Figured I'd have to post something about it at least.
Friday, December 29, 2006
This character AlyCat's Claws is just a funny person. Her writing style is great and she is very honest. She really should have some things there that you can relate to.
I still get a good laugh out of her "Blog Song":
Head over to her blog and say hi.
So what happens when a search engine comes out and lets the users actually rank your popularity? Well...right now, Sproose home page offers just that very feature. Just type in a search and the index will come up. Then you can rate the relevance of the sites that come up with a 5 star rating system. 5 being best and 1 being worst. You can even remove the site from the list altogether for your searches.
Thursday, December 28, 2006
On top of already being able to earn with PayPerPost, a site that brings bloggers together to create blog advertising for advertisers, this site is going to help you acquire advertisers by placing a banner on your blog for them to do so. This is really why I signed up for it in the first place, but I've found that they have some other nice features that will help bloggers maximize their performance and tracking.
They have a free tracking service that gives you various blog statistics such as visitor stats as well as Adsense stats. The service brings bloggers and advertisers together to help us make more money with our blogs. A community forum is available too that will give you even more ideas and more people to connect with.
It is going to be interesting to see how PayPerPost incorporates the site with their own. I believe it will certainly bring more notice to the site and in turn give us members more opportunity to earn more money. I'm just glad to be a part of both and look forward to even more income.
Wednesday, December 27, 2006
haha...that's not really a joke, but it is a joke. Time to scour the web for some great Liedowns jokes. The season and the organization is a joke so might as well just roll with it. They are 2-13 right now and one loss away from the #1 overall pick in the draft.
Q. How do the Detroit Lions count to 10?
A. 0-1, 0-2, 0-3, 0-4, 0-5, 0-6, 0-7, 0-8, 0-9, 0-10
Q. What do the Detroit Lions & Billy Graham have in common?
A. They both can make 80,000 people stand up & yell "Jesus Christ" !
Q. How do you keep a Detroit Lion out of your yard?
A. Put up goal posts
Q. How can you tell when the Detroit Lions are going to run the football?
A. The halfback leaves the huddle with tears in his eyes.
Q. What's the difference between the Detroit Lions &
A. The Taliban have a running game
Q. Where do you go in Detroit in case of a tornado?
A. Ford Field - they never get a touchdown there!
Q. What do you call a Detroit Lion with a SuperBowl ring?
A. A thief
Q. Why doesn't Flint have a professional football team?
A. Because then Detroit would want one
Q. Why was Marty Mornhinweg upset when the Detroit Lions
playbook was stolen?
A. Because he hadn't finished coloring it.
Q. What's the difference between the Detroit Lions and a
A. You can still get four quarters out of a dollar
Q. How many Detroit Lions does it take to win a Superbowl?
A. Nobody knows and we may never find out!
Q. What do you call 47 people sitting around a TV watching
A. The Detroit Lions
Q. What do the Detroit Lions and opossums have in common?
A. Both play dead at home and get killed on the road
Q. How can you tell when the Detroit Lions are going to run
A. The back leaves the huddle with tears in his eyes.
Little David is in the 5th grade. Yesterday morning when the teacher asked the children what their fathers did for a living, all the typical answers came up: fireman, policeman, salesman, etc.
The teacher noticed that little David was being uncharacteristically quiet and so she asked him about his father.
"My father's an exotic dancer in a gay bar and takes off all his clothes in front of other men. Sometimes, if the offer's really good, he'll go out to the alley with some guy and do it with him for money."
The teacher, obviously shaken by this statement, hurriedly set the other children to work on some coloring, and took little David aside to ask him, "Is that really true about your father?"
"No," said David, red faced. "He plays for the Detroit Lions, but I was too embarrassed to say that in front of the other kids."
Tuesday, December 26, 2006
Toil has a great look to it with all kinds of great info for anyone who is starting out with a blog. Tons of neat stuff on the sidebar to look at. She writes extremely well and just seems to "Get it". Leave her a comment somewhere and I'm sure she'll take a look at your blog too.
What is Toil?
Toil is an ongoing discussion of all things: a place to find job discussion, interview tips, resume writing resources,work at home opportunities (WAHM), or reviews of products and services. Toil is also the story of my life in small snipets.
Thursday, December 21, 2006
Then again, even though the statistics show I should win by like 51432515 points, we all know that means nothing. Head to head match ups are a crap-shoot and it just seems like the best team rarely wins. We shall see.
Good luck. We're all counting on you.
Wednesday, December 20, 2006
This policy is designed to give the readers of my blog disclosure on some of my posts. Many of my posts are for pay and are specifically written for that purpose. Any product/service that I discuss here that is a post that gives me compensation will be for a product/service that I actually believe in and/or trust. I will not write about products that I believe are inferior, or really just plain useless. These posts are based on my opinion of these products. Only after checking them out will I actually post about them.
Not every post will be disclosed as one I receive compensation for. I am beginning to do it for every post, but I may not for a few.
Tuesday, December 19, 2006
This was the game I was worried about the Lions winning, but no more. I suppose I shouldn't have been worried since they haven't won a game at Lambeau in about 40 years.
