laguera25: Dug from UP! (Default)
( May. 12th, 2017 09:47 pm)
If I could say one thing to the world today, it would be that I am okay. There's an irksome, needling stitch in my right side and my period is late, but I'm still here. Every day brings a new dumpster fire in the political arena, and the country remains perched upon a dreadful precipice, its future as a democratic republic in precarious balance, but there is still hope, and as hope endures, so shall I. I ate today and looked out my window to see a blue sky and green grass and frolicking dogs, so yes, there is hope.

In matters less momentous, I've been reading and watching crappy paranormal shows and counting down the days until Dragoncon. Time flies of late, and it's less than four months until we're off to Atlanta for five days of fun, food, and geekery. The hotel is set, and since we've been saving judiciously, money should be of scant concern, especially since we're unrepentant cheapskates who'll make do with whatever foodcourt victuals we find. As long as I get an Urban autograph and photo op and a Skurge Funko, I'm happy.

And a visit to the aquarium, of course.

I've been working my way through a replay of Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. Oh, non-existent readers, long had I forgotten the RAEG of the field chase and subsequent jousting match with King Bublin. I went at that for more than an hour, and frankly, by the end, I was perfectly willing to let that little turd, Colin, remain a permanent fixture on Bublin's spear, but I was damned if I'd let the game have the satisfaction(Reason, alas, takes a hasty holiday when I'm frustrated.). Sheer, seething butthurt bested code in the end, but I called it quits before I hurled my controller through our elderly TV. Link can just sit and think about what he's done for a few days. I'm too old for daily blood-pressure spikes anymore and don't want my end to be a massive stroke brought on by telling a conglomeration of polygons and meticulous code to go fuck itself and suggesting that he cram his less-than-helpful companion up his narrow, inept ass. Sideways and sans lube.
This morning, Roomie called to see if the insurance company had received our payment. They had not. So Roomie called Western Union to see if the order had been cashed. No. Then, we drove to the post office to see if it was still lying in the gullet of the mailbox. The mail-sorting ninja said the he gathers the post from it twice daily, so no help there. Having exhausted all possibilities, we headed for the bank to pull the grocery money. On a whim, I opened the glove box to see if the payment is still inside. It couldn't be, you understand, because I dropped it into the post myself nine days ago.

It was sitting there atop the car's maintenance manual just as neat as you please. Utter, utter fail. We promptly carried it into the post office and dropped it into the delivery slot. It should post before the due date, but I'm flummoxed as to how it was still there when I remember dropping it into the mail slot, and now I'm wondering just what did go into the mailbox that day. Roomie thinks it was the garbage pickup bill, and God, I hope so. For one awful moment, I thought I had dropped the car registration in there, but I found that near the bottom of the box, so now I'm completely befuddled.

Yesterday on the Zelda Files, I bested Gyorg, the Masked Aquatic Beast, and beat Great Bay Temple. I also collected the stray fairies(and lo, there was much, much screaming, especially with Fairy #9; I do believe I called Link a "useless, pansy assbiscuit", though the obscenities were running together at that point.)and enhanced my defense power. After that, I tried the Gorman Race Track, but my nerves were fried and my coordination was shot, so I got pasted. Its prize is mandatory for completion of the game, so I can't just skip it, much as I want to. So I'll try it again when I resume the game in a week or so.
Yesterday on The Zelda Files, I defeated Skull Keeta and acquired the Captain's Mask, rescued Zora Eggs from the Gerudo Fortress, got the Hookshot, reunited a pair of lovelorn seahorses, cleared the Oceanside Skulltula House and got the Adult Wallet, and learned the Song of Storms and the New Wave Bossa Nova.

