2012 News

New Years Eve: Plans to go out somewhere kind of got put off, but then we went out somewhere else instead. Drinks to see the New year in, and I have to add that my missus was given a paper lantern at the house party we were at, and in all the music didnt quite hear what she was supposed to do with it. I knew what it was, and when I asked her, she said she wrote down 'love from me and her'. I stiffled a laugh and took her out into the garden where the couple lit the candles underneath and let it float up into the night before telling her that it was a memorial for those that had passed....she was mortified obviously, and I took the piss all the way home in the car.

Christmas Day: Santa has been and gone, and I am as full as the full dustbin you dont want to take out as its raining and so you pull up the sides and cram it down to try and fit more into it. So I am, eating peanuts and cheese and biscuits. I got the usual smellies, a new Kindle and some books and am very pleased with my haul. Merry Christmas to you all!

Monday 24th Dec: I did a fatherly deed by taking my daughter to a closer bus stop (meaning she avoided getting two buses) for her work but in reality, timed it to coincide with grabbing myself a Maccy D's Double Sausage and Egg McMuffin. I still don't know why they don't serve them all the time, and would happily join any political party that had this on their manifesto....

Merry Christmas Dad.

Sunday 23rd: Well my "..nothing planned in the last few days to Chrimblemass but to lay in bed, watch TV and finish off building another PC." was quickly screwed up and thrown in the bin as the Missus mate cannot make it to Camden Market as it's suddenly my fault as such. I struggle valiantly to get out of bed after last nights party, and consoled myself by buying a comic box and another Ultimates Graphic Novel, plus the Chinese Sweet and Sour Chicken and Black Bean and Noodles from the market was lovely. I continued with the PC build, downloaded the best part of 40gb of Battlefield on my 'spare' Internet and then accidentally played Torchlight II until 4am.

Saturday 22nd Dec: A few last minute things for Chrimblemass all completed more or less, meanind that I am surprisingly organised while simaltaniously in full wind down mode. Party later, then a few days of bugger all......

Thursday 20th December: Chapter 25 is up: "Make way for Harold Lloyd (A pair of glasses and a smile)"

Wednesday 19th December: Just worked out that in the last two months or so, I have picked up the following games. Staggering, simply for the fact that I didnt think I needed that many, and what the bloody hell is left for Christmas?

  • X-COM - £22 - (discount code from GMG)
  • CIV V - £0 - (Free with above)
  • Sleeping Dogs - £10 - (AVF Classifieds)
  • Ghost Recon - £5 - (Play?)
  • Dishonored - £22 - (AVF Classifieds)
  • Magic 2013 and all DLC packs - £6 - (50% off in Steam daily deals)
  • Far Cry 3 - £12 - (AVF Classifieds)
  • Orcs Must Die 2 - £4 - (Share Pack in Steam Sale)
  • Metro, Darksiders and Saints Row - £5 - (THQ Bundle)
  • Risen 2: Dark Waters - £4.95 - (GMG Sale)
  • Batman Arkham City: GOY - £3.75 - (GMG Sale)
  • Hitman Absolution - £Christmas Pressie
  • Assassins Creed 3 - £Free
  • Borderlands 2 - £Free
  • Sniper Elite 2 - £Christmas Pressie

Sunday 16th December: At DnD today and Played the session that will become Chapter 38, provisionally entitled, "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead, but which old witch?" Tune in to this website in, oooo, April 2014 to read more......nearly finished Chapter 25, honest!

Saturday 15th December: Christmas at Mums, and loads of food, silly games and pressies. I got a bumper pack that included one of the George Martin Slipcase editions, some graphic Novels, the Avengers on Bluray, and a lovely shirt. All hand picked by me obviously.

Friday 14th December: Picked up my Kindle PaperWhite today, Huzzah! Got to play with it for all of five minutes before it was put back in the box sadly, but it looked very good indeed.

Thursday 13th December: Hobbit day at the IMAX with my daughter. Altogether now.....hi ho, hi ho......it was brilliant obviosuly, but the 3D was just a bit, well, meh to be honest. It went from staggeringly good, to 2D popup foreground, to some judderry panning shots to ok, to non existant - it just did not stay constant throughout, and not even constant through the 3D bits either. Personaly, I could have done without it. Films brilliant though, and plenty of thigh slapping moments, and "Come on the Dwarves!" shouted out that got my Daughter saying "DaaaaaaaaaaaaD!" through gritted teeth.

Wednesday 12th December: A quick round up as per 7pm shows my playing time (comparing against the images taken on the 6th):

  • Battlefield 3 +5 hrs
  • Gothic 3 FG +4 hrs
  • Torchlight II +4hrs

Which does equate to 2hrs a day average so far.

For anyone thinking, blimey, those are some pretty low overall playtimes, I thought you were on the 'puter for AGES!, bear this in mind:

Dragon Age, Titan Quest and Battlefield Bad Company 2 are not recorded on steam and at a rough estimate, I reckon a minimum of 500hrs are not recorded - 120hrs for DA, 150+ for TQ, and 210 for BFBC2.

Tuesday 11th December: Got that thing I was looking for in the end and although I was playing it cool and saying "..yeah yeah got aaaaagggggeeseesssss yet!" I was having some squeaky bum moments. Eventually a website stock scraper with an extremely loud alarm that played when stock of your item came in blasted into my ears as I played Torchlight II and soothed my clenched (and yet perfectly formed) buttocks.

I of course will claim that Karma played a huge part in finally obtaining it, although the karma I earned by deflecting the baying mob trying to get on the tube this morning to enable a heavily pregnant lady get on was nearly wiped out by her tripping over my static foot. Thankfully her bulk had not hampered her dexterity score, and she shot out an arm to catch the side and everything was ok.

Sunday 9th December: Gave my pensioner (god she's not reading this is she? She will clip me round the ear if she is) Mum her iPad and showed her a few things. I also declared today my 'first day of Christmas' as Wham's Last Christmas played on the radio for the first time in my presence.

6th December: Just a few images from my Steam and Origin catalogue (listed by Hours played) to see exactly how long I actually mannaged to play games over the December and the Christmas period. Its got to be a minimum of 60hrs (2hrs/day) distributed among the games, but which ones? I think my last day of my holidays is the 6th of Jan, so I will update this again then. There are 29 games listed overall.

30th November: I didnt win the Daredevil obviously - which is good as I had less disposable cash than I thought anyway, and SCCM watched machines are all plodding along nicely, albeit sparidically. While I have pretty much finished installing CS6 to the Macs watched by ARD, its not all sweetness and light, machines can fail half way through meaning I have had to log on to every Mac anyway, and the machines need to be logged off. SCCM may still be a pain in the arse, but so far it has rolled out silently, and there are no problems with those that it said it has installed.

29th November: A third bus has come along and by that I mean another Daredevil No 1, and despite the fact that I should not be bidding I obviously am. Even stupid me is aware of the proximity to chrimblemass, so I have no real designs on it, instead hoping to beat those who are similarly strapped for disposable cash over this period.

SCCM is going well, and my analogy of building a bridge from both ends but wondering how I am supposed to fit the middle bit in was whittled down as I got closer and closer to completion - a tick box missed here, a setting there, it all started to make more and more sense. A setting for the server to show that the client was installed, when clearly it was, was my last obstacle, and just before I left work, another edited setting allowed me to shout a little "yes!" As I logged onto a client and a little window popped up to say "program waiting to install". Hopefully when I get in tomorrow my test machines will all be installed.....

28th November: It's not what's you know, it's what's you watch for some bloke on the tube this morning who was watching Arrested Development on his iPhone. I watched a watermark that filled the screen with the ripping software's name in big white letters appear every (and i am not exaggerating) 15 seconds and I was watching over his shoulder. I tapped him as I got off and told him to use handbrake to re-rip his DVDs - free, and no bloody watermarks.

A whole day of SCCM and CS6 deployment that made my eyes bleed, and I do feel like I have built a bridge with no middle bit, as client and server seem fine but confusingly (based on the factt hat the server pushed out the client) the server cannot push the CS6 package.

Some tidying up at home revealed my odd sock pile had 2 pairs and 21 odd socks. How I have built up more than Twenty one odd socks is a little worrying and I blame the Missus.

I configured my Mums new iPad and I realise that I have a shocking amount of apps as they are more than 10gb over her 16gb iPad's limit, and so some drastic culling is performed. Good job she doesnt read comics, there would have been even more to cull...

27th November: And to the counterary, the Apple Remote Desktop was a piece of urine and while waiting for something to happen in SCCM, ARD had happily installed CS6 on two test machines. It's not all roses as some have not installed when I tied batch too many at once and so I need to watch them.

Today marks my fifth working day on the trot that I have walked up the stairs (Northern line so 120+ steps that are very steep) and today I got up five blocks of stairs in a running gait before the sixth caused me to walk normally. Out of breath obviously and knees trembling, but far better than 'day one' only last week.

