Some things I've learned....

(1) An Engineer can do with 10 cent what a fool can do with a Euro.

(2) "Puff" - unimportant; insignificant; unworthy of study by engineering students; waste of time

(3) It's better to keep your mouth shut and let people think you're stupid than to open it and prove them right!

(4) Blockwork people and concrete people can never work on the same site... Apparently they don't like each other....

(5) It's official; I'm fantastic!

Monday 31 December 2007

2007 In Review

The time now here in Ireland is 19:41, on the 31st of December 2007. I was just bored and since I plan to have a quiet night in I kinda just got the idea to do up a little blog (which is also unprepared so it's gonna be a little crappy too!).

I thought about the year and then realised...there wasn't exactly much I could remember!! Naturally I can recall things which I had to deal with on a personal level but as far as public or worldwide stuff goes I got a bit stuck.

So instead, I figured I'd do a Top Five Best & Worst Moments of 2007. Really now, the lists are fairly mixed up between personal stuff and other stuff, so it looks a little messy and what not but who gives a fuck really, you're probably already bored having had to read through these three paragraphs of crap!

Top Five Worst Moments of 2007

5. Stan is not the Man
I, and so many other Irish fans this year suffered greatly on the sporting front. A team the country was once proud of, now sits in shame...

4. Bertie's Money
It has drawn the attention of everyone Ireland, the man leading our country doesn't know where his money is coming from. Catherine will be pleased to see that I'm having a go at Bertie here, but the implications should the tribunals investigation show that Bertie was in the wrong will have huge effects on Fianna Fail, this government, and Irish politicians in general.

3. Benazir Bhutto Assassination
A recent one yes, but given the severity of the event and the current political situation in Pakistan, the assassination of Benazir means there's going to be a rocky 2008 for Pakistan.

2. Madeleine McCann
Probably the biggest story of the entire year. Yes you might say it's terrible that its not number 1 but those who frequent my blog know that I far from support the McCann family. Nevertheless it was (and still is) a terrible tragedy and has affected more people and grasped the world more so than anything else this year.

1. The Rugby World Cup
Nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing can express my disappointment regarding this tournament. We saw Ireland crash out in unfashionable style and England make it all the way to the bleedin' final!!

Top Five Best Moments of 2007

5. This Is Living!
The Playstation 3 made it to Europe this year, and although it had a rocky start it has now fully established itself in the market. I am completely satisfied with the package, and whats more is that the PS3 has now pretty much launced the advent of Blu-Ray technology!

4. Five More Years!
I haven't really written anything political recently, partly because I have neither the time nor the patience to research political matters in depth. But I DID cover this years General Election and I'm happy with the end result. If anything I'm more impressed with the performance of the Greens, we've seen tonnes of new anti-carbon emission and more "Green" policies coming in. Also, the current Government has now paved the way for HUGE infrastructural projects over the coming year, meaning there'll be plenty of jobs available when I graduate.

3. Grinds
Before I had finished second level, I had done my best to avoid giving grinds to anyone, simply because I was sceptical about my ability to deliver them effectively. 2007 showed that I can, and has presented me with a form of income that I enjoy and receive instantaneously. Never before have I had so many people request for grinds and it's a strange feeling when you know you're in demand!

2. Man Utd
Ah yes, too long have Manchester United been left out of the Premiership crown, and 2007 saw balance restored to the Premiership. Not only did United win the league convincingly, but they made it to the final of the FA Cup, the semi-final of the champions league and they also finished with 9 players on the team of the year, aswell as Cristiano Ronaldo winning any and every award the Premiership has to offer!

1. College Grant
I don't win much, and you could probably say I'm being a bit bigheaded making this number 1, but fuck it! The sheer shock and amazement at receiving a grant for my performance in first year college was by far my happiest memory of 2007. Not many things make me happy, but if anything, the grant showed to me that hard work does pay off!

