Season’s Greetings

I have become one with the sofa. The blanket is my roof. Pillows are my ground. Comics are my food. I have become one with the sofa.

This is the state I’m in after having survived both the “academic” stress of 2015 and the stress of having to deal with many people many days in succession because the holidays are finally here, and holidays are family time. Now I can take the time to write down the three amazing things/occasions that happened in the last couple of days and that I don’t want to forget.

My birthday – the 23rd this year – was easily the most awesome so far. Unfortunately I had to study for an exam on the next day, so I had a quiet (and decidedly private) party with a bottle of beer and a cupcake with a candle in it. Despite my intention of staying away from the computer that evening I couldn’t resist and log in to get myself a nexu companion. 8 million credits was a good deal in my opinion, not least because I’m having a blast with this little guy. His unofficial (read: not RP-relevant) name is Hairball. He can preen himself and play dead. Wow. As an avid devourer of everything (or should I say everyone?) he and his mistress slay on their path to glory he makes for an appropriate substitution until her beloved Khem finally returns. Whenever that will be. Assuming I still care at that point.

preen

play-dead-2

There are some things that could be added or changed to make the new companions even better though:

  • Proper pathing in cutscenes. Come on BW, you can’t be serious with this. Your sloppiness is starting to wear my patience thin. Also, give him a spot on the ship please.
  • More ways to interact with the companion, not only expanding the range of “trick” abilities (which I like a ton) but also add some, I don’t know, ship or stronghold specific ones. Play catch, pet, train, something along those lines… maybe even in the form of cutscenes?
  • Appearance customization like every other companion. In the case of the nexu I imagine nothing drastic; maybe slight pattern or fur colour variations, or more or less spikes on the back – just to add a bit diversity, but within a sensible threshold.
  • The option set a name for it, but one which is only visible to the respective player.
swtor 2015-12-22 01-27-50-14
“He is very well behaved.”
swtor 2015-12-22 01-27-59-76
“Of course he is, I handraised and trained him myself. Why do you ask?”
swtor 2015-12-22 01-17-08-08
Do as the lady says or the nexu might get a taste of you.
swtor 2015-12-22 00-22-29-31
Such a goofball.

That was the gift I bought for myself, but there’s another one that deserves a mention here.

Screenshot_2015-12-14-01-07-12
Rad art deserves a special place.

I love everything about this. Not only is it a) an awesome way to say happy birthday to someone, b) I’ve been wanting to commission this exact artist for some time now and c) they captured Serene perfectly despite not knowing anything about her. Her tall, gaunt and slightly androgynous appearance comes very close to the image I have in mind. I was so excited I couldn’t sleep for an hour despite having to get up four hours later. Thanks, Nimz. While I was too busy worrying about the exact look of her tattoos and armor you just went for it and it turned out great.

My birthday week continued with a party on Tuesday at a friend’s place and, most importantly, with a trip to the cinema (all friends included) on Thursday to watch The Force Awakens in the original version. Naturally, I went there dressed up as a Twi’lek.

cinema twilek 1
Nothing comes between me and my popcorn.
cinema twilek 2
Bathrobes are the latest fashion I guess?

The movie itself, while visually stunning, left me with mixed feelings.

(Highlight the following part to read it, and beware of possible spoilers.)

It undoubtedly was a good way to introduce a new generation of fans to a new generation of Star Wars characters – some of which set very important precedents. Rey, a young woman who represents everything that was awesome about the original trio, is the one that got me excited the most. She is the most relatable of all to me – the power fantasy I needed. I also loved how they played with 3D to make the visuals even more awesome, something which not many “traditional” movies pulled off nicely in the past. Story-wise, I’m conflicted. While the first third of the film got me really interested, that interest waned pretty quickly the longer it took. The humour was too much. I liked all those little scenes and comments themselves a lot, but taken together they sucked all sense of urgency or importance out of it. The fact that they seriously presented us with a third Death Star³, which the good guys blew up like they always blow those things up, didn’t help. The First Order is as dumb as the Empire was, yay for that. And why does Snape Junior, err, Ben look nothing like his parents? Like, NOTHING. And he is trained by someone that looks like Giga-Gollum. And oh, there is this map that has a hole and R2 doesn’t show up the whole movie but suddenly he does and he has the rest of his map and oh there is Luke? That went down too fast for my taste. Again, it didn’t feel as important as it should have felt to me.

I don’t know, my depression probably also plays a big part in this emotionlessness that I felt afterwards. Everything else than went around in my head is covered in this article.

Props to them for comparing Snork to Plagueis. That was the second thought that came to my mind after Giga-Gollum. Darth Plagueis is my absolute favourite Star Wars novel (because he is A LOT like Serene and I love it) and I’d curl up on the floor and cry if he makes a canon-appearance. Snork doesn’t really look like a Muun, though. Well, a disfigured one perhaps?

Edit: I watched it a second time and like it much better now. The beginning and the end are really good, but the middle part still feels awkwardly cobbled together. There were so many whys that popped up in my head, and not the kind of whys that can be answered in the following movies. Anyway, TFA is the movie we all needed and deserved and I’m very much looking forward to the rest of the trilogy as well as the spin-offs. Rogue One. My heartrate goes up only thinking about it.

The final thing on my list: my christmas presents. Not much to say here. My family knows me and I love them for it.

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drool

I wish all of you peaceful holidays! May you get all the rest you need.

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Published by

sally e. goldfinch

Level 24 biologist. Has a weakness for non-humans, beer and voices lower than a 100 Hertz.

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