Link and I are quits for awhile, though, because today, I attempted the Great Bay Temple, AKA, The Programmer's Hellspawn. It is a labyrinth of pumps, valves, and jets, and it's very easy to get lost or ensnared in several hours of, "JUMP THE GAP, YOU SIMPERING COCKFLOP!" I curse this temple and the deviant mind that conceived it. It took me until night of the final day to reach the boss, Gyorg, the Masked Gigantic Fish, and he proceeded to stomp me flat and walk me dry. The multiple fairies did no good. When I died, there were only five minutes remaining, far too little time to reach the boss door and best him. So I have to repeat the entire temple. All of it. The switches and platforms and ice paddles. The two minibosses.

This was my face:

Link can go fuck himself for a few weeks.
Yesterday on The Zelda Files, I beat Snowhead Temple and acquired Goht's Remains. Of all the MM bosses, Goht is my favorite. He's an incredible pain in the ass, and pushing the control stick forward so hard for so long makes my hand throb, but the fight is just plain fun. The Goron roll is a wondrous form of locomotion, and I wish I could adorn my wheelchair with the Goron spikes. They would certainly come in handy in a crowded grocery store.

Today, I got the Goron powderkeg license, won the Goron race(though not without screaming and the invention of necessary invective)upgraded my sword, and rescued Epona. I also acquired the Romani Mask and the Stone Mask. I tried for the Captain's Hat, but my hands were very tired, and Skull Keeta kept slipping away, so I called it quits until the weather passes.

Revolver magazine is running a contest to win a meet and greet with Rammstein at the concert nearest you, and I thought about entering, but odds are very good that the tickets are for wholly inaccessible seats, and I don't want to run the risk of winning the drawing, only to be disqualified because I can't use the seats. I would be crushed. So, I didn't enter. I'm sure it will be fun for someone, though.

Meet and greets are nice, and I won't deny it, but they're not the unforgettable bonding experiences fans imagine them to be. When I met Kirk Hammett for the second time, it wasn't the warm, kind, one-on-one encounter of the first meeting, which he had arranged himself. I was with a group of fans, and we were crammed into a hallway. After a few minutes, James came out. He was cordial and shook hands and signed paper, but there wasn't much conversation. He was polite, but distant. He was there five minutes. Then Jason came out. He was warmer and more engaged, and he even tried to speak with me(and in my stunned, petrified brilliance, I replied with, "Where's Kirk?" Outstanding, self.), but he was gone in five, too. Kirk came out, and was very gracious, but then he noticed me there and switched to Gimp Advocate Mode, checking seats and sussing out a roadie for guardian angel duty, so there wasn't time for idle chatter.

Meet and greets are assembly-line scut work for the band, and while I would never turn up my nose at them, they're hardly magical. If I won the chance to be in one, it's very likely that, as with poor Jason Newsted, whom I adored at the time, my brain would seize, and my intended expression of heartfelt gratitude would emerge as, "Geeble biddly boo Rigrizzard meep." That would be that, my one chance would be gone, and the band member would move on to the more coherent fan and spend the rest of the night wondering what the hell I was trying to say. I bet it would make for a sublime addition to Richard's repertoire of WTF faces. Someone else could make better use of the experience. Maybe someday I'll get the time and privacy I need to say thank you in a comprehensible human dialect, but a meeting arranged by a magazine isn't it.
Today on The Zelda Files, I finally won the Deku Butler Race and thereby acquired the Mask of Scents, which detects magic mushrooms that allow Kotume to brew better potions. Beyond that, it's fairly useless. I also got the Goron Mask and Don Gero's Mask and learned the Goron's Lullaby. For the record, baby Gorons are incredibly cute.

I tried my hand at a few mini-games for heart pieces, but with the exception of the Treasure Chest Shop, I failed hard. They're timed archery games, and lo, I suck mightily at them. I would bypass them entirely, but I need all the heart pieces I can get, because final boss, Ganon, never fails to be a health-devouring son of a bitch.

