Skyrim Diary - Entry 4 - Legend of the Red Eagle

Dear Diary

I decided to take a break from trying to clear the cave of vampires to take on another quest. One of the many books I collected had a quest for the Legend of the Red Eagle.

Mounting my horse I decided to ride out to Red Eagle Redoubt, upon reaching my destination I was met with some unfriendly Forsworn soldiers who were dealt with swiftly. On top of the mountain  was a Forsworn Briar Heart a tougher adversary to deal with but my new fire spells with sword attacks helped me take care of him easily. I searched his body to loot a Red Eagles Fury sword which has the extra ability of doing fire damage when used (I was thinking exactly the same thing - vampire master is weak to fire).

After collecting the sword I also found a note to another location called Rebel's Cairn inside this cave was a switch where I placed the Red Eagles Fury sword & that unlocked a hidden wall into another section of the cave. Upon entering this section I was greeted by skeletons & the ghost of Red Eagle (I don't think he was too happy I took his sword). The skeletons were easy to kill but Red Fury needed a different approach in that I cast fire rune on the floor & ran round him in circles until he would walk over the rune to cause fire damage. This would cause him to stagger & then I would charge in attacking with my sword. Using this method after a few minutes Red Fury met his death, he was protecting a chest which contained a great sword of burning (that master vampire is going to be toast now).

I collected the other sword on the way out & with my new found courage I went straight to Broken Fang cave to pay another visit to the master vampire. The great sword is a two handed weapon so I instead equipped the Red Eagle sword & my shield. I placed a fire rune at the top of the stairs & he happily obliged by walking over it. Kaboom !! I gave out a roar & charged in with my flame sword to slash him a few times before he fell to the ground screaming my name. DIE !!

Victorious I looted him & lock-picked his chest to take all his gold & returned to Whiterun with a smile on my face. The companions were suitably impressed that I had taken care of a group of vampires & asked me if I wanted another job. I declined & told them I would be back, I had accepted a job from the Temple of Kynareth to restore the gildergreen tree.

That's a job for tomorrow, now it's time to go get some food & rest.


Video - Wished I lived in video games

Skyrim Diary - Entry 3 - Vampires

Dear Diary

Clearing the cave of vampires was difficult, very difficult. I had to retreat because trying to fight them with my sword & shield was not killing them fast enough without me & Lydia getting overwhelmed.

I went back to Whiterun & researched the books I had collected and speaking to the town-folk found out that vampires are weak to fire. Thus I needed to do some training in destruction magic to improve my skill with using flame magic. I also learnt a fire rune spell which lets me cast magic on the ground & when an enemy walks on that ground they suffer from fire damage.

With my new found knowledge I decided to return back to the cave to take on the vampires again, entering the cave there is a long path on which I decided to place a fire rune & then my plan was to lure the vampires onto the rune. In theory it would have worked if it was not for Lydia, she has this habit of charging in to take on any enemy that catches her sight.

I backed out of the cave, told Lydia to wait outside & went in on my own. I placed the fire rune spell at the end of the path & lured the vampires onto the rune & this caused the rune to ignite with flames causing quite a lot of damage to the three vampires that were following me. I then equipped my shield & flame magic to finish them off. Job done or so I thought?

I went back out of the cave to ask Lydia to accompany me, just in case if there was any good loot that needed collecting. She seemed quite annoyed that I had left her outside, I explained why & she just shrugged. The path led to an open area filled with crypts & urns, I put my conscience to one side & looted all the urns & crypts because they were filled with gold & jewels.

A set of stairs led to another level where I was met by a Master Vampire who was casting frost and life drain spells against us. I did not have any time to think about casting any fire magic or using my fire rune because in a few short seconds he had stripped Lydia & I of half our health, I just turned around and ran for the exit of the cave.

Outside the cave I healed Lydia & myself before returning back home to Whiterun.


Skyrim Diary - Entry 2 - The Companions

Dear Diary

Dragons, if it was not for a dragon I would not be writing this entry but my head would have been chopped off in Helgen.

After killing my first dragon outside Whiterun I have seen quite a few roaming the sky's. They are very majestic & beautiful the way they fly around commanding the sky.

I went to visit the guardian stones near Riverwood & saw a dragon flying above I don't know why but I ran? Is it because I was scared? No I don't think so? maybe a little but after killing the first dragon which was more of an impulse kill, I did not want to kill another dragon because I could. I want to find out more about them & why they are in skyrim? Maybe I should go visit the greybeards?

In Whiterun there is a guild of warriors calling themseleves the Companions, all of them are quite big-headed & I would not mind knocking some of them down a peg or two so decided to join. I had to do a couple of courier quests for them by dropping off a sword to be sharpen & delivering a shield.

