Writing Exercise #2

October 18, 2011 § Leave a comment

The prompt is: “You can never go home again.”

Lerit pulled gently on Switch’s reins and coaxed him to a stop at the crest of the hill.  The old steed grunted in protest, but eventually halted.  The small village laid out before him, nestled tightly in the small valley below.  Lerit thought that he had been prepared to see it again, but he found himself surprised by how he felt.  It had been three years since he’d left this village.  Three years since the day he’d discovered his power.  Three years since they exiled him for using it.  Three years since he’d been forced to leave his home behind.  He had expected to feel sad, or perhaps even angry at seeing the tiny village again.  But instead he found he was relieved.  It was good to see Creat again.

The trip up had been

Writing Execise #1

October 9, 2011 § Leave a comment

Here’s my first writing exercise.  The prompt was “The prince has gone missing.”

Tendrin stumbled out of the brothel and into the frigid night.  He cursed to himself as he pulled his long cloak tighter in a vain effort to keep out the harsh cold.  It was the kind of bitter, stabbing cold that chilled a man’s very soul and removed all hope of ever being warm again. Being cold forever was a fear that tugged at the back of Tendrin’s mind often as of late.  The nights were growing longer and the chill was getting colder.  It wasn’t the topic of polite conversation, but people still whispered about it.  In back rooms and around private bar tables rumors abounded that the time of The Long Night was finally at hand.

Snow piled up in heavy drifts

What the future holds (plus a bonus story)

October 4, 2010 § Leave a comment

Cataclysm is looming on the horizon, and patch 4.0.1 is right around the corner.  However, aside from telling you folks that I only log in once every other day or so to sell [Solid Sky Sapphire]’s, I have nothing WoW related to talk about right now.  But that’s not really new information.  I already told y’all I’m on hiatus–although clearly I’m not very good at hiatus-ing.  I guess it’s only a ‘sort-of hiatus’.  A kind of, ‘I-may-or-may-not-write-posts-now-but-they-won’t-be-at-all-regular-and-probably-won’t-be-WoW-related-until-Cataclysm-comes-out hiatus’.  Sometimes I really want to tell y’all an anecdote or two, but I don’t want people to be disappointed if/when I don’t write regularly.  However, I also want to make sure that y’all know that regular (the goal is to get up to twice a week again) posts of some form or another will be forthcoming upon the arrival of Cataclysm. I hope so anyway.  If not, I’ll have to re-evaluate my blogging goals.

I see one of 3 things happening:

  1. I love the expansion, it fires me up about the game again, and I continue much as I have been; passionately and intelligently discussing the game while occasionally tossing in non-WoW-related anecdotes.
  2. I only kind of like the expansion and grow bored with it rapidly.  I no longer have anything interesting to say about the game, because the game no longer holds my interest.  I let my WoW account lapse, and stop updating this blog until eventually I make one of those lame ‘farewell posts’ and 2a) stop posting, but leave all the previous posts up or 2b) delete this blog in its entirety.
  3. I loose interest in the game and/or writing about it, but still want to continue blogging.  In that event I would 3a) stop posting on this site and ‘freeze’ it–locking posts and comments–but move it to a domain name that I don’t have to pay to renew every year; 3b) completely stop posting about the game, but leave the site as is and continue to blog about whatever tickles my fancy under the guise of ‘The Cranky Old Gnome’; or 3c) archive all the WoW related posts (re: delete from this website and store them either on a free domain name or just my own hard-drive) and only talk about non-wow things.

I can’t predict the future so I can’t really say which of these things will happen.  I do know which ones are most likely.  Regardless of whether or not I enjoy Cataclysm I will keep blogging.  If I no longer want to post about World of Warcraft related topics, I will probably let this site revert back to it’s original “https://crankyoldgnome.wordpress.com/” domain name, but leave all the posts up and continue to allow comments.  Then I will probably start up a new site, and talk primarily about what it’s like to work in the entertainment industry.  Maybe call it something like “A Hard Day’s Work”.  Or something.

Now, here’s a story about my creepy roommate.

« Read the rest of this entry »

I’ll be back

September 9, 2010 § 3 Comments

So it turns out that planning a wedding takes a hell of a lot more time and energy than I first realized.  So basically, all the free time I used to have to dedicate to wow and blog writing has pretty much been swallowed up in what promises to be one hell of an awesome wedding!

With that, I’m just letting y’all know I’m not dead, and that I fully intend on coming back to the game and to the blog.  But for now, I’m on official hiatus until Cataclysm actually comes.  At which point I’ll start up again for reals.

One a different note–Operation Gnomeregan started yesterday!  My reaction to it? The event itself was lots of fun.  Fighting for the glory of the gnomes was fantastic.  And, despite my political differences with the High Tinker, it was an honor fighting along side him and the myriad of other characters they introduced (whose names I don’t remember at the moment).  However, the ending left me feeling…empty.  ‘Is that it?’ I thought.  I mean, at least in the Fall of Zalazane we actually get to kill Zalazane.  At the end of this little Operation, Thermaplug is still alive, and Gnomeregan is still full of radiation.  All we retook was the surface.  Really?  That’s it?  That’s poppycock.  Poppycock I say!  I sure as hell hope that something more happens when Cataclysm drops. Cause if not, what the hell was the point?

Also, I know I could probably find out by researching the beta stuff, but I’m really trying my damnedest to avoid spoiler info about Cataclysm.  It’s been a real challenge by the way.  I’ve pretty much given up on reading all my usual WoW blogs because I don’t want to risk it.  So don’t go posting spoiler info in the comments or I will be very disappointed in you.

“[Insert clever sign off phrase here]”


PS: Oh yeah, one more thing, I finally downed the Lich King the other night!  It took us 134 attempts.

Reducing your lag

July 5, 2010 § 1 Comment

One of the most frequently used search terms to find my blog is “reducing lag,” so I decided to do a post on it.  I’m not super computer savvy.  I mean, I know enough to get by and enough to fake my way through most things, but I do not purport to have any type of ‘expertise’.  As such, I am not going to get super technical or try to explain all the ins and outs of all the game settings that might reduce your lag.  All I am going to do is tell you what I have done that reduces my game lag.  All how, no why.

If, by the way, you want a detailed explanation of the video settings in World of Warcraft, someone named Natala has done a magnificent write up on the official European forums.  Link.

Ok so I’m sure every single person that has played World of Warcraft has at some point experienced game lag.  It can be immensely frustrating to zone into Dalaran and try and get across the city in spits and spurts.  I actually avoid going to Dalaran if I can, preferring to use Shattrath as my hub point.  But I have discovered a few things that you can do to help reduce lag.

The setting that helped reduce my lag in Dalaran more than absolutely anything else, by a wide margin was reducing the view distance to its lowest amount.  Don’t get me wrong, I love when I can increase the setting to its highest.  In fact, I think that changed my game play when I ‘discovered’ the setting.  I change this setting a lot.  Unless I’m in a raid/heroic or questing, I have the view distance all the way down.  Just be aware that if you increase the view distance it will reload the UI every time.

Also, turn the shadow quality all the way down.  Unless you have a fancy system with super graphics, this setting will just drain your resources.

Next, if you are in an area with a lot of ground clutter (plants specifically), you’ll want to reduce the Ground Clutter Density and the Environmental Detail.

The rest of the settings don’t really do a whole lot in your average area.  Well, I guess having player textures on a low setting is helpful in Dalaran.  But aside from that I haven’t really done much testing to see if anything is consistently a major drain.  Usually I just have everything (minus the aforementioned settings) at their medium setting, and that suites me just fine.

Oh by the way, make sure to keep projected textures on.  Complicated technobable aside, if you turn this off you’ll die in fires.  Because you won’t be ale to see them.

Moving on from the video settings the other way you can reduce your lag is by turning off addons.  Seriously.  Do you really need to be running quest helper, auctioneer, gatherer, and cartographer while you are raiding?  Probably not.  Think about what you will be doing during your particular game play session.  If all you are going to be doing is hanging out in the city, you can probably turn off your raiding addons.

Outside of the actual game you can help improve game performance by not running other applications in the background.  Every application you run uses up your machines resources.  If you are running a lot of other things, there will be less resources for World of Warcraft.  My machine is old and tired so I don’t run anything except WoW and Ventrilo.

Finally, I prefer to use a wired internet connection rather than a wireless connection.  Again, I’m not smart enough to explain the whys and wherefores, all I know is that the game runs slower on a wireless connection and is less laggy on a wired one.

So, hopefully that has helped you out a little bit.  If you are a smart computer person, please feel free to explain and expound.  But don’t be an ass about it.  I don’t need to be ‘proved wrong.’  I don’t need some smug ass telling me what a fool I am.  Sorry…I recently had an encounter with a smug and arrogant ass that decided it was more important to prove me wrong than actually contribute anything constructive to the conversation.

But by all means, if you are a computer person and can explain it better and correct anything I might have gotten wrong, and can do it without being a douche, I welcome the input.

For now though I just hope to be able to relieve some of the pain and agony of Dalalag.

“[Insert clever sign off phrase here]”


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