Posts Tagged ‘hope’

Cool Guys Don’t Look At Explosions

Yeah, cool guys really don’t. Even when they’re Mark Wahlberg.

It’s Friday night in my country, and I got nothing better to do than posting an update for my blog. I mean, that is something special, considering the great irregularity in which I keep you up to date about my nerdy hobbies and my internal workings. So what happened in the last days?

I was quite busy on my World of Warcraft character, farming and buying Runecloth to boost my reputation with the Darkspear Trolls, and now I can call myself proudly “Akinya of Sen’jin”! The title was long overdue and is anything but special, but I’m still proud of it. Next project: Argent Champion. I’m not looking forward to all the Scholo / Strat runs…*sigh*

In other news, I’m getting more and more impatient during my wait for Champions Online. Cryptic is teasing me and all the other sad people who didn’t win a beta key in one of the many free-give aways with more and more “candy”, like previews of different Power Sets, interviews about Nemesis and Omega system, and other very diabolic tools purely designed to increase the already cosmic hype about this digital entertainment creation. Stop doing that, Cryptic, or I’m sending you the bill of my psychological treatment.

Meanwhile, somewhere else in MMO-country, BioWare is starting to turn on the marketing machine for Star Wars: The Old Republic. With appearances on the PAX and the Gamescom (where I also will be, yay!), BioWare is hoping to increase attention for its newest product in the Old Republic timeline of Star Wars. Someone should phone their CEO and tell him that every sentient MMO-fan is already watching this product more carefully than his own child. Still, BioWare announced gameplay demo’s and the earlier named conventions, and I hope that there will be enough pods at the Gamescom, so I don’t have to stand in line behind some fat, stinking Star Wars freak who keeps reciting quotes from some secret DVD bonus content, just to impress all the other nerds in a ten yard radius, hoping a girl who digs his fetish will hear it and lay down with him beside their Midichlorian-powered fire, while I have to endure this all waiting for my turn to rip people apart with a lightsaber. If there’s a God, such a scenario will not happen.

Furthermore, my brother got bored of pew-pewing people as a vacuum-cleaner-gun-wearing bovine hero, and decided to pimp our Wii collection with Wii Sports Resorts and some new Wii MotionPlus stuff. I promise a review of the game at the end of this weekend, but from the short moments I’ve spent with it, I can tell you that bashing people with a foam sword was never so funny as in Sports Resorts.

And lastly, I’ve completed week 2 of the – program. Coming Sunday, I will do my first exhaustion test to see how far my tiny biceps has increased in kinetic force, and on what level the program will continue for me. Excitement abound, and you will read all about it here!

Well, that’s it for the Friday update. Make sure to come back next Sunday for the next update, and I wish you all a great weekend. Be careful on the alcohol!




[Athanatos] Desk jobs

He collapsed in her arms, just when he wanted to tell her how much he loved her. He wanted to tell her how he had already planned their entire future, how he wanted to marry her and take her far, far away. Far away from her drug-abusing father, her psychopath mom and her serial-killer brother. He had already arranged an apartment on the other side of the States, and their Mustang was packed and ready to leave. But if there is one thing I learned in about two-hundred years of service to the Grim Reaper, it’s that Fate is a bitch.

Four bullets pierced his back, and left through his chest. The love of his life was covered in the fluid that kept him alive. His once so sparkling green eyes turned pale, and his blushing red cheeks became white as snow. As he fell on his knees, holding on to the golden ring he wanted to hand her, his darling screamed out in despair and rage. I took a step back, and looked around. Then, I saw the gun blazing, held by that serial-killer brother. He had an insane smirk on his face, and his eyes were made out of the same fabric that gives birth to pure madness. But then, he saw the sadness and grief in the eyes of his own sister, and the insanity left his visage, just to make place for another kind of twisted emotion. Then, he moved the gun to his open mouth, and pulled the trigger. I almost forgot that I had to pick up two souls here. Thanks for reminding me, kid.

The air was now filled with the scent of blood, death and tragedy. Two dead bodies and a weeping girl set this most dramatic scene. In the distance, I could hear the sounds of police cars. I stepped closer to the shot boyfriend, and looked at the golden ring that lied on the cold cobblestones now. I kneeled down next to him, and sighed. Even after two-hundred years of picking up souls and bringing them to the Clockwork, I could not stop wondering about the wicked ways of Fate. This girl was now robbed of any chance of ever getting out of this miserable existence. If Fate had any mercy, it would have rather killed this poor lady instead of these two boys. But it was not my duty to judge about this. All I had to do is getting these poor suckers away from here. I took a deep breath, and did what had to be done.

Once again, I was very grateful for being an incorporeal being. Reaching into someone’s chest would otherwise turn into a very bloody mess, considering that tonight enough blood had already been shed. But I did not want to pull out some part of the human organism, I was reaching for something that only a few could see and feel: the soul. And there I had it, shaped like a small, white glowing diamond. It resonated in my palm, like it was begging me to be returned inside the warm shell of a mortal body. But its former husk was no longer warm. The last drops of blood dripped from the places where the bullets had left, and his skin was ice-cold. No going back for you, little soul. I grasped the crystal firmly in my hand, and walked over to the other corpse. In the mean time, the girl had taken hold of her dead lover, and held his stiff body in her arms, crying. I was doing my best to be touched by the view of it, but a lack of emotion made it quite hard to be compassionate.

