Monday, July 13, 2015

Clash of Clans: How to download and play CoC on a Windows PC desktop

Or phrased in a better way, how to install Clash of Clans (CoC) on a PC without being asked to fill in scam surveys, and unwittingly, letting in tons of viruses into your computer? Well, first, you ignore all those sites that claim that you can download the PC/Mac desktop version of Clash of Clans. Those will lead you to tons of viruses. As CoC has only ever been released for Android and iOS, the only legitimate ways to play them are on Android and iOS.

So how do you play COC on a PC/Mac desktop then? By using an emulator, of course! And the easiest way to do this is to get an Android emulator that can emulate Android on a PC. There are many Android emulators on the market. Many are meant for Android developers to test out their Android apps on the PC, and not all of them are free.

There are emulators like Bluestacks, Genymotion (FREE, but difficult to set up for end users, and no Play Store out-of-the-box), etc. For this guide, I will only show you how to install Bluestacks on the PC, simply because it is easy to install CoC on this emulator, and you also get Google's Play Store running out-of-the-box. No need to hunt for it on your own. However, if you feel adventurous, feel free to explore the other emulators too.

So, are you ready?

Installing Bluestacks on a Windows PC (OR Intel x86 Windows tablet):

-You must be an Administrator on your Windows PC.
-RAM: 2GB (minimum).
-Storage: >9GB available/free disk space for storing Android apps/games and their data.

  1. Get Bluestacks from here:
Download it, start the online installer, and then wait for it to do its work.

     2)  Open Bluestacks, and find the Search icon at the top left of your emulator. Type "Clash of Clans" into it to start searching. Click on the Clash of Clan icon, and wait a while for the download and installation to be ready.

     3)  After Clash of Clans is installed, and your Google account linked to this new device, it's time to set up the on-screen keyboard:
Click on the Home button, and then on the Bluestacks Settings icon at the top where the Search icon is. Next, click on "Select IME", and then choose "Enable OnScreen Keyboard". Now, go back, start CoC, and confirm that you can type in the chat box within CoC.

That's it! Happy Clashing!

*Bluestacks reversed screen width and height problem:
  I have some problem with Bluestacks’ screen orientation as I am not exactly on a desktop, but rather, on a Teclast Intel Atom tablet that can act as a desktop when I connect the HDMI-out to an external monitor. If your Bluestacks seemed to have confused your screen's width and height, then you may have the same problems many have faced. If so, go here:, and have a look at the solution. Or just google for “Bluestacks change screen width height registry”.
 I had to reverse my width and height. For the record, I had them set to 720 (GuestWidth &  WindowWidth) and 860 (GuestHeight & WindowHeight).

**About the Bluestacks emulator:
 Bluestacks is one of the top emulators, and is good for gaming, and the occasional Android app that is unavailable for your desktop. Its interface is a bit different from standard Android, and after a while, it requires you to download sponsored apps/games for it to remain free. Fortunately, all I have to do is just click OK, and it allows me to continue using it for free even though I have never launched the downloaded app/games. For our purpose, it will be more than good enough.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Candy Crush Tips: Things to do when you are stuck on difficult levels

1. Change your focus in the game [Change your game plan]

 When you get yourself stuck at a level for a some time, you start to question your luck, and your mind begins to entertain conspiracy theories. As a result, you will get depressed, and make bad decisions in playing the game.

 "This is how the developer makes their money!"
 "You can't get through this without spending money!"
 "God hates me!"
 And so on and so forth.

 You start to think that anybody who progressed beyond your level is most probably doing so with a little help from his or her credit card. This is when you should try doing this one thing. And that is to change your focus in the game. If your game plan is to progress by doing things in a particular sequence, try coming up with an alternate sequence. Try wiping out the center area first before you progress downwards. Or take out that pesky bomb first. Or try using the back button (on Android) if the board presented to you is not to your advantage. Do whatever that is different from what you normally do!

Often, this paradigm shift is all the luck you need to go to the next level.

Applies to: Levels where you have been stuck for a long while, and is making you depressed.

2. Use the back button on Android devices

 The back button on Android devices can help you restart a game without you being penalized by dropping lives on most game types, except for the timed ones where you will lose a life when you do so. As such, on certain levels, like level 33, where moves are at a premium, make use of this as much as possible, by only continuing the game if the candies are nicely aligned for you.

