The Professional Gamer - August 31, 2015

This has certainly been a good week for geeking.  I managed to watch some fun shows with friends, read a little bit of a good book, and play some video games.  If, like me, you have a limited amount of time to spend on your hobbies, you are likely to look for ways to maximize your enjoyment in the time that you have.  And that's what I'm here to do.  Tell you about my week so that maybe you can find something great to do in your own week.

Reading: During my short camping trip last weekend, I read some more of Pretty Guardian: Sailor Moon.  At this point I am well into the "Dead Moon" arc (Super S for fans of the anime),  So far, I think I'm enjoying this arc the most.  I love how each of the Sailor Guardians gets a story confronting their own dreams and doubts.  Although there is some character development earlier in the series, I feel that know is the first time that I am really getting to know all of the Guaradians as people rather than characters.

Also, some of you may have been following the results of the Hugo Awards.  Wired Magazine seems to have a good piece summing up all of what happened with Sad Puppy et al.  I haven't finished reading the entire column myself yet (because when I read about people behaving in overtly sexist/racist/homophobic ways, my blood boils).

Playing: My game playing for the week is either sparse, or intense depending on your opinions about certain types of gaming.  True, I spent a little more than an hour piloting my Space Van™.  It's a fun way to pass time and earn money in Elite: Dangerous, but since I've ditched the shield generator (that's valuable cargo space friend), I've been terrified of any pirate entanglements.  At this point, I've had enough space station entanglements to last a lifetime, and had to pay about 200 credits repair my hull from various bumps and scrapes.

Beyond that, I may have made the mistake of installing Fallout Shelter on my phone.  I tend to view games like this as time wasters.  I could just as easily spend the same amount of time browsing through Twitter or Tumblr, looking at cat pictures, and rage reading about the latest environmental catastrophe or human rights abuse.  But when it comes down to it, Fallout Shelter is fun.  I enjoy finding the sweet spot in expansion rate so that people aren't starving or without electricity or eaten by molerats.

Watching: Two of my friends passed a very important milestone this week when they watched the Steven Universe episode "Jailbreak".  For me, this episode marks a strong change in the tone of the series.  At the end of "Jailbreak", we are no longer in quite the same magical, but largely harmless world.  The Crystal Gems are no longer battling against savage, but not necessarily malefic gem monsters.  They have a nemesis, with the ability to plan and strategize.  Also, "Jailbreak" has the best song in the series.

In my own viewing, I've finished Series 8 of the new Doctor Who.  Since this is a recent release to the world of streaming, I'm going to put up the SPOILERS warning here.  If you haven't seen the entire series, and want to be more surprised at the reveals in the finale, steer clear.  

Now then, there is no doubt in my mind that the last few episodes of this series have been much better than the earlier episodes.  There seemed to be marked improvement in the quality of the writing with "Mummy on the Orient Express" that continued through to the end of the series (yes even with Moffat's work on the two part finale).  "Flatline" was my favorite and felt the most like Doctor Who to me.  I love when the Doctor is confronted with something new, when we as the audience get to experience the joy and terror of a new discovery alongside the Doctor and his companion.  Now, on to the finale.  Please note that my opinions are based primarily on "new" Who and that I am going to use female pronouns when referring to the Master, for simplicity.  I am not really a fan of The Master as a villain, because she tends to fall into the evil because I hate everyone trope.  The Master never seems to be fundamentally convinced of her "rightness".  The most compelling villains believe that they are behaving in the only correct way given the situation they find themselves in.  However, I do think that the Doctor's ace in this case was much better than his last major confrontation with the Master at the end of Series 3.  I feel that "love is more than an emotion" is a better theme than "wishing the Doctor back".  I wish that the show would have explored more about why there are all sorts of robots searching for the "Promised Land" and I find that idea that the Master was responsible for getting the Doctor and Clara together to be silly.  We are allowed to have things just be coincidence from time to time.  Perhaps Clara just got what ought to have been a wrong number for her technical support and ended up talking with the Doctor.  I could go on, but I'll stop myself here.  On balance, I think that Series 8 was better than 7, but it is likely still at the lower end in my rankings so far.

Star Fox Zero Launches in November

It has been many years since since we have had a new Star Fox game. The last new one I played was Star Fox Adventures for the Gamecube, so you can imagine I have been waiting for a new game for quite some time. Sure there was Star Fox 64 3D, but that was not a  new game, just a well done remake. Well then good news for me and people like me then, because November 20th marks the day that Star Fox Zero will be released in Europe and North America for the Wii U. I look forward to doing lots and lots of barrel rolls then!

The Professional Gamer - August 24, 2015

I hope everyone is ready for another week at work (at least for those of us who have landed on the Monday through Friday schedule).  I know that I am.  The weekend was spent backpacking with my buddy.  But, you all came here to read about geeky activities, not about walking around under the Yellow Face.  Read on to find out how I spent my time this week.

Reading: Again, reading has generally taken a backseat to most other activities this week.  While I am away in the woods, I'm planning to read at least another volume of Pretty Guardian: Sailor Moon, but I will leave that discussion until next week.

Playing: I've split my gaming time this week between playing Hyrule Warriors with Crystal and Elite: Dangerous on my own.  In Elite, I just purchased a new ship.  I opted for the Hauler, which many fan have dubbed the space van.  It may not be exciting to fly, but I'm hoping it can make me some cash via trading.

Watching: Doctor Who continues to be the viewing choice at my house.  I recently watch "Mummy on the Orient Express", and I have to say that it is my favorite episode so far this season.  Although the Doctor is still acting like a blowhard, we at least see some reason for it in this episode.  And maybe we understand a bit better why Clara is willing to endure his barbs so that she can participate in the adventures.  The pacing of this episode was also better than the last few have been.  I hope this episode marks a turning point for the season, and that we get some more great episodes out of it.

Farewell for another week.  Keep up with you geekiness, and I will do the same.  Have a great week, and Game On!  

Have you looked at the guest list for Nan Desu Kan recently?  I believe NDK is going to supply us with a good mix of older and newer guests.  From the former column: Lisa Ortiz.  And from the later: Robbie Daymond.  Don't know about the rest of you, but I'm excited for this convention.  

We also have a bunch of friends who will be in Artist's Alley.  You should go check them all out and exchange your monies for delicious comics.

The Frieza Force - Now Recruiting

Are you tired of the so called "good" guys always winning? Do you believe that things can only get done with an iron fist and the threat of planetary destruction? Do you enjoy breathing? Then have I got news for you. The Frieza Force is now recruiting and is stronger then ever. Having returned from the dead our Lord Frieza has become more powerful then ever and will return his iron first rule to the galaxy just as soon as he takes care of a few pesky Saiyans. Join now and you may be able to protect your pathetic planet from being destroyed first. For more information please watch the recruitment video at http://www.friezaforce.com/.

Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection 'F' - Taking it to a New Level

Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection 'F' - Taking it to a New Level

Over the weekend I had the opportunity to see Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection F at the Sie Film Center here in Denver. And it was quite the treat to see! The movie was everything that one could hope for. There was fighting, comedy, and plenty of escalation of powers! It was also nice that they did not over play powering up but still made it a large event. Everything that you could want from a Dragon Ball Z movie.

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The Professional Gamer - August 10, 2015

I have returned from my (brief) summer vacation, and am back to the ordinary world of work and geek.  But, I enjoyed my camping trip / tech sabbatical.  Several days without the ability to use my phone (at least without standing in some very specific locations) was a great break from normal life.  Now that I'm back, how have I spent my time?  Mostly planted in front of the TV, cause Denver is way too hot!

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