26th November: I am currently wrapping my head around SCCM, a software manager for Microsoft that allows packages to be pushed out much like a GPO pushes MSI's. it's taken a couple of days now and has been a struggle as I also have to try and work out SQL as well, well a minimal amount anyway to get the manager to install in the first place. It's installed properly though now, and although I went on and wrapped a CS6 package ready for distribution, it seems to deliberately not want to integrate AD for an easy solution to rollout.

25th November: You know that expression, "...like busses, nothing for ages, then two come along at once!"? Well I never thought I would be applying that when talking about a 1st edition Daredevil No 1 (1964). This happened over the last few days, one starting with ten days that I have been watching and getting ready to bid on, then another that started on a shorter 3 day listing, meaning that they both finished within 24hrs of each other.

The first had 25+ bidders and had reached £155 with a few hours to go, while the second one was at around £30 with only 3 bidders. I had the cash to go more than £155 but thought I had a better chance of laying a large bid on the one that was only £30.

Both Daredevils were VG/Fn condition, with the second looking a little better - but the only catch was that the second buyer had zero feedback. I emailed the second DD for more pics, got those back, and even advised the seller that the sale would pickup as it had stayed at £10 for a day.

The first DD was coming close to ending, I am twitching to bid and ready to lump £200+ down, when I switch, whacking a 'sample bid' of £120 on the second DD, becoming the highest bidder with £102 and 15hrs to go. The first DD ends with a winning bid of around £180, but a few hours later, I get an email that informs me that my bid on the second DD was cancelled and the listing removed.

I contact the seller, slightly miffed but restrained, and basically am told that it was not getting the attention they wanted, so pulled it.

I did not bid on a No 3 Daredevil for about £40 in VG/FN condition that ended before both DD 1's so I had an extra £40 to play with, and did not bid on the 1st one with a high (affordable) bid that I could have potentially (dependant on what the high bidder stuck in obviously), so was a combination of absolutely gutted and fucking furious.

So, the moral of this is a) Dont try too hard for a potential bargin, as you may let slip through a guarenteed bargin b) 0 feedback sellers should be avoided when selling Daredevil comics.

Cynical me also wonders if a potential buyer of the 1st stuck up a second to misdirect bids to that to guarentee a good price....

24th November: A continuation of Black Friday shopping, or should that be blue Saturday? One present has proved annoyingly difficult to find for Christmas through rarity and age but I still have 30+ shopping days to find it for the person. I spent the afternoon in the pedestrian Oxford street, christmas songs and cheer slightly muted by the greyness of the afternoon and the rain gave me a little gay head cold that made me all shivery and need me to go to bed early.

23rd November: Randomly got a call from my Mum "...I am thinking of buying an iPad..." which then turned into me, a few hours later taking advantage of the Black Friday deals and walking out of John Lewis with a brand new retina display 16Gb Wifi iPad.

The day was not complete however, and I also picked up my preordered slipcase editions of the Game of Thrones books (Vol 2 and 3) and man they are awesome. If I had a badger to test it on, I would have certainly tested that well known expression, "...big enough to choke a badger."

21st November: A few things arriving in the post in the next few days, its like Christmas, and I cant think of the last time I had so many things pending.

  • Some 1976 Daredevils
  • Some 1974 Daredevils
  • My latest Comic Sub (inc the latest Death of a Family)
  • White extension cables for my new GPU
  • Old Boy Blu-Ray
  • A Lego Gollum
  • HP SCSI 146Gb Hot swap hard drive for work
  • The Missus new phone
  • The resending of some Magic cards from the US that went missing in the post and the cards they sent to replace the missing ones were sent over two weeks ago...
  • Pick up of my Game of Thrones series Slipcase Hardbacks
  • Pick up my sketched Walking Dead Vol 17 Graphic Novel

And with another month passing with little to no wonderously funny or intelligent quips, it seems I wont meet the target that I failed to mention or even thought about until now of equalling or surpassing the 135 pointless posts I made last year. I would need to post EVERY day from now onwards to be in with a chance, and then sneakily add about 4, possibly 5 'back' posts (obviously pretending they were there all along) to be in the running. Hmmmm............

13th November: Huzzah! The Intermaweb faires came to my house and sprinkled it with increased download speeds. I am now on Virgin, rocking a 60Mb connection.

12th November: Updated my PC a little, and failed to mention it to you, my adoring fans - I am contemplating setting up my own Twitter like website (Bois' Bites has a good ring to it), and it may even double my readership to two (animals count dont they?)

Anyway, you can read all about it, here.

31st October: Happy Halloween, and have a 'chapter that I should have posted months ago and didnt' on me. Its Not a Unicorn! That equals the poor record of four chapters released that I did last year, when my target should be 6 really. So, I need to crack on and get four out by the end of this year to make up for this year and last!

26th September: No updates for the best part of a month? What the bloody hell is going on?

  • Tooth removed as I finally "..could stands it no more!"
  • Phone back after two weeks of being off
  • Internet back after being off for nearly a month
  • Played Magic with Mike with proper cards which then caused me to buy MTG cards which I have not done for the best part of 2 years
  • New iPhone out, and not a day one purchase due to having a contract up for renewal at the end of October

30th August: My Internet has been down all weekend and when they rang me back to fix it, they had actually managed to break my phone line as well. My tooth is still giving me grief - but crucially not to the point where I must go to the dentist, and to add some good cheer to this entry, I found out that Arrested Development (with the original cast no less!) has gone back to filming for a fourth season AND there are rumours that Benerdict Cumberhatch (who is confirmed as a baddie in Star Trek II) is to play Khan.....

21st August: Just to prove that although I have had time to muck about on the forums over the summer holidays, I have actually done the following:

Staff Leavers

  • Old Profiles moved or deleted.
  • User Drives (H:) Archived
  • Accounts Disabled.

New Staff

  • New Accounts created
  • Email accounts created

Tera Stations

  • Consolidated all archive data to one device. This RAID 5 terastation, now contains 1.5+ TB of archived data.
  • Wiped and setup RAID 5 on all unused Terastations.
  • Fixed repairable Terastations
  • Relocated main TS's 'offsite'

Student Accounts

  • Student Accounts Migrated (moving from Year x to Year y and KSx to KSy) – This covers permissions for files and access to areas.
  • Year 7 student accounts all created.
  • 6th Form accounts
  • Created documention for more a detailed guide as the above does not show properly the extent of the work done.

Servers

  • Windows Updates applied to 10 servers
  • Fixed backup Jobs as required
  • Symantec Backup updates run
  • Relocatied user profiles from one server to another
  • Created a new Virtual Server then cloned some existing servers and now have web proxy and WSUS running as virtual machines.

Windows 7

Trashed my machine and installed Windows 7 64 bit Pro and Office 2013 beta, which has been running all summer for me to get used to the things such as AD and Domain based security that I would never use at home.

Internet Explorer 8

Properly rolled out now, found the troublesome update within WSUS and deleted it to force a refresh to apply 8 after it had been stopped.

Domain

• Tidied up AD
• Amended student and teacher login scripts for quicker login times

And last but not least, with the help of my comrade in arms, dismantled three rooms of PCs (87 machines) and then installed three rooms of PCs, and locked them all down.

20th August: Lots and lots of humping boxes as we get some new PCs, and the old ones help us provide our own breakfix warranty solution, and then a load of Apple (a clutch? A bunch? A forest?) iMacs rock up as well. I am back playing BF3, working on my assignment tasks which I love, and force me to use weapons and kits I dont normally do, such as the Recon class. Nearly finished one of them, and as long as I stop trying to run off and instead hunker down and dont move, I should be fine....

12th August: Well the Olympics have finished and normally I would say something flippant and comment on all the extra people that caused me grief coming to work and going home again, but you know what, it didnt happen. I did leave early for work, but once or twice I was left normally rather than an hour beforehand, and coming home I only had one or two problems and at least one, and possibly both times were related to the tubes themselves, rather than excessive people. As for the Olympics, well, it was just brilliant. I was one of those that had no empathy whatsoever with it all beforehand, but once it got going, was rivitted to the screen pretty much all fortnight.

Well done to the whole of Team GB!

7th August: We all know that sex sells and its really wrong of people to degrade women by putting them in seductive posses on adverts from cars to buying bannana's from Sainsbury's. The practice of using women in TFTs has been happening for ages and I will just say that it doesnt work people! Not every geek watches either pr0n or plays games and you need to find a new way to do this to get people to buy......your........product.....

Wow.

A stunning TFT from Acer and its how much? Let me order two of those bad boys......

6th August: A little spell checking and tidying up caused me to look again at the post I made a few days back regarding my HTPC, and I actually missed a post from the 2009 thread that mentioned scouring the registry, so I will try that tonight......hmmm, or now actually, seeing as I have logmein. And what do you know, it bloody worked. I can obviously see from here if the display is working, so I still need to wait until I get home, but removing the entries from the registry allowed me to open the minidisplay configuration that had eluded me for so bloody long.

All of this, just to have the LCD display on the front of my HTPC faintly display something that I cant read because the LCD is a bit crap really, and not bright enough, or rather does not have the contrast to show the information properly from any kind of reasonable distance....hmm. Now I know why I wasn't all that bothered to get it up and running.....

