PAX PRIME 2012

Hooray! It’s that time of year again! According to the PAX countdown, we have 1 day 18 hours and 32 mins until PAX begins. My insides are about to explode all over the place, I’m that excited. The energy surrounding downtown Seattle and the Washington State Convention center during the con is made of magic.

PAX is a major highlight of my summer and seeing as I’m all nostalgic, I want to share some of my favorite snapshots from PAX PRIME 2011:

I can’t wait to spend all weekend surrounded by my favorite things. My goal is to make this year’s PAX the best one yet. Experience, connect, laugh, share. It’s gonna happen.

My friend Collin wrote a great PAX Prime 2012 Guide that you must check out. I reiterate the prevention of Nerd Flu and searching for food places outside of the convention center. The linked guide suggests really great places to grab a bite to eat.

I plan to absorb the show floor as much as possible. I’ll go to all the Penny Arcade panels (Make-a-Strip, Q&A, etc.) and spend lots of time in the Bioware Base. I’ll for sure be at the Hawken party on Friday night and Zombie Studios party Saturday night. What’s your plan?? See you there.

Game on.

-amy

An Update/Video Game Character Inspired Fashion

Hey, Internet! I’ve recently started my senior year of college; so close to the end…yet so far. I’ve decided to keep going straight through summer quarter to speed up the process. I’ve mentioned before that I returned to college to finish my final two years after several years off. I want to get back to my regular lifestyle. Not to say I haven’t been enjoying my break from various “adult” things. I do have crazy-person outbursts sometimes from the workload. I’m just anxious to focus on my future career.

No matter, on to the fun stuff. I still do find things in my free time that I must share ASAP. Thanks to the fantastic Felicia Day and her perfect version of vlogging, The Flog on Geek and Sundry introduced me to an amazing Tumblr called Console to Closet. Simply, it is a collection of video game character inspired fashion, both for the ladies and the dudes. I’m kind of obsessed with it. My first favorite I came across is inspired by Subject Zero aka Jack from Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3.

It. Is. Perfect. Above image will take you to Console to Closet, which also provides an reference image of Jack from Mass Effect.

I’m also really loving the looks inspired by Leliana from Dragon Age, Garrus from Mass Effect and Night Elf from my current gaming obsession, World of Warcraft. I love how Amanda, creator of the blog, hasn’t made any of the looks too costume-y. Before that sounds like I hate costuming, I don’t at all! I actually have a secret desire to get in to some serious cosplay. I just appreciate the alternative approach to emulating a favorite game character.

Be sure to check out Console to Closet! It is already inspiring my fashion choices and is lots of fun to browse.

Turns out college is tough

I survived Winter quarter and I have art projects to show for it! Let’s just say this past quarter was quite the challenge. If it doesn’t hurt, it’s not working. Or something.

I took an advanced art studio course titled Image and Imagination. My instructor Ted Heibert, a talented, established artist himself, assigned projects and readings [for an idea: Baudrillard and Viirilio] that chewed up my brain, spit it out and then told me to MAKE ART. I’ve never simultaneously detested and appreciated an assignment before. New feelings.

I’ve been following Meagan-Marie’s Game Industry Advice by tailoring each school project around gaming in some way. My concept was to challenge, question and observe the blur between reality and game worlds using World of Warcraft as my interface. Below is what I managed to produce after hours of learning how to tinker with Photoshop:

I really like how some of them turned out; others I have a hard time looking at. I realize they aren’t technically perfect either [exposure, alignment]. Overall, I believe the project was a success.

Does anyone else ever experience a game world bleeding in to the real world? Do you ever catch yourself seeing a part of a game in reality? This happened to me a lot while playing Fallout 3; every piece of junk I saw IRL started to seem usable, each with their own value and stats popping in to my brain.

Stay in school kids.

Cheers!

