Times Completed

So I’ve had this old box of blank cards that belonged to my deceased father laying around my house since I moved in, and for the longest time I had no idea what I wanted to do with them.  The box recently found its way on top of the small stand near my front door and has been sitting there next to the router since.  Then one day, when I was using the box as a hard surface to sign my pizza delivery receipt for the umpteenth time, it hit me:  I would use them to track how many times I finished a retro game!

A relic from the past

That’s a lot of games to track

So today, in an effort to keep myself entertained, I took out my handy dandy new label maker (just picked it up over the weekend and I’ve been dying to use it) and started making the cards while binge watching The World’s Most Extraordinary Homes on Netflix.  It’s only a 4 episode series but I love watching Piers and Caroline critique these amazing houses around the world.  It’s definitely made me love New Zealand even more than I already did.

Time to get to gaming!

First I thought I would write the date I beat the game on the card, but thought that after a while it would take multiple cards to keep track of the completion record.  So I’ve decided to just make tally marks which will take up less space on the cards.  Ultimately the dates that I beat a game don’t really matter anyway.

But I digress.  While watching the series for about the third or fourth time today and making more cards, a question came to mind:  when and why did I start to think of my retro games in terms of how many times I had finished them?

Labels, labels, labels

I suppose that idea was planted in my head when I decided to join Matty in the 52 games in a year challenge.  There’s only so much time in a year and replaying a game, such as an old NES or SNES title, would definitely help in padding the number of games you can finish in a year.  If it’s a game you know well, know where everything is and possibly know how to speedrun it, you’d be able to reach 52 quickly.  But if you’re playing nothing but new release titles, you don’t really have any idea when you’ll be finished and there’s always the possibility you’d be stuck on a game for longer than you anticipate.

The finished product.  Time to start gaming!

Sadly, this year has been kind of a bust so far in terms of games completed.  Emotional setbacks combined with equipment failures don’t exactly motivate me to get back up and keep trying, but hopefully soon I’ll get back on track and continue my trek to 52!


Saturday Morning

Outside the world was dreary, but vibrant with life.  Inside there was nothing but silence and the rolling screensaver from Netflix, another night of binge sleeping through all the episodes of Grace & Frankie.  I stumble, groggily, to the kitchen for coffee mulling over the disastrous and gross state of the floor.  Imagining the horror of tiles breaking as I rolled the refrigerator across them to position it back in its alcove on the opposite wall. Grout and sealant will be purchased this month, I thought, as the Keurig whined about making me a coffee.  If anyone could see my face right now, they’d think I was angry, when in fact I’m just trying to wake up.  I sat down and grabbed my laptop, thoughts swirling in my head like a storm that I must navigate.  The irritating sound of the windows rattling as the train passed by mingled with the tune to Sade’s ‘Soldier of Love’ as I thought about the events of the day.  Finally getting to have lunch with Glenn and William after nearly a month.  Glenn was finally getting the cabinet out of the front room.  It’s all starting to come together in there and will be “done” once I make a few more trips to IKEA for the shelving I want and once I decide whether to keep the rest of my World of Darkness books.  I say “done” as I still haven’t found the kind of video game decor for the room that pleases me that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg.  Where’s my damn coffee?  As I sip, I think about the year ahead.  Still filled with an amazing amount of dread over my future trips to Philadelphia to see Matty.  I can’t let what Jeffery said to me at the end ruin this beautiful and amazing city for me anymore.  There is still so much more to see and do and experience.  Fuck him, he’s dead anyway.  Chalk that one up to the mistakes pile along with Stuart and Chris and the innumerable list of things I wish I had and hadn’t said to the innumerable list of people I wish I had and hadn’t said those things to.

How many times have I listened to this damn song? Ugh…I’m a soldier of love, but I need something with a beat. Ah, here we go, some Slayer should do.

Opening my email anymore fills me with vomity horror as it’s never anything anymore but the shitty things that the Trump administration is doing.  Sign these 500 petitions to help save the world.  Yeah, right.  My emails anymore are nothing but an exhaustive list of shipments from either eBay, Amazon or Gaming Relics, or creepy emails from Target telling me “that thing you looked at is on sale, buy it”.  Stop being a creep Target.

Time for more coffee!  I’ve picked up the cup twice now and realized I drank it all.

