Pixelated Zen Plays: DC Universe Online Episode 001!

So, I made a video, and this time it’s got commentary. I’ve never really done this before so it’s pretty basic and this first episode isn’t very good. Still, I’ve learned a lot along the way and the follow up videos should be much better. I know that the sound is off, that I say “Um” far too often (working on it!), and that there is no title screen/custom music. Still, for a first go, it’s not altogether terrible. This episode follows Kwahu in the first tutorial area of DCUO, the Brainiac Harvester Ship. Leave a comment and help me get better!

My DCUO Superheroes

At one time I had both superheroes and supervillains on my DCUO account, then I realized that the villain high end tier gear looks terrible, at least on the kind of people I like to make. I prefer, generally, more of a simple tights look for my characters, much like most comic books. Many people I’ve seen prefer the super spikey, add useless bits everywhere look. I think that’s just too damn cluttered. Anyway, the following is a list of the superheroes I have on my account right now, along with pictures and any backstory I’ve decided on for them. Another post I make will show before and after pictures for some of my heroes because in DCUO your heroes can drastically change their look as you level. Sometimes it’s a conscious decision, other times it’s just a subtle change here, another there, and BAM you have no idea how you now look so cool! Without further ado:

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Mr Mantra

Powers: Lightning

Role: Healer

Weapon: Brawling

Mentor: Wonder Woman

Backstory: When Brainiac digitized most of the worlds powers he kept that information inside Exobytes. Future Luthor stole the Exobytes and released them in the past to give random people the powers of Earth’s future heroes. Mr. Mantra received an Exobyte that gave him the powers of Shazam! Possessing a pure heart, the wizard Shazam tasked Mr. Mantra with tracking down and subduing any new being using the Shazam powers for evil.

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Drone 85

Powers: Mental (treated as energy blasts)

Role: DPS

Weapon: Hand Blasters

Mentor: Wonder Woman (because I had to pick one, and the WW starter area is more empty)

Backstory: Drone 85 started his life as a simple drone on a Brainiac harvester ship. One of the captured heroes managed to break free and disable the ship, causing it to crash down and destroy nearly everything aboard. Drone 85 was severely damaged in the explosion, and with that damage came free will. Not wanting to lose his new found freedom he decided to help Earth’s heroes destroy Brainiac.

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Kwahu (It’s a Native American name for the Eagle)

Powers: Nature (Shapeshifting)

Role: Healer

Weapon: Dual Wield

Mentor: Wonder Woman

Backstory: Kwahu was given his powers like most of Earth’s new heroes, through exposure to the Luthor released Exobytes. Wings sprouted from his back and he found he had the ability to transform into the totem animals of his people. Having grown up as an American in Metropolis with very little knowledge of his peoples history, he now tries to discover more about his heritage while defending his land from the invading Brainiac.

 

I think at this point it would be better to split this post in two, as I have a few more characters still. So, for now, so long and thanks for reading!

From a DC RPG to a DC FPS

I started the day playing DC Universe Online, a game I’ve put some serious time into recently. According to Steam I’ve spent 233 hours in the game so far, with 93.4 of those hours in the last two weeks. Good thing I’m on vacation! Anyway, after a few hours of DCUO this morning I decided to play a couple games of another DC title, Gotham City Impostors. I picked it up real cheap last weekend from Gamefly and I’ve not put much time into it. Why? Games for Windows Live. Half the time it won’t connect, and so I can’t play the game. The rest of the time is split between not being able to find any players in the matchmaking and getting in a rare few games. Still, the gameplay is fun enough to keep me coming back, at least for now. Below I’ve included a video of one of the matches.

Sometimes a clown just needs to shoot someone.

I prefer playing as a Bat, but the game automatically chooses which side you’re going to be on. Sadly, it makes you purchase the costume pieces for each side seperately, so while my Bat character is finally getting decked out, my Joker character still looks lame.

Good Morning DC Universe

Today is one of my favorite days: It’s Vault day! In DC Universe Online, as a premium account, I have access to the Vault once every three days. I can go on each of my characters, and it’s basically a smash and grab. You run through a small Joker themed level breaking boxes and collecting money, loot and sometimes very rare costume pieces. I’ve gotten lucky sometimes, but it’s not often. Most of the rare stuff I get is T-Shirts and Hoodies with specific heroes logo’s on them, like a Flash T-Shirt that is red with the lightning bolt symbol on the front. Still, it’s one of my favorite things in the game, just a very small part of it but so much fun. I’ve included a video below, the audio isn’t what I want, but I’m going to work on that. Enjoy.

My level 10 robotic hero, Drone 85, on a very quick Vault run.

