Old Blog Entries

Here's the moldy oldies:

Dec. 20, 2008

I AM NOW AN UNCLE!! Here are the vitals for everyone: Marisol had to have a c-section as Rylan had I guess gotten turned slightly and was being stubborn. :) But at 11:28 this morning, on December 20th, Rylan Alexander Manning was born. He weighs 6 pounds 14 ounces and is 19 inches long. He got the height from Justin obviously. Here is the first picture I have to share of my brother Justin, the new proud father of a baby boy:


Okay, so I found out yesterday that my sister-in-law is in labor which started yesterday morning at about 7:30 am. She is STILL in labor now at 10 am!! The baby is supposed to come any second now, but boy is my nephew taking his sweet time coming out!! I'm really excited to be an uncle! As soon as I get word that he is born I'll post it on here. Then, as soon as I get picture of him I'll post them on here right away. By the way, his name is Rylan Alexander Manning. I can't wait!!

Dec. 17, 2008

Man time is flying by fast! I can't believe Christmas is already a week from tomorrow! Anyway, everything is going GREAT for Legions. Since we've gotten Blitz and BugsPray in our office we've been knocking a lot of things out very quickly. We just launched the new map "The Core" last Tuesday and people are having a blast on it. There are a couple graphical glitches on it which I'm hoping to be able to iron out tomorrow to help out Blitz. My new map Mirage will be coming soon, either next Tuesday (our next big release) or two weeks from that. It is already available to the private testers and the feedback I've gotten so far has been mostly positive. We'll have a treat for everyone involving that map next Monday so keep your eyes peeled for that. Don't forget to login everyday and play Legions at www.instantaction.com!!
Next order of business is to tell everyone that I am officially the "Legions Community Manager." What exactly is that you might ask. Well, I don't really know either, but I know that I'm going to do my best to get all the important Legions information to all users as fast as possible. I'll also be responsible for getting everyone some "sneak peeks" and maybe some prizes involved with Legions. I can't wait to see everyone online. If you want to add me, my screen name is "Bob_Crane_Jr" See you online!!

Dec. 10, 2008

I know I haven't updated this in a while and I sincerely apologize but things have been extraordinarily busy over here, as in more busy than ever since I've been at this company! Crazy talk! Great things going on over at our www.instantaction.com website though. :D We eliminated ALL PAID GAME CONTENT!!! You can now play any of our games AND their map packs for absolutely FREE as long as you want!!! Check out the "broken clock" video that our community managers made. :)



Dec. 2, 2008

Wow, already December 2nd! We put up our Christmas tree, decorations, and lights on the house over the weekend. :D I also got all of my Christmas shopping done online. I looked at all of the Black Friday deals at the local stores and decided to check amazon just to see if they had comparable deals. They had everything discounted to the same as the Black Friday deals!! So I just basically bought all of my stuff from amazon.
Okay, now onto Legions. I've been working hard at re-vamping Blade Run to make it a little bit more playable for CTF games. Right now it's really hard to catch a capper because the terrain is basically flat. I have added a TON of variation in the terrain to allow players to get more speed in chasing. The changes, combined with the new physics make this one hell of an awesome map!! :) I'll get a screenshot of it added here later today hopefully. Moonshine is also getting a makeover…which is already playable on the test site if you have access. ;) If not, maybe I can get a screenshot of the changes to that on here as well. The precipitation on the maps looks fantastic and I can't wait for it to go public!!

The new middle of the Blade Run map:

Nov. 20, 2008

PDXLan tomorrow!! Watch out everyone if you're there because I'm bringing some kick ass stuff with me to get raffled off. I'll give you a hint, they have to do with Legions, and they are AWESOME! I can't wait to see some people playing Legions there!
I've been working lately on a project for Legions that should make a LOT of people very happy. It's something people have been asking for for a long time, and we're finally going to be able to do it. Look out for something surprising in the next big update. ;)
Let's see, I can't wait for the Beaver game on Saturday! I'm going to have to leave the lan for a few hours so I can watch it. :D I don't think there's really anything that can keep me from watching that bad boy. Just two more wins and we're off to the Rose Bowl for the first time since 1965. GO BEAVERS!!

Nov. 19 2008

Alright, it's Wednesday morning now and this has been a pretty good week so far. I've gotten plenty more Legions work done, but there is still PLENTY more to do.

One thing I have noticed over the last few days is how many unbelievably rude people are out there playing Legions! Pretty soon we will have a language filter in place to help with other people having to deal with foul comments, but right now it is getting kinda crazy. Like yesterday evening I got into a game and a player, whom I won't name but you know who you are, starting telling me how much I, my levels, and even GarageGames suck?! I couldn't believe it! The guy proceeded to tell me how much he is, and always will be of course, better than me. At what I don't exactly know, he didn't specify, though I can only assume he means at playing Legions. Which could very well be true because I don't have a whole lot of extra time to be playing games, and when I do I like to play games other than ones I'm not working on for 8 hours a day. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE Legions to death, but I like to change things up a bit in my free time. :) The only thing I can come up with as to why I keep meeting these people with absolutely no tact or common decency is that since our game is free every Joe Schmo is going to be playing it without fear of repercussions for anything they do. I bet that when we start charging for the game the amount of people acting like total a-holes will drop dramatically because the ones playing will have a vested interest in the game and put hard earned money into being able to play. My reason for this is that I have never experienced the sheer number of people being jerks and team-killing in any other multiplayer game I've played, and I have paid for them. Anyway, that is my morning rant, I'll talk to you guys later!!

Nov. 14, 2008

Whew, what a week it's been!! We finally got up our test website up for instantaction so we can test new changes basically on the fly and try them out against real people, the private testers. It was awesome to see my snow map actually having snow falling, Blade Run to have rain on it, and Moonshine to have floating whispy dandelion things. :D I love the precipitation!! I don't know why, but it feels like it adds just that much more atmosphere to a map.
Next weekend is the PDXLan!! I will be in Portland, OR attending PDXLan 12.5 and may actually be bringing some goodies! There are still some tickets left to the event and the first 250 that pay get a free copy of Far Cry 2!! So go to www.pdxlan.net and grab one of the last few tickets!!!

Nov. 12, 2008

The twelfth of the month and this is only my second post, man I need to be better about this on a consistent basis. I will try to do better I promise! But what I really wanted to talk about today was something I hate more than losing in Legions, team-killing. I do not like team-killers!! I was in a match this morning where for the first map a person was running around killing our team. While on his team I sat still right in front of him not shooting after he killed me once to make sure that it was not an accident and he blatantly, purposefully opened fire on me and killed me. Sad Face. :(
On a brighter note, things have been going well here in the office. Progress is being made at a steady pace on the new project along with the tutorial mission for Legions. :D Hopefully we'll have the tutorial mission done in the next few weeks.

