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  1. 7 likes
    I am pleased to introduce my KT-MTG family to the newest member of my home family. Meet Winnie. Winnie is a 9 week old Comfort Doodle. Or "mongrel" as i prefer to call her. Her father is a Miniature Poodle (next one up from a toy poodle) and her mum is a Comfort Retriever which, i am given to understand is an American breed based on a golden retriever, but bred to be smaller. So, a Mini-Comfort-Golden-Doodle if you like. She has a lovely temperament - very friendly too all people (who generally seem convinced she's actually a living teddy bear, and i can see why). She's quiet, sleeps well, and shits pretty much everywhere, whenever she wants. Her and Fin have very quickly become inseparable; she's joined to his heels as he walks around the house.
  2. 7 likes
    Orlando was both anticipated and a surprise. I sought out loads of advice from folk in the uk. Florida is a major destination for the british and looking at the population maps shown by some rides, indicating the source countries of ride participants, UK was easily the 2nd most populous after the US, and even then, only 2-3 parts of the US beat the UK. The one key bit of advice that no-one thought to mention, was around Disney past passes. We had booked them to spread across the full day. We did not know that once you'd used your 3, you could then go and book more. So we couldn't book additional until the end of the day. Saying that... I suspect the parks were unnaturally quiet. They were busy, and we've nothing to compare our experiences too. But judging by queue lengths and what we'd been given to expect, we did well. Although US kids were on vacation, we took Fin out of school 2 weeks before the end of the year, and suspect that lack of UK holiday-makers made a big difference. With the exception of the 7 dwarves ride, which was 90 minutes (we didn't bother) the longest queues were under hour. Our longest was 55 mins. We did every ride we wanted to at least once, and some 2-3 times. Fins favourite ride was rip ride rocket. Just an intense roller coaster, into which i only barely fit. My two favourites were the Mummy, which was just very well produced and included several surprises, and probably the Gringotts ride - mostly because of the overall setting and experience. I found Diagon-alley the best part of the parks overall. It was just so well done. None of us are particular HP fans, and my wife in particular has now resolved to watch the movies with us, as a result. I was somewhat and relatively disappointed by Hogsmead. The school building was amazing, but the rest of the area, was only OK, and the rides not as good. Another favourite of us all, for a completely different reason, was the evening show at the Animal Kingdom, Rivers of Light. It was both lovely to watch and technically awesome. In quite a large lake, they control boats and floats full of light shows and actors. Both the floats, boats and shores had very powerful water-cannons that created a complex and huge array of water mists. On these mists the projected huge 3D images and film. It was quite magical. Other highlights were the Hulk coaster, and A mention should also go to the safari tour at the Animal Kingdom, which was well done. Fin loved it. There was a tendency towards the newer rides opting for simulators of several different types, some 3d, some imax. Some mixed coasters with simulators, with varying degrees of success. The fast and furious ride did this mix quite well. But we weren't blown away by any of it. I found myself comparing the experiences with what i can get on the rift at home and, apart from adding a sense of real motion, they were sometimes sub-par. Both Universal and Disney parks had failures to their central AC systems, which effectively closed the parks for half the day on each occasion. Storms also stopped the major rides from operating for several hours on two of the days, which then made all the other rides too busy to bother with. This would have been disappointing, but for the fact th by this point, we had all agreed we are not theme-park lovers. It was very hot, and very humid. In hit the mid 40's on a few days. Half of the queues had AC, a quarter just fans (some slightly better with misters)and a quarter neither. This should have been better. Often our favourite experiences were the slower tour-type rides, that took time to show and explain stuff. <I'll post some pics related to this post later.>
  3. 6 likes
    I've been debating whether or not I should make this post or just let things fall into place as they will. But I figure I've been pretty transparent up to this point, so why stop now? After I decided to make this post, then I had to decide what kind of tone it would have. Positive? Negative? Or just the facts? I'll go with facts. After all, I don't want to be this guy: Last year I changed the hosting plan for the website due to activity and traffic. To prevent any downtime, I had to get a bigger plan to support the demand. Since that time, demand has dropped pretty significantly. I'm lucky to have so many great people who support the site and the community, but to continue with the site we'll need to get more support. I'm not naive, I knew going into starting a forum that there were so many other places to consume and have conversations about MTG and gaming; but I thought there was an empty spot for a place without drama or toxicity for people to talk without trolls. Let's go over some statistics for new topics, posts and bandwidth usage: In other words, we have a hosting plan that is basically a private jet to transport people when we could be using a school bus. So, where does this leave us? A few months ago some very generous members donated to help cover some of the hosting costs. With their help, I just renewed the plan until the middle of October. If traffic and activity continue on the downward trend, some major changes will happen in October. Because of the cost and lack of traffic, I'll downgrade to a much smaller hosting plan. But to fit into a smaller plan, I'll eliminate anything extra the forum currently has to save space and bandwidth. This means we'll just have a forum, not the extras like videos, RSS feeds, downloads, and so on. The website will change domain names and will no longer have an MTG focus, but instead be a general gaming forum for whoever wants to stick around and keep in touch. I've been friends with the folks in the TGA usergroup for almost 15 years, so I'm not going to leave them or any of you and disappear overnight. We'll still have a forum, but drastically different. No topics or posts would be deleted, but everything will be moved around and consolidated. You might be asking yourself what you can do to help, well I'm glad you asked! Here's what we need: Be active on the forum! Make posts, reply to topics, add a blog or submit your videos. Share the site on social media. Even if it's just a quick mention, it really does help. If you're a content creator, give the site a mention. Even if it brings one person it's worth it! Tell your friends and your grandma about it. Submit some ideas you have to me about changes we could make, I'm always open to ideas. Not everything can be done, but it still helps to make improvements I may not think about. TLDR: The site doesn't have enough activity to justify costs, if activity doesn't improve the site will change drastically in less than 90 days. I appreciate all of you for your support, I hope this is just a valley we're going through that we will come out of; but I wanted to let everyone know the current status of the site. I didn't want it to be a surprise in October if everything changed overnight, and I can't do this alone - I need your help. Thanks again.
