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Hickinbottom’s Aussie Ramblings

Archive for November, 2007

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Posted by captainbeaky on November 21, 2007

This blog will be closing down for a while from now until whenever. I received news this morning that my Dad has passed away. It may sound strange to make a blog post at a time like this, but I just dont know what to do. I feel so helpless and lonely out here right now.  For what is worth, his name was David, and I’ll miss him more than he’ll ever know xxx

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Quickie!

Posted by captainbeaky on November 20, 2007

Just a quick post to say I HAVENT forgotten to post today, Im jsut waiting to hear news about our house selling, which SHOULD be in the next few hours. If not, I’ll do a bumper, extra big, special edition post tomorrow! There actually IS stuff to say this time too! 

Posted in Nothing | 1 Comment »

Im Melting! MEEEELLLTIIIIIING!

Posted by captainbeaky on November 19, 2007

weather.jpgJebus Christ, it was hot today! 37 degrees hot!!! By comparison, it doesnt quite look (thanks for the photo Andy!) that hot back in the West Midlands! I cant believe its snowing there already, its obscene! On the flipside, everyone is quite surprised just how hot it is here. The only downside is that the hot weather, and Southern winds have blown in a load of Flies from New South Wales. Its not so bad when you first go out, as the insect repellant shoo’s ’em off, but that only lasts for 4 hours. Gets very annoying after that! However, 37 degrees with flies is preferable to snow and misery! Its meant to rain a little tomorrow and teh day after, but back up to 33 degrees by the weekend. 

Feeling better today too. Still fed up of not having a job, but just trying to be positive about it. Keep on looking, keep on waiting. Went into town today and braved the heat. Picked up a George Grill for cheap, and got a copy of Mass Effect for the 360, which I’ll be taking for a spin in a bit. Just let my tea go down. A VERY tasty tea I might add, of dim sum (which for whatever reason is called dim sim over here) but we got some separate gyoza (pork dumpling type things). Damn tasty, as I said. All washed down with an ice cold Magners! 

Not sure what are plans are for tomorrow, especially if its going to be wet. Our internet should, and I say SHOULD, be sorted tomorrow, so I will have chance to play online, and download the months worth of UK TV we’ve missed. But thats all assuming everything will be sorted, and based on my experience with telecoms companies here, I dont think it will be.  

Posted in Gadgets, Games, Oz, UK | Leave a Comment »

Stop……Potter Time!

Posted by captainbeaky on November 18, 2007

winner06pet.jpgYou see, how bored Ive become! I sat through another Harry Potter film today! After reluctantly watching The Prisoner of Azerbaijan last year, I found I actually enjoyed it. A good family film. So I willfully went to see the last film, of which I cant remember the name. It had dragons, and somebody died at the end. Anyway, I thought it was crap. A boring waste of my life. So this week, the latest Potter film came out on DVD, and seeing as Becca missed it at the cinemas, for whatever reason, I said we would hire it and give it a go. That day was today…and to be fair, it wasnt TOO bad. Not as good as Azerbaijan,  but better than the last film. 

In other news, it seems that “Sweet” popcorn doesnt really exist over here. Went to get some for the DVD, but all they had was Butter/Salt. Manky! Ended up getting caramel popcorn, which is just as tasty as sweet, but it just makes me feel double-fat.

Not done anything at all again today. Save the pennies. Hot and REALLY humid outside today. They’d forecast thunderstorms today,  but they never arrived, hence the atmos. Getting a bit annoying now, this not having a job lark. Need things to keep me occupied. 

OUCH! The weather forecast tomorrow is hot, sunny and 37 degrees!!!! THIRTY SEVEN!!!!  

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Like the photo says….

Posted by captainbeaky on November 17, 2007

cnr_meh.jpgShortest post ever today. Ive done nothing yet Im exhausted. Im fed up of not having a job. And Im fed up of house selling nonsense. Thats about everything Ive got to say for today – hopefully I’ll be more “chipper” tomorrow.

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Things…

Posted by captainbeaky on November 17, 2007

all-good-worf.jpg

First off, the only reason youre seeing the picture you are is because I put a search into Google Images for “Things” and this is one the items that cropped up! Looks like he’s doing the “mashed potato”!

