Tuesday, August 22, 2006

WoW Zombie!

It took me two years and all the willpower I could mustster to avoid buying and playing World of Warcraft, arguably the best MMO out their. Well sad to say, I finally succumbed to it's seductions and charms. Now I am a living zombie who sits in front of the monitor "Grinding" away to reach that next level, or to accomplish that next quest, or to gather that last item, or aargh it endless! Now I know what the curse of undeath is, even in my sleep I am restless... In the few hours I manage to rest after a nightfull of WoW adventuring I still find my dreams haunted by the images of that accursed game. I don't doubt that I probably mime swinging a sword while fast asleep, and drooling in my bed. The worst part is that I'm only in the early stages of the game, and only now am I realizing how BIG the friggin' game is. It's gonna' be the death of my social life that's for sure. From someone who came from pen and paper RPGs the opportunity to group with other players is really cool! In the first few hours of exploring Azeroth, I was invited to group with a Druid, and a Warrior, and it was fun knowing that a real person was looking after your back during battles, healing you, or helping you pummel a common enemy. I was even recruited to join a Guild, and I was only a measly level 4 Nightelf Hunter armed with nothing more than a cheap dagger, and a flimsy bow! Bet you can't do that on friendster. Well I got a long way to go and very little time to do it. And for those who are foolishly thinking of getting into the vice, let this be a warning lest you become a WoW zombie yourself... Run!

Sunday, August 13, 2006


Ahh nothing is more depressing than staring out the window and waiting for the rain to stop. When you've consumed all those DVDs, and played all the latest console games, and nothing is on the tube, what's a person to do? Well what do we have here? It seems to be a pile of papers bounded neatly, with a pretty nifty cardboard cover. Inside are hundreds of pages of words, and no illustration in sight! What the!? Might as well read it. And so after a few months here are some of the books I've read so far this year. First of is Raising Atlantis, a standard adventure/thriller in the same vain as Dan Brown's earlier works such as Deception Point. It asks the old legendary question, what if Atlantis was real? It's got good pacing, and interesting characters, but I wish some of them were explored with more depth. It becomes silly as it nears the end, but what do you expect from a book about Atlantis? Anyway it was a good read, and well worth my time. Next is the Last Templar, again an adventure/thriller. It is kinda' like The Da Vinci Code, where it delves into the mysteries and history of the Templar Knights, and their so-called great treasure, which could be... the Holy Grail. Starts with a bang, but fizzles in the end. Still a good read. Next up is the Bronze Canticle series. I was really missing reading fantasy books, and Dragonlance happens to be one of my favorite novels. Well one of its creators Tracy Hickman along with wifey Laura (who has also written a plethora of fantasy books along with hubby) has created a new series of books focusing on Mystics, Faeries, and Goblins, and no they don't belong in one world, but they do share visions in a Dreamland kind of place. It's quite complicated, and confusing at times, but it all comes together eventually. I've only read Mystic Warrior, and Mystic Quest, and both exhibit a fine degree of epic proportions. Unfortunately, alternating between the other races does confuse the reader, and the story itself seems kind of rushed due to lack of space. It could have been better, and I'm still waiting on reading the final installment called Mystic Empire. Last but certainly not least is the Christ Clone Trilogy, composed of In His Image, Birth of an Age, and Acts of God. Well like the title suggests it's about Christopher Goodman, a man cloned from the live cells found in the Shroud of Turin. Weird? You have no idea, because as the story progress man, and the world are plunged into chaos, plagues, and disasaters, all of which comes from the prophecies in the Bible. It's one of the more plausible and engaging End of the World kind of stories, and mixes a lot of science along with bible passages. It's pretty good and intriguing, but gets kinda' preachy and predictable by the third book. Still it is a must read!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

DaVinci Hoopla

Now that the movie has been shown, I still don't get what all the hoopla was about? Yes i've read the book many months prior to all the uproar the movie got, and yes it never crossed my mind that it could be more than fiction. Come on, the damn thing was entertainment! People get pent-up for the lamest things. All the controversy has only generated more interest in both the movie and the book, as well as other tag-alongs such as other books concerning the Divinity of Christ. When there's a hit there's a writ!

I respect their beliefs and opinions about the matter, but some of it were really terribly overreacted. The last time I heard about books being burnt was during Hitler's time! Negative vibes dudes! Bigotry breeds hate, and all of it stems from fear. Unfortunately the more tighter you hold, the more it slips away. And what about those picketers? What the hell is that? A Marilyn Manson concert. Boy have our society really hit bottom.

Well after all that's been said and done, the world goes on. No rapture, no armageddon. It was just a movie. It all comes to a peaceful end.

Evolve or die...

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Step Away From The Pencil

For anybody remotely familiar to comic books, should now be fully aware that most of the innovative stuff are not coming from DC or Marvel anymore. So where can it be found? And What's the price for innovation? Well the answer is simple, you can easily find them across the web, and most of them are absolutely free!

Well actually this is not news to anybody who has been living on the internet for the past couple of years. What I mean about "living", is for people who don't bother to go to "real" shops anymore (or rarely). People who download music, instead of going to record stores, download porn... I mean movies, instead of going to the theater, gets advice from an online shrink, etc. Well those people have been aware of webcomics for the longest time. Funny thing is, very few really know its history (short as it may), and how this revolution is changing sequential art as we know it.

I've been a comic nut for years. I made a few of them back in gradeschool, and even up to early college years. I still buy some, and totally appretiate this unique artform. It feels like, I've been studying it all these years, despite my hiatus from it all. Well webcomics has reinvegorated my interest, and for a while I really wanted to get something done. But alas, I found out I had no art supplies anymore. Then again, if you were going to go digital, why not go all the way? All the tools are in my harddrive. Photoshop, Illustrator, Painter, plus hardware such as a wacom tablet, everything was set! Wasn't it?

Well apparently, I had to unlearn a few things, and learn new stuff. The web is rich with tutorials as well, but if you're still one of the old fashioned who prefers a book than a browser, well you should go buy Webcomics Tools and Techniques for Digital Cartooning. I found it pretty useful, and informative. Lots of Walkthroughs and Work Flows, plus the ins and outs of digital comics. Highly recommended read for comic nuts like me!

When everything has gone digital, can someone sample my soul, and post it on the web?

Friday, February 24, 2006

End of Days

Okay, so maybe the title is a little bit too dramatic, but it certainly feels like that when you read or watch the news. Here in the Philippines, the calamaties, riots, crimes, and political mayhem seems to be neverending. Today in particular, is a sad day for democracy, as the midget and her horde of pigs has just declared a State of Emergency throughout the country. Kinda' ironic that we're a couple of steps from martial law again just as we are celebrating EDSA 1. Maggots!

A few days ago, calamity stuck Leyte as thousands of people we're buried under 30 meters of mud due to landslide. It's great to see how a bit of international news exposure can lead to foreign help. Anyway, I don't think they'll be saving anyone alive anymore. One chicken was saved though (groan). To make matters worse, two of our finest volcanoes, the Mayon and Taal, are said to be making it's presence felt again. More opportunities for the politicians to pose in front of the cameras.

It's strange how the death of a single celebrity could be viewed as a tragedy, while the death of thousands of ordinary people relegated as a statistic. Excuse me for being cynical today, but I really don't see any reason to be otherwise.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Wrestling With The Muse

I remember things being a lot more simple when cooking up a story for RPG game sessions in my younger days. I don't get to play RPGs anymore except on the PS2, but I still like exercising my creative writing once in a while. I can't help it, I dream up something, or get inspired by books, movies, and other things, and boom! My mind goes on overdrive formulating a story that would incorporate my ideas. Sometimes the ideas would just overflow, to the point that I don't think about anything else except how to tie up all the disparate ideas into one single cohessive plot. Then there are days where my mind would just shut down, and everything just grinds to a halt. The harder I try to think about a way out of a writing rut, the deeper I sink. I guess you really can't expect the muse to hang around every single day, but when they do go on vacation I ussually just do something else, and when you least expect it, the lights go back on.

I'm not a proffesional writer, and the stuff I've done have remained largely unread. But thats okay, cause I'm really just doing it for myself. I'd probably go crazy if I don't put my ideas down on paper (or computer). Even if most of my work are really just for personal reasons, I still do work hard to make it just right. I'm my own critic, and I'm tougher than Simon when judging my own work. I guess I've never been confident of my own writing, but I'd like to think that I could do something out of all the ideas in my head. I do read up on articles about writing (especially comic book writing, my favorite), but in the end its my own personal style I should depend on, because its more natural, and perhaps more effective. Maybe someday I could put out some of my stories for the public to see (and hopefully enjoy), but for the meantime I'll just go wrestle with my muse until I get a decent story to dish out.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Paradise Continues

