About Me

My Photo

Personal Website: http://www.joyelpuryear.com.

Professionally, I am a web site, web application, and mobile developer.  I also do custom programming, coding, design, and graphic/print design. Programming is actually my specialty, and I know a variety of languages. Xhtml/CSS, PHP/Mysql, Javascript/Ajax, C++, Java, XML/XSLT, JSON, and various other languages.  This also extends into my personal life, because I partake in a great deal of personal development projects when time allows.

Personally, I am a major fiction buff.  I am interested (heavily) in Video Games, Comics, Reading, Writing, and Development (programming/developing on personal projects.  I can consider fiction a life style more than anything.  I am also a very devout christian, and always live to the best of my ability. I am a gamer to such a degree, that I consider myself a life style gamer. I play games of just about any genre, any type, and there are very few games I have not played/beaten, or at least tried at some point.

Besides that, I am heavily into reading, and writing.  I read comics, novels, fiction, non-fiction, and various other things.  I am very heavy into comics.  When it comes to writing, I enjoy mostly writing blog posts, fiction, science fiction, and building worlds and universes.

I am also into anything related to fantasy, fiction, or science fiction.  There are a lot of other hobbies I participate in, but those are the core of them.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Civilization 4 Basic Tips

I have recently been putting a lot of time into Civilization IV. I have all of the expansions (Beyond the Sword and Warlords).  I have been playing one specific game for awhile, and during the time I have been playing, I have learned several tricks of the trade. Some of them are listed below.

1. Don't use Nukes unless you really know what you are doing. They are not as good as in Civilization 5, and they cause permanent relationship damage. For every nuke you drop on someone, that person gets a -2 to their relationship rating. Anybody that considers them "good friend" will also take a relationship hit.  It's OK early game, but once you get late game it becomes very hard to retain your game. After several nukes, it starts to affect how often the enemy goes to war with you. On top of that, after nukes are dropped several times, random areas are started to get affected by Global Warming, which causes a lot of damage to cities and surrounding tiles. Basically the minor affect that you get from nuking enemies, is nowhere near worth it for dealing with end-game attacks and relationship issues. There are times when you just need to buckle down and build up because you are unable to get out of war. The more nukes you drop early game, the harder it is to stay out of war late game when it is critical (sometimes) to be able to get built up with units and so forth.

2. Accept Vassals early on, when the situation allows you to (assuming they are not enemies with every person on the map).  During my big game, I was refusing vassals throughout the entire game. At least 10 different times I had every small power asking me to become my vassal.  I kept refusing.  Then, late game there were two major civilizations, mine and one other. Somehow those civilizations that asked me to vassal, all suddenly asked him. So I had one civilization that had almost as many cities as me, and a huge military, suddenly obtain almost every civilization on the map as a vassal. So I had myself, another huge civilization that had about 5-6 vassals, and 3 other civilizations on the map. The other 3 never went to war with me, but the other large one constantly started wars because I had mistakenly nuked them two times early game, and treated them like crap. So basically I am up against about 70% of the total map all attacking me at once ,and every time the major civilization starts war, they all start war since they are vassals.  This is making it very hard to build up enough military to expand at this point since all my resources are spent trying to defend.

That's about it for now. As I get other advice, or thoughts I will add them here.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Skyrim Mods - A collection of some of the better mods out there.

I play a lot of games, obviously..I make it a  habit of writing blog posts about topics that might help others. Generally they are things that take me a lot of time to figure out so it saves other people some time.  I have started Skyrim and I am well over 100 hours into the game. I have collected various mods that I have been using since I started playing. Some I added early, some were added later in the game..but I have played extensively (for the most part) with them and some of the ones that I use come highly recommended.

So the current mods I have installed are listed below, each in their own section with respective links...as well as my thoughts and personal notes about each one.

Before we start, please note that currently I am using NMM to download and install ALL of my mods for Skyrim. They recently had some issues and went down for a few days, they are still working on ironing out some of the issues but for the most part they are all ironed out.

Let's begin, the NMM you want to download is located here: http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/modmanager/?

I am starting to use this site as my main modding site for both downloading mods and building/uploading mods. The NMM only works with certain games, but they are working on adding more game support on a regular and consistent basis.

The mods I recommend below were all installed and managed via NMM, which is highly recommended. I have had nothing but a wonderful experience using the program so far.

Official Patches and DLC

1. Dawnguard
2. Hearthfire
3. Dragonborn
4. High Resolution Texture Pack

These are simply the official released content (I did not list Fall of the space core because I don't personally use it..but you can if you want).  These are simple included in the Steam legendary edition anyway...So not hard to get, I don't remember if the texture pack came installed or you had to install it separate..I don't remember that.

Unofficial Patches and Fixes

The following mods are for misc patches and fixes:

1. Skyrim Misc Patches Collection - SMPC - SMPC http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/23833/?
2. Unofficial Dawnguard Patch - Unofficial Dawnguard Patch http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/23491/?
3. Unofficial Dragonborn Patch - Unofficial Dragonborn Patch http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/31083/?
4. Unofficial Hearthfire Patch - Unofficial Hearthfire Patch http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/25127/?
5. Unofficial High Resolution Patch - Unofficial High Resolution Patch http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/31255/?
6. Unofficial Skyrim Patch - Unofficial Skyrim Patch http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/19/?

