Archive for June, 2012

But I haven’t thought of you lately at all

by Ashelia. 1 Comment

I wanted to post sort of a personal post about what’s been up. A lot of cool things have happened lately work related!

  • We launched LolKing and it’s lived up to my wildest dreams in terms of traffic so far. A new site is always daunting because you’re not sure how the public will react–I found the site back in March and we ended up buying it, from that point on I begged to be a part of its development. A lot of the work I did is in the database, so you can go see all the champions if you want to see something I spent hours on. The prettiest part of the site is probably its model viewer which was done by my coworker Alayton. In general it’s been really rewarding helping map out a site from the ground up! The guys who work on the site are also great, both as developers and League of Legends fans, so it’s been pretty awesome to watch them work.
  • Part of being site director at Wowhead means I decide really random things and that’s by far my favorite part of the job. I got an email from Zarhym with some beta keys. We gave them away and they went fast: nearly 4k posts in a few hours asking for keys. So I emailed him back and asked for more keys, figuring I could get a little contest going. Turns out he’s a generous guy, so he handed us hundreds more. Then I reached out to ZAM’s marketing team, secured us some A40 Astro headsets, and made a contest from scratch all last minute like. Yes, it created extra work, but we also get to give out free things and interact with the community–it’s really awesome!
  • I’ve been playing a lot of Civilization V lately due to its expansion coming out this past week. I really like it, though I don’t really enjoy espionage. I didn’t like it in Civilization IV either. Part of the problem is I don’t play on difficulty levels where the AI has much more tech than I do–they’re usually neck and neck with me, so there’s not much to steal. I love how many female leaders were added, though, especially Boudicca. She’s my favorite Civ IV leader so I was happy to see her back in.
  • My cousin’s fundraiser for her diabetic alert dog went pretty well! She’s at $5.5k. The dog unfortunately costs nearly $30k, but thanks to some people on Twitter and Reddit, I was able to bring in over $1k alone and do my part. They wrote a thank you post to everyone over here.

Not much else to really write about. Just trying to eat healthy, work out (I didn’t do anything for all of May because I’m lazy), and playing a lot of League of Legends!

It could be wrong, but it should have been right

by Ashelia. 1 Comment

My mom wants to write a children’s book. She read a few books on it recently and they all pretty much told her she wouldn’t make it which really discouraged her. One of them said 7% of people who try to get published actually get published.

“You’re just saying it to encourage me,” she said when I told her I loved her plot.

“You know it’s something I need to do before I die so you’re saying it’s good so I’ll do it,” she said when I told her I loved her plot for the second time.

“It’s hard for you to be unbiased,” she said when I told her I loved her plot for the third time.

I wasn’t. I really liked her plot. It has a twist that I think is adorable and I think it works. If I had kids, I’d read it to them. But I don’t, and that’s probably a good thing that I don’t, so I’ll read it to my cat. She’d like it because she likes to hear me speak. And I’d like it because it’s a clever plot and my mom’s pretty fucking cool for a mom sometimes.

But anyway, that’s not the point. The real point is the world is basically filled with how-to’s and naysayers. Oftentimes they’re the same thing. Look up a resume guide, watch them tell you exactly how to write your resume to get maximum views by recruiters. Then follow that exact template and watch as you get no replies in your inbox because that guide wasn’t completely right and you relied too heavily on it.

The video game industry is really bad at this. I got told so many times my resume was bad by all kinds of people (to be fair, I got told it was good and I got helped by so many others, so this isn’t to say the entire industry is bad or anything). But I got a lot of interviews and callbacks and eventually a great job. I’m thankful for every single callback, too, because they taught me to value my instinct a little more. To believe in myself. That kind of shit.

Anyway, they tell you a lot of times what you can and can’t do. The thing is, you rarely stop and question who they are–and why they’re telling you that you can’t do it. Sometimes it’s just because they like having the power and they would be sad if you got some power too. Other times it’s because they’re negative. And sometimes, very rarely, it is because they’re right but you should never let that discourage you or take their word for it.

You can pretty much do anything you really want to. Even if you can’t, even if it really is the impossible, I’ll tell you this: if you don’t try, you’ll find yourself regretting it someday.

I sincerely hope my mom writes her book and illustrates her pictures. I hope I get to help her get it published because, like I said: I loved her plot. Her artwork ain’t half bad either.

Ennui 3

by Ashelia. 0 Comments

I wanted to see a new Zelda or a remake of an old Zelda. I wanted to see Ghost Trick 2 or another quirky game in a similar vein. I wanted to see a sequel to Red Dead Redemption. I wanted to see Theme Hospital rise from the ashes as a new project. I wanted to see a new RPG similar to how Dragon Age blew us away a few years back.

I wanted to see something creative, outside the box, and unexpected.

But mostly I really just wanted E3 to contain something I could look forward to. This year’s event seemed old and stale, its actual emphasis more on the living room than video games themselves. Almost everything was already covered, months prior, and none of it looked that interesting. Games I wanted to be excited for troubled me, like Beyond (Heavy Rain was too much of a narrative experience–will Beyond be the same?) and Sim City (the deluxe edition versus standard edition bonuses scare me–will it be just like The Sims 3 and have too much emphasis on expansions and the in-game store?). The Last of Us was the only game I could truly say I was excited for that got significant time at the conference’s press events and that’s largely because I think it will say something new in a genre as overdone as the zombie genre is.

Oh, and Watch Dogs looked interesting I guess.

I still have games I’m looking forward to, like Torchlight 2 or CS:GO or Grand Theft Auto V or Borderlands 2. And I still have Resident Evil 6, which I’ll probably enjoy because I like Leon S. Kennedy a whole bunch. Gaming isn’t dead to me, but maybe large scale press events are–the hype machine certainly is.

It just seems to me like Nintendo and other studios are missing the mark. Nintendo could make a killing with the Zelda franchise if they returned to its roots, but instead we got the third Super Mario remake in the past year. There could have been a new Pok√©mon announcement that strayed from its template of city to city, gym badge to gym badge, but there wasn’t and there probably won’t be.

And while everyone digs the idea of playing Elder Scrolls with their BFF, perhaps a MMORPG isn’t the solution–I can’t be the only one who thinks Elder Scrolls look generic and tired as a MMO, especially when compared to Skyrim. In fact, maybe co-op in the Skyrim expansion could have gotten our feet wet instead of this MMO business.

Oh well. We’ll see what happens. For now I’ve got League of Legends to play and the Civilization V expansion coming out this month to look forward to. That will have to do.