TRAILER: Mass Effect 3

This is no secret; I am an avid Mass Effect fan [a video games series developed by Bioware] More specifically, I’m a die hard FemShep [female version of protagonist Commander Shepard] player, fan, supporter, believer. It’s safe to say I do not stand alone. FemShep has an enormous fan base.

There has been no marketing geared towards FemShep–until now. Bioware has caught on to the popularity of FemShep and the fan demand to recognize her as the protagonist. In response, Bioware has included FemShep as a major part of the marketing campaign leading up to the release of the series third installment on March 6, 2012.

I’m not some BroShep/MaleShep/ManShep hater. I definitively get that he is some people’s Commander and he is badass in his own way. However, he isn’t everyone’s Shepard and I am so thankful Bioware isn’t acting like he is any longer.

While watching the trailer, I did in fact shed tears. It’s hard to explain if you aren’t invested. But I’m finally seeing a trailer for the series I’ve spent hours playing over the last five years.

As far as marketing and promotion, Bioware is genius to embrace their female protagonist.  It says a lot about how much they listen to and respect their fans. It would have been great if she had shared the spotlight all along, but I’m happy she’s getting her time now.

I am so happy to share the first official trailer featuring my version of Commander Shepard:

Consider yourself reinstated.

-Amy

The Goods: Art, Videos, Comics–Oh My!

Friday is my I’m-not-gonna-do-anything-but-be-on-the-internets day. Or this [EDIT: Um, I just realized THIS version of 'Lazy Song' existed. FTW] Result: I find things. Sharing is caring!

image via myjusticecake.tumblr.com

It’s Anders! And Sir Pounce A Lot! Even though I crush a lot on DA:O Alistair, Anders has the bad boy thing going on.  This amazing Dragon Age action figure was made by myjusticecake. Check out the link for more images [via myjusticecake]

Like Star Wars? Minecraft? This is their baby [via Kotaku]

Skyrim. As a cartoon. I want this to be REAL [via HarryPartridge YouTube Channel]

image via archaia.com

I may have had a geek spasm when I read this. Free Archaia Mouse Guard/Labyrinth hardcover for Free Comic Book Day 2012?!?! Arcane Comics better watch out, I’ll be there bright and early for this one. Check out the press release on Archaia for all the details [via geekwithcurves]

Skyrim FTW!

So guess what? I’m still playing Skyrim. A lot. Shocker. I don’t think I’ve advanced the main story at all since my last Skyrim post, though. I’ve been doing other important things! Like…scouring the world for Nirnroot so some chick in Riften will get off my case about her experiments…and making Apple-Cabbage Soup for my journeys….yeah.

My boyfriend and I are playing simultaneously and he is just as trapped in the word as I am. We are gearing up to do some geeky shit like write some Skyrim fanfiction! If that doesn’t expose who I really am..

Just me and Lids, trekkin' through the forest.

I still have Lydia! I’ve worked really hard at keeping her alive. Girlfriend gets in the way sometimes though! This guys Lydia wasn’t so lucky…makes me sad. I feel his pain.

OH GODS, DRAGON!

The scene at Dawnstar.

The last two times I’ve arrived at Dawnstar, dragons have appeared. I just slay, and everyone stands around like “ZOMG, a dragon”

You're so dead right now.

Docks at Dawnstar.

I love Dawnstar for some reason. It’s remote, no one really goes there, and I’m a hero cause of all the dragons I’ve destroyed here. I’ve mentioned this before, but I love snowy, arctic settings. Does something for me, I tell ya. I finally got in good with the Jarl here, so I basically own this shit now.

Night Sky.

Sigh. This game, right?? It’s a bit out of control with how expansive it is. And I love that. I do have issues with it at times. Like how I can’t seem to keep a horse alive. That’s the games fault, dammit! The horse mechanics are lame. Oh and the hair for everybody is so bad. It kind of looks like something peed on your head and it dried and that’s it. Once I finish the game (ha) I will attempt a fair review, including the good and bad. Until then…SKYRIM.