The game is VERY buggy by itself. All of these patches help to fix the crap out of Skyrim and that's all they do..fix errors, issues, bad references, messed up conversations, broken questions and so forth. If you don't use ANY other mods whatsoever, I still highly recommend these..it will greatly improve your Skyrim experience.

UI Overall and options configuration menu

Before downloading ANY other mod, download SkyUI here: http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/3863/?

This actually redoes the UI in a nice way, but more importantly this has the only mod management mod built into it that allows other mod configuration options to tap into it. Almost all major mods are supported and almost every mod on this list has all of it's configuration options built into this small mod that is built into SkyUI. From what I can tell the mod configuration feature is not standalone and is ONLY found within the SKyUI mod. Highly recommended.

Misc Mods

1. Run for your lives - http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/23906/? Very basic mod. NPC's run and hide in their houses when dragons come, helps to keep the NPC's from dying. I think this one is glitchy or having trouble working though...I recall it not really working, but I still haven't uninstalled it..I may check later and make sure, and perhaps tweak it to work if it doesn't.

2. Realistic Needs and Diseases - http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/26228/?- Highly recommended. I am running it out of the box settings.  The only setting I changed was the sound affects of the yawning and so forth..but this makes the game much more realistic without being overly annoying.

3. Dynamic Time Scale - http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/10594/? - High recommended especially with the Realistic Needs and Diseases...it slows down time at intervals and makes the game MUCH more realistic.

4. A Matter of Time - http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/44091/? - Just simply shows what time/date it is in game in a nicely laid out UI added to your HUD. Very simple and easy to use/configure.

5. Smart Cast - http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/43123/? - Redoes a lot of the casting systems and works very well. High recommended and also has several multi-cast options and presets as well.

Bigger and Higher End Mods

1. The Dawnspire - http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/20751/? - One of the best housing mods in the game. I use it all the time. It allows void storage features which let's you dump ALL your items into one place, then it auto sorts them throughout the house..even has a spell so you can link up to void storage anytime you want..I never have to run back anymore I just throw my stuff all into Void Storage via the spell and sort it out back at my house when I am ready. It auto-sorts everything and has more features than it knows what to do with.

2. Vilja in Skyrim - http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/26393/? A companion, and one of the best ones on the market from what I can tell. This is the one I have used the entire game, and it was very well put together. The voice acting is weak at times but it is still a VERY good mod.

3. Blaze of Eventide - http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/25097/? One of the best mount mods I have found and the mod has a lot of great features. I ride him everywhere and have not ran into any problems with it so far.

4. Phenderix Magic Evolved - http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/5898/? Adds a guy in various cities that allows you to buy a lot of really cool spells. Pretty good spells at that. Definitely worth getting.

5. Falskaar - http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/37994/? - A college student who tried to get the developers attention..he finally got hired by Bungie. He created this continent/quest mod and it is one of the best and highest rated content mods created. He even got hired by Bungie because of making this mod, which was his sole reason for making it. Very good mod and definitely worth the download. This is content I would even pay for it's so good.

6. Halls of Dovahndor - http://www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/mods/25448/? - A house. A very large house with good features. You cannot access it until much later in the game. I haven't been to it yet, but It had a lot of endorsements and seems like a very good mod. I am definitely going to use the house as a secondary living area when I get to that point in the game (nowhere near that point in my current save file).

In Closing

As I come up with other mods that I download/use I will post about them here, and continue to leave feedback about mods that I consider must haves for Skyrim. Thanks for reading. Any questions, concerns or recommendations feel free to throw them in the comments. I always respond and will even update the blog post with contributions.

Thanks!


Monday, November 25, 2013

Netherworld 2013 My Experiences

I know it's a little delayed, but I had a lot of other personal projects going, and haven't yet had time to write this out. So here goes.

For the first time in my entire life I went to a haunted house. I have a habit (because I am a IT guy) of trying to find the best of the best when I do anything, or work with anyone. In this situation I wanted to find the best haunted house that I could drive to, and I found Netherworld. It was rated number one in Georgia.  My first thoughts were that it wasn't going to possibly be scary. It was just weird people running around in costumes, I was wrong.

Let's just go through my entire visit, and you can decide for yourself.

Parking

Finding the place wasn't too hard, with the GPS. Parking on the other hand, was a nightmare. It depends mostly on what time you get there. They open the actual haunted house at 7. I think they open the ticket booths a lot sooner. If you come REALLY early, you can get parking inside the Netherworld parking lot. There is very limited parking and they fill up quickly. After that you basically have to drive down the road, and start filling in parking lots. Every single company or parking location down the entire street sells parking, so you need an extra 5-20 dollars in cash just to pay for a parking spot. The later you come, the further down the street you find yourself parking, the more expensive it is, and the further you have to walk. We got there pretty early, had to pay 10.00 for parking and walked close to 3 blocks or better.

People can be seen walking for up to 1-2 miles from parking spots to get there.

Once parking is out of the way and you are on location, then things get started.

Tickets, Lines, and speed passes

Lines are absolutely huge if you have a standard ticket. You buy tickets for 30.00 and they are unlimited use for that night. Then you get in one (of two) lines. Each long is very long, stays long, and overall the later it gets the longer the line stays.  You can bypass the lines if you pay for a speed pass. They are 50.00 and well worth it. I plan on getting those from now on when I go for repeat years. It's easy to get in/out of the ticket booth but there is a horrible line for each section of the haunted house.

