Monthly Archives: May 2013

Dead Man’s Walk – Larry McMurtry

I purchased the Lonesome Dove Chronicles from the Kindle Store on Amazon.Com last month and started working my way through the series. Lonesome Dove is one of my favorite books. It is one I can read over and over again. McMurtry has a simple, clean style that conveys his scenery and characters  The people are just people. Some are fantastic, some are dramatic and all of them are deeply flawed in very real ways. Their reactions are things you can get behind. There are no heroes here. Not heroes as we so often think of them.

I happen to like that a lot in a book. I don’t need to read about perfect people doing perfect things with weak, silly flaws that let me go, “aww”.

First thing: Do not read the author’s forwards if you do not want spoilers. This is a collector’s set and you are expected to know the story.

Second: I will read this book again.

This series, if you do not already know, is a Western. It is set about 15 years before the American Civil War. It is not a civil war novel. It is the start of Woodrow Call and Augustus McCrae’s relationship and life. It wanders through roughly their first 12-15 years together. The dates are not perfect but the general time sense is good. Some of the information from Lonesome Dove is reset here. The base storyline is the same. However, some details do change. I just rolled with it.  It does not destroy Lonesome Dove but only expands upon the story and fleshes out the characters. But, I will pre-warn anyone that there are inconsistencies and to take a deep breath and allow them to improve the story.

I came to like Call more than Gus which was surprising because I liked Gus more than Call in Lonesome Dove. However, in this book, Call’s flawed, stoic nature is on display and it resonates so well with the setting and scenery. He is a very clear person and I like that more than I like Gus’ charm in this book and its sequel.

The  story itself is good, solid fiction. Sometimes you have to suspend belief a bit at a few instances at what people can live though. The book is very, very violent and many people die. I spent a lot of time being surprised which was pleasant. He doesn’t make everything perfect at the end. For anyone that enjoys Lonesome Dove or westerns in general it is a very, very good read. The writing style of smooth and simple but it grips you and drags you in. All I can say is that the weather is terrible.

Age of Wushu – Giving it a Try

I saw a few reviews for the game and decided to give it a try. I was most lured by the whisper of ‘Eve Online in a fantasy game’ and the ‘PvP world’. I normally do not pay attention to adds so I picked this up through my various gaming blogs. I went to their site and downloaded it (ageofwushu.com). I have no idea if it is a trial, a pay to play, a free to play, a pay to win or what.

warning

 

The warning screen was a good possibility. I downloaded the game and logged in. The login window basically says, “This game is new and will have bugs please understand that we know that and are working on it. If you continue you understand.”

So, I clicked yes, because I am very forgiving. I’m the worst bug finder ever and I can admit that.

flippingIt is a very pretty game. You are dropped into a cute little village and you kind of start figuring out skills. The tutorial is half fed to you half figured out on your own. Basically, you have to do a series of basic skills to advance out of the area. I got stuck on one for quite a while due to not going back to the NPC that gives the mission a second time. I advise anyone that plays this to make sure they click on the NPC they are sent to several times. The progression is not always very clear.

I managed to die several times killing dogs. Once I made it through that (and this entire process took me a few hours I am mildly ashamed to say) I got to pick my school to join.

The first school I looked at is boys only! Ugh. However, the last two are both amoral. Sounds good to me! I almost picked the poisoners but however the royal guard is the anti-anti-girl school. I was sold!

The game has auto pathing which is pretty useful. With two screens I can play Eve on one while the other runs about. As well as horses. I shall have to try riding. Joining my new group was pretty easy. I just swore a bunch of loyalty and got promised the ability to harm people.

beingrecruited

Good stuff. I told him that yeah, I wanted this and he told me to go kill some random prisoners! Not a problem, Boss!  A few dead prisoners and some sparkling later and poof, I’m a member of the Royal Guard!

However, Eve called to me so I logged off for a bit. So far, rating is interesting. I love the feel of the game, its very fluid with lots of good movement. I found a guide on how to avoid griefing so I expect once I move further out from the new player area I will bump into the Player vs Player aspect of the game.

It has servers and they were full. So far I have had to wait a few minutes each time to join the game. Once on I have had no problems with connectivity. I haven’t been idle long enough to be disconnected as well.