Craigslist Fails Me
I have had a strange relationship with Craigslist over the last few years. Sometimes it is the source of truly amazing things… other times the source of nothing but frustration. When it comes to buying laptops for example I have had a high rate of people flaking out on me and simply not showing up with the merchandise. When it comes to console systems however I have a pretty damned stellar experience getting a PS4 for $200 and a Vita for $100 for example. Hell right now I am typing on a $150 Logitech G710+ Keyboard that I got for $40… so generally I have some phenomenally good luck there. I’ve always felt like if I can keep from taking the initial depreciation hit on an item… I might as well do it. I have no problem with second hand goods, and while I don’t get to pepper the internet with unboxing videos… but I think we are both better off for that.
Several months back I found a Power Color r9 290x for over half off the price it should have been for the card. I figured it was worth the shot because that was way more video card than I would normally allow myself to buy. The problem with buying something like a video card is… there really is no way of knowing if the card is good. It could be burnt to a crisp and unless there are visible signs of damage there is no way of knowing. When it came time to meet the guy, he said that he replaced the card for a dual Titan Black setup… so that seemed legit at least as to why he would be getting rid of an otherwise solid card. I take the card home and install it and it caused my machine to reboot after a few minutes of running any game. When I started watching the temperature on a monitoring app it would just start climbing, and no amount of manual fan control would bring down the temp. The card would overheat and freak out my system.
At the time I was a bit forlorn but didn’t give up heart. I ordered a few things to increase the amount of cooling in my case and there they sat in the floor of my office for months. Part of me didn’t want to install them because deep down I think I knew that I essentially got ripped off on the first card. This weekend I tore apart my machine and installed all of the extra cooling and I have to say the processor now runs at a frosty 21* C with a recorded maximum of 28* C during gaming load. I am pretty happy with that but after installing the R9 290X it went through the same cycle as before. Load up any game and a few minutes later my system is rebooting. Chances are the guy was using it for bitcoin mining, which quite literally burns out a video card. I point blank asked him if that was the case he and said no… but people sometimes lie.
To get a good after market cooler to slap on the card it would end up costing me around $100 for one that fit this particular card… and it just didn’t think it was prudent to throw more money at it when the end result might be the same. I have mostly stuck with GeForce cards because quite honestly they are what I know. I know how they perform, I know how to tweak the settings. This was a brief foray into the concept of owning a Radeon but I am now retreating back into the realm of things I understand. I ordered a MSI GTX 960 card over the weekend and hopefully if everything works out as planned it will be here Tuesday. While this is not the screaming card the r9 290x should have been… it is at least stable, reliable and a significant upgrade over the 750 ti I currently have. I just want games to run without much futzing, and this card should allow me to do that. Also due to a promotion I apparently get a copy of Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt to play around with on it, a game I likely would have picked up anyways.
Marvel Heroes is one of those games that I have avoided like the plague for reasons I don’t fully understand. I played a tiny bit of it in beta and was not extremely impressed. However over time it has racked up a wide array of “most improved” titles from the various gaming sites. I always thought this was a funny concept to be touting… but in truth it is really well deserved. Earlier in the week I had decided to install the game through steam, because I kept seeing friends of mine playing it. I figured I would give it a shot and check it out to see how enjoyable it actually was. The end result was me spending three hours straight playing it last night without really realizing it. The game has the super hero feel down perfectly, and it actually does a better Diablo than Diablo at this point. When you start you are given a choice of several heroes, and after reading the descriptions of each of them… it seemed like Captain America fit my desired mode of play the best.
The irony of this is that other than enjoying the movies, I have never really been that big of a fan of Captain America. At the very least it was not a comic I ever read or spent much time on other than his involvement with the Avengers. Character wise however he is just about perfect a mix of a solid melee, solid ranged, and lots of defensive cooldowns. I guess you would assume that a character with a shield as a weapon would end up feeling pretty tanky right? My favorite thing about him is the shield throw and the ability to use it similar to Sivir in League of Legends to sweep the room and take out a bunch of bad guys. At this point I think I am level 11 and am actively looking forward to playing more of it. There are times it feels so much like a top down City of Heroes, so maybe this is the game that is going to finally give me my superhero mmo fix. I’ve heard the end game can get pretty grindy… but then again so does Diablo, so I guess it makes sense. In any case I threw some money their way for the X-Force pack through steam and look forward to trying all of those characters as well.