Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Purposefully Hot

I need contrast in my life. Everything is supposed to be relative, but how hot does spicy get?

This is a diced beef curried stew pasta...
Auzzie thingy.

Cut ~8 cloves of garlic with the back of a knife.
Insert into pot
drizzle over the garlic some olive oil. Preferably from a virgins olives.

Open VLC, begin rock and roll. Hawaii Five O by Book him Danno is selected.

Shake that groove thing into a glass.
Groove consists of 1 teaspoon each of:
Ground Ginger
Cardamon, ground
Garam (Masala)
Turmeric, in powder form
Nutmeg, as a dried paste
Flakes of Chillies, so small they may have been made in a mortar and pestle.

Paprika, smoked nor ground.
Keen as mustard
Cajun, also nor ground.

Now the garlic should be changing colour

Toss the spices from the glass into the pot with the boiling oil and coloured garlic.

Stir thoughtfully enjoy the aromas and Enya.

500g of diced cow meat should be placed on top of the aromatic mix. Stir the meat until all its sides are seared and covered in flavor.

Add to this then a jar of pasta sauce with red wine. You could add you own wine, but I don't like to drink alone.Make certain there is enough fluid to cover the meat by adding water.

set to medium heat and stir through.

Add to this a bunch of veggies if required. All meals should have veggies.

Then moving on.

I made pasta as per the instructions on the pasta pack, this was the side dish, or the under dish as it were.

Seems the meal went down a treat, although company always makes food taste better.

Berzerk the Cataclysm: Deck strategy

Mostly I have been getting the standard booster pack, hoping for more mercenary cards. I figure I should get one useful card for every 20,000 that I spend. For me that is usually UR or SR without the assassin trait (or with less than 4 crystals).

Then I built a deck of each type, trying to minimize then number of low level cards. I decided each increment from C < F < R < SR < UR < P is roughly the same, so replacing a common hero with a frequent hero gives roughly the same improvement to the deck as replacing an Ultra Rare with a Promo level card. That said I like fire, rage and vampire and I don’t like formation, direct strike or assassin.

For my castle defense I have a snowball deck, it either wins or loses dramatically. I like to keep 5 or so barbarians and only have 2 people defending. Hopefully this encourages other players to think I am AFK and then they will attack me. Otherwise just waiting for income is rather dull.

For attacking barbarians and defending I like my dark deck. Often my two item cards land next to each other and so thirst is nothing like the debuff that I thought it would be. If I made a third dark deck it would have only C and F cards, so I haven’t used it. When I need a three card deck I go with more mountains.

Mostly though I’d recommend people just bake the best out of the cards they are dealt. My prime dark deck is still better at fighting swamp decks than the one with all the swamp assassins. So aim for leveling up you cards and one day you will have enough to start thinking about strategy rather than sheer power & speed. Or you could build a deck like this for funnies, even though it loses a lot. To this end I’d like a fire only deck because I don’t really know what fire cards do.

Although no matter how much you want a card you only have something like 8 in 300 chance of getting it. I don’t know the exact numbers but of the 600 available cards some you only get as achievements/quests/gift ~10; Some useless cards from the basic booster ~40; Then maybe 250 standard cards and 300 real money cards.

See Also:
Berserk: The Apocalypse
Parting forum post
Berserk: The Cataclysm: Deck strategy
Berserk: The Cataclysm: A reviewF2P: A quick overview and review

Monday, July 30, 2012

Gym: Should I stay or should I go?

What's it matter? I don't know.

Exercise, it seems to me is a sport for the rich. Only in an affluent society would you be able to eat enough food and have enough time to do nothing that you would actually need to exercise for health reasons. In third world countries people spend all day working and then barely have enough food to eat when they go home. So if I were to pay to go to the gym, that would be saying I have so much spare cash that I can both eat more than I need to, work less than all day and still have enough to pay somebody to make me fit. That just feels arrogant.
Maybe I should be doing a more physical type of work and sit at a desk for les hours in the day? But I suppose that would be trading off mental exercise for physical exercise?
So maybe a better way to look at it is that I spend 8 hours a day training my mind to get better at computer games; And then I spend 2 hours a week in a gym training my body to be able to easily ride my bike to work and carry the odd 20kg pail of chemical?