Bloodborne.  It’s been 2 years since I beat the game with that gangly British twat’s help then subsequently abandoned once he got the platinum trophy.  This time around, I’ll get the damn platinum since my brothers in arms are playing it with me.  This will be the second game this year that I came close to getting the platinum in the past only to have victory jerked out from underneath me.  Infamous and the trophy glitch and then Bloodborne and someone else’s selfishness.  I can’t even listen to his music now without getting angry since he unfriended me a few weeks ago.  It’s whatever though.  Had anything ever come of it, it would have just been more amazing sex with a crazy person and we all know how that ends.

Looking at my release calendar, I need to do more writing.  Seriously.  I have so much to say and only so much time to say it.

There’s a lot to look forward to though.  E3 this year is going to be amazing.  There’s already been a few things announced that I’m interested in seeing more of (Smash Bros for the Switch? Yes please!) and other things that have been mentioned or shown in the past that I hope make an appearance this year.  E3 is almost like the carrot on the stick to help me and Matty get through the shitty opening to this year. It’s not been good for either of us, but I argue that it’s been a lot worse for him than for me.  10 hour work days along with winter storms that have knocked out power.  Just wanna give him a hug and remind him I love him and I’m here for him, always.  The other big event this year is the meetup in Atlantic City.  I’m still super nervous and full of dread about going to that too, but I’m sure it will be a good time.  Both events are definitely keeping me motivated to get up and keep on living.

Now that I’m fully awake and energized, there’s a lot to do and I have no motivation to do any of it.  Let’s do it anyway.

A Crack

Destiny, part 28

Imagine being in a dark room, perhaps a prison cell with no windows or doors.  Maybe even a deep, dark cave.  You’re there alone and all is silent, but miserable.  And quiet.  So very quiet.  Suddenly, off in the distance, or perhaps not so far, there is a crack.  It is small at first, and the light it emits is dim, but it is there none the less.  It is a sight that stings the eyes, for it is foreign and unfamiliar.

A crack in the darkness

It’s late at night and a couple members of the clan and I decided to play some Destiny 2 since the Bloodborne servers were down, probably thanks to the game being free this month for PlayStation Plus members.  I’m actually interested in playing Destiny 2 again now that the Nightfall isn’t a nightmare to complete anymore.  Last week, with the new system implemented, we tried it out and finished with a score around 20,000.  This week, we improved our score and got up to 26,000.

This week’s Nightfall is the Pyramidion again, but it’s at least not a total nightmare anymore.

What they’ve done – and should’ve done all along – is let you decide how hard you want to make Nightfall for yourself.  The non Prestige version has no modifiers, just a score and a clock that shows how long you’ve been at it.  The Prestige is where it gets interesting.  Now you can choose how hard you want to make the enemies you face and what burns you want to activate, if any.  Tonight we tried a Prestige run and managed to make it with minimal fuss.  Getting the Aura now is going to be just as difficult as before, and probably still not worth the effort.  Also, there’s specialized Emblems for each new Nightfall that can be customized assuming you hit the required score for each variant.  I’m happy with the way Nightfall works now and hopefully this means we as a clan will gather to do it each week now.

In other news, the latest Iron Banner is happening and I’m actually excited to participate because the Warlock armor is beautiful and looks very Asian inspired.  At least this time around I won’t be going in alone.

Now, let’s go get those treasure maps and head for Nessus…

Relationships, part 17


There was a time that I thought you were the one. There was a time that I thought you could be my boyfriend, my husband, my lover, my spouse, my power of attorney, my widow. There was a time that talking to you every day brought me joy, it brought me happiness. There was a time when I looked forward to talking to you, to gaming with you every day, to hearing your voice, to seeing your face. But now I don’t feel like I’m looking at the same person, I don’t feel like I mean anything to you anymore. I don’t understand what’s changed, what’s happened.

I didn’t think it was appropriate for you to send me snapchats of you and your boyfriend in bed together and I also thought it was a little tacky for you to send me snapchats while you were out doing stuff together. It was almost like you were rubbing it in my face that you had a boyfriend but I was still single. Speaking of snapchat, I found your excessive use of it (instead of carrying on a normal conversation like a normal person) to be very annoying. At least that’s one thing I’ll never have to deal with again.

