Lasombra Files Episode 9: Trail Blazing
Welcome to the Lasombra Files, PSU’s weekly hit program. Follow the story of Lasombra and V as they try to stay alive in Shadow City, unraveling its secrets, while at the same time shining the spotlight on Trophy hunters around the world and in our community.
The man asks me where the Omni File is, and through the curtain of pain from the magnum-handled backhand, I can only shrug. “Omni File? Do I look like Commander Shepard?” Again my quick wit causes my skull to have a hot date with Miss Magnum. “Seriously, I don’t know anything about any Omni File except the…oh…OH…uh, do you think Sony is going to give the technical specs to some beat reporter?” in Episode 9: Trail Blazing. The tension could be cut with a knife as thin as the plot of Dark Souls. This is where V would usually kill people but even she couldn’t out-tank a half dozen various firearms at point blank range aimed at our skulls. I guess the Greeks think stealing the PS4 specs would solve their current financial crisis.
Disclaimer: This interview is reproduced as written by the interviewee with the exception of spelling and some grammar corrections. Pictures copyright of their artist/photographer/owner.
Name: Justin (Preferably Blaze, Blazi, etc.)
Occupation: Going into high school (My life goal is to be a guitarist and/or vocalist in a band)
Lasombra: When did you start gaming?
Blazi: I have really been gaming for as long as I can remember. I think it was when I was around 4 I started playing my first games on the PSOne, typically Crash Bandicoot, Spyro and later on Twisted Metal. I had also become a big fan of Pokemon games and was always playing them on mobile devices ranging from Gameboy Color, up to the DS. I also played lots of Sonic on Gamecube and some other well known series on PS2 like Ratchet and Clank, as well as Jak and Daxter. I also got into Guitar Hero and excelled at it, which actually had gotten me into music, as before I had little knowledge. That is the story of my rise to power.
Lasombra: How did you choose your PSN name?
Blazi: My name is derived from a few things, as I mentioned above I was a fan of Pokemon. And my favourite Pokemon had been from the Ruby/Sapphire games and that was "Blaziken". I started playing with tons of variations of the name with different suffixes, the most prevalent one being "Blazikener". So when I got my PS3 I wanted to change it up and add a completely different tone to it. I felt that adding -killer was a nice change of pace and sounded a lot cooler.
Lasombra: What motivated you to become a trophy hunter? What was your initial spark?
Blazi: Well like many others I originally kind of just glanced at trophies with uncertainty, but I looked into them more and they pretty much required what I have always enjoyed doing and always have done; Completing a game as much as possible and doing everything within.
Lasombra: Are you a trophy hunter, platinum hunter, or a specific hunter? (Example: All GoW game hunter)
Blazi: I'd have to go more with a platinum hunter. I enjoy playing all the games I buy, so why not complete them in all their glory? In terms of a specific hunter I could fall under that in some ways, such as Call of Duty and Fallout I have completed on most, if not all terms.
Lasombra: How many hours do you dedicate to trophy hunting?
Blazi: If we are speaking in a week’s time, I probably spend anywhere from 40-50 hours. But that easily changes every week with family, friends, and music among other things. It can easily decrease and increase by many hours.
Lasombra: What motivates you to go for that next trophy? How do you stay motivated after a long gaming session, particularly with grinding trophies?
Blazi: Currently it would be the motivation of completing my goals that I have set for this gaming year and just the fact I love seeing that platinum and 100% next to a game's title. If the session was frustrating or difficult I can usually find some peace by playing guitar, or listening to some sweet metal music and just let the nerves calm before I continue. If it wasn't that situation, I would still likely go back to the same routine afterwards.
Lasombra: Have you ever gone through any burnout from your sessions?
Blazi: I have commonly gone through burnouts, but not necessarily from gaming sessions, usually from other means, such as school work; unfortunately, gaming can't always come first.
Lasombra: What is your proudest platinum? Why? Was it your hardest?
Blazi: Twisted Metal would be the easy choice for me…If I had not run into the dreaded glitches. From what I have actually gotten I would drop down on WipEout HD. The game really does take skill, learning controls, timing and nearly perfecting the game to earn the platinum, when somebody says it is tough, that is no joke.
Lasombra: Do you have a trophy goal for the year? If so, how far are you along in it?
Blazi: I have a few, the biggest would be reaching 3,000 trophies and also to keep a total completion of 80%, which I need to improve on as I am currently about 76%. I’m about 800 trophies away and a few games I need to clean up for the 80% before I start any new games. But these goals aren't nearly as important to me as many other music-related goals.
Lasombra: Do you believe gamers should be allowed to make trophy hunting teams? Why or why not?
