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My Addiction Continues
Posted March 30, 2007, 2:00 pm by Steve
Categories: Video Games, Life
I swear I am addicted to Gears of War. I'm playing the single player campaign through on Insane difficulty now...and it is definitely insanely hard! This game is one of my all-time favorites, probably only second to the Halo series. I even have new games to play, both triple A retail and Xbox Live Arcade games. But, somehow, Gears keeps finding itself back into my Xbox 360.
About My Action Figure Collection
Posted March 30, 2007, 1:59 pm by Steve
Categories: Action Figures, Life

Kung-fu Battle Grip. That’s when it really started for me. I always loved action figures growing up, but when GI Joe’s were introduced with a new form of articulation my piggy bank was instantly drained as I rushed to the nearest retailer (within walking distance of the house) after spotting an end cap stocked full of the new series of 3.5” figures. Obviously, as most young boys still are, I was into collecting Star Wars toys too. GI Joe was always preferred due to their better articulation and accessories.

As a teen I’d browse the toy sections, but never purchased. Not until later in life did I find the nerve to admit my desires to collect action figures. A few years after college I was fortunate enough to have a comfortable corporate job allowing my bank account to accumulate extra funds. Not a lot but enough that I finally caved in buying a Spawn figure at the local Toys-R-Us that I’d been eyeballing for awhile. While the initial purchase took courage, the subsequent did not. I recall a few weeks later filling up a shopping cart with the entire current Spawn series plus a few strays from outside that particular line. I loved the details in McFarlane’s brand, as did the design and price point. $10 on average wasn’t bad at all. Once I had the toy stores cleaned out I went online. Here I started collecting affordable Spawn figures from older series that the brick-and-mortar retailers stopped carrying. I had large boxes full, some opened, some not, and a Cairo cabinet of figures on display.

My only issue at the time with McFarlane’s designs was the minimal articulation. This was something I missed in my current line of figures compared to the Kung-fu Battle Grip GI Joes. Then my friend, Chad (who my wife now hate ;-), introduced me to 1:6 scale Elite Force figures by Blue Box Toys (BBi). These larger scaled figures had the details of the Spawn series and the articulation and accessories of GI Joes, but at a price of $35 each. It took a short while to convince myself to take the leap from $10 figures to higher-end and more expensive collectibles. I got one, then two, then three and so on. Before long $35 each seemed very reasonable, even to my wife.

My collection of 1:6 scale action figures has been my focus for the past 7 or so years. I’ll still get a Spawn or smaller scale figure, but not very often. My interests in the last couple years have grown to high-end figures from Asian designers like Hot Toys and Medicom to domestic companies such as Sideshow Toys. Unlike in the early days of action figure collecting, my purchases are limited now by the price of these high-end toys. Most range in the $100-200 range. If I can get anything below that I feel it’s a steal. Besides the decision of what figures to acquire, my biggest challenge is whether I leave them in the box or open, assemble and pose for display.

About My Movie Collection
Posted March 30, 2007, 1:58 pm by Steve
Categories: Movies, Life

There is a reason why I work in the entertainment industry - I love movies! I remember as a kid I was absolutely amazed when we got our first VCR and my parents joined a newly opened video rental store. I just couldn’t believe we could now watch movies whenever we wanted, without commercials, at home. I always loved movies so this was a major deal in my life. Also, I loved going to the theater. There’s something about the combined experience of the giant screen, dark theater, opening previews, popcorn, etc that I really enjoy. I’m the type of person that can just as easily see a movie at the theater with a friend or alone.

By the time I got my first job during high school and could actually buy movies I decided to wait for a better format then VHS. It was a hard decision because the next format didn’t arrive for many, many years later. Every time I wanted to purchase a movie on VHS I’d have to remind myself that eventually it will come out on a 'CD-like' disc. Laser discs to me where like albums, too big and clunky. Fortunately I didn’t fall victim to the failing format. Once DVD hit around 1997 I rushed out buying a 1st generation DVD player with a 5.1 decoder built in for $600. That was about the time e-commerce started gaining popularity so finding online coupons was simple. I’d buy DVDs just because I had a good coupon. Years later I still have unopened titles.

My DVD purchasing as slowed down over the years in anticipation of the next evolution of the format. Although the new HD formats are here, I believe they will have a short term lifespan when compared to DVD. The next logical step is digital distribution. However, with that being said I still bought the HD DVD add-on for the Xbox 360 and love it. Since the volume of my DVD collection is very high, I’ll focus on HD DVD, Blu-ray Discs and downloaded titles only here.

About My Music Collection
Posted March 30, 2007, 1:58 pm by Steve
Categories: Music, Life

Music is my soul savior making my work commute in Los Angeles traffic, on the busiest freeway, during the busiest times, bearable. About every two weeks I swap out my disc holder for about 15 new artists. I try to grab a variety within the genres I like, which is mostly heavier rock. I have hundreds of CD that I've been collecting since, geez, maybe the mid-80s. Artists range from Pantera to Bon Jovi to My Chemical Romance to Unearth. I rip every new CD I buy - yes, I still buy CDs. I use the factory audio system in my Acura and it doesn't support MP3s so I'll stick with CDs for now. Plus, honestly, if I enjoy an artist enough to purchase their music then I feel they deserve that support. However, I'll download songs too, but not as often any more. Most are from older favorites from the 80s, like Keel and Black ‘N Blue, that I once had on cassette.

Here you'll find my collection, but the volume of music listed is nowhere near complete. I continue to update it as I buy or download new artists, but I don't think I'll ever have my entire collection listed.

SANDTROOPER
Another Fett Will Be Mine!
Can you really put a price on snagging quality Action Figures? As always, I recommend hooking ASAP whenever a new dude is found. This course of action however can prove to be...a bit unsettling on the homefront from time to time :)
Posted July 9, 2007, 2:30 pm by Chad