Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – Review *Spoiler Warning*

“I am one with the Force. The Force is with me.” – Chirrut Îmwe

 

Even after leaving the theater, these words still leave chills in me, and it brings up a well of emotions i haven’t felt in a long time.

Star Wars: Rogue One delivers some much needed unique story to the Star Wars franchise. Little was known about the team that acquired the Death Star plans, and not much was known aside from Leia Organa’s statement in Episode IV that “A lot of good people died getting their hands on these plans.” and now its been made clear just how big a tragedy this story arc is to the overall Skywalker-centric universe.

Felicity Jones – You’ll love her in Rogue One!

The events take place between Episode III (Revenge of the Sith) and Episode IV (A New Hope). The tale unravels the life of Jyn Erso, daughter of the scientist behind the creation of the Death Star’s main weapon. It also details how the events leading up to Episode IV show a much greater threat from the Empire, and how the Rebellion seemed like a lost cause. It paints a clear picture that past the events of Episode III, the Empire is at the brink of succeeding in their galactic quest for order and peace (through fear and death).

Commence primary ignition… Pew Pew!

But just like real life, there will be victims of such a campaign. Those that wish to rule with an iron first will find that the descendants of those they have “quelled” will rise up.

Much can be said about Jyn, who was ok with the current Galactic Order that the Empire was doling out. But as events and relationships unravel, her, and her rag-tag band of rebels see that there is indeed no other way out but to fight. Much to the disagreement of the Rebel Alliance, they eventually banded together to back-up Jyn’s mission to Scarif.

Seeing Jedha as the first victim of the Death Star echoed some of the horrors to come when her power is unleashed on Alderan.

Some of my favorite scenes come from Yavin IV, the rebel base Vader seeks to stamp out in Episode IV. We had bits and pieces of it, but seeing the drama unfold in a shakey alliance rings too close to home. A desperate people, merely wanting to live out in peace. But their ideals will soon be stamped out by the power, might and oppression of a Galactic Empire ruled by evil.

All in all it was a very refreshing take on the Star Wars franchise. Especially with the story revolving around non-force users and the sad tragedy that the most they have to offer are their lives to a cause. But what glorious lives those were.

Special mention goes to Donnie Yen’s character; Chirrut Îmwe. A guardian of an old religion. Not powerful enough in the force to be a Jedi, but in-tune with it enough to know when the Force has a direct hand in all things. Its through his eyes (or lack thereof) that guides us viewers that the force is, indeed, a power that surrounds us, penetrates us, and binds the galaxy together (or at least each integral portion of the saga known as Star Wars).

I am one with the Force. The Force is with me.

But hey, this review is only a scratch at the surface of what is an awesome take on the universe. It gives us much more depth to the desperation and darkness the Empire has over the galaxy. That and the definition of “A new hope” wherein hope is not defined by a Skywalker, but rather the selfless actions of Jyn Erso vkox4qn.

We could surely use more of Rogue One’s members in real life. Especially in this day and age where dark times surround us once more.

So go see the movie! It’d rate it 8 out of 10 stars. I’d have given it a higher rating if not for the slow start for character build up. But to see Donnie Yen immediately create a stand-out character, well some balance could have been struck in the first part of the film to make her move faster.

Here’s another review by some friends of ours at the Rule of Nerd.

Blizzard Servers under DDOS attack

So I attempted to log in-game and ran into a message from Blizzard that certain network providers are under DDOS attack.

The Poodle Corp has just hired Mr. Robot to DDOS Blizzard with the Dark Army.

The Poodle Corp has just hired Mr. Robot to DDOS Blizzard with the Dark Army.

A group calling themselves “The Poodle Corp.” claims responsibility to the DDOS attack of Blizzard’s network providers. Seems that only their servers are affected. Other games we play are currently working fine so it seems only they are affected at the moment.

 

They released a statement earlier on twitter;

 

Blizzard CS says “It wasn’t us! Its your network provider”.

 

“We continue to actively monitor an ongoing DDOS attack against network providers, affecting latency/connections to our games.”

I think its sad that they’re vulnerable to their service providers. Then again, when your electricity goes off, blame the electric company right? Probably not that bill you forgot to pay or are bullying your provider to drop their prices to spec so that you can make a wider margin Activision-Blizzard? Kiddin. Those are just possible plots you might see in this new series i’m watching on netflix called MR. Robot. Its good therapy. To see a mirror image of myself portrayed breaking the 4th wall.