Applies to: Levels 33, and other levels where available moves are limited.

3. Maximize unoccupied space to create more chances to generate the special candies

 This is something that you may not get when you first play the game. When you play those levels where unoccupied space is at a premium, you will find that you generate less special candies to do the combos, and that's because the more space you get the more chances you have of creating those special candy combos.

 In levels where there is a large block of unmovable candies, the first thing you should do is usually to clear the blockage so that you have the maximum space possible to generate the special candies. After that only you start clearing your way downwards.

Applies to: Levels ..., and levels where there is a large mass blocking your progress.

4. Prioritize!

 On levels where you have bombs, you will need to take them out as soon as possible, or within the next 2 moves. Otherwise, a few candy swipes later, the board might change to a formation which no longer favors you.

 Also, be aware that some areas of the board, like the top, or the sides, have higher priority because it is harder to get new candies to drop into those area. Locked away areas, and isolated islands also have a higher priority for the same reason.

Applies to: All levels

5. Watch a video to see how others get past this level online

 When you are really, really stuck, you can also go to Youtube and type "Candy Crush" plus the level number. Watch any one of the game walkthrough videos that come up. All you need is usually just that light bulb moment of inspiration. I have seen people retelling how they were able to progress immediately afterwards just by watching a video on how others do it on a level where they have been stuck for months. That is because they have been doing the same wrong sequence over and over again. Once they see how others do it, and changed their focus accordingly, the particular level became easy. Happened to me often, I must admit.

Applies to: All stuck levels!

So there you go, some things to do to help you when you are stuck on difficult levels.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Clash Of Clans Tips: How to get the 1250 Sweet Victory achievement early

Why go for the "Sweet Victory!" 1250 achievement early?
As a bonus of going for the "Sweet Victory!" achievement early, you will be awarded 450 gems which will help you get hold of the 3rd builder, and as a result, help you get ahead of your peers in the game faster.

How to do it?
If you are wanting to get the 1250 achievement early, you are probably at level 25 or thereabouts, with a level 6 town hall, and above the 700 trophy range. These figures are only included as guidance, and vary from person to person. Since you want to do it early, you will probably have to punch above your weight, and when you do so, accept that you will probably lose 95% of the fights if they were fair fights. Yes, you are that weak in this stage of the game. :/

So, go back into your big bad school bully mode and find bases that:
 1. Are weakly defended - Those that have no walls, low level walls, not more than 3 compartments of walls, etc.

 2. Leave their town halls outside (By the way, people do this to gain a shield and some good night sleep from the game. You need to do this once, to understand how it works. Don't worry too much about losing trophies, as usually you would not lose many, -5, -7, etc. compared to the at least 10+ that you can win).

 3. Have their gold mines and collectors full of uncollected resources outside the base. You need to be able to tell an overflowing collector or gold mine apart from one that just have their resources collected recently. You can get 50% of what is inside the elixir collectors and gold mines, and if they have most of their resources outside, there is a chance that you will hit the 50% damage done needed for you to win the game, and the trophies. The more you do this, the better you will be able to judge your chances of winning this. As a bonus, you also get the huge amount of loot.

 This game is about bullying other people, and exploiting others' weaknesses so that you can plunder their riches, and launder that resources to build an army that can do this even better. Every time you go into a multiplayer match, you are going into bully mode. The more you play this game, the more you will fear what you will become. :/

 If you cannot do the bullying well, there is Candy Crush Saga. ;) And I played that one too - although rarely these days, since this game became available on Android.

What do you need to do or know?
  • Know your breakeven point, so that you know how much resources to target for on each raid. Get a calculator and count the elixir cost for all your troops. This should be about 30K elixir or less. Then set a target to achieve - maybe 100K in combined resources (gold and elixir), with at least 30K elixir. If not, hit the next button. Make use of that button. I frequently go over 10 or more before I settle on a base to attack. Do not accept what you are given.
  • Know your attacking deficiencies:
  1. Don't attack a base with 3 mortars.
  2. Don't attack a base with mortars that have 2 or more gold lines, cannons with above 2 gold lines, etc.
  3. Don't attack  defenses with more than 5 compartments (especially if you do not play with more than 6 wall breakers).
  4. Don't attack walls gold and higher (especially if you do not play with more than 6 wall breakers).
     The above are dependent on your troops strength and personnel. You will need to try and err, to find out what rules you should stick to. Make up your own rules as you play the game.

