Tuesday, December 25, 2012

KSK Least Bowl Ballott 2012

Results to be announced at half time of the Pro Bowl!
Create your free online surveys with SurveyMonkey, the world's leading questionnaire tool.

Friday, December 21, 2012

NFL on Fox Sent Me A Patriot Cleatus

Short version: I started following everyones favourite football robot, "Cleatus", on Twitter a few weeks ago. He is kinda funny in a kitschy sort of way. One day he tweeted a contest where if you retweeted him, you were entered for a contest to win a Cleatus Hero Figure. I retweeted just for fun, but I actually won!

Qaplah! Well, today the UPS guy shows up with a package, and lo and behold, I had received my Cleatus figure, but not as I expected! I had received the grittiest Patriot robot ever, "GREATUS".

It is simply amazing. If you read the back of the box, it details how Greatus epitomizes all of the core qualities that a True Greatriot represents: High motor, "tough as nails", scrappy, and most of all, GRITTY.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Movie Review - The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

(I swear on Durin's Beard, this pic is the extent of my backlash and spite.)

What I intend to do is give a relatively spoiler free review of the first Hobbit movie. I am going to try to point out various elaborations without "spoiling" anything, but I would warn people now that it is possible I could inadvertently reveal something YOU consider a spoiler. If that is the case, I apologize. That being said, after the review there are just a couple of things I want to spoil, so stop reading after the warning!

Those of you that are familiar with Peter Jackson's "The Lord of the Rings" movies will be comforted to see some similar cinematic effects almost right away to settle the viewer snugly back into Middle Earth. The "present" time takes place about 60 years prior to the LOTR trilogy, and Middle Earth is a calmer and cheerier place. There is little burden on the land from Mordor, and the Dwarves and Elves can afford to be snippy towards each other as they see fit, being both races proud and stubborn.

Surprise number one! Before Bilbo inadvertently hosts a large meal for 13 Dwarves and a Wizard, we are treated to an exciting history of Dwarvenkind in Erebor, and the evil of Smaug that befalls them. The Dwarves of Erebor are taken from the height of their prosperity and planted firmly low on the "food chain" of Middle Earth's free peoples.

Cue the actual beginning of "The Hobbit" now! I give credit to Martin Freeman for nailing all the "kindly, yet highly flustered" our poor Bilbo expresses by the sudden appearance of Dwarves demanding food and emptying his larder. His quaint politeness stands in an almost comedic contrast to the gruff, road-worn Dwarves making the early sequences very light-hearted and amusing.

For the viewers familiar with the book and associated material, Jackson delivers on many of the key visualizations and interactions that make the story complete. Even though there are tweaks here and there, only the most staunch and unmoving lore purist would even notice, let alone care. Poor old hapless Bilbo even forgets his handkerchief, which is unceremoniously remedied by Bofur.

One amazing aspect of the movie was the groundwork they lay for revelations concerning the "Necromancer" that is only hinted at briefly in the book. As a movie viewer, you are treated to some "behind the scenes" looks at events that will become very important in the later movies. However, because the implications are not clear for many viewers, these scenes can seem a little confusing and conflated.

By the end of the movie, the most important goal is accomplished: the upright, well-to-do, and stuffy Mr. Baggins sees fit to break free of societal norm and go on an adventure that is quite different than having afternoon tea with Old Gaffer Gamgee. There is magic, swords, legends, and dragons! Is there much more one can truly ask of a true fantasy movie?

My score is an "A-", it is a wonderful movie filled with all the Middle Earth beauty anyone could ask for, but it is not without blemish. Still, only the most cynical would let these few blemishes ruin what can be a very fun time with a Middle Earth movie that is more light-hearted than its very successful preceding trilogy.










Spoilers! The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

The Good

-We finally get a few glimpses of the tremendously darty and secretive Dwarf Women! Guess what? NO BEARDS! That Aragorn is such a joker!

-Azog may lead the Orcs at the Battle of Five Armies? It's looking like it!

-The White Council is shown voicing their concerns about the Necromancer, The Witch King, and Dol Guldur. 

-Radaghast the Brown makes an appearance!

