Wednesday, 23 February 2011



Allow me introduce myself to anyone who may stumble in here accidentally or via a link.   Personal details will be very brief, however, but my name is Margaret and I'm 56 year old woman from somewhere in the vastness of the Australian continent.   My main interests are PC gaming, browsing the Internet, reading and writing fiction, music, my dog, animals in general, and stimulating discussion on many subjects with friends when the opportunity presents itself.  As far as gaming goes, I started out with the Commodore 64 many years ago and progressed through the Amiga, Playstation one and two, a couple of other consoles, and the PC, which is my only game machine of choice.  Besides the age demographic I know it will come as a shock to some that females play computer games.   There are more female gamers playing all genres of games, than many people realize.

Anyway, in The Elder Scrolls gaming circles I'm known by some as Maigrets and less often as Anja the Whisperer and this is my blog page.  Here I'll be talking about whatever takes my fancy whether it's games, books, writing, music or just a piece of trivia I found on the Internet.   I won't be talking about anything related to my personal life which also means no photograph, so tough luck there.  You'll have to use your imagination.   My private life is my own and only to be shared with the few people in this world I trust and care for and visa versa, so unless I decide to talk about something relevant my business won't be mentioned here.  It's also not a place to gossip about anyone else's private life.

Lately I've felt the need to document my thoughts and feelings on various topics and writing in a traditional style diary doesn't appeal at all.....writer's cramp..XD.  Typing screeds of text in Word that will only reside on my computer never to be read again is also a bit pointless in my opinion.  I don't find solo conversations therapeutic despite what "Psychology Today" might say.  My dog listens to me when I have something to say, but her vocabulary is limited even though body language can convey a puzzlement at what in the world my human is going on about today.
She does have real empathy though and knows when I feel down and how to cheer me with a big doggy smile and a soggy tennis ball.  Her name is Bella and she's an Aussie Kelpie/Aussie Red Heeler cross, black with the distinctive tan points.   She's very loving and intelligent and is sometimes better medicine than anything else for coping with the stresses of life.

Even if no other living soul reads what I've written here, it will my little space to call my own on the Internet.  Sometimes what I have to say will be in the form of a rant to vent frustrations, and other times will be just casual observation and reflection on life and the world.

The things I'll write about here are my views, expressed without influence by other people or trends, and I can express them freely without restraint.  Many will most likely disagree with a lot I have to say and that is a right I wouldn't try to suppress unless it's malicious or slanderous and deliberately designed to hurt someone.  I'm quite used to being disagreed with, but at least here I won't be talked over, put down or ridiculed because I think a little differently to the majority.   I don't believe in following the herd just because it's the thing to do or to be part of the "in" crowd and it has isolated me to an extent, but I'd rather that than try to be something I'm not.   I intensely dislike people who "suck up", whether that's to their boss at work or just someone they wish to emulate or please for some perceived benefit..  It's degrading and weak.  If anything I say in on this page affects my presence at other sites and forums because of my views on certain issues that will also be pretty pathetic.  I've seen it happen to others and fairly recently and it's probably a matter of time before I say something that someone, somewhere doesn't like.  Too bad, I don't care.

On the other hand some may agree with what I have to say which will be a surprise in itself, but in the end this is my place to express my thoughts in the fashion I wish.  I will back up any claims I might make about real issues with facts where possible.   I think in a logical manner for the most part, and I believe some things have no basis in fact and therefore can only be postulated and theorized.   I'll say right off then that I'm an Aetheist and get that out of the way.  I truly don't understand religion and how people can believe in a deity without actual tangible proof.  It baffles me.  People believe in a God they can't see or hear in any shape or form, yet they scoff at the thought of life on other worlds or anything else that may be just a little fantastic to be real.

I've heard people say "You can't see the wind or you can't see electricity, so God must be real as well,"  but these things can be measured and the results of their presence can be felt and observed without scientific instruments.   By the way, look up the word fantastic.  It's real meaning is fanciful, bizarre, unworldly, amazing or supernatural, (but not necessarily frightening).  The main use of the word today is quite informal and describes something "cool" or excellent, but in a different manner.

In my eyes the Bible is no more than a history book with fantasy elements, passed down the ages and changed as deemed fit by the religious powers of the time.   There are even very different versions of events so how is one to know what's true and what isn't.  No wonder so many people are confused about what is true and what is fiction.  It's no more believable to me than any fiction novel, edited, added to and embellished as the centuries passed.  Blind faith through indoctrination and fear is not truth, neither is mass faith gained via ultra charismatic figures and charlatans, many of whom line their own pockets at the expense of their followers.  However, I do believe in the "Golden Rule."    Basically, treat others as you would be treated and life should be at least bearable.  Unfortunately, this is a farce on many levels as there are too many stupid, thoughtless, bigoted, cruel and backward thinking people on this planet to ever think we may get along in some kind of Utopian peaceful existence.   All of what I've just said doesn't mean I'll be trashing anyone's personal beliefs directly as they have a right to them as much as I do, but I'm not in the market for religious conversion either.  I imagine you get the idea.

