Civilization Revolution 2: I can’t stop

IMG_0011_2

Civilization Revolution on the Xbox 360 was my very first exposure to the Civilization franchise. The very first time I played it I was addicted. There was just something amazing about trying to set up the perfect defenses to keep your Nation alive before venturing out and engaging in little skirmishes to raise the experience levels of your armies as you advance your technology and eventually make a play to rule the world.

Going from Civ Revolution to Civ V on the PC was quite the shock. Not only is it a lot slower paced, there’s a lot more to manage and keep track of. I’m not saying this is a bad thing, but it’s not necessarily a quick fix type of game. At first I couldn’t get a grasp on Civ V as it was just too different (for example, being unable to stack troops makes it very difficult to navigate into tight spaces and launch an attack). Now I love Civ V just as much as I loved Civ Revolution, it’s just very time consuming.

Enter Civilization Revolution 2, the $14.99 iOS exclusive (for the moment). Having such an amazing game available at any time on my iPad is amazing, and it’s worth every penny, if not more. The game looks and plays almost exactly like the 2008 console release, with a few additions and improvements.

Playing a Civ game on a touch device is easy, and intuitive. Tap a troop and tap where you want it to go. Everything comes naturally, I don’t think I could ever go back to playing Civ Revolution with a controller. It also runs quite smoothly on the iPad Air and looks great all the time.

10544337_10107005723570694_4580999677554617363_n

I’ve already sunk something around 10 hours into Civ Revolution 2, and I’ve loved every minute of it. The only problem I have is putting it down. Most people come to expect mobile games to be quick fix games, but mobile gaming has come a long way since Angry Birds. You now have full featured games on mobile devices as opposed to stripped down iterations. A few of my Civ Revolution 2 games have lasted three hours or longer and the time flew by before I realized it. I’ll tell myself ‘just one more turn’ and before long I’m 50 turns deeper.

10544304_10107005723645544_2345795580640629640_n

Beware Civ Revolution 2’s addictive properties. Recently after finishing a 3 hour Civ Rev 2 game I immediately jumped onto my MacBook and began a Civ V game.

If you have an iOS device I highly recommend purchasing Civilization Revolution 2. You’ll get countless hours of enjoyment out of it if you enjoy strategy games or Civ games. If the PC versions of Civilization have intimidated you I also suggest you check out Civ Rev 2 as it’s much easier to get into and you’ll be having fun before you know it.

Civilization Revolution 2 is available in the App Store for $14.99

About these ads
Posted in Apple, iOS games, Video Games | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My summer watchlist (so far)

I’ve enjoyed quite a few great indie movies this summer and I’ve quickly fallen in love with indie movies. A few of my favorites I’ve already watch include The Pretty One and Ping Pong Summer, both of which were quite enjoyable (The Pretty One has become one of my favorite films of all time joining (500) Days of Summer and Juno among others).

Lately I’ve been compiling a list of movies I intend to watch in August, if possible, while overseas. A lot of the films in this list caught my attention through their pleasant movie posters and after watching the trailers I can’t wait to watch all of them. Most I hadn’t even heard of until coming across them on Indiewire which has become my number one source for discovering new movies.

I should note that I know little to nothing about any of the films I’m going to list. That’s a lot of what I like about indie films, I can go into them with hardly any knowledge or expectations and experience something new and refreshing.

The first on the list is Prince Avalanche.

5f01c58d448830077d3a3542e687b106

One of the things that really stands out to me is the use of color in the scenes shown in the trailer. I absolutely love films that could almost double as paintings, if that makes sense. I feel like all the colors mix pleasantly and at the same time stand out against the green, brown and grey backdrops shown in the scenes. This alone has me wanting to watch this film in HD and just enjoy taking in all the scenery.

Next up is Touchy Feely.

2f69432b0a32b0dca19b5647cfead064

Again, I love the poster for this film. I also absolutely adore Ellen Page, so I was already sold on this film before I even watched the trailer. The trailer has piqued my interest, and I don’t know much about the film other than I can’t wait to watch it.

Blue Ruin

 

 

ac91f85dae26d28ceedbd34517acb6c7

 

Things take a turn away from the seemingly cheery atmospheres of the previous two films with Blue Ruin. It looks both suspenseful and thrilling and I’m looking forward to seeing how it plays out.

