Monday, 30 April 2012

D&D: Don't Hate The Player

So, my friends and I have regular sessions of Dungeons and Dragons, once every Friday, we meet up and talk about our week while we set up the game mat and sort out the dice we'll be needing. Now, what should happen here is a short recap on the previous games events, but recently (mainly because of the release of certain new games), we've become increasingly distracted before playing, now I'm not saying this is a bad thing, but we don't really give the game the attention it deserves.

For those of you who don't know what I'm talking about, Dungeons and Dragons is a role-playing game, which, when you're paying close attention, can keep you and your friends occupied for hours, and thinking about how to escape that trap you fell into last session, or how you took the advice of a certain wizard, let's call him Randalf, who crit-failed his Intelligence check on the secret Dwarven riddle door, it isn't enough that he found it, but he has to be the one to solve it? Anyway, after hours of Bluffing his way through "Yeah, no, Dude, I got this. This riddle ain't no thing" The halfling walks up to him and rolls a 15, just making the cut, but still slightly worried about talking to the man twice his size who could shine a light at him "Hey, I think it's... um... friend? Take it or leave it, just saying, man" (but if you ever asked Randalf, he let the Hobbit figure out the answer to make him feel part of the group.)

History is written by the Wizard.

What I'm trying to say is that, once you get into a story, it's very hard to break free. I didn't mean to write all that, but I got side-tracked while writing and it kind of just happened.

I got into DnD in my second week of high school, when I had just turned 12, and, for me at least, it was one of the greatest things that could have happened, I was reading those rule books for days on end, and because I was new to the school, the group itself was comprised of people I had never met before, some of whom I'm still friends with almost 8 years later (I know it doesn't seem a long time, but I've lost a lot of friends since then and keeping the DnD group together, after several permutations, has been a great achievement).

Characters come and go but The Group stays together.

I've played many characters over the years, even DM-ed my fair share of games, and it's still not enough to satisfy my Experience point cravings. I have spent more time designing characters for this game than I have most other things in life (I mean, if I had spent that much time on my work in school, I would have had my GCSEs in year 8 just from sheer boredom)

I love playing this game, not just for the fact that you can pretend for hours that you can cast spells like magic missile and acid arrow at random villagers, for the simple reason of "Just 'Cuz." Neutral Evil right? But that's the idea, you can do things that you can't in real life, you could wake up one morning and announce, "Today, I shall fly a Dragon!" and you could, all you have to do is find your personal set of lucky dice and your character sheet.

I want you, Yes You, Reader, to find a DM, make him, don't ask, Make Him, design an adventure for you  and some friends, experience the feeling of that first level up, and the first time you kill those pesky goblin bandits who are raiding the caravan with untold riches.

So, grab your dice, print out a quickie character sheet, design that character, and save those Villagers from that Dragon who lives in that Dungeon.

10th Level Blog Writer

Oh! By the way, don't forget to comment on our posts, and tell your friends about us. Stay tuned, more posts coming soon!

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Best. Conversation. Ever.

I was having a conversation with a friend I hadn't talked to in a very long time, and part way through she mentioned to me that she now plays Dungeons and Dragons. While I knew that she some had interest in video games, she never seemed to me to be the type to play DnD. Because, in the area where I live, there are two groups that I know of who play DnD and I'm in one of them (for the most part).

Just for the simple fact that I'm writing about it you should know that by this point I already had a new found affection for my Nerdy friend, and after a while she went on to say that she had almost slept through an exam because she was up late the night before, playing Batman: Arkham City. Now, I have to say that at this point this was already one of the better conversations I have had with a girl (regarding games at least) until her last comments about Arkham City pushed it over the top. It seems that it's not only guys who feel that Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy's new looks are well designed.

That's all I have to say about that.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Miracle of Sound: A Gamers Virtuoso

Hey Guys, Cam here and I want to talk music...... well music about video games. Ever played a game that was so epic that there should be a song about it, or a game character who you felt deserved some badass theme music as you were awesoming around with them? Then look no further than the incredible 'Miracle Of Sound'. I first heard a 'Miracle of Sound' song about three months ago, and the music captured what I love about my favourite video games so well, I bought his album straight away. I wasn't disappointed.

I put a video of his awesome, 'Commander Shepard' song, in my blog entry about the ending of Mass Effect 3. I'm gonna link in some more videos of his at the bottom of this post. Guys if you love video games, you will love this guys music, go to his YouTube page and show him some love. What do you guys think? Comment below let us now and please follow us my fellow nerdmigos.

Cam Out.

