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So after an overly long delay, The Gamer Studio was finally (re)launched this past monday. The overall theme was pretty much re-done, and the site itself is, for the most part, functional.

The Gamer Studio's new layout.

However, what seems to be lacking is more people and more content. If a gaming site is to get up off the ground, it’s going to need people with willpower. Furthermore, we could use better marketing to get ourselves out there. If we’re to succeed, we need a way to stand out amongst the crowd. If you’d like, visit TGS and tell us what you think. Or, if you have any suggestions, let me know. I guess it’s too early to say what will happen for now. Can’t say I’m all too distraught over it, though.

I’ve got a couple more projects on the horizon shore. One of which bleeds awesome.

 

Hint: It has to do with e-sports. 🙂

It’s not often I post on my blog. I try and keep it reserved for important things, such as life updates, or important occurrences that transcend the significane of a tweet or facebook update. Due to the irregularity of my posting, it’s not difficult to see that my life as of late hasn’t been all that exciting. When I returned to my blog’s canvas, I saw an untended field; a garden that I’ve neglected for quite a while. However, it’s not like I’m doing nothing. After quitting my job a few weeks ago, I’ve felt a resurgence of life, and have decided to focus my efforts on activities that I enjoy. Writing is one such thing.

I’ve been doing work for The Gamer Studio since October. The site was supposed to have been launched in January, but due to the fact that we really want to get it right, we’ve constantly postponed it. So far, we have a projected target relaunch date of April 11th. In fact, I’ve already written a bunch of content ready for publishing. I hope that all of the time and heart I’ve poured into this endeavor pays off or possibly, hopefully, leads into a career I’ll actually enjoy.

The past three years have taught me that there’s no point in living unless you find a love for what you do.

I forgot where I read/heard this, but I was informed that 2010 was supposed to be a bad year for those born in the Chinese zodiac year of the Tiger. In retrospect, I suppose I half agree. I mean, there really wasn’t anything significantly good that happened to me last year — just another wave in the ocean that is life. However, because last year was so relatively uneventful, I feel like this year will be a period of change for me, though, for better or worse, I cannot say. All I can do is move forward with a self-discipline and an open mind.

There are actually many endeavors I plan to devote myself towards throughout the coming months:

Writing

First and foremost, I hope that we can get thegamerstudio.com up and running as soon as possible. The site’s going through a bit of a “reboot” at the moment, and we plan to have a new layout, as well as loads of new content in the coming months. I’ve got quite a bit of gaming-related writing I’ve done behind the scenes, and am looking forward to publishing it. However, I’m also currently for other gaming sites to write for as well — it never hurts to have multiple projects running at once. Besides, I could definitely use the journalistic exercise.

Another writing endeavor I’ve had on the back-burner for a long time is a script — yeah, a script. One of my cousins is actually going to Chapman film school at the moment, and talked to me several months ago about me writing a script that he could possibly use. I’ve never written something of that magnitude, but I’m no doubt intrigued. I do have a couple of ideas, but for now it remains on the back-burner pending further inspiration.

Music

It's awesome. However, I can't get it to work properly. Damn.

Ah, music. Savior of I, many a time. For christmas, I bought myself a Shure SM57 instrument mic — a very good professional quality piece of equipment. However, I’ve been having some issues with recording. For some reason, I can’t get an audible volume when I playback my recording. What the hell? Perhaps it has something to do with compatibility between my macbook and GarageBand. I just can’t figure it out. Regardless, I keep trying.

Also, just today, I finished recording a semi-crappy backing track for my friend Serene, who entered a create-a-song contest. She hasn’t recorded the vocals yet, but when they are recorded, I’ll post about it. I am unhappy with the recording, though. Since I couldn’t get my main setup working correctly, I had to adapt and record with an acoustic and my macbook built-in mic; it’s as classy as ghetto recording can get!

Me

As for myself, I would really  like to get into shape. I’m not super fat, but working an office job has begun taking its toll. Fortunately, I refuse to let it take over. Hopefully I can manage to be consistent with working out. Sadly, I’ve been sick for the past week and a half. What a crappy time to be sick, you know? Christmas AND New Years. Bummer. Furthermore, playing an instrument looks a lot cooler when you’re in shape (like J from Luna Sea above). I’ve even changed my blog theme to reflect this new mindset. Ha.

However, what I plan to work on most, is my sense of self-discipline. I need to focus on what I plan to do and stay committed. I’ve made a lot of half-ass commitments in the past, and in the end, I found that to be pointless. Hopefully, with 2011 here and 2010 in the history books, I can move forward with my head and spirit held high.

Happy New Year, everyone!

Luna Sea live on stage. Surreal.

I never thought I’d see such a thing in my life. The words “Luna Sea” were illuminated upon the Hollywood Palladium’s shanty marquee. After what seemed like an eternity in traffic, we (some friends and I) were here; we had finally arrived.