5th August: I had a brief three days holiday (and the weekend), so continuing from my other little micro blog slices of meaningless triviliaty, what did I do?

  • Surprisingly, not a lot of computer played at all, although I did have a good crack on Max Payne 3
  • Finished off watching Season 4 of the Mentalist and also a very early episode as some one mentioned on the forums about Red John possibly being in it
  • Slept lots. Plenty of cat naps to annoy the missus.
  • Watched far more of the Olympics than I thought i would, especially on Saturday watching 5 of the 6 gold medals won that day, then the Tennis and the 100mtrs final and loads of other crap on Sunday.
  • Watched the last 6+ episodes of The Office Season 7 and then some of the eighth season
  • Fixed a laptop
  • Made, well built a bed
  • Finally watched the last of the Event, then realised I had already watched it....but any excuse to watch the gorgeous black haired assassin lady again.
  • Finally shaved about 10 days of fuzz off my face
  • Watched Dark Knight on Bluray (again) gearing myself up for Dark Knight Rises on Tuesday at the iMax.
  • Started to watch the last few episodes of No Ordinary Family - a precursor to Alphas kind of? I liked it, and was sad to see it cancelled.

That list makes it look like I have done loads while in actual fact I have been mostly sitting on my arse watching TV. I love lists.

2nd August: There should also be a word or expression that signifies that moment when you are searching for the solution to a problem on the net and then find that someone has the exact same problem as you read through the posts, eager to find the solution, you then realise it was you that was asking the problem in the first place.......

It could have been worse I suppose, I could have been the one that offered the solution in the first place.

In all fairness to me, a) I wasn't the original poster of the thread, I just chimed in saying 'me too' further into the thread, b) it was something from 3 years ago that I still havent sorted out, 3) my username on the forum although the same was not accompanied by any of the avatars I use.

Oh well, any excuse to reinstall the OS on my HTPC, as I had planned to treat my gaming PC to a new larger SSD and moving the 60Gb one to the HTPC. Thats what you call win win! Well, more a Draw, Win! but still.

1st August: I really feel that there should be a word to cover that feeling you get when you bid on something on eBay that you are a little unsure of if you wanted to win, but then feel totally gutted that you were outbid by a quid. How about disebaypointed? And yes, it was another book.

31st July: I did a little work on the front portal page today, changing the random picture of a castle I found to a picture of a ruined 'castle' (well, monestry actually) that I took myself.

Before:

After:

........happy with that.

Also I have been mucking about with my HTPC again and yesterday found a neat little remote control for MediaPortal and the iPhone called Couch Potato, which gives you the interface as shown below, while also being a bit more response than my actual remote (more of a design feature of the case and its IR reciever methinks to be fair.

During playback, if you pres the little 'i' you can pull up info on what you are watching as well, which is very smart, although I have spotted the irony of getting info on the thing you are currently watching and therefore should be aware of said info rather than checking info on a fim/TV show before you watch it. Just accept its good and move on.

While the ultimate remote would obviously be something like a touch screen version of the MediaPortal GUI (something MyMovies remote does for approx $100 - CP was £2.49 for reference) this is a good start and it seem like they are still working on changes and improvements. The fact that it recognises my setup and I can flick between plugins such as BluRayPalyer, MyTVSeries and Moving Pictures is a bloody good start though, and the info pages above are glimpses of what could come and the reason why people do have HTPCs over boxes such as the WD Live in the first place.

Not that I am not thinking of grabbing a WD Live anyway, as it looks like a solid piece of kit for £66.....

29th July: The Olympic games are underway and the TV is full of extra channels dedicated to the various sports. I found the Beach Volleyball channel and settled down with a special splashback guard (think of that thing that the girls on the Apprentice made for kids in the bath) some lotion and full box of mansized tissues, only to find that it was Mens volleyball. Oh well, shame to waste my setup....

28th July: I had a retro PC Gaming day today as I partied like it was 1994, XCOM Enemy Unknown burning in my blood. So I played UFO: Exteresstials Gold that I had barely used since buying many moons ago, and (admitidly I did put it on hard) it was ROCK hard. I had lost two men before I had even left the first troop carrier. I 'soldiered' on, but then restarted and turned it to normal instead and got cracking. The interface is not very helpful at all, and so I ended up not knowing about overwatch points and research was a little confusing from how I remembered the XCOM games.

I carried on for an hour or so, but then remembered I had Kickstarted a XCOM clone Xenonauts and that had a demo available - Alpha build. So I fired that up, and despite its retroness, it brought back all the right feelings about XCOM. I played the demo for about three hours (only one tile set really so things started repeating) and was very very impressed and cant wait for its release. The Alpha is free to try and I recomend it.

Still hyped up on shooting aliens in a turn by turn enviroment, I started looking at newer versions of the XCOM or UFO family, and found Afterlight. Mixed reviews, but seemingly updated and allowing more control over builds (I found that the UFO: EG limited scientist purchases and other things which is what confused me) and so handily, an Indie bundle contained the game for $7 rather than paying £8 for the game. While that downloaded, I found a mod for UFO:EG that made things that much better, and so have installed that, then played about an hour or so of it again, starting from scratch, and it was that much better. Still bloody rock hard though!

25th July: My inner and outer geek did little high 5's to each other as I worked on my Excel spreadsheet to extract AD usernames from First and Surnames. It got even more congratulatory with pats on the back and pumping handshakes when the '=Concatenate()' - a new command to me, brought my script together without the need to export to notepad and do find and replace searches on sections with spaces to remove said spaces to get the script to work.

The Excel spreadsheet now simply needs the First and Surname coloums filled in which in turn creates the AD username and subsequently the script to create the new AD user, including poplulating Home directory, profile path, Name of Account, Display Name, Group Membership, and other info.

Huzzah!

24th July: Spent the morning not only going through the creation process of new users and their profile folders, Home directories and various permissions but also wrapping my head around the adding of users to a group through the dsmod command - when you have nearly 200 new users to create, batch files FTW! After much head scratching and being bloody sure I had my syntax correct, I find I was slightly out as the default Users group in AD is not classed as an OU, but actually a CN. Meaning the example:

DSMod group "CN=TS Users,OU=Users,DC=company,DC=Co,Dc=uk" -addmbr "CN=Jeff Bartles,OU=office-Users,DC=company,DC=co,Dc=uk"

...should actually be:

DSMod group "CN=TS Users,CN=Users,DC=company,DC=Co,Dc=uk" -addmbr "CN=Jeff Bartles,OU=office-Users,DC=company,DC=co,Dc=uk"

....so now you know.


23rd July: As the Steam Sale draws to a close, users on AVF all muse over how the daily deals have been recycled quite a bit from previous years and how the same games seem to have popped up over and over again within the same summer sale, and based on that, you would expect my list to be quite small.

Nope, feast your eyes on this little lot, meaning my Summer Sale 2012 purchases totalled just over £70:

  1. [*]Deus Ex DLC's
  2. [*]Trine 2
  3. [*]Alan Wake & DLC
  4. [*]Max Payne 3
  5. [*]Payday the Heist [AVF Steam giveaway thread]
  6. [*]Two Worlds II and Pirate DLC
  7. [*]Frozen Synapse RED DLC
  8. [*]Bastion
  9. [*]Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit
  10. [*]Splinter Cell: Conviction
  11. [*]Oblivion: GOY Deluxe
  12. [*]Greenman Gaming/Origin: Kingdom of Amular
  13. [*]Fable III

Ten games (one of which I have already completed) and two lots of DLCs for games I own and one game for the giveaway. Max Payne was the most at £15, but pretty much everything else was a fiver or less. Yes I caved in and bought Kingdoms on Origin, but Steam had it for £40, and Origin through Greenman Gaming had it for £10 with 20% discount, so it would be stupid to resist and I did really like the demo.

15th July: Bought a few more books recently, and this list includes the ones I have eluded to in earlier blogs. This is probably the last six weeks or so worth of purchases.

Arrived:

  • David Gemmell Drenail Tales Vol 2 (Signed)
  • David Gemmell Drenail Tales Vol 1 (Signed)
  • Ben Aaronovitch - Whispers Underground (Signed)

Waiting for:

  • Mark Lawrence - Prince of Thorns (Signed and Lined)
  • Mark Lawrence - Book 2 (Signed 250 limited edition from Golosboro Books)
  • Ben Aaronovitch - Rivers of London (1st Hardback)
  • Ben Aaronovitch - Moon over Soho (1st hardback)
  • David Gemmell - Tales of the Rigante

The Ben Aaronovitch are better versions of the ones I have, as my Rivers is a 6th print and my Moon is a bit beat up - but I did only pay £4 for both of them and they are going to my library at work once the new ones get here. The Gemmell Rigante book is a US book club Compliation - a book never released in the UK. Mark Lawrence is a new writer to me, and book 2 comes out around my birthday. He only appeared on my radar as someone on the forums mentioned him, and after I googled him and found this review, I quickly bought both books, so looking forward to them.

