May 4 2015

40GB?

Adel Gabot

7:02PM

That damned Wolfenstein game is almost 40GB on the hard drive!

It’s going to take a day to download, maybe more.

For a “small” prequel composed of two stories and a few chapters, it’s friggin’ huge. It’s even bigger on the PS4’s hard drive than some of my disc-based games!

Should I have just bought the physical copy? At least that way I can delete and reinstall at will, and if it came to it, I could resell the damn game.

Sheesh.


May 4 2015

What I bought

Adel Gabot

3:42PM

All that sturm und drang was to buy Wofenstein: The Old Blood, a downloadable game from the Playstation Store, among others.

Wolfenstein: The New Order was a slam-bang success, at least as far as I was concerned. It was a single-player-only First Person Shooter, which was ok by me because I hated multiplayer. Finished it in a couple of days, and went on to play it a couple more times, runthroughs that I took my time on and really uncovered every single inch of that game.

The sequel, Wolfenstein: The Old Blood, promises more of the action in a prequel story that happens before the events of The New Order. B.J. Blazkowicz is back in action!

It’s officially going online tomorrow at noon, but you can pre-order it from the store (they aren’t going to sell disc-based versions) at a 10% discount if you were a Playstation Network member.

I can’t wait!


May 4 2015

What the hell do you have to do to get PSN credit?

Adel Gabot

11:20AM

I bought some Playstation Network credit this morning in preparation for buying new game stuff, but I can’t believe the gamut of problems it made me run through.

First, I checked online for current sellers, and settled on a good, cheap one. I texted the guy and he gave me the bank details so I could deposit the payment.

That meant I had to be at the mall a bit earlier than usual to withdraw the funds to deposit into his account, and then be at the bank when it opens to make the deposit. So I went.

I got the cash from the machine at the supermarket next door, and then went to the mall doors so that when they opened, I could run to the bank and be first in line to deposit.

So the mall opens promptly at 10AM and I run to BPI but discover that, over the weekend, they had closed up shop and transferred the whole shebang up to the third floor to more spacious digs. What?

So I run over to the third floor and discover that a line had already formed there. When I finally finished at the bank (they only had one working teller for the dozens of customers), the better part of an hour had already gone by.

So I go to Starbucks to take a pic of the deposit slip so I could email it to the guy, but the iPhone had apparently chosen an alternative keyboard that made it impossible to type in the email address—it insisted on putting an extra space within the address, and it made the Mail app go bonkers.

So I whip out the Macbook Pro and try that option out, but the photo hadn’t transferred to the laptop yet (I really hate that iCloud thing), so what the hell was I going to email?

So I go back to the phone and try to input the guy’s email address in Contacts so I could just access his address from there, but now Contacts is missing.

It takes a long while before I find it and input the address (silly me, it was under the Phone app), and I finally get to the sending part (with lots of trouble inputting text in the small phone screen), but now the 3G connection is acting up, and refuses to send the email. I don’t know if this was because of that specific email, but it really won’t go.

By this time, I was seething with frustration. I finally decide to message the picture to myself, and then get it from the MacBook. But it turns out the app won’t send the pic while it was in Personal Hotspot mode, which of course it was in. So I email the picture to myself, and it sends, although damned slow. And the Macbook takes it’s sweet time to retrieve it from the server. Slow to send, slow to retrieve. But finally it gets to me.

So I email the guy from the MacBook Pro, and send him the pic. It takes a long while again because, like I said, the 3G connection was acting up. But it finally goes through, and I text the guy that I sent him the email with the picture. Finally.

He verifies the payment and then texts me the code.

By now it’s 11:15.

How can such a little thing take up so much of my friggin’ time?

Sheesh.


May 3 2015

Oh, hell

Adel Gabot

1PM

Manny Pacquiao lost.

By a unanimous decision.

So the craftier, more devious fighter won.

Don’t worry, you’re still the man, Manny.


May 3 2015

Desk seems to be a lemon

Adel Gabot

8:41AM

Desk for Desktop Publishing is unintuitive and hard to use. How it got high reviews on the net is beyond me.

I tried it out last night and had trouble with it, so I figured I’d sleep on it and try it again in the morning.

Same banana.

For one thing, it requires me to input my blog credentials apparently everytime I want to use it (at least I think that’s how it works; if not, I can’t figure out the proper way to do it).

I realize that blogging is just one of its functions, and it can do a lot more, but heck, I thought it was a dedicated blogging app.

It’s a lemon, as far as I’m concerned. It may be great for other folk looking for a nice desktop publishing app, but it isn’t for me.

Blogo, on the other hand, is growing on me,

I’ve been writing on it for the past couple of blog entries, and what I see I like.