The Red Bloat has sapped my energy, and all I want to do is curl up and drool.
On The Zelda Files, I have beaten Woodfall Temple and Lord Oodolwa and gathered a few heart pieces. I also tried the Deku Butler Race to win the Mask of Scents, but so far, I've gained nothing but pain in the attempt. This race features a section of rapid jumping, and, to put it mildly, rapid jumping is not my strong suit. The mask isn't essential to the game, but the more masks you have by game's end, the easier it is to appease the Moon Children, who play with you by asking for masks. You need at least fifteen of the thirty-five to even engage the final boss, and some masks are so useful that you don't want to surrender them. I'm aiming for all masks, but I'll settle for twenty-eight. So far, I have seven.

Beating the temple was a near thing. MM is a timed game, and even with the help of the Inverted Song of Time, I only had three hours. Ordinarily, this would be more than enough time, but lucky me, I got stuck attempting the same timed jump over poisonous water. Either the befrigged Deku Stick would go out just as I reached the cobwebs, or I would miss entirely and plummet to the corrosive, flesh-devouring waters below. That room took two and a half hours, which left me half an hour to beat the rest of the rooms and the boss and save. I had two minutes on the countdown clock when I saved.

Last night, I played the Doggy Racetrack mini-game. So fun. You pick a puppy from the corral and lay your bet, and if the pooch places first or second, you win triple or double your wager. If it places third through fifth, then you break even. Any lower, then you lose. If you have the Mask of Truth, then you can wear it and listen in on the pups' thoughts to get a bead on the fastest pooches, so it's nearly impossible to lose. It's an easy way to make huge money, and it's cute to see little Scottish Terriers legging it around the track, barking on the while.

I would've done more, but the Gamecube froze during Koume's target-shooting mini-game. Fortunately for me, I had saved my progress and created a backup file before starting it, so nothing was lost. I suspect that was my Gamecube's way of cutting me off for the night, a bartender refusing to serve the soused patron another shot. So I'm giving it a day or two off to rest its circuits. That tiny warhorse is eight years old(I bought one on launch night, but it fell victim to a lightning strike in '03)and has gone from languishing in the linen closet for two years to being played six hours or more daily, so I'm not surprised it called for a timeout. I'll leave off until the nasty weather passes tonight and tomorrow.

Besides, I've more than enough to otherwise occupy my mind. While I was at the grocery store today, Roomie found a handful of puzzles in the cheap toy aisle. I bought one called pumpkins and poplars, a rheumatic, bucolic rendition of a pumpkin patch with a boy and his dog in the foreground and a bright red barn with grain silo in the background. It's pure sentimental pap, and cheap, to boot, but it's a means of passing time in five hundred parts.

SPOILERS for Post-Mortem and Cruel and Unusual )
I finished Death du Jour by Kathy Reichs last night. As with her previous novel, Deja Dead, the mystery kept me guessing and was well-paced. It did, however, fall down a bit at the end, with a rather slapdash conclusion that spoke heavily of writerly fatigue. The mystery that opened the story wasn't the one that closed it, and though Reichs hastily addressed it at the end with a decidedly lackluster gobbet of character discourse, it was readily apparent that she was much more enamored of the sensationalistic grue that was the true heart of the book. While I very much enjoyed the harrowing tale of fringe cults gone dreadfully awry, I would have loved to read the story of Sister Elisabet Nicolet in greater detail. In sum, it was money and time well spent, but not the mystery I expected from the blurb on the back of the book.

I'm now set to start Cruel and Unusual, the second Kay Scarpetta novel by Patricia Cornwell.

I also started Majora's Mask today. So far, I've collected the Bomb Mask, the Great Fairy Mask, the Kanako Mask, the Bremen Mask, the Deku Mask, and the Bunny Mask. I also learned the Song of Time and its variants, the Song of Healing, and the Song of Soaring. Now, I'm poised to tackle Woodfall Temple, which I will do when next I play.
For lo, I was mighty, and did slay Ganondorf, verily. It took eons because a)I kept falling off the platform in phase one of the boss fight and b)Zelda is utterly useless and hinders more than she helps. She's allegedly a mighty sage, but all she does is get in your way at critical moments, such as when you're moving in for the kill shot on the fallen boss, and dispense Captain Obvious advice at the least opportune moment. Yes, Zelda, I can see that he's coming to kick my ass, thank you. Now shut up.

