My Weekly Recommendation (#12)

My Weekly Recommendation (#12) – The Witcher III

As I sit and wait for Netflix’s original The Witcher series, I found myself reminiscing of the days back in 2015 when The Witcher III: Wild Hunt was released. It hadn’t been long after that before I logged into my PlayStation and purchased the game, which I haven’t quit playing since. I forgot how incredible this game was, and for so many reasons too. 

Of course, my first go-round back in the day was on an Xbox, so the first thing I observed after logging in was the superior graphics. The hills, trees, and skies off in the distance are more mesmerizing than I recall. And as I mowed my way through some of the earlier creatures, I noticed how smooth the combat mechanics still were. And how could I not mention the storyline! Each and every quest builds upon the next so effortlessly. The conversations between Gerald and the NPCs throughout the story are written so well. Everything about this game is still incredible, and I can’t wait to dive deeper into it over the next few weeks.

So for all the gamers out there, I highly suggest giving The Witcher III: Wild Hunt a go as soon as you can. And for those who have already played the game, go back and play it again! The world is filled with quests and Easter eggs, and I bet there is still something new out there for you. After all, this game was given all those awards for a reason!

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt Review

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt Review

As I sit and wait for Netflix’s original The Witcher series, I found myself reminiscing of the days back in 2015 when The Witcher III: Wild Hunt was released. It hadn’t been long after that before I logged into my PlayStation and purchased the game, which I haven’t quit playing since. I forgot how incredible this game was, and for so many reasons too.

Of course, my first go-round back in the day was on an Xbox, so the first thing I observed after logging in was the superior graphics. The hills, trees, and skies off in the distance are more mesmerizing than I recall. And as I mowed my way through some of the earlier creatures, I noticed how smooth the combat mechanics still were. And how could I not mention the story line! Each and every quest builds upon the next so effortlessly. The conversations between Gerald and the NPCs throughout the story are written so well. Everything about this game is still incredible, and I can’t wait to dive deeper into it over the next few weeks.

So for all the gamers out there, I highly suggest giving The Witcher III: Wild Hunt a go as soon as you can. And for those who have already played the game, go back and play it again! The world is filled with quests and Easter eggs, and I’d bet there is something new even for someone who has beaten the game. After all, this game was given tons of awards for a reason!

Thanks again for reading my weekly recommendations. As always, please leave some feedback and give my page a follow so you can experience all of my content. I’d love to hear from all of my wonderful readers, so be sure to rate/comment often!

The Rift – Part III (þrír)

The Rift: Part III (þrír)

“But Abel, we cannot attack the Nordic tribes head on. I understand that we outnumber them, but they have retreated back to THEIR lands. We do not stand a chance at defeating them within their own terrain.” Sage pleaded with his king, but deep down he knew there was no changing his mind.

“I do not care. Harald will pay for what he has done. How could he kill my only boy? He was so young and had so many things yet to accomplish. And all over a stupid barkeep’s daughter! I will not rest until he befalls the same fate as Alexander. Harald Leif’s head will rest on a spike for eternity when I am through with him.” Abel Rudland furiously pounded his fist on the war table where he had seated himself. Most of the war pieces tumbled and fell off the sides from the force of the human kings rage. 

“I know what he did was uncalled for, sire. I’m sure we can meet with Daealla and Orrowyn and they will join our cause. Then we can vote him out of command and replace Harald with a new leader,” Sage bleated as he slowly kneeled down to pick up the fallen pieces. “And then if it comes down to it we would at least have allies for the war that breaks out.”

“Oh bet your ass war will break out, Sage. Orrowyn himself fled before we awoke. That bastard probably helped Harald plan all of this. I’ve known for quite some time the mage thinks this whole treaty is a pointless waste of time, but I didn’t see him rushing to Harald’s side to kill my boy.” The king paused for a moment as his eyes wandered over to his son’s armor in the corner of the room. They had found the boy’s body in the barkeep’s shed the day after his severed head had been found. It was cold and lifeless, laying in a pool of blood and already starting to rot. He had been planning on giving his son his new set of golden armor as they made their way back after the treaty, but now he regretted not giving it to him sooner. 

“Whether the woodland elves and mages side with us or Harald, the treaty has been broken. I plan on attacking that miserable excuse of a man no matter the cost. It must be done. In the name of Alexander Rudland, it must be done.” The king stood and slowly walked out of his solar, leaving Sage to himself. Abel had been fuming since he found Alexander’s head plunged on to that spike. It had been nearly four days of rage, but now the grief was settling in. As he paced the halls of his castle he realized he was subconsciously making his way towards Alexander’s room. He continued heading that way, but as he got to the door he stopped. He couldn’t bring himself to enter the boy’s room and he knew that he would never be able again unless the man responsible for his death had been punished. He turned and decided to head to the kitchens. It had been four days since his son’s death and four days since Abel’s last meal, but he now knew what he must do would require him to be at full strength.

After his meal he paced back to the war room in hopes of finding Sage. As he neared the door he heard voices inside and assumed Sage had called the king’s other trusted advisers for a meeting. He opened the door and was shocked to see Daealla within the room with Sage. “Daealla, what are you doing here? How did you get in? I have the city on full guard and -” 

“Abel, you know I have my ways. Full guard or not I can make my way into any city unnoticed. But that is beside the point, I am here to talk strategy. I know what you are planning to do.” 

Daealla stared into Abel’s soul. She had the most beautifully ominous eyes he had ever seen, and it was almost as if her gaze was calming him by the second. “Good, Ymir knows we could use the help.” Abel walked to his chair and sat across from Daealla as Sage pulled a chair by his king. “Have you heard anything from Orrowyn Daealla? I want to know if that coward had anything to do with this and if he will side with Harald or us.” Daealla averted her gaze from the king for the first time since he entered, and the calm feeling vanished.

“I have heard nothing from him, but I know he had nothing to do with your son’s death. One of my children saw everything that happened that night. I will spare you the details bu-”

The king cut off the Woodland Queen. “You will do no such thing. I will know how my son died, it is a father’s right to know.”

Daealla nodded, but didn’t speak right away. After a moment had passed she finally explained the details of that night to Abel. By the end of the tale the king was shaking with anger. “And your boy, why didn’t he step in to do anything? Why didn’t he run to tell anyone?”

“He is only 15 years of age, Abel. What would he have done against a man such as Harald? He was scared out of his wits that night and hid behind the bar until well after the Norsemen had left. And I would’ve told you sooner as well had you not left for your city’s walls so quickly. I know you are grieving Abel, but we are on your side and behind you no matter what. What Harald did… there is no excuse for it. He must pay for his crimes and we MUST return peace to our lands. Unfortunately, I believe the only way to do so will be to start a war that will remove him from power.”

“And Orrowyn, what of him? I know you two have been close for many years now.” Abel questioned.

“We don’t know of his true involvement, but it seems as if he has sides with Harald. We will do what we must Abel, and if that involves removing Orrowyn from this world then it will be a sacrifice I must make.”

Abel leered at Daealla. He wasn’t sure she would be able to kill one of her closest friends if it came to it, but he knew he would have no issue doing what she could not if Orrowyn had anything to do with the death of Alexander. The human king stood and turned to the door. “It is settled then, we will meet just south of The Shivering Valley. Head back to your people, Daealla, and be sure they are prepared. We head for war at the next full moon.”

The Rift – Prir

The Rift: Part III (Prir)

“But Abel, we cannot attack the Nordic tribes head on. I understand that we outnumber them, but they have retreated back to THEIR lands. We do not stand a chance at defeating them within their own terrain.” Sage pleaded with his king, but deep down he knew there was no changing his mind.

“I do not care. Harald will pay for what he has done. How could he kill my only boy? He was so young and had so many things yet to accomplish. And all over a stupid barkeep’s daughter! I will not rest until he befalls the same fate as Alexander. Harald Leif’s head will rest on a spike for eternity when I am through with him.” Abel Rudland furiously pounded his fist on the war table where he had seated himself. Most of the war pieces tumbled and fell off the sides from the force of the human kings rage. 

“I know what he did was uncalled for, sire. I’m sure we can meet with Daealla and Orrowyn and they will join our cause. Then we can vote him out of command and replace Harald with a new leader,” Sage bleated as he slowly kneeled down to pick up the fallen pieces. “And then if it comes down to it we would at least have allies for the war that breaks out.”

