MMOs Are Dead And VR Will Save Them

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MMOs boomed with the success of World of Warcraft. Every company and their mothers thought they were going to be the next big hit MMO and to this day the corpses of games that tried to fight the monster that is World of Warcraft still litter the fields around the giant beast. Not so giant any more mind you but still a monster. I will also go back to WoW. Like an abused wife, I will always find a way to forgive WoW for what it’s done to me. This is because World of Warcraft is my first true virtual home. It is the familiar safe place that may change here and there but at the end of the day I am always connected to it. If I’m playing it or not. But even I do not feel the urge I once did to go back home like I did many times before.

At the bases of why MMOs are not holding their own any more is due to the players. The players have grown, gamers are older now then they ever have been. They have some variation of school, work, or family they have to deal with. They can’t sit down and level for 3 days of active play time anymore. Being a working photographer who I think has much more free time on his hands than most others, even I have to admit I don’t have the time or patience to level and grind in MMOs. The time to results threshold as been met for me and a lot of people. Why play a MMO everyday and constantly be behind and not have fun when you can play a few games of Hearthstone, League of Legends, or Battlefield? Good or bad matched you get to go to bed feeling like you got some work in vs aimlessly grind a few dungeons with teammates who said nothing the whole time.

The MMO space is excellent. It’s still needed and it’s still good. It’s not Dead it just hasn’t adapted yet. Honestly it might not need too. Maybe we all need to just accept that MMOs might not be for us anymore. The problem with that is MMOs are crazy high budget and if the developers aren’t able to make money then the MMO is done for. So MMOs in theory can’t really be niche. It needs a strong thriving player base to exist in one way or another. Which is why you might notice the past year there are a lot less of them being announced. Most of them being from Asia as well, one of the few places where MMOs still kind of work. So how do we fix this problem? Well we can’t really, not the way it is now. The current model is not what people want anymore and the ones that do want it have options that already exist. If you say you like MMOs and there’s not a single MMO you like on the market right now, well I’m sorry to break it to you but you don’t like MMOs.

Where I think the future of MMOs exist is virtually reality. VR is still young and being watched with a close eye by the world but where I think the medium will thrive is the MMO space. Even back when MMOs were young everyone wished for a VRMMO. From The Matrix to Sword Art Online people have wished for open virtual worlds where we can explore without the limitation of a screen. It doesn’t even have to be a great MMO. I’d drop cash money for a VR rig and any needed upgrades for a half decent VRMMO. I think a lot of people would as a well. At least a lot of people like myself who haven’t leapt in yet. Any day now I’m waiting for the announcement of the first VRMMO. Everything stated above is void for the sake of escapism. The need of exploring a new world as close to reality as possible but with the addition of orcs and demons. I might not have time for MMOs now but for the right VRMMO I would make time.

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Dan The Man App Game Review


Before we get started with the review I just want to let everyone know that I’ll be doing more app review going forward. I’ll be doing at least one a week or more starting with this one. They will not be limited to just games either.

Dan The man is a new game that came out this month(October 2016). I didn’t think much of it when I downloaded it. I find most touch screen games come down to two categories. Toys and Games. Easily 90% of the App Store and touch screen games in general fall into the toys category. What is a toy game? Something overly simple with little to almost no mechanics made for quick bursts of entertainment. You know when you are waiting in a line or on a short bus ride. Games you can hammer out small amounts of time. Just something to keep you busy. Now I don’t really like these toy games. I get the appeal and I do have some I play but I much rather play game games. The stuff the PC and console guys would consider as games. Games that involve planing, thought and a larger time investment than the length of a short bus ride or a wait in line. Something with evolving mechanics and maybe a larger scale story. Not large scale story mind you, just larger than the toys offer.

Dan The Man is a game. It would fit just fin on a PS4 as it does on touch. It is a side scroller beat them up game that works brilliantly with touch. The attacks animations are smooth and solid and the response time between clicking the button and Dan running the animation is as close to 1 to 1 as I can tell. Simply put, its responsive and feels good. There are fun lively enemies that get stronger and more challenging as you play. You have power ups and health you have to maintain. There is also multiple levels with changing layout and map styles. The most important thing being is that it’s fun.

All that being said the bane of mobile gaming and the reason why the big company’s and other gamers stay away/make fun of mobile is the dreaded cash shop and ads. Every 30 steps or so I’m hit with a video ad for another game. Randomly at check points I would be forced to watch an ad. There are even statues holding TVs that if you hit and break make you watch an ad ending with some kind of weapon or health reward. You can also watch ads for gold and that gold is spent heavily for your needed upgrades and heals. They also sell gold and other things for money. Nothing is pay to win but it sure feels like pay to play.