  • Know the enemy's strengths: If you see a Barbarian King, Archer Queen, etc, it may be a better idea not to attack.
  • Test the enemy's Clan Castle: If you can go within the Clan Castle's coverage radius, sacrifice a goblin or barbarian (only 60 elixirs each at level 3) and have that little guy run at the Clan Castle, and see whether any troops pour out from there. You can choose not to attack if you see troops, for example. Or if you see a dragon, hit the next button quickly. That beast alone can take out your giants in seconds, never mind the rest of the defense. It is a good idea to chicken out now! All bullies are chicken at heart, so don't worry about this. You will get used to being a chicken, I promise you. ;)
  • Use your specialist bomb detection squad: They are also known as goblins, and they can be placed onto a run into suspect empty  spaces before you attack the base, to trigger the hidden bombs. They are too fast for the bombs, and will trigger every bomb in their path. Good especially against those people who like to cluster all their mines and traps at a few spots. And the best part is - notice that they do not complain to the evil warlord (that's you!) when you send them on their run.
  • Know the town hall levels, and what defenses they can have in their level: Go online and look at the different pictures of town halls. Or visit your clan members town hall, and click on them to see the town hall level. They are all represented differently in the game. Do this until you can tell one from the other just by looking at them.
       Once you are familiar with the differences, if you see a town hall 5 base with empty squares - you know there can't be any Hidden Teslas in there. There can be Giant bombs or Pumpkin bombs (Halloween only) or Santa Strike (Christmas season) though. If you spot a level 8 town hall, you may not want to attack because they normally have a strong base, as well as Hidden Teslas.
  • Know the walls well, and how many wall breakers you need to break each grade of walls. Example: You will need 2 wall breakers level 3 to break the golden walls.
  • Browse online resources for the game, or get a good game guide. This is one of those games where you need to read a lot on, to do well. So make sure you read more to understand the game. If you don't find out more about the game, you will be clueless about the game.

  • Get help from your clan: Ask for healers, giants, etc, to help you in your attack: If you are in a good clan, you will find people offering healers, and higher level troops that can help your cause. Ask for them, don't be shy. If you don't have access to the healer yet, make use of this channel. By the way, if you wondered why the healers look the way they are - it is because that heaven lost a lot of angels due to enemy fire in Clash Of Clans - and have since converted some of their more ordinary looking maids into angels. Now you know! :)
  • Part of the art of being a good bully is knowing who you cannot bully. Remember that it is alright to chicken out at a match early, especially if certain things develop in the game - you pressed too quick and started the attack unknowingly, you notice a dragon coming out of the Clan Castle, eg. Just surrender, and you will be able to launch the next attack more or less within the next few minutes especially if you have troops queuing in your barracks. You will not be losing resources, although you will still lose trophies. When I was fighting for my 1250 achievement, I was afraid of doing this, but now that I am no longer going for that, at times, I will deliberately sacrifice a goblin - bless them - to lose trophies so that I can stay within the 1050 - 1200 trophy range that is ideal for me to do my resource farming. Looking back, in some of those situations I was already going to lose anyway, so why lose my precious resources as well?

  • Do not put pressure on yourself by expecting to be able to achieve 1250 trophies easily in a single run. The levels before are easier, and if you look at other clan members, some of the higher ups are not too far away from the 1200 trophy level. Going from 0 to 800 is easy, going from 800 to 1200 is not easy unless you have maximized your base, or you have spent some real cash at the game buying the gems.

  • Do not spend gems in this game doing frivolous things like boosting your production. Do not even spend them on anything at all, because you will need them for this achievement, and you will also need them later for your 4th and 5th builders. This does not apply to those who spends cash in this game to buy gems, of course.

What should I do next?
Go for level 7 as soon as you can, as level 6 is a level that limits you. You will always find it difficult to coordinate attacks against the gold walls and beyond, and you will also not have enough troops to win the battle at times. On top of that, you do not have enough walls available to you to build a decent base and that leaves you vulnerable to plunderers.