I kneeled down next to the corpse of the brother, and stared at the hole in the back of his head. A clean shot, as far as giving yourself a “clean shot” is possible. I reached for the soul, and pulled it out of the chest. This shard was also vibrating and pulsing, afraid of its fate. I held the immortal diamond in my other hand, and turned around for a last time to look at the girl. The police and emergency doctors had arrived, and tried to take the corpse from the woman’s embrace. She screamed in agony and despair, and even I felt a sting in the place where I once had my heart. However, my work here was done. I got up, and left the cruel scene.

It is just another day in the life of an Athanatoi, an Immortal. Some might say that this job sucks pretty bad: seeing people die on a daily bases, picking up their souls and making sure they end up at the right place. But after two centuries of doing this job, I can’t imagine doing anything else, especially some kind of desk job in some cubicle. Imagine the horror that is paperwork and some boss breathing in your neck to make some kind of deadline…

The usual suspects

Most of you who watch the daily news heard about the gun rampage in Winnenden, Germany. Tim K. brought murder, blood and despair to his former high school, and took 15 innocent persons with him into death. A terrible incident that did not only shock family members and friends of the victims, but also the world.

Just a few hours after the incident, “experts” like police profilers, psychologists and pedagogues claimed to have figured out the motive of the killer. It didn’t surprise me that the usual motivations were named: depression, fear of the world, and a general dislike of the human race. But the more interesting question was, once again: what inspired Tim K?

Of course, our experts had the answers: his love for soft-air weapons, his membership in a gun club, and let us not forget the video games found on his computer’s harddrive. Enough proof for psychologists and politicians alike that Tim K. was a ticking time bomb, just waiting to blow. And again, we hear propaganda talk, trying to make us believe that banning certain pastimes is the way to prevent such tragic events.

Bullshit, ladies and gentlemen. B-U-L-L-S-H-I-T.

You won’t fix anything by regulating the soft-air weapons market, changing the laws for gun clubs or banning video gaming from this plane of existence. The only things you’ll take away then is the means of expressing frustration or anger, and by doing so, closing the only “civilized” valve these kids have to blow off some steam.

No, dear politicians, dear psychologists. To solve a problem, you must grasp it by the root. And the roots of this terrible evil lie in broken dreams and shattered hope. They lie in the fear of what’s to come, and having no sense of “orientation”. Many people find themselves alone in a world filled with so many dangers, and so much trouble. And when you have know one to rely on, no one who can carry your weight for just a few miles, you flee into the only refuge left: insanity.

Tim K. might have been such a boy. The press tells us he was a quiet kid, living in a wealthy family. He seemed to have friends, or at least contacts, in local sports clubs, and loved the time he spent in the gun club. But no one seemed to understand the meaning of the phrase “silent waters run deep”. Tim K. might have been one of those people who was, in the end, alone in this world. And we have seen how that went.

I hereby express my personal condolences towards the family and friends of not just Tim K., but also towards the relatives and friends of the victims of his terrible rampage. We can only hope that humans, after all, can learn from their mistakes.

Signed with respect,

Markus Schmidt a.k.a. Akinya

Two decades #2

Sooo, here we go with part two of my birthday wishlist, and this time it is….

Category 2: Books

I like to read. A lot. Books are something I enjoy before falling asleep at night, and if they’re about something good, they even steal precious minutes of my beauty sleep. Not that I need that so badly, seen my almost abnormally divine body…[statement followed by a hacking cough]. So, what books would really make my day when I found them on my desk / in my mail / on the breakfast table on February 19? These:

Tao of Jeet Kune Do by Bruce Lee

He knows how to pose...

A few months a go I got into Progressive Fighting System, a very modern fighting system based on efficient and reliable maneuvres in close-combat situations. It is a really interesting “sport”, and my trainer is a very passionate instructor. However, a big chunk of PFS relies on the creation of the very well-known Bruce Lee: Jeet Kune Do. The Way of the Intercepting Fist (that’s what Jeet Kune Do means) was the first fighting style to break with classical oriental tradition, and create a set of moves that are efficient and reliable in realistic situations. Also, Jeet Kune Do teaches its practictioners a certain state of mind, which helps them to stay cool during combat.

“Tao of Jeet Kune Do” is Bruce Lee’s attempt to write down his ideas, and clarify them with clean pictures. Even though Lee knows how to sound wise and intelligent, some of his explanations seem a bit weird and not to-the-point, which makes some part of this book hard to read. Still, I want to broaden my knowledge of Martial Arts in a theoretic way, and I think this book is a good start. Give, please!

Poker for Dummies by Richard D. Harroch and Lou Krieger

Hey, thats not Texas Hold Em!

Hey, that's not Texas Hold 'Em!

