Why I Feel Everyone Should Read

This post will cover the reading of fictional and non-fictional books and novels! A little bit about my reading, I started going out of my way to purchase and borrow books when I was in middle school, I used to read A LOT of Goosebumps books! They used to scare the shit out of me whilst entertaining me as well. I never thought I could ever get any entertainment from pages filled with words but I have never been so wrong, this is coming from someone who was raised with films, TV programmes and video games. Now lets fast forward to around 2015, I was so bored one weekend so I decided to pick up one of my brothers books. It is called ‘The Iceman’, it is a autobiography of the MMA legend Chuck Liddell. I was hooked from the start, I went on to read Brock Lesners autobiography not long after. About a month passed after putting down the autobiography’s and a mate of mine lent me a copy of Dragonlance: Dragons Of Autumn Twilight. This led me to owning 6 Dragonlance books and loving each and every one of them!

I met a women about 17 months ago, who I am lucky to call my girlfriend. She is a keen bookworm so on the second date I brought about 30 quid worth of books (not to impress her as she says to this day, but because she made me interested in reading again!) I have made it my goal this year to read all of those books including one she has written herself! I am nearing the end of her book, and loving it. Her book is called The Young Volcanoes Of Tenemere and you can find her and her book on Wattpad here -https://www.wattpad.com/user/TessBurton

So, why do I feel everyone should read? It is an escape from reality. For that simple reason I feel everyone should pick up a book and get stuck in, we all have problems (work, family, friends) and it doesn’t hurt to just escape and forget about all of those problems even if its just for 1 hour every day. It also gets the brain stimulated and you would be surprised how attached you can get to the characters in a story, without even knowing what they look like by sight! If you are a writer, you can literally create anything you can imagine, there are countless things you can read and write about! Let your imagination run wild, pick up a book, even write one yourself! Plus, if you find it hard to sleep at night, cup of camomile tea and an hour of reading will literally get you dozing off, I do it every night and it never fails me.

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Martial Arts, What It Can Do For You!

When people think of Martial Arts, they think of people like Bruce Lee, Jean Claude Van Damme etc…these people have been very successful in their chosen arts and have made it to the big screen through acting. But what about the average person, the one who does a 9-5 job and trains a few times a week in their free time to let off some steam and get some exercise in. I used to be one of these people!

I started off in Judo, training twice a week at a small hut. The dojo was pretty popular, having been around since the 80’s. Twice a week I would warm up doing break falls, stretching and going over basic movement to set up sweeps and throws. At first I loved it, sometimes I would get a good throw or a sweep in during regular sparring. Being about 6ft 3 and 24 stone at the time I was slow, sluggish and although my hips were powerful it was difficult for me to get into the right position to use leverage to throw people over. But I still loved it, the feeling I got when the rare few times I did get a throw! I found the fat literally dripping off of me, my weight was going down from the intense exercise and small changes made to my diet, but most of all, I felt my confidence rise. I would walk down the street with my head held high and I had that ‘I don’t give a shit what people think about me’ attitude.

I found that my confidence hit a low point after about 8 months of regular training, it became obvious that I was the guy everyone wanted to spar with, including a few black belts. They would throw me around like a rag doll and I did not feel like I was learning anything new. Now you are probably reading this and thinking ‘God you are a bitch, that is how you learn and develop a new skill!’. Perhaps you are right, I was being a little bitch! But my mindset had completely changed and it was not long until I stopped training and went back to my eating habits, everything went back to what it was very quickly. My weight went back up to what it was when I first started and my confidence went back down.

Lets fast forward about 1 year later. I left college and started my first job, during my last year of college I hit the gym hard and managed to drop about 5 stone! I felt like a new man and I wanted to try my hand at the Martial Arts again, I found a Muay Thai gym not far from the office so I signed up. I was a big MMA fan at this point and my hero was Mirko Cro Cop. A Croatian kickboxer that went into MMA. Being a south paw myself, I wanted to kick like the legend and my hero. A couple of months went by with regular training and I felt some more weight come off, the gym was (and still is) an amazing place to train. The coaches are helpful and friendly and everyone in there wants to train and develop.  I noticed the gym was also teaching BJJ classes, with a very good black belt instructor, a European gold medallist. Why the hell not I thought. Lets do a class and see how it goes, I have my old Judo GI so I can just use that! I thought it would be pretty much the same as Judo but I was wrong…this art specialises on the ground work, from being on your back to being on top. Throws and sweeps are also taught but it is mainly a ground Martial Art.

