Monday, August 19, 2013

ESCAPE Room at e@Curve

Before I begin, this is not the Ipoh post. If you wanna read about my road trip, do click here :)

So if you know me, I always love to go for laser tag. It's one of those in-mall entertainments which gets my adrenaline rushing and heart pumping. However one day I was walking with my friends after buying a movie at e@Curve and saw this place called Escape Room. It was intriguing but we didn't have the time to try it. So I went with another group of friends recently. Oh by the way, you need to book a room to ensure that you will get it. You also can walk in if there's no one using the room.

So basically, you will be locked in a room with more locks and clues and you have to find your way out within 45 minutes. Sounds easy, really. But the success rate is not high and 45 minutes isn't long either. So we paid RM28 per person as students and got locked in the Abandoned Factory. What I imagined was a big arena like the ones for laser tag but to explain the many rooms available to play which are like Pirate Ship, Slaughter House, The Mysterious Room, The Mummy, Prison Break and Pirate Ship, they're each literally an Escape Room. You will be in more or less 2 rooms. No running around, but solve the clues given in each room.

So I was in with another 4 friends and the first task was easy. When we got to the next, it was confusing. Having a vast amount of knowledge actually distracts you more as the tip of the year is to just play it simple and straightforward. For us, there were mathematical and chemistry stuff and we took each clue literally and wasted our time doing the non obvious, hence, we failed.

In the end, the guys in charge there told us how to solve it. Thank God, if not I wont be able to sleep for a night thinking what we have missed, and at that moment we all felt very dumb as the clues were actually, like I said, very straightforward.

It was a good experience, especially to those who like to play these games because its quite tricky and you can actually learn a lot from the way they arrange the clues and etc. If you love puzzles, you would love this. But for me personally, I'll still choose laser tag because of its price and not enough adrenaline rush. Would I come back again? Yes, to try out the other rooms. :)

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Friday, August 16, 2013

Bringing Friends around KL

And again, I was on an unintentional hiatus status for my blog. Clearly I am inconsistent in blogging though ironically i love to tell my stories about the places i go, the food I eat or the crazy things that happen around me. But besides blogging, there is one medium that you can see my stories, which is my instagram. I find it too easy and and qucik to share whats going on using instagram. Why? Because it has a photo of what I see, a caption for a story and even a foursquare check-in so that you can know where am I. So do follow me on instagram, even if you dont know me and love to find out new places to eat or to just chill, at

But nevertheless, I am not just going to end my post like that. Throughout my silence in this paid domain blog, lots has happened and lots has been learnt. I got nothing much to talk about my uni, so im gonna tell you what I did during this summer break.

So it started off, in uni actually. We were in our lecture hall when we were also looking at cheap flights for my friends, from Sabah to KL. Their Malaysian Airlines flight for 2 ways was just only RM137. So they came for 11 days, wandering around the busy city life of KL, and we travelled up north to the serene beaches of Langkawi.

On the night of my dad's birthday, my dear angel with another friend arrived at KLIA. It was about half past 12 midnight when we drove off, and as I saw a heavy jam on the highway back, I decided to detour to Putrajaya. To be honest, Putrajaya and Kuala Lumpur are the best places to see at night because of its lights, especially Putrajaya where it is not as busy as Kuala Lumpur and its federal buildings have their own unique design and architecture. Sadly by midnight, they start to off some of the lights to save electricity. So we hang out at the Putrajaya Bridge, a normal hangout place for most people there, to have some air and see the bridge change colour every moment.

The next morning, I got up earlier than the others to send my mom to our new home which was still under renovation that time. It was almost ready and we were about to move in within a weeks time so my mom had to stay there for a day to make sure everything is placed properly before the final touch up. Then I went to pick the others from home to have breakfast with Adrian in Glenmarie. We had a variety of chicken and pork rice which tasted great but it was kinda pricey too. I forgot how much we paid for everything but it was about RM15 per person after we split the share. You be the judge.