“Oh bet your ass war will break out, Sage. Orrowyn himself fled before we awoke. That bastard probably helped Harald plan all of this. I’ve known for quite some time the mage thinks this whole treaty is a pointless waste of time, but I didn’t see him rushing to Harald’s side to kill my boy.” The king paused for a moment as his eyes wandered over to his son’s armor in the corner of the room. They had found the boy’s body in the barkeep’s shed the day after his severed head had been found. It was cold and lifeless, laying in a pool of blood and already starting to rot. He had been planning on giving his son his new set of golden armor as they made their way back after the treaty, but now he regretted not giving it to him sooner. 

“Whether the woodland elves and mages side with us or Harald, the treaty has been broken. I plan on attacking that miserable excuse of a man no matter the cost. It must be done. In the name of Alexander Rudland, it must be done.” The king stood and slowly walked out of his solar, leaving Sage to himself. Abel had been fuming since he found Alexander’s head plunged on to that spike. It had been nearly four days of rage, but now the grief was settling in. As he paced the halls of his castle he realized he was subconsciously making his way towards Alexander’s room. He continued heading that way, but as he got to the door he stopped. He couldn’t bring himself to enter the boy’s room and he knew that he would never be able again unless the man responsible for his death had been punished. He turned and decided to head to the kitchens. It had been four days since his son’s death and four days since Abel’s last meal, but he now knew what he must do would require him to be at full strength.

After his meal he paced back to the war room in hopes of finding Sage. As he neared the door he heard voices inside and assumed Sage had called the king’s other trusted advisers for a meeting. He opened the door and was shocked to see Daealla within the room with Sage. “Daealla, what are you doing here? How did you get in? I have the city on full guard and -” 

“Abel, you know I have my ways. Full guard or not I can make my way into any city unnoticed. But that is beside the point, I am here to talk strategy. I know what you are planning to do.” 

Daealla stared into Abel’s soul. She had the most beautifully ominous eyes he had ever seen, and it was almost as if her gaze was calming him by the second. “Good, Ymir knows we could use the help.” Abel walked to his chair and sat across from Daealla as Sage pulled a chair by his king. “Have you heard anything from Orrowyn Daealla? I want to know if that coward had anything to do with this and if he will side with Harald or us.” Daealla averted her gaze from the king for the first time since he entered, and the calm feeling vanished.

“I have heard nothing from him, but I know he had nothing to do with your son’s death. One of my children saw everything that happened that night. I will spare you the details bu-”

The king cut off the Woodland Queen. “You will do no such thing. I will know how my son died, it is a father’s right to know.”

Daealla nodded, but didn’t speak right away. After a moment had passed she finally explained the details of that night to Abel. By the end of the tale the king was shaking with anger. “And your boy, why didn’t he step in to do anything? Why didn’t he run to tell anyone?”

“He is only 15 years of age, Abel. What would he have done against a man such as Harald? He was scared out of his wits that night and hid behind the bar until well after the Norsemen had left. And I would’ve told you sooner as well had you not left for your city’s walls so quickly. I know you are grieving Abel, but we are on your side and behind you no matter what. What Harald did… there is no excuse for it. He must pay for his crimes and we MUST return peace to our lands. Unfortunately, I believe the only way to do so will be to start a war that will remove him from power.”

“And Orrowyn, what of him? I know you two have been close for many years now.” Abel questioned.

“We don’t know of his true involvement, but it seems as if he has sides with Harald. We will do what we must Abel, and if that involves removing Orrowyn from this world then it will be a sacrifice I must make.”

Abel leered at Daealla. He wasn’t sure she would be able to kill one of her closest friends if it came to it, but he knew he would have no issue doing what she could not if Orrowyn had anything to do with the death of Alexander. The human king stood and turned to the door. “It is settled then, we will meet just south of The Shivering Valley. Head back to your people, Daealla, and be sure they are prepared. We head for war at the next full moon.”

An Ode to Fantasy Television

An Ode to Fantasy Television

Ever since I was a young lad, I have always been a sucker for the fantasy genre. I’d like to think it all started when I began reading Harry Potter in third grade. I was so addicted to those books. I actually read Chamber of Secrets in its entirety the very first weekend I owned it. From those early years, my tastes have spread their roots across countless books, shows, video games, and movies. The first show I remember truly falling in love with was the CW’s Supernatural, which by the way is STILL one of my favorites and STILL running. But when I think about the fantasy genre, there are three shows I think crush the rest of the competition. Coming in at numbers one and two are Supernatural and Game of Thrones, but they are fairly interchangeable at this point. GoT had easily been my number one for the last five or six years, but the ending of the final season may have opened the door for Supernatural to solidify its place in first. Following them both at number three is HBO’s True Blood, which I also watched just as religiously as numbers one and two. Naturally, there are plenty of other top-notch fantasy shows that could have been mentioned, but to me these three hold the crown with ease.  

