Fall Update and Missing my Friends

Between an insanely busy work schedule during the day, and continuing the work on my Novel at night, I have had very little time to post, of late.

To all my gaming friends, I seriously miss spending time chatting and following what you are all doing.  To all my Twitter friends, gaming or not, I need to spend more time keeping in touch!  Sorry!

By the way, what are the big games that I need to follow these days?  I’ve seen a bit of press about Final Fantasy.  Is that game still all the rage?  What kind of subscription model does it use?

I have had some serious urges to get back into some of my old favourites, notably, TSW, SWTOR, and Guild Wars 2, but I dare not, at least not until I fully add writing as a Habit, and not just a passing fancy.  I fear that gaming will suck me back in too far, and I will lose my drive to continue writing.  That would be sad because, for the first time in my life, I feel that I truly might actually finish something substantial.  My plan is to get something published in 2014.  Wish me luck!

Once I am finished the first draft of my Novel, I am going to reward myself with some time catching up on some games.  There are a few games that will absolutely pull me back.  First of all, Thief (Feb 2014).  I have been waiting a very long time for that!  Dragon Age Inquisition is a no brainier as well, but that’s a year away still so it’s hard to ramp up the hype meter!  I think I might have a more serious look at Elder Scrolls Online and Wildstar as well.  It’s been a long time since I got into a good MMO!

As for the new friends I am meeting with my writing, how are things?  I have to say that the Holly Lisle How to think Sideways course, and the people I have met inside her community have been an amazing support to me throughout this past summer and fall.  I would not be where I am in this journey without all of you!  To any people who have ever considered writing, I highly recommend checking out Holly’s site.  She even has a free “Flash Fiction” course that is really fun and very informative.  When my Novel’s first draft is complete, I’ll be taking some time to work through that course more thoroughly.  My intent is to self-publish some flash fiction; maybe as an anthology.  I’ll need Beta readers, by the way.  Let me know if you are interested!

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I am still around

My game time has become almost non-existent these past weeks. A combination of too much work and too many family activities has contributed to the demise. I am not upset about either of those reasons, however, especially the family one. As my kids grow older (18 and 14) I realize how short a time I have left to just be with them on a regular basis. It’s kind of scary, actually. There were many times throughout the early years that I couldn’t imagine feeling the way I do now. If you have young children, do yourself a favour and cherish the time. And if you don’t have children, then you should start planning to have some. They are worth every last ounce of blood sweat and tears, and they are definitely worth missing out on video gaming time!

I stopped playing GW2. It just got repetitive for me around level 30.  I will probably go back to it here and there, when the urge to play an MMO hits. Actually, I think I am MMO burned out, however (see my last blog).

With the limited time available over the past month, I have played through the Battlefield 3 campaign, done a little more Portal with my daughter, played some Icewind Dale II, and delved casually into Star Trek Online. All good experiences, I might add.

In addition, I am in a few closed Alpha/Beta tests.  I can’t really say anything about that, nor can I name names, but both games are coming along great, and I will be playing them both when they hit the streets!

Lastly, I have been feeling a little more D&D these days, so I am changing my main Avatar, across all my online places, to the one below. It is based on a free Dwarf avatar that I had a friend do some re-colouring and touching up. He did a great job, too!

Burned Out?

Just a few distractions 🙂

Why am I feeling burned out these days?  I can’t seem to shake the feeling that I am just mindlessly grinding through the next area, the next level, the next story point, the next quest.  Gone seems to be my excitement and verve for the games that I have loved so much.  I feel like a hummingbird, speedily flitting about from game to game, and experience to experience.  Is it me, or is it a sign of a change in the times?

When I first started playing World of Warcraft, I stayed “committed” to that game for 4+ years. Not until Lord of the Rings Online came about did I even remotely consider playing a different game.  Honestly, when I first jumped into the LOTRO Beta based on an invite from some friends, I felt I was cheating on my “first love”!  Eventually, I got my head around making the switch, but it was traumatic (from a gaming perspective, anyway).  Ultimately, I purchased the Lifetime subscription in LOTRO, and proceeded to play for 3+ years.  Not as long as WoW, but, still a pretty good run.

I can’t even remember the game that I switched to from LOTRO, no, wait, I remember now. It was Age of Conan! I fell hard and deep into that game. I even became part of their volunteer online support community for a time.  It was a lot of fun, but lasted less than a year. The game just couldn’t keep me as I had no friends playing it at all.  I went back to LOTRO, eventually, but never ever found back that initial love.  The only real thing that kept me going back was my friends, who were still playing there.

In between then and now, the Dragon Age franchise held my rapt attention for quite some time (pre and post launch), but the hours needed to complete those game is nowhere near the requirements of an MMO. My desire to re-live my Neverwinter Nights days by playing with the “Toolset” became invalidated when I realized just how complicated it would be to do anything meaningful without separate degrees in programming and game design.  I loved Dragon Age, I liked Dragon Age 2, I am hopeful for Dragon Age 3.

There’s also Steam,  and a lot of games that I own, but have never played;  yet still, quite a few I have played.  Torchlight, Orcs Must Die, Skyrim, Portal, Portal 2, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, and, of course, the Mass Effect games, among others. Minecraft was also a lot of fun, for a while!

My hype level leading up to Star Wars: The Old Republic was 11 out of 10.  I still love to just play through the story, but once again, without friends to share the enthusiasm, it’s just not something I feel the desire to continue to play.  I am really sad about this one, because I absolutely love the community, I love Bioware, and I especially love the many SWTOR devs that I have developed relationships with through Twitter, Podcasts, etc.  I will still play through stories in F2P mode, after the subscription model is gone.

So where does this leave me? I am still playing GW2. I pulled out Skyrim again over the weekend, but maybe I need to do something totally different?  Maybe I am weary of the genre?  Of gaming?  Perhaps I should try to find a love for Strategy games, one that I have attempted to nurture on many occasions, but have never truly succeeded? Maybe my readers can point me to greener pastures?  I am interested to know what you all think I should do during this time of uncertainty! Drop me a comment and let me know.

First, of Many?

I would love to promise myself that this will be the first of many Blog posts.  I guess, if we wait long enough, there may be many.  This is not my first time attempting to “blog”. I have various blogs scattered throughout the internetverse! Regardless, I hope to be more consistent this time around, but no promises, unfortunately. 🙂 So let’s get started with something very simple!

Here are the games that I am playing, as of the writing of this “first post”.

Star Wars The Old Republic

SWTOR

Novare Coast, a Warzone.

Guild Wars 2

Guild Wars 2 - Humans

A very unique MMO implementation

Here are the games that I am following (the top ones, anyway) as of this “first post”.

#BGEE

I love this image!

Neverwinter

I am keenly interested in “The Foundry”

So here’s to a new start!