Monday, June 11, 2012

Apparently Blizzard has ALWAYS taken cheating seriously...

Here's a quote from the Diablo group on facebook I came across:
"Blizzard Entertainment has always taken cheating in any form in Blizzard games very seriously, and that's no different for Diablo® III. If a Diablo III player is found to be cheating or using hacks, bots, or modifications in any form, then as outlined in the Diablo III end user license agreement, that player can be permanently banned from the game."
Excuse me? "Blizzard Entertainment has ALWAYS taken cheating in any form in Blizzard games very seriously" ALWAYS!? No, only recently, only in WoW and Diablo 3, possibly in Warcraft 3 I didn't play that online.
Since the beginning of Diablo 1 it was chock full of cheaters and hackers. There was a duplication bug in Diablo 1 that NEVER got fixed except in a patch in the Hellfire expansion which was made by SIERRA, not Blizzard. There were hacks that changed the game in weird and messed up ways. There was a hack that made all the cows do the dialogue for people and the people do dialogue for cows. There was a hack that made every single free space in town a pile of 5,000 gold. There were too many hacks to count, and there were many programs out there just dedicated to these types of hacks.
Diablo 2 was also chock full of cheaters and hackers. And now, all Diablo 2 is if you make a multiplayer game is a bunch of spam bots joining and being douches so you can't even make a game of that anymore it's so bad. Well I guess that's still better than what it used to be...create a new game for a lowbie character and even with LEVEL RESTRICTIONS max levels join, make the game harder and just stand outside the Rogue Encampment herp derping it about doing nothing. And to join a game with level restrictions in place, they must be hacking it. Also the amount of character editors for Diablo 2 was pretty much as numerous as the hacker trainer programs that existed for the first Diablo.
Warcraft 2 was full of map hackers and other types of hackers. Hell, some maps even the basics were hacked like terrain, there were maps where they managed to change what terrain was what, making trees normal ground!?
Other games I'm not sure of as I didn't play them online, but with all this they cannot say that they've ALWAYS taken cheating very seriously.  They may take it seriously in Diablo 3, but that's pretty much because your character is stored on their server, in order to hack your character you have to hack their server somehow. That's a major security breech and other companies have been suffering from. Blizzard just doesn't want to look weak like Sony and various other companies.

My life in Canadian Currency

I've always loved currency. I don't want to be rich, just different coins and bills interest me. I buy foreign money and coins on ebay for the collection my mom keeps.

I'm fortunate enough to live in Canada, our currency is always changing.

In 1987 the year I was born the $1 bill was discontinued and the loonie ($1 coin) was put into circulation.

In 1996 when I was still a kid in elementary school (when you could buy penny candies at the local convenience store still) my allowance was 2 bucks a week and I still remember the day I got the new Toonie ($2 coin) that replaced the $2 bill. It was so neat and cool, it was the first bi-metal coin I had ever seen and I was quite fascinated by it.

In 2001 we got new banknotes with new security features such as watermarks, brail bumps and more holographic foil than the old ones.

Recently in 2011 we started to switch to polymer bills, so far we just have the $100 and $50. The plastic bills are odd when you're used to feeling the money to make sure it's the right kind of paper, and they love to stick together when they're new.

This year, 2012, is the last year they will be making our penny. I honestly don't see how we can go on calling it a "cent" when there is no longer a 1/100 denomination but it shouldn't effect business that much, I hear it didn't do bad for Australia to get rid of their penny.

Also this year, 2012, they changed the toonie and loonie designs slightly, not sure if it's just for this year or permanent, but it looks like a permanent change to me. I love the writing on the side of the toonie.

On top of those changes in my lifetime we are always getting new designs on our coins. Our quarter is known for having the caribou on it, but any Canadian knows if you get a fist-full of quarters there's all kinds of designs you can see. From pictures of Veterans, poppies, children's artwork, RCMP, Olympics, and much more. A list can be found here: Wikipedia

Our other currency is less used for special art than the quarters. We had a 1969 penny featuring a rock dove in flight.

We had a 2001 year of the volunteers dime.

 A victory nickel that came out twice, first to stimulate the war effort (WW2) and the second time to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the end of WW2. A hopping rabbit nickel in 1967.  

