Looking for Some Kickass

It’s been a tough year for Kickass Torrents, one of the most popular torrent sites as of late. Back in July of 2016, the alleged founder of Kickass Torrents, Artem Vaulin, was arrested in Poland and charged with some pretty heavy crimes. They included:

  • Criminal copyright infringement
  • Conspiracy to commit criminal copyright infringement
  • Conspiracy to commit money laundering

Ouch!

In addition, the web site domain was seized and shut down. However, mirrors and copies of the site were quickly re-established online and a weird cat and mouse game has persisted as many users seek viable alternatives to Kickass Torrent for all their downloading needs.

Earlier this month, the country of Australia started ordering DNS blocks on the various mirrors.

Meanwhile, young Artem was just released from solitary confinement on bail. His bail was a hefty $108,000 and his passport was confiscated, so he’s stuck in Poland while he waits to find out whether he will be extradited to the United States.

He was recently interviewed by the Verge, just two days before being released. It’s a fascinating story.

Happy Birthday, James M. Barrie

You probably don’t know who James M. Barrie was. That’s okay. Most people don’t.

But do you know who Peter Pan is? Of course you do. And Peter Pan wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t for James M. Barrie. He’s the Scottish playwright who wrote Peter Pan, or the Boy Who Would Not Grow Up. The play was performed first in 1904, although the play itself was not published until 1928.

James M. Barrie died in 1937 in London, just before the onslaught of World War II.

The play was adapted to many different formats, and probably the most famous is the Disney animated movie, Peter Pan. BTW, did you know that Disney Movies Anywhere makes it easy to watch that movie? Well, when it’s not in the vault. Love it!

peterpanfly

The Walt Disney Company has probably made more money off James M. Barrie than anyone ever thought possible.

TinkerBell, who is one of the key characters from the play and movie, went on to become a staple of the Disney franchise.

She was pretty much the mascot of Disney following the movie, appearing in the title sequence for the weekly Disney TV show, and also in the logo sequence for many movie releases. Disney used her as the foundation of its powerful Fairy franchise, which has spawned more books and movies than you can count.

But it all started with the humble Scottish playwright, James M. Barrie. He was the subject of another movie, Finding Neverland. It stars Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet. It also features Dustin Hoffman, who played Captain Hook in the movie, Hook (1991).

Happy Birthday!

Living in the Bone Pit

Yesterday I wrote about Clash Royale, specifically about the best troops to have and some tips and tricks. Today I’d like to talk about arenas in the game.

bonePitClashRoyale

In particular, Bone Pit, where I’m really spending most of my time. Not by choice. It’s just that I can’t seem to get to 800 Trophies, which I need to graduate from this godforsaken heap of skeleton dung.

But first, we should take a quick look at all the arenas:

  1. Goblin Stadium
  2. Bone Pit
  3. Barbarian Bowl
  4. P.E.K.K.A’s Playhouse
  5. Spell Valley
  6. Builder’s Workshop
  7. Royal Arena
  8. Legendary Arena

As you can see, I’m barely through the list. Stuck on Arena 2. When I do get 800 Trophies, I’ll advance to the Barbarian Bowl, where I will unlock a bunch of new troops, including the Skeletons, Minions, Tombstone, Bomb Tower, Giant Skeleton, and Balloon. Those last two are wicked-awesome Elite cards.

But before I can unlock any of those cards, I need to get to the aforementioned 800 Trophies. Wish me luck. Lots and lots of luck.

 

 

 

Clash Royale Troops and Tips

Wow, I have been playing Clash Royale for the past month or two and it’s really very easily my favorite game in a long time. It is a simple card battle game played against other players in real-time. The battles are quick (most last just 3 minutes) and the gameplay is fun. I haven’t spent any real money on it yet but I think it is just a matter of time. Haha.

clashRoyaleChests

The meat and potatoes of the game are the cards that you collect. These are the troops that you put into battle to achieve glory! Here is a very simple rundown of the tips and strategies you can put into place with the cards available in Clash Royale.

I also got a lot of ideas here: Clash Royale Cheats and Tips.

If you’re really stuck, take a peek in the Clash Royale Forums over over in the Clash Royale section of Reddit. Lots of friendly peeps in there.

OK, here’s the skinny on all the troops.

Arrows – These currently counter groups of small troops. Not a ton to say about it, but it’s been one of the most popular cards in the game since the soft launch due to how versatile it is. Great against minion horde, goblin barrel, and princess.

Musketeer – I see a lot of people do this, but don’t put her in front of a charging prince. You’re better off taking the tower damage than donating 4 elixir. Musketeer is possibly the best troop counter against princess, out-ranges a cannon (good for punishing someone playing defensively), and does a lot of standalone damage. She’s good by herself both offensively and defensively, so she synergizes with everything. Weak against lightning and any high damage troop you can put on top of it.