Despite the late night gimmick, my gf and I still woke up early. The morning was quite cozy, and decided to open the windows, and to my surprise (and utter delight) the sun had come out, the weather had finally cleared, and the true splendor of the island was revealed. After a quick shower, we awaited for the rest of the gang to wake up. At 8 am we all headed for the Breakfast buffet, and had a hearty meal, to awaken the senses and drown away the alcohol. The sausages and omelets were satisfying enough, that by the time we were finished, I was fully energized and raring to go and take a swim. The sight of the sun, and the bleached white sands also added to everyone’s mood, and so after taking a few snapshots of the wonderful sceneries, we all went for a swim. This is the time when you just float, feel the water around you, look up to the sky, and let everything fade away into the warm touch of serenity. The few minutes spent on the water felt like an eternity of peace, like the feeling of being weightless, back in the womb of your mother… er okay I’m blabbing, sorry bout that. We spent most of the morning on the beach, just doing laps, floating, or goofing around on the sand, taking pictures of each other. Me gf decided to get her hair braided, just like my cousin’s, so I took her to the nearest braiding local. Too bad the hotel forbade us not to get henna tattoos, or else I would have gotten two of them on my arms (oh well). After getting bored with the beach, the guys wanted to try the Jacuzzi, so we made our way to the pool area, and ordered a couple of beers, as we spent the rest of the morning relaxing on the poolside.

By the time my gf was finished with her braid, it was already noon, and my tummy was beginning to grumble. Taking quick showers up on our respective rooms, we all decided to hunt for the best seafood resto for lunch; unfortunately, the prices (especially the prawns and lobster) were ridiculously high, so we settled for a resto that offered a wider variety of food (and it also helps to have two chefs along), and ordered everything from sinigang, grilled prawns, steak, and fruit shakes. Again, we consumed the meal like a category 5 typhoon, leaving nothing to waste. Still not content, the rest of the gang headed for the nearest crepe shop, while my gf and I wandered around the stalls and started splurging on bracelets, anklets, and what-have-yous. By 2 pm we all decided to take a break and play poker for a while, but instead we all fell asleep and had siestas instead. Later that afternoon, my cousin called me up to tell me that they were going to stroll around Station 1 and to just follow afterwards. We met up in a bar called Café del Mar (Ibiza?), and waited for the sunset, while sipping on some cocktails, and beer. Now this is life! While my other cousin played with the local children, making sand castles, I ordered for some late afternoon snacks, took some pictures, and tried smoking those Indian/Muslim tobacco contraption (shisha, or however its spelled). Just when things were going swell, it started to drizzle and we had to take cover until it passed. By that time, dinnertime had arrived again, and after that was over, we were all feeling too full, or exhausted to head for the bars that early in the night. Heading back to the rooms, we decided to play a few rounds of poker to pass time, just until the nightlife started to heat-up. By 10 pm we all headed for the nightlife hotspots and decided to go bar hopping.

Our first stop was Aria, a laid back kind of bar with table situated on the beachfront sands, with people dancing while flailing fire (trust me on this one). It looked kinda’ complicated but the locals all agree that its all in the wrist, and the rhythm (tell that to me when I get my face burnt). We basically just ordered some tequila, and drank beer while chatting the night away. We then headed for a nearby bar called Hey Jude, where they played awesome music, prompting the people to party on and dance. Just watching the various people in and around was entertaining enough, and the alcohol was starting to kick in (what time do we need to get up tomorrow again?). We then headed for another bar situated near the beach, where a local reggae band was playing. Now buzzing with alcohol, we rocked along with the band; unfortunately it started to drizzle again (crap!). By the time it stopped, the party at Hey Jude was at full gear, and so we decided to party the rest of the night there. There was music, dancing, more alcohol, maybe some pot, but the rest of it was a blur, and the next thing I knew the phone was ringing, it was already morning, my cousin was on the other line informing me we had to checkout before 9, and my head was killing me. Bottom line? We all hit rock bottom last night, and had tremendous fun, but now reality was seeping back in. by 9 am that day we were heading back to Manila, but we would be taking back with us memories that wewill cherish for a long time. I only wish we could spend one more day, but I guess we have to save something for next time.

FYI: Our flight got delayed again. Curse you Cebu Pacific!

Thanks to Boracay Regency Hotel, and to the nice people of Boracay, See you all next time!