nicole_paoli FIRST Member Star(s) Indication of membership status - One star is a FIRST member, two stars is Double Gold Xur Escort

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from Tustin, California

  • Activity

    • To quote a post I saw on tumblr:

      3 years ago

      nicole_paoli Xur Escort


      But seriously, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays everyone! I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and that the celebrations are lively and joyful!

    • Do All The Things!

      3 years ago

      nicole_paoli Xur Escort

      I'm sitting here with so much stuff to do and none of it feels like work.

      Except homework. That does.

      But I've got a few projects I'm working on, PLUS my personal writing, PLUS my FangirlNation articles/reviews, PLUS I'm working on a Dragon Age talbetop campaign I may serialize if my players are alright with it. PLUS the normal holiday stuff like baking and gingerbread houses and YAY :D

      Tis the season for all the things! Back to Word so I can get more stuff done. Yay productivity!

    • Thank god for the little things

      3 years ago

      nicole_paoli Xur Escort

      I got a friend of mine Fallout 4 as an early Christmas present (because I'm a nerd and I wanted her to play and she said she wanted it), and I just... it's great.

      It's her first ever Bethesda game, and better than that, I get to listen to her play but I'm not telling her anything about it. It's REALLY amusing because we've been playing a lot of Destiny.

    • Whee :D

      3 years ago

      nicole_paoli Xur Escort

      So for those who don't know, I write for a website called FangirlNation. With the exception of press releases (which go to whoever wants to put them up), I'm pretty much the only one there who covers Rooster Teeth shows because... Well, I'm here, aren't I? Why wouldn't I write about things I like! Right now it's pretty much just RWBY and some Lazer Team stuff (although I dropped the ball on doing a write up for the release date because it came out while I was at work and didn't have the time to do a full write up >>), but I'm kinda hoping to expand it out. I'll probably do some RvB stuff when it's back.

      The important part of this is I'm pimping myself out on my own journal and am horrible at it. But in other news, I've been doing a RWBY Recap/Review of volume 3. It goes live Sundays after the episode is available to everyone (because I try not to be a dick). It's mostly recap, sometimes I put my thoughts in it because commentary is fun, and a bit review. Not a lot of review tbh mostly because I like reviewing the volume as a whole rather than episode by episode since it's not really an episodic show... Anyway.

      For anyone who wants to check out what I have up, here it is. It's not just RWBY stuff, since that links to my author page. I look at comics and video games too. So... yeah.

      I'm not a huge fan of pimping myself out, but I'm actually kinda proud about the fact that I do this. It's not as frequent as I'd like because of my day job and how tired I am when I get home, but I do try to keep some stuff scheduled, like the RWBY writeups. If anyone wants to see something in particular, I'm always down for suggestions?

    • 3 years ago

      nicole_paoli Xur Escort

      This journal gets no title because it's just me rambling for a second because I can >>

      So Wednesday nights is poetry night, and I skipped the last few weeks because of Convention prep (Gen Con flight, then RTX prep, then I was just tired yesterday)... But there's this new girl, right? And she's really cute and probably waaaay outta my league. Thank god I have good friends because I'm like 90% certain I'd die of embarrassment if I tried to talk to her. I'm generally not a social person unless I've been prepping hard core (RTX was the product of like... a month and a half of me mentally preparing to talk to people all day for an entire weekend).

      But so she's cute, and my friends are all like "just go for it" and I'm just sitting here flailing because oh my god she's smart and funny and a talented poet and SO OUT OF MY LEAGUE >>

      This has been "Nicole flails about girl problems journal entry one"

    • Murder at RTX Thoughts

      3 years ago

      nicole_paoli Xur Escort

      alternate title: "Why you should never name your assassination group after one of the more popular characters an AH lad plays" but that was a tad long.

      So, a great little event called Murder at RTX happened at, well... RTX. I'm gonna start with the basic fangirling and general hype: it was a LOT of fun, I highly recommend it, I had a blast and am really glad I had the chance to run it and help others out!