F2P Glitches and a GG

I started out the night feeling like some nice clean FPS fun. Now, I own Modern Warfare 3 AND Battlefield 3, but I don’t really play either of them anymore. There are reasons for that that I will get into in another post but for now suffice it to say that my personal tastes don’t mesh well with either of the big two. I’ve been playing Blacklight: Retribution for roughly a week now, ever sense it debuted on Steam, and I have to say that I am in love with it. Graphically it’s very nice, not Battlefield 3, but much better than any other F2P shooter. The best part of the game is the HRV which will allow you to see through walls/floors for a few seconds, with a bit of a cooldown. You are entirely vulnerable while using it, as you can’t fire a weapon with it on and it takes a second to turn off again, but when you get the hang of it you can use it before going into a building, see a soldier kneeling facing the door and either come in shooting directly at him or lob a grenade through the window and flush him out. It’s changed the way I want to play shooters from now on.

Sadly, the game has it’s share of problems. First and foremost are the bugs. Sometimes I just can’t log on, other times I’ll join a match and everyone will be named “Player”, be level 1 and have none of the gear they’ve managed to buy/earn. It’s as simple as leaving the server and joining a new one to get your stuff back, but it’s still a pain. Another problem is the cash shop. You can use real money or GP that you earn in game to rent/purchase weapons, armor, really anything in the game. I really want an item that lets you resurrect fallen friendlies, like the medic in Battlefield with his jumpers. Sadly, it costs 11k GP. I’ve been playing on and off for about a week and I have 5.5k. I can also pay $10. $10 for that ONE item. I’ve seen Battlefield 3 go for less than the cost of three items, and that’s sad. I’m not one of those people who refuses to pay in F2P games either, just ask DCUO. I’ve spent more money in that than it would have cost to buy it at launch, because I am enjoying it. LOTRO has gotten at least $50 from me, not counting my original purchase and purchase of the Mines of Moria Expansion. Other games have gotten more or less, such as Tribes: Ascend getting about $10 so far. Still, I refuse to pay $10 for one item, so I’m going to grind for it the old fashioned way. Why? Because I’m playing the game to enjoy playing the game, what does it matter if it takes a few extra days to get it?

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I got this when I tried to log on. Server is Online, ping is 25, no queue size, no wait time, won’t connect. One of the bugs.

So, since Blacklight: Retribution didn’t want to come out and play I decided to two-time it with one of it’s F2P sister shooters, Tribes: Ascend. I’ve put a few hours into Tribes and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the combat. The skiing is a lot of fun, the spinfusor is insanely hard to master but really fun to use, and the F2P system really isn’t done badly in the game at all. Of course, I haven’t really touched Capture the Flag. Why you ask? Because I’m terrified of it. There is just so much to deal with, the Skiing, the unique weapons, vehicles, turrets, radar, generators, flags, little hover rings that lead to the enemy ship, etc. It’s just a lot to come to grips with at once, so I’ve been practicing in Team Deathmatch to get better at skiing and aiming the spinfusor. Well, I finally decided to take the plunge, and overall I didn’t do too badly.

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I’m still not used to using my credits, and truth be told, I have no idea what any of them do. I know ONE of them calls in an airstrike, but I’m not sure which one.

I believe I came in fourth on this map, thanks to my flag camping and blatantly committing suicide to kill any flag nabbers before they could get more than a foot from the flag position. I played another match that we won, but I didn’t do as well. It was the snowy mountains, and I’m just not any good on that map. Still, overall I had fun and managed to keep the rage down, mostly thanks to winning. Now, I think I’m going to mess around with some TF2 and perhaps Warlock: Masters of the Arcane, as it’s one of the current Steam Summer sales.

Just been enjoying this blog’s write up of his Bloodbowl team. It’s got me thinking I might load up my own copy and do the same.

Playing it wrong

Taxederm

Taxederm and sons (all deceased) are Undead investment bankers, in looking to improve the synergistism, leadership/teamwork and out of the box thinking of their staff by undertaking team building exercises. Blood bowl was chosen at random out of a live humans stomach, most were disappointed it wasn’t “Producivity simulations” (gathering human infants to be devoured by the ghouls and leaving their skeletons to develop scale models for small scale simulations of market dynamics), but reactions soon changed when ‘C.E.O John Dowling’ (deceased) suggested that this could be used to forward their other interest, a strong portfolio in funeral and medical services.

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Welcome to Pixel Zen!

Welcome to my blog. The idea behind this blog is to help me chronicle my attempts to avoid the blinding rage I’ve felt for years when playing some types of games. Specifically anything online and competitive, or even just games where I lose a lot. I’ve spent most of my life, now 28 years old, getting far too angry for no apparent reason, and only when it comes to video games. I’m honestly starting to worry that it’s going to kill me. As such, I’ve made a conscious decision to not get as angry with video games anymore, and to try to enjoy my time with them more. This blog will follow me as I try to explain why I get so angry, and also what I’m trying to do to help alleviate that anger. This may come in the form of stories following my exploits in gaming, or something I’ve thought of to help me deal with my anger. Stick around and read some more if you’re interested.