It’s quicker and simpler to use than the Safari browser app, although it lacks that image-searching-and-sourcing thing, but it’s something I think I can stomach. Apparently Blogo also has image-editing built into it so I don’t really have to use another third-party app to do that.

And it’s dedicated to just simply creating and putting up WordPress posts.

And I’m doing that right now.

Cool.

I’m going to keep using Blogo for a bit and see if I settle in on it. If it does, I’m making it my exclusive blogging app,

 

 


May 3 2015

Fight Night

Adel Gabot

6:08AM

It’s Fight Night today.

Well, for us here in the Philippines, Fight Day. It’s technically happening as Fight Night because it’s at 9PM Saturday, May 2, but that’s in Vegas. Here, it’s happening around 12NN today, May 3.

The whole country’s agog. I mean, balls-out crazy for it.

Stuff on TV and the radio every few minutes, every other page in every newspaper and magazine is a good-luck-Manny ad, and commemorative t-shirts and other paraphernalia on sale on every street corner. Everyone’s got some opinion, and they love to chat everyone’s head off about it.

TSS has been posting stuff about it for weeks, and even got me to do an Arena about Pacquiao as a businessman. I did it, but I didn’t enjoy it.

Since Dad is a big Pacquiao fan and has gone to see every fight in the movie theater live, we got him a ticket to this one. (Damned expensive too, I might add.) In fact, he just said goodbye to me—he’s leaving early to go to church, and then heading straight for Gateway for the fight coverage.

Yes, it’s safe to say the Philippines has gone Pacman-crazy. If they were Pacquiao-obsessed before, it’s reached a fever pitch now with this fight against Floyd Mayweather Jr. Perhaps the biggest fight in boxing history. Certainly the most profitable one.

Me, I’m not really giving in to the hype. I don’t talk about it, and I don’t intend to watch the fight. Watching people beat up other people senseless for financial gain ain’t really my thang. In fact, I find it detestable and barbaric.

But I’m damned curious as to who’ll come up the winner anyway, if only for nationalistic reasons.

Sigh. I’ll probably look for some stream later, or maybe take peeks through Twitter and the net to find out how the fight is coming along.

Such is the power of hype.


May 2 2015

Trying a blogging app on the Mac

Adel Gabot

8:10PM

I’m finally trying out a separate desktop app for blogging, and it’s this one.

I’m currently trying out Blogo, which posts to my WordPress blog without using a browser.

I’d been using Blogsy on my iPad, and it occurred to me that I don’t have one for my Macs, which was stupid. I should have been using one ever since. It just hadn’t occurred to to me, but better late than never.

Blogo is nice enough, if a little too simple. It has a text window and an option to import images, but I can’t find the text formatting features, which I’m used to having. There is a clickable option on the bottom of the text field entitled “categories and #tags”, and a bunch of menu options on the left side for New Post, Post list, Preview, Comments and Import image, but that seems to be it.

What? Am I supposed to embed the HTML codes for Bold and Italics? If this is the case, I’m not likely to use this app.

Oh, there it is. I found it.

You just highlight the words you want to change and there is a pop-up menu that gives you the various options.

Now how do I put the post categories?

Ok, I also found it.

You just type the category in the space below the text. If there is already an existing category for it, it’ll pop up in the window, and if there isn’t, I guess it’ll create it. Of course this means I have to have a good grasp of my categories if I want to stay within my choices.

Let’s try putting in an image.

Ok, I prepped one earlier and resized it, and I’m going to try and put it up.

Ahh. Ok. That’s how it works.

Although this presumes that I already have a properly-sized image on my system (my theme prefers images sized 480 pixels wide). It won’t allow me to find one on the web as I’m accustomed to and I have to slip over to Safari to do that. Which is kinda bothersome.

Ok. That’s how Blogo works.

Let’s try posting this now, and then I’ll look at some other apps.


May 2 2015

Silence

Adel Gabot

Hannibal_zps68b6b0f9

10:12AM

From a Blade Runner documentary to re-watching, for the nth time, The Silence Of The Lambs.

I’ve always loved Silence, even before it became an Oscar-winning film. I loved the novel when it first came out, and I re-read it every now and then. The Thomas Harris narrative always catches my interest, much the same way Stephen King’s does, and I’m often a third of the way into it before I realize that I’m actually reading it again.

Same thing with the movie.

I put the DVD on yesterday in a fit of boredom, just to maybe watch a couple of scenes, and before I knew it I was already in the middle of the movie. Always friggin happens. So I just watch it through, and marvel at how it doesn’t age, how it doesn’t lose its appeal. I’m always anxious watching the Clarice Starling-Jame Gumb confrontation scene even though I know what’s going to happen, even though I’ve seen it countless times.

There are lots of other movies like that for me. Kung Fu Hustle comes to mind. It’s subtitled, and has a odd, different Chinese sensibility and sense of humor that takes some getting used to, but I really love it, and get caught up watching it time and again. That Stephen Chow guy is really something.