Nov. 5, 2008

So now we finally know who our next president will be! I would be more excited usually, but I'm feeling under the weather right now. Well, I wouldn't even say under, it would be more like 20 ft. below ground buried alive with hand grenades exploding on the ground above me. I seriously haven't had a headache this bad in a long time. I am glad that Obama is going to be our next president. I think that there were too many issues out on the table that need to be dealt with immediately and we need a radical change from the current "regime," if you will. John McCain is too closely tied to everything Bush that I don't believe much would change. Certainly there are a few issues with which I do not agree with Obama, certainly not the least of which is the abortion issue. Overall though, I think he has an extremely level head about him and seems poised to turn this country around. :)
The game development is going pretty well right now. We are working on creating something entirely new for Legions that I'm REALLY stoked about. I'm actually working a little bit on it right now as I sit in bed nursing my head. Staring at this laptop screen certainly isn't helping anything, but what are you gonna do. :) I think I may start working on paper again so that's all for now!!

Oct. 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!! I really need to start keeping this updated more. So we are having a costume contest and pumpkin carving contest at work here today. A lot of people dressed up, even me in a Slipknot jumpsuit, so it should be a good contest. I carved a pumpkin last night in the shape of Michael Myers' mask and it turned out very well. I'll try to post a picture of it on here soon along with some company Halloween party pictures. I'm getting ready right now though to play against the IA community in a "Halloween Slack Attack" party. A lot of the developers here are going to be online between noon and 2 pm to take on the community in random games. I will probably be playing Legions exclusively as that's pretty much the only game I know well because I worked on it. I'll still probably get dominated because I just don't have enough time to play it enough to be great at it. :) Oh well, if it makes the community members happy to play against me then I'm happy. I like to give back to the users in any way I can.

Oct. 23, 2008

So today Eidos unleashed the demo of Tomb Raider: Underworld onto the world. Granted it is only the 360 flavor of the game, but it looks and plays amazing!! It was so great playing it this morning and seeing how much more polished it is than it was when I left Buzz Monkey just a short few months ago; and it looked FANTASTIC back then!! They really know what they're doing and achieved some breathtaking results. I highly recommend you jackin up your 360 and downloading this immediately!! You will not be disappointed! Just think about how great the 18th of next month will be when you can play the entire game!! :D

Oct. 23, 2008

This morning I found out some VERY exciting news! Two screenshots from a level that I designed for the Wii and PS2 versions of Tomb Raider: Underworld were unleashed onto the world. I am going to try to include them in this page, but for the time being you'll just have to take my word for it. Gamespot.com has one of them, then the other is shown on ign.com. :) I am sooo excited about that!!


This image is copyright of www.gamespot.com

Oct. 22, 2008

There is just no stopping this week, it just keeps chugging along. I wish it was just a little bit longer so I could get more work done. There never seems to be enough time in the day to get all you want done at work and have a balanced home life. Maybe I should do the whole sleep 15 minutes every four hours…
I don't really have anything new to report today other than I made a few more fixes to the newest desert map for Legions which has been named "Mirage" by the community. You can see the thread in the forums on our website. A lot of effort has gone into this map to make it great so I really hope it is well-received by the community. I played a match today against one of the artists here who had never played the map and we had a blast so that was really great. :D He noticed a couple minor cosmetic things that I changed and have already submitted. I don't know an exact time-frame for this map to be released to the public, but I DO know that it has already been released on our test site so it is technically ready to be unleashed. I would expect the public to be able to see it before Thanksgiving realistically, but we may be able to push it up to be released as soon as a couple weeks. I'll see how much I schmoozing I can do to get it out as soon as possible. :)

Oct. 19, 2008

First off, I just want to let everyone know that I will be attending the PDXLan 12.5 in Portland, Oregon on November 21-23. There are a few tickets left if you don't have one and you can head to www.pdxlan.net to sign up. I have registered under the usual handle, Bob_Crane_Jr, so you can see me on the seating chart. So if there are any Fallen Empire: Legions fans that want to talk to me, yell at me, or just sit and chat I would be happy to hear any and all feedback and hang out. I will let anyone that wants to buy me a drink. ;) I am trying to see if we can get Garage Games (and the instantaction website) to become one of the sponsors of the lan as I think it would be a great opportunity for us to get some free swag out to people. I'll let you know what i find out. I also want to see everyone there playing on www.instantaction.com!! I would love to jump into some pickup games of Legions, maybe some Blur, or Marble Blast, Rokkitball, or any of our other awesome games. Sign up at the link above if you haven't already, you don't know what you're missing!!

Anyway, part 2.

Wow, what a week. Yes I finally did get the breakthrough in my level design that I was working toward mentioned in my last entry. A simple yet remarkably effective Maya technique that I had totally forgotten about due to having to use other 3D programs over the last few months. It is amazing how much you adapt to what you are currently using and how much you lose about other programs when you start using something you're unfamiliar with, learn it, then go back to the one you've always used. In my case going from Torque for environments and another program for buildings I won't mention, to using Maya for everything; buildings, terrain, texturing, literally EVERYTHING. It's a good thing it's such a powerful program and can handle it all. I really love working with Maya.
I started out this weekend working on a new game project that I have been thinking about for a while and I'm finally fleshing it out and through the beauty and simplicity of Torque Game Builder, I should have a working prototype of my game by Monday, or Tuesday at the latest if I run into any snags. So far it's been pretty smooth sailing. I'm really jazzed about it and I putting together my own prototype by myself is something I'm really excited to show to prove that anyone can do it and how versatile yet user-friendly Torque Game Builder is. :)
I just got through shortening up this page so if you are wondering why it's much smaller I moved the older blog entries to my other page, "Old Blog Entries," which you can reach through the link on the left side of this page.

Oct. 16, 2008

This week has been a very productive one so far. I have been designing and now creating a new "level" for our new game and it is coming along quite nicely. It will be moving even faster starting tomorrow once I figure out why I am having an issue with one of the functions in Maya that is driving me nuts even now that I'm at home. I am sure that it will be an easy fix and my productivity will increase 5 fold at least and I'll be able to finish this baby up in no time. I can't say how much longer it will be until we make an announcement on this game unfortunately, and I think it will probably be a while though. :( Oh well, that's the way it goes in the industry.
On another good note, the guys who created the game "Blur" for our instantaction website are visiting our company this week. They are a bunch of great guys and they come from South Africa so you know they had a crazy long flight! It's great to have them here and it has been an honor to hang around them as they are absolute geniuses, as you can tell by the insanely good gameplay and the phenomenal graphics they were able to accomplish in a web-based game. :)

Oct. 13, 2008

I saw Pineapple Express over the weekend and it was HILARIOUS!!! If you are a Seth Rogan fan or just like comedy in general, I would highly recommend seeing this before it leaves the theaters. Right now it is at the "$1.50" theater as we like to call it so it is a bargain at any time.

