Saturday, July 29, 2017

July hodgepodge

I finally got my first ever Star Wars LEGO sets! I knew I wanted the Millennium Falcon but I also initially wanted an Imperial Shuttle, an X-Wing Fighter, or a Tie Fighter (okay, technically I also wanted the Death Star and a Star Destroyer but those were way beyond my budget). Since I knew I didn't have a lot of space at home to display completed LEGO sets, I decided to stick with the Millennium Falcon only. That is, until I saw a video of the LEGO AT-ST. Since this item isn't as big as the other Star Wars ships, I can surely slot it in somewhere at home. As such, I ended up getting it along with the Millennium Falcon. I haven't had time to build either yet since I am sure that will take time. I can't wait to put them together though. I will post about it once I do.

My new Star Wars LEGO sets

July marks the first time in 2017 that I got to watch two movies in the same month. The first one was Despicable Me 3. I actually enjoyed it more than the 2nd one but the first is still the best one for me. I like the new characters - Balthazar Bratt and Dru - in this third Despicable Me movie and I love how Gru's recently acquired hero/anti-villain mindset is challenged. It's not your most sophisticated animated film but the story moves along quite nicely and it's a lot of fun to watch.

I also got to see Spider-Man: Homecoming. While this is the third incarnation of Spider-Man in the last 15 years (the first version that featured Tobey Maguire came out in 2002), I was still thoroughly entertained. Peter Parker as a character was written quite well in my opinion because the conflicts and challenges he was facing were very high school in nature (e.g. fitting in, making a difference), which make sense given that Peter is supposed to be in his teens. I liked the twists and turns in the film but I have to say that I am not such a big fan of the fact that his suit and his web-shooters were created by Tony Stark. (That is more logical though since a high school kid, even a super genius, would most likely not have the resources nor the equipment to build a Spider-man suit or high-tech web-shooters. Still, I like the idea of Peter Parker having made those himself.)

No month would be complete for me without gaming. In fact, I played games with my friends on two consecutive nights and then again the weekend after. I played some games I had played before, such as Viticulture, Scythe, and Karuba, but I also played several new games. These include: 6 nimmt!, Dice Crawl, Jamaica, and Secret Hitler. Secret Hitler is kind of like Resistance, Avalon, and Ultimate Werewolf in that the liberals have to figure out who the Secret Hitler is while the fascists need to get Hitler elected as Chancellor. I somehow ended up as the Secret Hitler but a key mistake of the liberals early in the game allowed me to get elected Chancellor in the end so the fascists and I won. Aside from Secret Hitler, I also won a few other games: Karuba (twice) and my first ever Jamaica game. I had been losing a lot over the last several months so it was nice to be on the winning end again.

My friends and I also got to play two role-playing games, or RPGs. Both of them were pretty interesting and not too long to play. Odin's Eye is set in space and the players get to build the story based on a premise that is selected at the start of the game. It was a bit hard to play at first since you weren't sure how to make the story progress but once we got the hang of it, it became fast-paced and intense. The other game, Murder Hobos, is a lot lighter despite its name and it focuses on the interactions of the players with each other, depending on which character they play. The key difference of this game from the other RPGs I've played is that you get to play a different character in each round. While the story we built in Murder Hobos wasn't as well-constructed as the one we built for Odin's Eye, it was a lot of fun with many moments of utter hilarity.

A couple of other things. I bought slim jeans for the first time in my life. I was surprised that Old Navy had slim jeans that fit me but their Slim Built-in-Flex Jeans apparently have spandex and this allows the fabric to stretch. I ended up buying 2 pairs of jeans partly because I needed new ones but also because they were on sale. I also went on another trip in the Philippines, this time to Baguio with my friends. I will write about that trip separately.

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