So, what have we got to look forward to come 2008? Like the points above, I've got a mix of personal and public interests:
  • Well I mentioned the PS3 earlier, and with the DUALSHOCK 3 on the way, aswell as exclusives like "God of War 3", "Metal Gear Solid 4", "Haze" and "Gran Turismo" there's a lot to look forward to, aswell as "Grand Theft Auto 4" and "Star Wars: Force Unleased".
  • 2008 Olympics will hopefully go without a hitch. There's been a lot of criticism regarding China and what not, but only time will tell.
  • Andy Lee is likely to go for a World Title in boxing....certainly something to look out for.
  • Republic of Scotland? There was a lot of talk about this year and 2008 may very well be the year that Scotland becomes fully independent. It would be an amazing event, given that there are very few political events of that kind nowadays that are good.
  • Will Madeleine be found? Enough said.
  • Metallica are set to release their new album come this February/March. All we know so far is that there are 9 tracks and they've announced 3 European tour dates already. Here's hoping that I'll be waiting outside the RDS this year....
  • There's a few films and TV programmes I'm looking forward to, "John Rambo", "Cloverfield", "Lost Series 4" and so on are supposedly on the way. But given the strike in the States at the moment who knows what will happen.
  • Pakistan, Iraq, invasion of Iran? Iraq is still a disaster and Pakistan could follow suit, but with word this year of a potential invasion of Iran, will the Middle East once again be engulfed in war?
  • New U.S President! It's fairly likely we'll have a Democrat in the White House, but is America ready for its first female President in Hillary Clinton, or even its first African-American President in Barack Obama????

Did you also see that 2007 was the year I started my blog and my comics, hopefully I will still be here this time next year, posting the usual waffle and making the same old same old comics!

Here's to 2008!!

~The Damo

Wednesday 26 December 2007

Avatar Project Log - Part 1

I forgot to mention in the last blog so now it's getting its own, but I've also FINALLY started to get working on the Eldar Avatar from Forgeworld....which I got oh emmmmm 5 months ago!
I'm also planning to finally paint up the new Dark Reapers and Prince Yriel aswell which I've had for *cough* 10 months *cough*.

Not to mention I've also got to paint:
High Elf Lord
High Elf Noble
High Elf Archmage
High Elf Mage (Mounted)
5 Shadow Warriors
Dragon Lord Kit
Alith Anar
2 Lion Chariots
Chaos Lord
Chaos Sorcerer
Empire Helblaster Volleygun
20 Empire Flagellants
10 Empire State Troops
10 Empire Handgunners

And yeah...there's more....I'll admit it's quite unlikely that I'll get that done, but I am definitely setting out to get the Eldar and High Elf stuff done!

So anyway yeah, back to the Avatar, I have to get from this:

To this:

I reckon I can do just aswell as Darren there...

~The Damo

Revenant Titan Project Log - Part 2

Last night I finished the assembly and cleaning of the main constituent components:

I'm going for a primarily green colour as is standard with the rest of my Eldar, with white pulsars, leg plates and head, and black shoulder pads and groin plates.

Basically I'm trying to make it echo the Wraithlord model below (which was in fact modelled of the Revenant when the new Wraithlord kit was released).

Now it's on to white and black spray undercoats.....

~The Damo

Tuesday 25 December 2007

Season 3 Promotion!!!

The 3rd and final season of my comics is underway!!! The promotional strip is available for download from ME via MSN or email or whatever.

This blog is pretty short but I cannot upload the image as you well know, so instead I'm just going to ramble here for a brief period in a vane yet also pathetic attempt to keep you interested in what I'm saying, giving you a faint prospect that I may indeed actually write something of use, who knows, maybe I've secretly encoded a cure for cancer in my words, or have given away the secret of life. True it's well known that I postulate such matters, and really, I DO need to write another postulation blog, possibly about abortion since that's a kindof serious issue, or maybe a postulating blog about postulations, now there's something to postulate. Have you ever seen "Are You Smarter than a 10 year old?", it really is amazing to see how stupid some people can be. Speaking of stupid people, you knows who's stupid, Jamie Lynn Spears, getting knocked up by her 19 year old boyfriend who apparently is being sued for statutory rape! Rape, there's another postulation blog there, but I think I'll avoid it. Did you notice that I haven't posted a blog about the Madeleine mystery because they haven't been in the news, well actually they have, they were sent hundreds upon thousands of presents for Christmas, which pisses me off because they neither deserve them and why should they get presents when there's parents who've lost a child aswell. Children can be annoying, one of my brothers dropped one of his presents behind the radiator, it couldn't be pulled from the bottom and took me about half an hour to get it out. See my Revenant below, it took me half an hour to get all the pieces moderately prepped and arranged like that for the photo. Oh, and did you notice I replaced my photo of Kenny Craig on the left because I went as Bjorn the Gay Swedish priest on Halloween aswell. I still have the goatee I cultivated for the costume though and have no intention of getting rid of it in the long run.