My new game project is coming along great as well. We are moving into the heavier stages of prototyping right now, it is performing fantastic, and I can't wait until we can unveil this project to the public. In the meantime, I just have to say that instantaction players are in for a real treat soon. ;)

Oct. 3, 2008

I'm going to start this entry on a good note. The day before yesterday, with the advice of Munge, I added a bunch of cool lighting to the new desert map to enhance the glow effect of the buildings on it. I think it worked out great and the level looks better than ever. Then yesterday I made up a bunch of screenshots of the level and a quick fly-through video for the marketing team because I thought it would be cool for the public to be able to choose the name of the level, as I had not really thought of one yet. They loved the idea, and by the overwhelming response to the contest, it looks like you guys do too. I'm very happy about it and if you haven't been over there, go to this url: http://forum.beta.instantaction.com/smf/index.php/topic,5494.0.html, check out the screenshots and video, then put in your best idea for the name. You have until the end of next Friday, October 10th to get your entry in. We will then choose the top five from those and you will have another week to vote, putting the close date on the vote at October 17th. Good luck!!

Now onto more disturbing things. I rarely ever feel the need to talk about celebrities because talking about them usually is just another way to inflate their egos. Even if you talk about them negatively, most will just be happy you're talking about them. HOWEVER, I saw this video this morning with Puff Daddy that filled me with rage. It is him talking about Sarah Palin scaring him, but it's actually more just him acting like a moron and attempting, and I'm only assuming this, to get a Blair Witch Project feel to his video, which doesn't work. I'm going to put the url here, but if you are near small children or pets please don't watch it as their lives will instantly become in danger. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=70wGnx_lZio Now if you can come back from watching that and not want to burn every Puff Daddy cd ever made, which most people want to do anyway, then you are a better man than I. :)

Sept. 28, 2008

Wow, it's been ten days since I updated this biz. I've been trying to be better about it, but I guess when you're busy, you're busy. For the new game that I'm working on, Garage Games purchased a BUNCH of games for me to "research" to see what the did right and what they did wrong. It has been an absolute blast! I've spent the last week almost exclusively playing games on a 50" 1080p LCD HDTV at work all day. What a rough job!! Lol, just kidding, it's not all fun and games. Once you've been playing games and scrutinizing every aspect of them it actually does start feeling like work. Then you have to decide what you do and don't want to incorporate into your game, and then you have to figure out HOW you're going to implement the features in the game. It is NOT easy! I absolutely cannot complain though as I am basically living every guys dream making video games for a living.
The latest update of Legions went out and the response to it has been pretty positive overall. The new skybox, clouds, and fog are now implemented on Blade Run so it can now differentiate itself from the "Moonshine" map. :D I believe there were a few minor changes that made it into Frostbyte, such as lowering the snow behind the flags on one of the bases because if you hit it at the wrong angle when capping from behind you would hit a bump and fly right over the flag…..not good. I believe that the reduced skylight has also been put onto Frostbyte so people won't go snowblind when playing in full-screen mode; always good.
NEW MAP UPDATE: The new moon map, which can be seen on the instant action beta blog site, has undergone a slight change in look. One of the artists offered to fix up the skybox so the terrain looks like it fades into the distance, then the lead designer on the game put in some better fog and it looks great. I can't wait to be able to spend some more time working on that map, fine-tuning the terrain and adding the necessary bases. It is a blast to ski around on and I think the legions community will love it. Well that's all for now, thus ending one of the longest entries EVER for me!! Meet me online at www.instantaction.com!!!!

Sept. 18, 2008

Today is starting off pretty darn well I gotta admit. Going back and fixing up some more things on Blade Run which should take me at least three or four hours, and a couple very minor things on Frostbyte which I actually……just finished. I saw that someone posted a new cap run video montage on the forums of Frostbyte and mentioned that the map had been "enhanced" which made me feel really good. :) I'm glad some people are liking the changes that were made to the map. So far, there is only one person I know of that does not like the changes, and he's been very vocal about it lol. I understand where he is coming from, I just have to respectfully disagree. Once these last changes are made to Blade Run, hopefully people will be talking about it's "enhancements" and start playing that more. :D

Sept. 15, 2008

So today is Monday. I'm in extreme back pain after hurting it lifting a table last Friday which is pretty lame. The awesome thing about right now though, is that I'm writing this on a new laptop that my company gave me. It's a really nice machine and fun to play with as well.
I also got to start working on another project starting last Friday. This one is top secret as it hasn't been announced yet so the name stays with me. The one thing I will say about it though, is that it is going to be a BLAST!! I can pretty much guarantee that. The premise is money and so is the concept art. I am so stoked about working on it that I can't wait to tell you guys!!!!

Sept. 12, 2008

Another Friday and another busy week. I was the guest on the instantaction podcast yesterday which should be available by the time you read this. Our large bi-weekly update on instantaction is going on right now so there will be some new things featured on there in a little bit. Unfortunately, the precipitation effects will still not be available as we have not found a fix yet for the chaingun issue with them. That sucks. But hopefully the Frostbyte and Blade Run maps will see some of my redesigns in there. :) This is a quick one, I need to get back to work!

Sept. 5, 2008

Wow, it's finally Friday. I think this was the longest four-day week in work history! Munge played my new desert map for the first "real" time the day before yesterday and I got some good feedback for it. There were a few things that I knew needed to change, but a few things that I did not so that is always good. Also got some great suggestions to make it better, which is even better. For one, my new ammo stations were too large and I didn't even really realize it until he pointed it out, then I realized, "Damn, those things are too f-in' big!" Funny how you can look at something for literally a couple weeks and never realize there's anything wrong with it until someone tells you so. That is just one of the difficulties of being a designer/artist/producer/etc. I guess. Sometimes it's hard to take an objective look at your own work and realize some of your faults. I'm always trying though.
I believe that the final changes have been made to the Frostbyte map. After a well thought out thread started by one of the community members with pictures and detailed explanations, I realized a few things that were keeping a good map from becoming great. I actually made most of the suggestions that he made a reality already, but that is a good thing though if I can learn from my own mistakes and catch them before other people see them. Unfortunately due to our two-week lead time between build and actually seeing it on the public servers, all of my changes to that map have not been seen yet, and still won't until next Thursday. By that time though, hopefully the precipitation bug will be fixed and snowfall can be put back into the map!!! :D

Sept. 2, 2008

PAX is over and it was AWESOME!! There was an INSANE amount of people there, I heard in the neighborhood of 58,500 total attendees! Just walking around in there was sometimes a chore. I think it was a huge success for us as a company. We introduced our website to literally thousands of new people and most seemed genuinely excited about our website and the game offerings on there. I think the biggest draws were Legions, Ace of Aces, Metal Drift, and Lore. I had a blast playing Ace of Aces for pretty much the first time and it was really cool. Having the developer there on hand was really sweet as he helped me learn some controls that I otherwise would not have known about. We gave out over 600 t-shirts, 600 Torque cd's, and 2,000 action cards which gave people access to exclusive PAX 08 avatars for their instant action account. NICE!!! Hopefully over the next few days/weeks we shall be reaping the benefits of the show and see our install base of users grow dramatically. Then in the weeks after that the user base grow even more through word of mouth, new maps for Legions, closed betas of Metal Drift, Lore, and Ace of Aces. :) Things are really exciting here at Garage Games!!!

Aug 28, 2008

Today we leave for PAX. It's going to be a short day as we leave here in just a few hours so this is gonna be quick. If you haven't seen the cool swag we're giving out John, you can look on the beta blog of instantaction and see. Yes, I know we're giving away fanny packs (pax) but the shirts we're giving away are bad ass. I'll see if I can make sure you get one of each, or at least the new Legions one.

