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Sep 13, 2012 - 12:25 AM
Silverball Studios giving away Big Race USA for FREE
You guys all know about the Pro Pinball kickstarter where they plan on making a brand new Pro Pinball game under the talent of Pat Lawlor, responsible for some of the best pinball tables ever made, and to remaster the existing tables under the Pro Pinball line.

Anyway, they're now giving away Big Race USA for FREE on the Kickstarter page, under the Latest News section. Also, If you pledge $2 or more, you can get two more games, Fantastic Journey and Timeshock.

The Pro Pinball series is often regarded as one of the best pinball simulations ever made, and BR USA is my favourite in the series. Grab your copy now!!




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Jan 30, 2012 - 05:36 PM
PC issues
When I turn on PC in the morning, I get a jumble of colours and lines. Once it loads the section where you choose whatever Windows profile you want, the screen goes back to normal. If I choose to restart or shut down and restart at this point, everything was all jumbled up before is no longer jumbled. If I shut it down overnight and turn it on next day, the same thing starts again. It appears that whenever the PC is off for a while, the problem occurs but not while it's actually turned on.

Is my video card failing or is it something else?

P.S. I can't test on another PC to see if it's the card or not but you can tell what the most likely culprit is.


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Nov 15, 2011 - 09:02 PM
UK TRIP 2: HP TOUR
Response to: UK Trip 2: V & A MUSEUM by Freelance

Thought I should finish this thing and get it over with.

Sorry, but I er, haven't updated anything in a while because of all the 3DS (and 1 PC) game that I've happened to come across in a small frame of time and made me neglect my journal but all is well! I only have one post left anyway and here it is!

So that Wednesday night after we last left off, we went to the Harry Potter tour. Isn't that exciting? There's too many HP fans though, as it was pretty crowded when we arrived at the tube starting point. I bet only some of them were fans had had either dragged their HP ignorant parents along with them or made their non HP friends come along or bad things will happen to them.

Anyway, the tour is about HP naturally, but they also talk about lots of other things that inspired J.K. Rowling to place inside her books such as the Knights Templar and other things that I unfortunately had forgotten. Sorry! Here's the random photos to entertain you.

Spoiler:


Big crowd.


Not related to HP but this was once the most expensive house at the time it was built.





A church connected to the Templars but I forgot the name of it. It was pretty big and dark so it was impossible to take good shots of it. It could be the Trinity Church but I'm not sure.






Nothing at all related to HP but the group passed this building on the way to a site and it just took my breath away. It's the Royal Courts of Justice and this castle doo-hicky is located right by a major street.



Some pubs which may have inspired the Leaky Cauldron.




Gringotts Bank is actually Australia House.






One of these stores is where J.K. Rowling used to work.






On Thursday we flew home and to my utter delight, the 3DS recharges fine so there is nothing wrong with it!! YAYYYY!!!! Dunno why it didn't work overseas though.

Movies I've seen on the trip:

Transformers 3
Rango (on PSP)
Sinbad (that animated movie from Dreamworks) *
Flushed Away *
Kung Fu Panda 2

Unfortunately I tend to get sleepy during a plane ride and slept threw most of FA and missed some of Sinbad. Too bad though. It was nice seeing a hand drawn animated movie again after so long and the movie itself wasn't bad.



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Nov 6, 2011 - 11:32 AM
UK Trip 2: V & A MUSEUM
Response to: UK Trip 2: LONDON by Freelance

So now that (one) crisis has been averted, we went to the V & A Museum which is a shortened version of Victoria and Albert. As the name indicates, it was named after Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. V & A is the world's largest museum of decorative arts and design.

Since we were not aware the strike had been averted until the day of, we didn't bother to recharge the camera battery seeing as we had no need to do so. Too bad for us, the camera didn't have much of a charge left by the time Wednesday came around so it was not possible to take too many photos of the V&A.

My sister took most of the photos so I don't know what most of these things are.

Spoiler:


















One of Leonardo da Vinci's books.