If you don't mind staying in line then go for it, otherwise (if you have the budget), I recommend the speed passes.

Parking Lot + Gift Shop

The parking lot (after dark) is filled with a lot of people running around in really cool costumes. I saw a zombie type dude, a lady that was suppose to be blind with a minion she was following around, and much more. Overall the entire parking lot experience was great. Nothing was too specifically scary in the parking lot but because they ran freeform through the crowds, it's very easy for them to get the drop on you and startle you out of nowhere. They are specially trained at sneaking up behind people and popping up at the worst possible moment. I got startled more than once definitely. They are all good actors with a good sense of humor, and very good at what they do. It makes the entire parking lot experience a lot more fun.

The gift shop is worth it. The items are pretty expensive, but they are things you can't really get anywhere else and are almost all Netherworld themed. If you have some extra cash, you can find some cool stuff here but it's not required to have a good time. You can enjoy the haunting house, parking lot and skip the gift shop altogether and still have a great time. If you do have the funds then most of the items I reviewed seem very high quality. We got a shirt and a jacket from them, and so far the jacket has been very high quality, so was the shirt. Everything there seemed very high quality, but still a little over priced (but what gift shop isn't).

Haunted Houses

This specific year there were two haunted houses, each with a different theme. All I have to say about this is wow. They were both awesome experiences, both were next to terrifying, and very fast paced. The only thing I don't like was the line format because you have someone behind you wanting you to keep moving. You can't slow down for much time to enjoy the sites without someone rushing you, especially if you get someone annoying behind you. The first time I went I had a kid that kept poking me and saying keep moving. I was having a great time but very angry about the aggravation. The second time I went through it was at a better more enjoyable pace. So if you have the wrong people behind you, it really lowers the level of enjoyment overall.

Anyway..the special affects were top notch, the actors playing the various scary monsters were extremely enjoyable and VERY lifelike. They were both really good themes, and really great experiences. There were also several times where various environmental affects actually touched you, and certain affects leave you wondering how they are even humanly possible. There was one point when there was a bridge that really felt like it was going upside down. Even now, I cannot tell if it was really twisting sideways a lot, or if i was all an optical illusion.

Closing

In closing I am 100% sure that I will never miss another year of Netherworld. Every year I plan on going to Netherworld, buying speed passes and having a ball. I recommend anyone with the extra cash and some time on their hands to try Netherworld.  If you had a choice between any of them in Georgia, I would definitely recommend Netherworld haunted house.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Skyrim - Quest Checklist

Well I just recently went back to playing Skyrim..I was 20 hours into a save that I took a break from, so I wanted to try picking it back up again.  Obviously, since I am a perfectionist I needed to come up with a way to make sure I didn't miss anything. Hence a quest checklist. I went through the guide and created a check list (so to speak) breaking down all the quests and so forth by type. Includes all the main quests, civil war quests, factions quests, side quests and so forth.  It also covers a great deal of "misc only" objectives. Overall it has all the "quests" in the game. I did not include checklists for quests that are in self contained dungeons, and obviously a lot of the misc ones (just in the misc objectives) but overall the core quests throughout the entire game are all included below in a quick, easy to use, easy to fill out checklist.  I might expand on this list later if I decide to add more sections for my own personal list, if I do then I will post it here as well.

This was a personal list for personal use, the Status is the only field you have to update. Just clear out "Complete" from the few I have completed, then as you finish them in your game, just mark them Complete. You can copy/paste them directly into a word document, Google Drive, or practically any other type of document.

Any suggestions/requests, feel free to leave comments and I will considering following through on any quests, and obviously if you have any questions about Skyrim feel free to ask those in the comments as well.

Main Quests

Quest NameStatusNotes
UnboundComplete
Before The StormComplete
Bleak Falls BarrowComplete
Dragon RisingComplete
The Way of The Voice

The Horn of Jurgen Windcaller

A Blade in the Dark

Diplomatic Immunity

A Cornered Rat

Alduin's Wall

The Throat of the World

Elder Knowledge

Alduin's Bane

The Fallen

Paarthurnax

Season Unending

The World-Eaters Eyrie

Dragonslayer

Epilogue


The Companions Quests

Quest NameQuest GiverStatusNotes
Main: Take up Arms
Complete
Main: Proving Honor

One of these turns you into werewolf. Be careful once cured you can't get it again.
Main: The silver Hand

One of these turns you into werewolf. Be careful once cured you can't get it again.
Main: Blood's Honor


Main: Purity of Revenge


Radiant: Animal Extermination 1Aela
After Take Up Arms
Radiant: Animal Extermination 2Aela
After Take Up Arms
Radiant: Hired MuscleFarkas
After Take Up Arms
Radiant: Trouble in SkyrimFarkasCompleteAfter Take Up Arms
Radiant: Family HeirloomSkjor or Vilkas
After Take Up Arms
Radiant: Escaped CriminalSkjor or Vilkas
After Take Up Arms
Radiant: Rescue MissionSkjor or Vilkas
After Take Up Arms
Radiant: Striking The HeartAela
After The Silver Hand, Before Blood's Honor
Radiant: Stealing PlansAela
After The Silver Hand, Before Blood's Honor
Radiant: RetrievalAela
After The Silver Hand, Before Blood's Honor
Radiant: Totems of HircineAela
After Glory of the Dead
Radiant: PuritySkjor or Vilkas
After Glory of the Dead
Radiant: Dragon SeekersSkjor or Vilkas
After Glory of the Dead, and main quest A Blade in the Dark