I am also waiting patiantly at the doorstep for my signed books from Rich Burlew's order of the stick. I contacted him recently about the possibility of doodling in some for an extra donation, and this was my reply from the man himself:

  • Actually, I doodle with all the signatures, so I sort of forgot to respond. Sorry about that.

    But on the plus side, your package is mailing tomorrow morning (or Monday, if I miss getting to the post office before noon). I have it right here next to me.

    Thanks!

    --Rich

So not only did I get my doodles for free, but he is packaging it up, touching my parcel...its so magical...no, wait. The relationship has not matured enough yet, it must evolve, I need more contact with writers. The rumours that Gemmell faked his own death to escape me are have not been found to be true....

Ahem. Pics obviously when they arrive.

12th July: The Steam Sale has started! And I bought the Deus Ex DLC pack £3.74 and Trine 2 to start me off. Watch as I try and justify random purchases of games I will promise to play and dont and break through any phoney limit on how much I want to spend this sale (around £30 if your interested.)

11th July: I saw an article in the paper today about a car manufacturer that has developed a air bag for passengers to ensure they dont get badly injured. The air bag pops up from the bottom of the windscreen and also opens the bonnet slightly as more cushioning. To me, it looked like an excellent ramp, and most likely to flip the passanger, or rather roll the passenger over the top of the car and into the path of the car behind, and in most cases, unlikely to be one with this new air bag system. Splat.

4th July: American Independance day or something, but I celebrated by picking up another figure for the 'Tenpast menagerie', a Hag, assuming I reach 10th level that is.

16th June: It's not Father's Day today but it bloody well feels like it - I sit here looking at book (more info later) that the Missus thinks I paid too much money for and I didn't even tell her the real price. So now I am sitting here gingerly reading it with a cup of coffee and chilling on my own as everyone is out - ah, bliss.

11th June: Another one, England vs France:

Parker beats the keeper but the angle just too small to sink it in the back of the net, England passing well and looking tidy. 0-0 after 25 mins both teams very even, England had a nice few runs at goal. England score! Gerard free kick and lescott gets a head to him and goes in on the half hour. 10 mins later it's one all, bottom corner of the goal. France have some cracking shots at goal from distance and look stronger in the last ten mins but it ends 1-1.

Second half first ten mins are even with both teams having a few attempts on goal, but two body checks on Gerrard and Johnston from the french near the goal should both have been free kicks more French stopping our return runs and the crowd think so too "referees a wanker" chanted more than once. French were stronger but the game ends a draw.

10th June: My attempt at a footbal commentary follows for Ireland vs Croatia...

The first goal was scored in 3 mins (Crotia), and Ireland equalised 20 mins later. Fireworks on the pitch and its really pissing down with rain. Its 2-1 at half time to Croatia, the second goal scored few mins before half time.

Croatia start the second half as they started the first and score a goal that hits the post and in off against the keeper, 3-1 to them. The camera man loves the blond Irish lass as she is used at least three times whenever they are on target. Crotia have the ball for most of the game and have the most shots on and off target. Lots of free kicks on both sides as the game comes to an end. Ireland have a corner and a headed shot is very close but even with 5 mins of stoppage the score stays 3-1. Very loud whistles in crowd have not helped at all, as both sides have stopped to look about at the ref, but its all over.

9th June: In the 'Injury lawyers for you' advert the business woman is power walking down the road delivering her speech but then glances to look at two girls in shorts and crop tops brushing a man dressed as a tooth - looking very so much like that she would rather be in their advert than her own.

8th June: Scratch what I said about DnD, a potential mid July date has appeared, huzzah! Oh, and I finished the Comic Zeal iPad App Review the other day, complete with a little animated gif that I was really pleased with :)

7th June: Kickstarters finished for Carmageddon, which was funded, huzzah, and the X-Com clone, Xenonaughts finishes in a few days and thats funded too. Oh, and huzzah for Indian proxies and half price Premium Edition BF3!

No DnD for a while as we all go on holiday and no one can get the same time off, and so its likely to be August! before we play again. Gives me a chance to catch up on chapters then doesnt it.......

5th June: While the missus went with friends to climb through bushes and get kettled by the Police in a vain attempt to see the Queen on her balcony (they did!) I started playing Dues Ex: HR and other than some crappy low res cut scenes, I am really enjoying it. I have played a good few hours (for me) and comparing it to Batman with its crawling through ducts and smashing people in the head. Then I realise that I have not really played much Batman at all and really should.

1st June: I have started to play about more with my David Gemmell website as we close in on the anniversary of his death, and I will be updating the pages to reflect the new (lol, this was done in 2009!) style that I never finished, as well as leaving the Daredevils alone for a little while and concentrating on some books that may be within my grasp.

.....and no, I havent read them yet.

31st May: Today I was detained at her majesty's pleasure, forced to eat food brought to me by people in weird robes, then sat in a dark room where people spoke to me about things I did not understand.

Roughly translated as out with a government employee, grabbing some sausages (no euthanism) in a basement resturant before heading to the cinema to watch The Raid.

26th May: I felt like the baby Jesus today, as a single wise man brought gifts of Corona, Lime and cash. Far better than what the real Baby Jesus got from three wise men!

22nd May: Someone on the (AVF) forums mentioned a good yardstick for games was a pound per hour played. Well I just finished Torchlight, and clocked just over 40hrs and paid less than four quid for it, so I did alright.

It was just brilliant, with a rock hard boss to end with and tons and tons and tons of loot and options throughout the game. So if you have done Titan Quest, and dont want to pay £45 for Diablo III, then currently you can pre-order Torchlight II for £15 and get the first Torchlight free - hows that for a bargin?

20th May: I do like to keep my options open when the Missus is away for the day and it's annoying sometimes when all of your carefully laid out plans don't pan out. What am I waffling on about? My new Sherlock Holmes and Mission Impossible blurays never arrived for me to watch them so I had to play the computer instead, smashing my face into the screen at the toughness of the final boss in Torchlight. 


18th May: More updates from the King of Kickstarter, Rich Burlew as he wrote updates number 37-39 and covered the first release of the Order of the Stick paper minatures, A Monster for Every Season: Spring 2012 which contains nearly 300 images, a sample of which is below. The actual PDF is front and backs obviously, with mounts cleverly made to be able to put one of these models on as a rider and mount.

Brilliant stuff, and free to those like me that backed him.

17th May: Still waiting for the first of my Daredevil purchases to arrive and as I was running out of room, I needed a new box or two allowing me to get rid of all the photocopy paper boxes that I am currently using. Check in some dividers, borrow some bright orange tape and a Dymo device and viola!

Played some more Torchlight, and I really need to finish off at least one game soon, so I think it will be that first then back to Dragon Age II, then hopefully the Skyrim DLC should be out for me to continue with that.

14th May: Despite trying really hard (yeah right) NOT to bid on this, I did. It stayed within my (I cant really afford it, god, whats going to happen if I win?) budget all the while up to the last few hours, and then I slapped down my bid and was winning with £20 under (I cant really afford it, god, whats going to happen if I win?) budget, and then someone slapped more cash down with about 3 minutes to go. I thought long (at least a minute) and hard about upping my (I cant really afford it, god, whats going to happen if I win?) budget, but sensible me stopped stupid me from increasing my (I cant really afford it, god, whats going to happen if I win?) budget further. Stupid stupid sensible me.

Final price? £279. The listing did not give a grade, but I had more pictures and notes regarding it and it was probably a FN copy, so normally would fetch something like £600 to £700.

My final bid? I am not going to tell you because it will make me and the baby Jesus cry.

I consoled myself with a Number 2 (Daredevil No 2, not an epic dump) in a similar condition that again based on pictures and notes sounds like a FN copy, and averages around £150+ for which I paid less than half of that. I will know more when it arrives.

Lastly, I have started Chapter 24, currently entitled, It's a Unicorn!

12th May: A dog shows it has more talent than the rest of Britian, and despite not wanting to get caught up in these kinds of programs, I thought that the Loveable Rogues should have done a little better and also didnt understand why the Magicians did not go through to the finals. Maybe next year a singing magic tricking dog will win to satisfy all categories.

11th May: Not content with the recent remake of Dungeon Master, this month we are inundated with more fantastic looking remakes, all Kickstarter projects. We have Carmageddon, Xenonauts (X-Com) and the 'not really a remake but as we are not getting Titan Quest 2 then this will do', Grim Dawn. Currently, all bar Carmegeddon are funded, so get your wallet out!

I have supported two of the three, and thinking on the third at the moment, as I already have a few irons in the fire - and by Irons I mean Daredevil's, car related bills and other crap to pay for....

10th May: I didnt pick up as many Darevils as I would have liked from the auction I mentioned a few days ago, but did ok, grabbing a key issue for approx half price, and a few other comics for next to nothing, before then being hammered for postage from the US. More info when they actually arrive.....

9th May: Playing loads of Torchlight, and I am nearly at the point I was at when I realised I was playing it on Normal mode rather than Hard. Like everyone else we are also playing DDO, getting ready for the LAN session in June.

