A New Look – Feedback Requested

Welcome to the new design of the blog! I was starting to find the last design was really grating on me – and frankly, it was quite messy. There was too much information I didn’t care about putting out there – not enough room for the information I wanted to convey – and the whole layout just wasn’t really viable for a gaming blog.

So this is the new layout! I’ve gone for a sleeker, cleaner look to try and reduce the amount of stuff on any given page at any given time. And while I’m not 100% sold on the giant banner at the top of the page, I think this is a great new visual direction for EDGamer.  Continue reading “A New Look – Feedback Requested”

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Future posts/need to post SOMETHING

It’s really tough to write about video games, when you’re spending a lot of your time not playing video games.

So instead, I’m going to write a post about the stuff I want to do.

Like I’ve mentioned before, having a full time job and a full time girlfriend is a real killer for anyone whose only previous goal in life was to play as many video games as possible, and so, playing anything other than the most rudimentary snatches of Hearthstone or Pokemon on my DS has become the norm. Instead of a real update, here’s a list of the stuff I am working on, along with the stuff that I really want to get on top of.

Why? Beats posting nothing, I guess.


One game I have gotten a chance to play is Audiosurf. Being one of my favourite games of all time, I found it a little odd that I only have one video on my channel that’s purely about this game. So I figured I’d make a top ten video detailing my favourite songs to ‘surf. And why not? Top ten videos are one of the more popular formats on YouTube, and Audiosurf is a subject I can talk about without it feeling too forced; certainly a problem when dealing with a format as trite as top tens.

Such a token image. Just so I have one.

So that video is currently in development – I’ve shot 90% of the footage I need, and I’ve written 90% of a script for each song on the list. Why only 90%? Because I, er, forgot one song when I was recording all the footage. But that’s no bother, and I should hopefully be able to get that done tonight.

Which means I then have to get around to recording my narration. And that’s always been a problem for me. Like everyone else in the world, with the probable exception of Kanye West, I hate the sound of my own voice. Or at least, I hate the sound of it when it doesn’t sound natural. And getting your voice to sound natural when you’re reading lines off a script is not just hard, it’s almost goddamn impossible without training. You can do it with practice, but… I haven’t really had that practice. So I keep getting “performance voice”. Oh yeah, you know the one. It always sounds too forced, and too fake. It probably doesn’t sound like that to anyone else – but to you, it totally does. The same way you can never enjoy something you’ve created because you’re constantly re-editing it as you watch, or seeing parts you should have done differently, I can’t listen to my voice in that context without getting weirded out. And that’s a major barrier to overcome.

But isn’t that what having hobbies is at least partly about? To improve something you love. And goddamn it, I do love myself.

I also have other ideas for more informal videos. I want to do a “Should You Play” on Thief, but I just haven’t played enough of the game to feel like I can really comment yet – plus the bit I did play was months ago now. Perhaps I picked a bad game to critique because I’m not really enjoying it as much as I feel I should be. Which is a shame, because I feel like the game has a lot to offer. Like, a lot. If you like games like that, you’ll probably enjoy Thief.

I also want to shake up that particular format a little. It’s nothing too major, I’m keeping that under my hat for the moment.

Writing is, in some ways, more difficult than the YouTube videos. Whereas I’m simply pressed for time on the videos, writing can be done in small chunks, and I’m just having more difficulty drumming up the enthusiasm to do it. I don’t dislike writing – not at all – it’s that my job saps an awful lot of creative energy, and it’s hard to sustain the energy needed during my lunch break, or when I get home.

I really want to write about easy mode, and how much I enjoy playing on it. But the words just aren’t coming. I guess it’s always best not force these things, so perhaps I can take that as a sign that it’s not meant to be.

Nah, fuck that. I’ll write that bastard.

So what’s the real point of this post? Mostly to prove to myself that I am still capable of creativity, and that progress is incoming, just at a snail’s pace. My YouTube channel and my blog might have suffered as a result of this new job, but I’m confident that I can balance the time out eventually. I just have to keep on trying.