Gonna be a short one as Im pretty tired right now forma  day walking around, and its 1am here. Went out to meet the forum folks and had a really good night.  Both of the folks we met (Jen and [great Aussie name]) Bruce were really nice and friendly. Easy to talk to, and both liked food and drink. Learnt a bunch of stuff, amongst which, we found that Grange Hill was shown over here in the late 80’s/early 90’s. Bruce remembered Bronson, Mrs McClusky, Zammo, Gardener, Big Trev et al! Superb! Probably be seeing them soon for some amusing nights on around St Kilda. Above all else, it was just great to MEET people. Feels like such a weight lifted now, as not having met anyone for so long, you start to think about whether your some sort of social leper. I feel much happier now.

As for the house stuff I mentioned in the previous post, its still kind of up in the air but I can at least elaborate on whats gone on. Everything has gone through fine up until now, when some environmental report was requested by the buyers solicitor. As we had no info on this, we asked the council for stuff about the land. They have nowt either, so the buyer refused to sign the completion papers. Cutting a long story short, My Dad is having to pay for this survey to be done on Monday (19th) and HOPE that nothing has been discovered by it. It thought it would be ok, but apparently, Kings Heath was built on a former brickworks so there may be some landfill issues. I dunno what that means, I just know it jeopordises the sale of our house so Im worried. On one hand, we’ve lived there for 7 years with no issues but on the other hand, Im almost 100% sure that an environmental survey was NOT carried out when we 1st got the house. Whether this was because we had a crap solicitor, or whether its a new requirement, I dont know. I just know I will be on tenter hooks until next Tuesday (Wednesday our time) until the reports due.  Fingers crossed eh?

Posted in Nothing, UK | Leave a Comment »

If you dont like games, look away…..now!

Posted by captainbeaky on November 16, 2007

e1.jpgI’ll be doing 2 posts today (you lucky people) as a lot of stuff has happened, or will happen. The first post, will be about games stuff, the 2nd,….well, about normal things. But more of that later.

So today I went to that Games Expo thingy at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre. I was a bit underwhelmed by the size of the place. I was expecting some massive multiple roomed venue, which it wasnt. The convention centre itself was huge, but the Games thingy was only in one room. However, there were some pretty good stands to have a look around. Not too busy as well which helped, although I dread to think what it will be like over the weekend. 

On the games fronts, I got to see, and play a lot on many formats. On the Wii there was Mario Galaxy, Metroid Prime 3, The Resident Evil light gun game (which I cant remember the name of), and Rayman Rabbids 2, which was fantastic! They had a bunch of other stuff too, but Im only listing the things that I played on or impressed me. For XBox, they didnt really have much. Assassins Creed and Mass Effect looked great though. Out of the big 3 console manufacturers, Microsofts stand was by far the crappiest. Having a 15 foot high Master Chief helmet doesnt make your stand good! For PS3, there was Wipeout HD, Gran Tourismo 5 Prologue, Haze, Uncharted :Drakes somethingorother  Singstar, and surprisingly Ratchet & Clank looked good. For PC, Crysis and Unreal Tournament 3 looked fantastic. It actually made me want to have another PC for gaming, as I quite miss the days of Battlefield etc… Also worthy of mention was God of War for PSP. It looked, and played great, but the controls were a little rsi inducing compared to the PS2. 

The highlight of my day though was an hour long presentation by a couple of guys from 2K Games, Australia who were the guys who made BioShock. They talked about the games early builds, problems, concepts and its development cycle, right up until release. Was extremely informative, and good to see what could have been. Interesting things of note were the fact that in an early demo the little sisters were slug like creatures that were actually deposited into the game world from a massive central “Queen” type creature who “laid” these Gatherers around the game world. These were dropped as the developers wanted the player to emote with the gatherers, or to feel guilty about killing them. So the first idea they had to try to get you to feel empathy with these guys was to make the little sisters, dogs with wheels! You know, when you see a dog that has no back legs, and it has wheels instead! They even had a concept sketch which looked hilarious! Some other ideas canned (the more interesting ones) were a 3rd and 4th class of Big Daddy. One which was dropped right at the end was a HUGE slow big daddy who had a cannon on his back. Another early type of big daddy (dropped) was one which had this slug type fleshy thing stuck on its helmet, with these tentacle that penetrated the glass “eyes” on the big daddy and were controlling him.  It moved VERY differently to the normal BD’s and you had the option of either killing the slug, or killing the host. Like I said, it was extremely informative…..if youre into that sort of thing!