      At its core, Murder at RTX (Murder for short from here on out) is an ARG, or Alternate Reality Game. ARGs are games that take place both in digital and physical spaces. What that means is they take you to physical locations (JW Marriot/Hilton/ACC) as well as online or non-physical spaces (websites, phone numbers, the app, etc). Using clues given to you, you must solve the story. It's not always a mystery, it's not always a murder, but it is always some bare bones of a story to be told. Extremely popular and large ARGs include Year Zero (by Nine Inch Nails), I Love Bees ( by Microsoft), and Marble Hornets (this one should be obvious). All of those can be Googled and have their own wiki pages. For those who think this sounds interesting, there should still be a community at ARGNet that does these. I used to play in them and even helped admin/run a couple, placing dead drops as needed and generally helping play characters over Twitter, Facebook, and other social media. They're a lot of fun.

      I would be surprised if anyone over at RT knew they were making an ARG, since the acronym never came up during the hype or even the event itself. But that's exactly what they did, albeit an event specific one. Most ARGs in the past have either been purely for fun or as part of viral marketing. There aren't many that are done by a large company that also mainly focus on story and fun over hyping up a product, be that product an album, a game system, or a movie (looking at you, Cloverfield). So I was pleasantly surprised when I walked in expecting "interactive media" and got a game. Not just any game, a type of game I haven't participated in since high school.

      Where is this going, one might ask? Well, I'm going to talk at length about the actual Murder at RTX experience and there will be a LOT of spoilers. If you are going to experience it at RTX AU, please don't finish reading this. It's wonderful and you should absolutely experience it first hand. Otherwise, go on ahead.

      I'd like to start with story because that's where my specialty lies. I'm a writer, not a coder, and so I tend to focus on the story and character aspects of a game the most (followed by the design of elements, then the actual gritty technical stuff). The whole tone of the game is very Noir/Detective film style which was a blast. Hearing the RT folks talk like old school gumshoes was great and I loved all the little video clips. The first room has you introduced to Chris' character, who is the bumbling rookie who did something wrong and got places on the calls desk, and Joel's character, the chief detective who wants you to solve this case and solve it fast. Both of those were great! You get into the victim's room (Ernie is the victim, and yes all the names are like this), and you start investigating. The suspects quickly become clear: as you scan things with either the app (for iPhones) or a QR code reader (for androids), you get profiles and clues. My one thing is I'm sad we never actually see or hear anything from them later on the story, with a minor exception of Miles, who we hear on a vocemail. I would have loved to have heard Meg Malarky's "confession" when she's brought in personally. But alas, they all are mostly just profiles that you see and attempt to clear suspicion of. The app sends you around all three RTX locations, first making you run around the Convention Center to get clues before leading you to the Hilton and finally the JW Marriot (although it does send you back to the convention center at the end). These clues were mostly well done when it comes to story (I'll talk about other aspects in a little bit), but one clue was a tad out of place. I'm not talking about the store receipt (which does come into play in the end game), but the surveillance video. It's used to clear Jinx Jenkins of suspicion because she was littering and Earnie picked up the can she dropped, which was found in his room. There are a couple issues I had with this: one, it's a noir spy theme and if you drop something it's far easier to assume it's a dead drop than just plain littering, and two why would he bring the can all the way back to his hotel room if it's just trash? They go hand in hand a bit; because the can was in his room, it's easy to assume it's more than just a piece of trash and so give it more importance than it actually has. It's something to consider. I will also admit that I never found the website clue, nor did a majority of the people I talk to. Many of us found Kerry innocent because of the website through deduction rather than finding said clue. Now, all that being said, the other clues were very well done from a puzzle perspective. Many people had trouble with the CB Lounge phone puzzle, which was a tad more involved than the other puzzles. I absolutely adored it, but I also understand I'm a tad more experienced at these types of games and puzzles than the average convention goer. I quickly figured out the left ear trick and helped out others who didn't have earphones with them (the audio would have been extremely hard to separate without earphones). Getting the MOGAR id was awesome and I have mine saved so I can print and laminate it. Making it official and shit. Because others had a hard time with that, the CB Lounge door also gave them trouble, as they needed the ID from that puzzle to access the Lounge. This segues nicely into the slightly more technical side of things (from a ARG admin standpoint).

