May 28, 2011

Back to business

Relationships are like flowers. Some bloom slowly, others fast. Some are beautiful, others stink. Overall- they all come to an end. Whether its a breakup, divorce or a death it all sucks just as hard - you just need to pick up the pieces and move on.

So if you haven't picked up on it yet, yes I am back to the single life. Back at home with my parents for the time being and while that may suck just a bit I have found the silver lining. Games and Flying. I no longer have the financial, time or commitment responsibilities of living in your own home with a partner and her child which means I have a lot more time and money to concentrate on getting my flying career started and kick back with a cold one and some games!

I have my eye on LA Noire at the moment. From the reviews I have heard it is slow and somewhat repetitive, but if I wanted something fast paced I would get a racing game or load up Halo or COD. What fascinates me about this game is the level of detail they have gone into for it. Mapping the voice actors faces so that when the deliver their lines and get into character- the are recording their facial expression as well. This leads to one of their main point in the game - interrogation and more realisitic on screen performances from the characters. I give this a big plus. And also its new intellectual property. For too long we have had too many sequels. Mass Effect, Halo, Star Wars, Call of Duty, Medal of Honour, Assassins Creed - all big names, all of them sell video games and all of them have made millions for their developers. But they aren't "new".

 They reuse the old characters, bring in a couple new ones, update gameplay and give you the next installment in the canon of that universe. But they usually dont bring a lot of "new" to the table. Sure Halo 3 was the first Halo game for the 360, Mass Effect 2 did away with the item upgrade process and Gears of War 2 let you use enemies as shields. Halo 3 didn't bring much to the actual game play except add in the equipment and talked itself up a lot. I loved the game and even bought the Legendary Edition with the Spartan helmet- but it didnt give me the same level of amazement and awe that the original Halo: Combat Evolved gave me when I first encountered the Flood, when I saw what happened to Keyes and the climactic race against the clock to escape the Pillar of Autumn. In fact, Halo 3 borrowed a lot of the final sequence from Halo: CE just removed the timer and gave you more things to fall off. Gears 2 was just like Gears 1 with a bit more vehicles, meat shields and really not much else. Mass Effect 2 was brilliant don't get me wrong- but I kinda liked to mess around with my weapons and armour. I love the RPG element to it, enhancing, buying and selling and creating armour and guns to suit my playstyle, my group type and give me a level of personalisation that ME2 just didnt give me. Sure you can change the colour and look of the armour to a certain extent but its still the same armour. LA Noire will be something NEW and the level of immersion I am expecting from actually having to pay attention to the witnesses facial expressions will no doubt fascinate me to the level of which the hidden blade did in Assassin's Creed. You know you rampaged around just killing people indiscriminately with that bad boy. Don't deny it.

As far as my flying is going, it seems that I am cursed. I keep working on beautiful blue sky days and have bookings on days with horrible amounts of cloud, rain and wind. Last weekend I was forced to just do a few circuits at 500' for a check ride on a R182. Couldnt get any higher than that. This weekend looks to be better but still cloudy. Yesterday (Friday) was clear, light wind and just a nice comfortable 22 degrees. Could not have asked for a better flying day. Today the cloud base looks to be around the 3000 - 5000' base mark which is still flyable but just doesnt give the smooth ride and excellent view that 8000 or 9000' gives you. It is a shame but it is out of my control.

I have a job I am aiming for at least. Advertised in the paper and online, there is a mob down in Victoria who do aerobatic joy flights in Tiger Moths as well as scenic flights and parachuting along the Great Ocean Road. Sounds like a brilliant first job. Won't be huge hours but it will be fun and it is a start. Without having to quit my job and do an instructors rating. Win.

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