Hi, TA'ers! This week, our special guest is OdinElite
, a competitive athlete, sportsman, and family man. Let's all give him a big welcome.B1ue: Hi, Odin!
Hi, Blue. B1ue: Gamertags usually have something to say about their owners. Tell us about yours.
I do a lot of competitive powerlifting and strongman competitions. Due to my ancestry and the way I look, a lot of my friends starting call me "The Viking," and then it turned into "Odin." So when I first got a 360, I knew my tag had to incorporate that somehow. I could not just do "Odin," and since I was playing on a 360 Elite at the time, I naturally just threw "Elite" on the end, thinking, "I'll figure something out later; I just want to hurry up and get on and play with my buddies."B1ue: Looks like the name stuck.
How long have you been gaming?
I have been gaming for as long as I can remember. My dad came home with an NES one day and hooked it up. I was probably still in diapers at the time. I was actually scared at first; I thought it was some crazy Tom Cruise witchcraft. Then my dad handed me the controller, and ever since then I've been the greatest threat to Koopa-kind.B1ue: Tom Cruise witchcraft?
It's a Ricky Bobby movie reference. B1ue: Do others in your family game?
No one in my family really "games." Others in my family have systems and may play every now and then, but they aren't gamers.B1ue: What does your significant other have to say about your gaming?
My wife isn't very fond of it; however, we have a pretty good balance. There have been times when I spent too much time playing. As long as those are few and far between, we are okay. This is a hobby, one I love very much, but at the end of the day, she is the most important part of my life. I don't want to come off as preaching or sound like I'm "holier than thou," but I do want to take this opportunity to point out something. I know several people on Live that have had issues with their significant others. Some got it squared away; a lot didn't. Sometimes we just need to step back and refocus on what is really important. B1ue: That's remarkably good advice. I do think that we can lose perspective sometimes.
What do you do for a living?
I am a commercial manager for a heavy equipment manufacturer, specifically in the large mining products division. I have responsibility for one of our large mining truck models. My role is to support those products worldwide. Our field force will generally contact me looking for information to provide to a customer or ask me to come out to the mine site and perform a study. I'll measure aspects of the mine such as best maintenance practices or industry best practices, fleet match and utilization, as well as overall performance and how to control costs, so the customer can achieve the best cost per ton possible. B1ue: I've never known anyone in that business. It sounds interesting.
What other hobbies do you enjoy?
As stated earlier, I enjoy competitive power lifting and strongman events. I have let up on it a bit in the past couple years. It really became like a second job. My OCD definitely flourished during that time. I decided it was best to focus on lifting as something for a release instead of a hyper-competitive hobby. It was fun, and winning was exhilarating. However, I was sacrificing a lot of time with the wife, and we are going to have kids (hopefully soon). If I'm going to be as good of a father as mine was, then I was going to have to tailor back my time in the gym. Now I go and focus on quick workouts with the core exercises.
I also do a lot of shooting. I have a lot of friends that do trap or skeet shooting, and that can be fun. However, I enjoy long-range rifle shooting and pistols. I have a pretty extensive collection of firearms, including some rifles that most people of the site are a little familiar with: ACR, SCAR, M39 EBR as well as some others. I enjoy pistols the most though.
Me with my ACR during a recent tactical rifle class.B1ue: Gosh, you sound like a busy guy. When did you have time to accumulate so much gamerscore? ;-P
Well, I spent some time on nights in the past. Gave me great perspective on life in general.B1ue: Tell us about your home life.
I have already mentioned my wife, and we don't have any children yet. We have been married nearly seven years. We generally attend some marriage strengthening counseling with the church every six months to a year. I recommend it to anyone reading this. It is a great way to open the lines of communication and help be proactive in the marriage. It can be really fun, too.
We also have three dogs, all rescues. We have a husky mix, a beagle mix, and our newest edition we aren't sure of yet. He is pretty intelligent and looks like he may have some shepard in him. We go to the dog park a lot. I love dogs, and it is a great release for me.B1ue: Of what real life achievement are you most proud? Would you give us some details?
