Sunday, January 27, 2008

Kauai, Hawaii

We recently got back from a trip to Kauai.

It was like a late anniversary trip since my company branch closed just before our real anniversary. It was an awesome trip and I think we'll go back to Hawaii sometime - but a different island for sure. Maybe the big island to see the volcano!

We hiked 8 or 9 miles on the first day and got stuck on the rocky cliffside trail after sunset - luckily we had our flashlights with us and we made it back alive. AJ hurt her knee from slipping all over the muddy trail and the rest of the week was forced relaxation. Although we did go snorkeling twice and kayaking on the Hanalei river. Not TOO relaxed! heh heh

I uploaded the photos to Flickr so you can check them out via the link on the right. ->>
Hawaii is expensive - but a great way to experience a tropical island without leaving the comfort of the "American lifestyle" you've come to enjoy. (Note slight cynicism...)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Mass Effect

I finally finished Mass Effect this past weekend.

It's one of the best games I've ever played I think.
It took me a while to finish it, but I did try to do everything available. I spent too long going back over conversation trees to see what every option would provide.

I think they did an awesome job on the visuals. I felt like I was playing a movie. They used motion blur, depth of field and "film grain" all the time during gameplay and it really made it feel cinematic. The only things I was disappointed in were during cutscenes: (and I'm just nit-picking here...)

Lip synching. They got close, but it was mostly just flapping of lips and no real forming of phonemes.

Lighting. The lighting was awesome most all the time except in some cutscenes where they chose the use lighting from underneath on the main character for dramatic effect even when the scene lighting called for something else. Also, on full body shots the characters didn't cast shadows.

Oh, and elevator loading was a good cover, but used all too often IMHO - I didn't want to go down to the barracks on the ship because it meant an elevator ride. :(

Once when fighting Rachni they popped in with no textures. I found this glitch amusing. I could see the modeling much better. Check it out:

Yeah I just took photos of my TV cuz I'm bootleg like that.

If you have a 360 - play this game.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008


Happy New Year to ya!