College of Winterhold

Quest NameQuest GiverStatusNotes
Main: First Lessons


Main: Under Saarthal


Main: Hitting the Books


Main: Good Intentions


Main: Revealing The Unseen


Main: Containment


Main: The Staff of Magnus


Main: The Eye of Magnus


Radiant: Rejoining the CollegeN/A
Complete First Lessons.
Radiant: Tolfdir's AlembicTolfdir
Complete First Lessons. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: Out of BalanceDrevis Neloren
Complete First Lessons. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: An Enchanted JourneySergius Turrianus
Complete First Lessons. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: Restocking Soul GemsSergius Turrianus
Complete First Lessons. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: Valuable Book ProcurementUrag Gro-Shub
Complete First Lessons. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: Shalidor's InsightsUrag Gro-Shub
Complete First Lessons.
Radiant: The Atronach ForgeN/A
Complete First Lessons. Complete Ritual Spell Quest Conjurer to unlock full potential. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: Forgotten NamesN/A
Complete First Lessons. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: AftershockTolfdir
Complete The Eye of Magnus.
Radiant: Rogue WizardTolfdir
Complete The Eye of Magnus.
Arniel's Endeavors: Part 1Arniel Gane
Complete Under Saarthal.
Arniel's Endeavors: Part 2Arniel Gane
Complete Part 1.
Arniel's Endeavors: Part 3Arniel Gane
Complete Part 2 and The Eye of Magnus.
Arniel's Endeavors: Part 4Arniel Gane
Complete Part 3 and The Eye of Magnus.
Apprentice Radiant: Brelyna's PracticeRelyna Maryan
Complete Under Saarthal.
Apprentice Radiant: J'Zargo's ExperimentJ'Zargo
Complete Under Saarthal.
Apprentice Radiant: Onmund's RequestOnmund
Complete Under Saarthal.
Ritual Spell: DestructionFaralda
Destruction Skill 90
Ritual Spell: IllusionDrevis Neloren
Illusion Skill 90
Ritual Spell: ConjurationPhinis Gestor
Conjuration Skill 90
Ritual Spell: RestorationCollete Marence
Restoration Skill 90
Ritual Spell: AlterationTolfdir
Alteration Skill 90

Thieves Guild Quests

Quest NameQuest GiverStatusNotes
Main: A Chance Arrangement


Main: Taking Care of Business


Main: Loud and Clear


Main: Meet the Family

Shows up in Misc.
Main: Dampened Spirits


Main: Scoundrel's Folly


Main: Speaking with Silence


Main: Hard Answers


Main: The Pursuit


Main: Trinity Restored


Main: Blindsighted


Main: Darkness Returns


Radiant: No Stone Unturned


Radiant: Reparations

Complete Taking Care of Business. Have to get kicked out of the guild to get this one.
Radiant: Moon Sugar Rush

Complete Meet the Family. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: Armor Exchange

Complete Scoundrel's Folly.  Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: The Litany of Larceny

Complete Meet the Family and Finding a Larceny Target in subsequent quest. Shows up in Misc.
Additional Job: The Numbers JobDelvin Mallory
Complete Meet the Family.
Additional Job: The Fishing JobDelvin Mallory
Complete Meet the Family.
Additional Job: The Bedlam JobDelvin Mallory
Complete Meet the Family.
Additional Job: The Burglary JobVex
Complete Meet the Family.
Additional Job: The Shill JobVex
Complete Meet the Family.
Additional Job: The Sweep JobVex
Complete Meet the Family.
Additional Job: The Heist JobVex
Complete Meet the Family.
City Influence Quest: Silver Lining

Complete Meet the Family and 5 additional jobs in Markarth.
City Influence Quest: The Dainty Sload

Complete Meet the Family and 5 additional jobs in Solitude.
City Influence Quest: Imitation Amnesty

Complete Meet the Family and 5 additional jobs in Whiterun.
City Influence Quest: Summerset Shadows

Complete Meet the Family and 5 additional jobs in Windhelm.
City Influence Quest: Under New Management

Complete Darkness Returns and all 4 other influence quests.

The Dark Brotherhood Quests

Quest NameStatusNotes
Main: Delayed Burial

Main: Innocence Lost

Main: With Friends Like These...

Main Sanctuary

Main: Sentenced To Death

Main: Whispers in the Dark

Main: The Silence has been Broken

Main: Bound Until Death

Main: The Cure for Madness

Main: Recipe for Disaster

Main: To Kill an Empire

Main: Death Incarnate

Main: Hail Sithis!