In other games news, I missed out on getting an early copy of Mass Effect by about 5 seconds. I tried one EB here and it had already sold out, so I tried the other one, just in-time to see some guy swipe the last copy off the shelf, right under my nose! Dammit! I dont know why EB broke the release date, as nobody else had. Nevermind. Its not like I have long to wait (4 days).

Im glad I went, as its helped take my mind off a load of crap happening with our house sale at the moment. I wont go into detail, as there are things still up in the air at this time, but I’ll explain once we know more.

Off out in a bit to meet a couple of folks off one of the tech forums Im a member of. They might be child molesters, they may be nice people – we’ll just have to wait and see! I’ll post again once we get back about more normal stuff. I promise I wont mention games at all! 

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Poohsticks!

Posted by captainbeaky on November 15, 2007

1086278408_spoohhoney.jpgWell, I bet you cant guess what. We did nothing exciting today? What you say? Surprised?! er….no! Or at least you shouldnt be. Getting a bit fed up now with the lack of job. I guess I just have to carry on looking, and waiting for replies from the 2 positions Ive already applied for. Still….doesnt make it any less annoying. 

On a positive note, weve seen a couple of things that made us laugh on the TV. Firstly was a new program here, called National Bingo Night, which is equally as thrilling as my blog posts! It is what the title describes it to be – just some bingo show…but the thook is the funny indian guy who keep shouting “Noooooooooooooooooo Bingoooooooooooooooooooo!” in an amusing voice! The one redeeming feature in a show that would otherwise suck the life right out of you!

Second thing weve found amusing is the way politics is performed here. Its a bit of a mix of UK and USA styles. Each of the 2 main parties (Coalition and Labour) seems to have adverts that describe their policies etc…. as in the UK, but more alarmingly are the adverts that just slag off the other guy, like the States. The latest one is the best, and is from the existing Goverment, slagging off the opposition (Kevin Rudd), and it shows some country guy who used to be an MP being asked the question if he believed Kevin could handle the pressure of being Prime Minister, and he said, in a really thick Aussie accent, and I quote “I worked with the opposition and let me tell you Kevin Rudd couldnt go 3 rounds with Winnie the Pooh, let alone lead the Country”. Awesome! 

 STILL not got broadband, so rang Netspace today, and they told me its 14 WORKING days from the application, which means my connection date is the 20th, which is next Tuesday. Bit annoying but what are you gonna do. For whatever reason, the internet isnt too bad today so its fair news. Also, I received the modem we ordered off them too, so Im just waiting for them to turn the juice on. 

Tomorrow, I’ll be going to that Games Expo thing I mentioned before, and passing through town on the way. News is that Mass Effect is being released tomorrow here, a week ahead of schedule so I’ll get it and try it out. Is getting some great reviews, and should take me a LOT longer than a few days to complete! 

Posted in Gadgets, Games, Oz, TV | Leave a Comment »

New Toy?

Posted by captainbeaky on November 14, 2007

nokia-n82-ofc.jpgWell, to ward off any folks expecting exciting news today……we did nothing again! Nowt going on, and to be honest, it was a bit cloudy outside. Had a forecast of rain but none materialised.  I played more Guitar Hero 3, Becca spent a fair few hours on the net, although the “broadband” we are on at the moment with Unwired, is maddeningly slow. It took about 10 minutes for me to check my email today as it kept timing out from loading Gmail?!? It took 4 minutes for it to load my blog to even make this entry! I was close to just calling it a night and posting a short message. HOPEFULLY Telstra will have got off their sorry arses tomorrow and sorted my PROPER broadband out. I’ll be phoning them to speed things as this shit is doing nothing for my sanity. 

Just finished watching a great program here called Newstopia. Is a bit like the Day Today, only less strange. If you do choose to watch the stream, be aware that there are probably a lot of references to Australian news things that you might not get. However there are a fair share of fantastic moments too

 The above piccy is a photo of the new Nokia N82, which is probably my next new phone. I was going to go for the Sony Ericsson K850i, but the new Nokia has Wifi, a normal headphone jack, 5MP camera with flash and sat nav! Sounds like a winner – just have to wait until it makes its way over here. 

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Here I Am! Rock You Like a Hurricane!