4th May: A word from my Hosting site, with appropriate affiliate links. Click here if you want to take up a hosting package and would like to help me save some cash on my next bill. Thanks!

web hosting

3rd May: I hope that The Mistress of eBay is karmic in some way, as I still wake late in the night weeping at the fact that my Gemmell book went for a quid, and that the current high grade Daredevils on eBay.com are all still really low in value despite only 2 and a bit days to go.

Take it away Morrisey......

"........so for once in my life, let me get what I want, Lord knows it will be the first time........"

2nd May: Seeing as how I maxed my character out in the newbie level and dont want to repeat quests on my own, I have dropped DDO for good old Torchlight. I did not play enough of Diablo III in the weekend to properly compare, and I reserve the right to change my mind, but Torchlights customised character stats, skills, the looks, the mechanics all made this 2 year old game better. I know I should rinse my mouth out with soapy water after waiting for DIII for so bloody long, but if you have not played Torchlight, then grab the demo (or pre-buy Torchlight II and get the first game free) now.

1st May: We have been playing a lot of Dungeons and Dragons Online (DDO) which is looking to be our game of choice this coming LAN at Brads. Its Free To Play (FtP) but with buyable elements such as classes and races, character slots and banks and Dungeons. It has worked very well so far, just think of it as a large scale and more action orientated (still has loads of quests) NeverWinter Nights 2 game. Its based on 3.5 edtion, but has some nice extras to make it work as a PC based game, and I am enjoying it enough that should we not play it at the LAN, I will play it myself.

28th April: Star Trek The Next Generation is getting the Blu-Ray treatment, and bloody good it looks too. Its 4:3, but with improved effects and beautiful colours (an old episode was on Dave and the difference between the Mustard Red and Blue of the uniforms was immense) and I bought a taster disk with 4 episodes on it across three seasons.

I have mentioned before a laughable episode in which Picard is taken by an Alien Probe and spends time on a doomed planet. There is no Borg, no Q, no battles, no witty 'Data gets confused' moments, just Picard getting old with his wife. The famous last words (you will know what I mean when you watch it) are laugh out loud funny, and I am sure many people will wonder why exactly this epsiode is on the taster Blu-Ray at all.

My opinion? All I can say is that thankfully no one was about as I finished watching it with tears streaming down my face. :)

23rd April: Today is St Georges day and the 30th Anniversary of the Spectrum, and google spectacually used this image to celebrate both. Hats off to the designer!

I forgot to mention that I picked this up on launch about a week ago, but so far have only played about an hour of it:

log_april

Yep, its none other than a very good update to the old classic:

log_dm

Its called Legend of Grimrock, and iIts not a retextured Dungeon Master, but its own game but with all the puzzles and features of DM. Bloody rock hard in places, but you will love it, and is available on Steam. Buy Now!

22nd April: Finished the Diablo III beta that was available this weekend with the Witch Doctor, who I named 'TenPastsMum', and I have mixed feelings, probably as I did not get to play it enough to answer my own queries. Pretty sure I am going to pre-order it though......

20th April: Passwords are a funny thing. I need to constantly change a login account for work (along with OTP key), that allows me to access and control email accounts. This account password is tied to my own, and so every three months I have to change this password to something different, and it has to be super strong with minimin letter requirements, capitals, lower case, numbers AND symbols. This is not only for email account creation and logging email problems, but to get access to my own emails as well.

Now my domain admin account can be changed, and is changed quite often but it effects nothing really, but the Enterprise Administrator account? Change that password and it causes no end of problems, from Backup Exec not working and right down to individual services that now will not run, or in my case, work for more than a week after the Enterprise Domain Account password was changed, THEN decide that it will not work.

Server 2008 inconsistancy FTW!

April 19th: Dreams are really weird sometimes - I wish I had taken a picture of the Nemi cartoon in the Metro about dreams as it was really funny, while my dream last night was just plain weird. The trouble is, I can remember quite vividly parts of it, and while it could be real, I had to add some weird fucking DnD inspired creature to make it totally fucked up, as well as some invented latvian inspired country that I think was probably stolen by my consiousness whole heartedly by the place in which the Child Snatcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang lived.

The bits that are vivid though was of me trying to take a picture of some beautiful castle building, while constantly getting people walk in front of my shot, and then a mugger notices me, and then wants my camera. I told him to fuck right off and so he produces a gun. I then give him the camera naturally, but then stupidly ask for the memory card as it has stuff on it I want. He automatically gives it to me, I suppose before the rest of his brain realised that he was the one waving a gun and therefore supposed to be making demands. He then removes the card, throws that at my feet, before then tossing the batteries aside and leaving the camera on the floor, runs off.

The weird creature comes in as I gathered all the bits together and run off myself in case the mugger came back, and I end up on some staircase cut from rock (like an amthetheatre) and this furry thing with a weird face that looks like it came from Jim Heson's Labyrinth rolls down the stairs and over my camera bits...it all goes fuzzy from here and then I woke up. The other parts are quite hazey, and I am sure I got to this place being a gooseberry to a couple who dumped me off at a B&B that I walked down the road from while they went to party with little clothes on......who they were I have no idea, and how I ended up with them is a mystery too.

14th April: The missus is not impressed with my constant (and yet well earned) back slapping for the amount of work I have done to the car in the last few days or so. I fed and watered it, replaced not one but two Windscreen cleaner things, changed the broken back red light and then found and ordered the hard to find top red light bulb from the intamaweb and fitted that as well. I have practically serviced the entire car and thinking of giving up being King of IT and being King of Car engineeringthings instead, and quite frankly, not sure why she has not bought a pair of dungerees with my name embroidered on it already.

12th April: The scores on the doors are......sha-ting!

11th April: Chapter 23, Combo Wishes is up! Yes, that really is two chapters literally days apart from each other. My normal notes and musings on this chapter were sadly lost when my iPad crashed and was unable to be recovered so needed a fresh install. As Pages does not have Dropbox support, and I stupidly had not emailed myself a copy as I tend to do, I lost the notes for this chapter. It wasn’t until a little while after we had played the session as well, so I emailed the rest of the party to try and get some idea on what actually happened. I have mentioned countless times that my normal chapter writing does not come out of thin air – I need something (well, quite a lot actually) to jog my memory, and the only thing I could remember was the title I had chosen for the chapter and some rough outlines of the fight itself.

MadMcGlory/McFlurry however stepped up to the plate with this magnificent replacement for my lost work. Thanks again mate!


10th April: Bought some Daredevil's while away for the weekend in Whitstable, and promptly (and I am not sure how) deleted the draft email that contains ALL my Daredevil notes (scroll back to the end of Feb on this page and multiple that level of detail by 15) on prices, conditions, what I am missing, it's a big fucking deal and would have taken me ages to compile again. It was done on the iPhone which does not delete stuff to trash, and this is how I lost a chapter a while back as well before I started Dropboxing everything. Did I remember to Dropbox my Daredevil info? Of course fucking not, thats why I am so pissed.

Thankfully, I have so many PCs logged on at home and at work etc, all with my email open that I had one of my PCs at work and it had the lost draft waiting for me when I unlocked my PC. Which is good as this week is already going to be streeful enough without me working out in the background, "...how can I extract all my daredevil notes?" while I am supposed to be looking after a huge network upgrade.

Now I just need to contact my email provider again and tell them not to process a possible and (after 24 hours not guarenteed) email mailbox reversal which will wipe any new emails.

I finished off the excellent Preacher comics over this weekend away and also had a rare bonding moment with my daughter, loudly singing Bohemiem Raphsody (complete with special voices) in the car. I also found that my Monk Epic quest is still talked about some 10 years or so after I wrote it, which is always warming, and this week I earn my extra pay as we start removing switches from 10 location about the school.

5th April: Chapter 22, Its getting Hoth in here, is up for your viewing pleasure.

3rd April: Due to work commitments, I could only get a brief two days off, so what did I do with my precious time?

  • Painted the front door
  • Read about 20 Preacher comics
  • Played BF3 for about 8 hrs
  • Played Dragon Age II for about 10hrs
  • Moved about loads of data in preparation of new 3tb drive
  • Updated my website with more crap
  • Cried as I took THE parcel to post office (See below)
  • Changed Pelets case (See below)

2nd April: Changed Pelet's PC case over for him and added some braided cables like mine but in red. Pics over on the Madness site, but I will add the lovely comment here - one of those random things that just pops into my head and I then voice when I really shouldnt.

"I didn't take one of the spaghetti at the back, but just imagine for a moment, that situation that you find yourself in, ramming the body of a tramp you have just run over into the back of your boot while looking frantically for the shoe he is missing and wondering if he came like that....I digress. Yes, shoving loads of cables in and then closing the lid, and then checking how it looks on the otherside, and finding that it looks alright actually."

Sometimes I frighten even me.


1st April: I had a few doubles of some David Gemmell books as I replaced them for older versions or signed versions, so decided to let someone else bid on one, with others to follow. The bidding ended today on a BCA version of Druss the Legend. It had a slight bump to the front bottom corner, and was signed to someone called 'Stuart' but otherwise very nice, with a dustjacket well looked after. Well it would be, coming from my home.

