Six Things I Love About New World (And Four Things I Don’t)

I’ve been playing New World. I’ve been wanting a new MMO to scratch my itch in just about forever, and this one seems to be doing the trick–at least for now. As with any game, there are things I love a lot, and things I love, well, a little bit less.

Six Things I Love

1. A World to Explore

I enjoy going off and exploring. New World seems to have ample opportunity for this, at least so far. I’m sure eventually I’ll see every nook and cranny, but for now I’m enjoying the journey. There are even town project missions you can do that are exploration based. I haven’t picked one up yet (I’ve been too busy crafting) but I’m looking forward to trying one!

2. A Creepy Atmosphere

Some of my favorite games aren’t horror, but they are creepy. Don’t Starve is probably the perfect example. It’s not a horror game, but it’s creepy. You don’t know what’s going to be around the next corner, or if the thing you find will be useful or harmful.

Most of the stuff in New World is useful, but it still has that “I could get hurt here and I don’t know what’s behind that boulder” feeling that I love. The sound effects in the game really make it–you can hear other players fighting in the distance.

3. Visual Appeal

Hi. My name is Alli, I can be a bit of a graphics snob. I don’t like voxels or anime-style graphics. I can dig pixels. I like things that are super stylized. And I like realistic, if it’s done well. It’s done well here. Combined with the incentives to explore and the game’s atmosphere, it’s definitely a place I want to spend time in.

Stopping to admire the view while hunting for iron

4. Gathering

One of my favorite things to do in MMOs is gather. In New World you could probably spend your entire time gathering. If there’s a tree, you can chop it. If there’s a boulder, you can mine it. If there’s a shrub, you can harvest it. Of course, certain things are rarer and more valuable than others. But I just love the fact that you can gather everything! It gives me even more incentive to explore.

I think I’m going to need a bigger bag.

5. Gathering, Though

This needs a second point because of how awesome it is. If you’re wandering around and someone is chopping down a tree, you can hear it. And you can see it falling. It might even fall over the path you’re walking on. (It would be extra fun if it gave you damage from falling on your head, but I haven’t seen that.)

6. A Good Place to Start

I liked the intro/tutorial. It was detailed enough to give me what I needed to play the game, but brief & entertaining enough that having to repeat it to create a new character doesn’t sound like pure torture.

Something I like about playing new games vs joining an older one years after launch is that older games tend to get bloated with various systems, many of which become useless as new ones are added in subsequent expansions. I’m not feeling any system overload yet–it’s at least spacing out the systems to new players in a way that’s manageable.

Three Things I Don’t

1. Locked Servers

When I initially made my character, I did some googling to find the unofficial RP server. I find people on RP servers to generally be more mature and not have incredibly irritating character names. Of course, the unofficial RP server was full. I joined a different server in the same server…cluster? I’m not sure of the official term. Amazon has a forum post on server transfers, but check out this line:

You cannot move your character to a full world.

So if I’m understanding correctly, I wont be able to transfer my character to the unofficial RP server if it’s still full. (How would a server become not full?) Or if I want to join Belghast but his server’s full, I’m still SOL. I don’t think I need to explain why this is terrible for the game. I think everyone gets it. Belghast’s post Fragmented Community digs into why this happened a bit more.

2. Somewhat Boring Storytelling

The quests aren’t that interesting. There does seem to be some stories and I’m enjoying some of the NPCs but the quests are very much of the “kill 10 rats” variety. Not my favorite. I am someone who cares about story, so this is an issue for me. I know this was originally designed as a PvP game and PvE was added later, so it makes sense that the quests seem like an afterthought. I’m hoping it’s something Amazon will improve on in the future. And don’t get me started on the factions–I need an entire post about why they’re fairly boring (at least early on in the game).

3. Lack of Character Customization

Alright, maybe I’m missing something. In which case, refile this under “confusing character customization.” And don’t interpret this as me saying the characters look bad. They look good.