Spoiler:




A writing box.











The court of Elizabeth I.






Embroidered panels.




The Hunsdon jewels. These were given as a gift to Elizabeth I's cousin, Henry Carey, 1st Baron Hunsdon.


The Drake jewel. Elizabeth I gave this jewel to Sir Francis Drake.


Virginals.






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Nov 1, 2011 - 07:37 PM
UK Trip 2: LONDON
Random photos on the streets of London.

Before I do that, here's what happened next.

WEDNESDAY OCTOBER 16

So here was the fateful day where we had to go back home because of a potential strike situation at Air Canada. Or was it?

I got a call from my sister at 6:30am (remember, we have separate rooms) that day and she told me she checked the news (she wakes up earlier than me) and had learned the strike had been averted. YAY! Good news indeed! Of course, that didn't solve my 3DS problem but we could now go to the museums we were planning on going to, and also the Harry Potter tour that night.

All that museum stuff will be in the next update though.

LONDON
Nothing terribly exciting.

Spoiler:







We always come here when we go to the UK. It has this Hoisin duck wrap that's soooooo good.








A National Geographic store.


Some chocolates at Harrods. Harrods is the only department store I know that has a dress code, and they're pretty harsh. They're the only UK dept. store that still sells furs too. BOOOO!!!









A little place we stopped to once for lunch. Their fish and chips wasn't that good though. Kinda dry.
















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Oct 31, 2011 - 01:32 PM
If you like casual-type games, look here
I just got a postcard from Big Fish Games with a 'get any game for $2.99!' promo as I'm a (free) member there. This applies to any game except for any Collector's editions. It's not the same promo going on right now on their website as it's only for new customers.

Does anyone want to take advantage of this offer? It expires Nov 15th. I'd have used it myself but right now I don't want to get anymore 'games other than the main ones I am planning to get this year' for a bit (for reasons I will not explain) and my last 'random' game (Gabriel Knight 3 which I got just yesterday for $2.99) is good enough for me at the present.

First come first served.




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Oct 29, 2011 - 10:15 AM
UK Trip 2: BRIGHTON and GHOST TOUR
Response to: BRITISH MUSEUM PART 2: ROMAN AND GREEK (Plus Others) by Freelance

Haha I forgot I took photos of the city of Brighton before I went to the Royal Pavilion so here they are now. Remember that I went to Brighton on day 2 of the trip.

Spoiler:
















Cornish pasties! Delicious! I got the traditional one with potatoes and some veggies. Unfortunately this was the first and also the last time I've seen a cornish pasty store. Wish I could've had more : /





So continuing onto the present on the trip...

On the same day where it was discovered we had to go back a day early and that my 3DS is fried to bits and pieces (a bit of an exaggeration there but still sad all the same), we went on one of the many walking ghost tours that evening (Tuesday). These ghost tours are usually two hours.

Sorry, but I can't remember every single ghost story that the tour guide mentioned so if there's no caption for a photo please come to the conclusion that I just simply don't remember the significance of why I took it.

Note that some of the photos were brightened some for they were too dark to see in the original shots.

Spoiler:


The pathway which ends at the area where the infamous Newgate Prison once stood. It has been demolished. All the more evil criminals were placed there and there's a big black dog that roams that street. Legend has it that back in the time of a great famine, a man was imprisoned at Newgate, charged with sorcery. His cellmates tore him to bits and ate him. That very night, they themselves were torn to bits by a huge black dog. Once the victim was avenged, it disappeared and from that day on, it would appear on the evening before every execution and it leaves behind the smell of death when it disappears. The little street in the photo is called "Deadman's Walk." It was where prisoners walked to be executed.





The only remaining bit remaining of this church (sorry, forgot which church).




This area was once a public execution site where they hanged seven people at a time.


The tavern beside the public execution site where people can eat while watching the hangings. In the cellar was there the prisoners would wait until it was their turn to die, and sometimes they can wait a long while before there's seven in total to hang. There's a ghost lurking in the cellar which they call Fred.