Definitely proud of my marriage. I love my wife, and we have already beat the odds in this day and age for how long a marriage lasts.
I'm also pretty proud of being able to shoot out the center of a man-sized silhouette (target) at 15 yards. It's really rewarding to be able to place all the rounds in the center X ring at 15 yards with a pistol. However, I am definitely not an expert by any means. I still have a long way to go and look like an amateur next to some of the instructors I have trained with.
If I was to single out one specific achievement in my life that I am the most proud of, it would be the last competitive power lifting competition I did a few years back. Being able to hit a certain amount of weight in the gym is great, but doing it at an event is different. You have a judge watching your every movement, waiting for a reason to fail the lift. You have to earn it. At this particular competition, I weighed in at 241 lbs. I ended up squatting 550 lbs, benching 440 lbs and deadlifting 615 lbs.B1ue: Wow! That's amazing! Very nice work indeed. Is that not...painful? And I love that about your marriage. It sounds like you two really have it together.
Yes, power lifting can be very hard on the body. You're almost never "100%," but it is also incredibly rewarding.B1ue: What part of the world do you live in? If I were to visit, what sights would I have to see?
I live in Central Illinois. If you were to visit, you would see a lot of corn and soy. You would also probably hit a deer or two if you were not used to driving in the Midwest. There is also a museum nearby dedicated to one of the, if not the, greatest president in U.S. history; Mr. Abraham Lincoln.B1ue: What’s your favorite game of all time on any console? What makes it special?
Odin: Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
. There are three games that are almost unanimously believed to be in the top five games of all time: Super Mario Bros. 3, Final Fantasy 7, and Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
. If you haven't played them, then you need to. You can't call yourself a (console) gamer if you haven't.
What makes it special is it is truly a masterpiece. The story is your basic hero cycle/ journey/monomyth. However, LoZ differentiates itself by devoting so much attention to details such as music, dialogue, character development, and story. The game really has great pace, too. I loved the way Zelda was integrated into the story, as well. She wasn't just some frightened princess scared for her life.B1ue: Do you remember the first game you played? What’s your fondest memory of it?
Odin: Super Mario Bros
. for the NES. My fondest memory is getting on top of the stage in 1-2 and bypassing the entire level and finding the warp zones. I felt like I outsmarted the game.B1ue: If some evil spell allowed you to own only a single game for the rest of your life, what would it be? Why?
Odin: Phantasy Star Online
would be in the running, especially if the online special events/missions were available. That would put its replay value through the roof. I haven't played PSO 2, but if it is as good as the first, that would be it. Forgetting about those two caveats because they are "what if" answers, I would have to say The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
. You have to pick a game with replay value, and it is an amazing game.B1ue: Any games you regret putting on your gamertag?
Odin: Dance Dance Revolution
for sure. My wife wanted to play it, and it was when I didn't know much about achievements. Awful, awful game.B1ue: If you were forced to change your gamertag, what would you change it to? What does the new tag reflect about you?
It would just be "Odin." I would drop the "Elite" because I feel like some people see that and immediately think I'm some arrogant try hard.B1ue: I think you're being a bit hard on yourself. It doesn't sound arrogant to me.
What about your gamer pic. Why did you choose that one?
One of my guilty pleasures is getting on youtube and watching MLG [Major League Gaming] videos. I enjoy watching Halo
, COD, and Street Fighter
. It is amazing how good these individuals are and the deep technical expertise they have developed. Instinct became known as the "God Squad" when they picked up the best Halo
player at the time and the winningest player in Halo
history. So, you ended up with a team that had the top four players on the scene. They crushed everyone; it was the closest thing to cheating you could get without actually doing so.B1ue: Do you have any particular gaming pet peeves?
Any issues related to a mic: buzzing, background noise, boom too close/too far, echoing, etc. Those are easily fixable though. Either get the mute or the boot.B1ue: What upcoming game are you most looking forward to?
Probably whatever Batman game Rocksteady is so secretly working on. If it is anything like the first two, then it is just going to walk on stage at E3 and drop the mic.B1ue: What game are you most proud of completing? Why?