Spirits, Wendigos, and Lucifer Himself

Let’s begin with Supernatural and its fourteen seasons. It initially aired on September 13th, 2005 and is one of the CW’s most successful shows, not to mention its longest running program by quite a few seasons. Coming later this year will be season fifteen, which I’m sad to say will be its last. I am super excited to see what’s in store though because the finale of season fourteen was quite a doozy. Anyways, one of the main reasons I enjoy Supernatural to the extent I do is the vast array of monsters and villains that are used. Even way back in 2005, before all the technological advances of the television industry, they did a great job of pulling you into the scene with Sam and Dean whenever they were going up against one of the bad guys. You would think that after fourteen seasons they would have had some difficulty writing or that the storyline would have gotten somewhat redundant, but that is not the case at all. Also, the storytelling in this show is phenomenal. Every little detail about the creatures is so in depth and I just love it so much. There may be a few too many sappy brother scenes or an absolutely dreadful musical episode sprinkled into a season every now and again, but even then I am always shocked by how well each episode is put together.  

Fire and Blood

Next up is Game of Thrones, one of the most watched and talked about shows of my generation. I think this fell into many people’s top few shows before the final season aired last month, but now I am not so sure. If you have a phone or computer with access to the internet, I am certain you’ve seen all the negativity that the show was (and still is…) getting. I’ll admit, I was not a fan of how the series ended, but I also thought every minute up until the halfway point of episode six was absolute perfection (outside of the two water bottles and the starbucks cup lol). All of that nonsense is beside the point though, because GoT will go down in history as one of the most iconic television shows no matter how many people sign petitions about the final season. Nobody can argue that the quality of show HBO put out was anything but exceptional, especially in its final season. The battles in episodes three and five were masterfully shot, and honestly all the battle scenes throughout the entire show constantly had me at the edge of my seat. And then HBO drops that documentary on us… I won’t lie, I cried when Kit started crying towards the end. Game of Thrones coming to a close was actually the original spark behind my novel and that led me to the realization of what my true passion was. So if you were not yet sold on me being utterly engulfed within the fantasy genre, think again.  

Everyone’s Favorite Vampire Show

Rounding out my top three fantasy shows is another HBO classic, True Blood. This was one of their earlier masterpieces, beginning in late 2008 and ending after seven spectacular seasons in 2014. True Blood was the first fantasy show I remember that stood out on a production scale. The carnage they were able to create when the vampires and other monsters were ripping each other apart was insane. And, once again, HBO absolutely nailed the scripts that went into this show. Plus the cast was beyond stacked with incredible actors which made the dialogues seem even more natural. HBO actually made me feel like I would cross paths with a Maenad or a Skin-walker if I traveled down to Bon Temps. Unfortunately that is not the case, and if I travel down to Louisiana all I’ll discover is the greatest food of all time and even better people.  

I wanted to briefly touch on some honorable mentions of mine as well because these three shows were not the sole reasons I became such a fantasy fan over the years. MTV’s Teen Wolf is probably the closest thing to a runner up for this category, mainly because it was out when I was in high school and was so easy to relate too. Then there is The Magicians, which is one of my current favorites on the Syfy channel. They just wrapped up the fourth season not too long ago, and I hope there are many more to come. One final piece was Showtime’s Penny Dreadful, which had a very dark and twisted story line. It ended abruptly in season three which struck many people by surprise. It was one of those shows that constantly left my mind spinning in confusion and had me doing research to try and guess what would happen on the next episode. But whether a show fell into my list or just my honorable mentions, they are all enormously significant to the fantasy genre. Without these shows, I would have never been inspired to start a book or pursue my dreams. And for that, fantasy, I thank you.  

Thanks again for reading my ode to fantasy. As always, please leave some feedback and give my page a follow so you can experience all of my content. I’d love to hear from all of my wonderful readers, so be sure to rate/comment often!

