Monday, 12 June 2017

Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind Collector's Edition unboxing

Time for my second ESO Collector's Edition!!! :D If you want a look back then here's my unboxing of the original game.

I preordered the physical Collector's Edition back in April and thus I've played Morrowind since early access dropped at the end of May. But opening this box made my day :3

Opening the box the first thing you see is the Dwarven colossus figurine, with the game case tucked neatly on the side. I removed the game case. To get the figurine out of the packaging you had to lift the whole plastic thing it was tied to with metal strings. Remove the metal strings and get the figurine out of the box. Attach the spinning blades on the right arm and it's all set :) It's huge! Bigger than the Molag Bal figurine you got in the previous Collector's Edition!

The game is in a beautiful metallic case. Under the plastic that contained the figurine was the book. It's the journal of Naryu Virian, an NPC in ESO who shows up in two previous DLCs as well as in the Ebonheart Pact part of the base game. The book is in the same faux inbound leather style as the book in the previous Collector's Edition, and it's absolutely beautiful! I read the other one from front to back and I'm looking forward to doing the same with this one :3 The book contains the story of Naryu as she travels all over Tamriel in her mission for the Morag Tong, and accompanying the story is lots and lots of concept art.

With the book was also a map ov Vvardenfell. All the names on the map are in Daedric lettering and framing the map are pictures of Almalexia, Vivec and Sotha Sil.

When I picked up my Collector's Edition I was told that you got 25% off on the Collector's Strategy Guide if you bought it with the game, so I decided to pick that up too as it wasn't very expensive. But inside it is an extensive guide on builds and exploration etc etc etc. I'm really looking forward reading this from front to back! There was also a map ov Vvardenfell that came with the Strategy Guide. This map will be extremely useful in exploring Vvardenfell in-game. as it has pointers to where everything is, from quest-givers to unmarked locations and fishing spots.

So there we go with everything! :) Another Morrowind themed post will show up later when I have completed the expansion :3

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Sweden Rock Festival 2017

On Tuesday morning we got into the car and drove south. We arrived in the afternoon and immediately set about raising our tents and exchanging our tickets for wristbands. When that was all done the party began. The first night was also the worst night. Lots of rain and wind. In the morning two tents were broken and three others had water in them. Only ours was whole and dry :) The worst was with the guy who had forgotten to zip the door closed before falling asleep; he had a small pool in his tent the whole next day xD

Wednesday was the first day of the festival. We only had one planned concert that day; Black Ingvars, which we went to, but we didn't see the whole thing.
After that it was party for the rest of the evening. When the rain returned we called it a night and went to sleep.

Thursday was the big day for concerts. Already at 1pm I was listening to my first concert of the day; Apocalyptica. Haven't listened overly much to them before, but they were really good and I don't regret going. Directly after Apocalyptica we went and watched some songs by Iced Earth.
After that we returned to the camp for some more partying. Before I went back to a long row of concerts. First was Alter Bridge. It was the same with them as with Apocalyptica - I haven't listened overly much to them, but I've liked what I've heard so I went to see them. After that we met up with more people from the camp to see Steel Panther. That was an absolutely amazing concert! Though I wish they had played Party Like Tomorrow is the End of the World.
After Steel Panther we seated ourselves against the fence around the stage and awaited Edguy. The two largest stages are so close to each other and they have big screens on the sides so we could easily sit there against the fence of one stage and watch Aerosmith perform on the other stage. It was magical when they started playing I Don't Wanna Miss A Thing. The whole area was singing along, not just the people in the crowd watching Aerosmith, but literally the whole area, including us waiting by the other stage. At five past midnight Edguy came on and gave us the best show of the year. Tobi was amazing as usual ♥
I was at the very front, fangirling my heart out with another girl from camp and it was magical. Towards the end the rain started drizzling again, but nobody left the concert. And then they finished with King of Fools and I cried. We went back to camp, soaked by the rain and with acheing throats.