  4. 6 likes
  5. 6 likes
    For those of you who use Twitter - I don't know how you do it. The only time I use it is for FridayMTG and here and there through the week, but whenever I open the site I'm met with someone complaining about someone else doing something they don't like or don't think they should have been doing/done. And it's not civil conversations, it turns nasty and into some unhinged rants. It seems to be getting worse. How did everything get so toxic? I'm not even calling any one group of people out, it's almost everywhere you look. Whatever side people are on, there is just awful things being said about and to each other. Jeremy vs. Wedge, Jeremy vs. TCC, TCC vs. Alpha Investments, MTG Lion vs. whoever it is this week. Why does it matter? Who cares? What does this have to do with MTG? Why is does their ridiculous personal drama always seem to seep into everything online? If I were a non MTG player I would think most people who play this game are at the least unpleasant to be around. What's funny is whenever I play at my LGS or with friends 99% of the people there have no idea what's going on on Twitter, YouTube or in the so called 'community'. It makes me happy that the nonsense and drama hasn't really manifested itself here. Let's have fun, talk MTG and making each other miserable playing the game using cheap janky infinite combos or awful cards (even control), not online with insults and demands on how everyone else should prescribe to your way of thinking. Nobody fucking cares and the people who hang onto your every word are weak minded people who would believe almost anything. Think for yourself. Agree to disagree. Recognize not everyone believes what you believe or thinks what you think, and that's OK. Be a good person. Don't be an asshole. Help each other. Have fun playing this game and have fun playing it with people you enjoy being around.
  6. 5 likes
    Hey everyone! I'm John aka WarlordHank. I make some sub-par videos over on youtube and am fairly active on the twitters promoting other small content creators. I'm currently looking to find some friendly LGSs in the circle I hope to visit a bunch of stores that have a more casual crowd this coming winter. If any of you know one that might fit the bill, please let me know!
  7. 5 likes
    As we switch away from Dominaria standard into Core Set 2019 standard, I just wanted to take a quick second to say thank you to all of you for making Dominaria as special for me as it possibly could have been. When I was supposed to be studying during finals week, I took a break to make a quick YouTube video so that I could continue my streak of daily uploads. I came up with the idea for this video and expected it to get my usual 20-50 views. Now, less than 3 months later, the video has gotten 1000x more views than I had originally expected it to receive. Over 50,000 views in less than 3 months is ridiculous and I'm sure you all know just how thankful I truly am for this opportunity that I've been given. Most of you who spend time here on the forums were some of the first people to ever see this video. So, I just want to say thank you specifically to all of you for accepting me into the family and supporting me with my content creation. You all are incredible people and I will never truly be able to say thank you enough for how much you have positively impacted my life. <3 With that being said, one lucky video is no reason to stop. I'm going to keep working hard and making MTG content for everyone. Hopefully, one day, I'll be able to call back onto this post when I have another video that reaches 50k! Only time will tell, but I'm certainly going to do whatever I need to to make it happen! Thanks again! - Alby
  8. 5 likes
    Just over 2 weeks ago, I was thanking you all for 500 subscribers and now I'm at 1,000. I didn't think I'd ever hit this number, but we did it! I'm extremely thankful for the support that everyone has given me over my time on YouTube and the KitchenTableMTG Forums have been a big part of my success. I've been able to meet so many cool people through this site. I've been able to talk with and learn from other content creators here and have great discussions with others who enjoy MTG just as much as I do. The members of this website have been there for me for over a year now and I just want to sincerely say from the bottom of heart, thank you. <3
  9. 5 likes
    I hope you have a great weekend! This guy seems happy. This must be Peter Cottontails long lost cousin Peter Hammerdick.
  10. 4 likes
    My wife and I are on a low carb diet. Last night I told her I had cheated and had a donut for breakfast. Oddly, she only got upset about the pastry and didn’t seem to care that I’d slept with another woman.
  11. 4 likes
    I had previously made Call of Duty YouTube videos when I played competitive COD. After switching spending all of my time on COD to all of my time on Magic, I decided to create a new channel based on Magic. My initial goal was to get more subs on my MTG channel than on my old COD one. The old COD one had just over 220 and my MTG channel now has just over 2260, so I've achieved my goal! I think my love for this game is what keeps me motivated the most. This game has pretty much become my life at this point, but I'm having a ton of fun with it, so all is good!
  12. 4 likes
    A guy at the local game store told me he had a youtube channel so I checked it out and thought to myself, hey I can do that! So I did. I'll admit, my interest is waning in the creating content realm, but I do get excited about a new idea once in a while.
  13. 4 likes
    Fuck you, Fuck-ass. As a sport, it's low impact. As a casualty, it's very high impact. Very funny though.