In any case, Bliz, Puleaze, get them servers back online. I’m still trying to get “prepared” for Legion!

Microsoft Surface Pro 4 Review Rave

 

This is the laptop replacement you are looking for!

The Microsoft Surface Pro 4 does take the cake for best possible laptop replacement out there. Based from the specs and performance, Microsoft outdid itself with the 4th generation of Surface Pro. I’ve had the privilege to use varied laptop devices out there but this one takes the cake. From its previous successor the Surface Pro 3, you can see that all Microsoft focused on were refinements of an already great design.  So here are a few pro’s and cons to this i7 256GB version of the Surface Pro 4;

 

Pros;

  • Really thin. And i mean THIN!
  • Device feels liberating being able to have a full operating system and not just a limited spec tablet device.
  • Surface Pen is beautiful. From how its constructed up to how it interacts with the screen.
  • With Office 360, you will be FULLY mobile with that 1TB of cloud storage.
  • Battery life is more similar to an actual laptop. Pretty sure its got the same battery life as a Macbook air. Clocked about 4 hours on each device with heavy use.
  • The magnesium finish is just to die for.
  • Rear stand can withstand abuse. It won’t feel loose-tread unless you broke the actual hinge.
  • Can play games! like Xbox One compatible games!
  • Seamless switching between horizontal and tablet mode.
  • Special mention goes to the Microsoft Support Team who helped me get it working to top shape.

 

Cons;

  • Limited amount of peripherals (then again you don’t really need them with this baby).
  • Some out of the box errors on the system. (Thank God the Microsoft Support team is up to spec). They got me up and running with the right settings quick!

 

Microsoft Did it Right!

All in all the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 i7 is really the right one! Just the right amount of power, battery life, and sexiness to boot!

Surface pro in review was a 256 GB 6th Generation Intel® Core™ i7 with 8 GB of RAM.

If you want a more in-depth review, checkout TechnoBuffalo’s Review!

 

Review: Warcraft The Beginning

Welcome to the n00bgamer’s review of Blizzard and Legendary Pictures‘ movie “Warcraft The Beginning”. Here we’ll discuss some spoilers, insights, what they got right, and what they left us in the dark with.

First off, i’d rate this picture a 3 out of five. Mostly because it was like they were filing out a template based (loosely) from Warcraft 1’s story-line. So from the choices of playable characters, it felt like they just went ahead and picked off their favorite artists to produce this movie.

Check it out before it's gone!
Check it out before it’s gone!

Don’t get me wrong, I’d really recommend people see it, and then experience the World of Warcraft game. The movie tickles you a little bit, but the real magic and content is already in the game. Much of the experience you’d actually want to play through rather than be spoon fed the details in a single 2 hour sit-down.

What it really is, is an extended introduction to jumping into World of Warcraft. Now for movie-goers, this isn’t good enough. Much is proven how little people were in the theater, but hey, it’ll take more than a movie to really get warcraft going again.

What it doesn’t talk about is the awesome community behind the players of World of Warcraft. Where you get in on the action of taking down a corrupted Blackhand in Draenor along with 40 other like minded individuals, each with their own personality and quirks.

Other thing i found out was that, female Orcs are so Hot! Garrrrrrroooooownah!

Garona
Orc lady pretty!

All in all though, the R13 restriction was very limiting. I remember being part of a 10 year old crowd into games when Warcraft: Orcs vs Humans first hit the shelves. Those 22 years of following that IP has grown into quite the story. Its pretty epic also counting you can live through those experiences in a virtual world for hours and hours on end.

Hey and if you won’t give the movie a chance? Go for the free battlechest!

SM North Edsa 3D movie giveaway!
SM North Edsa 3D movie giveaway!

Its basically a free World of Warcraft Battlechest with 30 days. Already confirmed it works with the Recruit a Friend program also, so it really works to bring a few friends and introduce them to Azeroth! It’ll only be around till Sunday so grab em while they still have ’em!

 

 

Total War Warhammer Limited Edition. An Unexpected Unboxing

So i was walking along my favorite mall and decided to visit my favorite game retailer. I was totally not expecting it. But lo and behold, there was this little game clad in aluminum that didn’t seem to get display preference on the shelf. I squinted, and looked again. Rubbed my eyes and looked one more time. It was a gaw-darn-nit Limited Edition of Total War: Warhammer!!! I couldn’t believe my luck! I asked the sales lady when the item shipped and she said last night. They literally haven’t stacked it up yet so i was one of the first today to get a limited edition copy. And as stated, this leads to an unexpected unboxing of this juicy little morsel from Sega.

