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Don't count me out

July 14, 2017 | 23:18 | Written by: snake911

I'm not done yet, but yeah, a lot is going on in real life.  You see, I got this new job and it's super rad, but due to a long commute and learning everything I need for this new position, it has not only taken away much of my free time, but it's also taken the free time of my free time; which is what I used for working on this website.  Kind of a shame to see this place running in low powered mode because I had an awesome feature for the Games Journal that was timed to coincide with an anniversary, but alas, I don't think I'll make that deadline now.  Priorities, people!

I'll still post stuff here, but there will be huge, canyon sized gaps between each posting, so don't check weekly for new content.  Instead, check on a monthly basis.

That's it for now.  Love y'all!

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One giant leap

May 23, 2017 | 22:10 | Written by: snake911

Over the weekend I finally got around to getting a new phone, upgrading from my iPhone 4 that I purchased back in 2010 and replaced it with the latest iPhone 7.  Yep, that means I had my previous phone for 7 years!  Welp, can say without a doubt that I got my money's worth out of that phone.

And boy, did I have a lot of catching up to do, feature wise.  But before all that, I had a heck of a time transferring my data to the new phone.  I guess 7 years was too big of a leap because of incompatibilitys of what is expected of backups.  With my iPhone 4, it was syncing with iTunes from my old MacBook with Snow Leopard.  This meant my iTunes was a version from, I think 2014, so it wouldn't have been compatible with my new iPhone.  This meant I needed to buy a new Mac, so a few months ago I bought a Mac Mini in anticipation for the new phone.

While going from an iPhone 3G to an iPhone 4 was a piece of cake, where I was able to transfer everything without an issue.  Going from 4 to 7 was a pain as it was only able to transfer my music and nothing else.  My contacts and photos did not transfer, and going to iCloud didn't work because the OS on my 4 was too old.  So through trivial methods, I was able to copy my photos to my Mac Mini and then utilize iCloud to make sure this doesn't happen again.  As for my contacts, I decided to just manually enter them into my new phone, and then again, utilize iCloud so this doesn't happen again.  This was both a blessing and a curse because while it was a pain reentering contacts, it gave me an opportunity to purge a lot of phone numbers of people who I haven't talked to in over a decade.  Now my contacts list is slim and trim to where I'm even considering making full use of it by actually including photos with my contacts, but we'll see.

But yeah, this new phone is great.  I got the 256GB version so I wouldn't have to worry about juggling space on my phone as I was doing with my 32GB iPhone 4.  Podcasts made it a pain to manage because space was so low, but now I'm utilizing only 1/8 of free space, so it'll be a long while before I have to worry about that again.  On top of that, it's great to use apps again that require logins because the apps on my old phone were severely out of date and were not allowed to log into systems without a more up-to-date version.

Pictures look incredible on this new phone!  Compared to my old one where pics looked grainy and yellow, this one looks so crystal and great!  Now I no longer fear the humiliation of texting sending pics to others where the resolution is off and the pics are low quality.

Then there's the snappiness of how everything works like how fast apps launch or how fast the maps app can pull data over the cell network.  It makes commuting with directions much easier, and when streaming music, much more pleasant as I'm not waiting for buffering or for the app to load in data.  Finally, I'm able to see this new thing called emojis rather than an alien face in a box.  Such wonders!

Yep, I'm back in the saddle again with modern tech.  Weird as it is to say, but I feel like I'm back with society again rather than being an outsider.  But then again, I was able to get by ok without the latest and greatest for many years, proving that you don't necessarily need the latest phone year after year.

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Mind the gap

April 24, 2017 | 22:14 | Written by: snake911

Apologies for the radio silence, but there have been some IRL things on my mind.  But starting with this post which is acting as a warm up, content should be streaming back to normal output, so I'd say check later in the week for another new post that'll have, you know, something actually worth talking about, unlike this post about that's really about nothing.

I like all my posts to have an image, but the message above has no associated image I can think of.  So instead, here's one that has absolutely nothing to do with the above paragraph.  Good night!

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A room full of mystery and suspense

April 10, 2017 | 19:39 | Written by: snake911

Over the weekend I took the day off from playing games and actually participating in one in real life.

