Thursday, January 8, 2015

Gaming Dictionary For The Non-Gamer: First Person Shooter (FPS)

I live with a woman who has zero knowledge of video games. We've been together for the last six years, and she couldn't tell you the difference between an FPS and an RPG. This has turned my attempts at discussing my video game passion into long-winded explanations on the subject of what "pwning" means. As a result, I've long had an interest in creating a dictionary for people who don't follow video games, in the hopes that they might finally be able to understand what their friend/relative/significant other is talking about.

Our first entry in the dictionary is First Person Shooter (FPS).

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Working for GameStop Without Working for GameStop

My girlfriend never buys me anything for Christmas. She doesn't want to risk getting a game that I already own, or purchasing a game that I have no interest in, so she always just gives me cash. Then I drive to the store and buy a game with her in tow. That's just how our gift giving works.

So today I drove down to GameStop to see if I could find anything that I was interested in and didn't already own. (This is a silly problem that you develop when you own over a thousand games.) While I was digging through the "$20.00 bin", an older gentleman started asking me about Dragon's Dogma, so I explained to him what the game was, and that the controls were a bit wonky. Afterwards I started shuffling through the PS3 games, and the older gentleman asked me about Diablo III, then Saints Row, etc. He inquired about various titles, and I answered his questions.

Meanwhile the GameStop employees sat there behind the counter, staring at me while I explained the various titles to this gentleman. Finally he picked up Dark Souls, and I said, "Oh, it's good, but it's hard." He responded, "Then that's the one I want," and proceeded to the counter to check out. As he was paying, I resumed my search for any game I wanted but didn't own. Just then, I heard the employee behind the counter say, "You know this is hard, right?"

So the guy checked out and left, and I decided to pick up Shadows of Mordor, listed at $59.99 new, but on sale for $39.99.

It's kind of a silly story, but every time I walk into GameStop and they offer to assist me, I always think to myself, "Look at me, I'm one of you." This was just the first time I had an opportunity to actually use my video game knowledge to help someone. I really enjoyed myself, too. I just love talking about video games. I can't help it. I don't know if the gentleman thought I was a GameStop employee, or if the employees were upset by what I did, but the guy had questions, so I answered them.

Monday, December 29, 2014

An Argument Against Pirating Because You Can't Afford It

As a youth, I considered myself very anti-establishment. I didn't dye my hair green, or rock liberty spikes, but I always stood against big businesses, which I felt were entirely corrupt. So it's a little strange to be here writing this now, arguing against the little guys who found a way to stick it to the man, but here I am nonetheless.

I still believe businesses are corrupt, but I also believe that piracy has given these same businesses a smoke screen to take more heinous actions. Think about the SOPA and PIPA type laws that have been created under the guise of protecting businesses from piracy. Individual pirates aren't really sticking it to the man, they're giving the man an excuse to invade privacy, and install dangerous software on customer's computers.

So what's the reason? Why pirate anything? The two most common excuses I've heard are, "Because they don't deserve my money" and "Because I can't afford to pay for it!" These two excuses seem to be the most acceptable, perhaps because they have an air of nobility or a hint of desperation. The problem is, neither excuse is a very good one.

If you don't want to give your money to the company behind the product, simply don't buy the product. There's a logical issue here, the company is undeserving of your money, but they've released a product that you must have? That doesn't make sense. I, personally, am not a fan of Apple, and to this day, I've never owned a single Apple product. It's that easy. If you don't like the company, just don't use their products.

Now, the more heart-wrenching of the two excuses, you just can't afford it. This is a frequent one among video game pirates. While it is a tad difficult to argue that you can't afford a ten dollar CD or DVD, dropping sixty dollars on that new Call of Duty title can be a bit hard on the wallet. Here's the issue, it isn't that you can't afford it, it's that you can't afford it right away. The price a video game tends to drop severely after the first six months of release. So that expensive new title will almost certainly drop to $19.99 in the first year of its release. You could also wait for a Steam Sale, where titles frequently drop by 50-90% off. Then there's Humble Bundles,, Black Friday, etc.

There's just too many avenues that you, as a gamer, can take to avoid paying full price to argue that you pirate because you can't afford it. I, personally, own over 420 games on Steam, and I've paid less than four grand for the lot over the last five years. If you're not sure how to buy games on the cheap like many gamers do, visit these websites (which I'm in no way affiliated with).

Cheap Ass Gamer
Reddit: Game Deals
Humble Bundle

It's as simple as that.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Steam Winter Sale 2014 - Five FPS Titles For Under Five Bucks

You may not know this, but there are rules to Steam Sales.

  1. Never buy a game for less than 75% off, unless it's a Daily Deal or Flash Sale.
  2. Never buy a game for less than 75% off, unless it's a Daily Deal or Flash Sale.
  3. Always wait until the final day of the sale to buy anything that isn't a Daily Deal or Flash Sale.

Fight Club is still a topical reference, right? Anyway, I decided to make a couple of lists of titles that I think you should buy during the Steam sale. I can't guarantee that you'll like these games. How could I? I don't even know you... Still, these are games that I enjoy, and haven't found any major issues with, so go ahead and click read more to absorb the awesomeness that is my opinion.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Car Repairs Around Christmas Time

It never fails. Almost every year around Christmas time, something goes wrong with my truck. In November of 2011, I needed a new serpentine belt and new tires, costing a cool $900.00. Then in January 2013, I had to get another serpentine belt because the tensioner in my truck was bad, and the shop that replaced the belt back in 2011 didn't replace it. That repair, plus the stupid tire pressure sensors that go bad every thirty seconds ran me another $800.00. Now, December 26 of the year 2014... I had to drop another $1,500.00 on repairs. Either I'm just a sucker that gets taken at every mechanic I go to, or my truck hates Christmas. Maybe it's both.

Today I got another set of new tires, because the tires I bought in 2011 were somehow dry-rotted, cupping, and "about to separate." Add in new brakes, new rotors, brake fluid, and a radiator pan... BOOM! $1,500.00. I really need to start studying vehicle repair, it's just too damn expensive to pay other people to do it.

Honestly, it's probably about time for a new vehicle, but I love my truck. I've had it for a decade now, it's nice and paid for, and it's never put me in danger. I may sound crazy when I say this, but I really believe the truck has an equal hand in keeping me safe when I'm on the road. It brakes when I tell it to, even when the brake pads were gone, and it was grinding metal on metal. It's just a good, reliable truck, I mean hell, I guess it even has things go wrong on a reliable schedule. I just wish it didn't choose Christmas time to cost me a fortune.

I love you, truck! (Just stop costing me money, damn it!)

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas from!

So here's the deal, I bought these Steam keys back in 2012. They might work, they might not, I just don't know. If they do work, comment below and let people know that you got it so they don't try. Merry Christmas and a happy poopyear... er.. New Year. I'm so immature.

Battlestar Galactica Seasons 1-4 for $4.99 a piece.'s Digital Week is here. If you have a Kindle Fire or Fire TV, you can get some decent shows and movies for pretty cheap. My personal pick of the litter is Battlestar Galactica. Seasons one through four are on sale now for $4.99 a piece. That's in standard definition or high definition, either one, $4.99. That's the entire run of BSG for a total of $20.00, how awesome is that? Unfortunately, the Battlestar Galactica mini-series isn't included in the sale, so if you want that, you'll have to drop $9.99 for the standard def version or $12.99 for the high def.

Direct links to seasons:
Battlestar Galactica Season 1
Battlestar Galactica Season 2
Battlestar Galactica Season 3
Battlestar Galactica Season 4

Sale ends January 3rd, 2015.