Thanks for ruining The Smashing Pumpkins for me and I hope you can find people willing to put up with your stupidity enough to game with you in Destiny 2 and Killing Floor 2. If anyone between the two of us should be angry, it should be me. You pretty much just up and left me behind on consoles to go do PC gaming instead. I guess my friendship just wasn’t good enough for you, was it? You’re just like every other faggot I’ve ever met on the internet, only interested in me for my looks and once you got tired of looking at that you moved on. Typical.

Oh, and the beginning of the year when I was sick as fuck for like 3 months and you were being really pissy and annoying because you wanted to carry on a full on conversation when all I wanted and needed to do was rest and sleep? Fuck you for that too. I’m beginning to think that maybe the Canadians in Quebec and Nova Scotia are the only decent ones because the further west you travel the more you guys turn into assholes (just like Americans). I used to think your ex was an asshole for leaving you, but now I’m beginning to think that maybe he had the right idea. You’re just an asshole, plain and simple. If you wanted to know how I felt about you, you could have asked instead of making assumptions and spreading lies. Yes, there was a time that I liked you and thought you might have been the one, but that changed when I realized you’re a fucking drunk just like Jeffery was, and any hope I had for you died when you told me you used MDMA. I’m certainly not going to have anything to do with a drug addict, so why don’t you do everyone a favor and either overdose or get clean before you hurt someone else’s feelings.

I’m leaving you in 2017 with the rest of the trash. Goodbye and good luck.

Alanis Morissette – You Learn

Oh, oh, oh

I, recommend getting your heart trampled on to anyone, yeah
I, recommend walking around naked in your living room, yeah

Swallow it down (what a jagged little pill)
It feels so good (swimming in your stomach)
Wait until the dust settles

You live you learn, you love you learn
You cry you learn, you lose you learn
You bleed you learn, you scream you learn

I, recommend biting off more than you can chew to anyone
I certainly do
I, recommend sticking your foot in your mouth at any time
Feel free

Throw it down (the caution blocks you from the wind)
Hold it up (to the rays)
You wait and see when the smoke clears

You live you learn, you love you learn
You cry you learn, you lose you learn
You bleed you learn, you scream you learn

I, I, oh, oh

Wear it out (the way a three-year-old would do)
Melt it down (you’re gonna have to eventually, anyway)
The fire trucks are coming up around the bend

You live you learn, you love you learn
You cry you learn, you lose you learn
You bleed you learn, you scream you learn

You grieve you learn, you choke you learn
You laugh you learn, you choose you learn
You pray you learn, you ask you learn
You live you learn

Gaming Goals in 2018 – Update 2

And now…

  • Participate in the ’52 games in a year’ challenge to see how many I can finish.  Last year I think I clocked in somewhere in the 30-40 range.
  • Get 100% in Super Mario Odyssey
  • Finish routes C, D and E in Nier: Automata (even though I already know how the game ends) and maybe work toward the platinum.
  • Finish finding all the Korok Seeds and Shrines in Breath of the Wild and maybe give Master Mode a shot (though I doubt I’ll have the patience to stick with it).  Might also revisit the Champion’s Ballad DLC.
  • Start a New Game+ playthrough for Horizon Zero Dawn, Final Fantasy 15, and the DS version of Chrono Trigger (gotta get the rest of those endings!)
  • Play more retro games!  I’ve started rebuilding my collection, so I think it’s time to give those old games a replay and see how I feel about them after all these years.
  • Start a fresh game of Fallout 4 with all the DLC.
  • Play more PSVR games!  Hopefully I’ll be able to overcome my bouts of motion sickness soon.

Bleh.  Played a few more VR games/demos over the last 24 hours.  Played the demo for The Last Guardian VR and the rat/bird thing freaks me out.  Played the demo for Tiny Trax and I hate the steering controls so I don’t think I’m going to buy it after all, and finally I also played the demo for Fantastic Contraption.  I didn’t think it was all that much fun but maybe a price drop will convince me to buy it.  The 2 demos that I did enjoy were Moss and Star Child.  Both are amazing 3D platformers in VR and I can’t wait for them to be released.  Definitely day one purchases.  The only other VR game I played from start to finish was Gnog.  It’s an enjoyable little puzzle game about solving puzzles that are in the shape of boxes.  I’m sure that playing it in 2D isn’t as detailed as the VR but it’s still a lot of fun either way.  Now that I’ve beaten the game, I’m going to lay down.  Apparently my VR nausea hasn’t worn off.