I went with a group on Saturday in Anaheim to a place called Mission Escape Games, a business with a unique service of entertainment I've never experienced before.  Here are the details: you and your group are placed into a room and have 60 minutes to escape.  No items are given to you and you must empty your personal belongings into a box for safe keeping (or to be used to cheat the game with).  So to get out, you're solely dependent on what you find in the room in order to find your escape.

The theme of the game we played is called Escape The Hydeout, and as you probably guessed, it's related to the story about Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.  Here's a blurb of the theme from the official website: "The Hydeout is a Victorian-era mission inspired by the Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Be prepared to go into the good doctor's home but beware of his dark side. Dr. Jekyll has been acting strange and gone missing. It's up to you to find out what has happened to Dr. Jekyll before Mr. Hyde shows up..."  Spooky stuff.

The room is chock-full of items and it's up to you and your crew to scavenge for any clues that may be able to help aid in your escape.  A total of six can participate in the game, but we rolled with four.  Let me stress the fact that teamwork is essential for getting out of there.  No one person can be the hero.  In the end, we were able to escape and beat the game with only two-and-a-half minutes left to spare!  All of us contributed in solving the puzzles, so it was a team effort that got us out.

While exiting there were flyers for other similar escape games like this one all around Orange County.  One's in Tustin while two others were in Irvine, I believe, and a few others in neighboring cities, too.  All seem to have different themes, so you'll have a different experience at each location.  One had a haunted carnival circus vibe to it.  I'm sure that one will creep a lot of people out if clowns are involved.

This is definitely one experience I will never forget.  It was challenging, unique, clever, and just plain fun!  If there's one of these escape games around you, I'd recommend trying it at least once and hopefully get the same satisfaction that I got when we beat the game.  Resident Evil's got nothing on this!

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Follow your ghost. Read this feature!

March 30, 2017 | 22:24 | Written by: snake911

This is it!  Here are the last articles for the Ghost in the Shell Post Factum feature.  And just in the nick of time too as the premiere for the live-action movie is tomorrow!  Just like before, click on the image or the title's name to read the articles.  Alternatively you can get to the feature's index page by clicking the image link for the feature on the right-hand side of this page, or any page for that matter.  Or right here!

I'll wrap things up by giving the index page a facelift now that I've barley managed to finish the writing in time, so expect to see more than just a list of hyperlinks and that rushed header image.

Ghost in the Shell: Arise
With a new decade we get another refresh for the franchise.  This time with a younger cast as we get to see how the members of the group coalesced to form the offensive, anti-terrorist unit we love so dearly.

 

Ghost in the Shell: The New Movie
A movie for the Arise series, this concludes the arc story dealing with Fire-Starter.  If you dig the action, then this'll be a treat for your bloodthirsty senses.  Unfortunately the trailer for it is better than the movie itself.

 

Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - First Assault Online
Making good on their not so great first-person shooter game they brought to the PSP, they made one for the platform the genre was intended to be played with: the PC.


 

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Backhacking you with some new intel

March 8, 2017 | 22:11 | Written by: snake911

Chugging right along we have four more items to look at from Ghost in the Shell.  After this we have one more batch of content to post and that'll be everything the franchise has to offer prior to the live-action film, which, I'm still planning to see when it hits theaters later this month.

Click on the image or the title's name to read the articles.  Click here for the feature's index page.

Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence
Mamoru Oshii gets back to work on the sequel to his 1995 film.  In one sense the pressure is on due to the critical acclaim the original film had, but on the other hand it's lessened in thanks due to advancements in technology made to make certain visual aspects to the film easier to produce than it was back in '94/'95.

 

Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - Game PS2
Not sure how easy or difficult it was to turn the style of TV show into a video game, but they were able to do it, impressing this guy who holds the TV series on a high pedestal.  Also, can you believe its been 7 or so years since the last and only Ghost in the Shell video game came out?

 

Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - Game PSP
Although it wasn't necessary, a decision was made to extend the SAC series by developing a portable game for it.  I say it wasn't necessary because the PS2 game already filled the role for being the product for this form of media.  Even so, I'm not complaining as anything SAC related is good.

 

Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - Solid State Society
Closing out the SAC series with a bang, we get a made-for-TV movie that adds one additional chapter to SAC saga before they wrap it up and move on to the next iteration for the Ghost in the Shell franchise.  See the team take on an old familiar name that the franchise has tackled for...like, the fifth time.

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