An Ode to Fantasy Television (6/7/19)

[Originally published on 6/7/19 on my previous site, Bright-blood.com]

An Ode to Fantasy Television

Ever since I was a young lad, I have always been a sucker for the fantasy genre. I’d like to think it all started when I began reading Harry Potter in third grade. I was so addicted to those books. I actually read Chamber of Secrets in its entirety the very first weekend I owned it. From those early years, my tastes have spread their roots across countless books, shows, video games, and movies. The first show I remember truly falling in love with was the CW’s Supernatural, which by the way is STILL one of my favorites and STILL running. But when I think about the fantasy genre, there are three shows I think crush the rest of the competition. Coming in at numbers one and two are Supernatural and Game of Thrones, but they are fairly interchangeable at this point. GoT had easily been my number one for the last five or six years, but the ending of the final season may have opened the door for Supernatural to solidify its place in first. Following them both at number three is HBO’s True Blood, which I also watched just as religiously as numbers one and two. Naturally, there are plenty of other top-notch fantasy shows that could have been mentioned, but to me these three hold the crown with ease.  

Let’s begin with Supernatural and its fourteen seasons. It initially aired on September 13th, 2005 and is one of the CW’s most successful shows, not to mention its longest running program by quite a few seasons. Coming later this year will be season fifteen, which I’m sad to say will be its last. I am super excited to see what’s in store though because the finale of season fourteen was quite a doozy. Anyways, one of the main reasons I enjoy Supernatural to the extent I do is the vast array of monsters and villains that are used. Even way back in 2005, before all the technological advances of the television industry, they did a great job of pulling you into the scene with Sam and Dean whenever they were going up against one of the bad guys. You would think that after fourteen seasons they would have had some difficulty writing or that the storyline would have gotten somewhat redundant, but that is not the case at all. Also, the storytelling in this show is phenomenal. Every little detail about the creatures is so in depth and I just love it so much. There may be a few too many sappy brother scenes or an absolutely dreadful musical episode sprinkled into a season every now and again, but even then I am always shocked by how well each episode is put together.  

Next up is Game of Thrones, one of the most watched and talked about shows of my generation. I think this fell into many people’s top few shows before the final season aired last month, but now I am not so sure. If you have a phone or computer with access to the internet, I am certain you’ve seen all the negativity that the show was (and still is…) getting. I’ll admit, I was not a fan of how the series ended, but I also thought every minute up until the halfway point of episode six was absolute perfection (outside of the two water bottles and the starbucks cup lol). All of that nonsense is beside the point though, because GoT will go down in history as one of the most iconic television shows no matter how many people sign petitions about the final season. Nobody can argue that the quality of show HBO put out was anything but exceptional, especially in its final season. The battles in episodes three and five were masterfully shot, and honestly all the battle scenes throughout the entire show constantly had me at the edge of my seat. And then HBO drops that documentary on us… I won’t lie, I cried when Kit started crying towards the end. Game of Thrones coming to a close was actually the original spark behind my novel and that led me to the realization of what my true passion was. So if you were not yet sold on me being utterly engulfed within the fantasy genre, think again.  

Rounding out my top three fantasy shows is another HBO classic, True Blood. This was one of their earlier masterpieces, beginning in late 2008 and ending after seven spectacular seasons in 2014. True Blood was the first fantasy show I remember that stood out on a production scale. The carnage they were able to create when the vampires and other monsters were ripping each other apart was insane. And, once again, HBO absolutely nailed the scripts that went into this show, plus the cast was stacked with incredible actors which made the dialogues seem even more natural. HBO actually made me feel like I would cross paths with a Maenad or a Skinwalker if I traveled down to Bon Temps. Unfortunately that is not the case, and if I travel down to Louisiana all I’ll discover is the greatest food of all time and even better people.  

I wanted to briefly touch on some honorable mentions of mine as well because these three shows were not the sole reasons I became such a fantasy fan over the years. MTV’s Teen Wolf is probably the closest thing to a runner up for this category, mainly because it was out when I was in high school and was so easy to relate too. Then there is The Magicians, which is one of my current favorites on the Syfy channel. They just wrapped up the fourth season not too long ago, and I hope there are many more to come. One final piece was Showtime’s Penny Dreadful, which had a very dark and twisted storyline. It ended abruptly in season three which struck many people by surprise. It was one of those shows that constantly left my mind spinning in confusion and had me doing research to try and guess what would happen on the next episode. But whether a show fell into my list or just my honorable mentions, they are all enormously significant to the fantasy genre. Without these shows, I wouldn’t have been inspired to start a book or pursue my dreams. And for that, fantasy, I thank you.