It sold for a staggering £120.

Oh wait, I forgot the decimal place, I meant £1.20. After my well packaged and heavy parcel was taken to the post office, and paying the ebay/paypal fees at each end, I think I came out earning exactly nothing. I sold some DC52 comics early first editions and got nothing really on those, so I think I should just stick to buying, I seem to do better with that.

The others that I intended to sell? I gave three signed copies to my daughter who said that she had a mate who read them, and the unsigned hardbacks I will give to the library - then at least they will be still near me. Yes I know that sounds creepy, but if I sold them all and had the hassle of going to the post office and people paid those kinds of prices, I think I would be turned away as no one wants to serve a grown man crying as he hands over a parcel.

30th March: I have finished watching Comic Book Men and now listening to the podcasts from iTunes about toys as a youngster. Now sacrilege I know, but I never had any Star Wars figures that I recall, but I loved the various boy 'dolls' - I know I had loads of Action Men including the German Action man with the sentry box and the excellent motorbike and sidecar. I also had the Six Million Dollar man, and they were talking about the SMDM robot (Maskatron) with the masks and I think I had that as well. Also, I had the Evil Knevil wind up bike which pulled the wheelies and was awesome.

29th March: I like to have my own version of Diceman, but rather than roll a dice in public (its hard enough talking about dice in public, but actually rolling a dice in front of non-dice rollers?) I let Jesus decide for me. In my Tube Station, of the various trains that come along, one train will take me home, and one will take me via the 'ye olde comic shops of london'. This way I find that I really cant be blamed when its actually the baby Jesus telling me to go comic shopping.

Plus I know that he is a very busy man, so when he accidently sends me the train home, I get the comic shop train instead, as he may just have missed me in amongst all the people taking up his time with prayers and other crap like being needy or poor or inflicted with fungal whassnames.

27th March: I proved just how much of a bloke I am by consuming a crate of Corona over a period of about 24hrs, and feeling no effects whats so ever and going to work with a skip to my step on Monday. Then I sleep funny that night and wake up with a killer migraine and cant make it into work. Ghay.

22nd march: I learnt something new today, how to discover who is using the precious two RDP slices on a server. Pity I did not find it before I sent a scathing email demanding who was logged on to 'please log off now' as I discovered that something was corrupt and it was me logged on twice. Oh well, you live and learn!

21st March: Back to writing this lunch as the internet here is so frustrating that I want to pull my own face off and hammer my naked skull into my keyboard. I picked up another lovely Daredevil (No 17) and also a new MacBookPro, with lighty up keyboard and glass touchpad. Which one do you think I liked the most?

20th March: A little BF3 update, as I have played loads of it in the last week or so and as shown below on my lovely little app called Plater Stats (free, and it allows updates!) we can see which little member of our group has powered an extra 15+hrs in than my 100ish hrs at a glance. Looks like I have some catching up to do....

17th March: A keyboard found at work. Amateurish work though, spelt 'fuck' wrongly - a 'c' could have been taken from another keyboard and should have really added 'my' and then removed the excess letters. A solid 7 for effort though.

5th March: Yes, I got the Daredevil's out again, this time to do my little breakdown of the conditions of each issue, ready for the scans that I will do in the next few days to update my website with. I also bagged up a couple of loose issues, and moved some stuff around to make it look like the cupboard is not as packed as it actually is. I failed.

3rd March: A lovely parcel full of Daredevils arrived on my doorstep and made me jump for joy with its lovelyness. I gazed at them for a while, then carefully put them all back again. Still waiting to pick up a few more issues before I start reading them in a sitting, and its likely I will wait for everyone to bugger off out so that I can enjoy them in peace. Ignoring the obvious high value ones (admitidly, no 7 was an expensive issue) I only need 17, 46, 48, 56, 61, 63 and 71 out of issues from 6 to 80, which is not bad at all I think.

Played Skyrim for a few hours, and by playing Skyrim I mean fire it up for 10 minutes and spend 3 hours looking at mods. I did remove some doubles as such, and updated some others, and then tinkered with some mods like this one that effects Depth of View. It looks really good in motion, although very washed out - I am still tinkering with this though at the moment.

1st March: My daughter joins the iPhone 4s club, and I swear this is after saying its rubbish not so long ago - how fickle teenagers are. Not only this but she is also impatiant, she could not wait to ask me questions about apple accounts and so made a brand new one rather than use the same one she has on the iPod Touch, simply because she did not want to merge apps across devices.

I suspect this is more a Dad thing though, as she simply must know more than me and doesnt want to take advice from someone who moderates and constantly reads Apple Forums, watches (or lately reads) live Keynotes, sets up peoples phones, has certificates for Apple OS, is part of a developer program and helps developers with comic apps. I wonder who she gets it from.....

29th Feb: Well my month of Daredevil eBay purchases comes to a close, and I don't think I did too badly. I have to wait for them all to come in of course, but they were all high grade (7.0+ and mostly 7.5-9.0 - there is no 10.0 for reference) which makes them higher priced for 'Silver Age' comics (30+ years old).

I had budgeted about £100, which quickly increased to closer to £150, but even this huge amount tied down the bidding because of the amount of bloody issues the person listed all at once. Especially when I needed more than 30 that were on sale, and maybe another 10 to replace ones that had in lower (3.0 to 4.5) grades that I wanted to replace.

So you end up waiting, seeing how bids on earlier items are doing before then committing to others. My excel spreadsheet shows my last bids (there were many more as I chopped and changed between things I wanted) and how much more I was prepared to bid, but in most cases, I was right at my limit and unable to snipe as many comics finished one minute after each other.

So what does £120+ get you in Daredevil comics?

10 :: FN/VFN (7.0) £20.37, 29/12/02. At the top of my bid, and worth three times as much, for instance a FN+ (6.0) copy normally hits £55. This replaces one I already have in VG- condition, but the cover has multiple creases which makes it look far worse than it is.

18 :: VFN (7.5) - £24, 29/12/02. One of the few I was missing in the sub 20 numbers, I was ready to bid another few quid on top. Saved around £5-10 off rrp.

31 :: FN/VFN (7.0), £8.27, 29/02/12. Replaces a G (3.0) copy I have, with the cover missing a corner, lots of missing little bits. I still had £5 more headroom, and probably saved £7+ off rrp.

32 :: VFN- (7.5), £9.00, 29/02/12. Replaces another one I have that is not so good. Had a few quid headroom, and again probably saved £5+ off rrp.

34 :: VFN (8.0) £7.51, 29/02/12. As 31, this replaces a copy that has little cover holes and torn cover. About £1.50 headroom on my max bid (meaning I actually bid £9) so probably got this at half price of rrp.

45 :: VFN, £10, 29/02/12. It was Buy Now @ £12, but offers accepted. Seeing as how one of the lot I was bidding on was a VFN 45, which went for £14, and then another one in VFN went for £14.55, I was happy to snap up this for a tenner. Saved around £7-10 off rrp.

47 :: VFN £13, 29/02/12. It was Buy Now @ £16, and again went in with roughly a 20% off offer that was accepted.

70 :: VFN/NM (9.0) £10.03, 29/02/12. At the max of my bid, and saved about £5 off rrp.

78 :: FN/VFN (7.0) £4.72, 29/02/12. I had placed a max bid of £7, and this has an rrp of about £11.

79 :: VFN- (7.5) £7.52. I had a top bid of £9, and saved a few quid on RRP.

84 :: NM- (9.2) £8.95. Hit the top of my max, and I reckon this a £20+ rrp comic in this condition.

89 :: VFN- (7.5) I paid £7.03, my max, and this is another £15+ comic.

Basically I had the problem of not knowing how much I was going to eventually get (you think!), plus my internet at work is rubbish, meaning refreshing the page was not an option really. If I had more cash, or not won earlier bids, I would have probably bid £10 on the lot from 80-100, winning a good 15 of them. Plus, far too many buggers were bidding on my comics - the cheek of it. Ideally, no one would have noticed them, and I would have grabbed loads of them all really cheap! Oh well, maybe next time.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing though, but I am not complaining - I ended up with 12 comics, 8 issues of ones I was missing, and 4 replacing issues I already had.

There was lots of work maintaining the bids and watching, but this type of thing happens once in a blue moon. A massive bunch of high grade Daredevils and me with cash in my pocket? I am thinking we can liken this occurrence in terms of Haileys Comet....

Expect my 'Theydon Comics' pages to be updated shortly with them once they arrive, and I have just started using my daughters scanner, which works an absolute treat to get the covers in really fine detail.

26th Feb: The latest DnD session (32nd) has been and gone, and we had a very special guest appearance by none other than the mad Monk McFlurry flown in by the little pixies that hide in a Skype enabled laptop. This worked far better than I thought it would, with only one? dropout that a simple reconnection fixed. By his own admission, he did just as useless as he would have done should he have been there in person, fumbling (even virtual dice are no friend of the Monk) and then getting licked into a paralytic state. I can hear McFlurry from here, shouting something about but as no one knows what he is talking about, we can ignore him. Sweet!