  14. 4 likes
    No sugar, no carbs. ketogenic works. Other than that, every diet out there is the same damn thing, all that matters is compliance. Get yourself a calorie deficit and stick with it. Make it your new religion, not a temporary "diet" and time will get you where you want to be.
  15. 4 likes
    So I thought I would start this running blog/thread/record of my journey back into MTG and my attempts to get good at the game. I will mostly focus on standard as that is where I want to improve with the aim of attending a GP next year. Although my favourite formats are EDH and Pauper so that will show up as well. I plan on posting decklists, reports of how I am doing, practice progress and requests for help so please feel free to follow, comment and give advice. Hopefully I will post fairly regularly but I am with family and work I don't have much time for hobby and when I do have time spare I would rather play than write about it. Anyway, a bit of history. I first got into MTG a few years ago during Battle for Zendikar. I started playing on MTGO, attended pre-releases, a couple of FNM and some game days but I was very causal. Then my LGS closed and my head was turned by other games, Kings Of War, Age of Sigmar, Shadespire, etc and MTG got put aside. I still played online a bit but nothing serious. Then I moved jobs, there is now a store, well 3 actually, close to where I work and I thought now would be a good time to jump back into it. I signed up for a M19 league and last week managed to get 7 fantastic games in and came away with 3 wins and 4 losses, which when the only removal I had was one shock, I did far better than I thought. So I went away and decided that if I was going to go back into MTG then I would put some effort in and try get good. This will be my record of that journey. So that’s enough for this post, I am currently building a Standard deck and will post that list below in the next few days and then I can start practicing and playing standard again. Thanks for reading.
  16. 4 likes
  17. 4 likes
    Other observations: Points to note on affordability. Pretty much everything is more expensive in the US, than in the UK. Except petrol (Gas), which is about one third the price. In NYC we tried to buy Fin a standard size snickers, for which the chap wanted $5 - about £3.50. In the UK, you can get a pack of 4 standard snickers routinely for £1.00, around $1.40. So literally 10 times the price. Bottled water is 50% more. A bottle of Soda, was a real surprise, costing typically $2.99, twice what we'd pay in the UK. While eating out was more expensive, it is relatively less expensive than the UK - where shop ingredients might cost you 10% the cost of eating out. In the US, it might be 40% the cost of eating out, if you catch my drift. One thing that was good value was the clothing outlets in Orlando. We're not really the sort of folks to make that most of that, as none of us are fashion conscious (as i'm sure you can see), and we don't care about labels. Vacation accommodation varied loads. As you might expect, the cost for the 2 bed 3 bathroom resort townhouse, with hot tub and pool, was around £94 per night. The cost of the single room with 2 beds and one bathroom for 8 nights was £175 per night. This would be a similar case in the UK. So, if you want to visit the UK, as long as you don't drive loads, and plan to eat in a bit more, you should find the country very inexpensive. Culture of waste: Both of us noticed, really quickly, that the US has a culture of disposability. It seems that everywhere you go to eat or drink, you are given it in am abundance of things designed to be single use and thrown away. When you buy anything, it is always super-wrapped, then put in a bag, which goes in another bag. We saw very little recycling, except the occasional token gesture at segregated bins that everyone seemed to ignore. The people on checkout who do the packing put zero effort into minimising bag use, usually half the bags would have done, as they were packed so lightly, and double bagging anything resembling glass. We counted the carry-bags we threw out after 17 nights, and there were over 50. Buy some fries in restaurant? Get the fries on some tissue paper, in a cardboard boat, with a full complement of knives, forks and spoons made of black plastic, in a plastic bag, all on a sheet of paper, on a tray. The tray in reused. considering your culture of eating out, and how many of you there are, there has to be a change. I think the UK, as with most of the West is still terrible at this too, but even before the whole waste thing became an issue 20 years ago, we were never like you guys are now. If nothing else it must add a lot to the cost of food.