Total Warhammer!
Total Warhammer!

Pretty standard for a limited edition. Embossed box art. A protective cardboard sleeve of some sort with the game details.

But what really got me was the embossed symbol on the back.

For Emperor! For Sigmar!

For Sigmar!
For Sigmar!

So for you warhammer fans out there, this is totally a game to get! Get it?

So if you want to get your fix of the game (buy original only), hop over to your favorite Datablitz retailer to get a copy. And yes, i am not ashamed to shamelessly plug my favorite game retailer in the hopes that they eventually let us review their games to augment to their marketing exposure!

Special note to Sega, this franchise has been going along for years now. I’ve been following their Total War series up to Atilla. Though some of you naysayers who just can’t take strategy would look low on the repetitive manner, my hat still goes off to SEGA. I miss their dreamcast but hey, i’ll always pump quarters into their arcade games and whatever they’ve got. (Missing my Megadrive x64).

I find it odd though that this game shipped right before the launch of Blizzard’s Warcraft movie here locally. But then again i’d rather think Bliz got the idea from the ahem, somewhere else. Dungeons and Dragons of course! And of course those space marines aren’t a rip-off from Warhammer 40k.. of course not! LOL

Enjoy gaming toonheads!

The N00bgamer’s Presidential Platform for the 2016 Elections

The 2016 Elections are upon us! Time to once more head to the polling booths to choose our next set of leaders! But we’re all tired of campaign promises on law and reform. What we’d like to hear are hard solutions or concrete ideas that are practical and simple to execute. On that note, we can science the sheesh out of our problems and come up with equitable and practical solutions.

That being said, here are some of the N00b-generation ideas that we’d like to propose;

Poverty and Housing

We propose the creation of the “Human Energy Solution” which consist of pre-fabricated bio-solar housing units that have the following properties;

  • Built from a strong material/foundation such as empty shipping containers.
  • Each container will be fitted with solar panels and a bio-waste to energy system.
  • Each container can be fitted with a waste-water recycling system, as well as integrate fish stock as a food source which can be grown from within the bio-waste recycling system.
  • Edible plant stocks can also be grown using the bio-processing system as a food source.
  • With the solar panels and bio-gas system, energy and food could now be grown using the abundant solar power as well as bio-fuels to power backup generators or fertilizer for the plant stock.
  • Considering that each container unit is large enough for a family, this strategy could be used for mass housing relocation.
  • By using a simplified coupling system between the bio-units, several of these container storage units could be interconnected to form a super-battery, capable of making villages of previously disenfranchised  now a potential money making unit by selling the power created by the bio-solar village and sold back to the consumer network. This strategy guarantees each household an income capability in order to lessen the need for them to return to where they were relocated from.
  • Since the size and shape is now standardized, multiple units of these bio-solar farms/containers can now be sent to the other islands of the Philippines for the national government to fulfill on its commitments of housing, food, and economical opportunity.
  • We have over 7000 islands… this seems the most practical solution to getting power/services out towards remote locations.

Military and Peacekeeping

Self Defense by far is one of the most dismal topics here given the volatility of events and participants in the West Philippine Sea. By and far, we don’t really need to focus on offensive weaponry. Rather, should push come to shove and we see war, the islands are better defensible using tactics seen during the Vietnam War.

Defensive Parameters;

  • Create multiple tunnel networks around the islands. Capitalize on already existing natural tunnel networks, and augment them with the capability to move personnel and supplies between skirmishes.
  • We have a very healthy community of underground arms manufacturers. Some of which are boasted to perform better than their original predecessors. The National Government should provide these engineers with an amnesty program, as well as capability to now supply our under-serviced military with upgraded and tuned weapons designed for skirmishes in tropical conditions.
  • Create a Fast-Craft response Self Defense Unit. Retrofit the navy with Jet-ski propulsion vehicles designed to operate in only 2-3 inches of water. This will enable us to fully realize guerrilla tactics on the water as well as rapid deployments between islands. We should utilize this strategy (as seen from terrorist movements) as a method for repelling invaders and rapid deployment for peacekeeping. The land and sea terrain being what is is, is already a tactical advantage. By using fast-craft such as these, we’ll be able to use the terrain as a force multiplier, or a way to funnel enemies into a kill-zone.
  • Create an effective intelligence unit. One that uses stealth, guile, and compassion. We’re not here to repress people, we’re here to weed out the ones that want to create destabilization.
  • Implement a citizen empowered response system for crime reporting as effective as 911. Our current response times are horrible.
  • Get our nations best and brightest. Pay them a rate that prevents corruption. Induct them into what an “ideal society” is like before arms training. A soldier at his best behavior, is a pillar of a good and orderly society.

