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2 Years All Ready?

Apr. 8th, 2010 | 01:41 pm

I'm home alone right now, and for whatever reason I was drawn to my Live Journal and actually felt like updating it.

So much has gone on in the last two years that I don't really know where to begin. Lately, however, I've been reflecting on my life and considering the choices I've made that put me in the position I'm in today. Rereading all my old entries was pretty fun, though there was a lot to go through, and it brought back some fond memories and reaffirmed that the life I live today is so much better than the life I once had. Although, there are definitely parts of that life I wish I still had. Namely, passion for something.

About...oh I guess 4 years ago, I was introduced to World of Warcraft. It consumed my life. Everything I did was about WoW. Every moment I had I was either logged in, or raiding, doing runs, reading about, or leveling characters. I stopped making games, even writing music, and for so long that's what my life was about.

Then I met Laura. WoW time became less and less and we spent more and more time together. Eventually she moved in and I found myself doing the things that were necessary to move forward to build a life together. We just celebrated our 2nd anniversary which outshoots any other relationship I've had in the past. Though we had some rough times, things right now are awesome between us. I couldn't be happier, and I truly feel that she is the person I will spend the rest of my life with.

So the WoW addiction is broken. My account has been canceled for months and I really have no desire to ever go back. It was a lot of fun and I met some wonderful people. The highlight for me, really, was having something to do with my brother as we used to play together. He still plays, but now we work together and that gives us something else to have in common.

Work. Yep, I have a real man's job now. For years my panic and anxiety prevented me from going to work at a normal place. I tried lots of things to help finance myself and contribute to my household but nothing was really consistent. I got into internet marketing about a year ago, and have found some success with it. However, it wasn't consistent, and I never knew from month to month what I would make.

With Laura's help, I took the steps I needed to take in order to overcome my anxiety. Mostly, I think it was the hurdles thrown at us that I had no choice but to deal with, get over myself, so that I could be a better boyfriend for her at a time when she needed it the most. I was proud of myself, I AM proud of myself, for being able to do these things that 5 years ago would have been out of the question. It's a long story, but there was awhile there where Laura's family drama was out of control. It was a strain to her, to me, her entire family and our relationship. Unfortunately, though things haven't necessarily worked out the way we all would have liked, there is a sense of resolution, and acceptance to move on and make better lives for each other, even if those lives don't include certain family members anymore.

At any rate, my brother helped me to get a job with him at a grocery store and I'm enjoying it a lot. The work is really physical, but I love it. I feel the most in shape I have been in a really long time, and that makes me feel better about myself. The only thing I don't like about the job is you get the random pissed off customer who has had a really bad day or something, and feels the need to take it out on you. Although annoying, I don't take it personally and can move on pretty easily.

I'm still doing a bit of internet marketing on the side, but it's no longer my soul source of income. Now I have a steady paycheck, and anything I make it from it is a bonus, which is nice. Certainly less pressure and I know Laura feels much better about the whole deal.

I also had an incredible amount of dental work done, including oral surgery. It was a really neat experience actually. I remember being extremely nervous going into the OR, then a little mask was put on my face and the next thing I know I'm waking up in recovery. It took about 2 weeks before I was eating solids again, but well worth it. I had 7 teeth pulled altogether. 3 bad molars and my 4 wisdom teeth. Fun times. :P

The rest got restored, and I now have a smile again. It's given me a lot of confidence, and although expensive, will be paid off by August which has me really excited.

My grandmother also passed away this year. Although she has in and out of hospital for years, it actually came as quite a shock. She had been doing so well, then one day out of the blue I get a phone call from my Mom telling me that my Grandmother had a heart attack and passed away. I was at home with my brother at the time and Laura was at work. I remember telling him the news and he was in just as much disbelief as I was. I took a bit for it to sink in, and at times it still feels like she's still here.

I was okay with it, until Laura got home. Then as I was telling her what happened, I guess it hit me cause I just broke down. The saddest part was my 3 year old nephew asking for her and my sister (his mom) having to tell him that she went away. I guess at 3 you won't remember these things, or really understand what's going on, it was just really sad when he asked for her.

