Comic: Pikachu the Scholar

Pikachu the Scholar

“I could make a webcomic.” I naively thought to myself. “It would be a good place to put those shorter ideas I have that wouldn’t suit written articles, and they wouldn’t take as long to do.” Ha. Believe it or not this took around an hour and a half to produce, and I couldn’t even keep my art style consistent. Yes, I did cop out and get a picture of Chespin from the internet rather than drawing him myself, but it was probably for the best. Just look at what I did to Pikachu in the third panel. I was planning on making comics an irregular (but slightly more regular than my other pieces) thing on this site, but given how long this took I don’t know if it’ll happen again.

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How to reboot education-Sorting school with technology

A recent Guardian article about parents having to pay significant amounts of money for iPads highlighted some of the major problems with the lazy and ill-considered approaches to technology taken by many a modern British School. There are so many reasons that using iPads was a silly idea, half of them are simply arguments for using laptops over tablets, demonstrating how little consideration must have been taken when the decisions were made. Continue reading

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And the Tywinner is… A short Crusader Kings 2 Game of Thrones diary

In the Game of Thrones you Tywin or you die

In the Game of Thrones you Tywin or you die

Crusader Kings 2 is a game of maps, faces and family life, but don’t let that put you off. It may bombard you with a mass of unknown names such as ‘Count Emmo of Loon’ and wacky phrases like ‘de jure ducal claim’ but make no mistake, this is no mere history lesson (though it is helpful on that front). It’s basically the Sims if it were made by Paradox Interactive (don’t quote me on that). Crusader Kings 2 is all about political intrigue and family management (and a bit of war, if you’re unable to avoid it). You’ll spend most of your time sucking up to your superiors, arranging marriages for your children, excommunicating your spouse, deterring rebellions and deciding on memorable names for your children (I called one Pikachu, I immediately regretted it). It can all be a bit overwhelming; the game has many systems I still don’t understand or make use of and the tutorials don’t do a great job of explaining the technology and building systems. It can help to play in an environment you’re more familiar with.

It perhaps says something about the British secondary school education system that I’m probably more knowledgeable about the history of Westeros than I am about Europe in the Dark Ages. Like the majority of gamers, it seems, I’m a big fan of the Song of Ice and Fire books/the Game of Thrones TV show. As with most every modifiable game set before the 1700s or in a fantasy world CK2 has a Game of Thrones mod, and it’s a wonder. The game adds hundreds of familiar and not so familiar characters, tons of new mechanics and a big ol’ Westerosi map (with the other locations set to arrive later). This a short account of one of my attempts to play the Game of Thrones.

This should contain no spoilers for anything beyond the point at which the first series of the show/the first book ended, my own plot deviated pretty quickly from old George’s.

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My Daemon Story by Jim-Age 15 and one month

This was the picture I attached to my homework to represent my very soul

This was the picture I attached to my homework to represent my very soul

Having a daemon (Philip Pullman’s portable souls from His Dark Materials trilogy) would be great. I’d always have someone to talk to and it could help carry the shopping. Phillip Pullman is one of the best-loved, by myself at least, authors of books for children that have reached that age where they’ll get all stroppy like little babies if labelled as such, and anyone older. When my English class read his first book, Northern Lights/The Golden Compass, in Year 9 we were tasked with writing a first person story involving ourselves and the daemon we believed we would have. My choice of daemon (not that you can choose in Pullman’s universe) was a monkey, not because I believed myself to be cheeky but because a primate is so much more practical than anything else. I wanted practicality above all else, which I suppose is a good representation of me. I called my chum ‘Tallelia’, don’t know where I got the name from.

I don’t know that you’ll actually find this worthy reading but my past self certaintly did; I thought I should have got a Booker prize. I was so proud of my jokes and references to the rest of the fiction. To this day I still stop suddenly in my tracks to laugh at the concept of ‘Grand Theft Aero’. Ha! Hilarious!

I now present to you ‘My Daemon Story’. Catchy title, right? All grammatical and spelling errors have been left in for effect.