Soon, we were off to KL to check in our "executive suite". Duta Vista along Jalan Duta has been there for many years now. I have been celebrating my birthdays there since I was about 7 years old and until now, which I'll be 21 this December, still stands the good old hotel. It's quite run down but why I still go there is because of the space. A 2 floor suite with 2 bedrooms, 3 toilets, a kitchen, living room and dining room is a great place to hang out with a bunch of friends. The reason why we still have it is because my parents bought time sharing with that hotel or it's group of hotels, Tanco Resorts. Nevertheless, we had a great time there. (Yes they do have a penguin there, but during my 7th birthday, they actually had penguinS there)

After settling down, we headed to Bukit Bintang. If I were to bring people new to KL, it will always have to start with Bukit Bintang. Why? Its because you can cover at least 7 malls within the day there, and they're all within a walking distance! The journey always starts from Berjaya Times Square. From there you can walk to Low Yat, Sungei Wang, Lot 10 which has an awesome food court, Fahrenheit 88, Pavillion and finally, KLCC, the landmark of Kuala Lumpur. You can eat, shop and sight see all in one area.

The next day, we spent the whole day at Challenge Park, Putrajaya. It is my favorite spot for rock climbing. If you have a student card, entry fee per day is only RM3. Normal entry is just RM6. Rental of shoes and harness with the belay device are add ons, but if you go with experience climbers who can belay you, you dont need to rent the guy to belay you. By the way, belayers are those anchors who are on the ground holding your rope in case you fall while climbing. So yeah, we were encouraging our friends who were giving it a go for the first time. It was great and tiring at the same time, not to mention, we were making Xinh Guan's birthday card there while he was climbing! The best part was, he didnt realise it at all!

The idea was like this. We rock climb, go back to the hotel to shower and wait for everyone to go out for dinner. Manyi parked her car at my house in Subang, so I had an excuse to not be part of the group and handle the birthday surprise. Well because we were supposed to reach the hotel late, we even hanged around the Ramadan Bazaar in front of my house. Manyi, Hsiu Chin and Aivee went to buy the cake and pizza while me and Carmen went back to the hotel, empty handed. So if ever Xinh Guan was expecting a birthday surprise, there was none. Oh ya, Manyi, Hsiu and Aivee said that they would not be joining us for dinner. So technically everyone was back already. To make the wait even longer, me and Carmen took a shower.

Sooner or later, the 3 girls arrived at the hotel. I walked out and Xinh Guan still didnt realise or suspect anything, and we just barged in the front door singing Happy Birthday while the others were watching tv. It was a well planned surprise.

So it was Sunday and it was quite a letdown. We headed to my favorite pasta place in Kelana Jaya called, Secret of Louisiana. During lunch hour, like from 12pm to 3pm, they will serve pasta buffet. It's like you pay RM15 something or 18, its definitely lower than RM20, and you will get bottomless Ice Lemon Tea, Soup, Salad, Coffee or Tea and 1 scoop of ice cream in the end. The main course is a choice of 8 different types of pasta. Yes it's a buffet served by plate. After you finish one plate, only then they will serve the next. But the worse part was, they close on Sundays. I should have taken note, but oh well.

So we then went straight to IOI mall where we wanted to play laser tag as usual. We first had lunch in Esquire Kitchen.When we went to laser tag, they were closed for a private event! Oh the frustrations. We then decided to go to Sunway Pyramid's Laser Tag, which is technically more expensive than IOI mall. In Pyramid, 2 games costs about RM45. In IOI mall, unlimited games can be bought for about RM55. I guess you can see which is more worth. However, I like Pyramid's arena more. It's bigger and there are additional items to shoot such as a giant snake or some markers on the wall, but their gun is not that nice. IOI mall has a better gun in the sense that you can change modes and actually see your score on the gun itself. The verdict, i'll still go to IOI mall instead of Pyramid.

Our dinner was at Tony Roma's. Not much to say, just western food I guess. Sorry but I enjoy Chinese food alot more. Im a rice or noodle person. hee :)

We got up really early the next day, like about 6.30am because we had to catch a bus from my house to get to KL Sentral for a 10.05am train to Ipoh, which is also Xinh Guan's home town. I think that was the longest sentence that I ever written. Anyway, I'll tell you more about what happened in Ipoh in an new post. I guess it's too boring to read the whole 11 day trip in one blog post.

Take Care.

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Tuesday, July 09, 2013

On hiatus again?

Hello world! well it seems this blog's owner has been on hiatus for a whole semester of his university. The 2nd semester was much heavier compared to the first semester because things get more serious as we get used to the environment there. Anyway before i continue blogging more, hopefully, this is a video I recently recorded of Beatnation's A-Team performing live at Subang Rally 2013, Infinite Love! Enjoy this one :)

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Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Creating a Budget Music Video

download this track at

Being all inspired to make videos with my new Canon EOS 60D has got me hyped up to make a video before my semester break ends. At times, I will day dream stories in my head about the videos I can produce. It’s easy to imagine stories, but it’s hard to write scripts and to record the video itself.

