Sunday, January 26, 2014

Death of a Youtuber: Justin Carmical

I don't know how many of you guys watched him, but I just received news that Justin Carmical, best known by his handle JewWario, died this past Thursday, January 23, 2014. I had spoken to him a few times in the past, and he always made me feel special, like he was the big brother I never had. He even used a suggestion I made in his show. He was always awesome to talk to, and for those who actually got a chance to meet him found him to be a warm, funny, fun loving guy.

This is what was posted by his wife on Facebook a few days later;
It is with a very sad heart that I must confirm my husband, Justin Carmical, sometimes known as the Jew Wario died on Thursday, January 23rd.

I also have to confirm he shot himself, but he was not alone, he locked himself in the bathroom and I was on the other side of the door talking with him. He knew I loved him, HE KNEW ALL OF YOU LOVED HIM. You all made him so happy, every time he was recognized from his videos, it made him giddy with joy.

His last recording was a song with Johnathan Mann, I don't know if Johnathan knows. He recorded it the night before.

I am surrounded by family and friends, and am taking this one moment at a time, remembering to breathe. I want to share with you what the Chaplain said to me, it was a momentary mistake, hold on to the good memories. I will post an update once a decision has been made about funeral arrangements.

If I need anything I will let you know, just hold on to each other and love each other, and thank you all so much for loving him so much.

From what I read up on this, what caused it was financial stress combined with prior issues with depression. He lost his previous job and his youtube channel wasn't picking up the financial slack. He was also looking to make a movie, and he refused to use the funds that his fans gave him to pay his bills. Combine this with previous issues with depression and you've got a volatile situation where the man would feel like he had no hope.

Now, from outsiders, there were no indications that he had this darkness deep inside him. Any time you would see him at conventions or anything he posted online or any other appearances he made in public, he was always happy, playful and making sure everyone was having a good time. He even helped another former TGWTG contributor, Sarah Wilson, AKA Pushing Up Roses, to pick herself back after her OWN bout with suicidal thoughts.

This is a shining example of why we need to take care of our own mental health. If something's wrong SEEK HELP. If you feel like there's no hope, SEEK HELP. The sun always rises on a new day, and each new day gives you new opportunities to make things better.

And I'll leave you guys with a few websites on suicide prevention and how to cope with the loss you feel with if suicide took someone you care about.

Here's the link to the fundraiser for Justin's family;

So far, they have made far past their $850 dollar goal; $13,000 dollars so far, and it continues to grow. Since the whole thing was caused by financial difficulties, the more money we can send Jenny's way, the better.

Just take care of yourselves, ladies and gents.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Assassin's Den Review: Exploding Rabbit Productions

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all ages, welcome back to the Assassin's Den!

Today, I'm going to talk about a game developer; Exploding Rabbit Productions.

Exploding Rabbit is a production company that was founded on April 27, 2010, when Jay Pavlina released Super Mario Bros. Crossover. For a while, it was only one person, but now, it is a team of eight people. The company is focused on game development for now, but eventually, Jay would like for it to produce films and possibly music as well.

These guys are as indy as you can get; small company, no name people who's only real accomplishment is a kickstarter and the aforementioned Super Mario Crossover.  The kickstarter was for their IP, Super Action Squad, a sidescroller based heavily on what they learned from Super Mario Crossover, but is a completely original game with 9 playable characters.  More details about Super Action Squad can be found in this video here;

Yes, I know they call it Super Retro Squad in the video, but that name is from an earlier time in development. I'd wager that Super Action Squad will be the name they go with when the game is finally released.

Unfortunately, these guys are extremely small time, so most of the team has to have day jobs, so the release date for Super Action Squad is still TBA, since the team can't work on the game as much as they want to.  Which is why they are having a donation drive in addition to their kickstarter; which can be found here.

However, if you want to see how this game will end up being similar to, you can check out their face game, Super Mario Crossover.  This game was actually originally coded by Jay Pavlina, the president and CEO of Exploding Rabbit, back in 2009, and released it to the world in 2010. The game was released on April 28, 2010, and within 24 hours, had been played a million times.  And over the years, the game has been updated many times, adding new characters, new abilities for those characters, levels, cheats, all kinds of stuff.  All the characters, from Mega Man to Link to Ryu Hayabusa, control like they do in their own games, all while running, jumping and fighting in Mario levels.  And it is a brand new experience having Samus Aran running through Super Mario as well; this game is fun every time I play it.