      The CB Lounge had four clues, and I'm unsure if it was proximity that was messing with them or what. iPhone users had a difficult time getting the conversations to trigger; I know I sat in there for a good while trying to get them to trigger while I waited for a friend to catch up. Meanwhile, android users scanning the code had access to all four; the code took them directly to the Soundcloud page that they were hosted on, and listening to one would auto play the other three. In addition, because they were there, it was easy to just click out to the user and cherry pick which ones to listen to. In fact, that's how I finally did it. I grabbed the Soundcloud user ID from an android user, went to my own SC app, and searched for that user to listen to the conversations. That sort of work around, while extremely handy when things start to go awry like in my case, is also something that can break immersion a bit and is probably not intended. There are ways around it, but I won't bore with the details unless people want to to know. Also, the same was semi-true of the YouTube videos for the video calls from people. While I didn't check all the videos, it was possible to find the other videos through a couple of them. That's an easy enough fix, though. Finally, people were finding Ernie's final message long before they were supposed to if only because it was in the same location as the RT Store clue. This sort of meta gaming isn't bad per se, it just probably isn't what was intended. As a side note: I adore that we get the RT Store clue early on and it doesn't become relevant until the end game.

      Because I wasn't involved in any behind the scenes, I'm going to forgo talking about the coding to talk a bit more about the story. I will say, when I figured out it was Meg Malarky, I was disappointed. It was a weak link, she didn't have an apparent motive for killing him other than being a MOGAR agent, we didn't find a murder weapon, and it just felt weak. Really weak, considering how strong RT can make their stories. Then the phone call came, and Barbara (as the coroner) pointed plenty of this out. The second she came back up on the screen, I started getting hopeful. And when Aaron revealed that Ernie was undercover, that he was investigating a mole, that maybe Meg was telling the truth and she didn't kill him, just disposed of the body... Well, that was the twist I should have seen coming the second I entered "Guilty" for Meg. I didn't though, and so I thoroughly enjoyed running back to the store, hearing Ernie's final message, and getting the choice. The choice between joining MOGAR or staying on the police force and turning in Chris as a double agent. Now, if this was intended to be a serious social experiment to see what people would do, I'm sorry. Mostly because you named the assassin guild MOGAR, which would instantly draw any Michael fans to it regardless. Also, once word got out about the pins you receive for completing it, people were deciding which they liked better. Personally, I joined the guild for neither of those reasons. My reason was purely from an RP standpoint: I like playing the bad guy. Bad guys add drama and tension, and both of those make for better stories.

      Overall, the experience was a blast and I highly recommend it to anyone who gets the chance to do it. It was a first time thing, and while there were times the rough edges showed, that didn't take away from the charm. 10/10, would absolutely participate again!

    • So a nerd sits down in an airport...

      3 years ago

      nicole_paoli Xur Escort

      I am waiting for my flight back home to get here and boarding to start. I have so many words and emotions and this is just as much to help me sort them out as it is to share.

      This was my second RTX, but first time being a Guardian. I've worked/helped with other cons before: Strategicon, WonderCon, and Eve GenCon last week. And for as much fun as all of those are, none can even compare to RTX.

      First off, I was over the moon when I got the first email stating I'd been picked to be a Guardian. I keep wondering what set me apart, and in the end it doesn't matter. What matters are the two reasons I set out to be a Guardian in the first place: one, the RT family is amazing and I wanted to help out and two, I wanted to help others have the wonderful experience I'd had my first time attending RTX last year. (I generally try to attend before I work so I get a chance to do things without worrying about having to be called for a job). That's it. I constantly joke with my friends that I live to help others, but there's a grain of truth to that. It's why I applied, and it's why in and out of shirt I tried to make sure everyone was doing alright. (In the process I ended up becoming someone oddly knowledgable about the Murder at RTX thing which was funny to me for a few reasons >>)

      Day one for me was Thursday/Pre-Reg day. I thought I'd booked my flight for Wednesday, but I was mistaken. Huge shout out to Mary, who was cool and understanding when I sent her an email asking if that was alright and apologizing for the mix up. I spent the day wandering between locations, offering to help as needed, and meeting some very cool people, including one of my Destiny friends. I don't even remember what I did for dinner that night. I think I grabbed food to go and went back to my room to finish homework. This was all after Gel and I went to K1 racing to see the AH/RT/FH guys. Had a chance to talk to Caiti for a while but mostly helped others take photos. Selfie posing is both fun and annoying, so I spent most of the night there offering to help people take photos.

      Friday. Friday was hectic and busy and so much fun. I can't even begin to describe how I felt helping out with the RWBY line and panel. I had the chance to stay for the panel and meet more wonderful people. There was so much energy in the room, and everyone was excited. We had a moment of silence for Monty, who will be sorely missed. There were announcements made, questions answered, and it was great. Spent the rest of the day between jobs, helping as needed.