Indecision, Thy name is Nerd

Okay, my second official post on this blog should be something important, enigmatic, right?It's been an hour or two, and I've been scratching my head, thinking about how to start something that would interest someone out there, but I couldn't really think of anything, I mean, I could write a few paragraphs on how I only just started watching Firefly yesterday (I know, bad Nerd) but I kept thinking, there had to be something more important to write about.

I was right! In a fortunate turn of events I actually found something to write about which connects to the theme of the title.

I’m going to go ahead and guess that you’ve all heard the well-known phrase "when two grown-ups love each other very much..." well, it's much the same for Nerds, except when two Nerds love each other very much it’s not as sudden. There are always seems to be a lot of equations and variables to be considered before asking the inevitable, if slightly awkward, question. Having been in a Nerd relationship (me being the Nerd) I know the inherent issues that all Nerds feel. I have spent most of my “social life” in front of the computer and games consoles, and this is why I don’t really have much success in social situations.

So a friend of mine, who shall remain unnamed, has been thinking of how to ask a girl out, one of his friends no less. He too, is a Nerd, and it seems to me that the FNGs (Fucking Noob Guy) of the world have it so much easier. I think that because of certain TV shows, Nerds have a much tougher time than someone who is “physically beautiful”. In a world where a high Str or Cha score is considered much more important to a relationship than Int or Wis, how can a Nerd expect to find anyone but a fellow Nerd? Of course, there will always be a select few who actually favour personality over looks, but finding even one person like that is like finding a FNG in Games Workshop, it's difficult, and it’s so surprising that when you see them you have no idea how to proceed. For instance, a month or two ago, when I was told that a girl I knew and hung out with actually liked me, I couldn’t believe it. The idea was alien to me, that a girl would consider hanging out with me even after I told her of my interest in Dungeons and Dragons and video games. I think she may have been a stealth Nerd. By day they have normal jobs, normal friends and social lives, but as Sol slowly sets, they break out the Doctor Who DVDs and paint their newly built Warhammer figures, video calling her Nerd friends on the best methods to paint plastic figures.

I've had this post on hold for a while. It's been about a week since I wrote anything for it. I wanted to write about my friends Success asking his friend out. Since I wrote about my experience with stealth Nerds, my friend has secured a day out at the cinemas! The moral of the story? Ask and you shall receive.

Happy Nerding!

Sunday, 22 April 2012

A Choice: Your Favorite Supporting Character

Hey there people, I was debating with a friend today (no self gratitude jokes) over who is the best character in Video game history.... barring main characters. So not Master Chief, not Gordon Freeman, Not Desmond from Assassins Creed (a joke OK .... just a joke), but those awesome characters who are with/against in a game and end up making you just want to be them. I know my choice was easy for me because...
Come on now, is there anyone better.

But then there's awesome characters like Wheatley and GLADOS from Portal 2. Rusty from LA NOIRE. Sergeant Johnson from the Halo Series and Emile from Reach. However these are just at the top of my head and although i could real off 20 names from Mass Effect games (please don't act surprised), what i want to know is what are your guys favorite non-main protagonist character, comment below and let me know, there shall be a video on the horizon from the answers, and you can vote Garrus too... you know you want to.

Thank you for reading, please follow, link us, let people know about us, that would be Awesome.


The Nation is Expanding

Because not that many people are able to find our blog right now, we have started a Facebook page, Google+ account, and even a Wizards of the Coast forum account. We are hoping that branching out into these Nerd hangouts will result in higher page views. If you see us online anywhere, don't hesitate to add us and share our name with your friends.

Also, I know that as we have many posts regarding Mass Effect, and more in the pipeline from writers who are due to post soon, it does seem that we are Shepard fanboys, but rest assured that we are going to write about other topics as soon as we can think of something to write about. But in the meantime, I hope you enjoy reading what we have so far, and comment on our posts, tell us what you think of the blog.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Bioware: Why you no Indoctrinated? (Minor spoilers)

My favorite game series of all time has to be the Mass Effect trilogy, apart from issues with Mass Effect one (another blog for another time) and back in march they released the alleged final much awaited game of the series.

Now, I don't know about you guys but I was pumped, it was all me and my friends would talk about. I was late on the 'how awesome is mass effect' bandwagon, but two to that point was my favorite game i had ever played and the end set it up the third perfectly, we knew that the reapers (if you don't who they are, come on now play Mass Effect) were going come in full force and are going to try to cleanse the galaxy of organic life and it was up to one man to stop them Commander Shepard, cue awesome music.

Now, the story of three is of desperation, of heartache, of suffering and of the brightest hope in the galaxy, Commander Shepard. This game seriously accesses all of your emotions you will laugh, feel despair, be jubilant and cry....... yes i cried, i'm not a wimp, it's sad!

