Monthly Archives: December 2012

Stressed for Finals?!

Stressed over finals? Well trust me, you are not alone. Students like you and I are probably working full time jobs, trying to maintain a personal life, and trying to keep up with college can get extremely overwhelming. In the middle of this chaos, look at the big picture of it all. Will you look back ten years from now and think, “Wow, I really worked hard for my dream and achieved it”, or will you be looking back with regrets and what if’s over something you could’ve accomplished, if you gave your all?
We have to remember that although we have obstacles in life, it is all worth going through at the end. We are humans and we learn from our mistakes as we go! If these two final weeks of the semester are really getting to you, I know the last thing you want is to pick up a book and read for the sake of your imagination to run. But try to dedicate at least an hour or two for yourself. Get away from the studies, and actually try to focus on yourself. Stressing over something or not having a break between studies can really affect not only your grade in a class, but also affect you mentally. Here are a few tips that you might want to consider to relax before these finals:
INNER PEACE
• Meditate for a few minutes before you go to sleep or when you wake up. Whatever free time you have, every bit counts!
• Remember to breathe deeply and count to ten if you really need some patience.
NEW ENVIRONMENT
• Find the sun and go outside for a few minutes, enjoy the weather!
• Organize anything that is not, cleaning your room is scientifically proven to actually help a lot of people feel less stressed and cluttered.
EXERCISE
• If you are not the type to exercise, walking your dog outside for ten minutes can really help you.
• Stretch out when you wake up, or before you head to bed. This can relief stress and tension from your body.
SUPPORT/ FAMILY AND FRIENDS
• What is better than having your favorite people around?
• Go out to lunch/dinner with friends one day.
• AND LAUGH! It’s one of the most amazing things that money can’t buy! AND IT’S FREE!

Halo 4 Video Game Review

One of the best multiplayer games to come out this year without a doubt has to be Halo 4.  343 Industries takes over the Halo series from Bungie, and is working now to create a new trilogy in which to further the story with our lucky hero, Master Chief. As it’s not something I prefer to talk about, the Campaign itself is just as it should be, a shotgun barrel to the face in one hand, and a good drink in the other. By that, I mean it’s both fun and new to play, while at the same time, can be very difficult.  I myself have this problem where I go headfirst into a video game’s campaign, and play it by myself on the hardest difficulty. (Never is this a fun. NEVER.)  The story takes place basically a few years after the events of Halo 3, in which you are now floating around in deep space, as Master Chief, until the decimated space station you were in is being salvaged by a Covenent fleet. At first, this is no problem for our badass Spartan, but soon this becomes a problem, as Master Chief and Cortana are found Orbiting a Forerunner planet, a race that was to their knowledge, gone. While being on the planet, Master Chief has to deal with the Forerunner and their devastating technology, to find a way to get back to Earth.  The part about the Forerunner that makes this game so much fun, is the new arsenal of weapons in this game. From super powerful rifles that can kill people from across the map, to rocket launchers that can bounce off of the surfaces and explode into multiple shots, these new weapon pack quite a punch. A fun thing that happens, if it’s a one hit kill, the new weapons will disintegrate your fallen enemies. While adding elements from Halo:Reach with their armor abilities, this game takes those, and makes them a bit more interesting, with the concept of creating your own classes for multiplayer, along with weapon loadouts, perks, and what kind of abilities your Spartan will use in combat, similar to how the Call of Duty games function. This allows you to make sure you spawn however you want, all the time. They’ve also taken out weapon spawning on maps. Rather than that, there are random points in the game where “Ordinances” will drop into the map, supplying weapons. Along with that, you can gain points towards an “Ordinance Drop” of your own, where you can call it in from anywhere, with a random choice of 3 items. The points are gained from objectives, kills, and assist, so you don’t have to be a pro to get them. Minor changes to how the gameplay is would include the fact that sprinting is now something that everyone can do, and surprising, this is the first game for Halo to have sprinting as a real thing, as in Halo: Reach, it was an armor ability. Also, during matches, you have the option to instant respawn, so you can get right back into the action, rather than waiting to respawn. This, although doesn’t make the matches itself faster, but makes the gameplay itself more fast-pace, as you would be playing more and more times, within said match, rather than having that down time in between deaths. (Unless you commit suicide. That is never a good thing.) With these new game mechanics with new and old weapons to fight with, this makes Halo 4, and 343 Industries promising for the future of Halo. I definitely would recommend this for anyone who enjoys playing first-person shooters, or generally anyone who has an affinity with sci-fi games in general.  I would give Halo 4 a whopping 4 Battle Rifles out of 5, for their good use in game mechanics, hooking storyline, and efforts put forth to bring back a close to dying series.Image