They have now given me a quest to go and clear a cave of vampires - vampires !! blood sucking vampires !!

Wish me luck !!


Skyrim Diary - Entry 1 - The Dragonborn

Dear Diary

Sorry I have not posted in a while the last few days have been very eventful.

The imperials mistook me for a stormcloak rebel & carted me off to Helgen. They also captured the leader of the rebels Ulfric Stormcloak. I thought they would end up just putting us in jail but they wanted to make an example out of us & sentenced us all to death by be-heading.

With my head on the chopping block, I was starting to think my life of adventure would end before it even started but luckily I was saved because a Dragon attacked the town & in all the commotion that followed I managed to escape with Ralof (Stormcloak Rebel) to the town of Riverwood.

A Dragon !! How I got out of Helgen alive I never know, what a fierce terryfying creature.

Ralof asked me to join the rebels but I have not yet decided where I stand on the civil war although I am a bit pissed off that the imperials wanted to behead me.

I managed to do a few jobs in Riverwood to get myself equipped with some armour & a weapon. Also helped out a local lad Sven get his girl & he is now happy to follow me on my adventures. It's useful having Sven along because he can help carry more loot to sell.

After helping the Riverwood Traders get a treasure back from some Bandits I decided it was time to move on to the town of Whiterun where after speaking to the Jarl Barlgruuf I was asked to go with his housecarl Irileth to investigate the sighting of a dragon near the western watchtower.

When we got to the tower it was destroyed & under attack by a dragon, I don't know what came over me but I went charging in with my sword & attacked the beast. After taking a few knocks I managed to slay the dragon. What followed was really odd in that I could see the soul of the dragon rise & then get sucked into my body. It felt really strange but I don't know why I actually enjoyed it.

The soldiers are all calling me "Dragonborn" !?

I have no idea what they are on about either but I would lie if I said I am not loving my new found fame and attention :)

Reporting back to the Jarl he explained that a Dragonborn is that who is born with the soul of a dragon & that I should go visit the Greybeards in High Hrothgar (Yes I am also wondering if they do actually have greybeards?). Imagine that !! Me ! Valdarr just an ordinary Nord is the Dragonborn !!

I've not been to High Hrothgar yet but I have been spending a lot of time in Whiterun doing various jobs & quests.

I also said goodbye to Sven & let him go back to Riverwood because when I defeated the dragon Jarl gave me a housecarl. Her name is Lydia, she is a good fighter but a bit miserable at times & hates carrying my loot "I am sworn to carry your burdens" she moans all the time.

I also purchased a house in Whiterun called "Breezehome", it is nice to have a house to store items I have collected. You will be glad to know that I am continuing my hobby of collecting books, I have over 60 now. The house is next to a blacksmith & they have kindly let me use their forge to hone my smithing skill.

What else can I tell you? I have made brief visits to other towns like Riften, Windhelm & Winterhold to complete quests. I've also learnt my first dragon shout "Unrelenting Force" I say "Fus" and this power comes out & pushes enemies out of my path. I'm also trying to learn archery & improve my magic skills, these might take a while because you know I'm more of a sword & shield person. I purchased a horse from the local stables so I can venture out further from town if needed.

I have to go now the blacksmith is about to open next door & I need to improve my smithing skill so I can learn how to make Dragon Armour.


Rage - Completed

Since the Large Mutant Card incident I lost my love for this game quite a bit but I was determined that my gaming ocd will not get the better of me & I would see this game though to completion.

This I did by sticking to the main quest line & not getting distracted by any races, acheivements or mini games I arrived in Capital Prime to take down the authority, expecting a big firefight I came fully stocked on ammo & weapons to only be met with a simple hacking challenge & very few enemies. No big boss fight or an epic assault sequence?

What a lacklusture ending to the game, did "id" get bored making the game by then? Is it setting up for a potential sequel?

Not sure but I had enough of Rage & it was time to go visit Skyrim


Words with Friends - Changes

Version 4.10.1 updated the app to include a store

• Tile Pile shows you how many of each letter is left!
• Word-O-Meter tells you how strong your word is relative to all words your rack can create! 

Yes you read that correct after newtoy were bought out by Zynga it was only a matter of time that the app would get monetized & it took them a while but you can now buy credits to cheat in the game.

What a shame !! What a way to ruin a great game.
I hope the app gets updated so the opposing player knows that you used one of these skills against them.

Anyhow I will still keep the app because there are a few regular players I play who I trust to not buy into Zynga's money cow & cheat in the game.

But I must also welcome back Wordfued which has a nice shuffle board feature to vary the tiles on the board or you can play a standard board.


