Monday, February 25, 2008

Game Reviews: C&C3 and GRAW2

Here is a review of a couple of new games that I have been playing…

Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars
Product Description
Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars takes you forward in the Command & Conquer universe, where a brief peace ends in a storm of war. The year is 2047 and a massive nuclear fireball explodes in the night sky, marking the dramatic beginning of the Third Tiberium War. With the corrupt substance Tiberium blanketing most of the Earth, the infamous Kane is back to lead his Brotherhood of Nod in a massive assault on the Global Defense Initiative (GDI) and the few remaining livable Blue Zones left on the planet. Only you can stop him. Welcome back, Commander. Build flying battleships, wield the power of terrifying Ion Storms&combine units to form powerful never-before-seen super-units Multiple online game modes, all-new multiplayer maps and fully featured content editor -- go online to see how you stack up in RTS' ultimate forum (Amazon)

Command and Conquer 3 for the Xbox 360. Here is a series that I really loved on the PC. I either have owned or played most of the C&C Series and would like to say that it lived up to my expectations. At first, I was not sure of how the controls were going to play out, given that you use the 360’s controller. (I have only played C&C using a mouse) However, after playing the tutorial, it was relativity easy commanding my units or constructing buildings or units. The graphics were stunning, especially when I zoomed in on a helicopter or a set of units. The cinematic movies are great, which includes both Six and Boomer from Battlestar Galactica. It added so much to the game that I just loved watching the briefings more and more. Good Game and defantany worth a buy.

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2
Product Description
Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2 builds on the events of the first hit game, for an all-new tactical combat experience. In the year 2014, rising conflict between Mexican loyalists and insurgent forces throws Mexico into full-scale civil war. Under the command of Captain Scott Mitchell, the Ghosts are called upon to face an imminent threat to the United States. The fate of two countries now lies in the hands of the Ghosts as they fend off an attack on U.S. soil. Equipped with the most cutting-edge weaponry and technology, the Ghosts must battle on both sides of the border. New battlegrounds (Amazon)

I picked up this one on sale and would like to say that it is worth the money that I paid for it… But,…. The game is okay. Good for a first person shooter, the graphics are just okay, and the AI is not so good. From talking with the EB sales guy, I had high expectations for the game, which it just did not live up to. The AI is just plain dumb and most of the missions are far too easy, even if you have it on a harder setting. The graphics are okay, not as good as Halo or even C&C. I do get to play with a mounted mini-gun and a sniper rifle, which has merit. I have not yet played the multiplayer aspect of it, but I would say that this game is a rental, unless you can pick it up for a bargin.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

A few years older.. I mean days...

Looking back at my previous entry, realizing that it was only a week ago, it sure feels like it was last month. I was talking with a colleague of mine and he was saying how the beginning of the year sure has sucked for him. I was saying it started in December for me and has not stopped as of yet. Well, that is not quite accurate. The whole go-go-go started around July of last year. It just has gotten severely worse over the past couple of months. Maybe it is the cold medicine talking or maybe it is just the fact that I am just tired all of the time, but I sooo want to stop this go-go-go all of the time. But, alas I have to work tomorrow and I am sure that there are 102 items on the "to-do" list that will have to be done by end of day.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Stop the Ride... I want to get OFF!

Currently, I am sitting here half watching the girls in their gymnastics class and the other half checking email and solving problems. Last night I came home about 6'ish, ate, washed the kids, tucked them into bed, cleaned the kitchen and went to bed. Seriously, I was in bed by 9:30. I am getting to work about 7am and not leaving until 5:45pm, every day. It is non-stop from the time I walk in the door until I shut the laptop down to call it a day. And I have to work this weekend... uhhhh...I have had to work two out of the last three weekends. This reminds me of the times at Cori where we were moving the facility from Beaverton to Hillsboro. That was really tough and long. Working long hours and moving at 110% all day used to not effect me as much back then... Of course, I was a bit younger.

The bad thing is that I have so much on my plate, I am starting to miss deadlines. This is really upsetting to me since I am the kind of person who is always early to an event. (Which really pisses my wife off - I like seeing the "20" at the movies"... twice) I am starting to loose track of projects, even though I use SharePoint to track things, and it just seems like there is a lot of hurry up and wait. One of the main reasons for my projects and tasks to be slipping.

Yesterday, I was in my GO-GO-GO mood and then someone pulled the plug on my work. This made we wonder around for a few minutes trying to find out where I need to be shifting my focus. "Hard Reset... Okay... Let's try something else.... Like trouble tickets, yeah..."

I just wish I was able to pass some of the daily crap that has to be done to someone else, so I would have time to focus on the more important tasks at hand.

All I need is some time, money, and effort.

Friday, February 01, 2008

How to Unblock Attachments in Microsoft Outlook 2007

Yesterday I was being very frustrated by Outlook blocking access to attachments. So, I thought that this would be a good post for the new month. How to unblock attachments in Outlook 2007!

Allowing executable extensions give you more freedom but less security (I've seen viruses pass AVs before). I would recommend allowing unsafe attachments just for a specific email, and undoing it after downloading the attachments. Of course make sure the email is from a trusted source and still treat it as if it's a virus by default (i.e. scan it, look for patterns in the email body, etc).

I'm sure you've seen before "Outlook blocked access to the following potentially unsafe attachments: xxx.exe". I found there's very little documentation out there on how to lower the security level or allow a file a know source sent you. You'll find below the registry hack to allow specific file types Outlook blocks by default. There's also a kb article about it and as the article mentions make sure you backup your registry before you start editing it.
Run -> regedit and go to :
1. Backup your registry first. Right click and select Export.
2. Add a new String Value called: Level1Remove

1. Edit it and save the value data to the extension you wish to allow (add a semi-colon delimiter for multiple extensions).
Ex: .bat or .bat;.exe;.scr

1. Restart outlook (no need to restart your computer) !
Here is the KB for some further reading.

Enjoy your new freedom.