18 November, 2012

Undying (not the old Clive Barker game)

written by Blain Newport on Sunday, 18 November, 2012

It's been a while. It felt like the blog had perhaps ran its course, like perhaps gaming had run its course for me. But here I am, back again. Enjoying what I love / in the throes of recidivism, retreating from reality. You make the call.


Charmont will continue, but not really. I was ready to really get into it up front. I was working on a back story for my character. Why didn't he still live in the forest, if he cared so much about the tribes? Why did he live as a craftsman in the city without any connections there? I wanted answers to these questions that would add a little depth to our collective experience. But then it took over a month to get our second session together, and our third session was cancelled earlier today. I will show up to Charmont.

Blood Bowl

The same pretty much goes for Blood Bowl. We've had three weeks in the season, and I've always had to be the person who initiates contact, and every time through multiple channels, to get the game underway.

Foosball and Street Fighter

I now only play these games for fun. After some accusations and rules mongering silliness, I decided I don't give a care about the bragging rights and a t-shirt that winning represents. I took myself off of both ladders. I still get asked to play foosball every other day and Street Fighter once or twice a week. That's probably a healthy amount.

Also I watched Thomas and Ki mess around with some random characters on Saturday. It was fun. Abel's ability to combo an opponent halfway across the field was amazing and Hakan's oil covered antics were hilarious.

Borderlands 2

I finished a playthrough of Borderlands 2. I don't think it will have the endurance that Borderlands 1 did for me. That's partly because I'm not made of free time anymore, but also because the difficulty for playthrough two ramps up fast enough that it's not really fun anymore. Plus the game adds a bunch of new enemy types with different elemental properties, so I have to carry way more guns and spend way more time in menus swapping between them. It's less fun the second time around.

Otherwise, it's a slightly better version of the original game. As with the General Knox DLC, they do a better job of characterizing the villain. They set the stakes higher by letting some named characters from the first game die (and revisiting the one friendly character who died in the first game). Mechanically it seemed like the random number generators behind the loot system were doing a better job of giving me interesting choices.


Given the amount of games I'm playing that I'm not really enthusiastic about, I would understand if you viewed this as recidivism. But in all those cases, it's the people surrounding the games and the circumstances of their lives that cause the trouble. The games are fine. They teach patterns, they teach math, they broaden experience, they entertain. Okay, they maybe do the first three (and sometimes even the fourth) less than they should, but that's the same in every medium, especially when budgets are big.