Saturday, February 26, 2011

| Kiddos

Yeah, there's just a night and day difference between Haylee and Bennett.

Haylee was high spirited and always very active, but little man is just a downright Evel Knievel fearless banzaiiiiiii warrior.

| Ah, kids!

Jesus! Glad your son is OK!

My wife doesn't have any brothers, and although she's hardly a girly-girl, she doesn't get little boys AT ALL. I try to explain to her that there's nothing to it, basically it's all about mayhem and dick jokes, and she just stares at me. I think if we have any boys she's in for some surprises.

Edit: Almost forgot what I came here to post, holy crap you guys we need to get back into Space Fleet, how perfect are these?

Friday, February 25, 2011

| Friday Night at the ER!

So the boy does a backward flop off the couch earlier tonight.. and manages to land on a metal airplane toy right on the back of his head, splitting open a nice inch and a half bleeding wound. Ugh.

Short story, he's ok. Longer story, 3 hours later in the ER on the "fast track" with a baby with a bleeding head wound (ugh)... he had his wound cleaned, hair cut and glue applied.

The whole time, he's in great spirits and looking to play, asking to get down so he can run around, etc. LOL, people were in a little bit of disbelief.

I'm just glad he's ok. Not looking forward to seeing what the bill from the ER is going to look like, however. Yikes.

Now, it's Cheerios and chocolate chip cookies for being a good boy at the hospital and he should pass out for the night.



Both copies failed on install.


Total fail.
Just tried installing from my backup DVD and got an error. Going to try my original Oblivion DVD and see if it works (but it looks like it has a small scratch that could be a problem as well... crap).

*crossing fingers*
If you want to upgrade the actual look of the game, there is an AMAZING texture pack out by QARL. But, just make sure your graphics card can handle it!

There are also some good no-tiling texture packs and some other this and that available. One of my favorite was a lighting mod that lit up windows and torches in the cities but sucked up a lot of CPU usage.

Of course, the game is now, what, 6 or 7 years old? So any machine built in the last year or two can probably run all that at max max.
The look and feel of the game world it self (graphically speaking) will be the same with some modifications to armor, weapons.

You should see a difference with your in-game menus and interface though. It should be a lot less intrusive with the DARN/DARK UI installed? I think they're maroon?

Other than that, it sounds like you've got it figured out.

If you want to see a big difference, make a save point and then go wandering off into the hills / caves as a low level character and see how long you last :)
OK, I -think- I've got all that crap installed. The Mod Manager lists Oscuro's, DarnifiedUI, saddlebags and all this other jazz as starting up, but other than a mention that my torch hotkey has changed and that the xp mod has loaded, I don't see many immediate differences when I launch the game. Is that normal?
And, I found my Oblivion CD. Yay. I, too, have downloaded some mods and will probably get this bad boy installed today.

I still logged in and farted around with Wow last night. Made level 29. Played some new Gnome dungeon I hadn't seen before. It was strange, but kind of fun.

If I'm going to keep playing with you guys in the 20's, then I need to stop playing until the next Action Team night, lol.


Honestly, if you just pick up a handful of mods, it's good to go.

Oscuro's Oblivion Overhaul. You can get it patched all the way out or go with the last full release. There's only 2-3 patches I think.

Oblivion XP - turns the leveling system into more of a DnD style where you get to spend the points however you want.

Oblivion Mod Manager - makes it super easy to stack mods, load mods.

Oblivion Script Extender (OBSE) - needed to get the system to run the more complicated scripts from some mods

Beyond that, I like a couple of other cosmetic / simple stuff. I'm definitely a screw-with-it-as-little-as-you-have-to kind of guy.

For instance, there's better map, better interface (DarkUI) mods. You can get a "better water" mod. I highly recommend the saddlebags mod for your horse, so you can use him as a storage bin on those big dungeon / cave raids.

There's also some other game tweaky stuff like Better sneaking (that makes it a bit harder to sneak around in close proximity to bad guys).

But in all honesty, if you do nothing but OOO, it still kicks ass. The rest of it is just extra icing on the cake.
Ugh... you need to register, and it's $10.

Any chance you could endsay emay ehtay infozay onay ehtay ownlowday?
If you can view this page on something awful, this has really clear instructions on getting it all modded up:

Let's Reinstall Oblivion v.3

Also, another alternative is to try that total conversion I mentioned recently called Nehrim which is a completely new game. So far it's been really fun:


"A massive project put together with a large dose of efficient German engineering, this is a total conversion mod for Oblivion that turns it into the game it should have been. Won't go into any great detail about it since it has it's own official thread, but I will say, on a personal level, that even a heavily modded version of Oblivion can't compare with this." - ebert

| bleah

Sore throat. At least it's a reason not to drive to work in this absolutely shitty weather.