But after selecting your face, that’s it for facial features. You can’t pick face 5 but change the nose. And there’s no body type selection, so you can’t make yourself fatter or thinner or taller or shorter, you just are. On top of everyone being a human, it makes everyone look kind of the same. Pretty sure, but boring.

Which leads me to my one question: I thought this game was supposed to have pistols! Come on, Amazon: where are my pistols?

Cover Image: Concept art for the game, via the official site.

We Bought A Switch

Months ago. Many months ago, we bought a Nintendo Switch.

We bought the Switch long before I decided to do Blaugust again, only to fizzle out three entries in and then not post a thing for the entire month of September. I’m not even sure when we bought the Switch, but now’s when I’m finally getting around to writing about it.

The Switch was mainly intended as something to do with Indy. We got into playing Super Nintendo Classic games with him before bed, and thought the Switch might be easier. It’s definitely easier on my back to play with a wireless controller!

We picked up three games with it: Super Mario 3D World, Super Mario Odyssey, and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. (The Zelda game was for us.) We’ve since purchased Super Smash Bros, Luigi’s Mansion 3, Splatoon 2, and Mario Kart 8. The kid is, well, not particularly good at any of them, but he manages. I’m aware that one day he’ll surpass us and we’ll fondly look back at the time he handed the other parent the controller to get past something particularly difficult, or when we didn’t have to jump off the cliff several times so he could win Smash Brothers at least once.

We refer to this as “the kitty game” for obvious reasons.

“Remember when?” We’ll ask each other, when we slip on the banana he left yards ago as a rushes into the finish line in Mario Kart. Remember when he would play upside-down and stop looking at the screen?

I got so fed up at playing Luigi’s Mansion 3 with him I started watching Lego Masters instead. We’re almost finished with season 2 so I’m scrambling to find a show that might actually interest both of us. He’s gotten pretty good at Lego building with instructions and I was hoping the show might inspire some creativity, but so far all we’ve gotten is occasionally making critters with leftover bricks or sticking two instruction-based builds together and calling it a “mash-up.”

This has me thinking though–I bet he’d enjoy the Lego games! Maybe Lego Jurassic World because he likes the show on Netflix. I don’t know if he’s familiar with any of the other IPs. If you have any suggestions for two-player Switch games a 5-year-old might love, leave ’em in the comments. Lego Jurassic World is arriving Saturday.

Cover Image: Why do I love Super Mario 3D World? Because you can turn your character into a kitty. Obviously. Mrow!

I Was Supposed to Be Camping, but Instead I Played Sims4

We went camping for one of what was supposed to be three nights, and it poured. It was nice and sunny all day, and then at night, it felt like buckets were being tossed over the tent I was sharing with my son (daughter was in my parents’ trailer with them, husband was in a hammock). Despite the heat and humidity, I had to cover myself with a sleeping bag to prevent drops from landing on me as I tried, mostly unsuccessfully, to sleep.

In the morning, my child accidentally put his plushie cheetah into a tent puddle. The day’s forecast was cloudy with the Lake Michigan undertow too strong for swimming, with rain that night and the next day. And the next night. The next morning we decided to go back home.

After returning and setting all our camping supplies on the lawn to dry out, I quickly jumped into where I left off in The Sims 4: the Country Living expansion pack. Llama’s, y’all lamas.

Fluffy, the llama (along with my human sim)

I created a new sim, Sutton, with the new Country Caretaker aspiration. Whenever I make sims I always create their life story in my mind. Sutton is starting out with not much cash but an interest in rural living. But eventually she’s going to turn into an obnoxious lifestyle blogger.

Inspired by Aywren’s haunted house story, I decided to actually take some screenshots of my game. After moving in and getting her llama, Fluffy, settled in and her garden started, Aywren set out to get to know the people of Henford-on-Bagley, which is like cottage core on steroids. She meets one of the pub owners, Sara Scott, and some other sims. She takes them fishing, where they bond over not catching anything.

She also meets the mayor.

Love your hat, Ms. Mayor!

