Time to re-up on Xbox Live, $39.99 for 1 year via Microsoft

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Microsoft itself has cut the price of a year of Xbox Live to $39.99 via the Microsoft Store. There are often sales on Xbox Live subscriptions via other sources, such as Amazon, but this is the first time I’ve seen Microsoft itself selling a subscription for a discounted price (it certainly may have happened before).

There’s no indication of how long the $20 discount will last, so snatch up your code while you can!

I’ve been a monthly subscriber for way too long, and have essentially been throwing away money. I picked up a code and along with my free month from the Master Chief Collection I’m now ‘golden’ until April 2016.


Trivial Pursuit Live now available


Alongside You Don’t Know Jack, Trivial Pursuit has always been one of my favorite party games on consoles and I’m delighted to report that the current gen version is now available for purchase on Xbox One (among other systems).

I’m excited to try it out! I love playing Trivia games with my girlfriend, and can’t wait to dig into Trivial Pursuit Live! this weekend.

It’s available for $14.99 and is 821MB.

Fifty Shades of Grey


Last night we saw Fifty Shades of Grey, but before we made our way to the theater we stopped at the Yard House to make sure I was fully prepared to see this “chick flick” (of sorts).

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A couple Sam Adam’s led to the dark, yet drinkable Odin’s Gift (an amber ale from Odin Brewing of Seattle). After the drinks we walked over to the theater and took our seats. We chose the VIP section so that we could have dinner as well (and more importantly a few more beers).


So, what did I think of the movie? Well it wasn’t terrible. Both Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson play their roles well and great chemistry. I hadn’t read the book, so I can’t really comment on how well the movie treats its source material, but on its own it told a pretty coherent and enjoyable story.

It’s worth nothing that there’s quite a bit of nudity in the film, but it’s tasteful. Probably due to the R rating (as opposed to NC-17), almost all of the sex scenes only show the female upper body. Anastasia’s facial expressions do a pretty good job of telling the rest of the story, however I imagine hardcore fans of the books probably are left wanting.

I really enjoyed the way scenes are shot throughout the film and the soundtrack is superb. I also enjoyed the growth of the character’s throughout the film. I expected them to be pretty black and white, however they’re a lot more human and the way Mr. Grey starts to change is interesting. Overall Fifty Shades of Grey was more enjoyable than I expected it to be.


I’m still alive, I promise! (Persona 4, Shin Megami Tensei IV and more!)

Hey there, haven’t posted a whole lot lately and just wanted to apologize for that. It’s been a busy week and I’ve been getting dragged into a Persona 4 wormhole of sorts lately. I’m enjoying the game a lot on the Playstation TV and have probably spent more time playing it after work than I should.

teddie angry persona 4

I love Teddie’s facial expressions!

I am a bit sad that Persona 4 feels like it’s slowing down a bit now that the game is starting to open up. I miss the fast pace and voice acting of the first few hours. Now all of a sudden most of the dialogue is no longer voice acted and there’s not a whole lot going on. Trying to figure out what to do after school hasn’t really been appealing. I’ve just been doing the first thing available and skipping through dialogue hoping for something cool to happen soon.

I haven’t played any Dying Light since getting sucked into Persona 4, but I hope to spend more time with it this weekend. I’ve played a little Shin Megami Tensei IV and have made some slight progress, but I feel like the game has started to slow down now that I’m in Tokyo and I’m finding it difficult to stay interested.

shin megami tensei iv angel transform

I have had The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds sitting around for a few weeks and haven’t gotten around to trying it out yet. I also have barely put any time into Fantasy Life, and my town in Animal Crossing is probably burning to the ground right about now.

drinking surge

Consuming Surge and playing Persona 4 has pretty much been my after work routine this week.

There’s been just so much going on and not enough time to get into any of it (besides Persona) lately. I’m taking three weeks of leave starting on February 28th so hopefully I’ll have some time to make some progress on a whole list of things (I really should finish Dragon Age!).

Hopefully I’ll be able to post a few things this weekend! Don’t hate me, okay?

See you soon!

Teddie fo sho persona 4


First day with the Samsung Galaxy Gear S

I was browsing Best Buy yesterday and was pondering picking up a Galaxy Gear 2 Neo when I came across the Samsung booth and saw the Galaxy Gear S for the first time. I was immediately in love with the design and screen quality and knew this was the watch I was going to leave the store with.

galaxy gear s

I didn’t know much about the Gear S at all, and was surprised to discover that in a sense it is a completely separate smartphone. What I mean is, the Galaxy Gear S has its own phone number and data connection and can function completely on its own when you’re away from your phone. You can also set up call forwarding, so that if you don’t initially answer a call on your phone it will be redirected to your watch. It may also come in useful in a pinch if your phone dies and you need to send a quick message or make a call.

galaxy gear s menu

There’s a lot I love about the Galaxy Gear S already. I love being able to read my phone’s messages and notifications on my wrist without ever having to reach for my phone. I found this feature appealing while at a casual lunch yesterday. I could just glance down at my watch and read a message without interrupting conversation or looking away for a significant amount of time.

galaxy gear s messages

I also found the on screen keyboard easy enough to use which was surprising. I didn’t expect it to work very well on such a small screen, but it is certainly functional.

galaxy gear s keyboard

I also love how the watch automatically displays the time when you lift your wrist. I know it seems silly, but being able to glance at the time without having to push a button on my phone is quite convenient.