On Friday we had no concerts planned until the evening and so the whole day was dedicated to partying. In the evening Toni and I went inside the concert area to see Ratt. I only knew one song by them, but Toni knew a bunch and I really liked their sound.
Directly after Ratt we met up with some people from camp to watch Scorpions. Scorpions, imo, was the biggest disappointment of the year. The singer's voice hadn't aged well, and the crowd didn't seem impressed and the band didn't seem able to get us all going. Not even Wind of Change ellicited the same response as Aerosmith's I Don't Wanna Miss a Thing. Neither did Still Loving You or Rock You Like a Hurricane. After Scorpions we returned to camp and went to sleep.

The sun was relentless on Saturday. It was the last day and I didn't really have anything planned this day. That is until I found out that the special project called Sweden Rock Symphony Orchestra that played this day would feature Tarja Turunen. That meant I had to go xD So I went in there and watched the Orchestra play well-known metal songs accompanied by a rock band and five well-known singers: John Lawton (Uriah Heep), Joe Lynn Turner (Rainbow, Yngwie Malmsteen), Tarja Turunen (solo, Nightwish), Dan McCafferty (Nazareth), Peter Tätgren (Pain, Hypocrisy), and Joacim Cans (Hammerfall). I was mostly interested in Tarja ofc and when she started singing Nightwish's Nemo, the crowd went wild. Dan McCafferty seemed ancient. He was the only one who didn't stand up or run around on stage. He walked out, sat down, and sang. But what a voice!!! And the crowd went wild when he sang Nazareth's Love Hurts. The most hilarious part was when Peter Tätgren came out and started to sing. Half the orchestra looked terrified of his growling. The old dudes playing the cellos didn't seem to know what to think, and the choir girls were hilarious singing Shut Your Mouth. And then Joacim Cans came out and sang Hammerfall's Hearts on Fire and the crowd went wild again. They finished the whole concert by bringing all the singers back up on stage and giving a rendition of AC/DC's Thunderstruck. It was amazeballs, all of it.
After the concert we met up with some people from camp and watched Rhapsody. We saw the concert from the side, since we huddled up in the shade of a tree with lots of other shade-seekers.
After the concert we went back to camp and started working on getting rid of the last liquor so we wouldn't have to carry any of that with us back to the car that night. There was also a debate on whether we should see In Flames or not. In the end we decided not to, and as to not have to force our way through lots and lots of people we decided to start the drive back home during their concert. Our designated driver had been sober the whole day. So we packed ourselves into the car and around 11pm we left the festival.

We arrived back home just before 6am and fell into bed completely exhausted. It's been an amazing year! See you in 2018! :D

Friday, 2 June 2017

May favourites 2017

Books: I read three books in May. The best one is the same as last month; A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin.

• AFI - "Miss Murder" & Alice Cooper - "Pain"

• The Almost - "Monster" & Alter Bridge - "Lover"

• Amberian Dawn - "Lost Soul" & CNBLUE - "Love is..."

• Crash Test Dummies - "Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm" & Daughtry - "Long Live Rock n Roll"

• Evanescence - "Made of Stone" & Sirenia - "The Path to Decay"

Games: I only played Mass Effect: Andromeda and Elder Scrolls Online this month. With the release of Morrowind on Early Access it's a complete tie.

TV shows: The Big Bang Theory, Agents of Shield, and Doctor Who. Easy choice.

Other: The company dinner at Jamie's Italian was great, and so was the summer party at Fotografiska for all of tourism Stockholm.

Monday, 29 May 2017

Game completed: Mass Effect Andromeda

I actually completed it about a week or two ago, but who's counting?

Before I picked up this game I had read a few complaints from fans. Mostly it seemed to be about "this game doesn't look as good as I expected so now I have to hate it". Admittedly there were some weird things going on with the animations, but graphics wise I can't complain. I had to play it on low due to my graphics card getting old, but except for the hair textures the game looked a lot (and I mean a lot) better than I expected on low. Especially the skies and the galaxy landscapes were really beautiful.