Side Contract: Kill Narfi
Complete Sanctuary. Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Side Contract: Kill Ennodius Papius
Complete Sanctuary. Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Side Contract: Kill Beitild
Complete Sanctuary. Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Side Contract: Kill Hern
Complete first 3 side contracts. Available during Whispers in the Dark. Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Side Contract: Kill Lurbuk
Complete first 3 side contracts. Available during Whispers in the Dark. Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Side Contract: Kill Deekus
Complete first 5 side contracts. Available during The Silence has been Broken.  Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Side Contract: Ma'randru-jo
Complete first 5 side contracts. Available during The Silence has been Broken.  Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Side Contract: Kill Anoriath
Complete first 5 side contracts. Available during The Silence has been Broken.  Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Side Contract: Kill Agnis
Complete first 8 side contracts. Available during The Silence has been Broken. Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Side Contract: Kill Maluril
Complete first 9 side contracts. Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Side Contract: Kill Helvard
Complete first 9 side contracts. Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Side Contract: Kill Safia
Complete all previous side contracts. Unavailable during Death Incarnate.
Radiant: Destroy the Dark Brotherhood!
Complete Innocents Lost, and kill Astrid.
Radiant: Honor Thy Family
Complete With Friends Like These...
Radiant: The Feeble Fortune
Complete Breaching Security and earn the bonus. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: Where You Hang Your Enemy's Head
Complete Hail Sithis.
Radiant: Welcome to the Brotherhood.
Complete Hail Sithis.
Radiant: Cicero's Return
Complete Hail Sithis. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: The Dark Brotherhood Forever
Complete Hail Sithis.
Radiant: The Torturer's Treasure Part 1
Complete Where You Hang Your Enemy's Head. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: The Torturer's Treasure Part 2
Complete Where You Hang Your Enemy's Head. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: The Torturer's Treasure Part 3
Complete Where You Hang Your Enemy's Head. Shows up in Misc.
Radiant: The Torturer's Treasure Part 4
Complete Where You Hang Your Enemy's Head. Shows up in Misc.

Civil War: Stormcloak Rebellion Quests

Quest NameStatusNotes
Main: Joining the Stormcloaks

Main: The Jagged Crown

Main: Message to Whiterun
Main: Battle for Whiterun

Main: Liberation of Skyrim

Main: Rescue from Fort Neugrad

Main: Compelling Tribute

Main: The Battle for Fort Sungard

Main: A False Front

Main: The Battle for Fort Snowhawk

Main: The Battle of Fort Hraggstad

Main: Battle for Solitude


Civil War: Imperial Legion Quests

Quest NameStatusNotes
Main: Joining the Legion

Main: The Jagged Crown

Main: Message to Whiterun

Main: Defense of Whiterun

Main: Reunification of Skyrim 

Main: A False Front

Main: The Battle for Fort Dunstad

Main: Compelling Tribute

Main: The Battle for Fort Greenwall

Main: Rescue from Fort Kastav

Main: The Battle for Fort Arnol

Main: Battle for Windhelm


Daedric Quests

Quest NameQuest GiverStatusNotes
The Black StarAzura

Boethiah's CallingBoethiah
Requires level 30.
A Daedra's Best FriendClavicus Vile
Requires level 10.
Discerning the TransmundaneHermaeus Mora
Requires level 15 to begin blood harvest.
Ill Met By MoonlightHircine

The Cursed TribeMalacath
Requires level 9.
Pieces of the PastMehrunes Dagon
Requires level 20.
The Whispering DoorMephala
Requires level 20. Requires main quest completion Dragon Rising.
The Break of DawnMeridia
Requires level 12
The House of HorrorsMalag Bal

The Taste of DeathNamira

Thieves Guild QuestsNocturnal

The Only CurePeryite
Requires level 10.
A Night to RememberSanguine
Requires level 14.
The Mind of MadnessSheogorath

Waking NightmareVaermina
Requires level 14.

Minor Faction Quests

Quest NameFaction NameStatusNotes
Word Wall RevelationsThe Greybeards
Requires main quest completion The Horn of Jurgen Windcaller. Shows up in Misc.
Meditations on Words of PowerThe Greybeards
Requires main quest completion The Throat of the World. Shows up in Misc.
Rebuilding the BladesThe Blades
Requires main quest completion Alduin's Wall. Shows up in Misc.
Dragon HuntingThe Blades
Requires main quest completion Alduin's Wall. Shows up in Misc.
Dragonslayer's BlessingThe Blades
Requires main quest completion Alduin's Wall. Shows up in Misc.
Dragon ResearchThe Blades
Requires main quest completion Alduin's Wall. Shows up in Misc.
Tending the FlamesThe Bards College

Finn's LuteThe Bards College
Requires completion of Tending The Flames.
Pantea's FluteThe Bards College
Requires completion of Tending The Flames.
Rjorn's DrumThe Bards College
Requires completion of Tending The Flames.
The Heart of DibellaTemple Quests
Related settlement Markarth. Related divine Dibella.
The Blessings of NatureTemple Quests
Related settlement Whiterun. Related divine Kynareth.
The Book of LoveTemple Quests
Related settlement Riften. Related divine Mara.
The Bands of MatrimonyTemple Quests
Related settlement Riften. Related divine Mara. This is the quest involving getting married. You can only get married one time, and make sure it's the right person that I want to marry in-game long term.