I’m not good in everything I do. Okay, I’m not good in many things, and poker is one of them. Somehow, everytime I sit down and play, people can read my like a Word document with font size 48 projected to the wall right in front of them. I’m just the worst bluffer in history, and also fail when it comes to the most basic tactics of Texas Hold ‘Em. I tried to read some of the poker literature my brother owns (for example, “Harrington on Hold ‘Em”), but these guys lose me after the first two lines.

Well, then it is a “for Dummies”-book to the rescue! I like the “for Dummies”-series: there is a book for each possible topic in that line, and every single day, someone writes a new book for it. Also, those I skimmed through explained everything in laymen’s terms, and so I guess that a “Poker for Dummies” is able to teach me the raw basics of good Poker. I don’t think I can rip the Euros out of my brother’s wallet after it, but I will at least look beter at the table. So if you want to help me save money, spend yours and get me this!

Das Kapital by Karl Marx

Its the beard, dude. Chicks go wild, I tell ya!

It's the beard, dude. Chicks go wild, I tell ya!

No, I’m not a born communist, or even a die-hard socialist if it comes to political orientation. But I’m a man who is interested in the history of politics, and this little red book is history banished into letters, words and sentences. Marx created the fundament for a new political movement, and his ideas influence politicians even now. Even though I will look like a Commy with this in my bookshelf, I would love to read it. And no, I won’t grow a beard like Marx…or will I?

So far about my wishes from the bibliophile’s corner. Come back later to check what I would love to get for my birthday when it comes to video games, as far as you’re interested!



Is it…possible?

Nooo, no big update…yet! I’ll do my best to pop something up tomorrow! In the mean time, enjoy the new President of the United States of America while “doin’ his thang”


The end draws near…

…at least that of 2008! Another year full of highlights and epic moments, not only in gaming. Let me use this post to look back on what happened in 2008, and how I experienced it. Also, I will take a look at what is to come in 2009. So, put away the fireworks and champagne, and read on!

Personal highlights

  • Meeting my sweet and fluffy raccoon, Eva. Okay, actually we met in 2007, but things got interesting in 2008. So I just count it as a highlight in 2008 😉 Anyways: you rock my world!
  • Mom had her 50th birthday, and now officially is “old”. But you shouldn’t tell her that in the face 😉
  • Two good friends of mine recovered from a very bad “state of mind”, and are now doing their best to stay strong and tall in a harsh and cruel world. You go, ladies!
  • Having the honor of still being in touch with people who made me who I am. To all of you: thanks for everything. You rock!

Role-playing highlights

  • Storytelling a really cool Vampire: the Requiem chronicle. I waited quite a while to play with this cool new system and setting, and as far as I can tell, my players enjoyed it. The end of the chronicle was to most of them quite surprising, in a very good way. Requiem is on my “play again”-list after this funny experience.
  • The release of D&D 4th Edition, and all the whine that it conjured. Seriously people, get over it! Nobody forces you to convert your 3.5 Forgotten Realms chronicle to 4th Edition. Wizards of the Coast is not the Gestapo, for the love of Mordenkainen…
  • The death of Gary Gygax, the father of tabletop role-playing. I wouldn’t call this a “highlight”, but I had to list it. Mr. Gygax, I salute you for creating my favorite hobby. Rest in peace…
  • Discovering how awesome “Call of Cthulhu” is. I think my troupe will “enjoy” a one-shot or two in 2009…

Gaming highlights

  • Finally got into “serious” raiding in World of Warcraft, and discovered how terrible funny it is. What was I doing the last 3,5 years?!
  • Wrath of the Lich King went live, and robbed me of many hours of sleep. However, I’m still enjoying it, even though Blizzard is walking a very dangerous path with their new “casual-friendly philosophy”. Be careful there…
  • Far Cry 2 was the first shooter since quite some time that knew how to fascinate me for a few hours. Breathtaking graphics, and free-roaming gameplay is just what I need. And it is set in Africa! Beat that, you boring World War 2 fragfests!
  • Super Smash Bros. Brawl is the best beat ’em up for parties. Ever. Trust me.

Sooo…these are my highlights of the last twelve months. But what am I waiting / hoping for in 2009? Well, let’s make a small list, and through the coming year I will keep you updated about how many of these things came to be 😉

  • Many good role-playing books will make their appearance in 2009. Just a few: World of Darkness – Inferno, Shadows in the Dark: Mekhet, and probably lots of other stuff!
  • The X-Men spin-off “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” comes to the cinemas on May 1st. I hope that they will NOT screw this one up! Hugh Jackman, please make this movie awesome!
  • Also, I will do my best to be a good officer of the casual raiding guild Invictus Sceptrum (Horde on EU Moonglade). Because, ya know, most of those wicked, crazy and somehow disturbing people are quite lovely 🙂
  • And finally, I hope that 2009 brings no great sadness and darkness to the lives of my family, my friends and me. But even if the tide turns, I know that they all would rather stand than kneel.

So, what else do I have to say? Well, I guess…

HAPPY 2009!

Be careful with the fireworks, don’t drink too much, and just watch your back. You never know who’s behind you 😉