Government Services, Graft and Corruption

Computerize Everything! The less human facilitation/intervention, the less potential for graft. Our BPO and Call Center industry have the right tools to cater to the administration of each citizens requirements. If all government services and ID’s started with the biometric system, as well as unified under one database, you can seriously lessen the labor requirement needed to service the rest of the country. This should doubly apply for taxes and elections. Once we fully adapt to the current technology of API’s and databases, its harder to cheat the system.

 

Those are just my two cents. Your duty is to go out and Vote! You need to vote to elect the right candidate for the 2016 elections.

In the end, its not up to our elected officials to solve our problems. Its really up to us.

Discipline, Integrity, Technology. Those are the foundations of my platform. Vote N00bgamer!

Revisiting Eve Online

Its been years since i first fell in love with Eve Online. Since her latest expansion and updates, i can proudly say that during my revisit, there were tons of new aspects, as well as features to this true Sandbox MMO.

I was playing this game before world of warcraft and its true sandbox nature is what really caught me. First launched in 2003, it captured a consistent 20k CCU’s on the server at any given time. That’s a lot of dedication for a game that has real-time circumstances that could arise in a flash and just like that, leave you without a ship, and pod killed.

Take a look at this awesome footage of what actual combat looks like in-game.

The component of being able to coordinate with real people as if they were their own corporation leaders is one of the truly terrifying aspects of this game. As it stands, “The Imperium” is gearing up for one of the largest confrontations against a united federation of corporations. To think this has been brewing over time now is yet another great aspect to the real-life politics that occur in-game.

Here’s another view from youtube’s Tallardar:

They were initially known as the CFC or “Cluster Fuck Coalition”.

eve online armada

Now they’ll be going to war.

 

 

 

You sure you brought enough guns to this fight?
You sure you brought enough guns to this fight?

Eve Online will continue to amaze and dominate in the MMO space as long as there are enough people to want to experience the real drama of a true to life space opera.

 

Oh look! They have a recruit-a-friend program! https://secure.eveonline.com/recruit/

Improve your sluggish X-Com2 play experience!

Ok so after a few days of hitting up X-Com 2, you’re probably like me who’s wondering if those spare seconds of action sequence are really part of the game, symptoms of a sluggish or old pc, or just a bad release version.

Turns out, some of the modders on steam have figured out that a lot of that extra time between shots and actions were actually coded into the game as part of the experience. Some would disagree of course and would say that Firaxes and 2k owe us a patch that improves game performance.

For those who can’t wait for a fix, here’s a mod for you!

Shot percentage 100
Hit the picture for a link to the steam store to get “Stop wasting my time mod for X-Com 2”

It’s a must have for those that don’t have newer computers but want to have a more responsive play experience. It works marvels by cutting some of the pauses out of the combat experience in the game and does a great improvement for responsiveness.

Of course, if your’re a n00b like me, this means you’ll be running into Advent and not taking full advantage of Concealment mode just to draw that sword and slash at some snakeman that’s grabbed your mate.

Sadly it doesn’t do much either for the mission loading time, as that’s the game loading up its assets for you (but there’s a mod for that!).

Got any other mod suggestions to improve your play experience? Hit us up in the comments!

Update: 2/17/2016

Just found another hotfix for the game, this one’s credit goes to my favorite credible gaming site “RockPaperShotgun”.(see their full article here). 

This one requires you to go to your Nvidia control panel and turning down the Maximum pre-rendered frames to the setting of “1”.

Its labelled as "Flip Queue Size" on AMD
Its labelled as “Flip Queue Size” on AMD

With these tweaks now in place i think i’m reaching the 40’s fps finally lol.

X-Com 2 has launched!

So Feb. 5’s finally here. And X-Com 2, the game is now unlocked on steam and i got the digital deluxe version because they still bundled the pre-order bonus into it.

Downloading... Wait till Feb 5 Pacific Time before you play the game! (So says my overpriced, yet super slow ISP).

Downloading… Wait till Feb 5 Pacific Time before you play the game! (So says my overpriced, yet super slow ISP).

Patience is a virtue. But not mine work tracking software.

So to whittle the time away, here’s some neat youtube videos of the gameplay from youtube user ChristopherOdd: