Monday, August 31, 2015

The End of Blaugust


Wow, what a month.  Blaugust was awesome!

31 posts in 31 days is a tall order, but so many bloggers have risen to the challenge.

I ended up working ahead and scheduling posts out in advance, but I know there are a lot of the bloggers who diligently wrote posts every day.

Congrats everyone!  We made it!  We made so much content and had a great time building our community!

This was a fantastic event.  Thanks so much to Belghast for organizing it and helping it along throughout the month.  It wouldn't have happened without him.

Thanks everyone who participated.  We made it!  You guys all rock!

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Gaming To-Do List Update

Earlier in the month I was inspired to make a gaming to-do list because of a great post by Izlain.  Now that we're nearing the end of the month and the end of Blaugust I thought it would be a good time to check in on the status of my list.

Here's where we stand:
  • Persona 4 Golden - Still playing and enjoying!  I plan on playing more.
  • Hearthstone - Succeeded in getting to at least rank 20 by the end of the month.  Kept up with the Tavern Brawl's every week for card packs.  Will continue to play for now
  • FFXIV Heavensward - I did daily trial roulettes until they stopped being fun.  Now I have the game on hold until the next content update.[removing from list]
  • KOTOR II - Tried and found it wanting.  Done with this game.[removing from list]
  • Valkyria Chronicles - I got back to the game and have been playing it.  Still not complete.  Will keep playing
  • Dirty Bomb - I tried it and didn't like it.[removing from list]
  • Fire Emblem Awakening - I still haven't gotten back to this game, but I want to.  It was a fantastic SRPG.
  • Lightning Returns - I plan on getting to it soon.  I want to spend more time with Final Fantasy spin-offs.
  • FFX-2 - Another Final Fantasy spin-off that I already own.  I liked playing it through when it first released.  I want to try the remaster! [added to list]
There we go.  A few games removed and one game added!  Lots of progress being made this month as I work toward the end of my gaming backlog.

Next month, September, is typically when games start releasing for the upcoming holiday season.  We'll see how that impacts my gaming intentions heading into the new year.  There are a few games I'm really excited about, but they're all scheduled to release in November or December.

It looks like I get to keep working on my backlog for another month!

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Evergreen But Not as Welcoming

Exploring and revisiting some of my evergreen games this month has been interesting.  I'm finding that more of them have fallen off the evergreen playlist than I thought.

Two that are still "evergreen" in my mind are Team Fortress 2 and Counter-Strike Global Offensive.  But, I'm finding them much less welcoming than they once were.

It seems like all the casual fans of the game, including me, have drifted away from them.  All the players that are left are the players that never stopped playing the games.

Whenever I go online in either game I just get destroyed.  It's not as fun as it used to be.  I played both of these games a ton when they released and there were players of all skill levels.  Now, most of the players are very highly skilled and will destroy me.

They're not as welcoming as I wanted them to be.  It almost makes me afraid to even try some of the "higher skill" games that I've liked in the past, such as StarCraft II.  I feel like that one would be even worse.

I'm not a teenager and I haven't been for awhile.  I don't have hours every day to devote to getting good at one particular game.  I'll probably not have that kind of time again until both of my kids leave for college, and that's quite a ways off.

For now I'll just have to play these games less, else I get discouraged and give up on them forever.

It just makes me hold out hope for a Team Fortress 3 or a new Counter-Strike.  I would love to jump into a new game with a vibrant player base of all skill levels.

Friday, August 28, 2015

KOTOR II


KOTOR II recently got it's first patch in years to make it run better on modern hardware.  That, along with a community pack of bug fixes and content restoration on Steam inspired me to revisit the game.

I had played a handful of hours of KOTOR II when it first released.  I loved the original KOTOR but I never got beyond the first few hours of the sequel.  It was a buggy mess that wasn't worth the effort.

Fortunately, with the updates available, it's a much more stable game.  And seeing it run at 1080p was pretty cool too.  Good job patches!

Again I found myself tired of the game after only the first few hours.  This time not because of bugs but because of old gaming sensibilities.  This game just feels clunky.  It doesn't hold up to modern ease of use and control standards.  There are menus upon menus and lots of un-intuitive control schemes.

Once again I find myself done with this game without fully experiencing it.  But, that's ok.  I still have great memories of KOTOR that will always be with me.

The truth of the matter is that this really makes me want a modern KOTOR game.  Bioware would knock it out of the park.  They've learned so much about game making since KOTOR and KOTOR II were released.

A modern KOTOR on modern hardware would be simply amazing.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

What I'm Looking Forward to at PAX


By the time you're reading this I should (hopefully) already be in Seattle at PAX.  I'm super excited for my first (for fun) convention experience.  Here are a couple of the things I'm most excited for.
  • Spending time with my brother.
  • Thornwatch.
  • Wandering the floor and people watching.
  • Acquisitions Inc.
  • Discovering new games.  Video games or board games, I don't care.
  • Possibly getting to meet online friends face-to-face.
I can't wait to report back after the trip and let you know how it went.  Expect a couple regularly scheduled posts between now and then to tide you over.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Who's Going to PAX?


I mentioned it earlier this month, but it's worth saying again.  I'm going to PAX!  And I'm super excited about it!

I realized that it would be awesome to meet up with some of the blogging community that I regularly interact with.  If any of you dear readers plan on attending you should totally let me know.  I'd love to meet up on the show floor and say hi in person!

Honestly, the best way to get in contact with me will be on Twitter.  It's my primary social media these days.

I also still have no idea how to attend a convention for fun, so any tips and tricks are 100% welcome.

I'm heading out to Seattle tomorrow, so feel free to hit me up @grnmushroom if you're interested!  I should be around for the whole show.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Potential New Evergreen Games

After talking yesterday about an evergreen game that has faded away for me I thought it would be appropriate to talk about some that may become new evergreen games.

I've found myself spending a bunch of time with both Crypt of the Necrodancer and Mini Metro lately.


Crypt of the Necrodancer is a rhythm based dungeon crawling roguelike music game.  I'm still not very good at it, but I keep coming back for more.  I've been using it to fill in spare time here and there between other games.

I feel like Crypt of the Necrodancer could go one of two ways.  I could get good at it by continually coming back to it or I could get frustrated that I'm not making enough progress and give up on the game for good.  If the first happens then this could become one of my future evergreen games.  Only time will tell.


Mini Metro, on the other hand, I'm fairly sure will stick with me for the long haul.  I love this game so much.  Organically drawing out metro train routes between stations should not be this fun.  It's ridiculous how good this game is.

My only complaint, and it's not really a complaint, is that it's only on PC at the moment.  If this game ever comes to iOS I'm going to be in trouble.  I already lose hours of time to this game on PC.  If it's on my phone, always within arms reach.... who knows how much time I'll put into it.  I so hope it happens.

Have you guys discovered any potential evergreen games lately?  I'm always looking for more!