After all of you trials and tribulations comes the ending of the game. I couldn't wait to see what happens, you make choices throughout the whole series that have drastic impacts of the whole galaxy (Genophage anyone?) and couldn't wait to see how my choices effected how the game concludes. The developer Bioware stated that the game had sixteen different endings, OK i expected more due to how many world changing decisions there are, but still SIXTEEN endings!! I was psyched.


And then came the ending. WHY! WHY! WHHHHYYYYY!!!!! I won't go into details on how it ends, but most avid fans of the series would agree that when they played, thought it sucked. Also not sixteen endings the same ending no matter what you choose with variation of colour differences that are different. Even the best ending seemed to be crappy (the breath?) . I like a lot fans felt a little distressed and sickened by something that we as fans we invested time, money and emotion into this universe and they end it that badly. I would of taken the Dallas 'Bobby Ewing gets out of the shower and reassures us the ending was all just a dream.

Then a saving grace, 'The Indoctrination theory'. Turning what would have been the worst ending to an amazing story ever, into one of the greatest endings that we never saw. Please watch this incredible video by Youtuber ACAVYOS explaining the theory. The realisiation of all the pieces falling in place hits you like a lightning bolt of hope, making you think this could be one of the best plot points in gaming.

Combine these theories with tweets from the mass effect twitter page like:
“Hardest. Day. Ever. Seriously,
if you people knew all the stuff we are planning you’d, well – you'd hold onto your copy of me3 forever.”
-Michael Gamble's Twitter Account

This sort of post makes believe that the indoctrination theory is correct and seeing these makes me hopeful, however recent news from Bioware and EA states that the ending remains, it just becomes further explained....Bullcrap, why go into further detail into the things we dislike?

If it's not the ending, then fans who subscribe to the theory will be furious that Bioware refuses to see how terrible are the original ending is, on it's own. Even if the indoctrination theory is correct, isn't it sad that Bioware did this, probably to make DLC money. If it was included in the game from the beginning as the true ending, i would have bowed at Bioware and Casey Lynch (Developer of the Mass Effect series) feet and said "I will buy all of your games as you have created the best video game series with the best possible ending", but i can't and it hurts that i can't.

I believe in Indoctrination..... I believe in Shepard.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

My First Post: The beginning, a nerds quest

Hey fellow nerdonians Cam here. Me and my good friend Oli about half a year back started thinking about putting together a site, to include gaming, comics, TV& film based content, which could be short films, machinima web comics and a whole mess of stuff that appeal to the inner nerd in us, as we all have that side within us, it's just the extent of this that varies (level 15 nerd, but i do have a full paragon bar).

We hope this is the first step to this site which we are creating. The site is in it's 'pre-production' phase at  the moment and we hope to provide some good, funny content on here until we sort out the logistics of the site.

You can expect a whole variety of gaming related blogs, being the two video gaming fanboys we are, we will talk on subject ranging from who are the best crew members in the mass effect series (Garrus, Legion and Thane obviously) to why EA hates gamers (allegedly, cause let's not get sued here).

Thank you for baring through this slightly expositional beginning to my blogging, it gets funnier from hear i swear.

When I was a 1st Level Nerd...

I was watching an old TV show earlier today, and I started thinking about all the games I used to play as a kid (most of them are currently residing in the cupboard to my left). Before I started playing xbox games, I played RPGs and MMOs on the computer. An old favourite of mine was Neverwinter Nights, but somewhere between that thought and actually installing the game, I had changed the disc to Warhammer 40k: Dawn of War. I started the first mission, and I was instantly transported to my old room where I spent all my time playing games and being "sociable" (chatting on MSN, and any social networking site that my friends lived on at the time), this was when I was a Nerd-in-training. Since then I have levelled up in Nerd at least once a year, I have tried new games, I try to watch Star Trek and other fine shows, and I enjoy reading about the exploits of Batman and Green Lantern. Even though I am writing on Nation of Nerds, I don't think that I am in fact 20th level Nerd. I'm well on my way, I mean, I just started watching Firefly (I know, bad Nerd, it took me a long time, but it's an awesome show) and three episodes in I'm already wondering how they could have cancelled it. I digress...

I am a Heroic-tier Nerd, and Proud to be!

Monday, 16 April 2012

Nerds Assemble!

Welcome, to the first ever post of the Nation of Nerds. Where nerds can come to forget the discriminating world of muggles.

I realise this could be a very cheesy first post, somehow involving real estate in the land of nerds and hoping that you'll come to stay. But thankfully I think I avoided that subject entirely.

Me and my friend Cam are working together on a few things that i think you will enjoy (if you can endure this introduction, you'll have to be richly rewarded) and I'll keep you all up to date on our work through this blog.

So again, Welcome, and I hope you enjoy your stay here, on the Nation Of Nerds.