Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Goodbye to July.

So July has come and gone and unlike past months I've actually showed the blog some love. Much to the delight, or dissatisfaction to those who have yet to dump me from their reader. Since I hadn't posted much I figured I would do a wrap-up of what I've been playing for the month. Here's a quick spoiler, it's mostly been League of Legends.

Don't believe me? Well just take a gander at the Raptr widget which shows the top six games I've played time-wise for the month. It should be no surprise that I love LoL and am pretty much addicted to the game. It's hard to explain why, but I find myself wanting to play it rather than something else. It really has made the whole backlog meltdown thing a bit difficult.

I've actually played or tried to play ten games this month. Honestly I don't think trying to setup my gamepad to work with Binary Domain or trying to log in to play Age of Conan counts, but that did happen this month.

The game that doesn't appear on there is Rift. Thanks to a free play weekend I was able to log into Rift for the first time in ages and I have to be honest, I like the game. What I find interesting about my history with Rift is that I know for a fact I have two accounts. I purchased Rift once from Direct2Drive and once off Amazon, both times when on sale. The first time I played Rift I cancelled after my first month, and then my account or the Trion accounts were compromised, something like that. So I never bothered to try and fix things.

That would be why I purchased a second copy, cause I wanted to play and I remembered having account issues before, so I figured why not start off fresh. Unfortunately the release date for The Old Republic was announced and so rather than get involved with a game I knew I would stop playing when TOR releases, I just cancelled and never bothered to play again during the free month.

I think I played only around four hours this whole weekend, but I really enjoyed it a lot. I find myself wanting to play Rift more if only it wasn't for that darn LoL! But I am giving some serious thought to subbing to Rift for a month, we shall see.

There were a few surprises to me after looking at the total monthly hours played per game. The first was that I played nine hours of TOR. Why is that significant? Well because I cancelled my sub on the 18th just before I was to be billed. What this tells me is that I played for far more than I thought, and that means I was getting hooked in again!

The other surprise was that I've only played thirteen hours of TERA. I've been struggling with weather or not to give up on TERA for sometime even though I quite enjoy the game when I do log in to play. What this tells me is that I haven't been playing the game nearly as much as I thought and that I can in good conscience give up on TERA without worry.

A couple of things to note as well - I finished FEAR 3 two more times, again, and I've actually played some Champions Online and really enjoyed that as well. I haven't played CO since the f2p conversion, and boy has it changed since then. It's good, it's fun and I think I am going to be playing more of it again!

So there you have it, the month of July. Not too exciting really...

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Backlog Meltdown

So along with the inner debate that I posted about yesterday, I've also had this overwhelming desire to try and cut down on the backlog of games that I have waiting for me to play. Limiting my game purchases and cancelling my TOR sub are two ways I've helped kick start that plan. The one monkey wrench in the whole plan really is there are some games I would really like to go back and play.

I've come up with some lose guidelines to help with the whole process, you know, to help give me some structure this this otherwise silly obsession. At this moment I'm starting with games I currently have installed on my computer in order to keep myself from going crazy with the downloads. Also, some strategy games are going to be excluded from this project. The reason being that some of the strategy games I have require a great deal of time invested to learn and be able to play with some degree of success.

All this seems silly right? I've recognized that I have a spending problem when it comes to games. I also have a big problem with procrastination and using my time wisely, hence the backlog. You know I bought Onimusha for the PS2 on day one and I have yet to actually play the game? I still have it, and someday I'll get to it, but that's just an example of what I'm talking about.

This past week the worst possible thing happened - the Steam Summer sale. Massive sales on so many games that I could at some point play is like kryptonite to Superman. But I exercised some self control and made it out safely with less than forty bucks spent!

The four games I did pick up where Fable III, The Longest Journey and Dreamfall, and Machinarium. All four of these games I've really wanted for quite sometime and with the massive discount I figured now was as good of a time to pick them up. Not too bad if I say myself. I also purchased some DLC for a few games, something I'm sure I didn't need, but it was cheap!

The first game I decided to kick off this backlog meltdown was FEAR 3. Now I've played it before and finished it twice, and the only reason it was on the hard drive now was because I had a friend who wanted to play some coop, but they have unfortunately been addicted to Mass Effect 3 multiplayer.

FEAR 3 isn't nearly as spooky as the past two in the franchise, but it's a really good shooter that has just a few frustrating parts. Playing as Pointman gives you the typical FPS experience while playing as Paxton Fettel is where the fun really is at! Nothing is more fun then suspending an enemy up in the air and with the clench of your fist, you shatter them into a mist of blood and bone. It's pretty awesome!