In other news, I've reconnected with my father whom I hadn't spoken with in I think 5 years or so. Laura and I even went down to visit him, my step-mom and my two sisters who I knew next to nothing about. We're all now facebook friends and we keep in touch that way. My Dad took Laura for a ride on his Harley and now she wants one. :P Motorcycles really aren't my thing, but Laura has always enjoyed far more adventorous things than I have.

At any rate, it's been good to get back in touch. Considering how the...silence, I guess you would call it, was based all on a misunderstanding that just lasted far too long. I've had "Daddy Issues" for awhile, and it's been nice to finally address them.

Anyway, this is really long, and there was more I thought I would write about, but that's basically my life right now. Still happy and in a relationship. Working hard, and finally getting my life on track.

See you in two years. ;P

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Stuff and Some Other Stuff

Jul. 7th, 2008 | 12:14 pm
mood: happyhappy
music: A Tout Le Monde - Megadeth ft. Cristina Scabbia

So...it's been awhile since I've written anything in here, and I'm bored, so eh, what the hell?

Perhaps the biggest news in the past few months is that I've been in a relationship, and still very much happy in one, for the last 3 months and a little bit. Things are going really well, and really, there isn't anything to complain about. Granted at first, after being single for so long, it was difficult to adjust to not having all this "me" time, I had become so accustomed to. And I do enjoy my alone time, because it allows me to to do lots of things like compose, program, play WoW, among other things. But! I guess you sorta figure it out as you go, and adjust/compromise to make things work for yourself and the other person cause things are just groovy now.

Her name is Laura, a beautiful, firey, red-headed Irish lass, who's wit, and humor is definately on par with my own. We have a lot of fun together, usually at each others expense :P but it's really cool. :)

Last night we went and saw Wall-E, which is quite possibly the cutest movie I have ever seen. A definite must for anyone I'd say. I enjoyed it greatly.

Hmm...what else? Oh, I recently cancelled my domain/hosting plan because I wasn't using it, at all. I've kinda stepped back out of the composing game for the time being, at least professionally, as I'm working on a business venture with my good friend Wes and it's going well and looking very promising. So, since I was actually paying for my host this time, and though I'm not "cheap" per-say, I don't like wasting money on something that's not being used, I decided to suspend the account for the time being. So for the first time in I'd say....a good 10 years or so, I'm actually homeless on the web. Kinda weird when you think about it like that....

My most recent game addiction as been Neverwinter Nights. It was the first PC game I actually played all the way through, and recently I aquired the expansions, which made me want to play the whole thing again. I'm on chapter 3 of the Hordes of the Underdark expansion now, and my character is an Epic Leveled Arcane Archer :D So that's what I've been doing in my spare time.

I've also been back into playing music again. Not just writing, but playing. Went to one of the Baker's BBQ's on Thursday, and jammed with Sean again, for the first time in a really long time. We hadn't seen/spoke to each other for a good year, and it was really great seeing him again. Not to mention Laura has a sweet ass Ovation acoustic that she's been keeping at my place for the last while...there's something about nice sounding instruments that make you want to play more.

My nephew also turned 2 recently! He's growing up so fast. ;_;

And I guess that's it. I'm sure I could go on and on about all the things Laura and I have done since we've been together, but....I doubt anyone wants to read about that. ;P So I'll just say farewell, for now. :P

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Funny Conversation at McDonald's

Apr. 10th, 2008 | 03:46 pm
mood: amusedamused

So this morning, my brother and I were hungry after I picked him up from work and we decided to hit up the McDonald's in our local Wal-Mart. It's terrible for you, but oh so cheap, and oh so good.

At any rate, I usually get a Sausage and Egg McMuffin meal and he goes for the Bacon and Egg Bagel. (This is important).

So we order, our usual, and the lady working the till (who was really nice, friendly and actually really funny) tells us:

"Oh, sorry we don't carry the bacon and egg bagels here."

Me to my brother: "You want just a sausage and egg McMuffin then?"

Brother: "Sure"

Lady at Till: "Oh, but we do have the BLT bagels. They're pretty good!"

Brother: "Sure, that works......wait a minute"

Lady at Till: "Yes?"

Brother: "You don't carry the bacon and egg bagel, but you're selling us a BLT Bagel, and an egg McMuffin"

Lady At Till: "That's right."