Valkyrie – Does damage in an area around her in a circle. You can drop her right in the middle of a bunch of squishy troops (spear goblins, skeletons, etc) or between a witch and her skeletons. Great with freeze and great against small troops in general.

Freeze – This can be not bad against any large group of troops that would do damage for you. It goes well with any high damage, balloon, or hog low well-being troops like goblins.

Elixir Collector – This trades 5 elixir now for 7 elixir later (assuming it doesn’t take damage). This is more significant than it sounds, because it allows for some expensive push combinations that wouldn’t otherwise be possible. For placement, I think your first should always be in the middle of the map.

Skeleton – High damage, super low cost, super low well-being. Much the same to goblins. They’ve absurdly high damage for their elixir price when you can keep them living, making them really great against to use with halt or hog pushes.

PEKKA – TThere is a tooltip in Battle of Families that says that HER armour is too heavy to get launched from a spring snare. Valk, great against double prince, golem. Poor against inferno and little troops.

Knight – Cheap tank, surprisingly good damage to tower if it gets ignored. This is a very good card to drop on squishy ranged troops as they cross the river (witch, musketeer, bomber). Good for split pushes, a cheap front line, or defense. Weak against air and in the current meta barbs seem to be more popular.

Fireball – Good defensively or offensively because you can very easily hit multiple targets. I actually don’t think this card is very good for the current meta because most of what it can 1 shot will die to arrows for cheaper. It’s great against 3 musketeers, barbs (they’ll survive but your tower will 1 shot them all), huts, and minion horde.

Witch – She does splash damage and summons skeletons in front of her. Good defensively, especially against things like prince pushes or skeleton army. Countered by dropping damn near anything on her as soon as she crosses the river.

Skeleton Army – Good against any single target troops like PEKKA, mini pekka, prince, etc. Countered any sort of splash like witch or bomber.

Baby Dragon – Air, tanky, and splash but does so little damage it wouldn’t make a small cry if it with a hit directly to the face. Good vs poorly placed spear goblins (kills them all in 1 shot) or minion swarm (needs to be placed in front of them so he doesn’t get beaten up during the deployment time)

Archers – Great standalone damage to tower, hits air units, lots of range. Additionally for spreading troops outside vs hog a superb economical option / balloon or freeze freeze. Mainly countered by position (like losing goblins immediately on top of them).

Mini PEKKA – Lowish health, high damage, single target. This is really useful with freeze or for countering hog. It’s also a great card to split push with because if ignored it will take out their tower.

Bomber – Cheap, high splash damage, doesn’t hit air. Good to put behind a golem but you’ll be in danger against air. Hard counter to barbs and any small troops.

Giant – Tanky and only goes for buildings. Good to put as a front line for any sort of squishy high damage troops. Also good for drawing tower fire before you throw a goblin barrel in.

Prince – Very high single target damage. Don’t drop anything squishy directly in front of him! Can be a good choice defensively to deal with troops such as the hog then counterpush hard. Weak against groups of small troops like skeletons.

Goblins – Similar in gameplay to skeletons. Also worth noting that they’re a bit better at higher level due to towers requiring 3 shots to kill them (as opposed to 2 at tournament levels). High damage, low cost, low health.

Spear Goblins – Cheap, ranged, and they hit air. Good if you’re struggling against air and good if you’re trying to keep your elixir cost down. Decent to send in behind any tanky troops.

Goblin Hut – Spawns spear goblins and is good for setting up to push. This can be effective defensively because it is very hard to push into. Countered by pushing the opposite lane – also vulnerable to spells hitting the hut + tower.

Goblin Barrel – Best when the tower is in some way distracted, countered by arrows or partially countered by dropping troops nearby to kill them quickly.

Lightning – Good againts 3 musketeers, building based decks, baby dragon, musketeer, wizard. I’d only advise playing this if you’re going to do heavy damage to at LEAST 2 things (likely tower + a 4ish elixir troop or building).

Minion – Low health, high damage air. Can be useful defensively since a lot of troops can’t hit air. Also good in decks that utilize a lot of small units (like goblin barrel). Countered by wizard, zap, or any splash.

Bomb Tower – Can’t hit air but is really good against clumps of ground troops. It’s good against hut decks, barbs, witch, etc. Countered by air and lightning. Can also be countered by saving elixir while it slowly dies to time (playing collector is very good for this).

Tombstone – The skeletons can help a bit for pushing a lane or for making pushes with expensive single target troops like prince or PEKKA near impossible.

Balloon – Due to being air, this troop is actually 1 square less sensitive than hog about being dragged toward the middle.

Giant Skeleton – Blows up for a ton of damage in the area after it dies. This is very good for countering guys who commit to all in attacks on you, especially from medium health units that will lose most of their HP in the blast (musketeer, valk, double prince, etc).

Barbarians – If you play these in the middle of the map you can split them into a 2×2 attack forcing your opponent to either counter both sides or take a bunch of damage.