What I’m Playing, part 24

Infamous: Second Son

Four years ago, Infamous Second Son was released during the PlayStation 4’s first year.  I had never seen anything like it at the time and thought the game was fun and amazing.  I enjoyed the destructibility of the environment and the fluidity with which Delsin moves about with the smoke dash and later on, his neon dash.  I was all set for Infamous to be my first PS4 platinum when tragedy struck.

One night of marathon gaming while playing Second Son I had unlocked several trophies and when time came for me to call it quits from exhaustion, I went to sync my trophies only to be met with an error and was forced to start over from scratch re-unlocking everything that I had already done.  At first I was horrified thinking that all the trophies were glitched and that my efforts were in vain, but once I started re-unlocking everything that I had done it put my mind at ease.  I had finished 2 playthroughs in a row:  one as good Delsin on normal difficulty and one as evil Delsin on Expert difficulty.  The good playthrough was the one where I “lost” some of my trophies and had to start over from scratch.  This was also the point where I just totally ragequit the game altogether.

Fast forward to 2018.  Since I am riding on the natural high from collecting all 900 Korok Seeds in Breath of the Wild and solving all 120 Shrines, I figured I might as well go back and finish one of the things in my backlog that’s bothered me since it happened.  I’m currently at good karma level 3 and working my way toward the first trophy I need – reaching level 5 good karma – fairly quickly.  The only other trophy I need is where I redeem Fetch once I find her.

As far as gameplay goes, this game isn’t as glamorous as I remember it.  Delsin still moves about rather fluidly, but I had forgotten that he’s not indestructible when it comes to combat.  I also had forgotten just how janky his movements are when it comes to climbing up walls.  This rendition of Seattle is just as cool as I remember it, and I still wonder why the city is rarely used as a setting (the only other thing I can think of right off the bat that used Seattle as a setting is the Shadowrun tabletop RPG).  I was stoked this time around because I found the infamous wall of chewed gum!

For future reference, the wall of gum can be found here.

I like how the weather and time of day changed based on the chapter you’re on in the main story.  The first chapter with rain was rather relaxing and the second one where the sunset is perpetual is pretty.

After a few hours, and a little bit of a scare (I thought I had progressed far enough to unlock the trophy but I hadn’t), I managed to unlock one of the two trophies I needed for the Platinum.

I love Fetch’s power!  But trying to subdue enemies with it is still as irritating as I remember it being.  I also love the infinite running at the speed of light ability.  It’s so fluid and quick.  It definitely has me ruined as far as traversal powers/abilities in other games are concerned.  I mean, it’s not often that you get the ability to straight up run up a wall, am I right?

Very cool scene but also very sad at the same time.

After reaching something like the game’s midway point in the story and a little more grinding, my for year long quest was finally at it’s end:

Platinum trophy #8 is finally mine.  Until next time Seattle, stay cool.

  • % of trophies at the time of writing according to PSN: 100% including the Platinum

PlayStation 2017 Year in Review

Got a really cool email last month from PlayStation that tracked my gaming throughout 2017.  So without further adieu, here’s 2017 by the numbers:

January 2, 2017 – first game played was The Division and the first trophy I earned was Medic!

Over the course of 2017 I played 1,882 hours on PS4 across 152 games.  The most progress was in March with 214 hours of gameplay.

The top 3 games I played across 2017 were:

  1. Destiny with 373 hours
  2. Destiny 2 with 327 hours
  3. Minecraft with 306 hours

(Geez, no wonder I can’t get anything in my backlog finished)

The top genre I played was First Person Shooter (thank you captain obvious)

I earned a total of 628 trophies all year.  453 Bronze, 132 Silver, 41 Gold and 2 Platinum (fail) but that does put me in the top 10% of all PlayStation trophy earners, so I guess there’s that.  June was my highest trophy earning month with 114 trophies earned.  The first Platinum trophy I earned in 2017 was in The Division.  I earned 628 trophies in 2017 versus 385 in 2016.

Most played online game was The Division.

Gonna be tough to beat that lineup in 2018, but I’ll give it my best shot.