I won’t say that I have professional equipment but I know it’s sufficient. In this post, I’m just going to talk about how I made my MV just to share my thoughts and knowledge with you. My equipment line up was simple.

  1. Canon EOS 60D
  2. Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS (kit lens)
  3. Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II (cheapest Canon lens in the market, but awesome)
  4. Tamron 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5 (discount on
  5. Zoom H1 (cheapest range but great quality by brand)
  6. 160 LED Video Light (cheap light)
  7. A few tripods and gorillapods.

Zoom H1

Samsung Galaxy S2 Metronome Beats

I’ll be honest. This is actually more than enough to make a good video. I’ve seen people out there like Dreambitious, The Salad Show and other college film productions making great videos with just a dSLR and their kit lenses only. But if I have these lenses so, why not use them?

Before making the video, we needed the soundtrack to be the backbone of our video. Aaron a.k.a. A.RON wanted to do a cover by Teddy Geiger, For You I Will. Do note that this video was only made by me and Aaron. I went to Aaron’s house to do the audio recording. We set up the Zoom H1 onto a tripod at the corner of his room and padded its surroundings with pillows and blankets. This was done to prevent echoes from bouncing back on the walls. To prevent any other external sounds, we turned the fan off and also the air conditioner.

All of the sounds were recorded separately. For instance this acoustic cover involved 1 guitar and 1 vocal recorded separately. A pair of headphones was plugged into the Zoom H1 for monitoring purposes. In one ear, Aaron also plugged in another earphone as that was used as a metronome. The metronome was an Android App on my Samsung Galaxy S2 called Metronome Beats. It was used to make sure that his timing was accurate which makes editing and post processing easier.

The earphone was added under the headphone. 

Basically, one instrument must be recorded on perfect timing before another instrument or vocals come in. If you record for a band, the drummer will do his recording first before the other instruments and the vocals will be last. In this case, we recorded Aaron playing the guitar first while guided by the metronome.
For the vocal recording, we used the recording of the guitar instead of the metronome in the earphones. The headphones as usual was for him to monitor himself during the recording. Both recordings were then combined and added with certain sound effects.

On another day after the song was ready, we started shooting our MV. We decided to go to Sunway Pyramid car park roof top to shoot. It was a cloudy day, but dramatic too. We had no script as we just wanted to shoot random scenes. I think this isn’t a good idea as it’s always better to have a script ready. Doing that will save a lot of time. Another tip for creating an MV is to always have a backbone track. A backbone track, in my terms, means to have a full video of that song taken in one take. It doesn’t matter if it’s a still or on a dolly, but just have one video rolling throughout the song. This is a backup plan during post production as sometimes when editing, you will find out that you don’t have enough scenes, you can just take any from the backbone scenes. Backbone scenes also can be used as main scenes, intro and outro too.

Above: Shooting a scene on the roof top
Below: I use Magic Lantern in my 60D

Do check online or magazines to learn good camera angles, rule of thirds or many other tips in filming. A normal advice is to always keep your camera as stable as possible, which I still need to work on a lot. It is advised to use lenses with Image Stabilizers as much as possible. Do take note that post processing is important in making an interesting video. My thought at first was to not apply colour correction at all to my video to keep it natural, but instead I decided to add leave colour and set a cool temperature to my video. It’s all up to you.

This was what I had in my mind while doing and learning from making an MV. I hardly read articles on videos and photography, which is a bad thing, as I prefer to try things on my own and learn from them. If you have any more tips or suggestions to improve my video, do comment below.


If you notice, there was a lot of jitters in my video during motion. This was a known irreversible error in the video editor. Fixing it will result in redoing the whole video again. This is one downside of this MV. 

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Saturday, February 09, 2013

Chasing the First Sun of 2013

It has been so long since I blogged, and I truly believe that I have said this so many times. Perhaps I'm not committed to this blog, or I'm just not the writer type and love to just take photos instead. But to be honest, I love to share my stories to anyone. As I always believed, I live life by experience compared to books or by just sitting at home or being in a classroom. Of course all mentioned just now are as important as they exist, but not as effective as living a dream or breaking boundaries in your life. Nevertheless, I will keep trying to blog and submit articles to magazines, hoping that it brings good to myself and others, and improve in my own writing skills.