I guess it's also a reason to spend all day downloading Oblivion mods? (Damn you Art for rekindling my interest! :) ) How the hell do you get started on this shit? It seems like everywhere you go have vaguely circular instructions that want you to install at least 25 separate items. "Install Camera Oscura, then FreeBase, then LongStud, then LongStud Resource Package 5. Note: do NOT install Camera Oscura unless you have already installed LongStud Resource Package 5."


Thursday, February 24, 2011


Between this and Storm of War (or Cliffs of Dover, or whatever they're calling it now)... I'm going to have to find the money for a new computer. WOW.


It has, apparently, been snowing all night long. School is canceled and we're under a big ole blanket of the white stuff! Haylee already has this week off, but now Michelle gets to stay home too. Weee!

Man, the roads look terrible, like a solid sheet of ice.
fArt and jA-El, I picked up a great "proper" light weight cast iron wok a few years back. It works great, but I have to work in small batches due to the fact that are stove just does not pump out enough BTUs. To make those things work like they should, you need some crazy heat. The rolled carbon steel ones are great too, but again require lots 'o heat. Seasoning is not hard at all.

Everyone here in SF is all ga-ga that we may get snow in the next day or two at sea level. Hasn't happened in 35 years or so. It would be cool, but even the meteorologist just don't know what is going to happen.


Wednesday, February 23, 2011

| Warburnt

Not gunna lie, a month or so into this and I'm starting to get burned out. =(

I want to love it, I really do. The size of the world is impressive, very cool.

Best thing about WoW: Chatting with friends and shooting the shit (and bad guys). Also, the Team Bravo missions were fun. That was a little different.

Worst thing about WoW: Meh, still trying to figure out why I'm not in love. I should be, right? Millions of people sucked in, addicted, totally love this thing. Why don't I love it too?

I've been trying to put my finger on whatever "it" is that isn't connecting for me, and I'm still not convinced I have it figured out. As a result, any explanation I try to give isn't going to be very eloquent or well spoken, unfortunately.

1. The combat system is a little impersonal (right word choice?). Most fights are won or lost and I don't feel like if I had done anything differently (chosen a different sequence of skills to use) that it would have changed the outcome (without being ridiculous). I (or my group) either tend to WTFPWN everything in sight, mashing our primary attack buttons / follow up abilities for 60 minutes straight. In a room /cavern / building full of bad guys, a group of 5 angry, warring, scrapping, slicing, dicing, bashing adventurers doesn't gain any interest even from bad guys' allies sometimes just a few dozen yards away in direct line of sight...? Or, in combat, things go the other way and I get totally annihilated by an enemy or gang of enemies and there just wasn't any way for me to not get killed.

2. Equipment / Advancement. Thousands of quests and micro-upgrades make the process of improvement or finding a neato item / piece of equipment seem unimportant because it will probably be outdated in the next mission (sometimes on the next quest I cash in).

3. Abilities/Professions/Specialty-Rank-Whatever Points. I get 20 abilities and only 10 quick slots to effectively use them. I'm still not sure what the point of professions are. They don't seem necessary? I'm level 26 and 35 on my characters and I'm not sure what I would gain (or would have gained) by picking up a profession or two.

Blah, I guess I'll stop bitching. I don't want it to sound that way. I'm honestly just confused. Why am I not addicted to crack? lolz


So, not bad, not bad at all!

I hear you on the hot cock sauce. Siracha (sp).

Hmm.. didn't think about 5 spice. Should pick up some of that. All in all, this turned out pretty good. Nice and sweet and goopy like the American palate demands. lolz

The rest of the family are wusses, so I had to add my spice after the fact. Which didn't quite work as it usually does. Maybe next time I'll make a separate, smaller batch for me to put the peppers in and cook.

| do yourself a favor

Buy a cheap chinese wok at Ranch 99 - properly season it (look up seasoning a wok) on the net, use large fire when cooking lots of oil, fresh garlic, fresh ginger, and fresh onions.

Buy - Dried hot peppers, 5 spice, white pepper, (All asians get their rice at costcos) get the pheonix brand, corn starch to thicken sauce, Sweet soy sauce (thick kinds are good too), black vinegar, Hot bean paste, Oyster sauce, sweet plum paste and now youre ready to cook all sorts of asian food! Especially kung poa chicken.

EDIT: oh i forgot, I personally like the Rooster brand hot sauce that you find in all the vietnamese restaurants. Nothing beats the cock sauce. oh yeah.


Never tried making it myself, figured why not? Stopped by the store, grabbed some sesame oil, water chestnuts (canned, do they even make them fresh?), broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, soy sauce, peanuts.. I already have the rest of what I think I need, brown sugar, seasoned rice vinegar, chicken, calrose rise.

Dunno. Tonight is experimental cooking! Yeehaw!

I figure I'll leave out the spicy element until I plate, then I can spice up my dish as much as I want and the rest of the family can enjoy without the heat.
And now the sun is out.. lol. Crazy Washington weather. Of course, that means it's going to turn into wet and the re-freeze tonight. Good times.