I instantly fell in love with it, the coach is very friendly and so helpful. I found I would be slowly walked through movements and technique and not thrown around like a rag doll like my previous experience in grappling. I got the bug and trained as much as I could, even stopping my Muay Thai training to do more BJJ! After about 2-3 months of training, an inter-club competition came up, I messaged my instructor on Facebook to ask if I could do it, he was more than happy to put me forward! I registered and began training a little bit more to prepare for the competition. Now at this point, I was around 17 stone. Still a big guy, I knew I would be against the larger man like myself. Until I was faced with my opponent, in his spare time he trained BJJ as a bit of extra fitness, as a job he is a personal trainer but he is also a fucking MONSTER of a man. He is a bodybuilder, and a big one at that. Needless to say, I was shitting myself, but hey, its my first competition. The fight went ahead and I found myself wrapping in an armbar, I tried to roll out of it but ended up going more deeper into the lock, I was forced to tap out. I felt a bit silly, thinking to myself how I could have done better. But my instructor and team mates patted me on the back and told me it was my first fight, I will get better!

A few months later I signed up for another competition, I went in with my head held high. I had two fights that day, I managed to win both of them! I can still remember my team cheering for me and my coaches Scottish accent yelling instructions,  I struck gold and it was the greatest feeling I had ever had. With the help from my fellow team mates and my coach I went on to doing more and more competitions, not always winning the gold but I was coming home with medals! After a couple of years I gained my blue belt, an amazing moment for me. Unfortunately I did the thing I was scared of doing, I stopped training. I let life get me down and stopped doing the one thing I loved. I trained on occasion, even doing a couple of competitions. But I did not train properly for them, on my last competition, I managed to get injured. This was through no fault of the gym, or even the guy I was fighting at the time. This was my own fault, I slacked in training and lost my drive. After recovering from the injury I went to training once in a blue moon, still couldn’t get that bug back, I decided about a year ago to stop altogether, get my life back on track before jumping into the arts again. After writing this post, it has definitely driven me to start again!

That is my story on my experience with Martial Arts, I felt like a part of a family. I did things I did not know I could ever do and now I miss it more than ever! If you are thinking about doing it yourself, contact your local gym/dojo, it doesn’t matter what style of Martial Arts it is, if you find a great training facility like I did then you are in for an amazing journey. I have also found it is never too late to start, if you are 18 or 80. Give it a try, I do not think you will regret it!

Now that I have got this out of my head and in front of me through a blog post, I feel so motivated to go and start this journey again, it has to be done! Training with my mates was the happiest feeling I had ever had, now I think its time to go back and do it again…

Guild Wars 2 Review

Introduction

So my review on the MMORPG that is Guild Wars 2, I shall be referring to it as GW2 from here because yes, I am a lazy fucker! GW2 was released in 2012 and it is the second instalment (durps!) of the Guild Wars video games. After playing a character to level 80 I believe I am qualified to give it a rather basic review (like all of my reviews thus far) just to give you an idea of the game before purchasing it! The game currently has two expansions (Hearts Of Thorns and Path Of Fire). It is a free to play game meaning you only have to buy the game once (and the expansions if you want the extra features) and that is that! No subscription fee!!! YAAAAAAAAAAAAY!!!

What The Fuck Do I do?

