Archive | December, 2010

Mana World News: Spawn Party

31 Dec

Almighty Platyna did a late Christmas/New Years event! For those who don’t know, Platyna is the (in)famous admin of TMW. Her havoc in-game was as awesome, chaotic, and just what we needed to get off our lazy asses. These are the screen-shots I managed to take in the crowd of higher-levels.

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(Though, it wasn’t long before we were back to what we were doing, being AFK…)

-Dimond

Recipe #1: Caramel Creme Brulee

30 Dec

I LOVE… I mean… REALLY LOVE angel food cake! Being so fluffy, it really feels like you bit into a piece of heavenly goodness. It takes a lot of egg whites, and only the egg whites! What in the world do you do with yolk? There MUST be some kind of really delicious, easy recipe for egg yolks! Well, according to some, you might as well make a creme brulee. After looking through many recipes on the net, I decided to consult the book, “Bon Appetit Desserts”, and found the letters “Caramel Creme Brulee” in the index. Alas, there are no pictures… No fear, even without trusty pictures, I will manage to get through with my first creme brulee!

Alright, big challenge #1: Separating the egg yolks. Man, the pros make it look so easy. Whether you are using an egg separator, egg shells, or even a funnel (haven’t tried that one yet, let me know how it works out) there is still that evil possibility that your yolks will get into your whites and thus you cannot use your whites to make delicious angel food cupcakes. No! Even if a minuscule amount of egg yolk manages to slip through, game over. Trust me… I know the fate of the whites when whipped with the fearsome yolk!

Challenge #2: Melting the sugar. Harder than it seems when your cream isn’t ready to be poured into the burnt sugar. It didn’t occur to me that a pint is about the same as two cups of cream, so instead of measuring like crazy, (while hot, amber bubbles begin to form rapidly) I could have just poured the pint into the fluid. Luckily the sugar didn’t become too burnt, or else it would’ve had a bitter taste to it. Unless you like it that way, I don’t suggest over cooking the sugar.

Challenge #3: Paying close attention to the directions and not ignoring them. Probably one of things I struggle with most. Never question the recipe! There seems to be some kind of logic to the instructions, despite how it may seem at time. My advice: when making something for the first time it is best to go through the recipe from beginning to end. Make adjustments later depending on the results you get.

After mixing the egg yolk mixture with the caramel creme, all I need to do was put the thick, creamy stuff into the ramekins. Wait a long time, chill it, wait a long time, put a layer of caramelized sugar on the top (I don’t have a torch), not wait a long time, and eat. Next time I’ll probably be a little more successful if I decided to be patient, and maybe listen to the part that says “hot water” or “refrigerate overnight”.

-Dimond

The Mana World

29 Dec

I’ve often played this 2D open source MMORPG called The Mana World. The gameplay itself is not the greatest, but if you are looking for a great community, I think TMW is the best. Go ahead and download this game if you are interested in a social experience. It’s unbalanced though, and you are most likely going to have a hard time trying to get through in the beginning. Mostly it’s grind, grind, and more grinding, but besides that, you can always join the development side of things. I’m sure you’ll be welcome to help this project…then again, maybe not.

For some, it can be hard to be accepted, because you might be dismissed, perhaps quite unreasonably, by one who is considered an official developer. Well screw them, you keep trying! Mere ideas or concepts are always useful, I mean, look at this guy! Pateame resurrected an old concept drawn by Modanung and expanded on it. Concepts are great and I think this thread is a good example of it. As you can see, they’ve made a rough sketch and even used clay as a tool. My advice is to get your ideas out, be open to criticism, and then make the little tweaks/adjustments on your product. Oh, almost forgot to tell you, IT ACTUALLY TAKE SOME HARD WORK!!! (I learned this the hard way).

Look more into this by going to Mana Press, another WordPress blog dedicated to all things “Mana”. In this topic, the author discuses different categories that one can contribute in. Play the game, get involved, and remember to take breaks (very important or you’ll end up getting obsessed, like me). One more thing, WIKIPEDIA IS HELPFUL!

-Dimond