Almost too many loonies to list, but the list can be found here Wikipedia. Most commemorative toonies just feature the polar bear in differnt poses or multiple polar bears.

In 1999 there was a toonie to commemorate the founding of Nunavut featuring an Inuit drummer. One to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the founding of Quebec City. The design of the coin is dominated by a large fleur-de-lis. Other elements include a ship, and lines representing the St. Lawrence River. A boreal forest one in 2011 which celebrates Canada's boreal forest that covers over half of Canada's landmass.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Space Truckers (1996) - movie

My Rating: 7.5/10
IMDB Rating: 4.9/10

So with the title and the general plot of this movie it just screams b-grade, I mean "Space Truckers"? Do you really expect anything decent here? Well you'd be surprised.

From IMDB:
"John Canyon is one of the last independent space transport entrepreneurs. Rough times force him to carry suspicious cargo to Earth without questions being asked. During the flight the cargo turns out to be multitude of unstoppable and deadly killer robots."

Everything that happens in this movie, every moment of it you look back and you wonder "why is this not a b-grade" the budget and special effects for a 90s movie were quite good (it had a budget of 25 million dollars). The acting was decent, in fact the only thing that was b-grade-ish was that the "really hot" chick wasn't really as hot as everyone was saying. That and the entire bloody story line.

There are events you'd expect in any cheesy b-grade sci-fi movie, from the fat guy getting sucked out of a tiny little hole to the scientist guy that re-builds his body as a robot to space pirates and everything in-between.

To be honest with you don't expect a serious movie from this, it's not a straight comedy, it has humor in it, but the type of humor you'd expect in a b-grade, simple one liners and ridiculous situations. All said and done this movie was actually highly enjoyable (despite it's 4.9/10 rating on IMDB). I would watch this movie a second time and recommend it to friends (If they're into cheesy b-grade movies)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

To the makers of Cities XL 2012: fix your typo

Ever run into a typo in the short description on something that made you go "WTF!?" well here's one from Cities XL 2012 on Steam:
"Cities XL 2012 is the new version of the famous City Builder, which allows you to build, develop and connect together cities of all sizes and types on Cities XL planet. To build your cities, the version 2012 now offers a huge choice of nearly 1."
REALLY!? a "huge choice" of nearly 1!? 1 what? wait...1 is a "huge choice"? Since when was 1 anything a small choice nevermind a huge choice.
scroll down to the full description and it reads:  "To build your cities, the version 2012 now offers a huge choice of nearly 1.000 buildings and structures and over 60 different constructible, huge, varied and incredibly detailed maps."
1.000 is still 1 isn't it? Well I'm assuming they meant 1,000. The short description must be set to stop at a period after so many lines or characters. This typo has been on there since this game came out and it's made me chuckle twice now.

Here's the link to Steam for those of you who won't believe me:

Monday, May 28, 2012

Tim Hortons

As a Canadian, you probably all think I'll go bat shit crazy and start killing people if I don't wait half an hour in the line for a Tim Hortons coffee.

To be quite honest with you, Tim Hortons is good, but not as good as everyone thinks it is. All the bakery stuff is shipped in frozen, pre-baked and just re-heated in a convection oven and why? Because you people are brainwashed.

You love Tim Hortons coffee so much, that you're willing to wait in line for half an hour for a coffee and a donut. Meanwhile there's people in front of you getting 10 coffees and 3 dozen donuts (yes, people ordering multiple dozens of donuts is common there) and you wonder why I said everything's frozen? It's because the demand is so high they can't afford to have five bakers trying to keep up.

As far as the coffee goes, if you knew how much they put for one pot, you'd start to realize, the reason you can't have Tim Horton's coffee at home is because you're cheap. They put a LOT of coffee in there and a LOT of sugar, that's why it's so appealing, strong flavour balanced out with lots of sugar. There is NO secret ingredients, it's just plain good quality coffee. So if you really like Timmies that much, save yourself some time (and money), buy a DECENT quality coffee, and in a home brewer pretty much fill the basket in other words don't cheap out. Buy actual 18% coffee cream, put in twice as much sugar as you normally would and there you have it, Tim Horton's coffee at home.