Probably Devil May Cry 4
. The Bloody Palace was harsh and unforgiving. It was really demoralizing to get close to the end and lose.B1ue: If you found yourself dropped into a video game, which video game character would you most want to have your back?
I know there are a lot of obvious choices here. Dante from DMC because he's OP, Master Chief because he's unstoppable or some other Godly character like Deadpool or Boba Fett. Those are all great choices, but I would have to go with Shadow from Dead to Rights
. He always has your back, loves you unconditionally, and like any other police/military dog, he only wants to tear out the throats of those that mean you harm. That's why I love dogs. B1ue: In the same scenario, what character/creature would you most/least like to see headed your way?
Claptrap. I love the little turd, but he is always getting into trouble.B1ue: Any characters you would like seen thrown into video game hell?
Antagonists that don't die after multiple events. Video games are fantasy, but when you create a "realistic" game, you have to take into consideration how the antagonist would be able to survive certain events. Example, a game recently had the antagonist get shot in the chest point blank with a .44 magnum and then fall into the ocean only to swim to shore and best you for a cliffhanger. Really!? Do these developers have any clue about how much trauma that gun can cause? Even if he has a vest, you are still looking at enough damage that the individual isn't going to swim to shore. SMH. End rant.B1ue: Ever had any bad experiences online? How did you handle it?
I think everyone has had those experiences where someone calls you a name or hates on you because of gamerscore. I think the worst experiences can be when you find like-minded people and boost with them only to find out they are self-centered and only concerned about their own achievements. That again is an easy fix though; those people end up alienating themselves and get the boot.B1ue: Do you prefer single player or multi-player?
: I prefer MP, specifically co-op. I am a team-oriented guy and love playing on teams. When my friends are successful, I am successful.B1ue: Do you have a favorite group of friends you like to play with? If so, how did you meet?
I have some buddies I play with a lot. Most of them I met through boosting sessions, but a couple I met randomly online.B1ue: If you could have a multi-player session with anyone in the world, whom would you choose? Why?
Someone high on the food chain at Nintendo, so I could present a business case on why they should make multi-platform games (and possibly forgo the console war). Or at least make me project manager of the next Zelda game...B1ue: Oh, man, I'm all for that.
What other consoles do you own? What are your favorites on those platforms?
I still own all my old consoles. The Gamecube had some great games that a lot of people either never heard of or didn't play because they were GCN exclusive. I think the Resident Evil
remake was an absolute masterpiece. It developed the story further and was visually stunning. Eternal Darkness
is still one of the most memorable games for me. I have never played anything like it.
A sample of my museum. Some of the best games from previous generations. Can you spot the first (somewhat) survival horror game?B1ue: I loved my Gamecube; I wish they had made more games for it.
Tell us about your gaming set-up.
I have an LG 42" set up in my basement. I felt like that was the optimal size given how far away I sit. I have four 360's set up. If you couldn't tell from pictures, I'm a bit of a collector. ****************
****************Favorite 360 game?Halo 4Favorite non-360 game?Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of TimeLeast favorite game?Phantasy Star UniverseFavorite game developer?
Rockstar...there are always going to be issues with games; they do whatever it takes to make it right by the customer.Favorite game weapon?
Gravity Hammer...up close and personalMost hated game enemy?
Insert ridiculous Quick Time Event boss name here...Favorite game character?
LinkFavorite game sidekick?
Any four-legged furry friendFavorite game ending?Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell ConvictionMost hated game ending?Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3Favorite game music?LoZ: Ocarina of Time**********************
*End of Lightning Round*
**********************B1ue: Is there anything I haven’t asked that you want to talk about?
The Easter Eggs articles featured on the site...Dust: An Elysian Tail
should be the next one...just saying...B1ue: Any shout-outs you want to make before we go?
Thanks to all my friends that helped me get to where I am - too many people to name. I've got some great people on my friends list, many of which I can just sit in a party and run my jibs with, and I'm thankful for all of them.
And that's it, guys and girls. Thanks so much to OdinElite for taking the time to tell us a little about himself. Come back in a couple of weeks for our next guest, boydo1990
Come and see me, and...let's talk.