      Saturday was about the same, but I had the chance to see Meg talk about hate online and how to deal with it. I didn't know how much I needed that panel until I attended it. Sadly, I didn't get to ask my question, but I also purposely put myself last so other attendees could ask theirs first. Saturday also was RTSQ, which was absolutely amazing! I participated in the barlympics on Team Grif, who lived up to their name and found some fun loopholes that could have been exploited for lazy points. We didn't win, but it was a lot of fun and I got half the MVP drumsticks, which was cool. Anyone who wants to see those antics, they're on Twitter under #teamgrif so... Have fun?

      Sunday. Final day. I was working Hilton mostly, and we had some good downtime. I got to run through the Murder at RTX, which I'll post about in a different journal for easy reading. I had an EXCELLENT time on it though and I highly recommend doing it if it's around at future cons. We closed shop, tore down stuff, had a final Guardian meeting that I almost cried at (I will never admit to crying >>). Walking out, there was a group of attendees who cheered for us... And I will admit that I choked up. I kept my head down because I'm shy and not used to these things but I appreciate every single person in that group.

      We also ran into a man who saw a couple of us in our Guardian shirts and thanks us personally. His son is on the autism spectrum, and he told us that this convention was the most open he'd ever seen him. That's the reason I wanted to be a Guardian... Helping others, hearing stories like that. That makes it more than worth it.

      Out of every con I've had the pleasure of working or even just attending, RTX is my favorite. The people are amazing, the atmosphere is awesome.... It's probably my favorite con of the year. So thank you, Rooster Teeth. Thank you Barbara, Gus, and Mary. Thank you everyone. See you all next year!

    • Gen Con

      3 years ago

      nicole_paoli Xur Escort

      I was tempted to title this "how to walk a marathon over four days" but nah.

      So I just got back from Gen Con last night. For those who don't know what that is, it's the biggest tabletop gaming convention in the US. The group I went with runs World of Darkness games for Onyx Path (formerly White Wolf publishing), and I was a runner for them. Actually, the knowledge I'd have a couple cons under my belt pre-RTX (between Gen Con and Wonder Con) was what initially got me to apply for Guardianship. But that's neither here nor there.

      Anyone who's a fan of tabletop/board/card games needs to attempt Gen Con at least once. It's a lot of fun, and has some amazing stuff. I ran into the SuperFight guys there and got to do a couple rounds against them (looking forward to seeing them at RTX as well). But no really... There are tournaments and competitions and just demos happening EVERYWHERE. It's really amazing. For video gamers, there are a few things going on as well, including CoD and Smash tournaments, LoL and Smite games, and just general free play areas. I mostly hung around the tabletop RPGs section because that's where I was working, and I got to play in the demo of a new game, Pugmire. You play a dog... And you try to be a Good dog. It's a silly concept that was a lot more fun than I was expecting.

      I wish I had more general stuff to say about the convention, but since I was working it I only got to see a small section. I also feel like I'm a tad spoiled; living close to LA means I have three gaming conventions a year I can go to, and so while I don't have the huge exhibit floor (which was so cool and had a wide variety of stuff), I get to run with some extremely talented GM's. It's a trade off, but it's worth it I think. Especially since I hardly had time to sleep and eat, let alone play in games during the con.

      So yeah. Gen Con. 10/10 would recommend for people who like board/tabletop games.

    • 4 years ago

      nicole_paoli Xur Escort

      Replaying Dragon Age Inquisition so I don't burn out on Destiny before House of Wolves comes out. Suuuuuuper excited for the DLC though. For both games really. Jaws of Hakkon will be interesting although I may wait for it to go on sale and House of Wolves looks so fab.

      Prison of Elders, here we come :D

    • 4 years ago

      nicole_paoli Xur Escort

      Things in Destiny I adore:

      Making horrible puns based off of the gun names. It's WAY TOO ENTERTAINING THOUGH.

  • Comments (2)

    • SwirlAndVinegar FIRST Member Star(s) Indication of membership status - One star is a FIRST member, two stars is Double Gold Swirl

      3 years ago

      Disney nerds unite! I live in Lake Forest, we aren't that far from each other! See you at RTX <3

      • nicole_paoli FIRST Member Star(s) Indication of membership status - One star is a FIRST member, two stars is Double Gold Xur Escort

        3 years ago

        Ohh nice! And if you end up working at Disney, there are good people there :D Most of my friendsare scattered around between photos, Haunted, and guards... One of these days maybe I'll actually get to work there.

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