Posted by captainbeaky on November 14, 2007

14112007378.jpgDidnt do much (again) today. Popped into town to sort out my Medicare stuff, and got $300 refunded. Not a lot, but better than a slap across the face. Did some checking to see if I could get Assassins Creed early but failed. However, we did manage to pick up a 2nd guitar for Guitar Hero 3, and I must say it improves things no end. Guitar Hero is SO much more a social party game than just a single player experience. Playing with others is just so much more fun, and it feels less “unfair” than standard career mode. 

I did dabble with playing some of the songs on hard but its just ridiculous. If you thought Guitar Hero 2 was hard, this is probably twice as hard as that. I struggled on hard on some of the early songs, and the later ones get silly with multiple 3 chord noodling, right up and down the fret. And in an “ordinary” game, I might persevere to get past a particularly hard bit, I really cant be bothered with this. For me, this is not really a game, its more like an experience. Like a fun fair ride if you will. I dont want to play on hard, and listen to a half butchered version of whatever song playing, JUST so I have bragging rights to say I beat the game on hard. Id rather play the song on medium, have it play back with the majority of the song in tune, and enjoy it. And once I’d got this mentality on my head, Im enjoying the game a LOT more. Unlocked some of the bonus songs and some of them are amazing!  Theres one song by a German band called “Die Toten Hosen” (or something) with a song called “Hier Komt Alex“, that is just fantastic euro-rock at its best. Brings a smile to my face whenever I play it and one of the all time best Guitar Hero songs Ive played. So there you go – I cant be arsed getting all of the “macho” achievements as they require you to do ridiculous things that only a sadist would attempt (beat a song on expert, 5 star it, with no sound on, using a normal xbox controller?!?!) Thats just a thing that twats would brag about on forums – why would you bother? This game remains in my collection to put a smile on my face – nothing more. And its doing its job brilliantly!

Im also pretty excited by the rumours of a new ultra-small macbook coming in January. The only thing that bugs me about my existing macbook is its weight. Its pretty heavy for a 13″ machine, and could do with being a bit smaller too. Fingers crossed the rumours are true.  

However, fall of the joys of getting new games, and researching new gadgets., I just with I had a job now. The lack of human contact, and the lack of focus in my life starting to grate. I mean, its been nearly a year now since I did any “proper” work and while it sounds great, I feel like my brain is starting to rot. I just wish I could hear some positive news from Holden, or Boeing. THAT would be the best Christmas present this year. But dont think that Im being down, and morose. Far from it – Im staying positive, and getting on with things. Get 8 emails a day come through with new jobs available. Just a matter of picking the right one. After realising from several agencies, that Im “worth” £28k – £30k, I dont want to jump at the first job offering me £20k. Its a waiting game unfortunately. 

Not a clue what we are up to tomorrow. Waiting and hoping the internet is sorted. Its been awful today.  Sorry that most of the updates seem to be game related, but if we dont do much, thats all I have to talk about! 

Posted in Games, Job, Nothing | 2 Comments »

I keep this handy….For Close Encounters!

Posted by captainbeaky on November 12, 2007

call-of-duty-4-modern-warfare-20070501010207018.jpgSo guess what……we didnt do much today! The realisation is finally hitting that we DONT have to do anything if the weather is nice. Back in the UK, you used to feel obliged to get out and do stuff, as you never knew when the next nice day was coming. Here, I havent even seen a cloud for a week! Nice days are two-a-penny, so theres no real need to do stuff on every one of them. And it agrees with our thrifty lifestyle. 

Finished Call of Duty 4 today. The Aliens reference, is now also a COD 4 referrence, as a lot of Aliens lines are in COD 4. The above is mentioned, “stay frosty” is also mentioned, as well as “we…are…LEAVING”. Nerdy that I know these things, but what are you gonna do! Was a really good game. Relatively short, but for how long it lasts, its amazing. For all of Half Life 2’s longevity, I cant help thinking a lot of it was filler material – not so here. Short and sweet. The difficulty on “Hardened” is also pitched just right. Hard enough for multiple deaths occuring, but not frustrating. Already playing it through again, as Im sure I didnt really appreciate the level designs as I was cowering for cover while bullets rained in from all angles. Gonna see if I can pick up Assassins Creed this week too. I wasnt going to bother but its getting some extremely good reviews. Gimme something to do. 