The second phase of the fight, Dark Beast Ganon, threatened to give me a fatal coronary. For the first part of the battle, it was easy to get behind him and smite the tail, but come the second half, he became Jackie fucking Chan. I couldn't reach that tail. At all. Finally, I realized that I could stun him with Light Arrows and dart around to whack the tail, but it still took eight tries because I kept running out of either arrows or magic. When I finally beat him, I was down to my my last arrow and the final dregs of magic. If I had needed another hit, I would have been thoroughly screwed. I absolutely cut capers in my chair.

The best part? After Link had beaten Ganon down and taken a righteous drubbing in the process, Zelda piped up with, "I'm using my power to bind him. Quick, draw your Master Sword and deliver the final blow!"


Still, I triumphed despite her blundering and got to see the final scenes. It only took fourteen years. They were adorable. The celebratory dancefest looked liked the Ewok house party in Return of the Jedi.

So, that's done. I'm going to take a few days off to rest my abused hands, and then I'll start MM.
Today on The Zelda Files, I dropped the hammer on the Spirit Temple. Despite being the penultimate dungeon of the game, it's on the easier end of the spectrum. The Anubis monsters are vaguely annoying without Din's Fire, and the Iron Knuckles can deliver the swiftest of ass kickings, but compared to the Water Temple, it's a cakewalk.

And the boss, Twinrova, is just plain fun. Their death scene is hilarious; I could've watched the posthumous squabble for hours.

"I was only 400!"

"And I was just 380!"

"We're twins, don't try to lie!"

"You must have gone senile!"

"Is that any way to treat your elder sister?"

"We're twins! How can you be older?"

"You're horrible!"

"You're heartless!"

Link: ...

LOL, Nintendo.

I collected the final Gold Skulltula and the Light Arrows and called it a night. I could have started the Gerudo Training Center, but it's an optional quest, and the prize is Ice Arrows, which are useless at this stage, and so I might just skip it and go straight to Ganon's Castle. If I do, I could finish the game tomorrow, a prospect that inspires triumph and regret in equal measure. This playthrough has been stupefyingly fun, and because I took the time to collect everything, I've enjoyed the game far, far more than I did the first time around, when I rushed from temple to temple and ignored the many enhancements and upgrades.

Once it's done, I'll take a few days off and start either MM or TP.
Yesterday on The Zelda Files, I beat the Gerudo Fortress, rounded up a few more Gold Skulltulas, and learned the Requiem of Spirit. I could have started the temple, but temples always take three times as long as I expect, so I quit while I was ahead. I could tackle it tonight after the Top Chef replay, but my hands are sore, so I might wait a day or two. I'm nearing the end of the the game now, and the melancholy exultation is setting in. I'm happy to have gotten this far, but I'm also sorry that it will soon be over. No more Hyrule Field or Lake Hylia or Castle Town or Kakariko Village. Sure, there are other games in the franchise, but OOT is the definitive Zelda game for me. It's the first one I played, the one that made me a rabid Zelda fan, and I adore it. TP is similar to OOT in many ways, but it doesn't have its cheerful warmth. There's a sense of decay and drudgery that underlies even the silly side quests. Majora's Mask is often needlessly complicated, though it is rife with side quests to keep things interesting. OOT has the perfect balance of adventure and whimsy. It's lightning in a bottle, and I don't think it can ever be recaptured.

Mr. Miyamoto is welcome to try, of course, and I will be only too happy to sample his wares.