Anyways it looks like the Chicago game could be a bit sketchy. They have home field locked up now so they probably won't be playing starters for most of the game. Not that it matters. Their reserves are probably as good as our starters :(.
Sunday, December 17, 2006
From New York:
Pretty funny seeing a bunch of Knicks reserves in the game with less than 2 minutes left and down by 20, but Denver still having most of their starters in.
Multiple players, including Anthony, threw punches, and New York's Nate Robinson and Denver's J.R. Smith -- fouled hard by Mardy Collins on the play that started the brawl -- flew into the first row of the crowd while fighting during the NBA's scariest scene since Indiana players fought with Detroit fans in 2004.
Yahoo! Sports Story
And there it is kids. We now get to hear all about how bad Detroit Pistons fans are again. I'd be suprised if they didn't just start showing that brawl everyday again and totally just forget about this one. After all Crymelo is part of Stern's new group of punks that gets away with everyhting.
I just traded for Crymelo in my fantasy NBA league and I hope he doesn't get suspended for more than a couple of games.
Now with the internet age and the ability to research for yourself an advisor isn't always necessary if you are willing to do a bit of research yourself. There is an abundance of information readily available to you on the net that you where you can compare to your current accounts as well as finding something new you may wish to add to those. From savings accounts, loans, insurance, to retirement plans. I know there are those out there that want to do it for themselves now so I might as well provide you with a few sources to help you understand and compare.
Take a look through those to start out with some ways to save yourself some money and then keep your research hat on to get what you need for you individually. Your parents aren't the same age as you and aren't in the same situation. It is likely that your co-workers aren't either so listening to their advice on what they did probably isn't going to be what is right for you.
Friday, December 15, 2006
Pretty impressive site. You can browse through by almost any means neccessary, be it by size, price, carat, color, or many others.
You probably don't want your girlfriend or wife to find this site because she will fall in love and you will be buying diamonds left and right. You could probably earn some points with her though if you introduced her to the Diamond Builder on the site. Put it this way. If there is a game you want to watch, tell her about this site and you will have an uninterupted one :D.
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
Very good interview and typical Jack Black. Hilarious. He takes a few shots at those who ruined metal and speaks about going on tour as well as the making of the movie. There is no better place to read celebrity interviews than Maxim. They steer their interviews into a realistic conversation instead of just a bunch of useless rehash you get from most other places.
After seeing Kevin Jones go down for the year I felt like going back and seeing a bit of Barry. You can really never go wrong with some Barry highlights. This video is a few minutes of some of his best moments. It is accompanied with a forgot favorite song of mine: Machinehead by Bush. Enjoy a little bit of the best RB ever.
I was searching for some coupons for my favorite online site, Buy.com the other day, and found a goldmine of online coupons all in one place for my shopping needs. Saved a bundle and bookmarked the site to boot.
The site is called CouponChief and they have TONS of online coupons that can be used for great discounts at the most popular stores on the web. Best Buy, Target, Circuit City, Amazon, and HUNDREDS of others.
Like I said my favorite store is Buy.com because they always have what I want and their prices are comparable with anyone. Their service is tremendous and I've never been disappointed.
Take a peek at CouponChief to stretch your holiday dollar much further than ever before.
Well it looks like my team is in good shape going in, but I did lose this week against one of the other 3 playoff teams. I finished with the best record in the league and the #1 seed. No major injuries and Colston has shown back up in the starting line up. Still can't believe Yahoo! has him as a TE. I have Todd Heap, but when you have Colston elligible there you can't complain. Tried to trade Heap all year.
Now before I list my team I have to tell you that I'm not full of crap here. This is an 8 team league and we kept 1 player. I kept LT and I got Tiki as my first pick because the Alexander owner had him last year. Going into the year I considered this a perfect team. LT is pretty much a one man team this year so I can't take too much credit, but my team is really to the point that upgrading anywhere is unlikely. Now I'm thinking aobut benching Tiki next week in favor of Jones-Drew or Deuce because they at least score once in a while. Rode Tiki all year. Is it time to make a change? I'm just waiting to see if Fragile Fred is out this week. If he is Tiki is going to the bench for Jones-Drew.
Here was my line-up from last week:
QB-P. Rivers (Chargers)
WR-T. Holt (Rams)
RB-L. Thomlinson (Chargers)
TE-T. Heap (Ravens)
W/R-T. Barber (Giants)
Going with Bulger against Oakland this week probably. Colston will be in there over Heap. Tiki is on the bubble depending on news.
So if you look at this team you wonder who the idiots have to be in my league to let me complile this team. Hey i offered a hell of a deal for LJ earlier in the year. Tiki and Holt straight up for him and the manager turned it down because I have LT already. I actually had a better team last year and lost in the first round. It was a tie. The tie breaker was TDs for the week. I had less. I lost. It was a travesty. I await the same fate this year as well.
Monday, December 11, 2006
Wasn't that a treat yesterday for circus and comedy fans? It was bad enough when Joey Ballgame came back to town and lit us up on Thanksgiving to win whatever random turkey award they gave away that day, but now Artose Pinner? 3 TDs for Pinner? A guy that wasn't even supposed to play and probably has about 5 carries all year?