  18. 4 likes
    New york We spent 5 days in Manhattan about 15 years ago (Coincidentally, after visiting Mykhal from this forum, in SC.). TBH, i was so blown away by the architecture of the city at that time (not the new stuff, that's mostly shyte), i didn't really spend much time experiencing anything else. It was different this time. we spent 8 days there. In spite of staying in a Hilton, it was a massive downward tumble from our resort townhouse in Florida. I won't bang on about our accommodation, but just to say that a mini-fridge would have made a big difference. We stay in in eastern mid-town Manhattan, about 8 blocks north of ESB and 8 blocks south of Central Park, on Lexington, on the junction of about 4 different metro lines. I couldn't fault the neighbourhood for it's central location, although next time i think i'd go for something a bit more on the outskirts, in a more residential part of the city. We were directly opposite a big eatery/food court shared by around 10 different take-out outlets, a bar selling fab craft beers and seating if you wanted it. We eat out here in the evening, more then anywhere else really. We had a range of traditional diners within 2 blocks, which we enjoyed pretty much every morning. Fin and I enjoyed our pancakes, waffles and french toast most mornings, while Caren was usually disgustingly sensible. Portions were good and prices reasonable. Probably around 10% 15% more than UK when you factor in the tip. Both of those plates were part of his breakfast. One thing we did early on, that I would recommend for anyone on a tourist-tip, is the buy the 5 day bus pass from Top-view. You get two big guided loops of jump-on and off for North Manhattan and south Man. You get non stop tours of Harlem, the Bronx and Brooklyn. You get a 2 hour harbour ferry tour incl. SoL and you get 2 hours bike hire in CP. We paid just norht of $50 each, which i found to be a real bargain. We used that bus to just get around the city and only made two trips by subway. The ferry tour included some very interesting weather that had us imagining the end of the world was nigh. One day we got the bus to Battery park in the far south of the island, walked up to China Town for our evening meal and then walked back to the Hotel. This took an hour from the restaurant, and the hotel is about 1/3 up the island. You could probably do the whole of Manhattan in 4 hours walk - and it's a great way to see the city. Fin had asked me earlier that day why they were called skyscapers. On the long walk home we passed the ESB, whose top was disappearing into cloud. I point up and told Fin "That's why". He got it far better than my earlier explanation. NY Supermarkets are lovely places. They seem to have perfected the art of having a wider choice and higher quality, than you find in shops 10 times the size. We decided to have a picnic in CP after visiting one. We happened to find a spot, just in front of a covered seating area, where a group had decided to have their wedding. So our picnic was accompanied by a cello, violin and soprano ensemble, (and a cold can of Stone IPA). I must say, it was just lovely. Most of the 8 days, were doing typical touristy stuff like going up the ESB, which i won't bore you with. The only other day of note, was a Saturday, when we were on the way to pick up the bus from Time Square, which you cannot really get to without crossing the Avenue of the Americas. What we didn't know was on Saturdays there is a half mile long market lining both side of the avenue for the day. We quickly changed plans and spent a fab few hours soaking that in. I would recommend it to anyone in the area. My one bad experience. One day we tried something other than Starbucks for a break (my wife loves the almond croissant in Starbucks, but i wanted a change). We went to somewhere even posher (can't recall the name, something lie "Roast"). There were two service points, one marked for online pre-orders only, and the other marked for counter sales. I duly stood at the counter sales point for a few minutes, noting that there was no-one else there. All the time, other folk were being served at the "online sales only" point, for what i assumed was online sales. After 5 mins, I asked a gentleman who had just walked up. He told me that i should have been waiting in his queue. Another sales person turned up, and this same chap started putting his order in. I cut across explaining that i'd been there far longer. His response was "Yeah, but you're in the wrong queue". I just glared at him and continued giving my order to the person behind the counter. This chap kep grumbling under his breath. So i gave turned to him and said if it was so important to get ahead of me, then go ahead. He continued to grumble, but did nothing more. I informed the person on the desk that their signage was poor and misleading. They couldn't give a fuck. So i placed my order and waited at the pick up place, where I watched. The same chap who who served me, came out with 2 almond croissant. One he placed on a small plate, this was much darker, it looked almost burnt. The other on a plate, which he put on a tray, this looked pale, as they should. This was mine - i had other things in my order. The other 3 drinks i ordered too several minutes (icy frappucino stuff always takes an age). While waiting i watched a pretty young girl came up to get her croissant. She looked at hers, then looked at mine and talked to this guy behind the counter. He then swapped my light one for hers. Several minutes later, he completed my order. I went up to collect it. Put my hand on the croissant, which was clearly going to be cold, which it was. And i said, that's cold. The guy said he couldn't change it, because i'd touched. I said how would i know it was cold, without touching it. We had reached an impasse. He had to get the permission from his manager, who said just to re-heat it. I then said it was burned, and another argument ensued. I ended up just putting up with the burned, cold croissant, which i will confess i would rarely do - i'm usually well up for a fight. But i just wanted some peace. I wish i'd remembered to remind him that he's already swapped it for someone else, and i wish i'd remember the name of the coffee shop, so i could write a stinky review. This remains my only poor experience out of a month in the US.
  19. 4 likes
    I'll start at the end. At the start of our way home, we got the E train from Lexington and 43rd to Jamaica stn, to change for the AirTrain to JFK. It's really tough to get through the barriers with large cases and a small child. Some random young chap paid to let my wife through with his own ticket, then opened the service doors for us. Lady on the platform noticed our obvious British tourist-ness and confirmed (without being asked to do so) that we were on the right platform for JFK. Without realising it, i really appreciated that gesture. We got on the train. The driver was making some half-understood announcement about someone being sick at a station we had stopped at. Halfway between the next few stations, a lady sat next to me told me (again without being asked) that the train had to take a different route and wouldn't be going to JFK. She told us the station we had to get off, to get the train behind us. We were so grateful, as those facts had completely missed us, in the announcement. At the station before our new stop, the lady who had helped at the platform was leaving another carriage and stopped at our doors to tell us the same thing, that lady next to me had just said. On the 2nd train. a very pleasant young-ish chap in a suit struck up a lovely conversation about our travels. I appreciate this may all seem rather trivial, but at that time, with the stress of travelling and being responsible for ones family, to have all of that assistance, and especially as we didn't ask for it or expect it; it was offered with generosity and care. Both Caren and I were genuinely moved. I honestly do not think you would see that in the UK. I certainly haven't in all my years here. Not without exception (i'll get to that later), but, in general, we found Americans to be generous of spirit, pleasant and considerate, they seemed to be anxious but excited about the future, upbeat and not depressed. Caren, especially, noted how much she thought of the people we met and saw, and she is not at all given to offering such opinions usually. P.S. In Orlando I was slim and tall. In NY I was fat'n'short. A nation of contrasts.