As I said, we didnt do much. Received my Bopo card, which is basically like a credit card, but not. You transfer money to it from your bank account. Its the only option we have to buy goods over the internet here as there are NO debit cards to speak of provided by the bank, only Switch cards. Did some shopping. Thats it. Going ot town tomorrow to sort out Medicare stuff and have a mooch about.  

Posted in Games, Nothing, Oz | 3 Comments »

all of the blood and sweat and meat…

Posted by captainbeaky on November 12, 2007

a998d60cded9c983c0895ecea8944ac5_full.jpgJust got back from seeing Patrick Wolf at a venue in Richmond and he was fantastic! Gigs must work a bit differently here though. The doors didnt open at until 8:30, so we left at about 8:30 to get there “fashionably late” and because we’d done our homework and found that the 1st support band were pooh (some NZ outfit). The trams were packed so took a bit longer than usual, so didnt get to the venue until gone 10.30, but we were amazed and pleased to see that the headliner wasnt on until 11pm! And he was doing a 90 minute set, so we’ve only just got back (1am here now).

The venue was pretty good. A little bit bigger than the cockpit in Leeds, or about twice the size of the Academy 2 in Brum.  Considering this was his forst full band tour in Australia, there was a tremendous amount of support for him. Loads of people with a very positive reaction. Was heartening to see. Patrick also seemed really pleased with the reaction, and happy with the night. Overall, a great performance – really impressed. 

On a more boring note, we did nothing today. I played on my 360, Becca read books. Both went out to a Mexican restaurant up the road for tea. We ate like pigs! Nachos, enchiladas, burritos, and a couple of very big and very tasty margaritas. Still feel full from it, and probably will STILl feel full this time tomorrow! Fattys we are!  

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Too Late…

Posted by captainbeaky on November 11, 2007

Sorry, but for some reason, I thought I’d already made a post today, and its only now that I’ve realised I havent. However, were off out to see a band in a 10 minutes or so, so no time for a proper post. I’ll update you on all the “thrilling” details of our day tomorrow. 

Posted in Nothing, Oz | Leave a Comment »

Doing nowt has never felt so good!

Posted by captainbeaky on November 10, 2007

n867580483_1648159_6879.jpgIn a practical sense, today, weve actually done nothing. Well, tell a lie, we’ve walked to a place, then walked back, but its felt like a great day! Been another scorcher here (about 26 degree’s) so we decided to have a stroll up to Port Melboune, not Brighton as I said yesterday. Was great! Ive put some more photo’s on Facebook if youre bored enough to have a look. Stopped halfway on the walk up at a beachside cafe, and had a soething called a Pide. I chose it as it looked a bit like a pasty, but we later found out from the waitress, that its a Turkish food, thats basically a turkish bread, topped with whatever (I had morrocan spiced lamb, Becca had chicken) then turned up so its a sealed, pasty shape. God damn it was good! Yet another tasty place to eat. 

Saw about a million dogs on the beach, some playing in the water, others just sat there puzzled when their owners threw their ball into the ocean! Saw a few more cockatoo’s flying around, and by christ theyre noisy! The parrots have nothing on these monsters! Huge too. Got a bit cross with the flies here. It seems the “never give up” Aussie spirit has even wormed its way into the insects here too. With a British fly, if it comes by your face, you move your had around and it goes away. Not so here. You move your hand around, and it flys the other side of your head. Move your hand around a bit more and it lands on your glasses. Move your hand to your glasses and it buzzes around your head. They just dont give up!  

After our walk there, we simply walked back. Nothing exciting. Popped out a bit later to catch the sunset, which looked great, then bought some sausages for tea. Spiffing!

Posted in Drink, Food, Oz | Leave a Comment »

Its all in the wrist.

Posted by captainbeaky on November 9, 2007

forearm-wrist-brace.jpgThis is what I’ll have to wear if I carry on playing Guitar Hero 3. My god – I downloaded the first 2 song packs today (Foo Fighters and Velvet Revolver), and “All My Life” by the Foo’s is insane! Not because its hard, but its constant strumming. It makes your wrist/hand hurt! I wonder why they put songs like this in. As good a song as it is, its just not fun to play. I wish they’d begin to understand that games like these are primarily party, or social games. They seem to be pitching them to hardcore gamers who’ve nailed every song of every previous game on expert. And dont even mention the Achievements – theyre ridiculous. I’ll stick with it, but the more I play this, the more I become disillusioned with the franchise. Going in the wrong direction for me. Still, I may just be  whining cos it takes practice to be good at it. 