Ahhh...yes it was classic Lions. One of the better comedic performances of this season I must admit. It seems everyone was playing team ball to secure that #1 pick.
It was great to see Pinner have his day. I always liked him as a Lion. Was sad to see him go really. Of course it still isn't really all that difficult to enjoy him sticking it in Millen's face on Sunday. Probably the happiest day of his career other than the day the Lions released him.
Game ball goes to: Jon Kitna for maximum douchebaggery and the refusal to win. Congratulations Jon!
Friday, December 08, 2006
Thursday, December 07, 2006
I have used Firefox and Opera almost exclusively for 4 or 5 years now, but have always had IE on my PC simply because it is needed for some things that may not work in the others. I also have to check a few different e-mail accounts from the same server often so I keep a few browsers open so I don't have to log in and out of them all the time.
Not sure how I feel about IE 7 yet, but I am pretty impressed so far comparitive to the old ways.
Monday, December 04, 2006
This has been a pretty disappointing year for Michigan sports I think. Sure most fans would be happy to see a team get to the World Series, one in the NBA Eastern Conference Finals, have their colleg football team in a major BCS Bow, and get to root for a team to lose as many games as possible in the NFL so they can get the #1 draft pick and possibly see the GM get fired.
Not me. Too many close, but no cigars this year.
Can't really hate on the Tigers. No one expected them to even have a .500 record. It was a dream season really. Still hurt to lose when you thought they were the better team. That's why they play the games they tell me from St. Louis.
The Pistons? They dominated the entire league all season and get bounced by the worst NBA Champion of all time. I can safely say that the Miami Heat was a Stern Title. No way should Fatione Walker, White Chocolate, The Mitten, and Kidney Mourning be allowed to win an NBA title. It is a disgrace and a shame. That team singlehandedly ruined my love of basketball for the time being.
Now this? Michigan getting jobbed for no other reason than no one wants to see a rematch? Oh no...we can't see the best 2 teams play again. That would not make everyone happy. I was under the impression that the BCS was there to get the 2 best teams int he title game. Apparently that is not the case. Great work NCAA.
It seems sports makes me more angry than happy these days. Dwayne "Baby jesus" Wade was named the SI Sportsman of the Year. Mr. Doubtful himself. HE has every nagging injury in the book according to him and yet he still goes out and wins Academy Awards for flopping. If he kicked you in the nuts in front of a cop he would get 2 free throws out of the deal and you would get a night in the clink.
Sunday, December 03, 2006
It is one sad day. The BCS has been exposed yet again. Did any of you watch
Take a look at some ballots from the Harris Poll that helped determine this debacle:
No. 1: Ohio State
No. 2: Louisville
No. 3: Florida
No. 4: Michigan
No. 1: Ohio State
No. 2: Boise State
No. 3: Michigan
No. 4: Wisconsin
No. 5: Florida
No. 1: Ohio State
No. 2: Michigan
No. 3: Wisconsin
No. 4: Louisville
No. 5: Florida
No. 1: Ohio State
No. 2: Florida
No. 3: Louisville
No. 4: Michigan
No. 1: Ohio State
No. 2: Florida
No. 3: USC
No. 4: Michigan
^^^LMAO! Are you freakin' kidding me!?
No. 3: LSU
Michigan will play USC in the Rose Bowl now. No one cares.
Say all you want about your
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Monday, November 27, 2006
Sunday, November 26, 2006
Monday, November 20, 2006
Now we have USC who moved up in a couple of polls. The consensus is that USC, and only USC really has a shot at jumping Michigan based on the computers. If they win out by defeating Notre Dame and UCLA in effect flipping them and Michigan in the remaining computer ranks they need. The pollsters seem to be leaning towards USC moving up in that scenario, also.
So as a long time Michigan fan I have to actually root for the hated Fighting Irish to take USC down. I can justify USC jumping htme if they win out. Michigan had their shot and USC in my mind is the only team that has a chance at getting the next one.
WE ARE N-D!
Sunday, November 19, 2006
The game was the greatest in many years. The two teams traded touchdowns and it came down to just a few miscues to decide the outcome.
No one can honestly say that
So we have one true contender undefeated along with a string of one loss teams that can get a shot at OSU for the title.
Michigan (Lost by 3 to the #1 team in the country on the road)
USC (Lost to a 7-4 Unranked Oregon St. team)
Florida (Lost to #11 LSU on the road by 10)
Notre Dame (THROTTLED at home by MICHIGAN)
Arkansas (THROTTLED by USC at HOME)
Based on just that information you have to decide who had the least embarrassing loss. It's pretty obvious.
Saturday, November 18, 2006
Everyone was shocked with the score. Ohio State 42 Michigan 39. Two of the best defenses in the country got torched for over 80 total points. OSU had over 500 total yards on offense.
Michigan had their chances. A drive stalled that resulted in a FG and the unsporstmanlike penalty on Crable decided the outcome. On a 3rd and long late in the 4th that would have gotten Michigan the ball, or at least held Ohio State to a FG changed the outcome with one penalty that allowed them to continue their drive and ultimately score the winning touchdown.
Heartbreaking loss for Michigan fans.
Friday, November 17, 2006
When the sun sets on the Horseshoe tomorrow, a path of destruction shall be left in the wake of a defense and a running game that packs bolts of lighting in every blow from the heavens.