Side Quests

Quest NameRegionStatusNotes
Blood on the IceWindhelm
Enter and exit Windhelm 4 times.
Forbidden Legend


The Foresworn ConspiracyMarkarth

No One Escapes Cidhna MineMarkarth
Complete The Foresworn Conspiracy
The Golden ClawRiverwood

In my Time of NeedWhiterun
Complete main quest Dragon Rising.
Kyne's Sacred Trials


Laid to RestMarthal

Light's OutSolitude

The Man Who Cried WolfSolitude

The Wolf Queen AwakenedSolitude
Complete The Man Who Cried Wolf.
Missing in ActionWhiterun
Enter and exit any of the buildings near the market in Whiterun.
Promises to KeepRiften

A return to your rootsBlackreach
Begin daedric quest Discerning the Transmundane.
Rise in the EastWindhelm

Rising at DawnMarthal
Contract Vampirism.
Unfathomable DepthsRiften

The White PhialWindhelm

Repairing the PhialWindhelm
Three days after completion both main quest The Throat of the World and side quest The White Phial.
Captured Critters

Shows up in Misc.
The Forgemaster's FingersOrc Strongholds
Non-Orc Race.
The Great Skyrim Treasure Hunt

Shows up in Misc.
Masks of the Dragon Priests

Numerous pre-requisites (see quests walkthrough).  Shows up in Misc.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Best Movies I Have Ever Seen

I am mostly a gamer...BUT I like movies, TV Shows and other stuff as well. I decided to go ahead and write a fairly short and simple blog post that gives some details on my favorite movies, and some of my favorite TV Shows. This is mostly just a hit list of recommendations to give people an idea of what I like to watch, and give them an idea of something they might like, or at least want to try.

I tried to make this all mostly spoiler free, but there might be a few minor ones that crept in there.

Inuyasha

One of my favorite anime's that were ever created. I have seen all the episodes and all of the movies. It is a very good series to get into if you like anime. I recommend just started with episode number 1 in season 1, and just going through them one season at a time. About season 2-4 somewhere around in there, watch the movies.  It is a very good anime that will draw you in very fast. You can buy the DVD's online but they are like 100.00 per season, at least the last time I looked. So the best bet is to find them online or look around for them. Definitely worth taking the time to watch.

Supernatural

By far the absolute best series I have ever seen in my life. I went all the way through the current season, and i am still watching it on TV every Tuesday.  It is the best series to get into but I do not recommend even considering getting into it mid season or not starting at season 1. You can find them all on Netflix and PSN, and Amazon. IT's a very popular series, very easy to find, and definitely worth it. The acting in the entire series is great, and I have yet to see a bad episode. Some of them aren't the highest quality (maybe 3 out of the entire run of seasons) but even those were good episodes.

The two main actors are some of the best I have seen and won multiple awards, and the pairing between the two is perfect.  They are great working together. I also have to say that I have not seen them cast a bad person in the shows. Every single character they introduce they seem to find the perfect actor/actress for...except perhaps in two situations, besides that they pick the best people for the best part and that really helps bring everything together into one of the best TV experiences that I have ever had the pleasure to watch in my life.

Blood Trinity

It's another anime. It isn't Inuyasha, but it was definitely good. It had a great story and brought some really good ideas to the table for people that have an imagination.  It is something to definitely think about if you have nothing else to do. It isn't a very long series so it takes less than a week (if your persistent) to get through the entire series and get it wrapped up, but it's worth every minute of it.

Limitless

One of the best movies I have seen. I have seen almost every move (almost) that has come out, whether it was in the theatre or on TV. This is one of the best ones, and by the end it really makes you think. The lead actor was perfect for the part and the special affects while they are on the drugs is even better. Seeing how they react once taking the drug. The movie is very good and its highly recommended.  Especially the ending, which will leave you with a huge smile on your face.

Mama

One of my favorite movies, with a pretty good plot line and two of the best child actresses I have seen to date. Child actors that actually have a great deal of talent to bring to the table, and together they really brought this movie together into an overall great experience.

White House Down

One of the better action movies. Probably one of the best ones I have seen. Jamie Fox and the other guy do a great job working together as a team. Brings in the right mix of Action/Adventure, and still keeps an air of comedy that only Jamie Fox can pull off. The movie is great from beginning to end, and one of the few movies that literally did not have any slow moments throughout. Highly recommended and definitely worth watching.

The Next Three Days

Ah..this movie holds a special place in my heart. A man's wife is wrongly convicted of murder, so he goes out of his way to get her back. The entire movie really made me think about a lot of things about life, the justice system, and how screwed up our court system can really be. Makes you wonder how many other people could really be suffering through something similar. I kept telling myself that if it had a bad ending I would hate this movie and never watch it again..so many times it seemed like it was going to drop off at the worst possible time, but the movie came through for me. It was  a great movie, a great ending, and just was one of the most powerful movies that I have seen to date. Probably on the list of one of my top favorite movies of all time.

The Conjuring

Saw it in the theater, and one of the only movies I have seen in the last few years that was actually scary. If you haven't seen it, then it is urgent that you see it. If your not much into horror movies, this is a whole different style of horror movie and you will still probably like it. Very good movie, VERY good soundtrack, perfectly timed throughout the entire movie to make you jump more than you feel comfortable. It was one of the better ones that I had seen, and one of the only ones that I actually had my eye on when I first saw the advertisements. Everything was perfect from the hype, the marketing, all the way down to the implementation. Definitely recommended.