The Bad

-Radaghast the Brown makes an appearance! No, your friendly writer has not lost his senses. Many will dislike the depiction of Radaghast. Even though it is cool they included him, he is a screwy character whose interpretation is very contrived. I personally found him fun, just because Radaghast was never known as the best Wizard of all and he has not the standard to live up to like Gandalf may. However, even my fellow movie-goers found him somewhat distasteful.

The Ugly

-My biggest beef with this movie is that they allow some very modern collocations of linguistics and contemporary sense of humour leak into the movie. (Particularly with the Great Goblin of Goblin Town.) About the only way it could have been worse would be having Jar Jar Binks with dreds and gang colours saying stuff like, "Thassa waz meesa saying!" or, "Aws hell nos!". I deeply resented that sort of etymology being used in the movie.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Li'l Beef Moe's New Room

The results are in, and Li'l Beef Moe is ready to get his blunt on and go Beast Mode on Half Ounces AND hos!!!

Thanks to everyone that participated.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Poll - Beef Moe's New Room

Qaplah, yintaghs! The Mighty Feklahr is coming in at warp speed with a HOT new poll for the interwebs! The situation is simple, "Little Beef Moe" from Pet Society has a new room and is making an EXCLUSIVE offer to decorate his new room by letting YOU, the internet, decide. Look through the options, and choose your favourite.

What should the theme be for Beef Moe's new room?
pollcode.com free polls 

The selection will be made on or around December 1st, 2012 with the highest vote gainer being the "theme" for the room. Will YOUR favourite win? THERE IS ONLY ONE WAY TO FIND OUT, WEAKLING! VOTE NOW!!!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Collectibles Fun - Grune the Detroyer

As of this writing, I had found a Grune the Detroyer (a moderately obscure villain from the Thundercats cartoon, but one *I* think is really cool) action figure at an antique mall for $6. For a collector nerd like me, I was in full blown "Yippee!"

Grune was in pretty rough shape, though. A lot of the paint had worn off and he was sort of grungy/cruddy in some places. This led to my decision to clean him up, touch up his paint, and even add some artistic interpretation of my own. I will give just a brief rundown of the changes and updates I made for anyone that might be interested, but I sort of hope the picture speaks for itself.

  • Filled in the blank spots of his silver armour on front and back.
  • Filled in the blanks spots of his black gloves and shoulder gear.
  • Freshened up the red on his leg plates.
  • Freshened up black and silver on boots.
  • I updated his helm with some silver on the studded areas.
  • I sort of blanked/whited out his eyes for a sort of ethereal appearance.
  • I frosted and variates streaks in his hair to give the appearance of age.
Finally, I offer a brief yet tremendously lulzy clip of Grune from the old Thundercats cartoon. I apologize, but the user that uploaded the clip disabled embedding, though. (???)


Sunday, May 20, 2012

Roots of Fangorn - Boss Strategy Strat

Please click on image to enlarge.

I realize it looks like there is a lot going on in this diagram, but once you understand what the components are and what function the play into this battle, you and your fellowship can beat this fight with little or no hassle and get some decent loot!

As you enter the room (yellow star) you will see a large cave-like room with six roots (brown circles) and a large spider standing in front of a waterfall (dark green star). The fight will not start until the tank gets close enough to the spider (very close). Make sure everyone is in the room, because webbing will close the entrance behind you!

Once the fight starts, there are a few things to be aware of that will make a break an attempt at this fight:

1. The boss does a strong frontal AOE attack.

2. Throughout the course of the fight, small spiders will descend (light green arrows) from the ceiling to poison the roots, and if they touch a member of the fellowship they will poison them so severely that it is virtually impossible to heal through.

3. Throughout the course of the fight, the boss will randomly spit a stacking poison DOT on a fellowship member. If you get 3 or more of these poisons, it becomes very difficult to heal. If you get more than 5 of these poisons, it is almost impossible to heal.

Here are the solutions for these obstacles:

1. Our good friend, the tank (red star) will need to grab the boss (large dark green spider) and drag him over to a wall (small yellow arrows) between two of the roots. The two nearest are a good choice. The tank puts his butt up against the wall, and (theoretically) no one else gets hit by the frontal AOE.