Brother: "You don't see this as being..strange?"

Lady At Till: "What do you mean?"

Brother: "Well, you're giving my brother an egg McMuffin, which has an egg on it, and me a BLT Bagel, which has bacon, and is served on a bagel. Basically all the ingredients for a Bacon and Egg Bagel which you don't carry."

Lady At Till: "That really doesn't make sense does it?"

Brother: "You can't just, you know, throw an egg on a bagel with some bacon, and call it a day?"

Lady At Till: "Umm...I don't think I'm allowed to do that."

Brother: "...okay. I'll just have a BLT then."

We pay, get our food and leave. Meanwhile during this entire conversation I'm trying not to laugh my ass off, but I thought that was rather funny and he really does have a good point. :P

In other news: I frickin' cannot believe how awesome Laura is. Every day she becomes more and more awesome. I'm having a blast right now...it's just... I dunno, our personalities compliment each other so much, I've never met someone quite like her.

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Things that have happened!

Mar. 31st, 2008 | 07:36 am
mood: happyhappy

Okay, so I've been reeeeally busy as of late, so this is my quick recount of things that have been happening:

Started working on a new business venture with my good friend Wes. We had some brainstorming, he's got a good idea of what he wants to do with it, I'm inputting where I can, and looking forward to starting work on it!

I turned 24!

My monitor of 10 years finally died, and I was forced to replace it with a sexy new flatscreen, which my brother was kind enough to buy me for my birthday.

My (newish)car, needed work done on it. Replaced the front brakes and rotors, fixed a leak or two, but it is still idling too high!

My WoW guild finally downed Gruul! We finally have a consistant dedicated group of 25 that helped make this possible. It was an exciting night for us all.

I have been seeing a very lovely gal named Laura for the last few weeks, and well...things are going VERY well. We actually went to high school together and graduated the same year, but never hung out or anything like that. We met through a mutual friend, spent a few months chatting off and on through facebook, and developed a fondness for each other. She's smart, witty, sarcastic, cheeky, gorgeous and just plain wonderful. I made her dinner last night, think I scored some brownie points for the awesomeness that is my cooking. *flex*

And to top it all off I've had a lot of work recently which has helped the old wallet out, which is never a bad thing.

I failed the Gruedorf competition, 3 weeks now I think I've gone....hopefully gonna jump back in soon.

Huzzah!

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A Day in the Life of Nobuo Uematsu

Feb. 19th, 2008 | 02:06 pm

If you're a game music fan, or just a fan of Nobuo Uematsu himself, there is a very cool 11 page long interview with him over at 1up.com

http://www.1up.com/do/feature?cId=3166165

You can read or watch the videos. It was a very fun read for me 8)

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W (Double you!)

Feb. 12th, 2008 | 01:33 am

Today I wanted to write about a certain J-Pop Duo that I have recently fallen in love with. They are known as "W". Some times written as "Double You" and, -_-, "Double U".

It's not a big secret that I am a fan of a lot of anime/j-pop music, because they can be just so damn catchy. But very rarely do I actually find a person/group that I seek more info on, and come back with even more goodies.



So this is one of their love ballad's, which as I understand is actually a cover. Let's put aside the fact that they're both freakin' adorable, they have amazing voices as well, and their harmonies are also quite delicious.

What's even more interesting about them is that I kinda found them too late, as they are no longer together because of a scandal involving the one on the left.

What I find interesting about this is that she was caught smoking at the age of 19 (the legal age to smoke in Japan is appearntly 21) so some tabloid over their known as "Friday" caught her and threatened to post pictures of her smoking. "Friday" is appearntly known for ruining the careers of Japanese Idol's, and even have the term "Friday'd" associated with them.

So, she was caught smoking under age, big deal right? Look at our popstars over here. Smoking, drinking excessivly, making complete asses of themselves. Well, appearntly over their, they don't take that crap lightly. The talent agency she had been apart of actually suspended her for a year. Then, slowly were allowing her to come back by letting her doing receptionist work in their main office in Tokyo. As they were getting ready for her come back with "W", she was caught smoking again, and was found to be romantically linked with a man 15 years her senior.