Cannon – Hits ground and is a very low cost building choice for dragging hog or balloon away from the tower. If played correctly this card can get even more value from disrupting pathing than it does from the actual cannon fire.

Barbarian Hut – Usually played with Goblin hit as part of a gimmick deck, but I don’t think they necessarily have to be played together.

Rocket – Highest crown tower damage spell in the game. People use this a lot with siege decks, but it also has some very good defensive use if your opponent goes all in against you.

Rage – This seems to be best used as part of a slow push (hut decks, PEKKA or golem starting from the back, elixir collector up). If your opponent plays this they’re likely going all in with their elixir.

Minion Horde – Instead of paying 3 elixir for 3 minions you’re paying 5 elixir for 6 minions. What a steal! If you’re using these against arrows play them defensively.

Ice Wizard – The splash is good against small troops and the slow is good against everything. Can be useful against balloon because the slow is enough to let your tower get a lot of extra shots in.

Tesla – You can freeze this before it pops up to avoid it messing with hog/balloon pathing. A bit more expensive than cannon but it hits air. Timing spells as you go in for your attack helps with this.

Wizard – He can devastate a whole minion horde in 1 shot with the right timing. Best against small units and best placed behind something tanky. If you need to defend against him and only have small units wait until he locks onto your tower (or something big) before you drop them.

Mirror – Lets you play the same card twice for 1 extra elixir. If you’re going to use this you should be playing a card that is difficult to counter because you’re overpaying to begin with.

Poison – Good against small troops. Also a good choice to play with hog, although so far in the game it seems to have been outshined by freeze.

Mortar – 4 elixir siege unit. Plays similar to X-bow but because it’s cheaper you have more options to defend. Plays well with anything that can defend it (inferno, tesla, minion horde, barbs, cannon).

Golem – The tank of all tanks. You can use him defensively by placing him in front of double prince pushes.

Royal Giant – Honestly, I’ve never seen this used effectively and in my opinion it’s because it’s a really badly designed unit. Who wants their tank in the back? I hear it works well against mortar, but I’ve never seen it used effectively. Countered by just pushing random buttons on your phone.

3 Musketeers – This really isn’t as laughable of a unit as people make it out to be. If your opponent doesn’t have the right troops up to defend against this (for example, if they just played hog freeze) they are going to be in big trouble.

Princess – Has long enough range to shoot from across the bridge. She deals splash, which makes her hard counter goblins and minions. Arrows counters her up until level 5.

Dark Prince – Similar to the regular prince, but he isn’t quite as tanky and has a shield that absorbs some damage. He also deals splash damage, which makes him a great candidate in front of the prince.

Zap – A bit less damage than arrows but has a stun. Useful against skeleton horde, minions (especially for the decks that try to force you to waste arrows), and the stun is useful against just about everything. The main complaint seems to be that it can’t 1 shot minions, so spear goblins tends to go pretty well in these decks.

Inferno – Kind of like burning ants with a magnifying glass, if this stays on the same target it does bigger and bigger damage. Hard counter to golem and PEKKA. It’ll win against a lone prince for the same elixir cost and can be useful just to have presence in the middle of the map (pulling troops into the “kill zone”).

Vampire Madness

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Totally stoked for Vampire’s Curse Island on Poptropica which is now available for everyone to play this afternoon. I have been playing Poptropica for a while and this is the twenty-fifth island they have made. There used to not be very many at all but 25 is a lot! This one is about vampires. You have to rescue a girl from Count Bram who is basically Dracula. He lives in a castle near a village and it’s a scary place. It is hard in places, especially the part called the Great Hall which is completely dark until you light all the candles up in it. I figured it out with a little help from some cheats!

Poptropica Cheats for Vampire’s Curse Island

The end is great too. I don’t want to spoil too much but Count Bram discovers you and there’s a big chase scene at the end. I guess I did kind of give it away. lol.

Back and playing CP again

Hey everyone. I haven’t been playing CP for a long time (almost a whole year) so this blog hasn’t been updated very much at all. I just started playing again and I think I missed a few things like some new parties.

But I think a lot of the parties this year were old and recycled from earlier parties so maybe I didn’t miss too much. I can’t believe they gave away the blue wizard hat again at the Medieval Party. lol. That one is so old!

Going to do Mission 11 today because that is new. I finished up Mission 10 a few months before I left CP so it’s like I never really left!

Music Jam 2009 Starting

The Club Penguin Music Jam 2009 starts really soon and it’s going to be rockin’. DJ Cadence will appear in the Night Club up on the top floor and the Band will appear in the backstage area. SecretPenguin has a DJ Cadence Tracker and a Club Penguin Band Tracker that I will use to find them. They are both offline right now because the party hasn’t started. The official party start is tomorrow but that usually means 9 pm Penguin Time tonight (Thursday). See you there Penguin peeps!