As every year goes by, a new year is always felt as an event where we change or plan to be better throughout that new year. People will list down their new year resolutions and plans to whatever they dream of. As for me, my goal is to keep up with my results, improve my literacy, social and be more fit and stronger. If you know me, I'm called a stick or Pai Kuat, which means pork ribs. There's nothing to worry if you call me that, I'm an open person and not offended easily.

Now back to my story. The celebration of the new year, 2013 just passed as if it wasn't a new year. It just felt like a new day as it is everyday. It could be because of 2 things. One is that my university semester ends at the end of January, and the continuity of classes and studies made it felt as if it was a routine. Before this, school holidays made Christmas and New Year bold, but looking forward to exams that are coming made it feel as if it was just another day. Another reason could be that I didn't sleep that whole night during the new year. Me and a few friends rented 2 cars and decided to chase the sun.

On the last night of 2012, we left our campus at about 7pm headed towards BDC in Kuching for BBQ Steamboat Buffet. The restaurant name was Swan Teem BBQ Steamboat. If you click the link, it will bring you directly to its Foursquare page for you to easily locate :) They have a wide variety of meat like pork and chicken, some are plain meat or you can also choose the marinated ones which taste better. They serve assorted fishballs or I would call them, flour products, because these kind of food are mostly made of flour. You can barbecue them or boil them in the steamboat. Their cooking pot is unique that the center is used for steamboat and its sides are the grill for the barbecue. Usually the soup is just water so if you plan to go there, do bring your own seasoning or if you will like it to do it our way, you can try this method.

Boil the broth with a piece of lamb in it. Add some pepper and break egg into the soup. It will taste delicious.

We were eating there till about 10pm when we decided to go to Boulevard for some fireworks. We lined up at Ding Tea for a good beverage. I had Hazelnut Milk Tea as I love hazelnut drinks. If you're interested in their menu, here's one from Google.

We were chilling outside in the drizzle, waiting for the fireworks to go out. It was packed and you could see the fire department standing by in case anything went wrong. At the end of the countdown, we saw fireworks light up the sky. It's not as magnificent as those you see in USA, but this is all we have and as long as it makes the locals, or just anyone happy, its good enough. :) I myself was happy to spend time watching it with my loved one :) Happy New Year! :D

Moving on, we went to another mall called The Spring to catch a movie at MBO. We watched Les Miserables, a musical, which caught me by surprise. Though feeling tired late at night and the movie may be a bit slow, it was a great movie after all. It would be much better to see it live, but it had a great plot and the songs were sang very well.

At around 4am, we were at McDonalds, Kuching for breakfast. There and then, we decided to go to Bako, where the national park is located, to watch the sunrise. The journey was in pitch black. We were driving on trunk roads with no street lights and we were the only cars there. The most interesting part was that we didnt really know where to go. We were looking at Google Maps, trying to guess which way may lead to a beach by the South China Sea, facing East. We got stuck in a village, attempted to drive up a hill and sink into a mud road, which we didn't. We kept searching through the tarmac until we found a spot by the beach. It wasn't perfect, but it was the best we could find. I tagged that place on Foursquare and if you're lucky enough, you may catch the perfect sunrise here.

We were unlucky that day. The night before that was rainy so the day was filled with clouds. We did not see any orange sunrise but just a blue cloudy sky. It was quite upsetting, but on the bright side, we discovered a place we can go and see the sunrise next time. The place is filled with lots and lots of mosquitoes. You will be surprised yourself. It was a swarm of mosquitoes that you can see them hitting your car windscreen when the day got brighter. In the dark when we got down of our cars, we just kept getting bitten constantly. So a piece of advice, park your car nicely and do not get down of your car. :)

When the sky was bright enough, we headed back to the city for our second round of breakfast. I brought my group of friends to a good Wan Tan Mee shop suggested by my friend Calvyn and Hobbes, I mean Rachel, his girlfriend.. Haha. The place was called Master Bong Cafe. This was actually my second time here.. The noodles here have a very good texture, heard it was made out of duck egg and not chicken egg. Their pork is tasty and they have dumplings too, which are just ok. Their Chee Cheong Fun with prawns is good too. A highlight of Kuching if you're looking for food :)

At about 8am, we headed back to campus for a good shower and a long afternoon sleep :) 13 hours of driving did pay off :) Theres nothing wrong if you don't sleep a whole night, but spending it well with a bunch of good people. Don't just sit at home, go out and do something :)

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