Let’s see, where to begin?

A while ago (just before notification that we were moving out), I agreed to help Alibyte, an Australian Word Racer friend of mine. Her friend was ordering a fancy candle from Holland House Candles. Since they live in Australia, shipping would have been $150. So, they had it shipped to me and I shipped it to them for $45 or so. Anu (Alibyte’s friend) was nice enough to send a box of truffles as thanks, but they didn’t arrive in great condition. Apparently the shipping company blatantly ignored the “Keep out of direct heat” warnings on the box. KrisDi and I scraped up a bit of chocolate and then gave up. It was nice of her to send them, though.

I actually went to church this Easter. It wasn’t too horribly bad. I spent most of my time making faces at the little girl sitting in front of me. Either she was making faces at me first, or she was teething. Either way, I started making faces back, and eventually learned that she’s currently unable to wink, despite her best efforts, and also is rather unskilled at fluttering her eyelids.

Housing…we found a nearby one at an acceptable price (more than it’s worth, but nearby and easy and available and nice, and actually big enough). But the owner doesn’t want to rent to us because we don’t want to live there forever and ever. We looked at two other houses, one for $2000 and one for $1900, within a block of each other and *exactly* the same floor plan (too small). A last one, a little older, for $2000 and farther out than we really want to live, is big enough. That’s currently our best bet, if you ask me. I’m sick of this. I just want to sign a friggin lease and move. I’m totally short term anyway. I’m ready to move out of this state. August 11 is the day I start looking for a new job. Speaking of which, I’m going to have to hire my mother to professionalize my resume.

— The rest of this is about the video game, so it probably doesn’t interest most of you —

I broke down and bought the expensive-ass (~$300) video card so I could play Oblivion. That’s what I’ve been spending most of my time on since (aside from looking for houses, but I think the scale is tipping toward Oblivion anyhow). The video card turned out to be a trial. I learned when I opened my computer that my northbridge processor cooling fan had died, and initially I couldn’t physically insert the video card into its slot because the RAM retaining clip things interfered. I replaced the fan with a pretty blue passive cooling device (i.e. heatsink — one of these without a fan), and eventually got the card to fit.

Oh my, that game is pretty. I’m probably not seriously taxing my system, running pretty much at the defaults (1024×768), but it’s so pretty. Character generation is not a matter of choosing a face and a hair style. Appearance is defined by a large set of variables, which are changed through slide bars. These variables include things like forehead height, heaviness of jaw, thinness of lip, width of nose bridge, space between eyes, wideness of eyes, these sorts of things. So you can sit there and slide a bar back and forth as your character morphs from purse-mouthed to pouty and wide- to beady-eyed. It’s freakin’ neat. And that’s just character generation.

As you walk through the fields, the wind blows the grass and trees. You can pick up and toss objects. If you bump into something (like a broom), it’ll fall down, and stay down until someone picks it up. When you shoot your enemies with arrows, the arrows visibly stick out of them. When you walk through a fire (or get shot with fire magic), you burst into flame. When it rains, you can see the ripples on the surface of standing water. When you strike your enemy with a strong blow, he is physically knocked back (or sideways, or down). If you trick an enemy into a trap that was set for you, it will spring on him. Just all kinds of coolness. Just thought I’d share that.

Unfortunately, the game tends to be a bit crashy. Of course, this is just like Morrowind and Daggerfall. Just save a lot and it’s not so bad. It can be pretty frustrating, though.

Anyway, I uploaded some screenshots. Not all the screenshots I took worked (I don’t know why, but I think the naming scheme isn’t perfect, and some got over-written), but here’s where they start. They’re all explained (sort of) in the captions.


Posted by snaotheus


I will have to see is Fox wants this game….
It looks cool as shit!

I am sorry about the house stuff….

Wilmbo De Norte

*DROOL* mmmmmmm Oblivion……..

C’mon Bonus Check!!! I wanna play with the pretty pretty physics!!!

Heather Cory

Ummm…my reply is not about your game or whatever. I didn’t know you were going to be looking for a new job and that you were planning on leaving California. Hmm interesting. How come you are looking for a new job, just hate your old one or what? I guess I am being too nosey but I am work and have nothing better to do than to pry.

So *that*’s why you were determined to stick out three years. Makes sense to me. 🙂 I don’t know that you could get back in the government any old time, but they do give you bonus points for having worked for the government before.

The good news is that even Seattle housing prices will seem cheap to you after California. And Northwest people mostly pretty nice, and MUCH more considerate drivers (most of them). And, as you know, it *does* rain and snow here. And the best part is that the snow stays on the mountains, so you can go play in it when you want to and come home when you’re tired. 🙂

Got to go back to my fresh Copper River salmon now… 😀

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