Story wise the fans seem conflicted. Some loved it, some hated it. My opinions of the Mass Effect games usually differ from the general opinion, though. For example I think Mass Effect 2 is the worst game in the series. That hasn't changed since playing Andromeda. Imo Andromeda was definitely better than 2, as well as 1. Mass Effect 3 had a more epic feel, imo, which Andromeda doesn't really quite capture. So as far as I'm concerned Andromeda is one of the best games in the series, but not the best.

And now there will be story spoilers. 

Shit hit the fan almost immediately, which I really liked. Just throw us out there into the action! I liked how nothing at all were like the readings said back in the Milky Way, but wasn't that to be expected? 600 years has passed since those readings! The work to make one of the golden worlds actually liveable felt amazing tbh. Especially on Eos and Elaaden the change was noticeable, would've hoped for more of a change to Voeld though.

The first meeting with the angara was really cool and I immediately fell in love with them. No surprise then that Jaal became my boyfriend :P And I always brought him with me if there was anything to do concerning the Resistance, the Remnant or the kett - so basically all the time xD

Slowly uncovering the secrets of the Remnant was really cool. I had a theory beforehand that the angara came from the Remnant. I was leaning more towards descendants of the Remnant but that the Remnant culture and technology had been lost to the angara in the war against the kett. So it wasn't all that much of a surprise to find out at the end that the angara were created by the Remnant.

The final boss fight was cool, but it didn't feel as epic as the human reaper from Mass Effect 2 (the only really cool part about that game) or the entirety of the fight against the Reapers in Mass Effect 3.

It was also really cool to figure out the timeline of Andromeda. When they left the Milky Way. It was obvious pretty early on that they didn't know about the Reapers coming. But then on Kadara I ran into two ex-Cerberus operatives who talked about the Illusive Man's Lazarus project, which was what brought Shepard back to life, and how they thought he recruited all the wrong people (meaning the crew of the Normandy). Which sounded to me like they left before the end of Mass Effect 2. Maybe even just at the beginning of it.

There are also lots of mentions throughout the game, that makes me wish for about 4 DLCs. They were mentions that didn't really have any bearing on the main story of Andromeda. Like the mention of the quarian ark, that their departure was delayed because they wanted to bring the drell and hanar and other races aboard their ark as well. So I hope for a DLC where the quarian ark actually arrives. There was also the fact that the Ryder twins found out that their mother was still alive but kept in cryo to stop the progress of her disease, which makes me want a DLC where they manage to find a cure and can bring her out of cryo. I also want to find out more about the Remnant and how they disappeared, for all the angara know it seems the Remnant disappeared before the kett arrived. Why? How? And then ofc there's the small cutscene of the Primus at the end that basically promises a DLC where we'll have to fight him,

We need to remember that Andromeda doesn't take place in the whole galaxy. We're just in the Heleus cluster, which means there are other clusters and the whole galaxy is infinitely bigger. I want to take the fight to the kett main base, and I hope that will happen, either in a future game or in a DLC.

 Left: I found the Normandy!!!
Right: Leaving Eos
 Left: Plants vs. Zombies reference!
Right: A krogan wants to make gingerbread cookies :3
 Left: The turian ark in space
Right: The Scourge
During cutscene so not a very good picture. But here's the whole gang together! :D

Monday, 8 May 2017

April favourites 2017

After a busy first week of May I can now finally do this post!

Books: I read three and a half books in April, and by far the best one is the one I haven't finished yet; A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin.

• Andrew Lloyd Webber - "Little Lotte/Angel of Music" & Bon Jovi - "Livin On A Prayer"

• Di-Rect - "Hey Boy" & Rob Zombie - "The Life and Times of a Teenage Rock God"

• Within Temptation - "Final Destination" & Abney Park - "Breathe"

• Alanis Morissette - "Hands Clean" & Alice Cooper - "Hello Hooray"

Games: Elder Scrolls Online, Final Fantasy VII and Mass Effect: Andromeda. By far the best one has been Mass Effect.

TV shows: Twin Peaks, Big Bang Theory, Agents of S.h.i.e.l.d. and Doctor Who. Not a hard choice.

