My friend Nolan Dalla

Posted by on Jul 24, 2012 in Blog | 0 comments

Be warned right away, this has nothing to do with online gaming, but at least the internet is involved.

The setting is Las Vegas, the Mirage Poker room, shortly before midnight in early August. I had been playing limit Texas Holdem for a while already, when a new player comes into the room and is sent to our table. He looked familiar from afar, and when he sat down across from me, it became clear. It was Nolan Dalla, the poker author. I knew him, he didn’t know me, nor did he know that I knew him. So I was waiting for a chance to introduce myself. In poker, the best chance to introduce yourself is after you beat somebody in a hand. Which I did. I think. It’s been a while.

A good number of years ago, make it 20, I was bitten by a bug. The gambling bug. I had come across  a few articles on the internet telling me that blackjack was beatable and how to do it. Some research brought me to the usenet group rec.gambling. Blackjack lost its charm quickly, since the casinos don’t like you if you know what you are doing. Which brought me to poker, the other subject the usenet group was discussing.

At that time, say 1995, you weren’t a serious poker player if you didn’t read Cardplayer Magazine. One of the columns I read regularly was “Tales From the Felt” by Nolan Dalla. It was only a small surprise to see him participating in the discussions on rec.gambling.*. The group of people discussing poker in a serious, almost scientific approach was small and if you were halfway internet savvy, you’d end up in this group.

To top it off, this group’s been meeting annually in Las Vegas for 22 years now. It’s called BARGE. Most of the time we’ve met downtown, since the majority of people were students on a budget when it all started. Not so much anymore, since a couple of them have become rich and famous, winning World Series of Poker bracelets, becoming poker commentators, .com millionaires or are helping out on Wall Street. Some of them succeeded in more than one field.

Over the years I’ve met Nolan at every BARGE I participated in and a few times on other occasions. He’s always come across as a smart man with many interests and a career in the US foreign service. Which gives me the European connection to him, since he’s been stationed in Romania in 1989 when their regime came down in a bloody conflict. What are you going to do in an embassy while the world outside turns upside down? Host a poker game and make contact with the rebels. And meet his future wife Marieta, a Romanian native.

Nolan is now Communications Director for the World Series of Poker. He’s  published the biography of Stu Ungar, 3 time winner of the World Series of Poker main event and tragic genius. It’s titled “One of a Kind”.

I am glad to help Nolan Dalla with his next undertaking, a blog to publish his writings of many years. Writings that go far beyond the poker essays I know, travel reports, the events of the Romanian revolution, politics (after all, he has a degree in Political Science) and much more. I am looking forward to read many more of his essays and to learn more what’s going on in his mind.

See for yourself at www.nolandalla.com

 



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Objectivist Gamer

Posted by on Jan 5, 2012 in Blog, Current Games, Star Wars: The Old Republic, World of Warcraft | 0 comments

While playing last night, somebody mentioned in chat the usual “SWTOR plays like WOW” and of course started a small storm. What was different this time, it wasn’t just a troll, but a gaming writer who was reviewing the game. Which of course gives the discussion an entirely new dimension.

I can certainly see where the opinion comes from: There are many aspects which are very similar, for instance the user interface and the skill tree. But that is a good thing. Every MMO player wants to be able to type /who, or find the social menu bound to the O key, as well as configurable hotkey bars. But there are enough differences aside from the voice dialogues which make SWTOR stand out over WOW.

In any case, I didn’t want to start a lengthy rant, but wanted to point to a site of a professional game reviewer and to his work. Most of his reviews cover the general gaming area and much less MMOs. That, by itself is an interesting fact, since obviously SWTOR pulls in Bioware’s RPG fanbase with their familiar story driven games, just like WOW brought Blizzards RTS crowd into the MMO mixture.

I am looking forward to his review and his viewpoint.


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Trademarks are the property of their respective owners. LucasArts, the LucasArts logo, STAR WARS and related properties are trademarks in the United States and/or in other countries of Lucasfilm Ltd. and/or its affiliates. © 2008-2011 Lucasfilm Entertainment Company Ltd. or Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved. BioWare and the BioWare logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of EA International (Studio and Publishing) Ltd. You may not copy any images, videos or sound clips found on this site or "deep link" to any image, video or sound clip directly.
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Bio Break

Posted by on Dec 21, 2011 in Current Games, Fallen Earth, Star Wars: The Old Republic, World of Warcraft | 0 comments

Bio Break is a blog written by a gamer named Syd who’s been wandering the MMORPG world for quiet a while and has seen a decent number of games. Someday I’ll compare the list of games I’ve played with Syd’s list. His is similar to mine, but mine seems to start earlier.

As many players at the moment, he’s started to play SWTOR and is writing about it. See for yourself for his recent exploits. Worth mentioning is also his long blogroll, which forces me to follow each single one of them.


© Disclaimer: Fallen Earth
© Disclaimer: Star Wars: The Old Republic
This site is not endorsed by or affiliated with LucasArts, BioWare, or Electronic Arts.
Trademarks are the property of their respective owners. LucasArts, the LucasArts logo, STAR WARS and related properties are trademarks in the United States and/or in other countries of Lucasfilm Ltd. and/or its affiliates. © 2008-2011 Lucasfilm Entertainment Company Ltd. or Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved. BioWare and the BioWare logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of EA International (Studio and Publishing) Ltd. You may not copy any images, videos or sound clips found on this site or "deep link" to any image, video or sound clip directly.
Game content and materials copyright LICENSOR. All Rights Reserved.

© Disclaimer: World of Warcraft

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