Final

If I think of any more and/or watch anymore I will post more information about them here.

Grand Theft Auto 5 - Tips and Tricks - My Knowledge

I am a hardcore gamer, and as such I play a lot of video games. Due to the amount of experience I have playing games, I consider myself playing at a professional level most of the time and I have a great deal of gaming experience across all genre's. Probably moreso than  most gamers out there (not all, but the majority of them). I am also an obsessive perfectionist, so I find myself trying to get perfect games in the games I play, more often than not.  With that being said, I generally find and uncover things in a game that the typical gamer doesn't always find or realize right off. Generally I try to make notes of the things that I find, secrets I uncover in the game, tips and tricks, and so forth...in an attempt to help other gamers.  That is what this blog post is about.

The game I am going to write about now is the newest Grand Theft Auto installment, it's GTA 5.  I have been playing  (at the time of this first writing) over 100 hours in the game. I am close to 130 hours total, with a pretty good bit of achievements. I have finished all the spaceship parts, under the bridges, submarine pieces, nuclear waste, almost all of the freaks and strangers, bought several of the properties, finished about 75% of the main story missions, and I am currently working on the stunt jumps and some other things. Overall I have gotten a lot done in the game. Over the next few months I will finish the rest and close it out for a perfect game. I am taking a break from it right this minute in an attempt to get some time clocked in Skyrim.  However, I will be going back to it on and off for the next month or two until I complete it, please note that as I play the game in the coming months I might come back and add to/expand to this blog post to add more information.  Let's get started.

Middle Finger Time

The first thing I have noticed is a fairly simple.  If you are in a car, motorcycle, or other vehicle. Set your selected weapon to your fists, and fire. Your weapon will be your middle finger. You can give passer-biers, cars, and pedestrians the middle finger and your character will also throw in some color commentary during that time as well. This elicits an angry response from whoever the unlucky flickee is.

Most people probably already know this, but I didn't figure it out until late in the game, so I thought I would mention it.

Helicopter Access

In a minute I am going to talk some about the "Under the Bridge" events in GTA 5, but before we discuss that we need to discuss helicopters...because your going to need one to get that anyway.

Basically the game itself makes it pretty hard to get a helicopter unless you know where to go, what to do, and how to get one. After over 130 hours of game play I have found (and memorized) how to get two different types of helicopters anytime you need.


The image above is the first location.  Directly where the marker is, there is a hospital.  It's easy to find, just find the lowest interstate heading out of the city. Once there, pinpoint it on your map, I have the location memorized.  If you can't find it, then go near the area and die and let it re spawn you at the hospital. Once in the area circle the building until you see a ladder going up. Once up there, you will see another ladder going up. Up on that roof is one of the spaceship parts anyway, but besides that are two helicopter pads. 95% of the time there is a large ambulance chopper for you to steal. Quick, easy, and without raising attention. There was only one situation where the helicopter wasn't there, and I just went down the road and came back, and it re-spawned. Most of the time there are two.

Now to explain how to get the better helicopter. Generally you will first go ahead and get the ambulance chopper explained above (makes it a lot easier to find the next one which also happens to be the best one in the game.


The location listed above is a military base. Fly your other helicopter over it, but out of site until you see a helipad. About 60% of the time a Buzzard will spawn there.  If not, fly down the road, fly back and check again. After checking 3-4 times at the most one should appear, if not be a little patient. So far I have only found armed Buzzards, not sure if unarmed form spawn here. Anyway, by default it's armed with missiles and machine guns.  It is also the smallest helicopter in the game, which is required for some of the under the bridge events. Some of them can't be done with the regular sized helicopters.

Under The Bridge

I am just going to point out a few of the "aggravating ones" to save you some time on trial and error.  First off the two southern bridges at the bottom of the map are hard to trigger. Basically any bridges that are very close to each other are hard to trigger. If you trigger one bridge, then go under another bridge before the completion message for the first one is over, then it glitches on the second. It'll either not give credit, or give credit but not update in your menu. Either way go under each bridge one at a time, nice and steady and make sure to give the message from the completion of each one time to complete before moving under the next.  Go slow and deliberate and count to make sure you get each one you go under.

Also, make sure that your helicopter doesn't touch anything. If it bumps the water, bumps the side of the bridge or anything then it will not normally give you credit. Give it some time to practice and it doesn't take long to get really good at flying the helicopter around.

The size of the helicopter matters a large chopper like the ambulance one, will do most bridges..but there are at least 5 that seem to require the buzzard. Two of them I am thinking of in specifically that were very complicated and I had to have the buzzard to finally get them to trigger. 

Tire Destruction

A little fun thing to do on the side. Get a sniper rifle, hide somewhere really good and blow the tires off of passing vehicles. Just something fun to help pass the time when you don't feel like doing anything else. It also greatly improves your aim by hitting a moving target that is such a small target to hit. Just a way to practice some without having to be in the shooting range.

Sewer Escape

The exactly entry/exit points for the sewer can be seen here: http://gtaforums.com/topic/606124-where-are-the-sewers/  Basically this unlocks after the first big heist.  The sewers are glitched. The cops never chase you into the sewers. So anytime the cops are on you, and you want to shake them, head into the sewers. Just head to the nearest entrance and go straight into the sewers. This is great for long missions where it forces you to trigger the police, and you can't seem to shake that 3 star wanted level for you to be able to complete that mission. Perfect for those, and other situations where you want to get away from the cop.