So WTF do you do on this massive multiplayer video game? You create a fucking character! Just like World Of Warcraft you create a character (otherwise known as a Toon) and you level it up to the max level. After that, its up to you! There is World PvP, battlegrounds, dungeons etc… there are 5 races to choose from –

  • Sylvari
  • Asura
  • Human
  • Charr
  • Norn

After choosing your race, one must choose a class! The classes are –

  • Guardian
  • Renevant
  • Warrior
  • Engineer
  • Elementalist
  • Mesmer
  • Ranger
  • Theif
  • Necromancer

Each class has different abilities! When you are creating a character you choose different answers to different scenarios, upon completing the scenarios you are thrown into the GW2 world to begin your adventure! Your main story line quests are dependant on the answers you gave to each scenario whilst creating your toon. I myself find this amazing, the game never gets boring with a new character creation, you literally get your very own story!

The Combat

I had to make a completely separate section to cover the combat in this game. So, say you chose a mighty Warrior, you want to gorilla fuck the shit out of your enemies (not literally…). Well you can, but what if you fancy a change of pace…maybe use a bow? As a Warrior?? Fuck off Beast! I shit you not, you can equip other weapons, and you will get a completely new skill set. So you want to wield a warhammer? Thats great, fancy switching to a longbow? No problem! Maybe even a rifle? Here ya go! New skills! Also, it is all dependant on your characters class, a long bow for the Warrior has completely different abilities to a long bow on a Ranger. This gives the game a massive one up over the other MMORPGS out there, you have real class tactics!

The Quest

Unlike other MMO’s out there, quests on GW2 are ‘Hearts’. They will appear in multiple places in each area of the game and you need to stay in there zone radius to fill up the heart to complete the quest. To fill up the heart it takes doing multiple tasks, to killing enemies to catching bunnies! This is a great way to quest, it mixes up the tasks you need to do. Once completed you will get your exp and currency, there is no backtracking to quest givers to hand in. This game also encourages you to explore each zone, giving you massive bonus exp and loot for each zone you discover!

Should You Get This Game?

In short, yes…yes you should! If you are a keen MMORPG player and you love the feel of adventure then this game should be in your possession. Its a one off charge and nu subscription fee. There is massive class/character customisation and a massive world for you to explore, what else can you ask for? Check out some more, in-depth reviews…look at some game play on ze You Tubes! But for fuck sakes, buy this game!

Rating

Solid 5/5 from me. No subscription fee, massive world to explore, great world events, fun quests and levelling system! You can’t ask for much more, I have yet to find myself bored on this game. Get stuck in guys, you will not regret it.

World Of Warcraft Review

An Introduction

If you have not been living under a rock for the past 14 years then you have probably heard of the MMORPG that took the gaming world by storm called World Of Warcraft. World Of Warcraft, or commonly known as ‘WoW’ is a massive multiplayer online role playing game set in the world of Azeroth where the two different factions Horde, and Alliance are at constant war with each other. The game now has 6 expansions and a 7th coming out this year, each expansion continues the lore within the game raising the level cap and creating new quests and overall gaming content to keep the players going. This is a subscription based game paying £8.99 per month (or $15 per month for US players).

The Quest

The aim of this game is to create a character, either Horde or Alliance. Alliance has the following races –

  1. Human
  2. Dwarf
  3. Night Elf
  4. Gnome
  5. Worgen
  6. Dreanei

The Horde have these following races to choose from –

  1. Orc
  2. Goblin
  3. Undead
  4. Tauren
  5. Blood Elf
  6. Troll

There is also a race called Pandaren, which is started as a mutual race. As far as I know you can choose between Horde and Alliance at a certain level with this race. Now you choose a class to go with your chosen character race, the classes are –

  1. Warrior
  2. Paladin
  3. Hunter
  4. Rogue
  5. Mage
  6. Priest
  7. Warlock
  8. Shaman
  9. Death Knight
  10. Monk
  11. Demon Hunter

The Death Knight class has a automatic start point of level 55 (Sorry if this is not right, it has been a while since I played xD) as it is known as a ‘hero class’. After creating your character the aim is to gain experience points to level up! This can be done by grinding out quests or doing dungeons with a party of 5 players. Once you hit the level cap, then you reach end game content, then you can continue doing quests and earning achievements if thats how you like to play the game or you can do raiding, taking on world bosses in a dungeon environment. These raids are best done with guild mates (an in-game clan) and it can take up to 20 players to join. There is also end game PvP, this is done in either Battlegrounds or Arenas.