 Call of Duty 4 however is fantastic. Even though I enjoy learning about the WWII period, I thought the last WWII inspired Call of Duty was good, but Id seen everything before. This modern day update, takes everything Call of Duty was good at, and put them in a modern day situation. It plays REALLY well, with varied locations, and its by far the most intense fps Ive played this year. Yes, MORE intense than Halo 3, Bioshock AND Orange Box. Is also a good challenge too, so far the difficulty is pitched just right, as Im playing it on a new “Hard” setting, in-between normal and veteran. It looks amazing too – theres a level where youre inside an AC130, in control of all the guns, looking down at a town via a heat sensitive camera. Everything just looks real, right down to the screen momentarily flickering when you see a huge explosion.  

Thats enough of my games waffle anyway. Its been another sunny, warm day here. Went to get my ears lowered, and it turned out fine – even costs cheaper than Toni and Guy in the UK. Picked me up a pair of shorts from St Kilda, and just had a tasty “seafood pack” for supper.  Broadband status on the suppliers website has changed, so at least things appear to be moving along nicely. Oh, also got our tickets for the NYE do at the Espy.

Girl from across the hall popped her head in today, to apologies for not going out last week, which was good. Had a bit of a chat, and re-affirmed the plan to get out and have beers. Nothing specific, but probably best that way. Also arranged to meet up with a few folks from an AV Forum Im a member of here. All of them our age, and a couple actually living in St Kilda. Off out for a meal and drinks this time next week. Actual human contact! At last! Sad eh?!

Plan for tomorrow is to get the train to Brighton, have a mooch about, then have a slow walk back along the coast, like we did a few weeks back. Currently the weather forecast says its going to be 26 degrees.  Which is nice! 

Posted in Friends, Games | 2 Comments »

Hatty, Hat, Hat, Hat!

Posted by captainbeaky on November 8, 2007

gh3a.jpgNot such a great match this morning. For the unknowing, it was 2-0 to Barcelona. Rangers were just eclipsed. They looked a difference class. But nevermind, its been another beautiful day. After the match, I took a stroll out, bought a paper, then went down to the beach to read it. Was fantastic. Another one of those “pinch me” moments! Mr Weatherman says solid sun for the foreseable future. Saturday will be 27, and next tuesday will be 30! Scorchio!!!!!!

After that, it was back home and onto games. Managed to finish Half Life 2: Episode 2. Overall, I thought it was good. Not great though. The last setpiece fight being particularly ominous and repetitive. Got fed up with it after while and was a relief when it was over. Not cos it was hard (it was pretty easy) but it just seemed like a very cheap, and unprofesional way of extending the longevity of the game.  Still….Im looking forward to Episode 3! 

Onto Guitar Hero 3 after that, and another mixed bag reaction. Some of the songs work very well, while others can be as crap, hard and tuneless as those in GH2 (Metallica, Slipknot and White Zombie…Im looking at you!).  I cant say I enjoyed the last 4 songs  in the game, which is a pity as on the hole it gets things just right. The last “encore” song is just a joke though. The most ridiculous, tuneless, strum-fest youve ever heard. I didnt even attempt to play half of it, and Id wager that anyone that does will have the wrists of an 80 year old if they do complete it. Im also a bit miffed you dont unlock ALL of the songs by completing singleplayer career. There are another 6 songs (including the Bloc Party, RHCP and Beastie Boys tracks) that can ONLY be unlocked by either completing co-op career, or by inputting a cheat! VERY annoying! Im not cheating, so will wait until we get a 2nd guitar next week, but for those who DONT have someone else to play this with locally, it stinks! 

 I still havent played Call of Duty 4, but will remedy that in the next half hour.  Will post my impressions tomorrow. 

Going to get my ears lowered tomorrow, as well as buying New Years Eve gig tickets to see Architecture in Helsinki (who we both love), as well as an aussie band who I like called Wolf and Cub. Ticket is a bargain – $45! And thats for about 11 bands in 3 rooms….on NYE! The pub/venue is 10 minutes walk away so its ideal. Beats UK ripoff (as most things over here do). Posted a few more pics on Facebook for anyone that way inclined, so knock yourself out!