So FEAR 3 is done and next on the list is....well I'm not sure. I was thinking of Kingdoms of Amalur for some RPG goodness, but the game is so generic and just way too long. I have Max Payne 3, Binary Domain, Modern Warfare 1-2-3, Arma II and even Battlefield 3 to choose from. The list is a little heavy on the shooter side, but it's a start.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The TERA-ble Inner Debate.

I don't know about anyone else, but I have a really hard time dedicating myself to a MMO these days. There are so many options to choose from between paid and f2p, I find I just don't have the time or discipline to stick with a MMO for any great length of time.

There was a time pre-son about five years ago where I had multiple active accounts. There was the Station Access, WoW, WAR, CoH, plus whatever console or non-MMO game I was playing at the time. These days for me that's just not a possibility anymore.

The problem for me today is that I have, or should I say had, and active account for The Old Republic since it released in December and an active account for TERA since it launched in May. Sometime around mid April into June I invested maybe ten hours into TOR. Between Battlefield 3, my growing addiction to League of Legends and now playing TERA, I found little interest or time to give to TOR.

In June I was able to get my first taste of PvP in TERA - and it sucked balls. It was at that point I started to question whether I was going to stick with the game after my four months were up. As it happens TOR finally started server transfers and patch 1.3 launched not too long after that so I found myself logging my time there instead of TERA.

The combat and the classes in TERA are amazing, they are so good. But I realized that TOR is actually the style of MMO that I most enjoy. TOR also has way better questing and story telling than TERA, something that has started to bother me quite a bit.

So what exactly is the TERA-ble debate? I decided at launch that I was going to give the game a fair chance and did a three month sub which ends at the end of August. I also know that I am not interested in the pvp, the crafting or the end game content. So I keep asking myself why bother playing till subscription expires knowing that I am likely not to play TERA from that point forward?

There are a few factors that are compounding the issue for me: I really love the combat and classes in TERA and would like to at least get one character to max level. However, I am really wanting to spend more time in TOR, everything about that game I love. Well, except the PvP. But I've also made a decision to limit the amount of purchases I make game wise till I melt down the back log of games that I have. That, my friends is a whole other post in and of itself.

So in a nutshell the debate is whether or not to stick with TERA till the end or just dump it and be done with the game entirely. In the mean time I went and canceled TOR seeing as it does me no good to have the guilt of paying but not playing in the back of my mind.

Monday, July 23, 2012

So Dramatic!

So this blog has been pretty silent for most of the year. My post a few days ago about GW2 was really something I thought up at the last second to keep from having another month with zero posts. Of course I didn't actually expect comments, so that was a nice surprise.

The reason for the inactivity has been for a couple of reasons. One is passion and the other was time. I had really lost all sorts of motivation months ago and began to question why I bother to even blog. What was the purpose? I don't pretend to be the best writer or the most popular blogger, and I certainly didn't want to start posting some sort of contrived, phony intellectual type article about some topic in the games industry that I could care less. I'm most definitely not popular enough to post one sentence links as a post and hope to receive mass amounts of comments, so that was out of the question as well. I guess I could do hateful and and argumentative posts about certain types of games and declare my opinion is the only valid one to have, but that too belongs to someone else.

I'm not the busiest man in the world; my job only takes about thirty hours of my life during the week so I actually nave quite a lot of free time to do things like blogging or playing games. The thing is reading the blogs on my reader and then trying to post something on a semi-regular basis takes a lot of time. It was just more time than I really wanted to invest for blogging honestly. Writing is probably the most time consuming portion for me, to the point of being agonizingly painful. Hmm, that's kind of like the same thing ain't it? I really like to write, I'm just not that good at it. It would, and still does take me a great deal of time to think about and put into words what it is I want to say.

Honestly I've just lost focus and become quite lazy when it comes to blogging. I'm going to continue to blog I think because I like having an avenue to voice my thoughts, frustrations or what have you about anything, mostly game related. It may not be interesting or even topical - heck, when GW2 comes out and I'm the only one not playing I'm pretty sure I'll have zero traffic.

Hmm, after reading through all this I feel like I've become all emo  and overly dramatic.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Hating on Guild Wars, Again.

I’m not sure what it is, but I have this tendency to dislike things based on them being extremely popular. It’s not always the case, but on occasion it does happen. One of those things I truly dislike is Guild Wars. I guess more specifically Guild Wars 2. See, I played GW back a long time ago, back when MMO actually meant something and not the generic term it is today. I enjoyed GW for about six hours, and then I was over it. I’ve tried a few times to give GW a chance, but I just don’t like the game.

My issue with GW2 has nothing to do with the game itself – I haven’t even seen or played the game. No, my issue comes from the notion that GW2 is the second coming, best thing since sliced bread, the savior of the MMO genre as it were. In all honesty it may very well turn out to be a great game, but I highly doubt it’s going to bring anything new and exciting to the genre.