My username on both games is gospvg, so send me an invite if you want a game (Although I seem to spending a lot of time in Skyrim at the moment)


New Logo - Skyrim

New Logo - Adventure Awaits
With Rage completed it is time to play my first Elder Scrolls game and adventure awaits in Skyrim

Old Logo - Obsessive Compulsive


Say What You See - The Collection

Say what you see - The Collection is a "I spy with my little eye" game in that you have to look at the canvas and try and guess the answers.

There are lots of different canvases from Movies, Music to TV but my favourite is obviously the video game canvas.

The game is free & comes with 2 free canvases to get you started so what are you waiting for SAY WHAT YOU SEE !!

Link to app http://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/say-what-you-see-the-collection/id397730496?mt=8


New Tuesday A to Z - B (games never played)

Bioshock - I started playing this on the PC & a few days later I purchased the 360 console & the rest is history. I never went back to my PC to game again. It was one of my first purchases for the 360 console but I have yet to play it, I also have the sequel sat on the shelf & with Bioshock Infinite next year maybe 2012 could be the year that I play the trilogy

Broken Sword - Point & Click adventures is one genre that I have never been interested in, they just seem so boring. Imagine my disappointment at the Telltale Back to the Future games :(

Beyond Good & Evil - Purchased for the PS2 (Never Played), Purchased for the gamecube (Never Played) & recently purchased for XBLA - Only time will tell if I finally get round to playing it?

Black & White - Did it get a console release? God like sim game I think? not sure never interested me enough to play on the PC.

Brain Training - Came & went with so many DS purchases but I never felt the need to train my brain, it's BIG enough already :)


Carcassonne - Expansions The River with Inns & Cathedrals

Finally expansions have arrived on the Carcassonne app in the form of in-app purchases. You get for 69p The River Expansion which adds 12 new tiles which you must play at the start of the game. I think the idea behind this is to divide the board up into different playing fields.

For £1.49 you get Inns & Cathedrals which add 18 new tiles you can use during gameplay, Inns double the points you get for Roads they are next to & Cathedrals when placed inside cities give you bonus points for each tile in the city.

Also you can now decide when starting a game to either include the expansions but also you now have two modes which I call Kid mode & Hardcore mode. Kid mode allows you to turn off placing meeple's on fields & Hardcore mode hides the remaining tiles in play.

It is great to have some expansion packs to what is easily in my opinion the best game on the appstore.


Gaming OCD

Gaming OCD - Obsessive compulsive disorder that manifests during gaming. A person may not have OCD in real life, but will display OCD behavior in a game with exhausting inventory organization, breaking every possible breakable object in the room or always reaching the level cap.

The "Large Mutant" collector card incident recently in Rage has bought my gaming OCD to my attention.
Why must I spend hours doing every little sidequest, collecting every card & getting achievements?

Why does it take me much longer to complete a game and yet Abbas will run through it and complete it in a fifth of the time?

The incident in Rage has taken me to a crossroad. Do I restart the game having already put in 18 hours? or Do I continue playing the game ignoring my OCD tendencies to complete it and move on?

Time is a very precious commodity and like previously in my gaming years once I realise a game has made me waste that time I will forever hate that game. Previous examples of this I can recall are Half Life 2 after playing for 20 odd hours I got to a section where I had to activate a door & the game stopped dead, I could not go any further, my response was to delete the game.

Dungeon Siege 2 on the PC having played for 40+ hours I was nearing the end of the game when I was hit by a game saving bug that wiped out all of my 6 save files, on that occasion I snapped the disc in half.

Rage oh Rage !! what shall I do with thee? Your poor gaming design choices have stopped my gaming OCD by not allowing me to collect a card I need to complete the achievements for "Collect Them All" & "Obsessive Compulsive"

I spent time playing your mini-games, competing in your races ensuring I would finish first, purchasing schematics & completing sidequest upon sidequest !!

And you then go WALLOP !! me around the face by not allowing me to collect a card !!

But is that your fault or my gaming OCD?
Leaving the minigames, sidequests & races to one side and coming back to the main game. Have you stopped me playing that? Have you caused me to get stuck in a lift I cannot advance from? Have you deleted all my gamesaves? No but what you have done is bought my gaming OCD to my attention, be it the fault of "Achievements" or me the "Gamer"

I will learn from this & I will change.

To start with I am not going to leave you unfinished, I will finish you BUT & it's a big BUT my love and enjoyment for you has gone & it is has been replaced by Anger & RAGE !!

Lost Planet 2 - Completed

A very confusing story line, odd graphical designs (Toby swears he saw a half-naked woman), quirky gameplay mechanics, very Japanese in style I suppose but another great co-op gaming experience.

The boss fights in the game were very challenging having to figure out how to take them out with little or no information. The co-op gameplay which has you working together to control the train, use the gun turret & control your ship whilst attacking your enemies. There are some really nice touches to the gameplay it is just a shame some attention did not go into the storyline & voice acting.

