Everyone! Get in here!

The weekend before last I went to my first Hearthstone Fireside gathering/tournament at Loading bar.  I wouldn’t consider myself to be particularly good at Hearthstone, I’ve played it a bit every month for almost two years now, but the lowest level I’ve reached is 14…  However, I’m competitive and it seemed like quite a nice way to spend an afternoon.

Needless to say, I didn’t last long.  I lost my first match 3 games to nothing and that was pretty much it.  This does, however betray my chances a bit as were it not for a really dumb mistake I probably could’ve won the second game, plus I comfortably won the friendly we played afterwards while waiting for the next round.

I played some other non-tournament games with some other people and it turns out Hearthstone is much more enjoyable to play when you can see your opponent, deliberating across the table.  It was actually a really fun afternoon (even given the trek to get there takes just over an hour), the only thing that could’ve made it better would’ve been if it was in an actual tavern, with roaring fires and stuff, so that’s the next big kickstarter project sorted…

LaSer Team

We went to the London showing of Rooster Teeth’s lazer team today, which was a hell of a lot of fun!  I was a little worried that the crowd was going to be unnecessarily loud and boisterous, especially given some weird cheers at some of the trailers. Luckily, it ended up being a pretty normal fan crowd, which are always great, “getting” more of the jokes and generally being quite cheerful.  It was incredibly funny with some fantastic moments and I was surprised by the quality of the story and how well it was paced too.  Definitely felt like a normal movie release with a decent budget, rather than a crowdfunded flick from a small time internet videos company. ;)

Unfortunately, I worry it might be difficult to recommend.  It felt like a lot of the biggest jokes relied on familiarity with Rooster Teeth’s other stuff, pretty much fan service if you will.  That being said, most weren’t “in-jokes” per say, just nods to other things that Rooster Teeth have done (the best joke of the movie in my opinion relying on it, but still being a beautiful setup regardless).  I would expect for anyone unfamiliar with Rooster Teeth it would fall under “Enjoyable Romp”.  The bigger recommendation would be to go and watch a bunch of Rooster Teeth’s other stuff first, because most of it is pretty good…

Custom Racesuits

So the new karting season is ust over a month away for me and I’ve been thinking about getting a new race suit.  My current one is looking a bit worse for wear, plus it’s kind of plain and boring.

I’ve been sketching out some potential far more interesting designs for getting a custom racesuit done and I’d be interested to what what people think.

First up, I’ve got a unique design that I’ve had in my head for ages.  It looks kind of red vs blue based, but that’s more of a happy coincidence.

RedBlue

Next is a somewhat Tron themed one

Tron

Then I’ve made an approximation of Samus’s Varia suit from Metroid
Samus

And finally, Blanka from Street Fighter

Blanka

I’m yet to decide which one I’d actually like to lose, so let me know what you think!

 

I’m surrounded by idiots…

We had our first proper Pathfinder (D&D) session last night, which was…rough.  It would be cliche to say that the dice hate us, but that’s pretty much it.  It was really good fun though

Our party of 4 woke up in a crypt, having been transported there mysteriously from our day to day lives, not previously knowing each other.  We got out of our various stone coffins, some with more ease than others (After everyone else struggling, despite having thee lowest strength, I basically threw the lid off and into the wall).  Our rogue (Eldred) went to check what was in the next room, rolled a 1 and alerted all of the skeletons, which then hit high and hard, disabling him before he was able to retaliate.

Despite my protests, both of the others ran forward down the corridor, giving me some accuracy issues (was rolling more than high enough to hit them unobstructed).  Before killing any of the 3 skeletons, one of the others (Andreas, a fighter elf) was also disabled, probably deserved given he was trying to attack skeletons with a spear… Just afterwards, I finally melted one of the skeletons with acid, giving us our first semi-success.

Given it was now 2v1 at close range, and our half-orc monk (Yu, that led to a lot of dumb jokes) still refused to back away, I summoned a humanoid shaped light to give another target (because skeletons are dumb). Yu finally rolled some hits and rolled top damage on each skeleton, completely disintegrating both of them, ending up 2HP away from leaving me as the last one standing…

To finish things off, I used some cheap tricks to make it look like Andreas had soiled his pants.  I’ve decided I’m going to be nice to people, but be increasingly derisive when they screw up :)

Mince Lies

So one of the few foods Toni doesn’t like, most of which seem to fall into “seasonal”, is Mince Pies.  To counter this, over the holidays I decided to try and come up with a mince pie recipe that she’d like, but still remained reasonably festive.  I present you, mince lies!

