31 October 2014

Seven levels in ten days

I made level 7 in ten days. Level 8 will require 600,000 APs and that is the AP equivalent of going from level 1 to 7.

That seems somewhat insurmountable. And that would require twenty days or more given that the double AP period runs out on 15th November.

I don't want to play intensely for twenty days. I think from now on, it will be a case of opportunistic capturing of portals and placing resonators, only when it is convenient and when I am free. I will stick to the game of course.

It is a good game, I would recommend it to my friends.

My in-game name is shyuechou as can be seen from the screen capture. If you do want to play with me, I am on the Enlightened side.

30 October 2014

Enough of these games! Ugh.

Civilization V and what not

I will be removing Imperium Romanum, Grand Ages: Rome from my computer. They will not make a good expenditure of my time. There are other Roman-themed city building and empire building titles out there that are much better.

Last night, I gave Civilization V, spelt with a 'z' because it is American, a try for about two hours or so. It was not addicting but compelling in the sense that one wants to see various tasks completed only to find that it doesn't really do much, there is little payoff despite the promise of one. The game play is fundamentally not very different from the first installment which I played many years ago, likewise the subsequent ones. Overhyped and overrated. The graphics of the individual units and terrain were polished and well done, it was a pleasure to behold. I will be uninstalling this from my machine soon. I may give it a second look some time but the fact is that a simple game is too time-consuming for what it is. No thanks.

Ingress with consequences

Playing Ingress means that one switches on one's GPS almost all the time. What this means is that one's location data is fed to Niantic Labs which in essence is owned by Google.

Playing Ingress is also a massive drain on the battery power. The constant and intense usage probably reduces the battery's lifespan greatly.

However, I am in awe of the enthusiasm and amount of effort exhibited by many hardcore players. Haha. A good game but not necessarily better than any of the A-list titles out there.

Walking with Ingress

Ingress does not increase the amount of walking that I do. For those who are sedentary, it can be of a benefit.

For me, I walk between over 20 km per weekend and run and walk during the week, I find that my amount of walking actually lessened considerably when I have Ingress with me. Walking with Ingress means that I would have to slow my stride down.

Hacking and deploying resonators do not take much time but establishing links take a fair bit longer.

I am within 100,000 APs of level 7 now. I was thinking of slowing down when I hit level 8 but I am getting bored. I will attain level 7 and let it be casual.
I need to remind myself to go to bed and not want to finish that last sketch at 1:45 am.

The sketch can wait.

A fistful of games

I have a backlog of over three hundred unplayed computer games. I do not suppose that I would ever be playing the vast bulk of them.

I had bought a large number during the Steam sales with discounts up to 80 to 90%. Paying $2.00 or less for a game is painless. On average, I pay between $5.00 to $10.00 per game.

Over the weekend, I played a bit of Supreme Commander 2 which was a simplified game as compared to its illustrious predecessor. The gameplay was pretty much the game and the graphics likewise. It was a good game and it was satisfying after a long day at work. I had set the parameters so that the game was a short half an hour to an hour skirmish. That would be enough.

I have always felt that the Supreme Commander games could have more varied and imaginative maps. The oddly symmetrical maps, yes, it was probably for game balance, appeared sparse and bland, there was no feel nor atmosphere.

In a way, the Supreme Commander games had reminded me of an old favourite, the Total Annihilation games that I had enjoyed then. It brought back memories of the Dark Reign games as well.


I had explored Imperium Romanum and Grand Ages: Rome. The latter was apparently a sequel to the former. I had enjoyed Roman building games in the past but these two were lacking to say the least. The interface of both games was a hindrance to gameplay. I spent an hour on them.

I had also tried Tropico 3 and Tropico 4 for about half an hour and they were unsatisfying. The interface of both games were clumsy and annoying. I would soon be removing them from my computer.

I have no regret regarding the unplayed games. There is much to do and experience. Games are but a facet of life.