Aug 27, 2008

Leaving tomorrow for PAX!!!! YES!!! I'm stoked as hell to be going to that. We got really great placement for our booth, just caddy-corner to the Penny Arcade guys and next to Electronic Arts. I don't have to work in our booth on Friday so I think I'm gonna run around the place giving out my business card, playing as many games as I can, and attend a few seminars.
A new feature just got implemented into Legions yesterday which I'm very excited about. The end users will never even know it is there or even exists, but it will make the game cooler because of it. :)

Aug 26, 2008

So I went and saw Tropic Thunder this weekend and man that was hilarious!!! I laughed so hard a few times I was actually crying. Matthew Mccaugnahey (sp?) and Tom Cruise I think almost stole the show. Their scenes and banters back and forth were just priceless. I highly recommend that movie, 5 stars!
Lets see, so my work is still ever-continuing on the new desert map I am creating. Luckily one of the artists here made up a few new sand textures for me to use so it doesn't have the same terrain look as the last one. This map is going to be a fast one too. I don't know how it came to be, but it works and I can get up to 200 mph regularly and I'm not the greatest skier in the world, so a lot of the regulars are probably easily going to be seeing numbers approaching and maybe even exceeding 300 mph. A screenshot I took was released yesterday on the Legions forums so if you haven't seen it check it out at www.instantaction.com!!!

Aug 21, 2008

Yesterday and today have been absolutely amazing in regards to Legions. I have just found out a few tricks on interior spaces, resurrected some old (completely kick ass) interiors, and am basically going to do as much as I can to push the limits of what is possible in Legions, and browser-based gaming in general. I will definitely have a little bit to show off at PAX so watch out!! :D

Aug 20, 2008

Whew, been a few days. I went and saw Iron Man again a couple nights ago, man that movies awesome! I wish I would have seen that three times now instead of seeing "Wanted" in between. Met a lot of people on facebook that I haven't talked to in literally years. I swear everyone is on there nowadays.
As far as work is concerned, I am moving back into working on the map I started before making all the fixes to Blade Run and Frostbyte. Due to our two-week lead on all of our builds, none of the recent changes I've made to those two maps will be seen by the public until September 11th, as they will go into the QA build next Thursday and get hit hard for two weeks before we release them. Yesterday I was looking at some old maps that had been made, some prototypes, and saw some good use of putting buildings into terrain. Hopefully this will not be as hard of a process as I thought. (And trust me, I think its going to be hard).

Aug 15, 2008

Today I will be doing a lot more work on the two maps that are, ironically, being released to the public today. I found out a ton of feedback on them on Wednesday so I had literally no time to implement any of the changes into the build for today as I was out yesterday morning for personal matters, and the build had to be started at 1:30. So if any of you guys read this that gave me the feedback, don't worry, I took everything you had to say seriously and I am working hard trying to implement as many of your suggestions as I can and are feasible.

Aug 12, 2008 continued

So I figure now I might as well use this as a place where I can talk about the games I'm working on and give people a little window into my life. Right now I'm working on another new level for Fallen Empire: Legions. I've been working with one of the artists here on creating some new buildings and textures to give it some flavor. We've come up with some really good stuff and people will be in for a nice surprise when this map gets released in a couple months. There will be almost exclusively all-new content in the level and also a playing field that has not been tried before that is quite different than the current maps we have. I am working very hard on getting together something by the time the Penny Arcade Expo rolls around to show the attendees. So, if you're going to be in Seattle over Labor Day weekend and you don't have any plans, be sure to pick up a ticket to PAX and you might get a sneak peek at an upcoming level for Legions. :)

Aug 12, 2008

For the last couple nights my wife and I have been playing the Family Guy video game on the xbox. We originally bought it on the PS2, but due to a game-stopping bug we took it back hoping that it was just a scratched disc. We were wrong. About an hour into the game you get to a portion where Peter goes into a porta-potty and has to play a little simon-says type mini-game repeating farts from the next porta-potty over. Once you complete this, you go back out into the streets and some cops are supposed to come after you. If you die however, when you respawn the cops will never come and you will not be able to progress any further in the game. This has happened to us on both the PS2 and the Xbox games so I know that it is not a faulty disc issue or just a random thing. We are talking a GAME STOPPING BUG in the commercial release. There is absolutely no way that 2K Games could not have known about this either. After working in QA I know how rigorous the testing process is and what bugs you can and cannot let into a retail game. This game should never have been released with this bug. Oh there are others as well, one very serious one where Brian does not get his "disguise" back after the game tells you he will if he goes into the shadows. Once again, this occurs after dying and respawning. No wonder this game got panned by the critics. Not only does it have painfully repetitive gameplay, but there are literally game-stopping bugs in the commercial release. I'm just glad I didn't pay full retail price for the game and got it used. So let this be a warning to anyone that has not played the game and has a desire to. Rent it first, then buy it if you REALLY like doing the first few levels because you will be essentially playing them over and over again. I will give it props for having the full Family Guy humor in check as that does a lot to relieve the monotony. I love watching the cut scenes and actually wish they were longer. :)

Aug 9, 2008

There are days when you want to work, and days you want to sleep. Today is a sleep day. And normally I would be sleeping, but there are construction people here and I told our secretary that I would come in at 10 to collect the loaner "fob" from him and put it on her desk. So now is a waiting game. Since Melanie is at work I could either be here at work or at home playing Call of Duty 4. I'd rather be at home.

Aug 7, 2008

Last night I went and played Laser Tag over at Putters on 99 and it was an absolute blast!! It was also an insane workout! I had no idea it would take that much out of you. It's only ten bucks for twenty minutes; four five minute rounds. At the end they also give you a printout of how you did in every round. In the first game I was dead last because all I did was go after people, which nets you not too many points. In the fourth game I was first place because by that time I realized just going balls to the wall toward the opponents goal and shooting it was the way to go. My team won all four games as well, by a minimum margin of 38,000 points. The most we won a round by was over 73,000. I think we had the better team. :) It also helped that 7 out of the nine players on our team were my friends lol. Anyway, if you haven't ever played laser tag I highly recommend it, awesome stuff.
I ranked up again in Call of Duty 4 last night as well. So what if I'm only rank 5, hehehe. I wish I had more time to play it, but with work and Melanie, the game time just dwindles down. That game's multiplayer is just fantastic. I've really only played one map so far that I would skip, and I may have mentioned it before, but its just an abandoned air field with a bunch of satellite things in the middle and hangars around the edges. If you have more than about four people on it, it just becomes extremely claustrophobic and your average life span is only about 7 seconds. Not my idea of fun.

Aug 5, 2008

PAYDAY!! Okay, so now that I've got that out of the way…I watched "Live Free or Die Hard" last night for the first time. That was actually a really fun flick. It had some of the most ridiculously over the top action sequences where you had to suspend your disbelief more than any other movie EVER MADE. (Just watch it, I promise you that's true) However!! It had a lot of really good dialog and Bruce Willis' was just as funny as ever. A really good end to the series, hopefully. We don't need to see him do that again and ruin the series ala Indiana Jones. Well thats it for me, I'm outta here!