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Things that I have realised will never happen, that have thus made me sad

Whilst walking back from college today the idea of fighting dragons suddenly surfaced itself in my mind. For a short, wondrous moment I was in the air, clinging to the scaly spikes of a flying beast’s back as I dug my blade into its side like an icepick.
“Fighting a dragon would be cool.” I thought to myself, my mind back in reality. It was then that I realised, very suddenly and with much distress, that such a scenario will never actually happen, because dragons don’t exist (sorry, kids). After my ever so momentary moment of intense grief I started to recall some of the other times in my life where I’ve envisioned something impossible only to feel the cold, hard slab of boring reality smack me hard in the face (time alteration is a common theme). There are many things in life that I will never have or experience, by virtue of the fact that they simply do not exist or are impossible, and knowing that makes me a little bit sad. I have decided to collate these things here, in a vain hope that I will, not just make people laugh and appreciate me, but also create a sense of catharsis for myself. So here is my list of things that I have realised will never happen, that have thus made me sad. Try it yourself, it’s liberating.

Perhaps some are just slightly feasible, I sure hope so. Time travel would be ace.

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Just call me Jim-mar Bergman

At college I’ve been doing the Extended Project Qualification. It’s an additional load of work but it gets me an additional qualification and makes me look good. It was also quite fun. You’re given pretty much free rein to do your project on whatever you wish. Most people write long reports but some, myself included, produce an actual project, like a film or musical script, and a short written report to go alongside it. For my project I decided to learn how to use the free Source Filmmaker to produce an animated film, and this is the result. It ended as a kind of buddy cop, bromantic comedy, with more music I don’t have the rights to use than you can shake a censoring stick at.

Comments that I can nab and include in my report to show that I’ve received feedback would be appreciated. Even if they’re nothing more wholesome than a LOL.

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So I had a weird dream again.

Earlier this year I brought you a recount of a curious dream I had, one in which I was burgled by David Bowie’s illegitimate sons. On Tuesday night another odd episode made its way into my subconscious, one which I’m told is worth writing up. What’s interesting about this dream is that at the time it could be described as a nightmare. Such was my irrational state upon waking that I had to read for a while to clear my mind of the horrors I’d seen. In hindsight this fear seems ridiculous. Read on for a story that has everything, horror, oddball comedy, action, drama, important societal themes and even a little slice of romance. My other self thought of it all. Enjoy.

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Alternative sources for your Vitajim C (See what I did there?)

The header image for an article I may or not complete about the loss of my hero, Clint Eastwood.

It’s College time again which means my own site will be somewhat neglected for a while (this year without even Creative Writing homework to bolster it). Good news though! Because the College Newspaper is starting to become more prominent I’ll be doing more work for it. I’ve written a number of things recently including two small News Smash articles (which I affectionately refer to as satire) and a review of the local Comedy Club (yet to be posted). To see these and the plethora of other things I, and other folks, have master-crafted head here:http://strodeledger.wordpress.com/.

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Micro-rant: Isn’t it about time we all gave in to the undeniable practicality that is the spoon and fork?

Fun fact: I spent longer drawing the pictures for this piece than I did writing it.

Before I commence with my arguments let this be known, I do not abhor the use of knives in eating, merely the use of the knife and fork over the immensely superior spoon and fork. Given the choice I’d want all three but it is often the case that only two are available, particularly in eating establishments where one is often not given their spoon until dessert, or in places where the cutlery is disposed of afterwards and it would require 50% more resources to add an extra piece. All cutlery have their uses, some can just do more.

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Hell hath no fury like a gamer scorned-My opinions on the Mass Effect 3 Extended Cut

My Commander Shepard-Don’t Laugh

I realise that this is two posts in a row I’ve made on this site about video games and I apologise to any readers not of that community. 

Needless to say, this post contains spoilers for the entire Mass Effect series. If you haven’t completed the Extended Cut DLC you may not wish to read this, if you haven’t played the Mass Effect series at all then cease reading immediately. Otherwise, continue reading after the break to see my own thoughts on the interesting result of a community uproar.
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