Let the Battle Begin! (PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale Review) By Roberto Gonzalez

For years, Gamers have been taking their favorite character of one game and pitting them against the character of another in a fight to the death.  Metaphorically speaking of course.  In reality, they only wished they could do such a thing.  It wasn’t until Super Smash Bros. first released that the gamers received their wish.  They could put their favorite characters, such as Samus of Metroid Prime and Mario, against each other in fun and exciting ways.  Later in life, Tekken and Street Fighters would join together to bring a whole new array of fights that hardcore fighting-game fans loved.  Today, new challengers have entered the arena.

Who would win in a fight: Jak and Daxter, or Big Daddy?  How about Cole Macgrath vs. Heihachi Mishima?  People have loved the games that have been solely for the PlayStation series long before Xbox arrived on the scene (PS1 and PS2 came first, then Xbox).  However, soon after the Xbox arrived, most popularity for the PlayStations ended abruptly.  In order to bring back some fans, Sony created the PS3.  Due to the Xbox’s arrival first, there was a larger quantity of video games already out there.  Trying to give the PS3 a chance, creators made some games PS3-only, to give the system its own unique roster of people.  Eventually, all these famous characters were brought together in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale.

As the title gives away, PS All-Stars is a fighting game, mashing together classic PlayStation legends in one grand battle royale.  The game features characters all the way from Fat Princess to Big Daddy of Bioshock.  They even have some characters that will make their debut next year, like the new Dante from DMC: Devil May Cry.

The gameplay has been likened to that of Super Smash Bros. for many similar traits.  Battles can consist of 2-4 characters, each with their own unique attacks.  From a roster of 20 people (19 if Evil Cole and Good Cole are counted as one person), players can choose their favorite characters to challenge each other in incredible battles, from arcade mode to 2 vs. 2.  Players attack their opponents in order to fill their AP Bars at the bottom of the screen.  Once a number between 1 and 3 is reached, players can activate special attacks to kill enemies.

Of course, there is a large difference between the fighting-styles of SSB and PSASBR.  In Battle Royale, characters do not die by normal means.  Characters can be sent off screen for a moment and reappear with a temporary disorientation.  The only way to win a battle in the game is by using a special attack.  Other than that, there is no possible way to die.  This has left many gamers with conflicting feeling about this new path.

Arcade mode features randomized fights, also featuring a rivalry fight and a final boss.  However, many gamers had been hoping for more of a story.  Instead, the characters each get an opening and ending cutscene that looks like posters telling very small tidbits about the character.  The only true game cutscene is between the rivals and that only lasts for perhaps 30 seconds at most.

Many people have complaints about the result of the solo mode, but multiplayer is where this game shines.  Due to free Wi-Fi, players all around the world (or wherever this game is sold) log in and try their luck against another player.  Players can verse each other in timed or stock matches, and can fight 2 on 2 or free-for-all.  With all the competition out there, people log in every single day to try and get to the top.

Most critics and reviewers have given this game a 6 or 7 out of 10.  In my opinion, they did not include the fact that the game is addictive.  This game only arrived on the market about 2 weeks ago, and yet there are players who have brought their favorite characters to level 999, the highest level possible.  People love using their favorite characters and have a blast fighting as that person.

