With BlizzCon Opening Week and BlizzCon 2018 coming up, I’m back in California to do press and media coverage of the convention. I drove from Las Vegas to Southern California a little bit earlier than originally anticipated because I had some tasks to take care of, but that extra time in California meant I got to do some other stuff as well. One of my aunts and uncles from my dad’s side of the family live in Southern California up in the mountains. I’m usually not a huge fan of driving to their home there because there are a lot of winding unpaved roads on the climb up, but since I got a pick-up truck a few months ago, I decided to try out the drive again. In the past, my drives up and down were moderately intimidating because I was in tiny, short rental vehicles with poor engine power, but the drive up this time felt like a breeze.
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The Tempest Awards, part of this year’s Esports Business Summit, conveniently took place at Esports Arena Las Vegas, just barely over 10 miles away from where I live. Robert Del Papa, Chief Business Development Officer of Tempo Storm, was nominated to receive an award at the ceremony, so I accompanied him to capture some photos of the event.
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In my endless string of travels, not too long after returning to Las Vegas from my visit to the Chicagoland suburbs, I made my way over to Southern California again for a bit more Tempo Storm related work. While in the area, I drove over to visit one of my co-workers and had a photo shoot with his cat, Waffles.
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As we wind down to the final moments of Legion, I decided to go back through some of my more recent screenshots and share my final memories from the expansion. I’ve mostly been doing a lot of older content lately because one of my co-workers recently came back to World of Warcraft for the first time in several years and I’ve been joining him as he relives some of the older expansions that were released after he stopped playing. But, during the time I haven’t been crawling through ancient dungeons and raids, I’ve been scrambling to try and get the last bits of Legion content done before Battle for Azeroth hits the live servers. Unlocking both allied races, Void Elf and Lightforged Draenei: Finally hitting Prestige Level 1 (I haven’t really spent much time in PvP this expansion): Getting Exalted in Highmountain Tribe, my last reputation before completing Exalted in all factions: Completing the artifact weapon storyline for my two alternate specializations, Holy and Discipline: Maxing out my reputation with Chromie (though I still haven’t finished her quest storyline):
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I’m not a huge fan of conventions or events, but our PUBG team came to Las Vegas to compete in the PUBG Pan-Continental, so I figured this would be a good opportunity for me to go out and capture some photos of them during the event. The event took place at the PokerGO Studio, which is right by the Aria in CityCenter. However, just because I’m a Las Vegas resident now doesn’t mean I know exactly where everything is – especially on the Strip, because I live and always linger around the suburbs. I proceeded to roam around getting lost for a good half hour (nearly accidentally taking the tram to an entirely different area of the Strip) before finally making it to the studio. This tournament was a multi-day event, and the manager (the one who ate the Fritos a few days ago) let me know that the studio wasn’t really that crowded. Keeping that in consideration, I showed up today… and realized the place was completely packed. After asking the manager why he baited me, he said that today was the final day, which is probably why more people showed up. I began snapping photos of the venue and our players, and I eventually had to leave the competition area when the games started. The studio was literally so packed that I didn’t even have a place to sit, and I was actually considering leaving early… which I’m glad I did not, because Tempo Storm ended up winning the whole thing.
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Jordan King, one of my co-workers at Tempo Storm, left the comfort of his cornfield hometown of Lincoln, Nebraska to visit Los Angeles. Humorously, flights from Omaha directly to Los Angeles were over double the price of flights to Las Vegas, so he decided to fly into Las Vegas first to visit me, then we took a road trip to Southern California. Along the way, we decided to stop by Zzyzx, an unincorporated community in the Mojave National Preserve, and a hot tourist spot for people traveling through the desert. I’ve driven to and from Los Angeles and Las Vegas a handful of times already, so I obviously have seen Zzyzx on the map and passed signs for Zzyzx while on the freeway, but I never actually bothered to stop; I felt this would be a good opportunity to experience it for the first time with Jordan. While traveling down Zzyzx Road towards the California State University Desert Studies Center, we saw “majestic creatures of the rock,” as Jordan called them (I believe they are officially named bighorn sheep, though I’m not entirely sure). It was quite unexpected, as there aren’t really too many wild animals in Las Vegas where I live. After we visited the Desert Studies Center and started making our way back to the freeway, they were still there and bravely stood their ground against my rental truck, so we were able to get some pretty good close-up shots of them. After the animals headed back up into the hills, we proceeded until we found a good spot where Jordan could head out deeper into the desert and collect some small rocks to bring back home to Nebraska for his daughter. He grabbed two small black rocks that had originally been located somewhere near 35°09’16″N, 116°06’20″W. I haven’t been vlogging too much lately, but I remembered to bring my camera with me, so I cut together some clips, starting from picking Jordan up from McCarran International Airport and concluding with departing Zzyzx.
Full photo album: https://www.flickr.com/photos/adamparkzer/sets/72157667844122227