Moving on to PC game related things...
I've made some mods for the Elder Scrolls Oblivion.  Nothing ground breaking, but I'm somewhat proud that I did it at all since I don't have a programing or game modification background.
I didn't find it easy to start with, but now I know my way around the editor and a lot more that I don't show in my mods.  In my case, I mostly taught myself by reading everything I could on the subjects that interest me and asking for help on occasion.  There are a couple of people I'm deeply grateful to for helping to to get started with my first mod, but mostly I did it myself by using my initiative and seeking out information.   Reading forums related to the CS (Construction Set) is often a treasure trove of good info.

I'm not interested at all in learning to model new items or to texture them.   Sometimes I think about it and how things would be a lot easier if I could do this stuff myself, but I can't get up the enthusiasm.   My main interest is in the mechanics and programing of the game and how it can be manipulated by modding it.  That's not to say I'm any good at most of it or writing a complex script, but I can read one and understand it.  I can write quests, but it's not my favourite thing and I can create world spaces and a lot of other things that I don't bother to implement in my mods, and I enjoy it most of the time.   There's a huge world space (now a resource) mod that I was involved with a couple of years ago and I'm planning to do some work on it when I get the time and I also have a mod that's been in flux for quite awhile that I may finish one day.  It's actually the largest thing I've done, mostly on my own, and I learned a lot of new things by doing it, but things happened and it hasn't been completed.  Very close, but not complete, and there are now some elements I want to change.
I've added descriptions of my mods and links to downloads with screen shots in separate post.  They are mainly animal companions, a house mod with pets, and a couple of custom races.  They've all met some success of varying degrees and are still being downloaded.  I also have My Simple Creature Companion Tutorial which is very detailed with screen shots and the necessary scripts.  It's written so anyone who has never used the TESCS (The Elder Scrolls Construction Set) can understand it and and get something more than a companion from it.

Other games I find memorable and with a lot of replay value, and in no particular order are:
The Gothic series, especially Gothic 2:Night of the Raven, but I also like Gothic Three a lot since it was patched by the community.   There are also new texture packs and quest packs also community made.
Risen.  A short, but enjoyable game with Gothic mechanics, nice graphics and a good combat system.   I look forward to Risen 2 and that the few niggles in the first game are ironed out.
Oblivion and before that Morrowind.
Fallout 3 - but I've uninstalled that in favour of Fallout:New Vegas which I think is much superior in almost every way.  STEAM is much better than Windows Live as copy protection and I've had no issues at all with the platform.
Dues Ex.  The first game was and still is a classic, not so much the second.  I'm waiting to see what the third incarnation will be like, and if my computer can play it without needing an immediate upgrade.
Half Life 2
Vampire the Masquerade:Bloodlines
Divinity2:The Dragon Knight Saga - just an epic game from a small development team who did it right.
There are many more, mainly older ones, but these are the most memorable and I actually finished them rather than quitting part way through from boredom or because the next new shiny game came along.

Moving on to something a little boring......

I welcome people to visit and comment if they wish but the only thing I ask is to keep it civil, and please no LEET, text speak or profanity.  As far as swearing or cursing goes keep it mild, for example anything you see me using and definitely no F or C bombs as these will be deleted with the comments they are contained in and it will be a waste of your time and mine.

Use the English language as it was meant to be used.  In some circles it's becoming a dying art which is a sad thing. 

This is not a forum or site where understandably somewhat restrictive rules are necessary, but common sense should tell anyone what subjects can be discussed and if not I will definitely clarify it.  I don't do well on forums as my opinions differ from the majority and I often feel segregated by my views on some subjects and end up lurking and or leaving altogether.   Hence this blog.

No bitching about or flaming of others here or anywhere else will be tolerated.  This is my place and I expect people to behave accordingly as if it were my home.  In fact I have now changed my settings so comments need to be reviewed by me before they get published, so if anyone is thinking of abusing me and if they are gutless and don't leave a name I recognize it will all be a waste of their time.  Not mine though because it won't bother me an iota.

One last thing for the moment...I don't have a FaceBook or Twitter account or any other social networking program and don't intend to.  The only thing I do use is Yahoo Messenger which I haven't re-installed since the last Windows install, but probably will sometime soon as I've been working with an ex Oblivion modder for some time on a game project using the Unreal Editor.  It makes communication easier since we both live on opposite sides of the globe and I'm more comfortable with this mode.

More later.  I imagine this was

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