The basic gist of the storyline is you play different factions who come together to save the planet by destroying an Over G monster. When I type it out like that it seems simple but in practice you do not realise what is happening until you get to near the end of the game.

The difficulty spikes in the game had us on occasions changing back to easy level to advance in the game before returning to normal. Maybe that was because we had 1 CPU character, possibly with an additional player we might have fared better. Next on the UGVM PMG schedule is Dead Island in the new year.


Rage - Large Mutant Card - Gotta Have 'Em All & Obsessive Compulsive

There are two achievements in the game one for collecting all 54 collector cards in one play-through "Gotta Have 'Em All" & "Obsessive Compulsive" which is 100% completion in the campaign. To do this you need to get first in all races, complete sidequests, mini-games, vehicle jumps, schematics, job board missions & obviously collecting all the cards. You can check your progress by looking at your stats screen in the game.

You should have 94/130 when leaving the town of Wellspring

ID (The developers) decided to make some of these collector cards miss-able in that if you do not collect them on your first visit to a location then TOUGH LUCK !!

I missed the Large Mutant card on my first visit to Dead City, when I went back to get the card I was locked out by a door that would not let me return to the wasteland.

After some researching I read you would visit Dead City again so I continued to play the game & when the time came to visit Dead City again the card was not there at it's location. This then left me with two options either restart the game or ignore those acheivements and continue the game.

Obsessive Compulsive is that a piss take from ID to gamers like me who take their time playing games and visit every location & complete every sidequests or maybe it is a warning to gamers like me to stop, think & take stock of what they are doing when playing games.

...pondering ..


Rage - Jackpot

Possibly one of the most annoying achievements in the game is in the mini-game of tombstones, you have to get a roll of 4 targets on the first attempt.

Annoyingly I managed it a few times on the 2nd attempt but it took me a long time to get it on the first roll.

I would play for 10 minutes per time when visiting Wellspring otherwise it got very annoying but it is an easy way to get some cash when playing with the $25 bet. Although the comet bloom glitch is the easiet


NEW Tuesday A to Z - A (games never played)

The spaghetti filled toast is back for the next chapter in the A to Z saga. This time it will be a list of games I have never played or have left unfinished.

These are not just any games but games that make any 30 year old hardcore gamer go WTF !! you have never played that?!!

There will be a maximum limit of only 5 titles per letter, otherwise on some letters I will be writing forever....

So without further ado I give you the letter A

Assassins Creed
Even though this shows up on my xbox 360 gamerscore it was Abbas who played it on my account before he had his own gamertag. I forgot but at the time I must have been playing something else, when released I thought it's just another Lara Croft/Prince of Persia clone thus ignored it's charms until the second game was released & grabbed my attention. I do hope at some point to play this game but the story seems to have moved on.

Animal Crossing
Farm building. looking after animals sim type game which has never interested me at all.

Aliens vs Predator
One of my missed opportunities when owning a Jaguar console, probably would have scared the crap out of me but I will never know.

Alien Soldier
Treasure are rated quite highly as a software developer but I have yet to still play this 2d platformer.

Another World
Too busy playing with music software to really play any games on my Atari Ste, I predict an app store release in the near future.


V1.1 - Noughts & Crosses

Abbas has updated his first app with new graphics & added more themes. I am very proud of the time & effort he has spent into making this app & look forward to his next project.

App Link


Assault Heroes - Co-op Carnage Completed

After completing Turtles in Time Re-Shelled last weekend with Monster it was time to continue the playing of the XBLA purchases with Assault Heroes.

This is a twin stick shooter in which you use the left stick to control the vehicle & the right stick to control the directions of your weapon. You have three weapon types Minigun, Cannon & Flamethrower. All of these weapons can be upgraded to increase damage & rate of fire by collecting the pick-ups.

You have unlimited ammo in the game so you can blast away to your hearts content. I found the flamethrower cause more damage but it's range is very short so you have to get in very close to attack your enemies. The minigun has a very fast rate of fire but has the weakest attack & the cannon lets you sit back and fire over long distances but has a very slow fire rate.

Damage to your vehicle heals over time & if your vehicle does get destroyed you have to control your soldier on foot whilst your vehicle re-spawns. You also have grenades & nukes which you can use to destroy enemies but I tend to save these for the boss fights. You can easily complete the game in a couple of hours but ramp up the difficulty if you fancy a challenge.

Next weekend? Gatling Gears

Angry Birds - Wreck The Halls

The Angry Birds Advent calendar is back this year on Angry Birds Seasons. Last year was fun competing with the boys & Xexyzx & Jochta. They are all back this year to try and three star all the levels.

The new levels unlock at 8am each morning, all building up to Christmas day.