Posted in Games, Oz, Sport | Leave a Comment »

My Name is Jonas……

Posted by captainbeaky on November 7, 2007

gh3.jpg8-0 eh? Good result. Shame they couldnt have puled off a performance at least an eighth as good 2 weeks ago! Enjoyed the match though. Gonna get up early tomorrow to watch the Rangers vs Barcelona, which was a corker last time.

Got my 2 games this morning no problem.  Guitar Hero 3 is fantastic! It looks great, the setlist is superb, but I still dont think its got as many good songs as the 1st one. However, its a step in the right direction after the crap songs in the 2nd one. Its a LOT harder than previous guitar hero’s though. Well, I say that, its more like its difficulty is sporadic. I’ll play one of the early tracks, and get about 85% 1st time, but a couple of “levels” later, I’ll play a supposedly harder song and get 99%, only missing 2 notes after my 1st time playing it?! Puzzling. You also wont get anywhere if you cant nail hammer-ons and pull-offs. Some sections require over 10 notes without hitting the strum bar. The boss battles are a bit naff, as it kind of cheapens things. Makes it feel like youre actually playing a game rather than “being” a guitar hero. Ruins the immersion. Great to play along to Smashing Pumpkins, Pearl Jam, Weezer and Muse (even if Knights of Cydonia is shockingly hard, even on medium). Got some good looking extra characters, and guitars to “buy” and some decent extra songs. The only problem is that the extra guitars werent on sale yet (this time next week) so we cant play together in the co-op career, but only got a week to wait until we can. Its tremendous fun! I havent touched Call of Duty 4 yet! Will have a play on that tomorrow. 

Gave the agency guy a phone call today about this Boeing job thingy, and from the sounds of it, its not as dead as I thought. The problem appears to be that the jobs werent advertised internally, and now the internal unions or whoever, are up in arms that they werent given the chance to apply blah blah blah. Threatening to call tribunals if they are given straight to external applicants. So its all political crap. Whats happening now, is that Boeing are advertising it internally, interviewing, then looking at the external applicants afterwards. So hopefully by the end of the month I should know more. The agency guy said Im still the best qualified applicant for the job so thats still positive. Just hope the unions sort their shit out so things progress.  Still, its better than what I thought. 

No plans for tomorrow yet, further than watching the footy, playing Call of Duty 4, and  Guitar hero 3. 

Posted in Games, Job, Sport | Leave a Comment »

A Damn Fine Day?…YES!

Posted by captainbeaky on November 7, 2007

6249882_36_2.gifI decided to get up early this morning to watch some REAL football, as the Liverpool/Besiktas game was on SBS. And its shaping up to be a damn fine match. At the time of typing, its half time and the ‘pool at 2-0 up. Just found out the Rangers/Barclona match is on tomorrow at the same time – excellent! That was a cracking match 2 weeks ago. 

Despite the fact that its only 7.30am here, its beaming sunshine outside, and I can hear the parrots chirping away. Compared to the red nosed, ice cold scousers in the crowd Im feeling pretty warm right now! Forecast of “sunny and 23 degree’s” just been on the box.  Woo hooooo!!!!

On top of this already good news, Guitar Hero 3 and Call of Duty 4 out today. I’ll be popping out right after this match to pick them up, seeing as Crook probably wont surface for another couple of hours at least.  Might get me some more bagels and another tasty ice cream on the way home. 

Watched The Host last night and was impressed. Very different to conventional, well, Western monster movies. No build up to when the beast makes its first appearance. Its eating folks within the first 10 minutes. But that doesnt really do it justice. Its not really the story of “monster appears – plan to kill the monster – kill it”, its more the (albeit same) story seen from through the eyes of ordinairy people. I dont want to give too much away but it really is a good film. Not cheesy (apart from a tiny bit at the end) and the monster design is fantastic. If you like sci-fi, or horror, or even a good action movie Id recommend it. Really good movie – Id give it an 8/10.

Another piece of good news is that because its the 7th of the 11th Month, 7-Eleven is having a “Happy 7-Eleven “Day. Go into any 7-Eleven and wish the person behind the counter a happy 7-Eleven day and you get a free Slurpee! This day just keeps on getting better! And YES – I am easily pleased! 