One side quest I didn't complete was the Gerudo Horseback Archery Range. I tried, but My aim is terrible when both feet are on the ground, let alone when I'm mounted, and there was no chance that I was going to score the requisite fifteen hundred points for the piece of heart. After twenty-five tries, my best score was four hundred and thirty points. The Gerudo running the range laughed at me. It wasn't worth the aggravation, so I let it go, though I might come to rue that decision when the difference between victory and defeat is one heart. Either way, the odds are good that Ganondorf will happily drill me into the ground at least a dozen times before I flounder and flail my way to accidental victory.

Here in the real world, I've got a full night of TV and a hunk of leftover steak waiting for me. Yum.
Lately on The Zelda Files, I've beaten the Water and Shadow Temples and gotten the Lens of Truth. The game is winding down now; all that remain are The Spirit Temple, a few side quests, and Ganon's Castle. Perhaps it's because I'm older now, or because I've improved my fine motor skills through writing by hand, but it's much easier now than it was when I was eighteen. It's still immensely frustrating when things go wrong, and I still spend hours at a time raving and frothing at the mouth at the great video game injustice of crossing a dark labyrinth, only to plummet to my death on the last jump and start over, but those instances aren't as frequent as they once were.

Let it be known, however, that I despise the guillotine and Floormaster rooms of the Shadow Temple. I made it through the former quite easily the first time, but then I was utterly schooled by the latter to the tune of four fairies and had to work my way back from the beginning. Can you say apoplectic RAEG? I had it, oh, did I have it, and because I had it, irritation and impatience made my sloppy. I plummeted to my ignominious death in that room at least a dozen times before I gained the door on the other side, and when I got to the spot of my previous defeat, I realized that the Floormasters had regenerated. FUCK YOU, NINTENDO. I finally beat them, only to face...AN INVISIBLE FLOORMASTER. Oh, fuck youuuuuuuu. You're supposed to use the Lens of Truth to track it as it scurries around the room, but I didn't want to fiddle with it, so I just targeted it with Navi and performed a spin attack until the chimes sounded.

Infernal Parasite Bongo Bongo was fun, though why unspeakable evil would choose to menace the world by playing bongo drums is unclear.

Though the promised snow never materialized,Roomie and I stayed home today. Valentine's Day is only fun for those who are hopelessly in love, and though Roomie and I love each other very much, the passionate fire of torrid romance never caught hold with us. Rather, our affection is akin the the steady, comforting warmth of embers glowing in the hearth. It's essential, and I'd be lost without it, but it doesn't inspire the urge to run through the house, tearing off my clothes in a fit of unquenchable lust. For one thing, I'm too cheap to mangle my clothes, and for another, Roomie looks like a potato gnome naked. Neither circumstance is conducive to wanton, furniture-wrecking sex.

Since I'm not getting laid anytime soon, I further cemented my spinsterly status by looking at jigsaw puzzles on Amazon. I'm particularly enamored of puzzles featuring German landmarks or landscapes. I was looking for one featuring the Brandenburg Gate, but Amazon had none. They did have quite a few of Neuschwanstein Castle and various bucolic scenes, so I might give one of those a go. If nothing else, it would be a great way to see the country while I'm planning my next wild ride. Jigsaw puzzles don't come with narrow stairs or inaccessible toilets or crag-faced proprietors convinced your wheels are going to ruin their flooring or topple their delicate wares.
Today on The Zelda Files, I finished the Big Poe hunt, got the Zora tunic and Iron Boots and Biggoron Sword, and learned the Serenade of Water. Tomorrow, I'll take on the Water Temple.

Because of my immersion in Zelda, I haven't read or written lately. I hope to remedy the latter tonight after some chocolate cake, but the former is likely on hold until I defeat Ganondorf. Temperance Brennan is interesting, to be sure, but she can't hold a candle to a guy in a green tunic.

How boring is my life that I can't find enough substance for an LJ post?
Yesterday on the Zelda Files, I beat the Fire Temple. It only took six hours and thirty tries to get the hammer this time. I would have gotten it on the first try, but when I hit the platform, I wasn't quite lined up with the front of the chest, so I couldn't open it in time. I would have gotten it on the third try, too, but I was thwarted by Keese, which knocked me over just long enough to run out the clock.