Speaking of long, I've made this blog long enough now to keep you interested!

~The Damo

Revenant Titan Project Log - Part 1

Santa Claus was very good to me this year, and forked out a whopping €250 to bring me the Eldar Revenant Titan from Forgeworld.

I'll be keeping posts on my progress here since this will be my largest project to date, of TITANic proportions (pun intended!). The honchos at GW said it would take me about a month, so if I get it done before 25th of January (including custom trophy base) then I'm better than them!

At first I thought they were just lazy, but then I unpacked the kit.....

Each of those pieces has to be washed, sanded and filed, then assembled in whatever pose I chose, undercoated, painted and then placed on a custom base....

God help me...

~The Damo

An Angry Nerd Christmas Carol

Two Videos here from the Nerd for the Christmas Season!!

In other news, the Nerd's DVD VOLUME 1 arrived on Sunday, absolutely brilliant, defo worth the wait!

Part 1:

Part 2:

~The Damo

Wednesday 19 December 2007

Why They're the Best!!!!

There's only one team in England, I found this the other day, brilliant compilation!

The choice of "Bodies" at the start is excellent, my fav is number 2, Scholes!!

~The Damo

Thursday 13 December 2007

Top Ten Metallica!!!

For my 100th post of Master Engineer of Sigmar's Realm I figured I'd do something with a bang, totally rockin', and what better than a Top Ten of one of the world's top metal bands. 25 years later and they're still goin'! Bring on Hall of Fame 2008!!!

Remember, this is just IN MY OPINION!!!!


10. Turn the Page (From Garage Inc.)

9. Fade to Black (From Ride the Lightning)

8. Battery (From Master of Puppets)

7. Blackened (From ...And Justice for All)

6. For Whom the Bell Tolls (From Ride the Lightning)

5. Seek and Destroy (From Kill 'Em All)

4. Creeping Death (From Ride the Lightning)

3. Master of Puppets (From Master of Puppets)

2. One (From ...And Justice for All)

1. ...And Justice for All (From ...And Justice for All)

You'd never guess what my favourite albums are.....

~The Damo

Tuesday 11 December 2007

Grinds My Gears!! - Issue 13

Catherine said I had to update my blog, so today I thought I'd post up all the stuff that I'd wanted to post (including about 4 or 5 posts below this one). If she keeps it up though....she'll be getting a GMG all to herself soon! (Only joking!)

Anyway, I've been wanting to publish this issue of GMG for sometime, and it was only after I came across some videos on YouTube, which are available at the bottom of the blog, that I really encouraged myself to get on and type it up. Of course, I recommend you watch those videos after reading this.

So yeah, anyway, you know what grinds my gears?? Well do ye? The British Media! Those regular readers know that I don't appreciate the British Media at all, especially in regard to its coverage of Madeleine McCann (which Sky News has now removed from its site, YAY!) and Princess Diana, but this also extends to sport.

I think the issue which pisses me off most is that they will cover any story like this to no end, clogging up the TV when other minor stories get a little snippet (the Sky Sports News one best shows this). Take the Canoe story at the moment. You couldn't not find this story on Sky, at least the BBC did some different stories, I mean Sky were interviewing former co-workers and everything!! And don't get me started again on the McCanns and their bleedin' family friends!

Another thing that annoys me is the shear arrogance (probably isn't the right word) of the British Media regarding their sports stars. Remember Paula Radcliffe who "collapsed" during the marathon in Athens? Well Sky spent the whole week coming up with reasons as to why she gave up; the road was too hot, the race was too long, there were too many other athletes etc. Why can't they just admit she was CRAP! Or take Lewis Hamiliton this year, they were complaining that Alonso and Spanish Formula 1 board requested that an independent investigator be present at McClaren to make sure Hamiliton didn't get any preferential treatment. COMPLAINING!! It's all well and good to wish your stars good luck on TV, but to try and downplay a very legitimate request regarding a British driver on a British team is unnacceptable.