A memorial dedicated to the great London fire.


A memorial for Sir William Wallace.





This area here was where they dug a deep pit where they tossed in infected people in the great plague. Instead of helping them, they'd just toss them in the pit with the corpses since they're going to die anyway. They may also lock you up in your own house and let you starve to death if they have reason to suspect you have it. Just like witches, if someone hated you, they could just say you have the plague and that is enough for them to board you up, whether you have it or not.



The area where the ghost of Isabella of France, Queen consort to Edward II of England can be found. Legend has it that Isabella hated him and conspired with Roger Mortimer to kill him. If she did, she wasn't caught. Another legend states that Edward II was killed by shoving a red hot poker up his butt. Nice, but today experts don't believe that's what happened. Funny thing though. After she died they put his heart in her hands so if she really did have him killed, that'd be really ironic.



Just wanted to take a photo of the full moon.




After the tour we were on our way back when we got hungry and decided to eat at one of the many Chinese restaurants near the hotel. I ordered vermicelli noodle soup with roast duck in it. Man it was soooo gooood. The soup actually had some flavour in it.



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Oct 25, 2011 - 08:34 PM
BRITISH MUSEUM PART 2: ROMAN AND GREEK (Plus Others)
Response to: BRITISH MUSEUM PART 1: CHINESE AND EGYPTIAN by Freelance

Roman

Spoiler:

Venus


Apollo and Artemis slaying the children of Niobe. At the top of this decorative marble roundel, Apollo and Artemis are shooting Niobe's children with deadly arows to avenge their mother, the goddess Leto. Niobe had insulted Leto by claiming to be a superior mother.










Diadoumenos, statue of an athlete tying a victor's ribbon around his head.
Roman, 1st century AD, version of a Greek original of about 440BC from Italy.
Known as the Farnese Diadoumenos, this work is a marble copy of a bronze original, sometimes attributed to the Greek sculptor Pheidias.


Greek warrior




Marble statue of Apollo holding a kithara.


Molossian Hound.
Molossian hounds were related to the modern mastiff and were famously fierce. They were often used as guard dogs by herdsmen and for household security in cities. Aristophanes, the fifth-century comic dramatist, speaks of the hazards of trying to get past a doorway guarded by a Molossian dog, while the infamous Athenian statesman and general Alcibiades is said to have kept one with a docked tail.

This dog once wore a collar. Its gaping jaws show powerful teeth, but the relaxed pose and upward gaze give it an obedient air. Five other versions of this sculpture, all found near Rome, are thought to be Roman copies of a lost Greek bronze original, probably of the 2nd century BC. This version is sometimes known as the 'Jennings Dog,' because it was once owned by Henry Constantine Jennings (1731-1819), who brought it in Rome in the 1750s.



Bronze statuette of a huntsman, probably representing Alexander the Great.








Spoiler:


The apotheosis of Homer.




Marble statue of Demeter.


Slab from a frieze of the Mausoleum showing a battle between Lapiths and Centaurs.












Hellenistic seal-stones.







GREEK

Wish I had taken more photos. Most of it are vases.

Spoiler:




















OTHERS

Spoiler:


KHORSABAD: THE PALACE OF SARGON
This section mainly contains sculptures from the city and palace of Khorsabad, built for the Assyrian king Sargon II (721-705 BC). The pair of human-headed winged bulls stood originally at one of the gates of the citadel, as magic guardians against misfortune.







I think these are Native American.



This crocodile mask was made in the Torres Strait Island, northern Australia, in the late 1800s. Maino, the chief of Iama and Tudu islands, said it was worn at 'death dances,' as well as general dances or kap. The teeth are metal saw blades and the main part of the mask is made of wo***.


*** Sorry, but the photo got cut off there.



CLOCKS

The museum had a special clock exhibit.

Spoiler:






A ship clock. Can you find the clock?