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Remember, Remember the 5th of November.

Posted by captainbeaky on November 6, 2007

fire_r3.gifExcept we didnt!!! It was only an email from my parents that reminded me it was yesterday! I havent heard one firework over here, so I guess its not a big thing over here. Suits me  – back in the UK I remember fireworks going off a month before and 2 weeks after 05/11. Plus its all kind of lost in the Spring Racing Festival gubbins here. Very busy today here – the queues for betting shops were out the doors and down the street! I dont particularly like horse racing but Id rather that be in the news than cricket or aussie rules. Nevermind, the Melbourne Cup should be over as Im typing this so I suppose its time for the papers and TV to get excited over the next big sporting event. I didnt really take in how VERY important sport is to everyone here. Makes sense I suppose with the weather being so nice. No fat kids stuck at home watching TV. And Macdonalds is seen pretty much as a joke here too. Starbucks isnt popular, either.  Anyway, I digress!

Been a really nice day here today. About 22 and sunny. Despite SOME others who shall remain nameless who havent even bothered getting dressed, I DID venture out the house today. Went and sorted out membership to a local video rental place. No membership card, you just tell them your phone number and give them a password – is a good idea. I always used to keep forgetting my Blockbuster card in Brum. Got me a tasty ice cream (peanuts and chocolate) and had a walk up the beach. Bit of a difference from last November 6th!  Rented “The Host” which isnt particularly new, but Ive heard good things about it. 

 Not sure what we are doing tomorrow. For sure one part of it will be going to JB Hifi to get games. Only just found out that Guitar Hero 3 is online enabled, so if anyone plans to get it, let me know and I’ll let you kick my arse online!

Also, as Im a nerd, Im going to pop along to this show in Melbourne in a couple of weeks.  Probably be crawling with kids, but if I dont go, I’ll never know. Should be exciting anyway – the first time Ive been to any kind of gaming expo, which is odd considering Ive been into games now for about 20 years or so! Mock me at your desire, I dont care!

Oh, and house news. Email from my parents stated that now our dumb arse solicitor failed to get council confirmation of some environmental letter! The completion date was meant to be this Friday, but I cant see that now. Why is it Solicitors, as a profession seem to be the most mistake prone group of people ever. Has anyone actually had a totally seamless experience when dealing with one of these reprobates? Useless! 

As for the exciting news I promised yesterday…er……as youve read, I dont have any of my own so I typed in “Exciting News” into Google and it threw up a web page, of which one of the stories was about how rural Chinese folk have been eating Dinosaur bones, boiling them to make soup and making them into paste to put on wounds as they believe the “Ancient Sky Dragon” bones have healing properties! So there you go…. EXCITING NEWS!  

Posted in Film, Gadgets, Games, Nothing, Sport | Leave a Comment »

Worst. Post Title. Ever.

Posted by captainbeaky on November 5, 2007

bitey-dogs.jpgSorry, couldnt think of anything witty to say! We didnt really do much today, but it kinda feels like we did. Although Im going to have to start thinking of other things to type as Im sure for the majority of you, reading this must be completely boring! Anyway…..

Went into town, which was in a state of disarray as there was some Melbourne Cup procession thingy going on. It was really busy too, probably because tomorrow is a bank holiday and folks were having today off too. Becca went and got her Victorian Driving License and a ton more books, and I went to see if I could pick up Guitar Hero 3 and Call of Duty 4 early, but they werent budging this time. Will pick them up on Wednesday when theyre out officially.

On the way back through St Kilda, we popped into our local off license for the first time (god only knows why!) Its a really good one, you should see the amount of beers they have. I spied some Red Stripe that has my name on it, as well as some cheap Wild Turkey. We also spied those two dogs, above, tied up outside Safeways! They looked cheeky, but I wasnt going to get close enough to stroke them. The writing in red on the dog on the right says “I bite!”

No plans for tomorrow at the moment. Our broadband appears to be progressing nicely, which is good news as it took me 7 minutes for Facebook to load today. Pain in the arse. MIght just take it easy tomorrow and sort stuff out. But I promise to have SOMETHING interesting to say, even if its not my news, it WILL be exciting news! 

Posted in Drink, Gadgets, Games, Nothing | Leave a Comment »