Oh, and I did get an online portfolio for my writings up. So that’s a thing that I did. Go check out some of the stuff I did, especially if you’re interested in seeing a couple of the blog posts I did in a professional role.

But that’s all from me now. I doubt I’ll get this out this lunch break – I’ll leave it up to Future Mark to edit this down and get all the links in the right places, and the italics on game names… you know, the grunt work. But that’s okay, because Future Mark is a bastard and deserves all he gets.

Toodles!

Why Uni Kinda Sucks

Good lord, it’s been a long time. This isn’t a Blogcritics post, and lord knows I could put a couple of those up. But hey, this doesn’t really have a point, and Blogcritics isn’t the best place in the world anyway. But it’s a good way to get publicity, and publicity is a good thing to have kids.

This week on childrens hour, indeed.

So yes, it HAS been a long time. And I’m not gonna apologise, because university has kept me busy with a fuckton of work. ED news went slightly under simply because I got buried with assignments and reading that needed doing. Dear god, it’s been one hell of a time that I have been having.

But since I last posted, a lot of things have happened. Skyrim happened, for one thing. And then Skyrim went away, and I started playing Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood again. Yes, I haven’t bought Revelations yet, but to you I say ‘fuck you!’. You don’t have the Student Loans company fucking up how much money you’re supposed to have. But once I do, you fuckers will pay–

*Ahem*.

Where was I?

Oh yes, game heaven. Skyrim was something else. I still am disappointed by some of the things that they sacrificed, but I’m sure that those whiny posts have been covered by other, more popular blogs. And I’ll probably have a post up about it sooner or later anyway. I’ll try not to be too whiny, I promise. Probably something about magic, and how it needs to have more oomph.

That isn’t what this post is about though. This post is a general post that needs to be made when I’m slightly tipsy and my girlfriend is playing Minecraft on my PC.

And I’m out of things to say, for now.

Laters!

If you don’t have– oh, who am I kidding? You already have Skyrim.

Been a long time, been a long time

Been a long, lonely lonely lonely lonely tiiiiiime!

It’s been a while, blog-readers! Since I’ve been away, I’ve gotten a job (writing news articles for Latest Choice – look! You can see my articles on the front page, look! I’m famous!) and started a new blog site.

Since I was doing news for pay, I found that I was really enjoying writing short and informative news articles. So I decided to start a new blog to report my own games news – stuff that I’m interested in. Sure, it’s mostly mainstream games stuff, but it’s a lot less formal than the stuff I write in my job, and it allows me to really go to town with my opinions and gives a way to write when I don’t really want to write such long posts as I do on this site. And that was the problem with this blog; I don’t always want to do such long posts.

But I’m not abandoning this blog – oh no, not at all! For one thing, I still have almost a year left on this domain name. But I will be spending a lot of time over at my new(s) blog; which you can find over at Blogspot. I aim to make the updating on that site daily with new articles, about hopefully different games.

Hopefully I’ll be able to update this blog more often, but finding something to write about, and the muse to continue writing the post, has proven quite difficult recently.

Oh, and I have a Technorati profile now. The ED News is doing well, but sadly this site really needs to be updated before it can keep rising.

Coming soon: Deus Ex: Human Revolution.

My Craft

About a week ago, I decided I was trying to play too many games at once.

I was running two accounts on EvE, getting to level 80 on WoW, trying the open beta of Final Fantasy XIV and playing nightly bouts of Team Fortress 2. It might not sound like a lot, but playing three MMOs, and trying to make decent progress in all three can be quite wearing.

So I decided to add another game to the pile. What harm could it do, eh?

I’d been after buying Minecraft for a while. I had first played it a few months back, around the Easter hols. The lovely people over at PC Gamer had pointed me in that direction, and ever-loyal dog that I was, I happily padded to it, wagging my tail all the way. Ten minutes later, I had convinced friends to try, and we spent a few happy hours constructing useless things, trying to reach the top of the map, getting lost in the huge levels, and removing blocks from under peoples feet so they fell to the bottom. We built a giant wall and write our names on it. One guy stayed up until 4am finishing it off. Much fun was had by all.