23rd February: I started a proper spreadsheet with regards to some watched items on eBay, proper anal stuff with how much I have bid in total versus how much my current winning bids total to how much the items were on specific days, all colour coded and documented with approx matching prices from other websites selling the items. Its also reminded me about hide and unhiding cells as I make it all neat and tidy, which is always a good thing as I never really use Excel in the same way as I have done, writing proper cell formulas and complex sheets. I say done, but I meant I did for a few years, as for the most part I have used Excel to create forms and check lists that proper Office users would scoff at as they masterfully create them in Word. And then add Macros to. The bastards.

Back to my crap eBay purchases, I just hope I have the cash I need to get EVERYTHING, but sadly, the buyer is selling 100+ items all at the same bloody time rather than stagger them, and I want at least 30 of them meaning I have to be selective.

This is like picking your favourite child, well, if you had 30 of them I supose and.....well, I cant really describe anything in a similie form as it really doesn't mean very much to most people. But it does to me and I want the shiney things in my posession. OK?

22nd February: The last OoTS Kickstarter news (until next time I asssume!) is that he not only hit a million dollars, but ended up just shy of $1.2 million pounds on top of his original $57k request.

My hard drives woes are a distant memory, as it seems that everything can be resolved by sticking it in the freezer for 16hrs, the weird thing is that I actually didnt get a huge amount of stuff off it that I actually needed. Mostly it was organisational stuff (re-arranging and renaming comic scans mostly), which to be honest, wasnt that much and also game mods related to games I am playing like DAII and Skyrim.

My summary for the thread I linked to below was this:

"Anyway, as it seems that sticking things in Freezers for 16hrs makes them work properly again, I am off to dig up the neighbours cat that myseteriously dissapeared, remove my daughters attitude gland and grab my bank account and stick them all in the freezer. "

You may have noticed that I added a little book section to the right, and that once again I am reading Legend by David Gemmell. For the 30th time. I have mentioned previously that one of the reasons I do so much writing is a poor (or very selective) memory - sometimes the minute (pronounced min you tay, I cant find the little umlat hat for the whatever letter its supposed to be on) is lost and a synopsis remembered. This is quite handy for me with regards to books like Legend, which I have steamrolled through three quarters of in about two days.

This July will be six years since his death, and I miss the new books and characters and mourn the loss of him denying that any book written about the Thirty will be published. And yes, I still have unopened copies of the last two Troy Books which I have not yet read, nor have I re-read the first book, and probably wont touch any of them for some time to come - it just would feel final in a way I cant really explain.

20th February: My hard drive died yesterday, taking with it a Tb of data that I had not backed up since August last year. Could have been worse as I might have had nothing at all. More detailed info here, and I have actually had some success with my hard drive, a plastic bag and 16hrs in the Fridge....

In other news.....

......not only that, he hit his initial pledge of $60k PLUS the one million. However, to achieve this, (and not including anything that people have added on as extra's) he needs to send out something like:

  • 13,687 Roy magnets
  • 2,811 8x10 prints
  • 12,650 sticker sheets
  • 4,460 HP pads
  • 3,149 colouring books
  • 20,135 OOTS books
  • 818 boardgames

Then, not including the bonus PDFs (60+? pages or so worth of strips), he is doing:

  • 120+ Full colour drawings
  • 40 Digital Portraits
  • 20 Digital Family Portraits
  • 22 Full colour Party (6+ members of your DnD group) drawings.

Not that much then!

19th February: Another Kickstarter OoTS update, and its now showing 11,655 backers, $953,395 with 53 hours to go. In 12hrs, 33k has been added to the total and more signed books and bits available and quickly gone again. Utter madness.

Anywhoo, I missed a couple of days on the exercise bike in the last week, so made up for it today by cranking it up to 8, and getting multiple 5ks in. Then I punished myself even more by going out on the Boris Bikes and cycling over to Covent Garden and back. I made up for this by grabbing a Y The Last Man Vol 3 though, to help take my mind off my aching thighs.

18th Febuary: OoTS update - 11,348 backers have pledged $920,153 with 65hours to go. Its about half eleven at night, and update 23 from Rich has got him chasing the Million mark. One Million dollars for a comic. Incredible.

Rich then started to add additional awards and has promised one every hour or two until the drive ends, which is likely to be quite taxing, but apparently "Sleep is for other comic readers". Handily, sleep is for other Americans, as he updated, added more pledges and I was lucky enough to straight away grab a signed Snips, Snails and Dragon Tales increasing my bid from a normal version. Then the next hour came along, another update and a signed print only pledge was created, meaning three signed books came up (Start of Darkness, Snips and Origin of the PCS), so I grabbed that instead.

I have now changed my pledge about 5 times.....

February 17th: Had a much needed reverse gaming session on Battlefield 3 last night, as Soldier Theydon 'top middle of the table' Bois was replaced by Captain Theydon 'Awesome' Bois as I was near the top on the first game where we joined mid way through, rocked the top (MVP 1, not top of my team) slot twice on the trot before returning to the top middle (around 12 of 32 in a 64 player game) once more. I am now Major Bois, and with my quite frankly huge amount of points scored, am half way through this already. Expect Major Awesome Bois to be locked in a cupboard and the key thrown away, locked away for a long long time and under a Master lock that not even a certain Cat Warrior called Mr Tiddles could open with his skills.....

See what I did there? With thanks to my excellent segeway (sp?) I have done a little Skyrimming, but not too much in the last couple of days, and again far too much time spending looking at mods than actually playing - I reckon you could take my playtime and add 50% for Skyrim related thread reading and mod scouring and that may still not be enough. Oh, and just to proove that all PC geeks are in fact sexual deviants, the top mods of each month on Nexus for all five months include a nude mod of some description. Just dont click on this months mod while at work, or near anything thats a biped.

Order fo the Stick update: 10,556 Backers and $837,115 pledged with 4 days to go.

This means that mystery prize 7 was unlocked for DnD fans (thats me!) and also, OoTS gets into the Kickstarter top 5 raised $ of all time, and just $13k short of the patch confirmed. Nice one!

Now all I need is a UK based person to give up a $52 or $57 slot so I can get an autographed book! It didnt help that I looked at my books last night, and where I have used a phone box as a divider, the sheer weight of the other books have bent all my stick books around the phone box as such - hard to explain, but they curl backwards at the right hand corner by quite a lot and do not lie fucking flat anymore....no, these are in fact tears of rage thankyou very much......anyway, lots of books piled up on top of each other now to straighten these out hopefully. As a precaution, my pledge increased to get all the little skinny books (-1, 0, and the missing Snips) incase the smaller and less likely to straighten books dont revert back to normal. No update from Rich yesterday, but he has been updating his comics on a daily basis, and it looks like the target for the Elan patch shown below will be hit around 8pm-12pm tonight based on current rate of financing, and then as soon as a price is listed for it, another surge as people that have not already done so increase their bids ($5-$10) accordingly to nab one.

February 15th: Order of the Stick has now passed three quarters of a million dollars, which quite frankly is mental. Currently, the stats stand as follows:

9,798 Backers have pledged $769,118 (of a $57,750 goal) with 6 days to go.

We also have a new goal - $850k gets us the chance to add a sewn badge to our orders, so then I can dream of the days when I was a girl scout. Dib Dib Dib!

February 13th: My favourite webcomic, which naturally is all about Roleplaying games, Order of the Stick has recently added itself to a website called Kickstart, which basically obtains funding through various packages offered. In this case, Rich Burlew needed just under $60k to fund a print run of one of the books that had gone out of print a while back. This was smashed within the first day or so, and since then, with 8 days left of a 30 day run, has raised some $656,115 as of 08:25 this morning.

He has put down various price points in which you can pledge - I will stress this is not giving away money, you do get something out of it. In my case, I went for the $25 pledge, which gets me a slew* of free stuff simply for going over $10, for the 8x10 cast print:

Then I added another $30 for the only book I am missing, Snips, Snails and Dragon Tales which is all the Dragon Magazine reprints plus some other short stories that have not been reprinted or published on the web, and the only book I have not been able to grab from Orcs Nest because it needed to be ordered direct from the US.

New 'options' are added at various points (although I think I have missed them all?) meaning I can change my pledge at any time, but as I have all the books, and dont quite have the $5000 for the top pledge (which has already been grabbed anyway) but I think Tenpast or Grassy Knoll would have looked splendid as a member of the Order of the Stick:

"Your original D&D character, based on your descriptions (within reason), gets a walk-on cameo in The Order of the Stick webcomic sometime this year. Plus, you get an original signed crayon drawing of that character, an autographed copy of War and XPs, and the Roy Greenhilt magnet."

Regardless, Snips will sit nicely on my bookshelf, assuming I can find room for it that is...

*Which currently includes - a fridge magnet, colouring book, stickers, Hit Point pad and 6 PDFs of comics especially created during this drive.

