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Magfest 2012
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ME 3/Kingdoms of Amalur armor stuff

So there’s this kind of cool dealio happening next week whereby if you play and download the demo for Kingdom’s of Amalur: Reckoning(still a stupid title), then you get cool armor unlocks for Mass Effect 3–much like what they did with the Dead Space 2 armor in Dragon Age 2.

Anyway, even without the armor tie in, it still seems like a good idea to check out the demo for KoA. For one thing, the gameplay looks hella fun, in a sort of Elder Scrolls-meets-Soul Calibur kind of a way. And demo means you get to enjoy that goofiness before committing to buying! Yay! XD

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Magfest

So over the weekend we were at Magfest, a smallish gaming convention out in the DC area (whereby half the weekend was spent going, “Are we in Virginia, DC proper, or Maryland?” –apparently it’s Maryland). It’s kind of a cool con to attend because there’s loads of concerts and really cool games to play–they had several arcade cabinets set up so you could play the Simpsons Arcade game, for instance, and never have to worry about blowing your whole allowance on just getting to stage 3. It’s kind of a bad convention to sell things at, however, mostly because it’s 24 hours so it’s hard to know when exactly to show up/leave the table.

Now I have come to learn that from these 24 hour shows with no set dealer room hours, that usually during the before-noon hours no one’s there–mostly on account of the phenomenon of “sleeping it off” (whatever “it” may be). Brion, however, saw differently, and insisted on getting us all up at the crack of 9 am to get to the show, despite both Sara and myself getting much less than a full night’s sleep. We get to the convention and it looks like the scene of abandoned London from 28 Days Later–nooooo one is there.

Likewise, the coffee shop thing is totally true–it was a weird trick where the sign was hanging up kind of above the art store area (which took up 2 shopfronts), so we assumed that the 2nd door to the art store was the door to the coffee shop. We waited for almost 15 minutes before I noticed some dudes with coffee sitting outside, and they pointed us to the coffee shop…which had its entrance in this weird lil’ walkway thing off the main street. Very annoying! No one keeps Jen from a coffee!

Arty is the really cool dude that runs Sanshee, and unlike all of the rest of us, he seems to actually care about being healthy or whatever. He was describing to us how beautiful the running paths were around the convention center, and Shawn and I just kind of stared at him like we were looking at a unicorn.

And finally, the last panel is completely true. They were showing videos from events from their convention, only they only had like, 3 videos–one of some Japanese guys drumming (which is fine, because amongst the rest of the noise of the convention you can tune it out), one that was just a video of some cosplayers standing around (silent…or at least quiet enough that we couldn’t hear anything), and some chick dressed up as Haruhi singing “Again” by Yui, the first opening to Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. Now don’t get me wrong–I have nothing against the chick singing–I’m sure she did a fine job, it’s just that with all the other noise generated by the convention, all you hear for the first half is “EEEEEEEEEEEEEEE” until you get to the chorus where it becomes recognizable. ….I have never wanted to machete a whole town before more so than sitting there, listening to that song every 7 minutes over the course of an entire weekend. Even having an earbud in to something else didn’t work as I had to keep the other earbud out just in case someone needed something. And then leaving the convention didn’t help because the song….stayed…with me. It haunted my dreams like the sound of drums.

On the plus side, having it be a smaller convention with not a lot of people to sell things to meant I got to actually do some stuff–like play the aformentioned Simpsons Arcade game. Also, Brion played a bunch of Street Fighter 3 and just kind of pwned for around 20 matches in a row against random challengers.

I also played a bunch of Chrono Trigger at the table–though I had played up to the middle of the first future section on a ROM, I think the computer that had all my save data ended up crashing. But thankfully, I have the really wonderfully done DS version that I got for my birthday. Over the course of the con and also the car ride home, I managed to make it to beating the boss to get Masamune, and lordy, even though I don’t think I’m all that far, I can see why this is known as an RPG classic. Everything from the music to the characters is just fantastic, and I love how they’re not afraid to go to make an area that’s quite possibly the most depressing area I’ve ever played in a game ever. And it looks really good on the DS, so if you’re like me and kinda missed out on grabbing it back in the day, do yourself a favor and pick it up immediately.

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