They fired her, for this, and the duo is no more.

That's a basic summary of what happened from what I've read, I'm no expert on the subject, so I'm sure there's points I'm missing.

It's a really neat look at how different things are when comparing west to east.

Anywho, it's sad to see something as good as this be torn apart because of "scandal", but they're good, and I recommend them to any j-pop fan out there.

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New Car

Jan. 30th, 2008 | 01:00 am
music: W - Matsuwa

I got myself a new car this week. It's quite sexy, and in really great condition. What happened to my old car? Well, appearntly while my sister was driving it, she was pulled over by a friendly enforcer of the law, telling her it looked like the right tire was about to fall off and to park it immediately.

So after hearing this news, we got it checked out, and sure enough something was wrong with the thingy the tire connects to (I don't know these things!). At any rate, what I did find out is that it would have been more expensive to get it fixed than buy something else that was in better condition. Furthermore, it's pretty well known that my sister used to take advantage of me when it came to that car, in letting her use it basically whenever she wanted. It was always a mess, and basically was driven into the ground as far as I'm concerned. Between myself, her and my Mom taking it once in awhile, it just never really got a rest. So, I saw this new car as an opportunity to lay down some new rules and so far, it's been extremely clean and I haven't lent it out at all. Hurray!

I was gonna take pictures but I keep forgetting...maybe tomorrow. It's a blue 1993 Ford Tempo, and as I said, in extremely awesome shape as it's a refit car. Meaning it was in an accident, they fixed stuff on it, and it sold for a lot cheaper. I bought it from a car auction, which was quite exciting, as I've never been to one! There were a couple there that I was considering bidding on, but the one I have was my first choice, which is good because one of the cars that I felt was a worse car, went for $400 more than what I was willing to spend. I was actually quite surprised that I got this car for the amount I did.

The auction was interesting. There were lots of cars, and well I couldn't understand a damn word the auctioneer said. After I bidded on my car, I thought I was outbid on it because I didn't really understand what was going on. :P Luckily, Bob, my Mom's long time boyfriend was with me, and quite a veteran at the car auction, he let me know that I had won cause I probably would have gone home without it in disappointment. :P

There's really only a few things that I'd like to do with it. It needs an oil change, but that's cheap, new brakes would be good, those aren't too expensive, and it definately needs new windshield wipers, but again, those are cheap.

Gruedorf update a little later on today.

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Gruedorf Quasi Update!

Jan. 15th, 2008 | 05:02 pm
mood: contemplativecontemplative

For those that don't follow my normal game dev blog, just ignore this post cause it'll probably be pretty boring to you. Not that any of my other posts aren't as boring, just saying this one will be especially geeky, and uninteresting :D

So, while I was attempting to do tiles, because one of the things I really dislike about Amethyst is how much art I've ripped, I ended up just deleting about 99% of my work in disgust.

And it got me thinking.

As someone who isn't so good at art, the most painful part of the creation process, to me, is map making. I know for some people, it's really satisfying and fun (I'm looking at you Grue!), but for Amethyst it's always a really arduous task. It's actually what burns me out, and turns me off of game creation altogether. Which is where I'm finding myself this week.

But this could be my own fault. What I mean is, when I set out to make the sprites, I wanted Chrono Trigger like characters because as someone who can't doing anything 3d, but would love to engross someone into a world I felt that this was the best way to go about it. CT was the first RPG I ever reeeally fell in love with, and was addicted to, and I always felt it's because of how unique the characters looked, the different emotions they can project, and just general awesomeness of the environment they were put in. With characters as detailed as that, you need backgrounds and such that are just as detailed and interesting, otherwise your characters look out of place.

This is where I always get stuck. When creating a scene, I often find my characters out of place because, even if I've ripped art, there's a certain skill involved in making it all mesh together. And of course there's always the need for some original tiles, since my intentions were never to create a full clone of any game. (Artistically or otherwise).

So I've been thinking, maybe I need to scale down my character sprites. I'm decently good at creating smaller tiles that don't require as much detail, and this way, I think I can do all the artwork myself, and not be bummed out that my "original" game, is anything but original looking.