February 12th: Some random babblings. Put up a new blind, and then spent what seems like ages cleaning my daughters Toy Watch with a baby wipe. We also bought an exercise bike, so I have done 5km a day on it so far. Apparently 1km = 40cal burnt according to its display, so my efforts have probably only just balanced out against my alchol consumption (which was not that much) for the weekend. I will stick at this though, until the next entry I make here which tells you, the dear reader, that I have not stuck at this and have been lying, which is very probable, so I may as well come clean now.

February 10th: One of those brilliant double entendre days, and I dont mean the 'nudge nudge wink wink say no more' kind of "..I'll give YOU a cup of coffee.." which in most cases dont make sense and are simply crass suggestive sexual comments rather than the elegance of a proper double entendres. So, today we had delights such as "..I could'nt reach round and stick it in the back" - a USB Apple charger in case you are wondering in the rear USB ports of a PC hidden under a shelf, and "..I had to do him locally" - adding a temporary user as a local Admin inable to install equipment specific software. If anyone had said "I could'n stick it in the front hole" (which has been said before) on this day, I think my head would have exploded. Fnarr, fnarr.

February 9th: Please refer to me know as 'the Arch Mage' as I free Winterhold from maurading beast things and prove that me and the twins (double Demora Lords from the Twin Souls perk) can smash our way through pretty much anything.

It feels like a lot longer but I am close to racking up 60hrs in both BF3 and Skyrim as we approach the three months release day on them both. My missus can't and won't accept that an hour and a half a day every day since November spent on either one of these games is acceptable, while I think that I should be playing them both more often - especially since I must have racked up 24 of the BF3 hours in one long weekend in Cornwall.

I played through the BF3 Co-op missions with McGlory last night, which was very good, and made me want to play the Single player, but its hard to find time, as if anyone else is on, you naturally want to play a massive battle and interact with (mostly) real people. And obviously, to shout and hurl abuse at each other (or subject them to abuse because someone else that cannot hear you shout, however loudly the words - and please excuse my language, "..hes there! he's there! fucking cunt stabbed me!")

Anyway, the main news for today is a chapter release. Yes its taken absolutely bloody ages, but its here at last. May I present, Chapter 21 - "Indiana Stumpy and the Circle of Doom" for your reading pleasure.

February 7th: Added the books I have read this year, which is only 5 weeks old and I have 3 and a half listed, which is not bad at all. I am also quite near the end of the process that will see Chapter 21 published. I will admit that even for me this has taken a huge amount of time - the chapter was played in 2010, and I started editing it mid 2011, so its taken the best part of six months on and off to produce. Which by my own sub standard standards is pretty shocking.....

If it helps, I have been playing a huge amount of Skyrim and Battlefield 3. The blank stares indicate it doesn't. Oh well.

February 6th: Dont go into Burberry (Covent Graden) if you feel in any way insecure. They employ models as doormen/security, dressed in fantastic Burberry Duffle/ Trenchcoats (checking later, I think it was actually this Pea Coat) and because of the way that the shop is laid out - womens stuff that at first glance you cant tell are womens (skinny looking jeans for instance) until you look at them and find the size xx on them - a kind of Schrödinger's Cat thing (no, I didnt know about it until after Big Bang Theory either) I couldnt see where the coats were and so asked the doorman on the way out. And stroked his arm to feel the material. Not touched, stroked.

I was actually looking for a new beanie hat and found that their cable knit beanie was a staggering £125! Yes its Burberry and yes I knew it wouldnt be £20, but if the security men's coat is £595, how can a hat be £125?

Anyway, my stroking arm got me an invite to the Men's section to try on a coat (its downstairs if you find yourself wondering) and I am now wondering if the stroking arm technique is a way to get directions. Walk in, stroke a thigh, "ah, you want Jeans sir, this way..." so I am off to La Senza on the way home to test my theory out.

February 5th: Our BF3 monthly scores on the doors are as follows, and we have all been on recently, with a weird 1AM co-incedental meetup happening at the weekend for all six of us. There is no coralation between BFBC2 and BF3 ranks (50 vs 145) and for reference I have just over 60hrs played, where I had 240+ Hrs in BFBC2.

Hooah!

February 4th: Had one of my night terrors, that thankfully did not involve me assualting my missus in the night, about a mate who is going out with a young lady from Oz had just came back from a three month stay had brought back this glider cloak thing that is the latest craze out there. Just so that you are keeping up with the fiction/reality bit, no he hasnt been to Oz in a while and b) I dont know if the thing I dreamt of even exists, but if it does, its bloody dangerous in the hands of people like me.

Anyway. I leapt off a suitable height - a garage or something and glided along a road, narrowly missed a tree and then got caught in an updraft and shot up 40' feet and landed on a sloping roof, where I spent what felt like ages wondering how the fuck I was going to get down without killing myself.

Thankfully, a unseen hatch opened and I was let in and then wandered through an old peoples home? I dont know it got a bit hazy here and I kind of woke up, so I dont know if it was interconnected, or I just dream of old people's houses generally.

January 14th: I read in CustomPC that they are trying to simplify the recomended game settings for PC games, mostly for those people that are unsure exactly what components they have installed within the funny box under the table. They are suggesting a tiered level system comparing a system spec equal to a PS3 or XBox that is say 'level 7' then if you have this spec, then its 'level 8' etc. Why is it that I can see a flaw straight away in this? If you cant tell that your GPU is a 4850 or similar that is printed on some games now, then how will you know what CPU is inside?

Why not use whats already available, the Windows Index system? No lengthy level corrilatation or matching system specs that you have no idea what they mean versus a list that you have to look up, you simply run the test once (and after component chages obviously) and you have your score. Then the people that buy SimsX will know they need a 3, and thats ok, as their PC scores a 4.5. This is not in XP, and the score did change from Vista (max 5.9) to Windows 7 (max 7.9) but I am sure a 5.9 in Vista is a 5.9 in W7 (hopefully)......common sense sometimes can be overlooked by lots of people who should know better.

January 10th: Just call me Mr Fantastic, Mr Comic Reader-tastic, as another comic reader creator got in touch. They read my review of their reader, took my suggestions on board, and are looking at changing their product accordingly. Thats two this year, and four in total that I have been in direct contact with. Now, if only I could work out how to get paid for it....I think I could manage sitting at home all day reading comics while being paid handsomely, dont you?

January 9th: A few massive sessions of Skyrim have leveled me to 30th, but I did also fit in painting the wall in the kitchen. No, not a task in Skyrim, but in actual real life. Although come to think of it now, perhaps if you earned achievements in real life, then tasks such as painting may indeed become more palatable.

I will also add that conditioning brought on by Skyrim (and all the other Elder Scrolls games) and Gothic 3 has made me want to harvest flowers that I see in real life, and sheer will power alone stops me. That and the fact that I dont have an Alchemy lab to make potions out of them.

January 6th: I must be doing something right as my reviews of various Comic Readers available on the iPad has prompted a developer to get in touch with me. Chuffed obviously!

Sadly, this is mired by the fact that poor old Bob Holness died. All together now, "...I'll have a 'P' please Bob....." *snigger*

January 4th: Today I was at a meeting were around 50 of the 200 people present were basically listening to stuff not appropriate to their type of work. So I wisely spent my time trying to improve my telekenisis powers to attempt to move a polystyrene cup. I gave up after ten minutes though, and turned to my second choice of 'guess the first digit' of my OTP key. Sadly I think that a chimp probably had better odds of flinging feeces at a wall covered in numbers and marking it than my poort attempt. Oh well, practice makes perfect!

January 3rd: Confusingly due to the Bank Holiday falling in the middle of term, I am back at work with only a handful of other people, rather than back on the 4th. So, as you can tell, I am either hard up against it, or simply slacking and filling a void between a long break and an early lunch. You decide.

My Steam games of the Christmas Sale were as follows:

  • The Witcher 2 - £Present
  • Morrowing GOY - £Present
  • Magic the Gathering DLC Pack 2 - £Present
  • UFO Extraterrestials Gold - £Present
  • Arcania (Gothic 4) - £Present
  • Orcs Must Die plus DLCs - £4
  • NWN2 Platinum - £4
  • EYE - £2
  • Humble Bundle 4 (For Super Meatboy, Cave Story+ and Bit Trip Runner) - £5
  • Arcania Gothic 4 Add-on - £4
  • Shogun DLCs - £4
  • Binding of Issac - £1
  • L.A. Noire - £9

Not a bad haul at all for £33! Thanks to all for my presents, I will play them, honest! Assuming you substitute the word 'honest' for the understanding that I am playing Skyrim. Ah, I see the understanding nodding, good. Appreciate it.

Talking of Skyrim, I am now 24th level, and pretty much kicking and ressing arse, as I smash my way across the countyrside leaving a pile of smouldering ash in my wake. Level 20 seemed to be a weird transition from being crap to nothing could touch me, and I dont know why...but I am put back in my place by a Master Necromancer who chain healed herself over and over again even with me, a Frost Elemental and my sidekick Lydia wailing upon her, before she speed casts this icicle machine gun into my face. Got her in the end, only took about 6 goes, and her best effort was to kill Lydia, then res her in front of me so that I get stabbed and killed by my own follower. Brilliant game.