Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Today I Smiled: Bragtoberfest

Most of you probably know of the Bragtoberfest event that was going on this month thanks to Izlain and J3w3l. I don't really like the notion of "bragging" so I opted out this time but I figured I'd still give some (kinda late) support, especially as J3w3l keeps finding all these fun flash games just like she did in the previous NBI. Here are my results for Axon and Feed the King, both being fun little games. I doubt the scores are very good in comparison to everyone else though! :P

Axon brain building.

One hungry king!

Well, I suppose I have to brag about -something- but it's something not of my own. My wife plays Candy Crush you see. I started playing it with her but stopped at level 169. Now when I Neverwinter she crushes candies. When I Warframe, she crushes candies. Whenever I'm on the computer, she crushes candies. Sometimes when we watch TV, she crushes candies. Curious, I recently asked her what level she is up to.


This is without buying any in game powerups. O_O

Lastly here's a pretty cool music clip of "Me and my broken heart", performed by people driving about in a car. Have a good day everyone! :P

Monday, 20 October 2014

Dracula Untold

Beware: Small spoilers ahead!

This re-imagining of the classic vampire tale tells of how Vlad the Impaler came to be (in the first 5 minutes) and how he turns into the legendary Dracula (the rest of the movie). The plot is pretty straight forward and mostly predictable. Fortunately the special FX, action sequences, and main vampires (remember that Vlad starts as a human) are all above average making it pretty enjoyable to watch.

Beware my poetry. I mean, powers. I'm the original batman!

As Vlad powers up it's pretty fun to see the extent of his powers. A pity then that the vampire of the mountain keeps his hidden for most of the movie, the same for his agendas. He is one loose thread that leaves some room for Dracula 2 or whatever. The main enemy Vlad must contend with are the vast number of Turks invading his home. Not sure how or why so many would journey there but it's like the Sultan brought his entire army with him.

There are stupid parts though like blindfolding said army and trying to march them in formation across uneven terrain. Yep, this works in the movie but in real I suspect more than a few people marching in armor would have tumbled and caused a hilarious domino effect. Also I didn't take the Sultan to have a loud enough voice to adequately command everyone even if he was in the center of them.

Anyway it's a decent enough flick though it suffers from a somewhat silly final scene and the usual unanswered questions. Regardless, I give it 3 silver coins out of 5.

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Today I Smiled: First Attempt

A book of ideas and a handful of recycled business cards. That's what my first attempt at making a board game looks like. Well, I guess due to lack of a board that makes it a card game? Designed to be competitive vs other players I gave it a whirl with my wife and on top of losing (lol!) found many problems with some balance mechanics and inclusion. Two player mode is fine but with any more I could see parts where only two people are active while the rest are idling for too long. Oh well, back to the drawing board. It was a good learning experience that definitely made me smile. :P

Friday, 17 October 2014

Tropico 3: Idle Advisor

[This is part of my Tropico 3 Journal!]

Due to my victories I am next assigned as an advisor to the presidente of Isla de la Rosalita, a small island with lousy geography and while there were a number of harvestable resources half of them were near inaccessible so I ignored them altogether. Seeing the lack of land for housing I built an immigration office first to stem the tide of new comers. Then the presidente does something stupid and enforces a pay rise to all the farmers and puts us so deep in debt that we can't build anything. This is made worse by a world economic crisis that makes our exports more worthless than before. As a first, both US and the USSR have gunships circling our waters. Who says they can't get along?

I say we launch a simultaneous attack in which you go first.

This doesn't stop the presidente from spending more money we don't have, donating funds to his cousin's jet pack research and getting a half price power plant that semi-melts down. Good thing humanitarian aid camps are free. As people begin striking I am forced to begin executions as stopping work or paying off the protesters is not a wise option. Sure, some people become rebels due to this but I had already foreseen it happening and was slowly building up the military presence on the island to deal with those traitorous scum. I believe in the end we killed them all, the highlight being that the rebels occupied the radio station to broadcast their opinions. I simply told the army to setup C4 and collapse the whole thing. There is no negotiation with terrorists and so called "freedom fighters".

Eventually KGB agent Boris Pavlovich asks for help to remove the current presidente through violent means. I refuse but he goes through with it anyway and somehow win the following elections (102/12) as the starving, overworked, and terrified people love me. Or fear me. Whatever. The super powers never invade which is unfortunate, as the rest of the time this is becoming more like an idle game where I am just waiting for stuff to happen. Anyway, with no real opposition left this mission is completed - though I finish with the treasury in a state of staggering debt at -97k!