Bear in mind that there is a 4-day upgrade time to get into town hall level 7, so take that into account as well. I hit the upgrade button when my walls were partially black and gold, by the time I reached level 7 town hall, my walls were mostly gold with a bit of pink coming through. Some would say I upgraded too early, but this is highly dependent on the way you play the game. If you are an attacking player, I'd say go for it!
Beyond this, your next target in the game should be to go for the 4th builder to help you do things faster.

Good luck, chief!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Candy Crush Saga Tips

Do you find yourself going online again and again browsing for Candy Crush strategies, walkthroughs, and tips, and then finding that most solutions don't work for you? If so, you are not alone, and that is because the game is random and changes every time. Hence, a Guide or Video on how to win a particular level won't help at all. You need to learn "how to fish".

Did you know that 70 percent of the Candy Crush players who reached the top level finish the game without ever spending a dime in-app? These players have spent countless hours mastering every nuances of the game, but you don't have to do it the hard way like them. You can beat your friends to the finish line by leveraging the skills of the best players. Wouldn't you want to be the top player in this kiddies game among your circle of friends, offering advice on how to beat the game, instead of being continually stuck?

By learning a collection of little known secrets, you will be able to breeze through levels. And these are easy to learn - you just need someone to point them out to you.

There is no need to sign up for Candy Crush cheats or hacks that will get your account banned.
You don't have to waste money buying Candy Crush Gold, get it FREE!
Also, you don't have to expose yourself to scams by buying a guide that requires your account information after you order.

If you are not doing that well in this game, and already far behind your peers - chances are that you are forking out small amounts of cash here and there to help you advance in this freemium game. If you get hold of a good game guide, you will only need to pay once, and you get everything all nicely put together for you. Either that, OR you can spend countless number of hours online surfing for tips - the choice is entirely yours. But whatever you do, know that spending cash within a freemium game like Candy Crush Saga is a very bad choice as the stats show that these games actually make more money than a REGULAR NON-FREE game!

Here is one highly-recommended continuously updated guide: Candy Crush Saga Tips.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Pearly Penile Papules Removal

Hirsuties Papillaris Genitalis, aka Hirsuties Coronae Glandis, or more commonly known as Pearly Papules (or Pearly Penile Papules [PPP]), are unwanted small bumps or skin tags that appear like a string of pearls, as one or several rows around the rim of the the penis head. They are normally skin colored or white, with a diameter between 1mm to 3mm. By some unconfirmed estimate, they affect a fifth of the male population, although that may just have been speculation.

I have Pearly Penile Papules (PPP), what does that mean?

The good news about them is that they are NOT Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD/STDs), NOT Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI/STIs) or Venereal Diseases (VD). Although they may be mistaken for STDs, they are considered a human anatomy variation, and is not contagious. That means that there is no chance you will be able to pass it to a sex partner.

They not related to sexual activity, and there is also no link between them and bad personal hygiene even though personal hygiene in that area is a good thing as that is one of the causes of another penis affliction - penis pimples. But if the penis bumps or domes have open wounds or disharges, itches, or cause any irritation then they are NOT Pearly Penis Papules. They are something else.***

They form deeper in the skin tissue, and may take up to four years to fully form on the surface. But once you have them, they remain with you unless you take action to remove them.

Studies have shown that they appear more often in younger men, and those who are uncircumcised. They are likely to appear suddenly in men below 40 years of age. Some got them early, from as early as 12 years of age, when they were teenagers. So if you are reading this, and do not have them, do not start laughing at those who have this until you are well above middle age.

Pearly Penile Papules Removal

What causes Pearly Penile Papules?

The cause for Pearly Penile Papules is still unknown. In the past, these bumps may have provided extra stimulation for the opposite sex during the mating process, kind of like what you can find in adult toys - but in our current lifetime where STDs like AIDS, genital warts, and herpes are prevalent, they scare the hell out of most people who have not heard about them before hand. So they are a no no in our society. Men who have them shy away from telling their friends about Pearly Penile Papules. This may explain why even in our time where the general population are very well educated about STDs, a lot of people are still unaware of them.

What do they look like?
If you are unsure of whether you have PPP or what they looked like, open Google in a new tab and search for Pearly Penile Papules. I have made this easy for you. Click the link prior to this, and then after it opened in a new tab, click on the Images tab at the top of the Google search content, and ogle at the images there. Within the top 6 rows, you should be able to see lots of pictures of this anatomy variation, kindly provided by Google.