Just enjoy the game, Lloyd. Bo has this one.
Thursday, November 16, 2006
Yup...this is going to be the biggest game ever played. I don't want to hear about any other game that has been played.
The biggest rivalry in sports comes this year with the two foes ranked #1 (
Winner takes all. Legends are born. Legacies are defined. Welcome to the Big Horseshoe, home of the Ohio State Suckeyes, the site of the biggest game to ever be played.
I have my OSU sticker in my toilet to pee on. I have Hail to the Victors piping out into my neighborhood 24 hours a day and refuse to answer the door when the cops show up to tell me to turn it off. My skin has a permablue sheen and the women have been packed off for the week for their own safety. Only way they ever comes back is with a Wolverine win.
I haven’t been watching all the games like I normally do, but caught last night's debacle and was far from impressed. Taking on a wounded New Orleans Hornets team and getting busted in the chops right out of the gate was embarrassing. Trailing by 15 at halftime the game was all but over.
Resurgence from Chauncey Billups helped get the Pistons in front late and the continued shoddy play of Lindsay Hunter off the bench pretty much lost that lead for the team. Hunter is the best offensive player on the opposing team typically. The Pistons had a chance to take the lead in the final minute, but clanked it off the rim to give the Hornets the final shot. Fouled called with 3 seconds left to put (who is this guy?) Hilton Armstrong at the line who made the first and missed the second. He then proceeded to slap his own shot back out to the perimeter for the Hornets to rebound. Game Over. Pistons lose to a team of rookies.
Through 8 games the team looks really out of sorts. Sitting in the bottom 5 of the league in scoring and not even in the top half of the league in scoring defense. The lost art of Pistons defense is true to form it appears for the year.
Nazr looks lost. Flip
I guess we can expect the slow start from the addition of new players, but last night's loss is a complete shame. Bring back the teal jerseys.
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
A bit of a keeper league with some of my WeRollHard.com counterparts is underway.
We kept 2 from last season with 8 teams in the league. I stunk last year so I traded everything ii had to get Lebron James and Shawn Marion. Basically the top 2 ranked players. KG can be there sometimes too.
So we decided to go with a random draft order and I got the shaft by getting the last pick. Figured I did OK, but my Center situation is a bit sketchy for now.
PG, SG, G, SF, PF, F, C, Util, Util, BN, BN, BN, BN
3PTM, PTS, REB, AST, ST, BLK, TO
PG Jason Kidd
SG Larry Hughes
G Mike Bibby
SF Shawn Marion
PF Dwight Howard
F Lebron James
C Zaza Pachulia
UTIL Stephon Marbury
UTIL Troy Murphy
BN Morris Peterson
BN Adam Morrison
BN Ricky Davis
BN Pau Gasol-He's my real Center, but he's out until January :(
Either way I started out winning my first 2 weeks and well on my way to win the 3rd. Team is certainly stout, but I may need to get some scoring later on. I'm hoping that Morrison will be a 20 PPG chucker soon enough. Marbury looks like his career is done. The guy is playing like Lindsay Hunter.
Monday, November 13, 2006
Oh well. Only one game matters right now. OSU vs. Michigan.
Thursday, November 09, 2006
There you have it folks.
So....what happens now? You guessed it.
So.....what's the deal pollsters?
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
I stumbled across this site from some random ad around the net and found it rather intriguing.
The premise of it is that you can lend your money directly to other people that you would otherwise have sitting in a savings account. Now don't get a head of yourself and start thinking that this is crazy and how you don't think this could work.
What is going on here is that Zopa is like a middle man. They will do background checks on lenders before you lend them your money. Unlike a bank where you may pull in 4% for a savings account while they lend your money out to borrowers, on Zopa your money is lent out to borrowers, but they pay you the lending rate. So on average they are claiming that your return is roughly 7% rather than the 4% you would get from a savings account. They have basically eliminated the bank and are a service that does background checks on borrowers that you can lend to rather than banks doing these checks and lending your money to borrowers and keeping all the profit. With Zopa you get the lending return, not some bank.
Get it now? Isn't this an interesting idea? I thought so at least.
AT this point it is only in the
Of course many won't be interested in such an idea, or trusting enough, but none the less I find it to be a very fascinating new concept for the use of the internet and hope that the company is able to succeed.
Monday, November 06, 2006
I'm getting a little ahead of myself, but there has been a lot of talk out there about who should be #2 after the
WVU was picked by many to win the title this year based on their easy schedule with only
So the question that has been going around recently is whether or not
The championship game is going to be played on November 18th. We can all agree on that, but should the loser drop below #2 in the BCS? IT really depends on the voters for the most part. Both OSU and
Now we have
What the hell happens if
Now do I believe that either of those 2 teams are better than teams like
Playoffs. Playoffs. Playoffs. We need them. This is another year that will feature most likely a deserved undefeated team in the BCS Championship game and possibly a one loss team. The BCS system is said that it will pick who is the best team to make that game, but clearly a
One more week for each team to set the match up undefeated. Michigan has to beat a 2-8 Indiana team while OSU has to beat out a 3-7 Northwestern team this week. Both teams have pulled a couple of upsets this year, but are ranked well in the bottom 1/4 of college football. Illinois has some decent talent, however they are still a year away. Watch out for them in the next couple of years.