That is until you pay for premium. It is $4 and there is an option for $8.50 that will give you another playable character. There are also premium bundles that come with varying amounts of gold as well. I feel the $4 regular price is the best bang for you buck here. The game is good but it’s not more than $6 good. If you get the game try it and like it I recommend buying it for $4. Otherwise it’s almost unplayable. I don’t see this as a free to be play. It’s more of a $4 game that has a long annoying demo. It also doesn’t account for the amount of gold you might need. Later on in the game it might get difficult enough that you would want to buy gold. This is not my preferred model for this. I would much rather pay a slightly higher set fee and then pay for future DLC if I want them than this whole run around system all these apps have now. It’s just a way to squeeze a little bit more out of people willing to pay a bit more than others.

All that being said I would rate the game with the $4 purchase a solid 3/5. The game without it would be a 0.5/5. If you like it pay for it because it’s really not worth the annoyance otherwise. If they add coop it would be a solid 4/5 but I don’t really see that happening.

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Tesla X Musk Is Right

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Elon Musk the man behind Space X and Tesla has openly talked about going into space for not only the betterment of man kind but our survival. I absolutely agree. Our futures are not based here on the ground but up there in the stars. One of my greatest fantasies is to one day own a space ship. I know it’s ridiculous and can never happen in my life time but it’s a fantasy, that’s the whole point. I also want to marry Scarlet Johnson too but I think the space ship is more likely. Regardless it’s something I think about often in general and just before going to sleep. The space ship and our future not Scarlet Johnson I mean…ok her too but mostly the whole space ship thing.

I feel we have had a lot of notable sway when it comes to government funded space expedition but not to the degree that is needed. We underestimate the importance of space due to our worldly needs and political agendas. Space is our future and we’re too worried about who said what and snapchat. Fuck snapchat. We need more people like Elon Musk who understand our position and is openly trying to expand our foothold past this small blue planet we have almost killed off. Musk has been talking about colonizing Mars for a few years now and it looks like it’s really in the works. He plans to land people there within the next decade or so with all new space tech designed and made by his company Space X. A means of getting people and cargo across to the planet in one go and means of transportation and living when landed. These are all things he’s talked about on his twitter account and recent conference.

No one really cares about space unless someone’s beating some other country to it. The thing is its not us vs each other its us vs the great unknown. The faster we get past that the closer I am to getting out there with my space ship. Just me and Scarlet flying through the great reaches of space.

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Panasonic Lumix 25mm 1.7 Lens Review

Shot on the OM-D E-M5 Mark II with the Olympus 17mm f1.8 Unedited

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Shot on the OMD E-M5 Mark II with the Olympus 17mm f1.8 Unedited

I have been using the 17mm (34mm equivalent) Olympus 1.8 with my EM-5II and have been enjoying it. I said this on a few other articles about how versatile the 35mm focal length is but there is something about the 50mm focal length that is special. It is the go to focal length for most people. I would call it the most popular overall focal length of all time. As a street photographer I find myself having a hard time trying to pick between the two. After getting both I would say the 35mm gets more use from me and is what I find to be my preference for street shooting. That being said I would always have my 50mm with me at all times when shooting. I feel when you need a 50mm you really need a 50mm.

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Shot on the OMD E-M5 Mark II with the Panasonic Lumix 25mm f1.8 edited In Lightroom

Build:

The build isn’t the best. You cant expect features like weather sealing and full metal construction here for a lens that costs so little. (It does have a metal mount just in case you were wondering) That being said I have felt much worse which cost much more. The build of this lens isn’t very different from the Olympus 25mm 1.8, but that lens is about $200 more. Having owned that lens I would say the Panasonic Lumix 25mm 1.7 is equal in build quality if not slitty better. It opens up 0.1 more which isn’t huge but counts for something and also comes with a lens hood like the Olympus 25mm.

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Shot on the OMD E-M5 Mark II with the Panasonic Lumix 25mm f1.8 edited In Lightroom

Price:

The Panasonic Lumix 25mm 1.7 is an excellent value for what you get. Honestly just for the price alone I would recommend it. 50mm is a focal length I find is a must. When you need 50mm its difficult to find an alternative for it. That being said you might not be in love with the focal length. Why drop a crap load of cash on something you like but isn’t a must for you? This lens validates a really nice sweet spot when it comes price and function.