Welp, I've had enough of governing for awhile so I pack up my bags from Tropico for a vacation elsewhere. Hope you enjoyed reading! =)

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Tropico 3: The Pirate King

[This is part of my Tropico 3 Journal!]

Looks like the pirates liked me so much that the more violent military types took me to a nearby island to be their king! It's not a bad place with four easily accessible mines and some oil. Not so much of a logging industry though, and -no- elections. It's a monarchy after all. Turns out it's my job to actually change that with reforms and putting together an advisory cabinet for free speech is just the first step toward that goal. I do question their line of trying to make rum the island's primary export though, given I don't make a single factory for that.

With the eager US pushing forward money to help the island become a democracy it is pretty easy to keep everyone, especially the supposedly monarchist military people happy. The religious folk get a bit upset when I allow Mardi Gras, "Tropicostock" (Woodstock) and other various freedoms (like same sex marriages) to happen but I simply remind them with a visit from the Pope that they should know their place. My aide, Penultimo then manages a stroke of brilliance - getting self proclaimed monarchists to wear the red knight's cross making them easy targets to fall prey to "accidents" for my secret police. I kill most of them before the rest rebel, a number small enough for my army to annihilate without my further intervention.

Soon enough the citizens are ready to move to a democracy, and though I win the following election against Itzlar Pena (135/3) the lesson is taught and the mission is completed - I am free to let someone else rule once my term is up, and since I know that none of the citizens could handle that I made an alliance with the most qualified faction when it comes to liberty: The USSR!

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Tropico 3: Stability of Law

[This is part of my Tropico 3 Journal!]

After personally killing some rebels and winning the next election I was contacted by local crime lord Don Pez with a 8k donation towards the island. He also mentioned something of owing him a favour but I didn't really listen at that point because people were striking, rebel numbers were growing, and the threat of a military coup kept coming up. Fortunately with Don's donation and some development aid from the US, I was able to enact the Social Security and Food for the People edicts which bought enough time to settle down all those factions.

Soon I was building hotels, a casino (where I had to jail cheating intellectual scum), a zoo, a bank, TV and Radio stations and all those other wonderful things we often take for granted. The drain on the power grid was initially too strong so I needed a second power plant constructed mirroring the first as the tourism trade began to take off. Things were going so well that I actually had to start stopping people from coming into the island (250+ population at that point) and had to build extra roads to lessen traffic!

Don Pez tried to blackmail me to kill someone at that point to which I refused so he tried to slander my reputation. Who are the people to believe, a crime lord or the guy that gets the Pope to visit? No, my sway at that point is too powerful and I am too well liked by all to have any further issues, even when pirates began attacking freighters I just challenged their leader and defeated him.

All up it was a victorious campaign and though I only pocketed 14,482 pesos (low) in the Swiss bank account, Carmencita was doing well. As a final act to ensure the criminal elements didn't get out of hand I allied with the US, letting them build a military base and basically take over.

Ameeeeeriiiica! (art by Sharpwriter)

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Tropico 3: A Generous Thief

[This is part of my Tropico 3 Journal!]

After my previous success I was asked to help govern the isle of Carmencita, which is basically populated by modern pirates. Before I go further I had to modify El Presidente a little for this mission as it's main goal was to see how much money you can swindle into his Swiss bank account which is an impossibility if you are "incorruptible", so for this map I've swapped that out for "well traveled" which seems to suit this story. Too bad I didn't get to bring that huge wallet I amassed from the last island.

Carmencita has a few minable spots going for it, but with no oil or harvestable trees and very little agriculture spots it is pretty clear early on that I'm going to need tourism to keep this place afloat. From past experience I've learned to build up things for the residents first though including a police station which I often neglected previously as "incorruptible" gave -30% to crime. I also setup a humanitarian aid camp right away for free medicine and food while I setup fisheries, and got a sweet deal on a half price power station from the USSR, because they are awesome at building those things.

Maybe the Marked One will pay me a visit!

My thinking about tourism is verified when I learn that the movie "Pirates of the Tropics" is released and adds +15 to tourism. Alas, I'm nowhere near ready with my airport still half constructed and no other hotels or touristy venues constructed. Unsurprisingly I already have a handful of rebels as well, some of whom I had to personally kill when they attacked one of the mines (always the mines?). No doubt they also are the cause behind various workers striking across the island and as much as I'd like to send the army in I know that's what the rebels want so this time I'm just paying them off. If I'm going to be stealing from their treasury anyway (the main point of this mission) I figured I'd at least share. :P