29 October 2014


Ingress is an augmented-reality game from Niantic Labs, a startup embedded with Google. Ingress is a real life capture the flag game buttressed by the usage of GPS and a database to overlay a physical landscape spanning the globe. It is played with a mobile phone with GPS and mobile data enabled.

I started Ingress on a Tuesday, 21st October 2014. The game has been around since beta since two years ago. I had no awareness of its existence.

Kun Rong had asked that I join him and thus, I did.

In a week, I managed to make enough APs to go from level 1 to level 6. My objective is to reach level 8 fast and then just play it casually.

Has the game been fun? Yes, it has in some ways, not groundbreaking but something well-executed.
I am at my 50th ink drawing this month, I will go back and count. I do want to know how many I did for September and August.

27 October 2014

The two upcoming films that I have an interest in watching are Fury and Interstellar.
The weekend was too short, I had wished it was longer.

Gone Girl

I had thought that Gone Girl would be an emotional family drama but it had turned out to be a bewildering story with numerous plot twists in the vein of a Hitchcock film from the sixties. It was compelling and disturbing. A worthwhile film. Recommended.

21 October 2014

Planet Hollywood

Do you remember eating at Planet Hollywood? It was a big thing in the mid-nineties.

I remember visiting the one at Liat Towers. Planet Hollywood has seen a massive decline. In its heyday, Planet Hollywood has close to a hundred restaurants around the world. Presently, it has eight. It has gone through two bankruptcies, it has seen its share price decline to US$1.00 from US$32.00 in 1999.

The theme restaurant craze was over by 2000.

18 October 2014

16 October 2014


I think I prefer the rougher, grained texture of the Simply Sketchbook from Daler-Rowney over the Monologue sketchbook.

These are, of course, inexpensive sketchbooks.

15 October 2014

Of sketchbooks and loose sheets of paper

After completing two pieces in my Monologue sketchbook, I am reminded of why I generally prefer to draw on loose sheets of paper. There is less constriction.

Clan Of Xymox - Emily (Contrast Remix)

Of the selection at the library

I have come to the realisation that the library has not got most of the books that I want to borrow and read.

Occasionally, I would borrow a forgettable bestseller for a change of pace, otherwise, it simply is limited.

The reference library is better but the books cannot be taken out. Oh well.
I sleep far too late. I need to steel myself and sleep early.

14 October 2014

Drawing on a table

I am finally drawing on a proper table instead of drawing while lying in bed like I usually do.

Other than the drone of the aircon, it is silent. Perfect.
Exercise, however minimal, should do me some good, possibly a long walk.
I can't believe how tired I was yesterday. I need a means to fight off this Monday night tiredness.

13 October 2014

I need focus.

I did a fair bit today, in fact, quite a lot. However, there is still lots more to do, more useful tasks.

Plants vs Zombies

Plants vs Zombies is a game severely lacking in fun value, lacking tension. It appears to have been designed as something to pass the time, probably perfect for those who want time-wasters on mobiles while on the bus or train.

Plants vs Zombies was a bore when I first played it a long time ago. I played it again for a short while yesterday and it is still a bore.

Little things

I spent a lovely evening with Sweetie at Holland Village. We had dinner at a quiet Italian restaurant that had obviously seen better times in the past.

It was a quiet moment to be cherished.

10 October 2014

08 October 2014

I ran 5.2 km in the 33.5 degree heat yesterday. I could feel my burning throat late at night. I had breathed through the mouth when I ran.

07 October 2014

The haze has hit psi 147 or so yesterday. It has reached a tolerable 83 earlier today.

It looks like it is possible to go running this evening. I need to keep fit.
I can't wait to see Sweetie!
Sweetie and I had a wonderful weekend of exploration, shopping, Indian food and more. I love Sweetie!

01 October 2014

Alphaville - Forever Young (Special Dance Mix) (1985) (Audio)

It does look like I would be visiting the supermarket to buy more vegetables today. Broccoli, celery and more. I had bought baby spinach, turkey and two types of fishes yesterday.
Sweetie and I had fun at tea on Saturday afternoon. This was followed by a nice dinner at a cosy Italian establishment.