DSC_0076.JPG

Look like mince pies, don’t they?  Well, they pretty much are, it’s only the filling that’s a bit different.  Instead of a typical mincemeat recipe, I made my own filling, recipe below:

  • 3 Cooking Apples, chopped into 1cm cubes (ish)
  • 70g cranberries
  • 6 Stem Ginger Balls, grated roughly
  • 2 Tbsp Stem Ginger syrup
  • 2 Tsp Mixed Spice

Basically, chuck all of the ingredients in a pan, keep stirring and simmer until most of the apple turns to mush (you still want a couple of chunks leftover for texture though).  Then, use it like pretty much any other mincemeat, make (or buy) your pastry, add the filling and bake them.

Despite the main base being apple, these don’t taste like apple pies at all.  You get a very warm sensation from them due to the ginger and the overall experience is very mince pie like without having quite the same flavours.  Toni likes them, so mission accomplished!

Totem Time!

Finally got around to playing Triforce heroes today with Toni and another friend, which turned out to be gloriously dumb fun, as any good co-op game tends to be.  The story leaves a little to be desired, the most generous way of describing it would be a parody of other Zelda games, but it kind of works because it cuts through the rubbish and let’s you just play the co-op missions.

The main mechanic is picking other players up to gain height, but this leads to some issues on the dismounts, with people frequently ending up in lava, sometimes deliberately.  All hell really broke loose when we all got boomerangs, which can now pick up other players…

The bonus missions seemed properly difficult as well, with us making numerous attempts to complete the timed version of just the very first level.  The communication that we’d started to do so well at completely fell apart under pressure…

I’ve just been in a boxing match with a Tibetan monk

Had a bit of a busy end to the week at work with a couple of late nights, but all happy now, so that’s good.  I get to have a nice relaxing weekend now, which I didn’t get last week ;)

I’ve got a couple of things I’d still like to do, one of which is coming up with some kart racesuit ideas, I should post some of my ideas tomorrow or the day after.  The other thing is more baking, likely Toni-proof mince pies (it’s not too late!)

Finally, a couple of us have started a Pathfinder (like D&D) campaign at work. I shall play the roll of Brian (Blessed) the dwarf sorcer AND YOU SHALL FEAR MY FIREBALLS (NB: Dwarves do not have the stats to be good sorcerers…)

Chris runs stupidly far…

So I’ve got two big running events already lined up this year.  The first is Wings for Life World run on the 8th May.  Basically you start running, half an hour later a chaser car sets off and your race ends when the car overtakes you.  I’ve done it the past two years reaching 24km and 27km respectively.  This year, I’m looking at improving that further, but may be hindered by the other event.

Two weeks earlier the London Marathon is taking place, for which I’ve got a ballot place, yay!  The furthest I’ve done before is a little over half marathon (27km in wings for life involved a bit of walk-jog-walk-jog towards the end), so a full marathon will be a new challenge for me.

I’m intending to take the opportunity to raise some money, as it’s both two events I’m doing , plus I’m going a little further than normal.  My charity will be Wings for Life (spinal cord research), as I do think it’s a fantastic charity and Red Bull pays all the admin fees.  I haven’t set up a page yet, but I’ll probably do that soon…

Races and Games

So I’ve been starting to realise today that it’s only about a month and a half until the first kart race of the season.  Given I wanted to get some new, possibly customised, gear for the new season, that’s not very long to get myself sorted.

I’ve typically raced in black because that’s just what I’ve had available, but if I went for a customized suit I’d probably stick with it, but with lashing of bright red and blue.  It might end up looking red vs blue themeed, but that would actually be quite cool.  Another alternative would be one based off Blanka from street fighter

Also, I’ve up and made a page to keep track of games I’ve started, played and finished this year, although don’t expect any to be finished for a while.  If you want a look, you can find it here

And breathe…

Things are looking to be heading in the right direction for Toni’s final year project, so the atmosphere is a little more calm now.  I even have time to start writing this before midnight :)

I made a Quinoa Mac & Cheese (without the mac) last night, which was actually really nice.  Don’t be fooled by the use of quinoa, it’s not at all healthy, there’s still 50g cheese and 3 rashers of bacon per portion. Recipe is here if you’re interested, although I might make some as yet undecided tweaks when I make it in the future.

I’ve got quite a lot of recipes that I like making now, both sticking the original and with various modifications.  I’m not up for turning this into a food blog, but will almost certainly post some recipes from time to time (also, looking at the usual food blogs, I need to take tons of pictures of the food and have a long winding irrelevant anecdote about my 2 dogs)

~Chris

P.S. I don’t actually have any dogs

P.P.S.  I only wrote my name up there so I could do a P.S., how should P.Ss normally work on blogs?