The sandwiches are really nothing remarkable, nor are the soups. Soups are either a powdered or frozen mix (depending on which soup you get) and sandwiches are merely high quality processed ingredients, to make one at home would be half the cost, so if you really like their sandwiches, again, stop being cheap with what you buy to make sandwiches at home.

The only reason you people like Tim Hortons is because you're too cheap to buy the quality ingredients they sell you, and trust me, you pay for it, in time especially if you go there at lunch for a half hour lineup.

Alligator and Alligator 2: the mutation

Alright, so last night I watched Alligator (1980) wasn't as cheesy as I expected, the production quality was actually decent.
This morning before work I decide to watch Alligator II: The mutation (1991) and I'm expecting this super cheesy mutated alligator that's hardly an alligator, and what do I get? a simple re-hash of the first.
They were both decent movies in their own respects. They each had separate main characters with separate stories, the 90s one obviously featuring a sleaze bag hair greased back thinks he owns everything 90s villain.
The main thing that separated these two movies is that in the first, you started to actually feel for the main character. The second movie, while being more amusing, the main character isn't that easy to relate with.

The general plot of both movies is that an gigantic alligator (30ft in the first one) is living in the sewers of a major city, and all of a sudden they notice it's killing people (18 years later in the first). With such a crappy plot hole of why all of a sudden out of the blue when the creature is 18 years old do they FINALLY start noticing strange disappearances, did it not eat for 18 years? You assume that you're in for a simple b-grade monster flick, low budget, crappy story, mediocre acting. Honestly, this movie had decent actors, the story (other than the massive plot hole I mentioned) was good and the budget was $1,500,000 for an early 90s movie that's not too bad. 
You go in expecting a b-grade but then it turns out it isn't. Alligator is the most serious movie I've seen with a b-grade idea and they actually manage to pull it off.
Honestly, if you like a monster flick, both Alligator movies are worth the watch, definitely check them out, and now IMDB links:
Alligator (1980)

Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Avengers - Briefly what I thought of the movie

So I went to see the Avengers in theatres about a week or two ago, and if anyone hasn't watched it, it's worth a watch when it comes out on video.
There is not a lot of story (which is probably the best way to put major hero names into the title) and they didn't include Spiderman or Wolverine, but they did great with what they had. And hey, after Spiderman 2 and 3, I think if they included Spiderman I'd refuse to watch it. What little story there is is based on the premis that Loki (Thor's brother) steals a super powerful energy source (the name escapes me) and is going to use it to open a portal to bring forth an army to conquer Earth. S.H.I.E.L.D. Gathers together superheroes to capture Loki.
At first they didn't know what to make of Thor and an epic battle ensued, there was some bickering amongst the troops but they managed to pull it together and work as a team to fend off total doom. Standard superhero plot, really.
What made The Avengers stand out to me was that they didn't try and bog it down with backstory for each character, instead they drew from each characters respective movies. This means they have a lot more time for ass kicking and high action. (Unlike Green Lantern which was a good movie but at least 60% buildup) Each character was unique and followed the personalities set down in the previous movies nicely, Thor was a little arrogant, Captain America was out of touch, Iron Man was a dick, Hulk was good at smashing stuff. Now, I haven't seen Iron Man or Captain America (but now I want to) but I have to say they made good use of previous characters introduced in Thor, and possibly ones from Iron Man and Captain America, running on assumption for those two of course. This continuity made me feel like I already related to a lot of the minor characters, there was already some familiarity there meaning more room for action and less for introductions.
The problems I had with the movie were pretty minor. I've heard some people complaining that it was basically Iron Man 3. Well of course the obnoxious character is going to stand out like a sore thumb. They really did not try and center the movie around him. Hulk was way too controlled, nobody should be able to order The Hulk around, he's unreasonable. They had to do it that way though, otherwise it would turn into a comedy with the Hulk just kicking everyone's ass. Another problem I had with the movie was the 3D. I haven't watched a lot of movies in 3D, my first 3D movie was Thor, and that was amazing, but the way they're going about it now, the 3D is so mediocre I had to take my 3D glasses off just to remind me that the movie is in 3D. Why do I want to spend the extra money for something that's hardly even noticeable?
To sum it up, great high action movie, anyone who liked Iron Man, Thor and Captain America will love this movie. Torrent it, rent it, buy it, whatever you do with movies, but make sure you get it in HD, it's worth it.