  20. 4 likes
    I deleted mine in late June, and don't miss it. I was using it less and less. Here is what I wrote on my Facebooks: "Deleted my little-used twitter account and feel much better for it. It's a terrible place to have an actual conversation, and all people ever do is whine and cry about meaningless stuff. If the app disappeared off of the face of the planet, almost nothing of value would be lost." "Honest question: How would you make Twitter worth a damn? Anything you can get on twitter you can likely find on Facebook and Reddit. I have a few major hobbies and interests: Comedy, Politics, Hockey, Baseball, and Magic the Gathering…plus some video games and such. Comedy – Twitter is a poor platform for comedy, and most comedians don’t do much with twitter other than promote shows. The most active ones are screeching SJW’s (ala Sarah Silverman), who forgot what comedy is actually about. Nothing is worse than a comedian who becomes preachy and falls into the ‘Clapter’ trap. Sorry, another lazy joke about Donald Trump is not really worth reading (and another reason why The Daily Show and Bill Maher are worthless now). Podcasts are where it is at. Politics – Even worse nowadays. Nuance? Hah… Hockey – Infected by Church of Corsi, and/or shrieking SJW types. Again, hard to have any really good conversations on this platform. Livetweeting games is one of the dumbest, masturbatory things one can do. (I tried it once and….meh). Unfortunately, there really aren’t many places to talk hockey very well… reddit is garbage for conversations, HFBoards was never good, and blogs are pretty much dead or team circlejerks. Baseball – Actually not bad, but reddit has the same content. Magic the Gathering – The worst. The twitter community is vocal, whiny, and is pretty much in constant witch hunt mode. If you judged the playerbase simply by this minority of busybodies, you’d think every Magic player is a purple-haired trans feminist language policer, or that Hasbro/Wotc is evil incarnate. I deleted/muted a bunch of people and then was left with… not much. Facebook has its many flaws, but at least you can have discussions."
  21. 4 likes
    3 jacked up men vs 2 year old lion cub in tug of war.
  22. 4 likes
    Lets keep this subforum alive with a new video! Here is the Dominaria Prerelease Kit Opening, did we get anything good?
  23. 4 likes
    The Law of Unintended Consequences turns one of these ... ... into one of these ...
  24. 4 likes
    Well, not much of anything: https://magic.wizards.com/en/articles/archive/news/april-16-2018-banned-and-restricted-announcement-2018-04-16?ac As an observer of formats, the only real ban I'd want is Deathrite Shaman in Legacy...other than that, Modern and Standard seem to be healthy.
  25. 4 likes
    So you know that feeling when you've sunk £100's into some new tech, thinking it will be amazing, and it never turns out to be quite as good as you hoped? Well that was me until last Sat PM. I'd seen Lone Echo around for months. The reviews, it has to be said, were stellar (pun intended). But i've read stellar reviews before. The game has never dropped below £30.00. The fact that i wasn't prepared to risk £30 on a rift game yet, gives you some idea of what I thought of the risk of rift gaming right now. Several weeks back, there was some issue with the Oculus store and they gifted all users with cash, in my case £11. Last weekened, they took a few quid off the game, and i ended up committing £16 on it - the most i've spent on a Rift game to date. You play the role of a robot - a kind of semi-sentient humanoid maintenance robot. You start the game assisting Olivia, a human commander of the space station, parked adjacent to Saturns rings. Occupants of the large station are the Commander, you and host of other, slightly creepy maintenance bots. Some unexplained anomaly occurs on the surface of Saturn, and your commander decides to investigate, but you need to effect a range of repairs first. Movement is achieved well and comfortably, giving a great sense of freedom, while not inducing sickness. There is no gravity anywhere so far. You have small thrusters on your wrists, and can wear a jet propelled backpack from time to time, for faster movement. You can also pull yourself along walls and handles. All of your tools are accessible from your hands (cutter, quest and comms console, scanner) and your head (torch and mask). You tap areas of your wrists and the sides of your head to activate the functions. Whilst undertaking these repair tasks - which also involve leaving the station, jumping on a type of shuttle and visiting places dotted around the main ship, such as an asteroid, upon which a radiation shield has failed and other worker droids have malfunctioned - you witness other strange occurrences. This is about as far as i've got. It's a bit like participating in an isolationist sci fi movie, akin to Silent Running or Dark Star (without the Sarcasm). Plus I finally have my Holy Grail of immersion with this game. I had been playing for about 3 hours on Sat afternoon. I went down stairs to cook and stood by the island talking to my wife. When i had to move around the island for something, i swear i grabbed the surface to pull me forward, then remembered my legs work here, felt giddy whilst trying to get my legs working. This feeling stayed with me for about 10 minutes, while i adjusted to this new reality. Worth the £400 for the Rift, on this game alone (well, not quite perhaps).