Training should be more strenuous than your regular exercise. And I’m fit if I can do all the things I want to do with relative ease.

I don’t know I still haven’t convinced myself. I remember the last time I had a gym membership I had a goal to complete my DofE and had set several milestones along the way. Once that goal was accomplished every time I went I kept thinking “Why am I inside? Why aren’t I at the beach?” and other similar themes.

Unless I call the gym a social activity… that could work. I’m exercising my emotional self just like when I go dancing (although I seem to count dancing for everything). I’m pretty happy with my physical/mental/spiritual fitness levels but my emotional fitness is a bit harder to gauge.

The gym would also give me something new to recover from, just like those 50k bike rides that I hardly ever do.

Hmm Ok so probably the only barrier is #3 and #9, if the gym can be fun then its probably not a waste of time and therefore would be worth the cash.

Friday, July 27, 2012

F2P: A quick overview and review

What I like: Paying for vanity items or for variety. Give me something bland for free to demo the full game then let me see everybody else using exiting abilities and colorful clothes. Then If I actually like playing the game the vanity items and niche abilities will add more variety to my game. I also like donation games like T.O.M.E. where you give the dev money if you like the game and want there to be more of it.

What I don’t like is having to pay to be able to compete. In Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning. The beta was fun and the first year or so was fun but it got to a point where the uni student I was playing with had so much more spare time than me that they always had the best equipment for that particular level. So they might be reliably twice as effective than me until the endgame where those people were about ten times as effective as me. So in the end the only places I found enjoyable challenges were in PvE and beta servers.

There are also pay to win Freemium games like Berzerk: Cataclysm. Where the more cash you splash the more game there is to play and the easier it is to beat other players. I believe all F2P games try to avoid this label, some more successfully than others.

Pay to not play; League of legends uses this a little. Either you decide you will eventually reach level 30 and eventually grind enough IP to unlock all the champions. Or you buy experience boosts and the collector’s edition. That way a novice can easily play practically all the game with the first week.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Spineless Curry

Spiceless curry for those who don't like their curry spicy. I could call it "My First Curry" I suppose.

1 onion diced
4 cloves of garlic diced
Add to a pot and cook until supple.

Add 500g of diced beef to the pot and cook until it starts to seal

Add spices, a teaspoon or two each of:
Garam Masala

Side note: If you don't know anybody with gluten intolerance, put all these spices in a Tupperware container with the meat and a tablespoon of flour and shake vigorously to coat the meat. This way all the spice stays on the meat.

Mix the spices through the meat for a bit. once it all looks even and is getting cooked..

Add tomatoes, preferable without skin, the skin gets stuck in your teeth and is hot.
I'm adding 800g of diced tomatoes from a tin + some from the garden.

Add also one cup of dessicated coconut. It complements the cardamon nicely and takes the edge off the acidity of the tomatoes.

Make sure this is all a little wet and soupy so that you can get all the burnt bits off the bottom of the saucepan.

Wait for 30min or so for the meat to stew. If its looking really soupy remove the lid.
Use this time to prepare the rice if you are having that as a side.
Then clean up everything else while the rice and curry is cooking.

I've lost my camera so there are no pictures this time :( my phone camera is really dodgee.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Bum Damage

A while back we had a couple of sojourns in the church hall, with no internet or anything. Titan quest was one of the games that saw a bit of action. I’ve forgotten exactly who found it but it defiantly was a legitimate find, This ring really changed the way we played the game. The 100% item requirement reduction meant that the person with the ring had a lot more flexibility. Then just look at all the other bonuses it gives. This ring was the reason I installed the TQ vault. While there was a duplication glitch with the trade that gave us a couple of extras I really didn’t want to lose this find. With two of these rings the rest of normal difficulty was a breeze, but I saw that as a good thing as on normal difficulty you are limited in what abilities can be used and there is much less variety in the game.
 It really looks like we cheated doesn't it :) I'm glad we never lost the item. Joseph called it the Bum damage ring but zooming in on the screenshot I now see it really does say Burn Damage.