of the biggest baddies ever to be rendered in a computer game. But when the final boss rears it's ugly head, revealing itself to be twice as tall as the Great Pyrimids of Egypt that it's standing behind, you can't help but drop your jaw and mutter "Whoa."

12. Soldier of Fortune 2
You love shooters, and you love how realistic they've become. Ah yes, the blood, the explosions, it's all good stuff. What's this? A new SOF game? Sweet! You load it up. You find a shotgun. You shoot a terrorist in the stomach with it. What's that? INTESTINES FELL OUT! Then you do it again and again.

11. Prey
Nothing ruins your day more than an alien invasion. Those damn aliens, always trying to enslave humanity. You see a lot of death on your journey to stop them in this game, a whole lot of it. Even your grandfather, killed by an alien right before your eyes. But after killing countless aliens and seeing so many people killed by them, nothing could prepare you for the task of having to kill your own girlfriend, whose alien controlled body is now trying to blow you up while the still human part is begging you to kill her. This boss fight leaves you feeling that no matter what, you're going to finish this game just to put a bullet in the head of the fucker who did this.

10. Dungeon Siege II
As with the end of any self-respecting RPG, you have to fight the final uber-powerful boss! And you defeat him gloriously...only to find out that in doing so, you just destroyed the world. Nice work, hero.

9. Max Payne
You heard all this hype about "bullet time". What the hell is bullet time? So you buy Max Payne, you load it up, you're in the game. You come across your first bad guy, and you press the "shootdodge" button. The world slows down around you. Max dives to the right in slow motion. You realize you just dodged bullets. You shoot at the bad guy. Time speeds back up. The bullets rush at the baddie and blow him away. And you, similarly, are left blown away by what you just saw for the first time. It's since been copied countless times, but nothing compares to seeing it new.

8. System Shock 2
Finding out that the kindly voice of the other lone survivor on your spaceship -- the only reason you've had to fight your way through hordes of monsters to find her -- is nothing more than an insane computer playing with your mind will live on as one of the greatest gaming moments in history.

7. Doom
Just playing it, period. It was the first of it's kind, and it lives on as the game that changed everything. If you want a specific moment, however, think about the first time you saw a Pinky demon running towards you in a dark corridor.

6. Postal 2
Just, like, the entire game, dude. Ok, I have to pick a moment? Pissing on the corpse of the cop you just gunned down. Happy now?

5. Quake 4
So you're a big, bad Marine fighting slovering aliens from Stroggos, and you just lost a battle with the Makron. You're pride is a little hurt, but it's okay. You awake to find yourself on a conveyor belt, and you witness the prisoner in front of you being mutilated before your very eyes. But you're the main character. That can't happen to you. There's no way that'll happen to you. Then a gigantic saw blade lurches down from the ceiling and messily amputates your legs as your character screams in agony, and you watch in horror as the hero you're playing is gruesomely transformed into that which you've been fighting throughout the entire game. Utterly shocking.

4. Bioshock
The idea of the person helping you out through the entire game suddenly turning out to be the bad guy is such a common staple in games that it's no longer shocking. However, the additional added twist two-thirds through Bioshock adds new life to this dead device with three simple words: "Would you kindly..." And you realize, horrifically, that all the choices you thought you were making were never your own to begin with. A classic mindfuck.

3. Half-Life
Inserting the sample into the beam, thus causing the resonance cascade scenario. It leaves you confused, panic-striken, and saying to yourself, "What the fuck did I just do?!"

2. F.E.A.R.
When you first encounter the horror moppet in all her bloody glory, you're not filled with just fear. You PANIC. This is one of the first and only times in a computer game where my first instinct was to turn and run the fuck away.

1. Half-Life 2: Episode 2
Gordon Freeman has never been someone who can't get out of an impossible situation with little more than a crowbar. He's been in countless, and he always finds a way out. So it was nothing less than numbing to watch the final sequence of Episode 2, watching as Gordon is helplessly pinned to a wall while an Advisor impales Eli Vance through the back of the head. While Dog saves Alyx and Gordon from certain death, it's painfully clear that the damage has already been done. The credits roll with Alyx crying over her father's corpse. You are left staring down at her, helpless to do anything about it. I get shivers just thinking about that scene.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Hellgate: London

First off, Best Buy can suck it. I really hoped the games I ordered would have arrived on THURSDAY, instead of today, so I could have actually played them all weekend. But anyway...

I picked Hellgate: London first, mostly because I've been dying to play a new RPG. So far, I haven't been disappointed. Ironically, most of the controls are identical to WoW, so I had no learning curve whatsoever.

I picked the Blademaster as my class of choice, since along with wanting to play a new RPG I've been wanting to also play something melee.

So right now I'm the proud owner of a level 4 Blademaster, and I'm questing my way through the demon infested streets of London. Let the screenshots speak for themselves:


Holy smokes.  The last post I wrote for this blog was on October 18, 2017.  Through the little more than  two years since, this blog has be...