The venue itself seemed kind of bleh. Hollywood’s just as dirty as downtown LA in my opinion. It kind of made me wonder why Luna Sea would come out to play here of all places. Oh well, I’m not going to complain. To my surprise, the line wasn’t really as long as I had anticipated. It only went halfway around the block, as opposed to around the block almost twice at J-Rock Revolution a few years back. After a bit of exploratory time killing, as well as a stop by McDonald’s, the line was moving; we were finally moving into the Palladium!

The first thing I did upon entrance was buy a t-shirt. Like any fanboy/girl, I had to buy a t-shirt. For me, it was kind of an achievement;  I had gotten an X-Japan t-shirt a few years back, and now, I’m finally able to get my hands on a Luna Sea t-shirt — tangible proof that I was there!

After buying the t-shirt, we moved towards the actual concert area. There were no chairs of course, which made me wonder why that had seat numbers on our tickets. Although my legs were tired, it was no matter — no pain, no gain. Watching the audience pour into the venue I was very surprised; there weren’t that many people at the Palladium. While I personally felt that this was awesome, because smaller shows have a more intimate feel to them, I felt kind of bad for Luna Sea, as they’re a band that’s used to rocking out in front of thousands upon thousands of fans. There must have been only a few hundred in the Palladium. Pushing random thoughts aside, we waited.

Time passed by very slowly as we waited for the band to come out. The stage was in view, and I spent the majority of my time trying to see what kind of amp equipment the band members had on stage. While I didn’t get to see J’s epic “Virgin Mary” bass amp, I did get to see Sugizo’s rig. I found it interesting that he was using an EVH cabinet, and possibly an EVH head as well. Sugizo + Eddie Van Halen =  epic tone? However, as I was discussing this with one of my friends, the lights in the room dimmed drastically. It was finally time.

As the lights went dark, the stage was enveloped in a foggy mist. Hands and fingers flew up. Screams of fans exploded through the darkness, as the five-man band took to the stage. After moving to their respective instruments, an ambient layer of sound arose from the overhead speakers. Sugizo played a series of  drawn out notes on his triple-neck custom, followed by Inoran’s signature arpeggios. Shinya’s drums then kicked in; slowly at first, but they built up, only to explode into J’s ball-shattering bassline — the intro to “LOVELESS.”

They played a great deal of their signature songs, although I was really hoping they’d play “JESUS.” I guess you can’t have everything. Anyhow, here was the setlist for the evening:

LOVELESS

Dejavu

SLAVE

END OF SORROW

TRUE BLUE

FACE TO FACE

gravity

RA-SE-N

Providence

GENESIS OF MIND

Drum Solo

Bass Solo

FATE

STORM

DESIRE

TIME IS DEAD

ROSIER

TONIGHT

Encore:

I for You

IN MY DREAM (WITH SHIVER)

WISH

Aside from the venue speakers being so loud that they kind of ruined the tone of the instruments, the night went well. Words cannot describe the sheer awe and awesomeness of seeing Luna Sea perform live for the first time in North America. The fact that those five band members — the same five that I really look up to, as both, musicians and personalities — were in the same room as I, was most surreal. I was especially fond of seeing Sugizo, Inoran, and J play live, as I’ve studies their styles of play meticulously through youtube.

All in all, it was an amazing experience. I finally got to see Luna Sea play live. To see the same songs I’ve practiced and solos I’ve worked on played live by their original creators is mind-blowing. I can only hope the band gets back together and starts working on a new album. After spending almost a decade apart, I can only wonder how each member has grown musically. But, in the end, I think they’ll be back. At least, I hope they’ll be back.

The moon always comes back.

With that said, Merry Christmas!

Could success be beyond the door?

As one who follows me might know, I’ve been quite busy lately. This, however, is not a result of work or necessity; it is rather of my own accord. Recently, I’ve been training (Angela knows what I’m talking about) myself so that I may become a better writer. I’ve actually decided to put my creative writing on the back-burner for now, in favor of learning a more journalistic style of writing.

After lots of self-reflection, I decided to gravitate towards my passions – one of them being gaming. Those who know me know I’ve played video games for a long time, in fact, often longer than I’ve known that given individual. Combining two passions – gaming and writing – seems like a natural progression for me. As a matter of fact, I’m actually surprised I haven’t ventured further into this territory in the past. Aside from starting a blog on IGN, I’ve taken the initiative to volunteer as an editor at a start-up gaming site: thegamerstudio.com. It is there that I am training; learning to use my writing skills in a creative, enthusiastic, and more realistic fashion. The best part? I’m having a blast.

Even though I’m “working” more than I have in a long, long time, I feel more alive (if that makes any sense). While gaming used to be a way for me to kill time and escape the mundane-ness of normal life, I’ve turned this time-sink into something much more productive, but equally as entertaining. It’s almost as if I’ve found a job (albeit a non-paying one at the moment) doing something I actually enjoy. With this, feel I’ve entered a door. While I’m not sure where it’s going at this point, my instincts tell me one thing:

“Keep going.”