galaxy gear s time

I’ve also enjoyed using some of the apps available for the device.
The weather display:

galaxy gear s weather


galaxy gear s CNN
galaxy gear s CNN

galaxy gear s calculator

The media control lets you navigate the songs playing on your phone (this will be great while running!):
galaxy gear s media control

The S Health functionality is one of the device’s most appealing features to me. It’ll track your steps, heart rate, calories burned (based off of steps taken / activity), sleep and the UV index when you’re outside.

galaxy gear s health

To use the sleep tracker you have to first tell the device you’re going to sleep and then it’ll begin tracking. It was interesting to see just how restful I was while taking a nap earlier (I was 89% motionless over 4 hours and slept for three and a half hours.
galaxy gear s health sleep

The watch will vibrate and notify you if you’ve been too inactive over an hour long period which can be a nice motivator to get up and move. When this happens it’ll show you how many steps you’ve taken during the day and your progress toward your goal.

The Galaxy Gear S is $199 with a 2 year contract, and does require a data plan. I have AT&T and upon adding the watch to my account I had to switch from the 5GB data pro plan to a 6GB data share plan. As far as I can tell, this actually made my monthly bill cheaper, but I’ll have to wait until I’m billed for the first time to know for sure. I also now qualify for rollover data which is pretty cool!

If you don’t want to be locked in on a contract you can purchase the device for $329.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask them in the comments!



amazon prime pantry box

Surge (the late 90’s to early 2000’s soft drink) has been back since the Fall of 2014, but it’s only today that I’ve managed to get my hands on some. For quite awhile when I’ve checked Amazon the stock was low and the prices were skyrocketing (as much as $40 for a 12 pack) which kept me from ever ordering any. However, now that I have Amazon Prime, I was able to order two cases and throw them in a Prime Pantry for around $30.

Prime Pantry is a service that charges a flat $5.99 shipping fee for whatever you can fit in the box (for example, the 12-pack of Surge takes up 30% of a 45 pound box).

surge prime pantry

This was the first time I’ve used Prime Pantry and it was incredibly easy and pretty convenient. The box shipped quickly and arrived within a week of placing my order. The box was packed neatly and everything arrived intact.

So, just how was it to taste Surge for the first time in over 10 years? It was nostalgic, that’s for sure. From the instant I cracked open the can I was brought back to the days of all night Goldeneye sessions on the N64, stacking an unhealthy amount of cans as the nights wore on.

I’m glad Surge is back. Maybe someday we’ll see the return of my all time favorite soda, Pepsi Blue or heck, let’s bring back Vault (the red variety!) while we’re at it!


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Watch on Netflix: Iliza Shlesinger: Freezing Hot

iliza schlesinger freezing hot

Last weekend we watched Iliza Shlesinger’s Netflix exclusive comedy special, Freezing Hot. I loved her War Paint special and Freezing Hot is just as great. Iliza is smart, clever, original and outrageously funny! There isn’t a dull moment, and I was left wanting more.

Luckily there’s a great way to get more Iliza Shlesinger in the way of her weekly podcast, Truth and Iliza. There are currently 24 episodes on iTunes featuring guests such as Joe Rogan, Bob Saget, Diablo Cody and Jay Leno. I’m looking forward to adding it to my podcast feed and going back and listening.

truth and iliza

I highly recommend watching Freezing Hot if you’re in the mood for some great stand up comedy.


RISK is back (Xbox One)

RISK Xbox One

Back in December RISK was posted on the Xbox One store and shortly after pulled from sale. It was mistakenly listed for sale (alongside Trivial Pursuit) and quickly pulled alongside a note saying it’s official release would be expected in early 2015.

Well this time it looks like RISK is here to stay. You can pick it up for $14.99. I’m probably going to end up purchasing it, but until then have any of you played it? What do you think of it? I’m somewhat torn on the price. I feel like $9.99 might be a more appropriate price, but maybe there’s enough content to justify it.

Recently watched: Guardians of the Galaxy


Yesterday evening we finished watching Guardians of the Galaxy. I knew absolutely nothing about the Guardians of the Galaxy comics going into the movie, and despite all the hype I hadn’t been very interested in seeing the film. I usually love the Marvel movies, but for whatever reason Guardians never caught my attention.

I think part of it was that the film seemed a little cartoony and too caught up in trying to be funny. Most of the Marvel films have a pretty decent and often self aware sense of humor, however the trailer made it seem like Guardians was going to take it a little too far.

Overall the movie was enjoyable, and it definitely has nice scenery and special effects that stand out on Blu Ray, however I couldn’t really get on board with the humor. Sure it was funny for the first few jokes, but after awhile it just felt like it was trying too hard. That said, I think Vanessa enjoyed it more than I did so maybe I just wasn’t approaching the film with the right attitude.

Guardians is certainly of a different tone than most of the Marvel movies, but maybe that isn’t such a bad thing. It isn’t quite as predictable as other comic book films, and the characters are unique and fresh. Bautista plays his role especially well, and I was surprised by the quality of his character. Groot confuses me, but I feel like he provided the best comedic relief in the film. Rocket Raccoon started out as an enjoyable character, however I feel like his jokes came off a little forced toward the end of the film.

Ultimately I enjoyed the experience of Guardians of the Galaxy, especially the colorful visuals and special effects. I’m interested to see how the story further unfolds, as we’re assured in the end, that the Guardians will return.