  26. 3 likes
    Picked up this title last Friday and have been very casually playing it since. It managed to be the next shiny thing that drew me away from No Man's Sky ... however briefly. It's available over at GoG and at Steam for an easy price/value. Gameplay is often compared to Banished, but that is an overly simplistic comparison. They don't play the same, that is their strategies are not the same ... at all. Perhaps the biggest reason for the comparison is they're both survival games that use the Unity engine, and graphic styles/presentation are similar (but different). Generally reviews are mixed. Personally, I think many gamers these days are just whiners who don't have patience and who try to rush quickly through without considering the consequences or ramifications of their actions. This game is for thinkers and long-term planners. Those who are not in a rush will find it relaxing as well. If you rush too quickly to tech up, or to expand your population, you can set yourself up for a much greater challenge than if you had carefully considered whether and when to jump to the next era or even to build that extra tent/hut. Can you afford to do it? Do you have the infrastructure in place to support that choice? Some criticize that the game is too easy, but also complain that it is a pointless waste of time because there are no longer any animals to hunt, or that their tribe's members kill themselves trekking half-way across the map in winter without proper clothing. That's the thing ... the game is easy ... to recklessly paint yourself into a corner. You can either exhaust local supplies and forage further and further from your home, or you can carefully create a surplus of one of the many commodities and trade for items you need from the periodic traders that visit your village. You don't need to slaughter anything and everything that moves within sight of your camp, but you can. Just don't complain that there aren't any more animals to kill and you're running out of leather or hides when you could have been creating weapons, or logging renewable timber, and trading for those hides. Don't complain when you send your villagers off halfway across the map in the Fall when they're wearing their light clothing, and expect them to return in time before they succumb to hypothermia. Villagers have very small inventories (depending on gender and age) and they don't keep multiple changes of clothes (or weapons or tools) on their person; they store them in the village for use when they need them. The game can be brutal. Children who wander too far from camp may get eaten by predators hiding out in the woods. Said predators also prey upon local game, so it is wise to form up a hunting party to kill them to protect your game resources. Hint: herds of animals will renew as long as breeding pairs survive. But you have to consider whether you have sufficient technology and numbers of hunters to challenge that dangerous predator or prey animal (note to self: it is very hard to kill a mammoth, even one previously damaged, if all you have are little wooden sticks) I started one game and a few years into it, my village nearly went extinct after the one remaining Adult Female in the tribe was struck by lightning and killed. Yeah, bad luck for sure. Fortunately, a stroke of good luck came my way, and a small group of unaffiliated humans decided to join my village, thus adding at least one more Adult Female (and one Young Female) which then prolonged the tribe's ability to survive. For a while there, it was a total sausage-fest. I've since taken that village into the Bronze Age, and the current population is nearing 80 members strong. We've hunted and killed packs of Cave Lions, Wolves, and Cave Bears. We've also tamed wild horses, sheep and cattle for our domestic benefit. We now farm many, many fields of grain, have productive orchards, and farms growing a couple types of vegetables. We have BEER! We've staved off raiders from beyond our lands, and have undergone efforts to construct massive stone circles (e.g., like Stonehenge) to meet our tribe member's spiritual needs. I have one more era to improve and pass through ... the iron age. But I'm not in a rush to get there. I'm enjoying the journey thus far. That and I have a few more megalithic stones to drag back and complete our second stone circle. YMMV
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    No worries friend! Incontinence is a common problem in the elderly. We don't have to talk about it if you aren't comfortable.
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    Americans who get more than 2 weeks of vacation in a year? We have a big river cruise in Mid-April: Prague->Germany->Austria->Slovakia->Hungary
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    Big year for vacations as this will be the first time that I have ever left North America. Spending 8 days in Iceland: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1SjQuaECbjIruRluTr6IjZRVzlygLAz75&usp=sharing Spending 2 weeks in France (need to update some more, but you get the gist): https://drive.google.com/open?id=19EqJbw1TetZMvNe9zsW-vlzwrzm5EwhP&usp=sharing Few things have come together for us as a family to enable these trips. We've expanding our vacation budget as my son is a junior, so we only have a few more family vacations left. We have made a conscious decision to start seeing exploring the planet. And I've gotten better at stretching our vacation dollars.
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    Enjoying it a lot. Yeah, it's a little grindy, but that can be a good thing for mindless relaxation. Except, it isn't quite mindless at the same time. Hard to explain. You have to always be conscious of your inventory levels and empty inventory slots. There are more types of things than slots available ... until you get multiple hauler ships and exocraft, and until you expand your exosuit inventory ... but that's another story ... The early game is a challenge, and it can feel like you're flailing trying to keep your head above water. Mid-game is fun because there is so much to do. I haven't seen late game yet, so no word on how that will play out. I've got well over 60 hours in with many, many more to go, so I'd say at $30 price point there's good entertainment value. I've mentioned elsewhere here, that I can spend a lot of time, or just a little in-game, and still accomplish goals. So it isn't necessarily a tedious grind ... it's the busy kind. Later on, when you get a refiner, you can actually multiply materials by looping them through selected recipes (e.g., 2x -> 1y -> 4x, repeat). This cuts down on the need for roaming and gathering stuff, but also puts a bit of a squeeze on available inventory space. I dropped by tonight because I had to say goodbye to an old friend - my third fighter ship purchased with hard earned money from the early days (the first two were not very memorable or notable: the first was a free starter, and the second was a minor upgrade to the starter). This ship (shown below) is perhaps one of the coolest little fighters that I've seen in-game, was a class upgrade (i.e., from C to B), cost me a cool 1.35 million units, and I haven't seen another quite like it around the trading posts or space stations. Unfortunately it didn't have very many slots for inventory and tech upgrades (it had only 17+3). We downed a good number of pirates, that ship and I, and found multiple planets in multiple systems together. I kept it as long as I could until I finally acquired the max number of ships I can have (6), and had to pass it off in favor of another model (a shuttle, no less) with more available space.