That is why I personally give this game a 9 out of 10.  Story mode leaves gamers disappointed, but once they go online, they have a hard time putting the controller down.  This game is no Super Smash Bros. or Tekken and Street Fighters, but this game has the potential to become a fan favorite and hopefully become a continuous series.  Until that time comes, people will just have to settle the first installment of PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale!

(Link to trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RxTYkuSIjk4&list=FLqJj41-Z-ZwMv5VaUG1CTgQ)

STOP THE SPANKING By Danielle Sweeting

 

Spanking

Quick facts about spanking:

  • spanking can cause children to be aggressive
  • children who are physically punished are four times more likely to attack other kids
  • children who are spanked are more likely to attack parents
  • spanking can cause a child to learn how to suppress emotions which can lead to depression and anxiety
  • if boys, spanking can lead to abusive relationships

If these few facts are not alarming enough just go to: www.stophitting.org and learn more about the effects and what is meaning of spanking.

Santa Claus is Coming to Town…And He Brought Some Friends! (Rise of the Guardians Video Game Review)

There’s no use hiding the truth.  We all used to believe in fairytales.  We believed in the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, and, of course, Santa Claus.  To many of us out there, these imaginary figures stood strong in our imaginations, unwavering and bringing hope to us in the right occasion.  However, as time ticked away, children grew and these figures vanished from their minds and hearts.  In the end, there really isn’t an Easter Bunny or Santa Claus…right?

What if I told you that all these figures existed, but not as you knew them?  What if I told you that they had another mission, to protect the children of the world when great evil threatened them?  DreamWorks showed a whole different side to these characters in ‘Rise of the Guardians.’

Pitch Black (Boogeyman) has finally returned to drown the world in darkness.  In order to stop him, North (Santa Claus), Bunnymund (Easter Bunny), Sandy (Sandman), and Toothiana (Tooth Fairy) must once again join forces.  However, they are not enough.  A new Guardian must join their ranks if they wish to finish a battle that never ended.  However, no one could predict that the newest member would be the infamous Jack Frost, an immortal and mischievous teenager whose only wish is to be seen by humans.  With a new member to the team, the Guardians hope to defeat Pitch before everything they stand for is destroyed before their very eyes.

I know that at first glance, more than a quarter of college students would just brush aside this movie, mainly because they would view it as being childish.  However, is it so wrong to act like a child every now and then?  Watching this film, memories began to flood my mind.

Who doesn’t remember trying to stay up on Christmas Eve with a plate of cookies and warm milk for the man who gave them not only gifts, but wonderment?  If you don’t celebrate Christmas, you at least should remember placing a tooth under your pillow and waking up with a coin or a dollar, ecstatic about the late night visitor you had.

Yes, the film may seem childish, but it is a real treat for those who like to reminisce about the past.  It is also a great film for children who love these imaginary figures right now.  The film is not as funny as some of DreamWorks’ other works, such as Shrek, or How to Train Your Dragon, but it had some little moments that will leave you with a good laugh.  All in all, this movie was meant to be watched with a family.

The material that was placed in the movie in nothing short of genius.  The original idea for these figures becoming Protectors of Childhood came from William Joyce.  From there, it only took an extra step to put all these famous childhood characters into a film where they acted like holiday power rangers.

In all seriousness, it took a large amount of ingenuity to bring these beings together as a group.  The end result was this film, which I would not mind watching again.  So to sum up some pros: it brings back memories, great for kids, family-friendly, and it is a great idea altogether.  On a scale of 1-5, this movie deserves at least a 4 in my opinion.

In the movie, the Tooth Fairy is known as the Guardian of Memories.  It makes sense, because memories are like teeth.  Once you lose them, they never come back.  However, as time goes on, new teeth, and memories, grow and strengthen.  However, that doesn’t mean that the old memories should be forgotten.  Some people say that they are too old to believe in these characters that seem to pop right out of fairytales.  They say that they are too old to remember.  I don’t believe that.  Because no one is too old to remember their pasts.