Once I had the hammer in hand, the boss was a fun treat. Oh, it kicked my ass three times, but visually, it's a beautiful boss, a slender, Chinese fire dragon that moves with roiling, liquid grace, and bludgeoning it with a hammer was cathartic. With Volvagia duly vanquished, I took my spoils and explored Death Mountain Trail. I snagged some Golden Skulltulas and chatted with my Goron namesake and Diggoron, the enormous Goron atop the crater. Of the inhabitants of Hyrule, the Gorons are the sweetest, tough, friendly rock-eaters who make the best noises. Roomie thinks it sounds like they're farting, but I think they're yawning. "Mrrrroooop? Ooohhh."

After that, I took Epona for a gallop around Hyrule Field and went Big Poe hunting. It's maddening that you can't Z-target while riding; in later games, you can, because I remember fending off marauding moblins during the wagon escort quest in Twilight Princess. Still, it's immensely satisfying to capture one and turn it in to the proprietor of the Ghost Shop for fifty rupees and points toward the final bottle. The bottle isn't vital, per se--I've gotten to the final boss with two--but it does make things infinitely easier. Going into a boss battle with three or four fairies in your arsenal gives you a safety net and lets you concentrate on the prompt administration of a beatdown instead of your health meter.

Here in the real world, it ain't that easy at all we're preparing for our first taste of winter. The high tomorrow is predicted to be a balmy thirty-seven degrees, with a the low a mere twelve. Nothing by the standards of Europe, which is in the grip of a deep and bitter winter, but frigid after a mild season with the lightest dusting of snow and temperatures in the fifties and sixties. I expect our heater will earn its keep this week.

We want to see Safe House this week--I because OMG, Denzel! Playing a douche!, and Roomie because fistfights and gun play and boner fodder, RAWR MAN MAN MAN.--but we're going to wait until the world thaws. In the meantime, I will kill Poes and do crossword puzzles and read about plucky forensic anthropologists who solve murders and thumb their noses and grizzled old detectives who think women are dumb, hurr hurr.

Dear NCIS,

I realize that the last episode was a lover letter to fandom, but it was also incredibly cack-handed, a huge gobbet of saccharine fan pandering that made me want to change the channel. Fanfiction does not translate well to television when the show writers aren't well-versed in fannish culture. It's a Wonderfu Life, Jethro Gibbs was really the best you could do? Blech.

Dear Criminal Minds,

Please find Ed Bernero and beg him to come back. He took the good ideas with him.

Dear CSI,

Give Ted Danson all the monies. All of them. This has been the best season since Grissom left
Yesterday on The Zelda Files, I won Epona from Mr. Ingo. That's it. I spent eight hours on a single quest. The walkthrough I've been using, which has been spectacularly reliable thusfar, was thoroughly unhelpful, with tips such as, "Get ahead of him and let loose on the last length." Thank you, Dr. No Help. If I could do that, I wouldn't need the walkthrough. I spent those eight hours taking an ass-kicking to the tune of fifty rupees a pop and schlepping to the castle for more money. I think I broke the same pot three hundred times. By the end, the level of hatred for Ingo was sublime. I was shrieking and foaming at the mouth so badly that Roomie tried his hand at it just for forestall the imminent aneurysm. Even he couldn't do it.

Because I didn't want my world-saving quest brought low by an inability to beat a weedy ranch hand in a horse race, I sought other sources of advice. Ah, Internet. Within ten minutes, I had a detailed strategy. I duly employed the advice to hug the fence, and two races later, I had a lovely horse to ride through Hyrule Field.