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    @Aurian decided to make a Christmas sacher torte...mmm
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    20 pounds lost everyone! Thank you all for the tips!
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    I'm going to regret this (some of you live in Alaska), but i thought it might be nice to have a Tree-off. Let's post pictures of our Christmas trees. I'd like to get the ball rolling, but i can't. Turns out we're short on lights and can't get decorating until at least tomorrow. While waiting for the lights on the tree in the lounge, we have a smaller artificial tree in the kitchen. My wife started working on this on Sunday, and here is a picture of her efforts with the lights. Aren't i lucky she's a nice person. Because she can't dress trees for shit.
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    Any thoughts on kiteboarding? I hear it is pretty good exercise. Would you consider that low or high impact?
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    Good luck with that. I went from 320 lbs to 195 back in 2000-2001. I am back at 225 now, but I exercise regularly enough. (I am 6'5", for reference) It takes will power, but it can be done with a very basic changes 1. Cut out liquid calories. Sodas, juices...these are insidious and will easily add calories to your daily count. Learn to love water and/or tea/coffee. 2. Muscle burns calories. Even doing the basic lifts (deadlift, etc) will help the metabolism over time. Back injuries make it tough, but try to find exercises you can do...even push-ups from home during commercial breaks. 3. It is hard to re-start a routine, but once you get into it, it becomes easier to stick with it.
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    I think you'll find the field of science is riddled with them. Stem cell research ... STEM education initiative. 24 beers in a case; 24 hours in a day ... coincidence?
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    Hello all... My granddaughter always tells me: "Share, share, that's fair"..So, here's my "Share" for the day. The first booster box that I ever bought: Revised Highest price ever paid for a single card: $4.50 for a signed Alpha "Living Wall" (Bought back in 1994) Started my wall collection First starter deck purchased: Ice Age (Less than $5.00 back in the day) Most money ever paid for a single pack: $12 for a Beta booster Best trade ever made: Beta 2 BOP ,1 Beta Savannah & 1 Beta Armageddon for a 1 Beta Black lotus , 1 Alpha Wall of Water & 1 Beta Wall of Stone Favorite Card: "Beta" Icy (Best picture out of all the remakes) % of my collection that is still Near Mint condition: 90%( Most of the Alpha, Beta, and Revised) As I collected more in the beginning and started playing more heavily between 3rd and Ice age Total cards still owned: A lot.. If I were to guess, I'd say around 25,000 ish? Here are just a couple pictures:
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    Was curious if anyone has played EDH with hidden role cards? I’ve been working on a game like this all year that offers full art cards that remain hidden until you reveal them and the roles each unleash unique and fun abilities that can alter games. There are factions which offer hidden alliances, and twisted win-conditions (like winning a game by being the first to die). www.RegicideTheGame.com is where you can go to see all the roles/rules and to play for free.
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    My suspicion is under the patio. Oh wait, we're talking about the Lego, nevermind.
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    Here's a Goblin list I'm working on. Sometimes explosive, sometimes not. https://www.mtgvault.com/magonista/decks/red-earthquake-goblins/
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    Recap of our trip - San Francisco is a cool city. Very diverse, alive and so much to do. However, I am not sure if I will be back. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed it ... but everything is dirty. Nothing looks like it has been cleaned in a long time. Homeless are all over the place and its common to get a whiff of urine. Our hotel by union square was the perfect location to take in the city, however, we paid for it ... the room was VERY expensive. One highlight of mine was the food ... coffee and pastry at the farm market, clam chowder in a sourdough bread bowl, going to In-N-Out Burger for lunch (sorry, I like 5 guys better) and walking next door to Crispy Cream donuts for dessert ... then going to the Ghirardelli factory for chocolate. We were scheduled to leave on a Sunday morning, I walked about 1-2 miles to the rental car place through China town. Sunday morning walk through a major city is a fun experience to see everything. We packed up and went nowhere. Unbeknownst to us ... the SF marathon was going on which closed every East West street except 2. Turned out not to be a big deal, we just had to be patient. On the way to Yosemite, we stopped for lunch. My friend that I play Xbox with lives there. Our families got together, kicked back and enjoyed the company. Saw that Yosemite Valley is finally reopening today after being closed for 3 weeks. Several of the areas we went to during our trip were impacted by the fires. I know that sometimes the fires are necessary, but never the less, I hate seeing it. We did some hiking ... our first was the Upper Yosemite Falls hike. It was the toughest hike I have ever been on. Straight up, canyon to rim, gained 2000 ft of elevation in just over 3 miles all on a granite trail. To make it tougher, we experienced something of a rarity in Yosemite ... rain. it rained a little while we were on the top of the trail. It served to make the granite slick for the hike down, forcing you to secure every step over the entire length of the trail. It was absolutely beautiful. Glad we did it, won't be doing it again. Next day we hiked the 4 mile trail which is another canyon to rim hike that ends at Glacier Point. Also a tough hike, but not nearly as bad as the previous day. The views are spectacular. You could see Half Dome and Yosemite Falls. We had discussed doing the Half Dome hike, which requires a permit. We ultimately decided against it. On our way down we saw a chopper ... found out the next day someone died on Half Dome. They scaled it during the rain. You can see Half Dome in the first pic background ... and my son is at the age where he doesn't smile. From the valley, we went south to stay at our next stop. That area was (maybe is) closed due to the fires as well. We took a horse back ride My old man joints were beat and needed a day off. From there we went to Sequoia. I was simply in awe of the size and mass of the trees. To think that some of them were over 1000 years old when Christ was born is mind-blowing. Interestingly enough, almost every sequoia