New Toys

I’ve always wanted a Wacom tablet, and for my and the wife’s two year wedding anniversary, I bought one for myself.  I bought her one too, a larger one with more frills because February 14th through March 13th is a gangbuster gift giving season for me (Valentine’s, the anniversary, and then her birthday).   Anyway, I really love the thing.  Being left handed but having accepted the right handed orientation of all software and hardware design for PCs, I’ve never been able to draw well with a mouse unless I was willing to take hours to make images that should have taken minutes.  My right hand on the mouse works great for gaming, but never for the really fine motor work of graphical art.  But with the tablet, I’m able to move the task of drawing over to my left hand without having to fight with software and seeking out rare left handed mice.

I’m not great at drawing, but its nice to be able to doodle directly into the computer what I would normally be doodling on pieces of paper.  There are a few examples of my new digital doodling handiwork rotating through the banner images here on the weblog, and there will be more to come.

The wife also got me another gift, one I didn’t pick myself, for our anniversary: Burnout Paradise.  I’ve always been fond of the Burnout series of games, and this one is no different.  The single player game play really isn’t much different from prior games, you race, you win, you gain rewards.  Where this game really shines, however, is in the online play.  While previous entries in the series offered online racing, Burnout Paradise offers up what they call “Freeburn” which is where you get into game with up to seven other people and can explore the city together.  During this Freeburn, the host can initiate races or can pull up one of 50 challenges for everyone to do together (there are 350 challenges in all, 50 for each grouping of players from 2 to 8).  The only disadvantage to the new Burnout game is the “sandbox” style set up for the single player.  Races begin at intersections and proceed to wherever, and if you fail to win the race, you have to drive back to the start to try again.  It can be extremely frustrating if you lose a race by just a couple of seconds several times in a row.

I’m really enjoying both of my new toys.

One comment

  1. I’ve thought about getting one for the office for zone design. I tend to use one of the Cintiqs that the artists use when I fire up a map. I either use that or what the other designers call the “Shwaydtiq,” which is a white board and a digital camera. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *