The Force Unleashed

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So I just started playing The Force Unleashed, and I like it so far. I'll track my thoughts here as I go... trying to keep spoilers to a minimum (but no guarantees).

Thoughts so far:

1) Vader is a bad-ass.
2) Love story this quickly? Wow.
3) First level as Starkiller... just the demo. Only with background story.
4) No Force Lightning yet... :(
5) Ah, there's the lightning... I love me some electrocution!
6) Battling Jedis is really fun.
7) And there's a plot twist!
8) I love upgrading my Force powers; improved lightning is just sweet.
9) Die Balrogs!
10) Sarlac? I don't think I should mess with that... oh well!
11) I wish Force Push was stronger damage-wise. It's really useful for managing large crowds (Fable had a move like it which I used a lot too), but just doesn't cause the kind of damage to objects that lightning and saber strikes do. But I suppose that's just a balancing thing.

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Two Years

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Today was a weird day. My really good friend, Courtney, is leaving LA tomorrow. She's going to Africa soon, and will be gone for two years.

Two years is a LONG time, I've come to realize. So many things can happen. She likely won't even have regular internet access during that time, so who knows how often I'll hear from her. Or vice versa, for that matter. So much can change, and it's scary to think that in roughly two weeks, she's gone.

I think back on how much I've changed in my first two years in college, and I can't help but smile as I realize that many of my changes came about in some part due to her. Court was definitely a role model to me last year, and one of my closest friends. It's just weird to think that when she gets back, I'll have changed SO much. But what's even weirder is to think how much she will have changed after two years in the Peace Corps in Africa.

That all said, I know this is something she's passionate about, and I wish her the absolute best of luck out there.

Go get 'em Court. I'll miss you.

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Training

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I've been in training for my job as an RA for the past few days, and it's been quite an interesting experience. I was an RA last year, so this is my second time through the training, and it is very different for me, being a "returner".

I almost feel like I'm learning MORE this year, despite the fact that all of the sessions are almost exactly the same as last year. Last year, there was so much to take in, I could only scratch the surface. I relied on the returners to help me out with stuff I wasn't sure on, and there were definitely mistakes I made. This year however, I find myself being that source of aid to the new RAs, which has helped me immensely. Doing what I can to help them has forced me to look at what I learned more intently, which in turn has made me understand it better. It's similar to tutoring, where when you teach something you already know, you view it in a different way, and understand it better as a result. Though I suppose this shouldn't have surprised me like it did, it definitely caught me off guard. In a good way of course; I feel like I'll be a much stronger RA this year.

The other thing that has been quite different is the staff bonding. Last year, I didn't know anybody on team when I started. So as we went through training, I essentially made 30 new good friends in just a few short weeks. This year however, many of the people on staff are people who I already consider good friends. Some were team members last year, a few were my residents last year, and others were people I'd met already through some venue. So the bonding is quite different. I wouldn't say it's any worse or better, just different. It is slightly off-putting when I start drawing comparisons in my head, as I feel at first like I may not be bonding with this team as well as last year. But I know that isn't the case. I'm just bonding differently.

And if there's one big takeaway from the two-day diversity retreat we just returned from, it's that different is good. I'm definitely feeling good about this year.

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