Friday, November 03, 2006
Thursday, November 02, 2006
On a side note...Big Ben was dominated by Dwight Howard yesterday to the tune of 27 points and 11 boards. He had a measly 4 points and 5 rebounds. Earn that money Ben!
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
I haven't paid too much attention to my boys all summer, but I'm getting kind of hyped for the opener tonight against the Bucks. Can't wait to see what our offense looks like with Big Ben winning the lotto with his contract over in Chi-Town.
Having a hard time getting back into the NBA after the joke that was the Miami Heat winning the title last season. The rule changes and the Wade love is making me hate the league again. The man Rasheed Wallace is going to probably be suspended half the year now since the new "whine" rule has been implemented. We will see how that rolls off tonight. Sheed can't keep his mouth shut. Big Ben was pretty vocal last year too and honestly just annoyed me.
3 all-stars in the starting 5 and the great Antonio McDyess coming in off the bench makes the squad a solid contender still. The acquisition of Nazr "I haven't done crap" Mohammed is a bit sketchy, but Flip Murray was a nice pick up. Only a year too late. Should have had him here last year. The owner Davidson is a cheapskate and traded away our bench to save a few bucks last season and cost us big. Joe D is starting to look human now. That trade of Darko last year is going to straight up kill us down the road unless we get a big time pick from
Well...Let's get this bitch rollin' boys.
BACK TO THE FINALS!
Today is the release day for the new AZ album. AZ is one of my favorite artists and is like my new 2Pac of this era. His style is similar to the man himself, Nas to give you an idea about him. His last album A.W.O.L. was probably the best rap CD I have listened to in the past few years.
The Format is more of the same. Strong lyrically with solid beats. The dude just has great flow lyrically and I love to listen to him. A few cameos on the album include Little Brother for the track Rise and Fall, M.O.P. on Sit Em Back Slow, and DJ Premier for the title track The Format.
Based on 2 full listens so far I haven't picked out my favorite, but I'd say that the M.O.P. track is my least favorite. Don't like the fool. The DJ Premier collab on The Format cash money. Doing That is a great track too as well as the first one in I Am the Truth.
Overall I'd say it is comparable to A.W.O.L.
Jimi Morrison's Head says: "BUY IT NOW!", or whatever it is you do ;).
With a Halloween release and me never even paying attention to this game until the 30th I decided to head to Wal-Mart and pick it up at . I'm glad I did.
I started playing Final Fantasy games on the Playstation One so I'm pretty much a FF noob. First one I played was FF VIII and have never played the great American FF fanboy game FFVII. Other than FF VIII the only ones I've played are FFX and FF X-2. FFX is probably one of my top 5 favorite games of all time. Played it through at least 6 times. FFX-2 was fun, but I never really got into it and have yet to finish it either.
There are 2 different versions of this game. There is the regular and a Collector's Edition out right now. The Collector's Edition comes in a tin case and has a bonus DVD with a History of Final Fantasy video, interviews from developers, game art, etc. Most of that stuff will probably be on Youtube with in a week so unless you are a hardcore Final Fantasy fan the extra $10 that the CE costs might not be worth it for you. The strategy guide also has a Limited Edition. Apparently there are 8 of these with each cover having a different character. The LE guide also has quite a bit of extra art in it. From what I've heard they are very nice. They are packaged so you really don't get to pick the one you want unless you know the color covers and such.
Like all the others I start them and then start them over when there is enough walkthrough information on the net to allow me the ability to find everything in one play through. Since I got this on the release I have just been finding things out for myself. I've got 12 playing hours in according to my save slots as we speak so I guess I'll try and give some of my first impressions on it so far. Quite a bit to cover, but I'll try to keep it short and to the point. Probably won't though. I'll start with the gameplay as I think this game has some great new features and is really the best part of the game.
At first the game was rather confusing with the new battle system and the changes in the leveling. Of course this is nothing new as every one of these I've played had a completely new system. In this instance I was not a fan of the battle system initially and thought I would end up hating it. The learning curve on it was rather long compared to previous titles and I'd say it took me about 3 hours of game time to catch on to it.
At this point I absolutely love the battle system now that I've caught on. There are some really interesting aspects to it. If you have played FF XI I guess the system should be relatively similar to you. The battlefield is more of an MMORPG than anything. There are no random battles anymore. You can actually see the enemies and can judge for yourself prior to engaging with them if it is a good idea or not. There is a good balance of enemies in each are with ones you can't possibly beat at the beginning that you should just stay clear of.
The battle system is called Active Dimension Battle (ADB). IT is still pretty much a turn based system, but has the feel of real-time. When in battle you can move your character around freely and even try to run away if you get into trouble. No "Flee" command is entered, you just run away on your own. The battle menu to select an action is brought up at any time on the battlefield by pressing the "X" button. All the standard attacks are there with Magick (Yes that is spelled right), items, and Technicks which are your abilities such as steal. All of these attacks can be done on the fly and when selected an active ATB gauge fills up before the action is done. When actions are selected there is no need to enter the action again during the battle. For example if you selected "Attack" your character will continue to attack until the enemy is defeated with no further commands needed.
