KarmaVixen

KarmaVixen

Superhero mom and massage therapist by day, gamer by night. Somewhere in-between, I also enjoy listening to music, watching movies, tv shows about ghost-hunting, UFOs, and Ancient Alien theories, and creating/designing jewelry. I am loathe to bad grammar skills and I LOVE capturing mullet hairstyles with my camera.

Jul 152012
 

Do you like Legos? Do you like being creative? I would like to bring your attention to the game that has taken the internet and beyond by storm.

Minecraft is an 8-bit style game in which you are given creative control of building anything you can dream up block by block. The game offers anywhere from Peaceful mode, where you can build without interference, to Survival mode, where you have to seek shelter at night from the spiders, creepers, zombies, and others.

Some may wonder what the appeal is. Well, for me, it was facing the challenge of being placed in an environment with nothing to work with other than my hands, and having to mine everything in order to craft tools. These tools aid in building shelter and preparing food. The more I mined, the more creative I could be with my world. There are also other gamers who have existing worlds, brimming with creativity, who allowed me on their server to help build, mine, or simply to get an achievement I needed.

The game was first introduced for PC and became well known with the help of YouTuber, Tobuscus, and has also expanded to xboxLIVE, and now mobile devices.

I enjoy this game. It is WONDERFUL for those of you who may suffer from OCD. Interestingly enough, it also helps me get sleepy. Anyhow, my only complaint is that even with the new update for xboxLIVE a few days ago, there are no female skins for the character, Steve. I have submitted my complaint via Twitter to the web developer. He is @jeb_ if you would like to ask him as well, this being a blog aimed at female gamers. Maybe he would like to answer to all of us as to when we can expect some EQUALITY since we are in the 21st century.

Jul 032012
 

This is me and the love of my life captured gaming a few years ago. We have since upgraded to Turtle Beach headsets so we can hear the bullying loud and clear. In 3D, surround sound. In space. No, not really.

Wow…really, Twitterverse? REALLY?!!

You know, I am so glad I saw the tweet from @MsFuckingMetal bringing to our attention that the title of this blog was a trending topic on Twitter today. I am glad because, as a girl gamer, I have faced my share of adversity in the 3+ years I have committed to a xBox LIVE membership. I have no doubts many of you have experienced the same, which compelled me to want to talk about this stereotype, the treatment of female gamers by many (stupid) male gamers, and other unnecessary bullying going on in the live gaming experience.

First of all, who in the hell thought it amusing or appropriate to start and intentionally perpetuate this stereotype that we female gamers cannot, in fact, game? Seriously? If you come around speakin’ that kind of vernacular to us, be prepared for a verbal (and possibly physical) spanking. Nuff said. If you really believe this preposterous accusation, you have got to be living under a rock. You are also severely unsocialized.

When I initially joined xBox LIVE, my game of choice was Left 4 Dead. It was, and still is, quite popular among gamers, especially since it is a multi-player game. I found myself really discouraged, angry, frustrated, and impatient at the number of times I was instantly kicked out of lobbies. Most of you can identify with that, I am sure. If you cannot, imagine you have a game that you really, REALLY love to play with other people, and you are constantly being kicked out of the lobby. As a result, the time you invested in playing has been cut short and ruined because people have the option to kick you out, and you find it happens repeatedly. It is not fun by any means. For me, it got to the point where I was just hoping the game would start so that I could get some play time in, but a vote to kick me would always appear sooner or later. The reality of it was that I was really damn good at the game, just nobody wanted to give me a chance. I learned not to talk on the mic at all and just hope that my gamer tag went unnoticed just so I could play. It was really demeaning. Occasionally, I would get the jerk who felt compelled to take it to the next level by calling me out and antagonizing me in the lobbies. Those were real winners, let me tell you. Thanks, guys. You really showed me how awesome you were by how low you could cut me down verbally.