So check out Super Mario Crossover, and think about dropping some money into the Exploding Rabbit bucket. It will help them release Super Action Squad sooner.  But for now...I still need to think of a new ending comment.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Feeling old? Couple ways to avoid that!

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all ages! Welcome back to the Assassin's Den!

Over the last couple of days, the webcomic Girls With Slingshots, has been doing its annual New Years comics, and the plot of it this year is that Hazel, the protagonist of the comic, is dealing with the "I feel old" at this one.  You see, Hazel's friends decided to "party like it's 1994", and Hazel, though into it, realizes that 1994 is now 20 years ago. And after the year turns to 2014 in the comic, Hazel is outside thinking about where her life is, and where she thought it would be by this point in her life.

This is something that everyone goes through at some point, though it hits those of us who are unmarried and without children earlier.  You are focused on making sure your kids are growing up right after all.  But those of us who are completely single? The fact that we are getting older hits us like a ton of bricks.  For us, youth doesn't feel as long ago as it truly is, and we can look at who we are and who we thought we'd be with a little more clarity.

Sure, we don't miss the past.  High school sucked, no matter how good the memories may make us feel.  No, what we miss is the unspent potential that we has back then.  The feeling that the future is bright, and we can take on the world, that no one can stop us. You know, all the feelings that are crushed under the weight of adulthood.  I mean, even ten years after high school, we've spent a LOT of time learning and perfecting a trade, building relationships and the like, and some of the potential we had back then is spent.

That's the thing though; even in our 30s, we've still got a LOT of time to make something of ourselves.  We're not considered washed up for another 30 years!  Yes, things are a little more limited since we've put a lot of effort into ourselves, but we've got a LOT Of time to go!

And besides, there are a couple of easy ways to avoid feeling old; don't pretend that things that were fun as a kid aren't fun now.  Who cares if people look at you funny for swinging on swing sets at the part? Who cares what looks you get when you watch Spongebob Squarepants or My Little Pony? What does it matter if you have Lego models on your shelves? You like it, so screw them!

And second, keep up to date with your personal musical tastes.  With websites like bandcamp and pandora, it's not as hard as it used to be. Pandora cycles through music that ties into your tastes, and bandcamp is the best place to find new and old artists.

And there are other ways to avoid feeling old.  But I leave those to you, as well as a quote from Chili Davis; Growing old is mandatory. Growing up is optional.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

SWTOR Character Profile: Second Sith Warrior and Inquisitor

Ladies and Gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all ages! Welcome back to the Assassin's Den.

Since Xletalis finished his Sith Legacy stories, I was actually inspired to connect my Light Side Sith Warrior and Inquisitor, though in a different way.  Instead of messing with the timeline like he did, I have these two happening concurrently.

Name: Yokonari
Gender: Female
Species: Pureblood Sith
Age: 22 standard years
Homeworld: Unknown
Class: Sith Warrior/Sith Maurader Carnedge Tree
Personality Profile: "You are a member of the White Knights; a secret organization within the Empire that is tasked with taking down the Sith most corrupted by the Dark Side.  Your family has trained you in the Light Side since your Force sensitivity was discovered, as well as the power of Force concealment.  Yes, the Dark Side rules the Empire, and yes, you will be killed if your true nature is ever discovered, but your sect maintains the balance of the Empire; you keep those who have fallen too far from destroying the Empire from within. However, to maintain your cover, you play the same power games that other Sith play, until you are required to do what is necessary."

Name: Casek (pronounced Cah-sek)
Gender: Male
Species: Zabrak
Age: 20 standard years
Homeworld: Unknown
Class: Sith Inquisitor/Sith Sorceror Lightning Tree
Personality Profile: "You were initiated into the White Knights when your Force sensitivity was discovered by your best friend Yokonari as a child, but you have not taken your final vows.  You've been made a Sith Lord, so they know you can survive and keep your nature secret from the rest of the Sith, but you've been so preoccupied with gaining the power necessary to survive Thanaton's war against you that you've not had the chance to stop.  They understand, of course, and will wait as long as necessary, but you want to finish this as soon as possible and get on with your true calling."

And that is these two. I'll get their pictures as soon as I have their looks and weapons for them. As for now...I'm looking for a better way to close these. :(