After selling much produce and llama fiber, Sutton is able to update her house with a bedroom and get rid of the tent she was sleeping in. After my ill-fated tent adventures, I was relieved for her. The next thing she needed to kickstart her homestead lifestyle empire was a husband.

Sutton kept going to town and meeting women. Women love the rural life, apparently. Sutton was making some great friends, but not meeting the ruggedly handsome photo prop of her dreams.

But then she met Michael Bell, the creature handler. Sutton was smitten.

Beard needs to be a bit longer, but he’ll do.

Michael must’ve seen something in her too, because he invited her to the Romance Festival. But soon after their arrival to the festival, Michael takes off for the bathroom leaving Sutton to herself. With the flirty vibe of the festival, it isn’t long before Sutton is approached.

Sutton and Dominic seem to be hitting it off, don’t they? We could have a love triangle on our hands.

Cover Image: screenshot of the current state of Sutton’s little farm.

Help, My Kid Sucks at Super Nintendo Classic

We had a Super Nintendo Classic: my husband bought it for me as a gift 3 or 4 years ago, and I barely touched it. After the kid and I finished playing Ikenfell, I remembered it. I thought we could give it a try.

He likes it, but holy cow is he bad at it. I thought I was fairly awful–I am 99% a PC only gamer–but he just has no idea what he’s doing. We play Mario Kart and it’s a blessing if he can get through an entire race without wanting to give up. We’ve used it as a teaching tool for persistence: it doesn’t matter if you win, just finish the race. He seems more interested in trying to pick up goodies and coins than winning, anyway.

He also likes the Mario RPG a lot, but it’s single player, so he watches us play. I’ve decided I don’t want to play that with him anymore, though, because I find the jumping puzzles frustrating. (Maybe I need a lesson in persistence.) My husband has played the game a few times already so he’s taken over on that one.

But, I didn’t expect him to be this bad at it. Maybe 5 is too young, or it takes more practice than I thought. I remember my brother picking it up more easily, but I think he was a bit older when he got his first console (Game Cube). His tablet gaming skill doesn’t seem to translate to console gaming.

I feel like this post should come with a recommendation: do I recommend the Super Nintendo Classic for kids? I’m not sure. I want to wait and see how he does when he’s a bit older and can read. And since all the Super Nintendo games are available free on the Switch, it probably doesn’t make sense to buy both.

Cover image via this Polygon article–I don’t think we’ll be entering any Super Mario Kart competitions anytime soon.

It’s Ikenfell!

Do you:

  1. Play video games?
  2. Like Harry Potter, but you’re angry with how J.K. Rowling has hurt the trans community?

If both of those things are true, I have a video game for you: it’s IKENFELL!

Image via the game’s Kickstarter (full disclosure: I backed it!)

In Ikenfell, you play the twin sister of a witch who attends the magic school Ikenfell. You don’t have magic, though, you’re just an Ordinary. But after not hearing from your sister for longer than is reasonable, you head to Ikenfell to make sure she’s okay. While you’re there, something happens and suddenly you have magic, too.

I started playing Ikenfell by myself in the evening, and it was the perfect thing to play thirty minutes of before getting ready for bed. But then I started playing one afternoon, while the baby was napping and my son was playing on his tablet. I had my headphones in, so he must’ve seen something coming from the office. He pulled in a footstool to watch.

Soon I was reading the dialog and explaining the combat mechanics. My kid even helped me get through a tricky puzzle involving frozen floors and switches that moved blocks this way and that.

The games cute pixel art graphics, unique puzzles, diverse characters, and hilarious bosses (ever fight a blob that likes to steal hats? or a star that wants to eat you?) have captivated both me and my kid. One of the best parts for him is that many of the enemies, after being defeated, will help you out. They were just momentarily in a bad mood and wanted to fight you.

My one criticism is that the fights can get a bit long and tedious. I feel that way about most fights in video games though, so take that with a grain of salt.

The best part of the game? It’s how you save and heal.