Should I Get This Game?

I would highly advise anyone thinking of purchasing this game to try the free trial found on battle nets website. It gives you a good feel to the game and you will know if you want to purchase it with your hard earnt money or not. This is just a very basic review of the game, I have not played the game in about a year or so, I just cant justify paying almost a tenner a month for a game when there are other games out there that are just as fun with no subscription fee (I shall be covering one of these games very soon!). But hey, that is just my opinion, I am in no way slagging this game off. I have been a player since 2005 and I have logged many fun filled hours on it! If I could justify the subscription fee then you could bet I would still be a keen player. Saying that….I will most likely be buying the new expansion at some point, Blizzard are said to be bringing back ‘Vanilla’ servers, which is the version of the game when it was first released. I love a bit of nostalgia and would love to try that out!

Rating

I shall give this game a 3/5 rating. The subscription fee is a bit of a bummer and I do not feel that the game is getting enough attention from its creators. I feel the game could have a lot more work done to it to make it that much funner! But please, do not let this rating put you off trying it. Like I said before, get on Battle Net and download the free trial, see for yourself if its worth the cash!

 

PUBG Review

An Introduction

Had a long day at work? Need to let off some steam? Got Facebook messages asking where you are and to log on Teamspeak with the squad? Chances are you are a PUBG player. Before purchasing this game I read some reviews, I noticed the words ‘adrenaline rush’ being used in most reviews. “How the hell can a video game give an adrenaline rush?” I asked myself, then after purchasing this game and getting my first chicken dinner kill (thanks to Wolf) I discovered it. My hands were shaking, heart was pounding, found myself with a slight semi and the need for a cigarette! Never in my life have I felt such a rush, not just in a video game, but in any activity. This is coming from a man that used to take part in BJJ competitions on a regular basis. Not even slamming an opponent to the mat and wrenching his shoulder towards breaking point gave me this feeling, and for a game to do that to me tells me this game is AMAZING!

What IS The Mission?

The aim to this game is quite simple. You land on an island with other players with nothing…thats right, NOTHING! You explore the island to find loot (weapons, body armour, bandages etc) and you need to kill the other players. If you go into the game with a friend then you play against other duo teams, with three players its classed as a ‘squad’ and you face other squads with teams of three or fours. That is it, simple right? Nope! The game is incredibly challenging and relies on a mixture of teamwork communication (Fucking JOHN!) and of course a good shot with tactics (You the man Wolf!) As the game continues and players start to die then the god awful ‘Zone’ will start to close in on you. Now how is the best way to describe the zone…lets say you are a male escort…stay with me on this…you go to a clients home for ‘work’. Theres a note on the door saying “Come in big boy ;)” you walk in and BAM! The door slam shuts behind you, and there are 4 blokes surrounding you, they look pretty pissed off and they start to slowly but surely close in on you. You are pretty fucked (pardon the pun). Once this blue zone closes in on you it will drain your health, the longer the game goes on the more damaging it becomes and it makes the map very small, meaning you and your team mates are in a small zone with the enemy! Shots will go off, raging team mates will go bonkers on Teamspeak (Kurt), blood will flow and hopefully you will get that sweet sweet ‘Winner Winner Chicken Dinner’ appear on your screen! If not, then you lost…hey, at least you have the adrenaline rush and lazy lob on though :).

Should I Purchase This Game?

If you are reading this and are still in two minds then I suggest you look at some footage on YouTube. The graphics may not be all that great but the game play is awesome. Admittedly they still have some work to do on the game but that means that this already awesome, fun game will only get better with time. The creators are teasing with a possible ‘Zombie Mode’ which I personally would love!

Rating

I will give this game a solid 4/5. Like I said above, the game still needs some work but other than that it is a fun game. Even playing solo against other players is fun as hell! Trust me, take the plunge, get stuck in. You won’t regret it!