Other: April started out horribly with the terror attack in Stockholm, but ended beautifully in our engagement.

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

My last 5 books: Horror, YA, and a classic

1. To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee. I had heard a lot about this book, mostly about how horrible all the events in it were. I didn't really like it, though. Could be that my Swedish translation messed it up for me, but this book didn't speak to me. I'm not protesting that the events in it were horrible, because they were, but to me there was nothing revolutionary about this book. Maybe when it was released in the 60s it was revolutionary, but for me in 2017 this is a theme I have seen over and over and over so many times in so many different contexts. I didn't really like any of the characters; all of them, even the "good" ones were too stubborn for their own good. I don't hate this book, but it felt bland.

2. The Phantom of the Opera, by Gaston Leroux. Oh, how I've wanted to read this book since I first saw the musical. Especially since I kept reading online that all the girls who kept romanticising the Phantom should read the book to find out how truly horrible he was and stop doing it. Well, yes he was horrible, but I knew that from the musical. But the book didn't change the fact that I simply felt sorry for him. Circumstance made him a psychopath, if he hadn't been born with a misshapen face he would've simply been a genius. Probably renowned for his work. Instead he was shunned all his life. The way people treated him because of his looks made him into a psychopath. Idiotic, short-sighted people were to blame for how he turned out. That's what I got from the musical, and that's also what I got from the book. In the book it was revealed that all the Phantom wanted was a normal house on a normal street with a normal wife and a normal life, just like everybody else. He was sick of being the Ghost, sick of hiding under the streets of Paris, he just wanted to be normal. And he wanted it so much that when Christine touched his face and kissed him on his forehead without being afraid he was so happy that he felt he could die happy, even if he never saw her again. I can't do anything but feel sorry for the Phantom.

3. Every Day, by David Levithan. This book was recommended me by a friend, and I loved it (most of the time). I couldn't stop reading it and it wasn't until I was finished and put it down that I realised how repetitive it really was. The story was unique, and I loved the whole idea, but the setting became repetitive. Today I woke up as... I'm this far away from Rhiannon... Let's screw this person's life up and go see her... I loved how the author showed life from every different aspect. Boy, girl, rich, poor, gay, straight, knowing someone for only a day vs. knowing someone for most of your life... Exploring the different aspects of life was amazing to read. I wanted more, though. I wanted to find out more about these others that are like A. I can only hope that there'll be proper sequel where A deals with these others more, even if he decided that he wants nothing to do with them I still want to find out more about them. And I want to read more about A and his life, despite how repetitive it becomes.

4. Kaninhjärta, by Christin Ljungqvist. Young adult fiction set in Sweden. I liked the language of this book, how it was written, but I didn't like any of the characters. While reading it, I thought the story was quite likeable, but a few days after finishing it I could hardly remember what it was about. Most of what I remember are angsty teenagers and adults with questionable judgement. Could be that the angsty teenager part hit a bit too close to home (Mary isn't too far from how I was ten years ago). But honestly, I liked this book much more while reading it, than I did reflecting over it afterwards.

5. Necroscope, by Brian Lumley. A few years ago I found a BuzzFeed list called Top 20 Vampires in Books, and I decided it was time to get through that list. The Necroscope series is mentioned on that list, so picking it up I naturally expected a vampire experience. While there are vampires in this book, it's not the main element. The story takes place during the 1970s (the book was written in the 80s) and feature a super secret Soviet spy organization that houses the necromancer Boris Dragosani. Circumstances lead him to Britain where we have the necroscope himself; Harry Keogh. Harry can talk to the dead and they like him, while they fear Dragosani and his forceful necromantic methods of getting what he wants. For years Dragosani nurtures an old, trapped vampire and after Dragosani becomes a vampire himself, the final battle between the necromancer and the necroscope are at hand. I love the twist at the end. And I love how this isn't a vampire story in the romantic, sexy sense, but in the sense that vampires are actual monsters that should be exterminated. This is the first book in a literay universe of sixteen, and I'm really curious to see what comes next.