Later on there is something available called "Espers" which are the summonings in this game. Also, you have the ability to perform "Quickenings" which are ultimately this game's version of Overdrives. Each character has unique Quickenings. I have not yet achieved any of these and can't go into much detail about them.
You have control over your entire party and can change the leader at any time while on the battlefield. What is unique about your party in FFXII is a system that they call Gambit. The Gambit system is a programmable interface that allows you to program your party members to do certain actions in certain situations. These actions will be performed when certain conditions are met in a battle and they start through their Gambit system when the leader (you) engages a battle. For example, you may program a party member to heal other allies when a condition is met. You could have a Gambit that says: "Ally HP<70%>
The leveling in the game is that same as usual where you earn leveling point by defeating enemies. Also, when fighting enemies you earn what is called "Licensing Points". Licensing points in the FFXII world is what you use to learn and use abilities. There is a chess board accessible for each character on the menu under "Licensing" with various skill and abilities you can learn. As you gain License Points you can spend them to upgrade and learn abilities. You can move from say "Swords 1" to "Swords 2" to allow you wield stronger swords, upgrade accessories, magicks, and learn technicks. More powerful skills are only available once the earlier ones are learned (licensed). An interesting concept and something that is similar to the Sphere Grid to FFX, but much more simplified. You don't upgrade actual player attributes here as those increase by leveling up in battle.
Graphically the game is similar to FFX for its patented cut scenes and the player models are comparable to the ones from FFX. I am of the opinion that they look much better, but others feel they are not. To each his own. What are most amazing in the game are the environments. Graphically they are superb. From the cities to the deserts to the dungeons the environments are fantastic. They literally blow FFX graphics away here.
The musical score is also very good. It is classic Final Fantasy music and gives the game a nice feel all the way through. I haven't heard any J-Pop yet so hopefully those patented FF love songs that we are accustomed to hearing will not surface.
Plenty of side-quests once again. There is a pretty interesting one that puts you into the role of a monster assassin. Boards in cities display what more or less can be described as Wanted posters for particular fiends and you then go out and hunt them down. Defeat them and return to the one that posted the monster to receive some sort of reward. Very fun side-quest. As far as I know there are about 80 of these hunts so it should be a solid quest. Since I do not have a guide and one is not available I can't really say as to what other side-quests are there, but there are certainly many more.
Gil, the name of Final Fantasy money in this game seems a bit hard to come by. It is obtained a bit differently here. Instead of fiends out in the desert actually carrying wallets around with them and dropping Gil they actually drop items that you would expect from them. Total common sense here. Monsters with money are absurd. Selling these items, or "Loot" as it is called gains you not only Gil, but if enough of these are sold it opens up the ability to purchase more rare items from shop owners. These are called Bazaar. On the shop menu it is on the bottom below the Buy and Sell links. This should be rather detailed so I am anticipating the time someone makes an online guide for the Loot so I know what the heck to sell and what I'd get. The strategy guide is said to have all this information listed.
Well that's pretty much most of the gameplay info. If I missed anything oh well. I think that gives you a decent idea as to what the game involves from the gameplay standpoint. I guess I'll describe a bit of the characters and the story now for those that will like watching the movie that is Final Fantasy XII.
The story is set in a sort of a medieval time and there is a war raging. Your people have been captured by a neighboring empire and now you are pretty much second class citizens. You play as Vaan, a 17 year old that is like every other Final Fantasy character in the leading role. He's girly and he is skinny. Reminds me of Leonardo DiCaprio pretty much. From my experience so far I do not find him annoying and he is definitely and upgrade from Tidus in FFX. The voice acting is very well done. So...I guess Vaan is out to save his people from the evil empire and meet some other friends along the way.
The Princess Ashe who lost her new husband in the war. The loyal Knight Basch branded a traitor who has been accused of murdering the King. Penelo is a 17 year old girl who is a friend of Vaan's and is kind of just around sometimes. Balthier is the pimp in the game and is described as a dashing sky pirate. He is basically a thief looking for treasure. His partner in the sky is a girl named Fran. She is of some form that they call a Vierra. Considered a master of weapons and she is scantily clad. These Vierra girls all wear like bunny ears on their heads so you can imagine that they are rather Playboy Bunny like.
I haven't been through much of the story thus far so to make any statement about it being good or bad would be silly. It appears that it is a much more mature story this time around, however. I am excited to see how it plays out and if it will be one of the greats. I definitely like the theme thus far. It has a feel of a mix between Lord of the Rings and a bit of Star Wars. A mixture that would be hard to fail with I assume. We shall see.
According to most sources the game should last around 70 hours with out doing side-quests or extras. With all of the extras it has risen to the 100-120 hour range. If you are a perfectionist type like me I would probably expect a good 150 hours worth of play time.
Based on how much I've played so far I think the game is fantastic. Going in with no expectations and a really no background on the game before I bought it I was pleasantly surprised with all I've seen so far. I look forward to a riveting story, but the gameplay is so great that I would still play it even if the story was rather dense. All of the reviews so far have given this game an average of about 9.2/10 so the consensus out there is that it is a great game. Lowest score I have seen was an 8, but the review was quite negative. From the sounds of gamers and reviewers so far I'd say that most will love the game and a select few will not be happy with it for whatever reason.
Jimi Morrison's Head says: "BUY IT NOW!"
Monday, October 30, 2006
I'm in a league of 8 with some guys for the 3rd year. Everyone chipped in $30 and the winner takes all except $30 to runner up. So you pretty much win $180 to take the league after you exclude your entry fee. We kept ONE player from last season so I kept the great Ladanian Tomlinson. If I lose this league it will be a travesty of epic proportions. No negatives in this league so turnovers don't mean jack.
The stat categories and roster spots go like this:
QB, WR, WR, RB, TE, W/R, K, DEF, BN, BN, BN, BN, BN, BN
Passing Yards (25 yards per point)
Passing Touchdowns (6)
Rushing Yards (10 yards per point)
Rushing Touchdowns (6)
Reception Yards (10 yards per point)
Reception Touchdowns (6)
Return Touchdowns (6)
2-Point Conversions (2)
Offensive Fumble Return TD (6)
Field Goals 0-19 Yards (3)
Field Goals 20-29 Yards (3)
Field Goals 30-39 Yards (3)
Field Goals 40-49 Yards (4)
Field Goals 50+ Yards (5)
Point After Attempt Made (1)
Fumble Recovery (2)
Block Kick (2)
Kickoff and Punt Return Touchdowns (6)
Points Allowed 0 points (10)
Points Allowed 1-6 points (7)
Points Allowed 7-13 points (4)
Points Allowed 14-20 points (1)
Points Allowed 21-27 points (0)
Points Allowed 28-34 points (-1)
Points Allowed 35+ points (-4)
So let's take a look at my All-Pro team:
TE-M. Colston (Qualifies at TE in Yahoo leagues.)
BN-R. Moss (WR)
BN-D. McAllister (RB)
BN-L. Coles (WR)
BN-M. Bulger (QB)
BN-T. Heap (TE)
BN-M. Bell (RB)
So check this out. I drafted the bears as the 3rd defense off the board. I got Tiki in the first round because the guy that had him last year kept Shawn Alexander. I plucked Colston off of the free agent list early in the year. Some other moron actually dropped Randy Moss so I got him with my waiver priority. Someone just dropped Reggie Brown too so he might be on my team soon as well.
Right now if you can believe it my team is only 5-3 after this week. Not really a bad thing since I didn't bother filling in my bye slots at TE or defense and played the big scorer the 2 weeks that Tiki and LT were on byes. What's most amazing is that I have amassed 864 points thus far while the next closest guy in the league has a measly 732. I actually scored almost 100 points more than anyone else in the league in Week 6 by racking up an impressive 179 points that week.
I really can't even make a trade because there isn't anything I can upgrade at other than my 2nd RB, but even that is a risk. I tried to get Alexander for nothing a few weeks back, but that didn't go through and it appears it was for the better. Waivers are stacked as you can imagine so my reserve RBs change almost weekly. At this point in the season I have 5 of the top 14 ranked players according to Yahoo rankings. LT, Eli, Holt, Bulger, and Colston. Not too shabby.
Though I should be able to dominate in the playoffs it is weekly match ups so anything can happen. I will be truly disappointed if I lose out once again this year. Last year I got knocked out with a similar team in the first week of the playoffs in a match up that I tied in points. The tie-breaker was Total TDs for the week and I lost by 1. Total bummer and I will be quite pissed if it happens again this year. I couldn't have assembled a better team.
Sunday, October 29, 2006
I didn't watch Game 5. I couldn't let myself do it. For Game 4 I DVR'd it and watched it the next morning. Right when I awoke and it ruined my day. The whole game they had control and blew it with defense. I hear Game 5 was similar. I haven't seen any highlights. I haven't looked at box scores. I can't bear it. I do it with all my teams. If they get this far and lose I just stop following the media until the next season starts. I've been that way with the Pistons the last couple of years. Every time I think about it I start to feel sick.
The Tigers were supposed to be different. Just like that surprise Pistons team a few years ago that went out and got RaSheed Wallace before the deadline. I kind of knew that team was going to win it all the second that trade went through. The Tigers were a bit more of a wait and see, but they pitched their asses off until the very end. In the end it appears youthful inexperience cost us plenty. I heard there was another pitcher error in Game 5. Lead to a run. I'm not checking this mind you. Only reason I even hear these things is because I wear a Detroit Tigers hat everywhere and have been for the last 6 years. Everyone feels it is necessary to bring it up.
Let me tell you this. If you see a guy that has a Tigers hat on at this point in time leave them alone. They love the team and are sick right now. Joking with them is not funny. They may actually resort to violence. I only tell you this for your own safety. You may think it is ha-ha real funny mother $#!@er, but not in the least to me. Shut your mouth and back away once you see my face. Don't say a thing to me until spring training. Even then don't talk about last season unless it involves statistics. REGULAR SEASON statistics.
OK...When it is due it is due. I like the Cardinals. I am not upset they won. I am upset that we lost. They fought hard and came up with a title. I respect that. They were touted as the worst World Series team ever. Now they must be the worst World Series Champs. That is awesome. The Pistons were the worst NBA Champs a few years back. I sure as hell didn't care about the lack of respect and Cards fans probably won't either. YOU ARE WORLD CHAMPS. Congrats Cards fans. You are TRUE baseball fans. You deserve it.
Friday, October 27, 2006
Game 4 of the 2006 World Series was with in the grasp of the heroes from Motown, however some defensive miscues sealed their fate late in the game.
An ugly 7th inning set the tone for the Tigers when Eckstein lead off the inning with a hard hit line drive to center field. Curtis Granderson slipped on the wet grass, falling down to miss his chance at catching the ball for an out. Instead Eckstein ended up at 2nd with yet another Cardinal's double. A So Taguchi bunt to get Eck over to third was fielded by Fernando Rodney, however he decided that the out wasn't worth getting and floated the ball over 1st baseman Sean Casey's glove which allowed Eck to score and Taguchi to get to 2nd. The Cards wound up taking the lead 4-3 over the Tigers for the first time in the game.
The Tigers rallied back in their half of the 8th to tie it up, but in the Cards half Craig Monroe blew an opportunity to end the inning by taking a bad route to a fly ball which scored another Cards run. 5-4 Card after 8 and only 3 outs for the Tigers to tie or win.
Adam Wainwright pitched a perfect 9th for the Cards to finish off the comeback victory and give the Cardinals a 3-1 series lead.
Same old Tigers it appears in the World Series this season. After having one of the better defensive teams all year they pitchers have made them look like one of the worst by fumbling and bumbling important outs late in ballgames to cost us wins.
Game 5 is Friday, weather permitting, and the Cards are going to skip Reyes to give the ex-Tiger Jeff Weaver his 2nd start of the series. Weaver pitched in Game 2, the only Tigers victory. He will face rookie Justin Verlander who was out dueled in Game 1 by the rookie Anthony Reyes. Verlander had a spectacular rookie season winning 17 games and is a show in for the AL Rookie of the Year. That will set up the masterful Chris Carpenter for Game 6, against the crafty veteran Kenny Rogers if the Tigers can somehow put together a complete ballgame.
Jeremy Bonderman pitched a decent game, but was pulled after 1 out in the 6th for Fernando Rodney with men on 1st and 3rd. Rodney struck out both men he faced in the 6th.
Thursday, October 26, 2006
They tried to get it in, but to no avail yesterday. Thank God it wasn't either because I wouldn't have gotten to sleep last night.
So now what happens is that the rest of the games will be played with no breaks in between. If the Tigers can somehow win a couple and take it back home Game 6 will be played with the loss of a travel day and a grumpy crew of players.
It doesn't look to promising for the game tonight either according to weather reports so the World Series may go even longer than expected into next week. Not good news for the Tigers if they may have to face Carpenter another time at least if they force it to Game 7, but possibly even more if the weather forces more delays.
At least Kenny Rogers can put some pine tar on his hand for an extra start and extra rest.
Oh yeah that reminds me. Pine tar. Kenny Rogers. Dirtgate.
Whatever. Tony LaRussa said it was no big deal. The players said it was no big deal. The MLB said it was no big deal. It's done. It's over. All the players in the league use an edge like this and unless some Cardinal fan announcing team opens their mouths about it no one ever sees it. ESPN will never let it go as usual. They beat everything to death and they are considered by me and many others to be a complete joke.
With 2 Cardinal fans in the booth for every game I want fair representation. Joe Buck (Mr. High Horse) and McCarver (Mr. Mouth) the coverage is completely biased. I want my Tiger announcers for the next 3 games. They are also Fox employees as well.
Here's to Mario Impemba and Rod Allen for Games 4,5, and 6!
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
Well...Game 3 of the 2006 World Series wasn't the greatest day for me. Chris Carpenter dominated my boys by throwing 8 scoreless innings and basically making our guys look like fools at the plate.
I am not too worried. Manager Jimmy Leyland has a method to his madness I believe. He tends to use our worst pitcher against their best in the playoffs so far. Nate Robertson got the start against Chris Carpenter who is the reigning NL Cy Young. So I suppose Jim went the right direction as Carpenter shut us down and we used our worst pitcher against him so no harm no foul. We had to use him eventually so might as well have him eat a few innings in this one.
Now we get to run our top guys out against their lower end pitchers who we should be able to hit. Bonderman goes in Game 4 against Suppan in
GO TIGERS! BRING THE TITLE TO MOTOWN! BLESS YOU BOYS!
Thursday, October 19, 2006
Bill Bryson wrote book I read recently.
A Short History of Nearly Everything
I highly recommend it. It is a very easy read and is quite informative. Like the title says it covers quite an array of topics, but doesn't really feel like he is leaving anything out. It speaks of many different sciences and takes a peak into many of the mysteries we have been challenged with throughout history.
Anyone who enjoys science should find this book at least entertaining. Even those who don't should find it interesting as it flows quite well. I would compare it to a modern day A Brief History of Time by Steven Hawking in its ease to read for even the least scientifically gifted.
Jimi Morrison's Head says: "Buy it or check it out NOW!"