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Shot on the OMD E-M5 Mark II with the Panasonic Lumix 25mm f1.8 edited in Lightroom

Image Quality:

The lens is beautiful. Solid sharp images with lots of bokeh if you want it. I find it to be a little softer than my 17mm Olympus when it comes to street photography but there is a lot of movement and timing to account for in street photography. Also the Olympus 17mm is a solid $200 to $300 more. I would expect it to be a little better here and there but it isn’t by much. I would say it comes more down to preference here than anything else when I compare the two focal lengths. That being said I feel the value alone kind of validates this lens.

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Shot on the OMD E-M5 Mark II with the Panasonic Lumix 25mm f1.8 edited In Lightroom

Overall:

If you already have a 50mm and you are happy with it than you are not missing out, but if you don’t than I would have to recommend this lens for your Micro Four Thirds system. Especially if you are a street photographer. I have linked a gallery below of my visit to the Toronto Aquarium which I went to just to test out this lens. There should also be a link to some street photography I did that same day. I hope this article helped, feel free to link this to your friends and read some of my other articles also linked bellow.

Panasonic Lumix 25mm 1.7 Street Photogrpahy Examples

Panasonic Lumix 25mm 1.7 Color Examples

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OM-D E-M5 Mark II Review

Olympus 17mm 1.8 Lens Review

35mm vs 50mm Photography Comparison

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Shot on the OM-D E-M5 Mark II with the Olympus 17mm f1.8 edited in Lightroom

If you are reading this you are most likely one of a few people, the first being someone looking for their first lens. Another being some one who has either a 35mm or a 50mm and wanted to see what its like to be on the other side. Maybe you are looking for a single prime to take on vacation. Lastly and most likely you might just be one of those gross creepy street photographers like myself. Whoever you might be, I hope I can help you out a little here.

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Shot on the OM-D E-M5 Mark II with thePanasonic Lumix 25mm f1.8 edited in Lightroom

I am a former exclusive member of team 50mm. I still love the focal length and it is still probably my favourite overall focal length. That being said the 35mm focal length is damn good too. I was never really a fan till now where I forced myself to get it and use it. I herd up until this point from other street photographers and other photographers in general about how great the 35mm focal length is. How its the perfect all around focal length and how its great for traveling. If there was any one lens to do it all it should be the 35mm. I believed it, I just never got the chance. I felt the 50mm was pretty much the same thing but I was able to get more shallow depth of field with the trade off of not having as wide a shot. Truly that is what the 50mm is and it is great for that. That is part of why it is considered “Standard”. The 35mm on the other hand comes off as much more “normal”. (See what I did there? No? Don’t worry about it.) A better way I would put it is that the 35mm comes off a lot more natural. I feel it covers more ground. Gives you more options including a little bokeh.

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Shot on the OM-D E-M5 Mark II with the Olympus 17mm f1.8 edited in Lightroom

So which is better? Well I say both. Im sure thats not what you want to hear so ill go into detail. The 35mm is a swiss army knife, a jack of all trades. It does it all and it does it well. The 50mm on the other hand can be a little fancy. It just makes the subject look nice. You cant go as wide sure but on the other hand you don’t have to go as close to the subject. Its just at the curve where portrait lenses start so it can double as a portrait lens too. Sure the 35mm can do most of this but you can really make some models uncomfortable with how close you need to get.

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Shot on the OM-D E-M5 Mark II with thePanasonic Lumix 25mm f1.8 edited in Lightroom

Lets look at it this way. The 35mm is a grey suit and the 50mm is a black suit. This might be going over a lot of heads now since I’m going into fashion territory here but it is openly considered a grey or charcoal suit is much more versatile to wear than a black one. You can mix and match with a grey suit a lot easier than you can with a black one. You can wear a grey (charcoal) suit to a funeral or to a party and not look out of place. All that being said, damn does a black suit just look good. Not as versatile, no. The question is does it need to be? It just looks so good that, who cares? So which suit should you buy? For travel get yourself the 35mm grey suit. It will do everything you need it to do and it will do it well. For your first lens? Either one works here. If you plan to take more portraits and such the 50mm black suit. Maybe more into landscapes? Then go with the 35mm grey suit. If you have a 35mm grey suit and you are looking at that 50mm black suit don’t worry you are not missing out. Same goes the other way around. That being said I think all men should have a black suit and a grey suit. To my street photographers. Same deal. You can go either way and be happy but again I think all men should have a black suit and a grey suit.

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OM-D E-M5 Mark II Review

Olympus 17mm 1.8 Lens Review

Most Anticipated MMOs of 2016