Today, I beat the Forest Temple. It was smooth sailing until the boss, Phantom Ganon. Despite three fairies, he wasted me with minimal effort. I have trouble aiming under pressure and firing on the fly. My hands cramp and spasm, and shots go wild. So he zapped me into oblivion with impunity. Desperate, I consulted the Internet once more and found a Youtube video detailing how to defeat him without taking damage. It was so simple that it was stupid, and I beat him in ninety seconds. Victory! I decided to quit while I was ahead and stopped after I learned the Prelude of Light.

The Fire Temple, my old nemesis, looms on the horizon with its timed run for the Megaton Hammer. The first time I played this game, it took me two weeks of twelve-hour sessions to get it, and at one point, I wound up sobbing like a toddler, convinced I would never surmount my gimpy reflexes. Yes, my gaming is srs business.

I'm not looking forward to it.
I'm plugging gamely away on OOT. Yesterday, I beat King Dodongo and futzed around getting Gold Skulltulas and heart pieces. Today, I visited the Hyrule Castle market and went Bombchu bowling. I also tried my hand in the shooting gallery because I wanted the Deku seed bag upgrade, but I'm a terrible shot and only get worse when timed, so I gave it up after I blew four hundred rupees. I might try again later.

Then, it was off to Zora's domain, where I played the diving game for the silver scale. I tried to light the torches for a heart piece, but I was too slow. So, I'll try that again tomorrow, too, before I take on Jabu Jabu's Belly.

I love playing, but I'm utterly paranoid about having my precious save file corrupted by a power outage, so I'm ever saving and copying files to multiple memory cards. I just know that one day I'm going to delete or overwrite the wrong save, and the woe, it will be fathomless.
I started Ocarina of Time today. OMG, nostalgia trip! I've already beaten the first boss, and it's a measure of how much my skills have improved that I demolished the first boss, Gohma the Parasitic Arachnid, with no damage in under a minute. Granted, it was only the first boss, which is traditionally the easiest, but it's still an achievement for me. I spent the rest of the playing time learning the Sun's Song and collecting Gold Skulltulas. Tomorrow, I'll visit the Lost Woods and collect more Skulltulas. If there's time, I'll start the Earth Temple, but since I'm currently restricting myself to four hours of playing time per day, it will depend on how much time I have left.

When not dealing out merciless death to zombies, poisonous plants, and mutant spiders, I dreamed of Christoph Schneider, or rather a mutant Christoph who bore a terrifying resemblance to a Marilyn Manson fanboy. Long, black hair, red lips, lots of dark eyeshadow, an eyebrow piercing, and vampire fangs. This Bizarro-World Christoph was attracted to my pheromones and approached me before a concert in a small theater and tried to mouth my nipples through my shirt. Smooth, Christoph. Afterward, I tried to find him to see just what was going on, but the backstage area was guarded by a militant elderly usher who was determined that none should pass. Finally, LAB-era!Richard wandered out and told her to let me pass, but before I could follow him, I awoke to the sporadic shuddering of Roomie's legs in the grip of clonic spasm. Dammit.
I beat Wind Waker today. It only took nine years and thousands of hours. My roar of victory when Link buried the Master Sword in Ganondorf's smug skull could be heard from space. Amazingly, it only took two tries. I expected it to take dozens. I was helped immensely by the fact the unlike most Zelda games, which boast points of no return wherein retreat or supply replenishment is impossible, I was allowed to leave the castle after my loss and restock my supplies. Hence, I could take on the bossest of bosses with five health potions.

Even with that boon, it was a near thing. Zelda kept missing Ganondorf with the light arrows, hitting me with them, or interrupting my desperate attempts at self-defense to pester me with useless tips. Every time she doled out this protip, it would break my autolock, drop my shield, and allow Ganondorf to annihilate my ass. Thanks, Zelda, now shut up and shoot or get the hell out of the way. I was down to two hearts and no health potions when I finally dealt the death blow, and it was sheer dumb luck because I was just flailing by then.