I do have smaller versions of most of the Amethyst characters, that I could update, finish animating, and such, and put them in the game, that wouldn't be a problem. I could also leave the battle sprites as is, since in a lot of games, the walking-around sprites are a lot different than their battling counterparts, and they don't seem out of place with the backgrounds I have. It wouldn't be much of a hassle is what I'm getting at, and the outcome would make map making easier on me, probably more fun to do, and less likely for me to get so frustrated that I don't want to do it anymore.

So those are some of the pro's...

The cons, well, I said I wanted to shift to a darker theme, still have comic relief moments, lovey-dubby scenes, and all that fun jazz...but can you pull it off with characters that aren't as detailed? Can't convey much emotion other then an open mouth and a little symbol beside them? I look at other games, like Lufia which did a pretty good job of this, FF6, of course, hell even FF4 which had simple graphics does a pretty decent job of getting emotion across. So I guess it is possible.

Another thing is well, some people are used to the characters that are out there now. It has been 3 years or so since I released the original demo, so maybe no one will really care if I do this switch. :D

Essentially, this Amethyst that I've been working on is a different game anyway. Same characters, same systems, same name, but the scenario was going to change drastically. So I am leaning more towards simplifying things, so that I can enjoy it more, continue on in this "contest", and not feel so damn guilty about ripping so much artwork.

So that's what I'll fiddle around with this week I think. See if I like it, guage some reactions, oh and have my normal site back up. :P

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Gruedorf and my site

Jan. 15th, 2008 | 12:35 am

So, I don't have good enough credit to have a *real* credit card, so the one I pay with is one of those ones you load up with a set amount of money. Well, turns out I forgot to do that this month, and well, my account has been suspended. :P

In addition, my car is currently motionless until probably Thursday when a part I ordered comes in and is installed by someone far better than me at those sorts of things. This means I'm stuck in Crofton for a few days, and unable to load up said credit card, from the institution I got it from. (Which is the only way I can do it).

That being said, my site will probably not be up in time for my weekly Gruedorf update, therefore I'll have to use this page to update. And since both the Grue and the Dorf are LJ friends o' mine, I figure they'll both see it, and I still won't lose :D

So yeah, kinda feel stupid, but this month has been a little hectic and these things are easy to forget.

Anyway, I'll update again with some more crappy attempts at original tile artwork and possibly a song. :)

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Need something...different.

Dec. 14th, 2007 | 08:50 am
mood: thoughtfulthoughtful

It occured to me yesterday, that somehow everything I do is related to video games in one way or another.

I'm still a WoW player. Still enjoying it, and the people very much. Well more so the people I'm sure. I've met a lot of great players, and I probably would have quit that game a long time ago if it wasn't for the people in the guild I'm in. It also introduced me to voice chat, which is a side of the internet I hadn't really explored at all until a few months ago. So the social aspect does go a bit beyond text and chat which somehow makes it a little more...personal? Maybe not the word I'm looking for, but certainly actually hearing someone's voice makes it feel a little more "real" if you will.

But then I work, on video game music. I compose, and I compose, and it's all for this game or that. I've often toyed with the idea of actually composing an album, but all the inspiration I draw upon when creating instrumental music comes from a scene description, or a screenshot. I don't know if I remember how to just write something.

AND when I'm not doing either of those, I'm working on my own video game project(s). (http://rysen.seanoyler.com)

More recently, however, I've found myself addicted to playing Guitar Hero for my X-Box. Damn, that game is a lot of fun. It combines my two greatest loves: Video games and music. What's not to love?

What got me thinking about possibly trying something new, was recently we had quite a snowstorm. Power was knocked out here for eight hours or so, and I was really lost as to what to do with my time. I played guitar for a couple of hours, and that was fun, kept me occupied but after that, I found myself cursing that I had no electricity to play a game or hell, even just randomly surf the internet.

It then also occured to me that I didn't actually own a computer until I was 15. And I tried to figure out what it is that I did with my time before that but came up blank.

So...I'm thinking, I need to look into doing something new. Something that keeps my interest as well as these fancy computer thingy's, but requires less...technology. I've tried to get myself into drawing, but I'm horrible at it. I'm not much of a writer, but that is something I've thought about trying. Guess I'll just have to keep trying different things, and hopefully come up with something fun!

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