Ain’t Them Bodies Saints

92a180770aa4db07f8538b34dbbef936

 

It’s hard to say what exactly caught my eye with this film. I think it has something to do with the title, I just like the sound of it so I figure why not watch it?

 

Posted in Movies | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

I have two Xbox One Destiny beta codes up for grabs

10492395_10106856221628784_6165719955643407866_n

Hey there, haven’t posted in awhile but I just wanted to stop in and offer up two Destiny beta codes for Xbox One. Just throw your e-mail address in the comments and I’ll give the two codes away (probably sometime tonight).

Hopefully I’ll be able to get into the beta after work tomorrow morning (on night shift) and I’d like to post my thoughts on it if I have the time. Until then, thanks for stopping by.

Posted in Video Games | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Bose SoundTrue headphones

10489757_10106758743850034_9097661279078828223_n

I had been looking to pick up a decent pair of headphones to use while watching movies, listening to music and playing games without disturbing others. My budget was around $150 and I ended up narrowing my choices down to the Bose SoundTrue and Beats by Dre Solo HD 2. They were both priced around $150 at the NEX, though their prices vary elsewhere.

I initially liked the Beats as they had a lot of kick to them at high volume and sounded pretty good, but once I tried on the Bose I knew which one I’d be walking away with. The Bose headphones just have an incredibly rich and authentic sound that I don’t think the Beats are able to replicate. I especially love the sound of acoustic rock and classical music with the Bose headphones. You can close your eyes and feel like you’re right there in a concert hall, I love it! They sound great at any volume and are a huge improvement over the Samsung in ear headphones I had been using that came with my phone.

I’m not sure how I’ve gone this long without owning a pair of headphones like these, they’ve made listening to music on my phone and watching movies on my laptop or tablet much more enjoyable.

Photo on 7-15-14 at 8.21 AM #2

I enjoy the way that they look and also that they’re quite comfortable to wear. They are so light you barely notice you’re wearing them, and they never get uncomfortable to wear even for long periods of time. I highly recommend trying the Bose headphones out if you have the chance.

Posted in Music | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

FOX and DISH Anywhere: Why I’m no longer watching FOX

One of the main reasons I subscribed to DISH Network was because of the DISH Anywhere feature with the Hopper. DISH Anywhere allows you to tune into live TV from anywhere on any device with an internet connection. The Hopper has Slingbox technology built in, so basically you can watch TV through your receiver over the internet.

Now that broadcast companies have succeeded in taking down a brilliant new technology with Aereo, FOX is already going after Dish Network in an attempt to put a stop to DISH Anywhere.

As a member of the military who uses DISH Anywhere to watch live and recorded TV anywhere in the world, I’m not too happy with Fox’s decision. I pay for DISH, and DISH pays to rebroadcast network television, how I consume those broadcasts is none of Fox’s business. The fact that they are so against technology making TV consumption better (especially for those often away from home) has driven me to the decision to no longer watch any Fox broadcasting.

I sincerely hope DISH fights Fox on this (which I believe they will) and I seriously hope another great technology is not killed by the hands of greedy executives who do not care for their consumers.

Posted in TV | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

A few songs

Just popping in to share a few songs I’m really loving right now and can’t get enough of. I’ve been on a huge alternative kick lately mostly fueled by enjoying listening to Alt Nation on SiriusXM almost religiously. Here are a few songs I can’t stop listening to.

Bleachers – “Rollercoaster”

This feels like the perfect summer anthem, and I just picture sitting on the beach at night by a fire watching the reflections of the flames and the moon on the waves while listening to this song. I absolutely love everything about this song.

American Authors – “Love”

Another great summer love song. Upbeat and cheery, its something you can just shout along to at the top of your lungs in the car.

Little Comets – “Dancing Song”

To me this sounds like a perfect mashup of Vampire Weekend and Modest Mouse. Cheery, wacky and full of energy throughout.

Suckers – “Roman Candles”

I don’t really know what else to say other than I just like the sound of this song. The whistling is catchy and the beat is soothing.

Last, but not least, I want to share one of my favorite music videos and songs of all time. Grouplove’s “Ways to Go”. I love the feel of both the song and the video, it’s catchy and uplifting and I can never stop watching the video.