I'm not sure which Zelda game to try next, though I'm leaning towards Ocarina of Time or Majora's Mask. Collecting all the masks in the latter should be challenging and take quite some time.
laguera25: Dug from UP! (Default)
( Jan. 10th, 2012 06:03 pm)
It's always a bit of a letdown when you leap out of bed, ready to begin a new Internet day, only to discover that your inbox is empty. Oh, well. There's always the reflexive optimism of tomorrow.

Tomorrow promises sour weather, and so I might be spending it with the electronics unplugged, reading as long as the lights hold out. I'm nearly finished with Joseph Wambaugh's The Onion Field. It's an uneven book. Parts of it are quite gritty and arresting and queerly, darkly elegiac, while others are stultifying and dry as Kansas dustbowl earth. The character descriptions of the two killers and the jury-selection scenes were well-nigh unreadable for their uninspired mediocrity, but the description of Chrissie Campbell in the immediate aftermath of the murder was gorgeous and raw without tipping into the maudlin. I can't account for the wild vacillation in tone and apparent skill. I can only surmise that Wambaugh was still finding his voice as a writer when he started the book. It was only his second, and maybe he was still getting used to living in a writer's skin after so many years as an LAPD police officer.

I started the final phase of Wind Waker last night. I wasn't done collecting heart pieces(I had the mail-sorting game left), and I hadn't collected all the photos for the Nintendo gallery, but I was tired of picking my ass and waiting for the sculptor to finish them at the rate of ONE A DAY. So I copied the quest file to an empty slot and proceeded to Hyrule Castle. Even with a full arsenal of potions, it's going to be a grind. Not only does Ganondorf have three stages of final bosshood, but you have to fight the bosses from the previous dungeons, Puppet Ganon, and Phantom Ganon before you get to whale on him. And Puppet and Phantom have three stages of their own. So you fight ten lesser bosses before you even get to sniff the bossest of bosses. Zelda programmers are sadistic bastards. I beat two last night, but damn near gave myself a stroke in the doing, so I'm taking a few days off to let my aching hands and grinding teeth and dangerously-throbbing veins recover.
Yes! BOOYAH, BABY! I beat the Savage Labyrinth in Wind Waker. It took five tries, and my hands despise me, but that piece of heart is mine. It would have taken four tries, but like a moron, I stepped on the warp point between floor forty and forty-one and was beamed back to the beginning. RAEGGGG!! But it's mine now. There are a few more heat pieces to collect, and then, it's off to the final boss.
I spent another afternoon grinding along in Wind Waker. I picked up a few more hearts. I ended up playing for about an hour longer than I wanted to because I foolishly started a heart-piece quest just before my self-imposed deadline was up. The summary on the side quest sheet read:

A simple procedure. Blow up the large rock at the top of the island and
enter the hole. You'll be in a fire based caved. This is still pretty
simple. Use the creatures and throw them on the switches after you attack
them and they roll up into a ball. At the end of all this is the heart

Ahaha! Simple, my ass. Maybe it is for folks with hands that don't spasm and twitch when excited, but I spent nearly an hour hacking away at one-eyed millipedes, picking them up, and hurling them at designated switches. The baddies only stay inert and harmless for a short time, and my fine motor skills make me look hammered on a good day, so I would hack, stun, fumble around with the befrigged auto-target, sheath my sword, clumsily pick up the baddie and run it toward the flaming switch, and then the damn thing would come to while I was holding it above my head and proceed to kick my ass. Sometimes, I would throw it, only to have it miss by centimeters. Fuck youuuuu. Oh, Zelda, you so rage-inducing. By the time I got the heart piece, it seemed like meager compensation for all the bullshit I had to endure, and my hands were so tired that it took me ten tries to play the Ballad of Gales. I'm taking tomorrow off to let my hands and my blood pressure cool down.

I'm writing the epic showdown between Dean Winchester and Sam's evil hair. It's a hard slog because I constantly have to stop and visualize how an able person would move, especially one with combat training. If I can get over this hump, then lo, it will be golden.


laguera25: Dug from UP! (Default)


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