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Oct 23, 2011 - 04:42 PM
BRITISH MUSEUM PART 1: CHINESE AND EGYPTIAN
Response to: UK Trip 2: BRIGHTON (ROYAL PAVILION) and HAMLEYS by Freelance

So continuing the 2nd day of the trip, in which I was still depressed, we decided to go to the British Museum. One good thing about UK museums. They're all FREE.

Okay before we continue further, no matter where we go on any trip, there's always a bunch of schoolkids on one of those dang field trips and it wouldn't be so bad if they weren't so damn loud, and on top of that they fill up the entire room and you can't see a darn thing until they go on to the next room. They even clog the subways and buses and they never shut up, ever. Japanese kids are a lot more quiet though. It's just everywhere else that's that's the problem.

Now back to the point of this entry.

The British Museum is one of the largest museums in the world and contains more than seven million items, and it's FREE.

The museum is just way too big to see everything in a day so I went to the Roman, Greek, Chinese and Egyptian wings. I also took some random shots from other departments but there's not many.

Also, there's too many photos to put in one entry so they will be split up.

BUILDING

Spoiler:












CHINESE

Spoiler:

























Spoiler:















A statue of a Garuda.





Pretty impressive.






EGYPTIAN

Spoiler:





Granodiorite statue of Amenhotep.


The Rosetta Stone




















Spoiler:


Skull with ethmoid bone intact, showing that the brain had not been removed via the nose.




















Spoiler:





Funerary amulets.





Mummified animals, even birds and crocodiles!













Spoiler:











A sarcophagus/


Limestone seated female sphinx.




A scarab statue.


The Gayer-Anderson Cat.






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Oct 22, 2011 - 02:42 PM
UK Trip 2: BRIGHTON (ROYAL PAVILION) and HAMLEYS
This trip was only for 4 days so I didn't take as many photos. Took my 3DS with me for Streetpasses, my PSP (for videos when I get to the hotel late night) and my Kobo. As usual I went to my (evil) sister. I saw TF3 on the airplane but the book was better.

When we first arrived in London, all we did was check in the hotel and to my surprise they offered to give us seperate rooms at no extra cost. Wahoo! Things sure perked up on this trip but alas it was not to be later and you will find out soon enough.

Anyway after we freshened up, we went to the stores, mainly Harrods and Hamleys. Harrods is the only dept store I know with an actual honest-to-god dress code.

Hamleys used to sell plushes and traditional toys like wooden rocking horses and things, but now they also sell typical action figures, plushes and video games. Lots of their plushes are really nice like this adorable shark I got and this really good black-footed ferret, both from the WWF. Wish I could get the ferret but it was pretty expensive. I found Sims Medieval (PC) there at a cheaper price than in Canada so I snatched that.

On the upper floors I saw some (fancy) Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter stuff. Some are pretty neat but not something I'd actually buy, such as chess sets and wands from your favourite HP characters.

Naturally that place is a total madhouse with a bajillion screaming kids running throughout the seven floors. There's a washroom on the top floor which I dared not enter. The main reason why I wanted to go there, aside from the plushes, are the Streetpasses which I assume would be plentiful with all the kids around and I was not disappointed. I actually got my first SP in a restaurant but I received four more at Hamleys and to my amazement only two of the six SPs were UK residents. Hamleys is a big tourist attraction as I've also gotten 1 from Australia, 1 from Germany and 1 from Japan. In total I now have eight 'foreign' SPs including two from the US and 1 from Aruba I got at the Eaton Centre back home.

HAMLEYS

Only view the contents below if you actually like toys and crap.

Spoiler:









Nooooo!!


Fun stuff you can do with Kinex like a dragon and a ferris wheel!



These animal figures are popular in the UK. I got several already, namely an otter, a GSD (German Shepherd Dog), an ankylosaurus and a blue shark. I actually got the GSD from Japan and the dinosaur from the Frankfurt Airport in Germany.



You can see Optimus Prime while going up the escalator to the top floor.




Spoiler:


PLUSHIES



I have a friend who loves rodents and I bet she'd love these.