Before England failed to qualify for Euro 2008 this year, the English Panel would refuse to admit that there team was shit. We knew it over here, the whole of Europe new it, but the English panel felt they had a divine right to be the be the worlds best. I cannot describe to you the satisfaction I felt seeing Croatia score that 3rd goal, and credit to the BBC, there panel had the balls to say they were crap, but that still doesn't account for the years and years of rubbish we had to put up with.

The same goes for Rugby, no sooner had South Africa won, than the article on Sky Sports went up, criticising the decision to disallow the try that might have won England the game. Or most recently, in the Hatton Vs Mayweather fight, it was very interesting to read that the referee "favoured" Mayweather and didn't allow Hatton to get into his stride, whereas on, the referee had to "work hard" to keep the match clean and fair.

The shear ignorance of the British Media seems to know no bounds, and that is why I have the following two videos below.

First, is Apres Match's play on Sky Sports:

Second is called "Channel Hopping" where it illustrates the difference between English and Irish coverage of the English Team:

And finally this one, it has nothing to do with the blog but its just funny!

Okie Doke, huh LIVE!

~The Damo

Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga - Review

I remember when I first heard there would be a Lego Star Wars game that I had serious doubts about how "Lego" and "Star Wars" and the PS2 would work. Needless to say, those doubts were crushed when Episode 1 Level 1: Negotiations loaded up on the screen.

How the developers could've have made this game so "right" is beyond me. It had been a long time since I had played something that was simply "fun" and satisfying. I don't know what it is but there's just something about going around the Geonosian Arena as General Grevious hacking up loads of battle droids that's so entertaining!

And then we heard there would be a sequel involving the original trilogy, and somehow.... SOMEHOW it actually got BETTER!! The sequel included usable vehicles, new powerups, longer levels and just more....FUN!

So when I heard there would be a new improved game, compiling both games into one and redesigning the first game to accomodate improvements made in the second, I had it down as a must buy for the PS3 this year. And despite the fact that my brothers have the original two on the PS2, I don't regret buying The Complete Saga for myself in the slightest.

The menu is the same as the one in The Original Trilogy, using the Mos Eisely Cantina as the link way to each of the six episodes. Here you can also edit your own two customisable characters and purchase unlockable ones and extras which can make the gameplay more fun (believe it or not!). It's perhaps the lack of intensity that makes this game so successful. If you die, you just break apart, lose some coins, then come back to life.... And believe me, you will die..a LOT! Most enemies die with one hit of the lightsaber or blaster or bitch slap (if you're Princess Leia) though some can take two or three hits, depending on who they are. Generally speaking the game isn't exactly challenging, but that's what makes it so much fun. The Jedi Battle level can be a little tricky and the jumping for the Obi-Wan VS Anakin duel can be annoying aswell, but that's not sufficient to detract from the enjoyment of the game.

The game uses the "Gold Brick" system again, one for completing the level, another for finding all ten canisters and a final one for getting "True Jedi". In total there are 160 Gold Bricks to be found, which are then used to unlock bonus levels. In total there is 160 new characters including Indiana Jones to promote the forthcoming Lego: Indiana Jones game. There are 36 standard story levels, a number of bonus levels specific to their respective film, aswell as 6 other bonus levels (including two lego cities) and 20 Bounty Hunter Levels. Out of 36 standard levels there are 4 key things to be achieved (not including the actual completion of the level), to achieve "True Jedi" which is collection a certain amount of lego coins (of which there are many, so achieving True jedi is rarely a problem, though sometimes can be a little tedious), to collect all 10 canisters which make a Lego Mini-Kit model, which usually corresponds to the level played, to find the red power brick which enables you to buy upgrades extras such as Invincibility or Super Slap or whatever, and finally to collect the ten bonus canisters under 10 minutes. The last one is a new feature, which upon completion gives you a certain number of coins.

At the moment I'm at about 85% by the way. When you've bought all the characters they'll roam around the cantina, and attack them if you wish. Obviously Free Play has returned, which I should've mentioned earlier, which allows you to replay the level with any characters you want, so if you feel in the mood to have Anakin and Yoda fight the Emperor in Return of the Jedi you can. In fact, Free Play is essential if you want to find all the canisters and red power bricks.