And the next day, we forgot about it and never really bothered to go back on it.

In the months in-between, I was aware of a certain quiet busyness coming from that quiet corner of the web. Again, PC Gamer kept me updated and I slowly began to feel interested in the game again. I heard of a survival mode, where the objective was to build a house during the day, and fend off hordes of ravening zombies at night. I heard of a multiplayer version of this. I heard that it was only available to those people who bought the game.

Starved for cash, as any student is (especially one with such a thirst for MMOs), I scornfully threw it aside.

Later, I returned to the site at looked deeper. I found that it would be cheaper to buy now than at release, not to mention that I would get everything released for it in the future for free. Vague movements began to start from my trousers – my wallet, of course – and I began to seriously think about buying a game in the alpha stages that looked like it was from the wrong end of the nineties.

Truly beautiful graphics

And being so easily distracted, I bought it. I knew I had many other games to play, including the limited time open beta for FFXIV, but I didn’t care. I wanted to play Minecraft, and I thought it’d be a game that filled small gaps between MMOs.

How wrong I was. I played a few hours on my first sitting, and it only got worse from there. The first day was spent just exploring, wondering when the zombies turned up. The preceding night was spent running from said zombies, and dying to the skeletons with unexplainable crossbows. You learn to weave in Minecraft. After that I learned about Creepers – creepy green penis-looking things that explode if you stay close to them for too long. Jewish psychologist, much? Oh, and lets not forget the spiders that are the fastest fucking things in the world. Apparently, you can come across skeletons riding the evil hell-spawned arachnids, but I haven’t had the misfortune to come across them. Yet.

My first night complete, I set to constructing my legacy! Armed with nothing more than my fists, I started digging into the earth, gaining many bricks of dirt in the process. Oddly, even though I found stone, I couldn’t seem to gain any blocks of stone to build with. After some confused Googling, I came across the Minecraft community wiki, Minepedia. If you’re looking towards getting Minecraft, bookmark that page. It is invaluable. The crafting system is simple, but unintuitive. But once you have the trick of it, you’ll wonder how you couldn’t figure it out to begin with.

Bravely hiding in my house. Scary buggers out there!

So, wooden pickaxe in hand – not gonna bore you with the details of how I made it, or why (read the wiki page, you lazy bums) – I set about constructing my first building. One problem; wooden pickaxes don’t last very long, so I was back before long, looking for materials to make a new one. Now armed with several, I went back to my mine, now a comfortable distance underground. Ten minutes later, I returned with a few stacks of stone and a plan. Unfortunately, the sun had set and an opportunistic zombie who couldn’t believe his luck got to bite my head off. But no problem! I respawned a few feet away and got to reclaim my booty before outrunning the poor decomposing soul. I spent that night running around, dodging arrows, spiders, and the occasional explosion before the sun rose (sunlight kills zombies and skeletons, and makes spiders non-aggressive). With the sun fully up, I could begin my construction. A two stone high wall was all that was needed to keep the beasties out, and a fetching wooden door sealed my entrance. A glass roof constructed from heated sand finished the job, and I basked in the glow of a job well done. I had survived my first few nights (sort of), and constructed my house all on my own (sort of).

I had some stone left over.

So I decided to build a statue of myself as a tribute to the great builder that I obviously was.

Of course, the next day, I was working on it, and a Creeper got close enough to blow me up and half of my statue. And then another got the side of my house.

So I made a sword. Some bitches needed telling whose land this was.

“Get orf moi land!”

Minecraft is available now for the low low price of €9.95, (or about £8 or $11) from the website. Don’t forget, it’s 50% off during alpha, so although you’ll have to live with the various bugs and glitches, you’ll get it for cheaper than when it finally gets released. Happy mining!