You should NEVER try to burn, cut, grind, pick, or squeeze the Pearly Penile Papules. Let me say that in another way. DO NOT even pick or squeeze them, as this could lead to infection, and even scarring.

How do you explain Pearly Penile Papules to a woman?

The worse part about having Pearly Penile Papules is that when your partner or partner-to-be sees it, they might freak out. As such, they may lower a person's self-image as penile papules affect how others perceive them. Having said that, there are people who are not affected by this, and they do not care about removing them as they have partners who understand their affliction.

Women are themselves not immune to Hirsuties papillaris genitalis (PPP) because there is a similiar condition affecting women called Vestibular Papillomatosis of the Vulva or Hirsuties Papillaris Vulvae.

***Similiar conditions often mistaken for Pearly Penile Papules:
Penis pimple (penis acne), Fordyce Spots (aka Fordyce's Spots) or Sebaceous Prominence.

(Work in progress) ...

Do I really need to remove them?
No, they are harmless. There are people who have partners on long term relationship who are ok with them, and they live normal lives. But if you are someone who seeks a lot of partners, and into short term relationships, then you may want to remove them as you will need time to slowly explain to your partners what Pearly Penile Papules are.

To remove or not to remove: depends on whether it affects your self-confidence, and whether you can explain them for what they are to your partner.
Remove PPP if: You don't feel good about it, you are into short-term relationships, etc.
Ignore PPP if: You have a partner who understands your situation, and you don't think they are a problem.

What are the medically accepted method of removal?
There are many methods available. Among the most popular are:
1. CO2 laser treatment using CO2 laser vaporization, which is expensive, and can cost thousands of dollars. They are usually performed by a dermatologist, taking only a few minutes to perform. This is outpatient treatment, and it does not require hospital stay. The patient can expect to be able to be back to normal within days, if there are no complications.

2. Electrosurgery performed with a hyfrecator (portmanteau of “high-frequency eradicator"). This takes less than an hour. The patient can expect
to be able to recover within days, and fully heal within 2 weeks or so, provided there are no medical complications.

A good doctor will generally discourage you from removing PPP unless necessary due to possible medical complications.

As you may have suspected, laser vaporization does not sound friendly, especially not in that particular area. You may have wanted to laser vaporise some Tie-Fighters in Star Wars as a kid. Not laser vaporise something in your sensitive area. No.

That is why people have gone through them and then complained of complications. That being the case, before you take the plunge, you should consider other methods.

What are some of the other alternate/home removal methods?

Not all of the following traditional methods will work for you. Some people swear by them while others say they don't work.

A. Abrasive/Harsh methods of removal:

You will not be the first to think of using chemicals or heat to burn off these penis bumps. People have came up with using soldering iron heat, wart remover, ammonia, bleach (chlorine), ammonia, etc, just to avoid seeing the doctor, or to save some money. These are top of the list of Pearly Penile Papules removal methods you should avoid.

All these methods can cause infection, as well as scarring of the skin. If the scarring is deeper, it can affect the erectile function of the penis. Just think - even a little underwear abrasion or chafing can lead to the darkening of skin tissue in the crotch - and the penis and scrotum is more sensitive than that.

You are advised against using these methods as you do not want to be unwittingly part of the self-inflicted genital mutilation statistics. I will not enjoy reading about you or any crazy person doing harm to his penis as it can cause some part of me to go "Ouch"! So beware of any sites promoting these barbaric and outdated methods.

B. Soft methods of removal:
This may involve the use of natural herbal oils or ointments to soften the papules by drying them out. These includes:
-Castor oil
-Eucalyptus oil ["oil of eucalyptus"] which has antiseptic properties

(Work in progress) ...

If you are looking for a safe method to do this, have a look at Pearly Penile Papules Removal. They have everything explained nicely for you. I would go for the soft methods of removal first. If it does not work for you, then there is always surgery as the last resort.

NOTE: Although PPP are proven to be harmless, the presence of any lumps or bumps near the reproductive organs should always be checked out by a medical professional. And that should be the first thing you do before you spend even a dime on anything on the internet to remove them. DO NOT delude yourself into thinking they are probably PPP even if they look the same. They may be the dreaded STDs. Get official confirmation first, then plan your next move.