Probably going to need to make a run to the library today with the kiddos so I can avoid the ice-fest tomorrow and Friday. We're supposed to hit a record low in the next day or two for late February.

I've been meaning to look up a good recipe for Kung Pao chicken and try that out at home. Maybe this will be a good excuse.


It's snowing like a mofo! Ran outside with the dogs and kiddos and had some fun playing around. Good fun was had by all, but now I have to defrost the kid-cicles and deal with wet dog smell. lol.

You can tell how hard it's coming down by looking at the first picture of Bennett and the follow up with Haylee. They're only a couple minutes apart at most.

Olive getting covered in snow:

Bennett running around like a madman in the snow:


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Allllmost to level 20, lol.

Hope that's good enough to meet up with you all tonight.

Also, there's another instance in Westfall Deadmines with a buncha ogres we could take on?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Finally over the level 10 hump and the rogue is doing much better. Of course, it helps that I actually bought some weapons that do any kind of damage, lol.

Against better advisement, I went with the combat specialty. Just seemed to fit my style better? Now I'm able to take on multiple targets and not get repeatedly butt pumped if I get jumped out of nowhere. The ability for hitting multiple enemies at once is pretty nice.

Ambush does some good initial damage as well. That's good. I dunno if I'm going to get up into the 20's by tomorrow though, that may be tough!

| Working on Presidents day

So private sector advantages is we gotta work! luckily it's pretty dead today, no ones gung ho about working, applied time off etc.

My first week in Wow - I've logged probably at least 20 hours (half a workweek, yikes). Got my wow bug back. but I think i'll burn out after a few weeks as i normally do. In that week, I got myself 2000 gold (halfway to epic mount), joined a guild.

Just some random thoughts about MMO's -

1. I think the primary reason, no other MMO has made it, is that no one wants to do another grind game. If your heavily invested in one game, say WOW, it's not very likely to jump in another one where you have to kill another million monsters for xp. EVE did well in this regards with the auto-leveling, which rudy commented to me about liking.

2. Minecraft was different also, because it allows the user to build content in-game which shared similar success to other in-game building games that have come into the market.

I think if there's going to be another successful MMO, there has to be something different offered that the above 3 hasn't.

| steam is the devil

i just totally impulse-bought all the Tomb Raider games for $20 bucks on Steam. It's the daily sale that ends this morning at 10am, and here I am 2:20 AM buying games from work. I gotta say, it's a pretty sweet deal.
TR: Anniversary - $2.50
TR: Legends - $5.00
TR: Underworld - $7.50
Guardians of Light - $5.00 (this is that recent Laura Croft game that's from the isometric view and 2 player co-op.)

The only one I'd played before was Underworld on the 360 a year or so ago - it was a lot of fun! So, this is cool to get the trilogy and the new arcade game for $20 bucks - add it to my sick list of unplayed Steam games. :(

I was also THIS close to getting Minecraft, Art. Luckily the minecraft site was fucking up yesterday, so didn't follow through. I'll probably get it this week though.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Man, if I'm going to get my Rogue up to 20-something level I've got some serious work to do by Monday/Tuesday night.

If I'm going to be able to get with you guys on Tuesday, it will need to be probably a little later, like 9:30-10pm start time.
I'm pretty sure you're the reason I got Oblivion back in the day in the first place. Yeah, I modded it all to hell and had some fun with it, but even so, just story/world-wise, I burned out on it. I'll link you this total conversion - it pulls some files from your Oblivion install, but otherwise it is completely unique and everything from dungeon/world layouts and monster loot was all "hand-crafted" - sounds fun. Too many games, too little time.

Nehrim: At Fate's Edge
Make sure your Oblivion is the latest patch: HERE
1. Get the main files here: First - 1.6 gb I think, yowzer!
2. When you first launch it you need to use the "Nehrim Launcher" and then deduce from the german the "data" tab and select the Nehrim files. After that I think it loads up off the regular shortcut.

There's also specific mods to enhance it graphically and to help with some of the engrish. The little I played was pretty awesome and it basically felt like an entirely separate and new game. If you already have Oblivion installed, give it a shot.

Here's the Something Awful thread for it with tons of information and help to get it going. Neat!
SA Thread

~ going to bed :( so sleepy ~
Also, that Oblivion XP mod changes the way you level through the game. You no longer get incremental points as you use certain abilities, you get XP that once you level up, can spend however you see fit. Much more traditional-RPG style. LOVE IT.

I'll have to check out that Oblivion mod.

I'm a huge proponent of Oscuro's Oblivion Overhaul. You ever do that one? It pretty much fixes 99% of what made vanilla Oblivion pretty meh.

Also, love the DarkUI mod for the menus / interface. Better water, XP, better sneaking, no guard ESP, and a mod for arrows/magic that effect the arc / speed of the shot based on the quality of the bow/arrow.