Get The APP

The most important piece of advice I can give you is GET THE APP. You can find it here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.ccm.gtav&hl=en for the android market. Not sure what to tell you about IOS. Anyway, this app has a checklist breakdown of every single quest, collectible, side event and so forth. Use this app/list as you play the game and check stuff off as you complete it and/or find it. I guarantee it's the easiest way to track yourself to a perfect game and makes keeping up with stuff very easy.

Final

As I put more time into the game and continue playing over time, I will add more stuff to this post as I find new stuff and/or think about new stuff.  I am also willing and able to answer pretty much any questions about GTA 5. So if your stuck, need help, have questions or anything just throw them in the comments and I will answer the best I can.


Thursday, August 22, 2013

Prime World - MOBA - Basic Overview

I have recently started playing a MOBA called "Prime World". It's from an india game development company named Nival.  Overall it's a very good game, if not somewhat buggy. They have releases in Greece, Russia (for almost 2 years), and now an English beta.  The English beta (to this date) is not up to date with the other two versions of the game, but that is being worked on as we speak.

I have been on a binge with this game, ever since downloading it a month or two ago.  I highly prefer this game over League of Legends and DOTA 2, and I have played both of those games as well.  Well, I want to cover a few basic topics in this blog post, to see how it goes. Then later on I will create some more specific blog posts, depending on how well this one works out.

I am going to be writing an intiial blog post here about some of my thoughts on the game, and some other random subject pertaining to the game.  Then perhaps later I will go into some more detail in other blog posts. Most of it will depend on what kind of ideas come to my mind during the time that I am writing this blog post.

Basic Game Details and Mechanics

Prime World is classified as a MOBA.  That is Multiplayer Online Battle Arena. It's in the same category as League of Legends, DOTA 2 and so forth.  The overall structure of all MOBA games is as follows: You pick a hero, and your taken into an open combat area where the battlefield is split up into "lanes".  These lanes are generally called "Top", "Mid" and "Bot", which are top, middle, and bottom respectively.  These lanes are then covered with different things, depending on the game. In Prime World there is a base on one side and a base on the other. Each base consists of a main building, once that building is destroyed the game is over. Near that is the spawn point (where you appear when you resurrect), heal pool, and shop.  Beyond that is the Zuma game (more on this later, and various misc buildings. Then at the entrance of each Lane is a armory, and two towers. Beyond that is a tower a ways down, a second tower on the waters edge, and then a flag directly in the middle of the water.  Then it repeats on the other side for the other faction in the battle.

Overall the flags determine whose faction the current land belongs to.  Native land (your land) is land owned by your faction.  This gives positive affects for several aspects of the game, talents, and so forth.  The towers auto-target enemies, starting with the weaker enemies first. If any hero attacks you near one of your towers, the tower auto-targets on the hero.  Basic idea is to run down the lane and destroy both towers in the lane (capturing flags along the way, until you get to the double towers near the base. Destroy them, and then the armory. This causes more powerful units on your side to get dispersed into that lane from that point forward.  Then you work your way through to their main building.

That's the general idea of the game. Then around the interior areas there is a vast map of connected jungles, with normal enemies spread throughout the jungles in different camps. Players who go through these jungles to level up, and come up out occasionally to heal, are often referred to as junglers.

That about sums up the overall gameplay and game mechanics.

This specific game has a few other mechanics outside of the standard MOBA style gameplay. Outside of battle there is a city builder style simulation game. You have a base of operations (so to speak) and your able to do several things. You can create different types of buildings, upgrade buildings, and perform various other functions with the different types of buildings and so forth. I won't go into a lot of detail on the buildings right now, but perhaps later I will go into further detail.

Within that simulation game, as rewards for battle, and in other ways, players can obtain what are called Talents.  They vary in power and attributes, and they are assigned to different heroes for the purpose of giving them various affects and powering them up.  They are the RPG equivalent of "gear".

The talents come in several different colors to denote their overall power level.

I won't go into any other details on game mechanics in this blog post, since it's only meant to serve as a basic overview of the game. But perhaps I will in a future blog post.

Heroes

The game consists of a total of 62 heroes, split across two different faction.  Most heroes have more than 1 skin at the moment, and more coming on a regular basis.  The heroes (for the most part) have the same move set across factions. Some are unique between Factions.  The names of the different heroes across factions, and the available skins are all that differ for the most part.

I won't go into a lot of details on heroes at the moment, but perhaps in a future blog post.

Overall Thoughts

Overall I think this is a great, and wonderful game. It has a lot of bugs, errors, issues, bad matchmaking, and some other issues...but it is a great game. I liked it a great deal more than most of the big name Moba's. Mostly because of the talent system, city building style system, and the way the heroes are setup. Such care and details were put into each heroes background, base talents, and overall build structure.  Highly recommended for hard core MOBA veterans, or brand new players to the series.

The community itself (currently) leaves a lot to be desired. A lot of people talk a lot of bad stuff about some of the players, even when they are doing nothing wrong. You will generally at least run into one crap talker about 2 in every 5 games, but over time I have noticed the English community growing, evolving, and getting better.  So again highly recommended.