Aug 4, 2008

So over the weekend I beat Metal Gear Solid 4. I actually beat it. It is very rare for me to stick with a game long enough to beat it, and usually they are FPS'. But this one just kind of had me hooked. So now that I've beat it I can give it a final verdict.
I would have to give it a 8.8 out of ten. It is a VERY good game. The presentation was absolutely phenomenal. I have not seen graphics that good yet on the PS3 and it was nice to see that someone figured out how to get that out of it. It had a pretty good story but unfortunately it just got so convoluted at the end that I had almost no idea what the hell the characters were talking about. They were throwing out so many acronyms they sounded like a cable network. And I won't even get into the last cinematic. I didn't have a clue what the hell they were talking about. Now granted maybe if I would have played the other games I would have understood more, but still. A game should be able to be played on its own merit and not have to know all the backstory to enjoy it. I also wish that Snake would have moved just a little bit faster. I thought the same thing in the previous Tomb Raider games and they introduced a sprint button in the new one and it felt fantastic to play! It just felt better. Hopefully in Metal Gear Solid 5, when they make it, there will be a sprint option. I have not had a chance to play Metal Gear Online yet, but I did play the beta and had an absolute blast. So actually I guess I will take back my review score. I will bump it up to a 9.2 because they included the online portion.

Aug 1, 2008

Wow, August already. I can't believe it! So I just downloaded the 30 day trial of SOFTIMAGE XSI. Our company has a full version of it, but I hear the registration process was a nightmare, so right now I'm just going to stick with the trial for a bit. I saw the box sitting there on the bookshelf behind my desk and no one here uses it, so I figured since I've been learning to use Hammer, why not another program? Yes I know it's crazy, but I hear this program is pretty bad ass. And the head producer said that if I really liked it we might pursue it further because I think we were at one point making a Torque plug-in for it but that stalled. So I personally might be able to convince our company to buy more copies. Are you listening SOFTIMAGE?? :D Now away from the shameless plug and attempt at a bribe.
The desert map for Legions WAS released yesterday!!! I should have updated this page yesterday to reflect that, especially since I learned about it less than an hour after writing my update. Oh well. It is so awesome seeing people running around the level and most people seem to really enjoy it. Their minds are really going to be blown when the next two maps are released on the 14th. :)
If anyone reads this, please click on the links to the videos of my Legions levels and leave really jazzed up comments. :P Seriously though, that would be awesome.

July 31, 2008
I bought a plant yesterday and brought it into work today. It's really cool looking, kind of like a miniature palm tree. And actually it's two of them in the same pot. It will be nice having one next to me to give me purified air, lol. I just don't want my area to feel like "work" or a cubicle.
So tomorrow it looks like the desert map for Legions is finally going to see the light of day on instant action!! (www.instantaction.com) It was originally planned to be released today, but the deadline was pushed back until tomorrow. I know a LOT of people are going to be logging onto the website today frequently hoping to see it released, but will be disappointed. At least they only have another day. It turns out that the other two levels that I made, even though done, will probably not be released to the public until at least two more weeks. :( It's okay though, its probably best that we stagger the releases of the new levels for the game so people will give each one a hard run through and we can get all the bugs out individually. Plus, this will also force people to play each one separately when new, rather than giving people three choices right off the bat and potentially having people make favorites now and risk some not getting a fair chance at play. :) I put a link to the new video of my grass map at the top of the page.

July 29, 2008
I found out something interesting yesterday, so my webpage comes up in yahoo search results if you search for the phrase "Bob Crane Jr." Not only that, but its like five out of the first ten hits in the search. So I am going to officially take my email address off this page. I knew that my page did not come up in google search results, so I figured why would it show up in any of the other ones? I was wrong.
I watched "The King of Kong" documentary yesterday and I have to say that it was a pretty good watch. I have to say that Billy Mitchell is a total ass. I don't think I've ever even seen a more self-absorbed person in my entire life, let alone met one. He has the biggest ego of anyone I've ever known. And what has he done, HE GOT A HIGH SCORE ON DONKEY KONG. BIG DEAL. Oh, and he also sells hot sauce…wtf? Which is, by the way, called "Rickey's." And his name is Billy. This guy is five beers short of a six-pack. He probably rode the short bus to school. I don't know why the hell it has a 97% on rotten tomatoes when I could probably sit here and think of fifty of my favorite movies of all time and they wouldn't have a score that high. (I looked up Saving Private Ryan and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and they both have 94% each. Close, but still that is ridiculous).
My first work done here at Garage Games has officially been shown to the public in the form of a youtube video. It is listed above. Now I can't take all the credit for this level as it was started by the previous level designer who left right before I got here, but I did put a lot of effort into finishing it. The link is above.

Yay for birthdays. :)

July 28, 2008
Tomorrow is officially my birthday! We celebrated it over this past weekend, which was really awesome because it was like having three days worth of birthday. :) Tomorrow I think we are also having a bunch of friends over to celebrate the actual day itself. I did get some pretty kick ass presents. I got planet earth on blu-ray, a bunch of money, a dilbert book, the gamers guinness book of world records, John fixed my muffler rattling problem (very cool), and I got a gift certificate to CD/Game Exchange which I used to get the new Die Hard movie on blu-ray and four cd's. :) SWEET!
I played quite a bit of Metal Gear Solid 4 over the weekend as well. After having put in so many hours I think I am finally realizing why everyone is saying its such a great game. I've watched probably 37 straight days worth of cinematics so far, but the story is actually quite good. And knowing that Snake is going to die at the end actually makes me kind of sad. It's like for some people when the last Harry Potter book was released. He didn't die of course, but they knew that there were not going to be anymore books. So in that sense, it is kind of heart-wrenching the closer and closer I get to the end. It is a very solid game. I am extremely impressed with the in-game cinematics, though I have always been a sucker for them. It's like watching a real epic movie with bits and pieces of gameplay intertwined. I guess I'm having a blast with this game. So I change my original "review" if you will of the game. I will say that it is a solid 9, maybe a 9.5 at this point. I haven't beat it so I won't give a definitive number yet, but it is looking very promising. I've learned a lot about the series through the cinematics and it makes me happy.
I've also been playing some Call of Duty 4 online recently. It's hard to get a match where I don't lag intermittently, but when it runs smooth its pretty fun. I'm not that great yet, but then again, my player is only at rank 4 I think and I'm always fighting people level 20 and above. Most people are at least level 40 though. So I can't feel too bad about getting dominated. It's a sweet game though!
The marketing team is working on putting some screenshots and videos of my new levels for Legions up onto the internet. I think the videos are going to youtube and screenshots onto the instantaction website. So anyone who reads this, check them out!!

July 25, 2008
So today is Friday! I just finished a new level for Legions which makes me extremely happy. It just needs to go through QA to fix any bugs that are present. This will make the community happy to know. Just a little more time and you'll have a few new maps I promise!! I also got the privilege of taking screenshots and videos of other levels that I've created. Those will be released to the public sometime next week I believe.
I'm celebrating my birthday with friends tonight, going bowling and then having a party afterward. I'm REEEEAAAAALLLLYYYY stoked!! Anyway, thanks for reading this John!

July 22, 2008
Back at work today after feeling like absolute crap yesterday. I don't know what happened, but just major headache and overall feeling of ugliness. I took some airborne and IB so I don't feel so bad today.
I did get to go see the Dark Knight last Thursday night, and all I can say is WOW. How did they make such a killer movie? It was a stroke of genius. It is literally the only movie I have ever watched and thought, "That guy should get the Oscar for best actor," talking of course about Heath Ledger as the Joker. He was so good it was scary. Its a shame he isn't here to see all the great reaction to his performance. I also saw Wall-E this weekend. That was very good as well.
So back to Metal Gear Solid 4. I played that for a while on Saturday night and am now in a part of the game - don't read on if you haven't played it yet - where I am playing as Snake dressed up in a trench coat, walking around in a foggy part of town that reminds me of Chicago for some reason. Now am I playing a 1940's Alone in the Dark or Metal Gear? I am literally sneaking around following people like a private detective. I even "found" who I was supposed to be looking for and didn't have a clue what I was supposed to do, he got pissed and started shooting at me immediately, so I killed him. Evidently I was NOT supposed to do that as Octacon got on the codec and yelled at me. Well what the hell was I suppose to do?! He was shooting at me! No one ever told me what I was actually supposed to do once I found him so now I'm going to have to go over to gamefaqs just to figure out what the *$#% I'm supposed to do. NOT the mark of the so-called "Game of the Year." >:(

July 17, 2008
Only ten days until my birthday!! I decided to go down to the reunion tomorrow night. We are going to see the midnight showing of Batman tonight (which I'm unbelievably stoked about!!!) so I won't be running on much juice tomorrow. I'm going to see if I can get an appointment to get a tattoo in Corvallis on my way home this weekend. I hope I can!!
I want to get some Call of Duty 4 played tonight as well, so its going to be a busy day!!

July 16, 2008
Wow, my ten year high school reunion is this weekend. I wasn't sure that I was going to go since I found out that my best friend wasn't going to be there, but now I think that I'm going to go. It is a three day thing starting Friday night, but I'll probably only go down there for Saturday. I can't believe how fast these last ten years have gone by!!
My work is coming along now pretty well. I am working on creating a prototype for a game that I've been wanting to make for a long time now, and now that I work at a company which can publish its own games I actually have a shot at getting it made. I'm trying to teach myself how to program in Torque so I can create the entire prototype by myself, but time is so hard to come by these days that it might be a while.
The other project is going pretty well still. I hit a mental roadblock that I just couldn't get past for about an entire day on Monday, but I seem to be past that as yesterday I seemed to be making some good progress.
BTW, everyone needs to watch the first trailer for Tomb Raider: Underworld as it debuts tonight from E3!!!

July 11, 2008
So here we go again! The game I'm working on right now is going better than I ever could have expected. The powers that be are impressed, the lead actually said he, and I quote, "loved" the "new" aspects of the last level I created. How awesome is that!!! I'm really excited now. This job has so much less stress than at Buzz Monkey it's not even funny. I think that my creativity is really blossoming into its full potential which, I believe, was being stifled at Buzz due not only to the stress of working on a AAA title like Tomb Raider, but the fact that we were being contracted by Crystal Dynamics so we actually had to cater to what they wanted. Now I'm able to let my mind run free with no restraints and it feels great!
I think I've mentioned that I am working on all things Instant Action but if not, now I am. If anyone actually reads this, please go to www.instantaction.com and check it out. We have a lot of fun games and add content on a weekly basis. It's still in its beta stage so there are a few bugs but they are very few and far in between. (Did I say that correctly?) Anyway, I hope to see people on there. Our consumer base keeps getting larger and its great to see. If you're ever on there, my instant action name is, as you probably already guessed, Bob_Crane_Jr so add me as a friend and I'll see you there!!

July 7, 2008
I hope everyone had a great fourth of July weekend and blew at least one appendage off. I spent it at my in-laws and we had a pretty sweet barbecue with hot dogs, hamburgers, and even smores! Then we set off a ton of fireworks out front, so all in all it was a great fourth.
I also went to see Mike over the weekend up in Corvallis and hung out for a while. He showed me quite a few videos; a few disturbing to say the least, but all funny. Played some CS: Source and WoW. It was fun.
I have played some more Metal Gear since my last update and I have to say that my verdict on the game remains unchanged. It is surprising how many times there is severe slowdown in the game cinematics. When there is more than ONE person on screen, it drops quite noticeably. It has actually gotten to the point where it is a significant distraction. I wonder if any of the million glowing reviews tell you that! Also, I got done with the first "act" of the game and was then presented with yet another install screen!!! I already spent eight minutes installing the game when I first got it, now I had to spend another three installing the second act?! This is ridiculous!! If I wanted to be sitting installing games I would have bought something for the PC. They claim that this "improves the frame rate and load times." There are still load screens and there is slowdown in the game so this is total bs. I would hate to see what happened if I just streamed the game off the disc, it would probably be un-playable. Thats pretty sad for a game that was in development for like three years or more. Okay, I need to get back to work.

July 2, 2008
Alright, its finally time for a proper update. I showed up to work early today so I'll throw down a little bit. One thing that I was thinking about the other day is, "why the hell did they make the first 'band-centric' Guitar Hero game with Aerosmith?" I mean, yes I know they're popular, and yes I know they're very well known. BUT, how many people after the first couple guitar hero games sat there thinking, "man I really hope they put some Aerosmith in the next one!!" I can bet next to no one thought that. Most people were thinking, AC/DC, Metallica, Megadeth, Staind, Slipknot, Linkin Park, or someone along those lines. No one gives two shits about Joe Perry. If you don't know who that is, then that is exactly my point. The core demographic of that game wants the forementioned bands I can guarantee, much more than Aerosmith. I bet Aerosmith was really cheap to get and when they found that out they figured what the hell. I mean come on, would you rather play "Love in an elevator" or "Enter Sandman?" "Cryin'" or "Back in Black?" "I don't wanna miss a thing" or "Symphony of Destruction?" I rest my case. The only problem is that since the guitar hero series is so insanely popular and people want to play any and all new songs they can get their hands on, this thing will still sell like hot cakes. I just hope we don't get "Guitar Hero: Alabama" next. ;)
On a more popular game note, I have been playing Metal Gear Solid 4 lately. I haven't played the last couple days because I've been very busy, and I actually wished I playing it, so that is a good sign. However, from what I have played and seen so far I absolutely do not think it is as great of a game as everyone makes it out to be. Don' get me wrong though, I really like the game. I think the graphics are amazing, the gameplay is solid (although practically unchanged from the previous iterations) and it keeps your interest, but seriously people. It's not THAT great. People are calling it a "milestone in gaming history." No. It's not. It's a competent game that a lot of people will enjoy. It is not breaking any new ground. I will reserve proper judgment until I have beaten the game so before you get your Johnny Boxer's all in a bunch, just remember that. And if you are thinking, "well if you can make a better game then do it"…….I will. :)
And since you're the only one that reads this john, my e-mail is NOT HERE.

Response from John
Well Derek, I don't know any other place I should put this stuff so it'll appear here till I'm told otherwise. I realize it's not the most appropriate area but whatever. I'd like your new email, I tried sending you something and it got bounced back saying the addy doesn't exist. Anyhow, I'm off to the bed so I'm out.

July 1, 2008
Well John, I figured I might as well give you something new to read. I have my desk all set up now as when I got back from vacation there was someone in my spot and my computer was sitting on the floor. :) Everything is squared away and I am hard at work now working on all projects Garage Games. I don't know how much I am able to say what I'm working on so I don't want to post it right now. It's a blast though, I really like the people I'm around and the games are awesome, so that makes it easy to come to work. ;) I'm off to the iin-laws for dinner so I'm out.

June 11, 2008
I am writing this right now on my last day here at Buzz and they've already taken my keys and I had my exit interview. Wow, what a trip this has been, and a GREAT one at that. I wish all the best for everyone here in the future and maybe I'll work with some again, so goodbye Buzz!!!

June 10, 2008
Second to last day here! I hope its a shorter work day than yesterday, whew! 15 hour days really take it out of ya. Well, not really anything to say. I can't wait to play some more guitar hero (2 or 3). There are still some achievements that I MUST HAVE!!

June 09, 2008
Wow, just two more days (after today) left at Buzz Monkey. What a trip. And speaking of trips, only five more days until we leave for Greece!!! I'm starting to get pretty excited about it. I got a couple books yesterday to read along the plane rides and ferries. I hope I can finish them on the trip, that would be a huge accomplishment for me considering I haven't actually "read" a book since I was in school. Yikes! And John, when you read this feel free to throw in a comment if you can edit the page.

June 06, 2008
The trip to Greece is coming up soon! We leave a week from tomorrow. Melanie and I listened to a greek language cd last night to try and learn a little bit of the language so we can at least be polite and say hi or hows it going and goodbye. Some things are extremely easy, and others just ridiculously hard!

June 05, 2008
So yesterday I gave Buzz Monkey my notice of quitting. Next Wednesday will be my last day. I will be moving over to GarageGames (not a far move) next Thursday to work for two days before my trip to Greece!! I am really excited about the opportunity to work there on PC games and be "basically" in on the ground floor on the instantaction.com website since it still hasn't officially launched. I'll be making levels over there and just working my ass off. I think the trip to Greece will provide so much creative inspiration that its not even funny. It will be extremely hard to leave such a great group of people here at Buzz, which I never wanted to leave, but circumstances come up which force career decisions that, unfortunately, have to be made. I will miss it here, but look forward to a very bright future at GarageGames!!

June 01, 2008
Now that I found out that someone actually reads this, I feel bad about not updating this thing more frequently. Thanks John!! :P Anyway, not much going on, just watching some clutch video while I'm waiting to build something. Hah, it works!
Grand Theft Auto IV though, wow, what can you say? That thing grabs a hold of you and just doesn't let go. I just discovered the beauty of the attack chopper this weekend. Not legitimately of course, who wants to do that? I never realized as well how many buildings have heli-pads on top of them. I mean how many choppers really need to be landing there? I wonder if its really like that in NY…. Keep on keepin on peeps!!

May 23, 2008
So this may just be my little test to see if anyone I know actually reads this. I had a meeting yesterday and a meeting today with people. If anyone I know reads this, they may already know what I am talking about and what this means, but if you are reading this, know me, and have no idea what the hell I'm talking about, feel free to hit me up. ;)

May 22, 2008
Holy crap, only one entry in April and we're already to the 22nd without an update?! Someone must be getting lazy…Anyway, I went to see the newest Indiana Jones movie last night. I am not going to say it was great, but I'm not going to say it was not bad either. Like one of my friends said, if you love the original trilogy, don't watch this movie (or do and don't dare compare it to the originals).
I also just have to say that I LOVE GRAND THEFT AUTO FOUR!!!! I would give it a score of 37 on a scale of one to ten! :)

April 7, 2008
I guess its about time I make a new entry huh? Well its been one hell of a ride these last couple weeks. Work has been crazy! I also got a few more movies from the Hollywood video here for a buck each. I also got a few games, The Godfather limited edition, return to castle wolfenstein, state of emergency, and forza motorsport, all for the xbox for a total of $9.50!! What a deal! Here is a link to my profile on linkedin, and I hope it shows up correctly!!


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March 25, 2008
The Hollywood Video here in downtown has all of their VHS tapes on sale for 99 cents!! I went there on Sunday and picked up three hammer horror movies, "The Horror of Frankenstein," The Curse of the Werewolf," and "The Mummy Shroud." I have never seen any of the Hammer Horror flicks so I'm excited to see how they fare against modern horror movies. I was turned onto them by my father-in-law who showed me a book about the history of the rise and fall of the studio. It was a very interesting read!

March 19th, 2008
My sister had surgery to remove a cyst on her tailbone yesterday and here's for a quick recovery, cheers!

March 17th, 2008
Saw "I Am Legend" this weekend and did not think that it was nearly as bad as everyone made it out to be. You could really feel the emotion and trauma that Will Smith was going through, especially with his dog. You really connected with him, I thought anyway.
This morning I had two cavities filled so my teeth/jaw are in pain right now, but hopefully that will pass soon. I really needed a jaw massage earlier, I think that would have been nice. Maybe some acupuncture…

March 12th, 2008
So its been five straight nights now without any REM sleep. Now a lot of people might think that you would start to get really crazy, wacky ideas running through your head, but unfortunately it has the opposite effect and completely inhibits your creative mind. This is a bad spot to be in. Finally got some sleep medicine so I will hopefully be able to get a good night's rest and at least start thinking clearly and more creatively tomorrow. :)

February 28, 2008
Watched the movie 3:10 to Yuma last night and it wasn't too bad! I was expecting a decent movie and that was exactly what I got, decent. It was also nice to see a western movie that wasn't 6 and a half hours long and actually had some decent dialogue. Anyway, might be worth checkin out!

February 27, 2008
If you want to see something that I think is pretty hilarious look up "zero punctuation drakes fortune" in google and find the video review of Uncharted Drake's Fortune by zero punctuation. It's awesome because they aren't afraid to tell it like it is and actually admit that the game completely copies every Tomb Raider game EVER. :)

February 25, 2008
I saw Atonement yesterday and was pleasantly surprised. I thought it was going to be a total chick flick, but it was not at all. There was quite a bit of gruesome war stuff which was pretty sweet. The story was really good and actually pretty gripping, so I was pretty happy about that. :) I thought ANY of the other nominees for Best Picture this year were better than "No Country For Old Men." I did not see There Will Be Blood so I cannot comment on that but it looked boring as hell, so I figure it didn't deserve it anyway. I think Juno should have won it, because it was so original and it was hilarious, dealt with real issues, and you really got attached to the characters. Great movie. Go see it!!

February 22, 2008
So I still have a LOT to learn about the design process. I had no idea it was such a complicated web of all the departments and how delicately they have to communicate and interact with one another. Like my old boss said, "It's a miracle a video game EVER gets done." Every day I realize how more and more true that really is. It is one hard job….but totally worth it. :)

February 11, 2008
Today is a turning point in our relationship with our apartment complex. My neighbor who so politely decided to crank up some music at 8 in the morning on Saturday to wake us up decided that he did not want to ever turn anything down. When I asked him later in the day if he wouldn't mind playing his music a little quieter if it is that early, he so kindly responded telling me to buy earplugs or move out, that he was going to call the police because what I was doing was "harassment" and then called me an ass hole and slammed the door. This is not very cool.
About twenty minutes ago, we went to the management and explained the situation. We found out that evidently HE called on Saturday (I'm assuming to of course twist the story and make me sound like the bad guy) which is absolutely hilarious. So the manager said that that was completely unacceptable and he was going to think about the situation and call me back TODAY, with emphasis. He is literally insane and unstable. Wish us luck!! Have a great day!!!!

February 5, 2008
So this one is just going out to my sister. Hang in there kiddo. No matter what is going on in your life or the lives of others around you, just know that I love you and I will always be there for you if you need me.

Part 2: Blu-Ray movies are AMAZING!! I just bought the movie "War" last night with Jason Statham and Jet Li and I cannot WAIT to watch it!! It is going to be intense!!

February 4, 2008
Wow, I waited a while before I updated this! So my wife and I just had our 7 year anniversary of our first date on the first. SEVEN YEARS we've been together! Crazy!! So we went to Dairy Queen for dinner, just like we did on our first date. We also saw a play the next day which was pretty sweet, it had my wife's sister in it. We saw a play on our first date as well, weird.
Anyway, so I just watched the Super Bowl yesterday and I can sum up the game with one word, "shocking." I have never been so surprised, pleasantly even, by a football game in a long time. I KNEW that the Patriots were going to win that game. When they scored with only a couple minutes left, I knew it was all over. I would have put money on it. There's no way Eli could march his team downfield, he doesn't have the cahones or the experience. I thought he would choke. But they didn't and the rest is history.
I also saw the movie "The Invasion," which is a remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Two words: Don't Bother.
January 28, 2008
Unbelievable, just absolutely unbelievable. Waking up on Sunday morning to find FOUR inches of snow on the ground here in Eugene. Normally, I wouldn't trust any meteorologist with even watering my cactus, but they actually got something right! For once, they said it was going to snow and it actually did! How they did that, I'll never know. I guess by pure luck you'll get something right eventually. :) So yesterday was awesome! We built one of the tallest snowmen ever resurrected, coming in at around 9 maybe 9 and a half feet tall. It was intense! Now that it has warmed up a few degrees, I hope his base hasn't weakened to the point of collapsing. Had a few work ideas over the weekend, but none came to fruition. Oh well, I guess not every idea is gold. :)

January 25, 2008
TGIF'n A! It's Friday! It has been a long, grueling week, and I am ready for the weekend. I really really want to get my stuff done though, got a long ways to go so hopefully today will go by fairly slow just for that sake. Well, lets get some work done!!

January 21, 2008
I finally watched "The Fugitive" over the weekend. I know I'm probably one of the last people that had NOT seen that movie, and if you knew me you would know that not seeing that movie would most likely come as a shock. That movie kicked ass!!! The acting was very well done, Tommy Lee Jones played just the kind of turd goblin that he does best, the story didn't get too sappy at the end, the bad dude ended up going to jail instead of getting killed so he could get "punished" rather than just dying, etc. etc. All in all, a fantastic movie. One thing that did make me laugh though is when they show the long shot of "Harrison Ford" jumping out of the dam, you can see the dummy heading clearly for the concrete wall. It was falling straight down and as you know, dam walls are not. He would have splattered all over it, but anyway, it was good fun.

January 18, 2008
You know, ebay is an awesome place if you are a sports card collector. I have been selling cards on there for the last few weeks and actually been making some decent money! Even if an auction only goes for 99 cents, if you charge $2.50 for shipping (which is how you make your money), after all fees and mailing the card you've pocketed about $2.00 That may not seem like much, but lets say you put up 50 cards on there. Even if they only went for 99 cents each, which I always start the auctions at, you would make a cool $100!! Now that seems worth my time. :) The end user gets a bargain cause they only "think" they're paying 99 cents for a card, which in reality they are, and you're making a couple bucks off the shipping! Not a bad deal if you ask me.

January 17, 2008
We'll do a movie quote today, see if anyone recalls it without cheating. "Gentlemen, let's broaden our minds."

January 16, 2008
Writing this in the morning of what could a VERY busy day. You know what I was thinking about just a few minutes ago? The origination of the color photo printing process. Actually I wasn't, I'm not usually that deep nor would I give a crap. Hopefully though, everything today will go well. :)

January 15, 2008
Whew, today is one hell of a day! Nothing like getting work done and having a blast doing it!! :) I really feel my progress is coming along and the idea flow is starting to move from a small stream into a small river. I'm telling you right now that meditation is a great thing. If you ever have a chance, go to the book store or the library and pick up a book about it. I used to think that it wouldn't do anything and it was a waste of time, but it really works. You can calm down your body, release stress, and let your creative mind blossom. Good luck!

January 14, 2008
What a day. That is really all I can say. Lots of stuff going on!

January 11, 2008

I just need to say that working in the video game industry really is a dream come true. Sure there are times of stress same as any other job, and believe me this IS a job. It isn't just sitting around playing games all day. I love it when people think that is what we do, and the majority of people think that as well, just troll around in some video game forums. If anything ever goes wrong in a game, it's because we are lazy or don't care. If they only knew how difficult even the smallest of tasks is. Anyway, back to my original statement. The video game industry is the most exciting place to be in and every single day you do something different; you see something new; you hear great news or reviews about a game you've helped make; it is a blast. I cannot stress enough how enjoyable and fulfilling this job is, but keep in mind, you have to truly be into video games in order to get the most out of it and be the most productive. God speed! :)

January 10, 2008

So I guess it's time for a blog entry. Not a heck of a lot to say, now I know why I never had one of these before. I was watching tv last night and came to the realization that I hate commercials. I don't mean that I find them annoying or that some of them are tolerable. I mean that my life would literally be a more pleasant existence without them. Here's what I'm talking about:
Why the hell can local companies never come up with a decent commercial. Take for example the "Mr. Appliance" commercials here. These are the most mind-numbing, vomit-inducing, turd-revolving batch of wretched garbage commercials ever created. This guy thinks that it is funny to say the word "WHAW" in various intonations at the end of every commercial no matter how out of place it is, or ignorant it is in the first place. I would love to take a refrigerator and smash his head in the door. I think that would make a more pleasant "WHAW" sound. :)

January 08, 2008

Alright people, so here's the deal. You have entered a very dangerous area which contains the morose, existential, and occasionally kooky mind of Mr. Bob Crane Jr. From now on you will get a very small glimpse, because taken in anything more than small doses can be lethal, into my madness. Prepare to enter a lucid nightmare.

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