Review: Betrayal at Krondor

  • Posted on: July 16, 2009
  • By: Keiya
  • Category:

Betrayal at Krondor is a longstanding PC favorite of mine. It's an older (1993) DOS based PC roleplaying-game, developed by Dynamix and published by Sierra On-Line. The game events occur in the rich and detailed fantasy world of Midkemia, the setting for Raymond E. Feist's Riftwar Cycle. I actually wasn't aware that Betrayal at Krondor was based off of a book series when I had originally played it. If anyone is curious, it takes place approximately halfway between A Darkness at Sethanon and Prince of the Blood (decade after the riftwar).

The game is designed to unfold like an interactive book. It's divided into nine chapters, each beginning and ending with a cut scene consisting of text narration and pseudo-live action animation (fair warning: This game was created in the early 90's, the height of live actor cut scene cheese). Most importantly, Betrayal at Krondor feels like a book: The narration is compelling and well written. Most RPGs present you with a generic selection of character archetypes to play. Not so much here, the characters are well fleshed out, each with a distinct personality, past and history.

TV: Merlin

I don't usually keep track of what's on television anymore (I haven't since graduating High School). Actually, the only channels that I do keep somewhat of a tab on are Discovery and Sci-F...errr SyFy to some extent. So if any other channel has anything worthwhile on, I almost always miss it. But back on topic:

I got a chance to watch some Merlin this weekend, a BBC acquired 13-part series that runs on Sundays during primetime. It's a coming of age story about Merlin, a young man born with some magical talent, the struggles of his youth, all while trying to keep his powers hidden. It strikes me as kind of odd that NBC would air a period drama during prime time. Fantasy series hold a strong nerd stigma in the US and period drams in general seem to be hit or miss, usually miss. But hey, not complaining.

If you are expecting the story to remain true to the tale of King Arthur, you might be somewhat disappointed as the plot seems to be a very liberal interpretation at best. Smallville is to the Superman comics as Merlin is to the King Arthur stories, for better or for worse (think young Merlin and young Arthur + antics).

The production quality is decent as is the acting (good cast), there's plenty of sword play, pretty renaissance-esque costumes to stare at as well as CGI monsters. A little cheesy? Perhaps. Fun? Most definitely. It's well worth watching, especially if you also share a strong fascination for fantasy and medieval period stories. A new summer favorite for Keiya.

Oh, all of the episodes are on the NBC site as well as Hulu.

Paladin Tier-9: Turalyon's

  • Posted on: July 12, 2009
  • By: Keiya
  • Category:
    WoW

MMO-Champion has as preview of most of the Tier-9 sets up, along with set bonuses. Paladin Tier-9 is apparently called Turalyon's Battlegear, Garb and Plate for Retribution, Holy and Protection respectively. I don't know how final any of these are, since they are being pulled off of the test servers.

The new paladin sets kind of remind me of the old school PVP sets minus the tacky yellow color. I like the blue, white and bronze/gold color scheme, it's very regal looking. The helm is also "wearable", unlike Tier-8's weird burka mask. Does anybody actually have the helm graphic on for that item? Many of the tiered sets look nice conceptually, but don't translate very well into the game. Crystalforge for example: Very swank and pretty in the collector's edition artbook, but way too purple and...floaty in the Burning Crusade.

I am also glad that Blizzard is adding different horde and alliance models for Tier-9; Can't have those dirty horde fakadins looking like me. But, if variety is what they are shooting for, why do the Death Knight and Warrior sets use the exact same model? Seriously, exactly the same just recolored. Really Blizzard?

But on the other hand: HAHAHAHAHA horde paladins. I am so sorry that you all are going to look like psychedelic crack shaman. Go go alliance!

WoW Macros + Update

  • Posted on: July 12, 2009
  • By: Keiya
  • Category:
    WoW

Before I babble: I'm not sure if the contact forms on this site or any of my domain emails are functioning properly, I switched them over Google apps and haven't really tested them. Sooo if anyone's email has bounced back within the last week, whoops sorry. Also, yay I tweaked the theme so that it's a little prettier.

I'm majorly slacking on the WoW posts lately. Kind of behind on everything related to patch 3.2. In fact, I haven't even read all of the patch notes or class changes as I am busyish attending to other things. WoW lull period! I am also sadly slacking off on all of the Argent Tournament dailies. I have a total of 50 at the moment QQ, not enough to buy the new mount when 3.2 goes live. I could have totally had a ginormous stack if I had bothered spending a half hour doing them every day. Shame on me!

Our raid was called off last night because half of our guild was unable to login for most of the evening. It turns out that the authentication problems were only affecting people who have not yet converted their account over to battle.net. So if anyone is still having issues, it might be time to do so. I have a feeling that at some point in the future, folks will probably be forced to convert their accounts anways.

I feel compelled to post something useful and have been meaning to update my macro list. So, here is a small list of macros that I use frequently on my paladin. You know, I'm certain that one or two of these were copypasta'd and modified from WoWWiki or something, so apologies...

Linode

  • Posted on: July 10, 2009
  • By: Keiya
  • Category:

Yay finally! This site should be up in full working order, minus a few modules that I need to reinstall and reconfigure (the weblinks module for the blogroll stuff and some admin features that no one other than myself will care about). I've hopped from one shared provider to the next over the course of several years and have never been really very happy with any of them.

Being too lazy to just setup and run a virtual server, I just tolerated it. But lately, between this site, the guild site, guild forums and whatever else I play with on this account, I've outgrown shared hosting. So I finally purchased a VPS account over at Linode and installed Ubuntu 8.04 LTS, Nginx (a faster/lighter alternative to Apache that supposedly is better than Lighty in that it is more stable and doesn't leak as badly), MySQL and PHP.

All is well so far. I'm not really a Linux guru, so if the site implodes: Whoops. I probably shouldn't have played around with that setting...