I’m In Love – Star Wars: Episode IX Teaser Trailer

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I can’t wait to see how this wraps up Rey’s story. After The Last Jedi, the table has been swept clean story-wise. Hoping JJ Abrams uses some of his magic like he did in The Force Awakens.

Bloodborne: Joy In Death

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Scuttlebutt on the street is that Dark Souls games are cruel. Punishing difficulty. Death equaling toys being taken away. A regular playground bully of a game series.

Firing up Bloodborne, I expected a steep learning curve. Dying over 30 times on the first nether beast, I thought that my experience was par for the course. Maybe the game doesn’t give you weapons for awhile? My fists of fury will triumph! And they did. After many rolls, dodges, and time, the nether beast died. Joy to the world.

Death is the teacher in Bloodborne. My moment of joy pooled in blood. I can hear Han Solo telling Luke Skywalker in A New Hope, “Great, kid! Don’t get cocky.” Best advice ever.

My friend Scotto noticed that I had taken up the hunt in Yharnam. He sent me a link to a walkthrough he is using. He noted:

“Helped a ton, and the author is pretty funny.”

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My character looks like Harry Potter. Complete with wire rim glasses. Will take a screenshot of him soon.

Geared up, I restarted the game with a new character. Picked up weapons in Hunter’s Dream. The hunt begins now.

Exploring the city, I take on it’s infected denizens with ease. Silly me to think that the game was sadistic enough to hold back weapons. Rolling, coming up behind an enemy, pure mechanical satisfaction. I found myself smiling. Until I embraced cockiness and died. I laughed.

Bloodborne could be the most fun I’ve had gaming in a long time. The challenge and skill level demanded is perfection.

I walk around screaming, “Bring it, monsters!” Forgetting that the blood shed comes at a price.

I have enjoyed knocking on closed doors in the city. People answering me on the other side. Revealing a small bit of story. Hunkered down until the madness of my hunt comes to an end. Am I damned to slaughter the infected forever? As long as I have my trusty cleaver and blunderbuss, I’m good with whatever the game wants to throw at me. Roll, fire, slash, repeat. Another night, another hunt.

Roughhousing

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One of my earliest memories of my Grandpa Ayers is of him and I roughhousing. Long before I was old enough to know what Star Wars was, he would tell me that he was Darth Vader and that I was Luke Skywalker. We’d sword fight with yard sticks, up and down the hall in their house, until my Grandma Ayers would tell us to knock it off. I miss those days.

Was listening to The Art of Manliness Podcast today– I have been slowly moving through their backlog–. Today’s episode was on The Art of Roughhousing. I want to encourage you to check it out. The benefits of roughhousing with your kids is huge! Even if you have girls. You can find the show here.

The Star Wars of Video Games

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Out of the now six Star Wars movies, The Empire Strikes Back remains my most favorite. I love the epic battle of Hoth, main characters parting ways, and the overall darker tone of the film. Life, in the shadow of the Empire, is harsh and cruel for those serving the Rebellion–as it should be!–. The events in this middle film leave you wondering how much worse things can get for Luke Skywalker and his ragtag group.

Lately, I’ve been playing through Mass Effect 2. Like The Empire Strikes Back, Mass Effect 2 is the middle chapter in an epic space trilogy. Currently I’ve played the game for over 18 hours. So far, Mass Effect 2 has largely been about constructing the perfect A-Team. The typical structure of the game has been: 1) Hunt down new team member, 2) Recruit them and take them back to the Normandy, 3) Eventually work through a “personal” mission to gain their loyalty. Wash, rinse, repeat. Yet, somehow, I have been pulled into this world filled with Krogans, Reapers, and a man named Shepherd.

What made The Empire Strikes Back so phenomenal, was that it took characters you had grown emotionally attached to in Star Wars and then took them to the breaking point. In doing so, a deeper emotional attachment occurred, one that would eventually  allow you to be able to sit through The Return of the Jedi. Mass Effect 2, while seemingly built on emotion, often feels false and empty. I can’t quite put my finger on it but something is off. Don’t get me wrong, I have enjoyed my time playing the game. I just think that my disconnect with the characters may have something to do with only playing about 5 hours of the first game before quitting.

The Normandy SR2

I keep waiting for that Empire moment in Mass Effect 2; I keep waiting for that moment when I am more emotionally bonded with the characters, like in a good book. As it stands, if the Normandy blew up again, with the entire crew inside, I don’t think I’d care. I’d slowly put down the controller and wonder why I had wasted so much time.