SKYRIM: A Photographic Tour

Maybe you’ve heard the word, but as of 11-11-11 Bethesda’s Skyrim has arrived. Epic date. Epic game. I’ve played about 31 hours so far and there isn’t so much as a faint glimmer of the end in sight, which makes me all warm and fuzzy feeling. Skyrim will destroy my Fallout 3 play time of 112 hours total. Here are my first thoughts and impressions of the game thus far. Once I’ve logged more game time, I will write a more comprehensive review.

Checking out the view outside of the City of Whiterun

People; this game is breathtaking. I’m playing the PC version, which offers such better quality than my Xbox. And non existent load times. It’s the first RPG I’ve played on the PC, and I’ve been missing out.

After about an hour creating my character (seriously) I settled on a Female Nord. I relate to the tall/fair and resistance to cold sounded like a good perk. I’ve been focusing on improving my one handed weapons while duel wielding, improving my light armor, and for the first time I’m actually sneak attacking with a bow. I usually don’t have the patience to sneak and wait, but I can’t just rush in and gouge people. I will die.

Alex (Female Nord) with her girl Lydia and the City of Whiterun on the background

Lydia. Oh, sweet Lydia. It started out as a love/hate thing. Now it’s mostly pure love. I like adventuring alone, but as soon as I was given Lydia as my housecarl, I’ve realized I couldn’t do it without her. Yeah, at first she was whinny and was always in my way. She still kind of is. But now she carries my burdens and keeps me company. And saves my ass when I need it most. I will not let her die, ever. I will reload and replay if it means keeping her alive.

View of the moon from inside Whiterun

Everyone comments on how sick/ill I look, or asks if I’m feeling okay. I didn’t pay attention at first, I figured it was because I looked dirty or something? Or because my armor was grungy? But once everyone started mentioning it, I knew it had to be a sort of warning. I figured out how to use a temple shrine, and it told me all diseases had been removed. From what I’ve read online thus far, I think if you don’t cure yourself bad things will happen. I don’t want bad things.

Snow and High Hrothgar

I have this thing for arctic settings. So the snowy mountains, and blizzard conditions in Skyrim excite me. But, what’s with the Frost Trolls being WAY harder than the dragons?? I’m sure it won’t stay that way, but so far I’ve died fighting trolls but not dragons. Oh, and WTF with the giants and their mammoths? Seriously, I’m obsessed with befriending them because they are so badass looking and have pet mammoths. But so far I’ve been on the other end of their one shot kills and my dead body has gone flying 5,000 miles up.

So far I’ve really just been walking around, chasing butterflies and picking wild flowers. Sounds crazy. I’ve discovered caves with vampires, hundreds of bandits on the road, been jumped one time, and fought and killed 5 dragons. Dragon’s just randomly fly around like birds and you fight them. My boyfriend and I are both playing the game, and we both yell “DRAGON! DRAGONDRAGONDRAGON!” and battles begin. I’ve stolen goods, crafted armor, created potions, even done some enchantments. Made a few friends, made some enimies too. I’ve owned two horses who have both gone missing or died fighting. Horses are awesome, but I can’t seem to keep them alive. I’m going to keep trying though! Oh, I even had a drunken night that took me on a crazy adventure all across the world. I’m not even sure of the full story other than dragon’s have been reawakened, I am dragonborn and I can take them down and suck their dragon soul to make myself more powerful. Any more awesomeness on top of that is just icing on a delicious RPG cake.

Here are some more shots from my travels so far:

Alex and her horse, who lasted long enough for this picture

Fight stance and the Aurora Borealis

Night sky while traveling

Sun set outside of Whiterun

See?? Gorgeous, massive, epic. A place I want to live.

I know others are playing. How’s it going for you guys? Anything I need to check out? Tips? Suggestions? Let me know.

Stay tuned for more Skyrim gushing.