The last point I want to hit on here is in regards to the verbal bullying that goes on in the lobbies, in game chat, and through messages. Now that I have been gaming for awhile and have a wonderful group of gamers I hang with nightly, I don’t often experience this type of bullying. However, what really gets my goat more than anything is when a bully targets my boyfriend or friends in a lobby for no reason. These people must have a lot of spare time where they perfect how to bully people and try to humiliate them with some really offensive name-calling. They do this even when young kids are in the lobby! That is a topic for a later blog, by the way. Regardless, the bullying I have witnessed in games is horrible. Just horrible. It is unnecessary, childish, offensive, you name it. Some are used to it, but I still am shocked at the things I will occasionally hear. I have since learned to mute others and the team I am playing against, but it sometimes is not enough.

I would like to learn about your experiences, so please comment. Share your stories about this mundane stereotype against female gamers, bullying experiences over live gaming, anything related to this topic. Thanks, y’all.

-KarmaVixen

Jun 242012
 

With all the encroaching tales of zombie sightings and mauling in the news lately, it only leaves one question: Are you prepared? Probably not AS much as you would like to be, right? Good thing you stopped by, because I want you to be prepared by engaging in my personal favorite games for xbox LIVE.

The Left 4 Dead series is all about surviving the zombie brigades. Left 4 Dead and Left 4 Dead 2 are the two games in this franchise, and both center around 4 survivors trying to make their way to CEDA while encountering the never-ceasing hordes of zombies, special infected, and boss zombies.

In regards to game play, you have the option to play campaign with up to 3 other players, versus mode in a team of 4 versus 4, Scavenge, Survival, and Special Mutation. As survivors in all of these modes, you begin in a safe room/area where you have an array of small arms weapons, melee weapons, and a health kit. Some variations include your choice of power weapons, pipe bomb, Molotov, boomer bile, pills, or adrenaline shots. The objective in most of these game modes, with the exception of Scavenge, is to work with your team in warding off hordes of zombies in order to make it to the next safe room. On the way, you will encounter some form of special infected (pictured above right). Interspersed throughout the campaign and versus modes, you will encounter the boss zombies. These include the Tank or the Witch. The Tank is super powerful and best taken down faster with fire or grenade launcher. Careful to turn your flashlight off and step lightly around the crying Witch, or you will soon be downed and mauled as her victim!

Scavenge mode is my favorite mode of game play. You and your team are playing against another team of 4 infected, and the objective is to get as many gas cans as you can into the generator. These gas cans are spread out over a smaller portion of one of the maps, and each map has 16 gas cans. You can earn a special achievement for collecting all 16!

As an infected player in Versus and Scavenge mode, you will cycle through a potential of 7 special infected, with the Tank in versus mode only. I will briefly explain each. Smoker: Your long tongue reels a survivor in and suffocates them with your putrid zombie smoke. Hunter: You pounce on a survivor and maul them for lots of points. Boomer: You spew your boomer bile (vomit) all over as many survivors as you can, which attracts common zombies to them and helps take them down. Spitter: My personal favorite! From a discreet vantage point, you expectorate your acidic mouth juices to either trap survivors or cause major damage in a tight enclosure. Charger: You must have been a lopsided body-builder before converting to Zombie-ism because your very well-developed arm assists you in charging through the survivors, grabbing one, and smashing the living balls out of them. Jockey: You run and jump on a survivors head, taking them for a ride and separating them from the group to down them. The last is the Tank, who you may get to play in versus mode. You will have the ability to throw major objects at survivors, swat at them to down them quickly, and smash them when they are down. It is best to work with your team to help separate survivors, whilst throwing objects at the survivors to down them.

Look, gals & other folk, you just have to play this game if you want to ensure you are prepared for Zombiepocalypse 2012. This game can be repetitive, but you can always work on your attack strategies as infected, and your short cuts and attack methods as survivors.

I really love these games and have perfect gamer scores in both. You should, too. How else are you going to cut a bitch should a zombie appear? You have to be prepared! So get these games and start practicing. Like, now.