And Mission Impossible 3 is another. I couldn’t tell you how much I disliked the first two in the series, but 3 was really something. And so is Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, and most likely the upcoming one. Akira. The Thing. Casino Royale. Star Trek II. The friggin’ Avengers, for crying out loud.

And for some strange reason, Die Hard 4 is the same way for me. It’s not really an intellectually stimulating or mind-opening piece; in fact, I recognize it for the vapid, flash-in-the-pan, cashing-in-on-the-success-of the-previous-Die-Hards that it really is, but somehow it has enduring appeal that makes me watch it time and again.

Of course I love the classics: the original Star Wars (the untampered, unrevised version), the first Indiana Jones movie, Vertigo, Don’t Look Now, The Exorcist, Casablanca and the whole lot of them, but somehow these weird, odd films I’ve mentioned have an unparalleled rewatchability factor. At least for me.

Now please excuse me while I re-watch The Matrix again.


May 1 2015

Dangerous Days

Adel Gabot

Blade_Runner_1982_673

2:46PM

Yesterday I finally saw that making-of documentary people were talking about—Dangerous Days: The Making of Blade Runner.

It’s an over two-hour special made in 2007 that delves into the nitty-gritty details of one of the most fantastic sic-fi movies ever to hit the screen, made to accompany the Blu-ray release of the movie. Apparently, BBC3 released it as a standalone special, so I was able to find myself a torrent copy of it, although it had the BBC logo waterlogged on the upper left. No matter, it was a pristine copy.

They got almost everyone involved in the movie to talk about the production, and boy, do they ever talk. About the mostly problematic setups and processes, the personal conflicts and financial trouble, about the botched efforts by the studio to make it more “understandable” and the Ridley Scott Director’s Cut. Man, I never even realized the production was that troubled.

Distance improves perspective, and the actors weighed in on most of the aspects of the entire thing long years after: Harrison Ford, Daryl Hannah, Sean Young, Edward James Olmos, Rutger Hauer, James Hong, Joe Turkel, even the ones just playing bit parts gave their two cents. Most revealing though were the comments by the production crew, topped of course by Scott, who talked about his troubled dealings with the studio and racial problems with the crew .

I have always, always loved that movie, but it took many viewings before I kinda figured out what Blade Runner was about. I had VHS copies of it that I wore out, and it was the first DVD title I ever bought, and which I still have today.

The dirty, retro-fitted dystopia Scott created seemed awfully real to me, and to find out it was created out of necessity from a dressed-up Hollywood city street back-lot at night (because the sets wouldn’t hold up in bright daylight), and the smoke and rain added to hide the imperfections boggles the mind.

Dangerous Days is a wonderful documentary.


Apr 30 2015

Vast wasteland

Adel Gabot

10:19AM

There’s been a dearth of good game titles on the PS4 this year. At least for me.

I’ve tried buying some of them, but ended up reselling them on the grey market a couple of weeks later.

Dying Light, Shadow of Mordor, even Dragon Age: Inquisition and a whole bunch of others. Some of them, like DAI, got my attention in the beginning, but I eventually lost the taste for them. I don’t know. I feel like I lost something along the way.

I skipped buying what would have been must-gets just a year earlier: Mortal Kombat X, Bloodborne, GTA V, Evolve, Battlefield: Hardline. The thought of playing another horror title or FPS really drags on me, and I didn’t even bother trying them out. I almost bought Bloodborne last weekend but chickened out at the last minute.

I only remotely liked a couple of the recent ones: The Order: 1886 and Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, but those two games I finished in a record time of two days each, and resold them at a loss.

As of the moment, I only have two games in disc form in the house: Destiny and Driveclub. Those two games, for me, have the most legs, and I still play them every now and then, although it’s more for the sake of busywork more than anything.

I have a ton of the free games given out by my membership in the PS Network, although I don’t really play most of them, and I suppose I should clear them out from the hard drive one of these days. Although I think I will renew my PSN membership this June, just for the hell of it, and for the sake of being able to play those free games I haven’t been playing.

I’m thinking of buying a digital download next week, that new Wolfenstein: The Old Blood game. I enjoyed immensely Wolfenstein: The New Order when it first came out, and it took me a while before thinking of reselling that one. But another FPS?

Also, I’m considering The Witcher 3, which comes out in a couple of weeks. That looks like a big, meaty, robust RPG with over 200 hours of gameplay, but then again, I gave up on DAI, so where does that leave me?

I really think I’m slowly outgrowing video games. At the ripe old age of 53, it’s finally happening. Something I’ve jealously guarded against all these years is finally coming to pass. Then again, it’s really odd playing against 14 and 15-year-olds in multiplayer Destiny matches anyway.

We’ll see. Maybe this is just a phase.