In conclusion, if you don't have Lego Star Wars, but are into the Star Wars, then there's just no excuse for you not having it. It is truely a very enjoyable experience suitable for all ages. And if you're not into Star Wars, you should still get it, as it'll give you a taste of the forthcoming Lego: Indiana Jones and Lego: Batman. One would think that the developers are onto a winning franchise here. The Complete Saga is available on all seventh generation consoles.
Graphics: 10
Gameplay: 10
Sound: 9
Unlockables: 10
Longevity: 10
Multiplayer: 8

Overall: 9.8

Seriously...BUY IT!

~The Damo

The Arsenal of Megadeth

Just recently, I found out that Megadeth have released a massively huge new 4CD 1 DVD boxset entitled "Warchest" which is pretty much a compilation of all their best stuff (over 6 hours in fact, including 33 previously unreleased songs) aswell as a live CD and full live DVD. The boxset comes housed in unique "vac-u-form" package with a 36 page booklet containing photos, liner notes and full discography.

Though its a little unfortunate that I pretty much already have all their stuff and won't fork out €60+ to have it shipped over from America, it is regardless a very impressive compilation which would be the ideal purchase for anyone wanting to get into them. Rather cleverly they haven't included anything from United Abominations and very little from The System Has Failed, which I guess is a ploy to make you buy them both, which are arguably their best albums to date (and most recent).

Disc: 1
1. Killing Is My Business...And Business Is Good!
2. The Skull Beneath The Skin
3. Peace Sells
4. Wake Up Dead
5. Devils Island
6. Set The World Afire
7. Into The Lungs Of Hell
8. Anarchy/Problems [session take]
9. Hook In Mouth
10. Liar
11. In My Darkest Hour
12. No More Mr. Nice Guy
13. “dark themes…”
14. Holy Wars…The Punishment Due [Casey McMackin demo]
15. Tornado Of Souls [demo]
16. Five Magics [demo]
17. Hangar 18

Disc: 2
1. “keeping score…”
2. Symphony Of Destruction
3. Go To Hell - "Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey" Soundtrack
4. Foreclosure Of A Dream
5. Architecture Of Aggression [demo]
6. Skin O’ My Teeth [live at Alpine Valley, East Troy, WI 5/23/92]
7. High Speed Dirt [live at Alpine Valley, East Troy, WI 5/23/92]
8. Ashes In Your Mouth [live at the Cow Palace, S.F., CA 12/4/92]
9. Sweating Bullets [live at the Cow Palace, S.F., CA 12/4/92]
10. Breakpoint [session take]
11. Angry Again
12. Train Of Consequences
13. Reckoning Day
14. New World Order
15. The Killing Road
16. Strange Ways
17. Paranoid
18. Diadems
19. A Tout Le Monde

Disc: 3
1. Trust
2. Almost Honest
3. Use The Man
4. She-Wolf
5. A Secret Place [live at Woodstock, NY 7/25/99]
6. One Thing
7. Duke Nukem
8. Insomnia
9. Crush ‘Em
10. Kill The King
11. Dread And The Fugitive Mind
12. Never Say Die
13. Moto Psycho
14. 1000 Times Goodbye
15. Coming Home
16. Kick The Chair
17. Of Mice And Men

Disc: 4
1. intro/Rattlehead
2. Wake Up Dead
3. Hangar 18
4. Hook In Mouth
5. The Skull Beneath The Skin
6. The Conjuring
7. In My Darkest Hour
8. Lucretia
9. Devils Island
10. Take No Prisoners
11. Peace Sells
12. Black Friday
13. It's Electric
14. Anarchy In The U.K.
15. Holy Wars… The Punishment

Disc: 5
1. Intro/Holy Wars…The Punishment Due
2. Wake Up Dead
3. Hangar 18
4. Lucretia
5. Sweating Bullets
6. In My Darkest Hour
7. Tornado Of Souls
8. Ashes In Your Mouth
9. Peace Sells
10. Anarchy In The U.K.

Hopefully they'll play the Ambassador again next year.....

~The Damo

If I Could Be A Superhero.....

...I would be Justice Guy!

Ok probably not, but just for the idea of the title watch this:

and this:

Unfortunately the sound quality is a bit naff, but it's decent enough.

Ok well really that has nothing to do with anything I wanted to say, as I came across this website about a week ago:

Which lets you make your own superhero in a rockin' style. It's not the most user friendly interface but after a while I got the hang of it and made this guy:

Can you guess who he is?

~The Damo

Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare - A Review

Earlier this year, I bought Call of Duty 3 for the PS3, the first Call of Duty game I'd ever bought, and I was simply blown away by the shear realism and intensity of the gameplay. It's no surprise then that when I heard COD 4 was on the way I was extremely excited. But not only that, COD4's developers decided to do something different. Rather than make yet another World War 2 shooter, they focused this game on 21st century warfare, and it impressed beyond all my expectations.

The game spans from the Middle East, to Chernobyl and even deep into the Motherland. The story is told mainly from the perspective of a British SAS trooper named "Soap" McTavish and for a portion of Act I it's told from the perspective of a US Marine Corp Sergeant Paul Jackson.

Rather than waffle on about the storyline, which is quite impressive for a FPS, I'll head straight into one of the game's feature stand points - its realism. All weapons in the game are based on real-life weapons, I could try to name them all but most have complex names with loads of letters and numbers in them that I'd probably make mistakes spelling them out and even more likely you wouldn't have a clue what I'm talking about. You can hold a maximum of two weapons, more often than not some kind of machine gun and a pistol sidearm, though there are weapons from all walks of life, including shotguns, sniper rifles, sub machine guns and missile launchers. This is one of the things that makes COD stand out from other FPS. You can only hold two weapons, which is about right for any kindof soldier, whereas the likes of Medal of Honour will allow you to hold 5 or 6 weapons. You're also armed with a knife for those sticky situations.

Speaking of those, one would think of a shooter game to be just shooting, but it's more than that. I tapped the faithful R3 button more times than I have fingers and toes to save my ass.

The AI in the game is superb, and adds 100% to the intensity of the gameplay. There's rarely a time when you can take a breather and give yourself a momentary lapse in concentration. Enemies come from everywhere, and when I first set foot in the Middle East setting of the game, I couldn't help but think that this was exactly what fighting in Iraq felt like. (In fact, there's one moment in the game when you see a statue of the fictional dictator collapse, much like the way a certain Iraqi dictators statue collapsed). Enemies will duck behind cover, throw grenades and even launch rockets at you. Speaking of cover, COD4's engine created a new type of cover system. In previous games of this genre and even those from other genres, simply hiding behind a chair would be enough to protect you. Not here though, wood, thin plaster walls, PVC pipes are all porous to bullets, meaning you'd want to be in some pretty good cover to protect yourself.

The game also incorporated a kindof hidden catch in the gameplay. In most of the Middle Eastern fighting, you and your comrades will be fighting through the streets with militia firing all round. You can pick them off alright, only to find that they'll be replaced shortly by someone else, all day long, but if you don't physically push forward yourself (as in YOU controlling your character) then they won't go away, so the game forces you to take an active role in the gameplay shooting.

Now enemies are armed with all kinds of weapons, but they have in their arsenal one of the most powerful weapons of war at their disposal. No its not RPG's, its attack dogs! I cannot tell you how many times I was killed by a bleeding dog! They are on you so quickly that only a timely tap of the R1 button to shoot your rifle or a punch of the R3 knife slash will get them off. Once they're on you, you're dead, end of story. It's probably also an appropriate time now to mention the health system. In COD, you don't have "health" persay. When you get hit a certain number of times (and that number of times is proportional to the level of difficulty) a red blur surrounds the screen indicating that you should get into cover. If you don't, you're dead. This red blur doesn't show up if you are bitten by an attack dog, blown up by a grenade or killed by a knife, you're just simply dead!

All that said and done, COD4 is a must for PC, PS3 or Xbox owners, the multiplayer will have you coming back for more because as we all know, human intelligence is always better than AI.

Graphics: 10
Sound: 9
Gameplay: 10
Longevity: 8
Unlockables: 8
Multiplayer: 10

Overall: 9.5

~The Damo