That’s right–you pet the cat. Ikenfell is available on Steam for PC and for various platforms.

Cover Image: Petronella (bottom right) is my favorite.

Cyberpunk 2077: It’s Fun, Alright?

I’ve just finished helping a friend who just found her lover dead in the bathtub, suicide. We’re on the roof of her apartment and she wants me gone so she can mourn on her own, and I’m about to leave when I’m struck by how beautiful the city is in this game.

I enjoy the aesthetics of the cyberpunk genre. Neon pops in a sea of cool grays, rust, and oil slicks. My Cyberpunk 2077 character, V, has a face like mine but cropped magenta waves and know how to load up and fire a sniper rifle.

Unlike most RPGs, I’ve decided to make my character good. Kindhearted. She wants to survive Night City, but not at the expense of everyone else. Even still, she’s not above plowing bullets through the sort of turds who are out killing people for their implants.

It’s probably a given, but this is not the sort of game I’m playing in front of my 4-year-old. This is a wait until the kids are in bed, pop in the headphones, and disappear into another world for an hour before bedtime kind of game. I know there’s been some negative reviews of the game even aside from the glitches, but I’m having a blast. I play on PC and have noticed less than a handful of glitches* in my 16 or so hours of playtime, nothing more than I’d expect. My PC’s good but a couple of years old and not top of the line.

It’s not perfect: I wish I could customize my character’s appearance after starting the game—I’d like to try some different hairstyles. It doesn’t seem replayable. The side quests aren’t very interesting.* I’m not a big side quest person (“the side quests are better than the main quests” is not a game selling point for me) and I’ve mainly been doing them as a way to get a few more eddies (the game’s currency). But it’s got the important things: an intriguing story with a customizable protagonist, a vibrant setting, and combat that doesn’t suck. I’ve also enjoyed changing up my gameplay: I started off doing purely stealthy takedowns, then I got a sniper rifle and started using that. Lately I’ve gotten more into the tech aspect.

I know the game is unplayable for a lot of people, and that really sucks, and part of me is hesitant to write a positive review (if you could call this such) of a game with so many issues: glitches, flashing lights that cause seizures, and the fact that my female avatar is hurled sexist abuse by enemies. As a developer, I’m also sensitive to studios forcing their devs to work long hours to finish a product. I’m not about to armchair-solve the problems in the video game industry (except for the gendered cursing–could’ve made that generic and saved a bit of time, too). I am going to buy games that look fun to me, because there aren’t a lot of AAA games that speak to me these days.

*I played this evening after I wrote everything above. While I was on an interesting side quest, I started having a glitch where I could see NPC skeletons and skulls inside their heads for a brief moment before the rest of their bodies appeared around them, sometimes leaving empty space for a moment where a body part should be. I think more interesting side quests open up as you progress in the main story meeting more characters and gaining street cred. As for the glitch, I’m not sure if it’s the game or my cybernetic implants.

Cover Image: Some promo art. The game makes me miss living in a city.

Let’s Go To The Moon (A Play-Along) – Act 3

Warning: This post contains spoilers for Act 3 of To The Moon. It’s the third part of the play-along hosted by Naithin. Now on to the questions!

1. Johnny… Joey… Twins. It seems after the accident Johnny lost his identity to his mother, and became a replacement-Joey. Does it change how you feel about Johnny as compared to your Act 1 impressions?

I spent more time thinking about how this worked than judging Johnny. Johnny gets beta blockers and, from what it seems like, completely forgets he even had a twin. I wonder who’s decision this was. Was it his mom’s? I can’t remember if it said she didn’t get them or if that’s just an assumption I’m making, but if she didn’t get them, does she just start thinking she has one kid and it’s Joey who survived? Did she get her memories erased and thinks she has one kid, Joey?

Johnny picks up Joey’s favorites (pickled olives and Animorphs). I’m thinking that was his mom’s influence. Now, I can’t hardly imagine loosing a child, but I can’t imagine making the choices she does which amounts to erasing the child that’s still alive.

I think I judged Johnny less harshly than some of the other play-along participants, but while this does increase my sympathy for him, I don’t judge him any less. The only thing I really judged him for was not reading the book on River’s condition–and I don’t think that was explained in Act 3. I’m still judging him on that, but he clearly loved River, so I can move beyond that one thing.

2. Eva and Neil have a verbal sparring match on their differing views of contract vs. what they now know (or think they know) about what would make Johnny happier. Outcome of Eva’s actions notwithstanding; do you sympathise with one view over the other here?

Neil’s for sure, but it’s hard for me to answer because I’m against memory alteration as a whole. Even with that aside, we find out that Johnny’s wish to go to the moon was to meet up with River.

This revelation is incredibly emotional. If you don’t see this scene and don’t feel anything, knowing what’s to come, your heart is three sizes too small.

But it’s about River. And in real life, Johnny spent his whole life with River. This request comes from a fragment of a chemically repressed memory. With his real memories, he’s getting what he wanted, but the words of his request are wrong and lead Neil and Eva in a wild goose-chase in the wrong direction.

And yet, I really relate to Eva in the scene where she’s all “I know what to do, just trust me!” and she runs off and does it. As a programmer, I often will think of the solution to something and be unable to articulate it–I’ll need to go and do it, Neils be damned.

Ace Asunder’s post reminded me that Neil said, “We happen to know what he wants better than he does!” I don’t hate Neil for saying this. I used to work for an agency and we very often knew what the clients wanted more than they did. Of course, I’m talking about software and not memories. I think that other people shouldn’t be deciding what memories to put in someone’s head, because other people shouldn’t be changing memories in the first place.

3. Throughout that same exchange, Eva asks Neil to trust her. He clearly didn’t. Did you?

Not in the way you might think. I definitely thought she was doing what she thought was the right thing. Because I could really see myself in that scene, I guessed she wanted to follow the letter of the contract and make Johnny happy.

But, knowing that there’s sequels: I have a feeling Sigmund Corp is up to something beyond just providing people with altered memories. It seems way too benevolent for a company in a video game. It wouldn’t surprise me if Eva knows a thing or two about it, while Neil’s completely in the dark.

4. “He can always find another ‘River’… But he’ll only have one brother.” Again, pretending for the moment you don’t know the outcome of Eva’s actions and what she (suspected) would happen… Do you agree? What about in this context of overwritten memories as opposed to life as it was?

No. It’s not real. The Joey isn’t even real, just constructed from Johnny’s memories. Even knowing the final outcome doesn’t make me think it’s right.

I don’t remember what I though the first playthrough. I wish I did. It would be interesting to see how my thoughts changed since then. I know that this time around, I strongly guessed that Eva’s attempts would be successful and that it meant we’d see River again. I don’t know if this was based on my own locked out memories of the game, or if it’s just my knack for guessing endings.

5. Do you ship Eva and Neil?

Of course! The sexual tension is there, folks.

But…I did tweet this a while back:

And I stand by it!

Cover Photo by SpaceX on Unsplash.

Let’s Go To The Moon (A Play-Along) – Act 1

To the Moon is an indie adventure game with pixel graphics, RPG maker sprites, and annoying tinkling music. But the story is so good, I loved it. I loved it when a friend insisted I play it over 5 years ago. Flash-forward to now, where I completely forgot entirely about the plot. I couldn’t even tell you that it centered around two people who’s job it was to implant new memories into a dying man’s brain. I knew I’d need a recap or an entire complete play-through before playing any sequels. So when Naithin announced he was hosting a play-along, I signed up.

There was one thing I remembered about the game:

It was really hard to get off the horse.

Get me off this thing! Via lparchive.org

Thankfully, Naithin took the time to write questions and answers for each Act in the game, so I don’t have to completely come up with my own stuff to write about. Whew.

Warning: Contains spoilers for Act 1 of To the Moon.

Let’s Play!

I’ve got the game launched. I’ve got hummus. I’m ready to go.

1. Let’s start off with the big guns — at the completion of Act 1 — how do you now feel about the very concept of granting someone’s dying wish by overwriting their memories with new ones?

Wanting to do this is a terrible idea. Sure, you’re on your death bed, and you think to yourself, “Wow, I really wasted my life. I wanted to be a marine biologist as a kid and instead I became an accountant. I never should’ve done that. What a crap life.” The best thing to do then, is…get new memories?

Your memories make up who you are. If those memories are implanted then you’re not really a real person, you’re just a fake set of memories. I can see good intentions in wanting people to die happy, but what about instead having them go through their memories and find the good ones? Maybe you wish you were a marine biologist, but as an accountant you stopped tax fraud or helped small businesses stay afloat? Maybe if you hadn’t become an accountant, you wouldn’t have met your spouse or had your children.

Plus, when you die, what happens to those memories? If you don’t believe in an afterlife, then, poof, they’re gone. Then what was the point of the whole thing? For a moment of happiness because your brain is lying to you the moment before you die? How much of whatever your benefactors would be inheriting did you spend on that moment?

If you do believe in the afterlife–well, let’s say you believe in Heaven. It’s not in the Bible so I can’t say for sure, but I’m pretty sure you’re not bringing those implanted memories with you. So you’d be stuck with those same old memories, which probably wouldn’t even matter, because you’d be partying with angels.

2. What did you think of River’s choice to put her treatment behind that of Anya?

Spoiler: Anya is a lighthouse.

Anya

My gut reaction is that it was selfish. She wanted this lighthouse to be “looked after” more than she wanted to be there for her own husband. She cared more about an inanimate object than she did about him.

But I think Anya is more than an object to River. I see Anya being a surrogate child. River and Johnny don’t have children, and I wonder if they wanted to but weren’t able to and somehow Anya took that place in River’s heart. If River sees Anya as her child, then of course she’d prioritize Anya’s life over her own.

3. In response to Neil commenting that it was like watching a train-wreck unfold, Eva says, “The ending isn’t any more important than the moments leading up to it.” Do you agree?

For sure. 100%.

I have a cat, Sashimi. I love my cat. I adore my cat.

Look at my cat. She wants boops.

My cat is going to be 9 next month. She’s not going to live forever. Someday I’m going to have to deal with her death. The thought itself makes me sad. It’s going to be a hard and terrible time in my life.

It doesn’t mean every happy moment I spend with my cat is pointless. No one says “if you’re going to be so sad when your cat dies, maybe you shouldn’t have adopted one.” If it was all about the ending, we’d never have pets!

I can come up with more examples–like a relationship I had in my twenties that was bad at the end. It doesn’t mean I can’t fondly remember the good moments and treasure the things I discovered and friends I made because of that relationship.

The journey matters.

4. What did you make of Johnny’s decision not to read the book offered by Dr. Lee?

Crap. Unless River didn’t want to do anything about it and ignore it and he was following her lead–but I don’t think that’s true or they wouldn’t be getting a diagnosis in the first place.

You can tell Johnny loves River, but I don’t know why he doesn’t read the book. Does he want to pretend it’s not a part of her? Is he afraid it will take away from the part of her personality that attracted him to her in the first place? I don’t get it. It’s not supportive. Shame on you, Johnny. You should’ve read the book.

5. How do you feel about Johnny as a person now, particularly after he reveals why he (at least initially?) was interested in River?

Johnny was initially interested in River because she seemed different and he wanted some of that uniqueness for himself. A rather selfish reason to date someone, right?

For sure. But when we first start dating someone, aren’t the reasons usually superficial and possibly selfish?

And it seems like he really likes her, and he does fall in love with her, so who cares what was going on in his teenage brain when they first met. It still bothers me that he didn’t read the book, but I can forgive him for this.

6. We saw River’s obsession with origami rabbits very early in the piece — and some of the events that tracked back as a possible origin along the way. After Johnny told her about his initial motivations is when it all kicked off. Neil thought it might’ve been River holding onto a grudge. What do you think?

I don’t think so, because like I said, I don’t think Johnny’s confession is that big of a deal. And from a story telling perspective, the game is only half-finished at this point so the answer we have now probably isn’t the actual answer.

I think it might have something to do with why Johnny wants to go to the moon. In Asian folklore, depicted in the moon is a rabbit grinding something with a mortar and pestle. What the rabbit is grinding depends on the specific culture. (Maybe here it’s pickled olives?)

Cover Photo by Aswathy N on Unsplash. So many rabbits!

Life Update: Mid April, 2020

Hello and welcome to the blog where I, a busy working parent, discuss the multitude of reasons as to why I’m not playing video games right now.

Recently I started a knitting blog, and it was part of the same WordPress instance as this one. I realized I could comment with a link to the knitting blog, or this blog, but not both. This bothered me, so I created a new WordPress account, made it an admin, and transferred all the posts to this author. It was fun to revisit all my previous posts.

Like everyone else, we’re quarantined in our home. With me already working from home, my husband a stay-at-home-dad, and Indy not in school yet, it’s not a major change. The biggest one is that the two other humans never leave the house, which for me as an introvert who’s primary love language is being left alone, has been difficult. It’s hard for the kid because everything fun is closed: the library, playgrounds*, museums, the zoo, the dog park. Going to Grandma and Grandpa’s is definitely off-limits: we want to keep them healthy.

On the bright side, the weather is warming up. This means we can take Meabel outside to play. I’ve been teaching her how to play fetch with the Frisbee. She is not the brightest dog, but she makes up for it in enthusiasm!

I’d mostly been playing The Sims 4 during the first part of social isolation, then yesterday I decided what I really wanted to do was take my aggression out on pixelated monsters. I played Diablo III. My Crusader is so OP. The usual plot-heavy games that normally appeal haven’t. I want something more mindless. I’m thinking of picking up WoW Classic again, but this time I want to find a super casual (but still socially active) Alliance-side guild to chat with while leveling. If one even exists.

My husband and kid are currently watching old bike races because my husband is bummed some big bike race is canceled. We have resorted to more screen time since we can’t go anywhere–mostly tablet games, because the kid flips his lid when it’s time to be done watching TV. We’re going to give TV a try later this afternoon and see how it goes.

Cover image via pxfuel. I’ve missed the tree leaves so much, and I’m happy to see them budding again!

*Not really but we tell him they are.

Revisiting The Witcher 3

I started playing The Witcher 3 back in November and now if my estimations are correct, I’m about halfway through the game. I’m playing the main story and side quests I read about in various “best side quests from The Witcher 3” articles online. This technique is helping me with a trap I often get myself into with open world games where I find myself with a todo list of quests. I feel like I need to finish all of them, and I’m not sure which ones to do first, or which ones are fun and which ones are just “go kill something.”

(I did do a couple of contracts (“go kill this monster” quests) because I needed more gold, as being Mr. Nice Witcher was causing my armor and weapons to wear out.)

witcherweapons
Everything here in disrepair.

When I’m playing the game, I’m enjoying myself, but when I find myself with some time to game, I often have to talk myself into playing it. Few of the quests have had the sort of plot where I really want to know what happens. Plus, a lot of the characters are continually referencing things that happened in the past in previous games, and I have no desire to play those at this point. But for the most part when I play, I enjoy myself.

I also want to finish the game so I can watch the show. I know the show and game don’t have the same plot, but it seems like a good idea in my head and is a good motivator for finishing the game. I think the story might work better for me as a show than a game–we’ll see. Rock, Paper, Shotgun compares the bathtub scenes from the show and the game! It’s hilarious. As in, which would be the better bathing experience (I did think the tub in the game was rather small.)

In other words, I’d say the game is pretty good, and I’ll keep playing for now.

Cover Image from this wallpaper site.