Our other good friend, the healer (signified by the heart),  will set up shop safely away from large spider and where the initial two small spiders drop. Being near the ranged DPS (or at least where they can easily see you) is a great idea.

2. To deal with the adds, we would preferably have a strong ranged dps class (Hunter or Rune Keeper, signified by large orange triangle) and a Crowd Controller (Lore Master or Burglar). Here are some important notes for dealing with the adds:

A. Early in the fight, the add that drops near the waterfall is the most dangerous and needs to die first. The add in the cave (it spawns from where your fellowship entered the room) can be mezzed until it can be nuked down)

B. Later in the fight (reason unestablished as of this writing) a THIRD add (signified by green, dotted arrow). When this add starts coming in, it becomes primary target, waterfall secondary, cavern add third. This new add will land very close members of the fellowship and it is imperative that it is dealt with immediately. If you have more than one CC class, assign one specifically to watch for this add and keep it mez locked until it can be nuked down.

3. As the poisons add up, the ONLY way to remove them is to wait for a white text to appear on the screen that tells that one of the roots is attempting to remove the poison. The root will be glowing softly green (see diagram in lower right hand corner). You have an incredibly short window of opportunity to run to the green light (which instantly removes all poison). if you miss it, you need to go back to where you belong and wait for your next opportunity (chug a heal pot if you need to).

Miscellanea by position/class:

Tank-the only thing you have to do is keep the boss faced towards a wall. Two other things you can do if it is seemingly safe is to clear your poisons if you notice one of the roots nearby are glowing AND interrupt the boss if you see an induction and are able.

Healer-this is a tough fight to heal. However, if everyone is doing their jobs, you should not get any adds on you from healing threat. Try really hard to clear the poisons on yourself as often as possible. Hopefully there will be some type of secondary healer to help out.

Ranged DPS-you guys are the real heroes of this fight and can determine if it goes well or if it sucks. Keep in mind how you want to utilize your DPS. We want slow inductions and Damage Over Time on the boss (we don't need to kill him quickly) we want ALL fast acting nukes available for when the adds descend. Killing the adds as fast as possible is a thousand times more important than DPS on the boss. When you do dps the boss, do only single target dps. AOEs are not needed and could compromise a mezzed target and that could wipe the group.

Melee DPS-you are only doing ONE thing, long term, sustainable SINGLE TARGET dps on the boss in the white area BEHIND the boss and out of his AOE. AOEs are not needed at all and can in fact mess up mezzed adds which can wipe the group. Single target DPS the boss, and interrupt the boss if you see an induction and are able to.

CC-you should be assigned to mezzing a dropping spider. Fortify that job at the cost of almost all else. The ranged dps should be picking up and killing the waterfall dropping spider first, so the CC should be "patrolling the area (signified by blue circle) to get any and all dropping spiders mezzed. These spiders come fast enough that burglars need to run in mischief regardless of how they are traited so that their mez is up as often as possible. CCs can throw debuffs, interrupts, and single target ranged dps on the main boss, bit not at the expense of letting any of them adds through.

Finally, there are really just two things to say that summarize just what the heck needs to be done to win this fight:

1. Mezzing and killing the adds as fast as possible is more important than DPSing the boss itself. If the adds are taken care of correctly, the boss will eventually just die.

2. Clearing your poisons when you are able will make the fight a million time more survivable and less stressful on your healer(s).

Good luck!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

St. Patrick's Day Feast 2012

This is a simple chronicle of my wife's valiant effort for our feast on St. Patricks' Day of 2012. The main course was a meat pie stuffed with lamb! Here it is fresh out of the oven:

Doesn't it look scrumptious?
Now here is a supper! The lamb in the meat pie was roasted with garlic and rosemary and made into filling with chopped leeks. The mashed red potatoes are flavored with buttermilk and parsley and topped with shredded applewood-smoked cheddar. The kale chips are sprinkled with olive oil and salt and baked until crispy.

Now, let's see what is cooking for dessert!
What's this? Whole wheat Irish soda bread soaking in cream and sugar...
...sweetened berries...what can we do with this?

Oh, let's just bake a bread pudding! :D Here it is straight out of the oven.
And here we are served with a cream topping. BEST ST. PATRICK'S DAY EVER? Maybe!