has fire damage. Some of them have extensive damage, yet continue to thrive. Mother nature designed them to withstand intense fires. We continued hiking. Here is me standing on Mt Baldy ... oh the irony. Did another hike in Sequoia, Lakes Trail. It was foggy, which obstructed some of the views. Speaking of fog ... we had lots of fog in Sequoia which dampened the panoramic views. Anyway, it was Memorial Day weekend when we did the lakes hike. We encountered something unexpected ... snow. We were hiking on it. So much snow that the last of the 4 lakes was inaccessible. That hike is why I love doing this, why I plan these trips and why I continue to desire to explore and see the world. Me and my family might as well have been the only 4 people on the planet. It was us and nature. We could hear the water falls, see animals, and explore to our hearts content. I spent about 10 minutes laying on the granite right beside the lake just relaxing. Did a cave tour which was really cool. When we got deep into the cave, the operator stopped and turned out the lights. The whole group was encouraged to sit in silence. It was darkness on a whole different scale. Couldn't see my hand in front of my face. If you have never been in a cave, it is an unworldly experience. Really gave me some perspective when we heard about those kids stuck there in Thailand. From there, we left the parks and drove to Santa Monica. On our way to SM, we stopped in Hollywood. One of the main goals was to find a good spot to take a pick of the Hollywood sign. Mission accomplished: I loved SM. Beach, shopping, the pier, good food, excellent people watching. Great place to kick back, relax, and and wrap up the trip. We loved California. Its such a great place full of diverse landscapes and great people. Everything was fantastic. Driving around the state, I can understand why there are so many fires. Darn near everything was brown. I was also struck by the number of farms. Acres and acres of tree farms, oranges, lemons, almonds ... all over occupying every square foot. Like Florida, its a great place to visit but I would not want to live there. Way to many people and traffic and congestion and everything is expensive. Again - I share because I enjoy seeing others trips and experiences and hope people enjoy the same.
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    So we're off to the US tomorrow. Staying overnight at a hotel near Gatwick Airport for an early start on Friday and a months parking for the car. We booked our fast passes with 5 days at Disney over the last few weeks. I think we got all the rides we wanted, although the newest Avatar ride passes weren't available for the first week, for some reason. We've booked to stay at the Loews Royal Pacific resort at Orlando for one night. It's expensive at around £350 per night, but gets you fast passes over two days, which would otherwise be nearly double that. The plan is that we go to Universal in the first few days and, if we get on the rides we want, we'll cancel the night at Loews. We have 4 days at Universal. We also have a day scheduled for Kennedy, and we're visiting Venice Beach for a day, hunting fossilised sharks teeth. I probably won't get much of a chance to post until early August, so enjoy the next month or so, ya hear.
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    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-Atr5w939A I'm working on a few tribal decks for when M19 comes out. Let me know what you think!
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    Haven't really been able to use the forum for various reasons or be able to create content but have a new series that my group (And The Geek Shall Inherit the Earth) are launching called "Decks From The Fringe", which is all about decks that go against the meta and tend to hold their own. Here's the first video but if you have any decks you'd like to see talked about, do let us know:
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    /tinfoil hat on It doesn't help when game devopers hire psychologists/psychiatrists to advise them on how to make their product more addicting to prolong subscriptions or to instill a desire for augmentations that could be fulfilled by conveniently available microtransactions. By formally declaring gaming disorder a mental condition (I'm loathe to call it an illness or disease, myself, and prefer to call it an addiction), will that curb adding addictive qualities during game development? Can or should medical licenses be removed or professionals censured for actively helping to develop an "illness" in the [gaming] community? Unethical people gonna unethic.
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    This set has gotten very little attention since WOTC wanted Dominaria to have the spotlight. Basically, it's a set designed for two-headed giant play, but can also be played/drafted normally. We had the land spoilers, but here are some cheeky partnering spoilers.
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    @King of Jank I'm happy about the Doubling Season reprint. The new art really sticks out from the older reprints with old artwork.
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    I have a lot of little things I like to complain about, like planeswalkers and how they warp the power level of the game, and the price of dual lands...because many people complain the variance in mana is the worst aspect of Magic and the only way to fix it is to pay through the nose With that said, one of the things that bothers me the most frequently is the focus on humans/humanoids in the game. I got into Magic because of the cool monsters, the dragons, demons, trolls, and goblins. I liked the idea of summoning an army of monsters and trying to defeat my opponent's monsters with them. However, non-humanoid creatures are now mostly relegated to vanilla creatures, and a large portion of "creatures" printed are just humans, or things close enough to humans likes Elves/Kor/Vedalken. If I had it my way, the humans would be printed as vanilla creatures like they USED to be, and all the cool, powerful, rare-slot creatures would be cool monster-things!
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    Its pretty standard for an app to ask for call and text access among other things. You never know what they are doing with that information. Hopefully this brings a lot of this out and there are some changes made. I find it odd how this is being reported. I keep hearing the media use the term data breach. It is NOT a data breach. It was data that was freely given and access was consented to. It doesn't make it right, but the inaccuracy of what is being reported is scary too. And the analytic piece of it was a survey that was taken within Facebook. Again, people gave that 3rd party permission to receive all of that data. Not saying its right ... but its definitely not a data breach.