Posted in Music | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Just watched: The Pretty One (loved it!)

the-pretty-one-122216-poster-xlarge-resized

I was looking for a movie to watch long distance with my girlfriend and ended up coming across this one on the Google Play store. Something about it just caught my eye  (maybe it was Zoe Kazan ;))and after watching the trailer I knew I wanted to watch it.

The movie tells the story of identical twins, one who is ‘the pretty one’ and the other is the ‘quiet, shy, awkward one’. When an accident takes the live of one of the sisters the surviving twin (the shy one) is mistaken for the other. The surviving twin is then living in a world post-death and must then learn who she really is and where she fits in in the world. There’s a great love story alongside the story of finding oneself and it’s both heartwarming and tearjerking.

I have to say I absolutely LOVE the color in this film. I don’t know how to describe it, other than to say the colors just caught my eye and everything seems to fit right, like a perfect painting. I absolutely love films that seem to use color to set the mood, and this one is on par with (500) Days of Summer and The Great Gatsby (2013) in that regard. I also love the use of music in the movie, especially toward the end.

the-pretty-one06

You may not have heard of this movie (I never have), but it’s certainly worth seeing. Please do yourself a favor and give this film a chance, you’re very unlikely to regret it.

Posted in Movies | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Can you subscribe to Netflix with a Visa gift card?

Yes, in fact you can.

If you for whatever reason wanted to subscribe to Netflix using a Visa Vanilla Prepaid gift card, it is in fact possible. I had a hard time finding a definite answer to the question while searching Google, so I decided to answer it here, once and for all. You can, indeed use a Visa Vanilla gift card to pay for a Netflix subscription.

I decided to try it out since I’m away from home and happened to pull out cash to use while on “vacation”. I purchased a $25 Visa Vanilla gift card, went to the website listed on the back of the card and registered the card with a zip code. This is important, as these cards tend not to work for online payments unless you register them first.

After that I entered the card information into my Netflix account and was able to restart my membership without any issue. Many answers on various websites including Yahoo Answers have stated that this will not work, but I’m here to confirm that it does work and it’s essentially the only way to pay for Netflix using “cash” instead of a debit or credit card.

Just thought I’d clear that up.

Posted in Movies, TV | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Away for the summer

I’m officially away for the summer. Luckily, right now I still have pretty decent internet access but what’s more important is getting out and exploring as much of the world as I can. I’m incredibly grateful that the United States Air Force has enabled me to have these many great experiences. I’ll try to blog as often as I can, I’ve been pretty bad about it lately, but it’s been a busy month.

Until I have the chance to sit down and write I’ll just post a few pictures.

1486732_10106579515245594_6821250607304503521_n20140531_17310720140531_18051320140531_18344520140531_18345320140531_171450  20140531_173116

Posted in Travel | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Two issues I have with the Samsung Galaxy S5

This will be brief, but I feel the need to talk about a few annoyances I’ve had with the Samsung Galaxy S5. All of my previous smartphones have been iPhones and I enjoyed them, but for whatever reason I decided to try out the Galaxy S5. It’s not a bad phone, I like the screen size, the fact that it’s waterproof and the SD card slot, yet there are some annoyances I don’t feel you should have to put up with.

First of all when I have the charging port cover open and plugged in while I’m in the car and I’m trying to listen to music or a podcast via auxiliary I’m met with a major annoyance. As I’m driving the phone constantly pops up with a reminder that the charging port is open, and each time this happens it mutes the music. At the very least the notification pops every ten seconds and at most pops ever 3-4 seconds. Therefore it’s entirely impossible to listen to music while also charging the phone in the car.

Secondly, when I have the phone in my pocket at work with it set to swipe to unlock it somehow constantly unlocks and moves apps and creates widgets all over the place. Not only that, but apps and games start opening on their own, music starts playing and I somehow send texts filled with gibberish or create reminders and notes filled with long strings of random text. You would assume that setting up a lock screen would prevent this from happening, and while it does it also creates another issue.

With the phone set to a pin lock or even pattern lock I manage to pocket dial 911. I’ve pocket dialed 911 from work several times over the last week and keep getting return calls from the local police. I called them back and explained what happened, but I can’t seem to prevent the issue from continuing to happen.

Issues like this are what’s going to drive me back to Apple. I’ve never had anything even remotely similar happen with an iPhone and I think overall Apple builds a better product. Android is just too ‘wonky’, weird and unreliable for me.

Posted in Apple, Mobile, Technology | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment