Dragon Quests and Man Colds

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Sunday morning, I announced to my Sunday school class that I felt a man cold coming on. I asked for everyone to sign up to bring meals for me. Tabitha wasn’t in the room at the time (she was checking kids in), so I also made them promise not to say anything to her. Sadly, no one took me up on my dire request for sustenance.

By Sunday evening, I was running a fever. Ended up taking Monday off as a sick day. I slept a chunk of the day.

Yesterday, I visited a clinic. Found out that I have both a sore throat (which I didn’t know) and a sinus infection. So now I’m on antibiotics and out of it at work. Seriously, I just went to CVS to pick up a birthday card for a co-worker. When I got back to work, I wondered how I ever drove to CVS (felt that out of it).

Sat down last night and had a chance to play some more of Dragon Quest XI. I wasn’t so sure about my decision to pick up the game last weekend. The GameStop employee wouldn’t stop gushing over the new Spider-Man game. Even going as far as to say it made him cry at least 3 times, and he doesn’t normally cry. I told him I was going to Redbox Spider-Man and instead introduce my son to a non-Final Fantasy JRPG.

There is a cadence to Dragon Quest XI. A rhythm to the overall pacing and storyline. I wasn’t sure, at first, if I liked how slow the game felt. But the more time I have put into Dragon Quest XI (sitting at about 3 1/2 hours so far), the more I’ve come to appreciate what the game is.

Be a man…. We must be swift as the coursing river.

Last night, I was making my way through a wooded area when I came across a dog. The dog woofed at me and then I kept going until I came to a bridge that was destroyed. Needing to find a way forward, I backtracked to where the dog was and noticed that he wanted me to follow him. So I followed the dog up a path. It was then that I found some sort of shimmering ball that I touched. Suddenly, I saw a memory of a woodcutter upset that the bridge he had built had been destroyed. Turns out a monster had destroyed the bridge and had then turned the woodcutter into a dog. Things are not always as they seem, right? I then pursued the monster, battled him, and returned the woodcutter back to his human form. He then rebuilt the bridge, and I was on my way.

Dragon Quest XI, so far, has told stories that are not original but that are executed in clever ways. The woodcutter/dog story caught me by surprise. It was a small quest story that showed a lot of thought, especially for what is supposed to be an 80 hour game.

At 3 and 1/2 hours, I have picked up one party member so far (Erick). I’m looking forward to the adventure that is it come and to enjoying the journey along the way.

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From Across the Net – “10 Incredible Women of Gaming and Their Impact”

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Love Thy Nerd posted an article today titled “10 Incredible Women of Gaming and Their Impact”. I appreciated that Lightning from Final Fantasy XIII was on the list (have always liked her as a character). I do wish though that this line from the opening paragraph was not included (bold emphasis mine):

Here are 10 women from video games who are powerful, brave and inventive—far more interesting than all of the Nathan Drakes, Adam Jensens, and Soldier 76’s littering the gaming landscape. You can read more here

I’m not sure why we can’t celebrate female characters in gaming without comparing them to men let alone taking a jab at male characters. What if I find Nathan Drake just as interesting as Samus? Can’t we love both without labeling one gender more interesting than the other?

On My Rader – KURSK

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KURSK has ran silent and deep off my radar up until this last week. I’m surprised at the amount of detail and even the genre of the game, which is being billed as an adventure-documentary. I’m all for historical tourism by video games. Curious to see how the adventure, narrative, and gameplay come together. Can’t wait until KURSK surfaces on the PS4.

Not in My House – PlayStation Classic

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Woke up this morning to read that Sony has decided to cash-in on the retro console movement with their own PlayStation Classic. This $100 PS1 features 20 games, including Final Fantasy VII. With my foot firmly in place, the PlayStation Classic will never enter my home.

The Foot is Down!

How else am I supposed to teach Wyatt about games curation and corporate greed? Take Final Fantasy VII for instance, the game is available on just about every format. As with Skyrim, I’m sure you’ll soon be able to play Final Fantasy VII on your refrigerator door. Greed lives on your refrigerator door. Don’t feed greed nor the need to play games on appliances.

The PlayStation Classic is worthless beyond nostalgia. Sony has had most of the PlayStation 1 library available for years on the PlayStation Store. The games are playable on modern consoles and televisions, right now. No special $100 box and original uncomfortable controller required.

I understood why Nintendo released the NES Classic and SNES Classic. Both featured games that were hard to find, expensive, and did not play well with modern TVs. Providing many popular games, in one box, with a save state feature, was a total win-win for gamers everywhere. Not so much with Sony’s PlayStation Classic.

I will not be spending $100 for what amounts to a repackaging of games already available on my PlayStation 4. I’d like to say that I’d be interested in a PlayStation 2 Classic but all of the games I’d want are already available in HD remastered glory, today!

You dug too deep into the gaming mine, Sony. You have plundered the riches of your history through constant availability. As for me and my house, we will not be buying a PlayStation Classic. Wyatt’s not getting one of these for Christmas.

Happy Friday – The Rainbow

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Woke up this morning and didn’t want to get out of bed. Had mowed the backyard for about an hour the night before. My body hurt. Tab and I eventually decided to go for a walk to start our day.

Rainbow

Thankful we got to see the rainbow pictured above. Was one of those rainbows where you could clearly see the individual colors. The sky on the flip side of this photo was a beautiful pink.

Despite the rain we’ve had lately, Tab and I have been getting up and walking in the morning. There is something nice about starting the day with your best friend, enjoying the cool weather together.

Sonic Rip-off

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Wyatt and I went to GameStop and traded in a bunch of his 3DS games for credit. He claims he is finally done with Pokémon until the Switch version comes out in November. Wyatt then picked up Sonic Forces with his newly acquired funds. Being the good dad, I had read several reviews on the game. I knew that Sonic Forces wasn’t supposed to be all that great. However, my knowledge and preferences paled in the light of a little boy who had credits burning in his pocket. We exited the store with Sonic Forces for the Switch.

He played for a chunk of Saturday afternoon.

He then had a friend over later on in the week. Wyatt’s friend told him that he was close to the end of the game. Surely not, I thought. He just got the game. There is no way he is almost finished.

A quick Google search proved Wyatt’s friend correct. Sonic Forces is a 4-5 hour game at best. $40 for 4-5 hours worth of gameplay. I know we could get into a debate on a game’s value versus time, but I don’t want to go there. But I do want to note that in addition to checking a game’s content, one might also want to check a game’s length.

Sonic Forces = $40 new (no used copies)

GameStop Trade-In Value = $22

Maybe, in the end, the game being short is a good thing. Less time for Wyatt to hog the Switch. More time for him to get outside and enjoy the fresh air. Now if only the weather would cooperate and stop raining. Do you hear me, Texas? I’m tired of the 90 degree weather mixed with low 70’s and rain. Bring on the Fall!

Destiny 2 – Send the Light

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Finished up the original Destiny 2 campaign over the weekend. Bungie managed to tell a somewhat decent story. I loved the bookends, the beginning and the end of the game. But I’m still not sure what happened in the middle… Cayde-6 and I are now friends? Tight gunplay mechanics continue to rule the series. No matter what, Bungie knows how to make a shooting game feel good. Real good. In the end, I wish had some friends to play through Destiny 2 with.

Destiny 2 isn’t perfect, but I enjoyed what I played. The game makes me miss the Master Chief of Bungie’s Halo. The Guardians, the Destiny player characters, lack character. The calm and determined physical presence of the Master Chief would certainly be most welcome.

My Guardian.