One of the best ferret plushes I've seen. Most of them generally don't really look like ferrets. If it wasn't so expensive I would've gotten it.



Dogs are very popular to turn into plushes, particularly GSDs and Siberian Huskies as shown in the photo. I've seen lots at Hamleys and FAO Schwarz in Las Vegas.


The cutest GSD plush I saw there.


This looks a lot like a blue shark and they're my favourite species of shark so I was happy to get it. I don't have a blue shark plush at home.


LOTR STUFF

Didn't check to see how much these cost, and I don't want to know. First is a Nazg├╗l on a fell beast atop the eye of Sauron.


The Fellowship.


A chess set.



Frodo with Gandalf on a waggon.


HP STUFF

Wizard's Chess. It looks exact from the movie.



Various wands.



Hogwarts .




Went to dinners at Nando's which is a casual restaurant similar to Swiss Chalet. I got 1/4 chicken from fries and corn. This was the first time I tasted grilled corn. Mmmmmmm!

Spoiler:









That night my sister found out that she forgot to bring the adaptors from home to recharge our crap. Bah! If things couldn't get any worse, it did. The next day we went to Brighton to see the Royal Pavilion and when we got back to the hotel in the afternoon, we find out (through dad) that the airline may go on strike the day we were supposed to fly back! Noooo!!!!! Since we had no way of knowing if they will or not, we had to cut the trip one day early. BOOOOO!!! We were supposed to go see the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace but due to the strike issue we had to skip it. We were also supposed to go on a HP walking tour on Wednesday night too which we also had to skip. BAH!

BRIGHTON

Brighton is a seaside city that became a tourist attraction when the Royal Pavilion was built.

ROYAL PAVILION

The Royal Pavilion is a former royal residence located in Brighton, England. It was built in three campaigns, beginning in 1787, as a seaside retreat for George, Prince of Wales, from 1811 Prince Regent. It is often referred to as the Brighton Pavilion. It is built in the Indo-Saracenic style prevalent in India for most of the 19th century, with the most extravagant chinoiserie interiors ever executed in the British Isles.*

It's pretty cool inside, particularly the Ballroom and the Banqueting Room. The Banqueting Room has a huge chandelier that's held in place by a silver dragon. The lamps are six smaller dragons and when lit up it looks like the dragons are breathing fire. It is one of the most impressive thing I've seen in my life but sadly photos are not allowed and there was too many people to sneak a shot, and to make things worse, there is not a single photo of the chandelier online. Argh!!! The only way you can get a photo is if you buy one of those oversized photo guide books you can buy in the shop. Bah. If you take a look at the Wiki entry I linked to, there is a painting of the Banqueting Room there with the chandelier but it really pales in comparison to the real thing.

The Ballroom is adorned with many dragons and snakes and apparently according to Chinese superstitions it is considered bad luck. Maybe it is, because the room has been scorched by a fire and was smashed when a boulder came down from the roof during a flood, literally just after the workers finished rebuilding it from the fire earlier! The dome features over a thousand pieces that resemble scales.

There's not many photos because they're not allowed. Dagnabbit!

Spoiler:









This was right at the entrance hall.


There was a bathroom further into the palace which nobody apparently decided to head to so I was able to take a photo of this dragon. Better than nothing I suppose.




If things couldn't get any worse, it did! My sister bought an adaptor on the way back to the hotel and although it worked fine for my PSP and Kobo, it did NOT work on my 3DS and I naturally assumed the worse, that it's broken and can no longer recharge. NOOOOOO!! I never had sent in any consoles to be repaired before and wasn't sure if I'd get to keep all my DSiware and my Ambassador games, and I wouldn't be able to get more Streetpasses since I can't keep draining the battery, and Harvest Moon is set to come out soon too so imagine not having my 3DS for a month (according to their website it takes that long for it to be repaired in Canada) to play it. So anyway, that and the strike made me really depressed and proclaimed the trip the 'worst trip ever.'

*Taken from Wiki

More to come!



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