Blazi: Yes, honestly, I don't care if they do or do not. There is no need to rule out people who wish to earn trophies with friends on one account they all play on or any other purpose. Let them play how they want to play.
Lasombra: Do you think Sony should create a world database with every user’s PSN trophy info for all to see? Why or why not?
Blazi: No, I don’t think so, Sony may just overload their servers and really, I don’t think I'd like my username out there for all to see as it could get messy.
Lasombra: What tips do you have for someone trying to reach the next level and going after a difficult platinum?
Blazi: The only tips I can give are ones you have all heard before and will all hear again. Number 1: Never give up, no matter how tough it gets. Number 2: If it does get too tough, take a break and do something you enjoy for a while so that you aren't so down and I guarantee you will feel much better when you start playing again.
Lasombra: Regardless of the system, what pre-trophy game would you auto-buy if it was released on the PS3 with trophy support?
Blazi: Really any game I've played in the past that I loved like any Sonic game that doesn’t already have trophy support. Even though I've mostly gotten out of it, I would likely pick up an original Pokemon game. As well as Crash Bandicoot, Spyro the Dragon, Twisted Metal or SSX all come to mind. Any others have already dropped out with their own fancy Collection.
Lasombra: Two previous people I interviewed (DaRe Ep1/EricVoltage Ep5) expressed their musical genius. Are there plans of getting a band together and touring the world?
Blazi: That is quite the plan, being in a huge high school with ~2000 other people, it's quite likely I will be able to find the people I'll need.
Lasombra: Did you learn how to play guitar before Guitar Hero, or was GH a gateway for you into wanting to learn how to play the guitar?
Blazi: Before I had played Guitar Hero, I had never touched a guitar, I thoroughly enjoyed playing it and for a couple reasons I ended up getting an electric bass, which led up to me finally being able to get an electric guitar a couple of years after.
Lasombra: What were the dreaded glitches you ran into in Twisted Metal? Is there now a broken guitar sitting in your bedroom corner because of it?
Blazi: Unfortunately, I am only one of upwards of 100 people that are sitting without the platinum due to simple glitches in the server that don't recognize some stats being obtained from the online portion of the game, even after spending quite a bit of time on them.
Lasombra: Expressing your motivation to platinum/100% all the games you play, if you knew ahead of time that a game was impossible to platinum (Server closure for example) would you still play it or would the lack of a platinum get into your head every time you scroll down your list?
Blazi: Obviously, I have quite a few games on my list that are incomplete, but I didn't really realize how much I liked a clean looking list until it already had some blotches on it from unfinished games. One game I did start playing and didn't realize the servers were closing was NHL 10, so unfortunately that prevents me from ever being able to have a clean list.
Lasombra: Every time I look at your name I keep thinking BlazBlue. Have you ever played the game?
Blazi: I'm not too much into fighting games, but I've heard the series is good. Maybe I’ll try it out one day.
Lasombra: When can we expect you to be an international singing sensation? Have you tried out for Canadian Idol? Have you thought about pulling a Justin Bieber and putting a demo tape on YouTube for all the tween's affection?
Blazi: I would just LOVE to pull another Justin Bieber and flourish to my heart’s content...I'm not so sure my vocals will be striking a world near you anytime soon. The stuff I'm mainly into sadly never makes it far due to the media. As for Canadian Idol, the same thing applies and any other possible TV shows that can turn me into a "star".
Disclaimer: I do not endorse the possible use of sarcasm where it may or may not have occurred.
Lasombra: How have you recovered from your burnout sessions? Jam to some Hendrix? Sing some Anka? Lip sync to Ashley Simpson? Wait...if you lip sync a lip syncer does that mean you are lip syncing silence?
Blazi: Jamming out on my guitar as you could say above and sometimes just relaxing by screwing around with my friends on another game online. Lip syncing to a lip syncer? Quite interesting, I guess you would just be a mute singer.
A cornucopia of sirens break the tension as the situation goes from bizarre to potentially cataclysmic. “So, how about letting us go, you know, since we don’t have the file you’re looking for” Apparently Miss Magnum has a thing for me, and if it wasn’t a gun I’d be worried about V getting jealous and snapping off a very painful bone. A female voice starts talking on a loudspeaker. I’d actually be interested in knowing what she said if we were not in Peru and she was not speaking Spanish. Seriously, we need to get taken hostage in an English speaking country next time in Episode 10: The High Life. “Anyone here speak English…other than the hostage takers? Anyone? Wait, you don’t speak English?” The Siamese twins start speaking Spanish, causing Jean-Luc Picard to face palm himself. “Thank you, Boss, for sending us to interview someone…some people…something…that doesn’t speak English. How do we have ratings anymore?”
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