Wednesday night was date night, and as is tradition for Manthing and me, we sat down in front of the television to watch something and eat dinner to kick off our weekly four-ish hours together. Sometimes we watch something on Netflix (most recently IT Crowd and Sherlock), or pick a movie (recent selections including Aquaman and 10 Things I Hate About You), but it is typically something that one or neither of us has watched in entirety.
This past week, we watched Detective Pikachu. Neither one of us had seen it, and he was looking forward to watching it, whereas I was indifferent to seeing the movie.
Overall, I thought it was okay. The ending was a feel-good ending, but the ridiculousness of the writing in the first twenty minutes or so of the movie was off putting, and then carried into the entirety of the movie for me. It almost felt as though the writers were trying to make Deadpool, but for kids. I just couldn’t get over the start of the movie and get fully immersed into the rest of it until very close to the end.
I want to give the movie another try, and see if maybe having a bad day (I was in a lot of pain) affected my initial opinions of the movie. Right now I don’t think I’ll go out of my way to watch it again, but I wouldn’t change the channel if it were on.
It’s taken us some time due to the fact it was summer, and people have lives, but Iron Circle finally downed Azshara on normal! We’ve been close for a couple raid nights, but just didn’t have the people to get her through. Now that she’s down, though, we’re focusing efforts back on pushing heroic.
The cutscene you get after defeating Azshara actually made me squee a little bit. Azshara and the old gods are some of my favorite Warcraft lore, and it’s felt like a long, slow, slog to even get to this point of the story since Battle for Azeroth started. Now that it’s here, I’m excited. I just hope Blizz keeps up with it, otherwise I’m going to lose my interest very fast once again. (Cutscene has spoilers!)
The other day I decided to turn a post from 2017 into some prompts for folks. Part two’s prompts can be found here. It comes to an end with this post, part three of three!
(Unrelated: I know I’m “behind” on posts, and while depression may have gotten the best of me for the past few days, I’m going to try to post an extra post or two every so often to try and catch up on the 31 posts. I may not hit 31, but I very much want to try.)
Just like with the antagonist question in part 2, I’m not particularly sure how to answer this one. There’s lots of characters I like, but there’s no real single protagonist I can pull out and say, “Yes! This is my favorite!”. I attribute this to playing mostly MMOs. I think I’d have a better answer to this if I had played more RPGs when I first started gaming, or if I played more now.
Game You Think Had the Best Graphics/Art Style
WildStar. I know it’s still not everybody’s cup of tea with the art style, but how can you go wrong? I loved it so much. It made me so happy with how unique it was.
Favorite Classic Game
What defines something as a “classic” game? To be fair, I really only played a few handheld games until we got an N64 in the house, but I never really had any other consoles until I purchased a PS2 in college. So I never really played a lot of “classic” games (if I’m thinking of what might actually classify as “classics”).
I unashamedly adore the voice acting in Secret World. It helps that I love that Jeff Combs and Armin Shimerman do various voices throughout the game. But overall, the voice acting and character development are what make me keep going back even if the combat makes me twitch.
Most Epic Scene Ever
What defines a “scene”? A cutscene? I think one of the ones that has stuck with me the most is the reveal of Drusera’s connection to the Entity we saw in Blighthaven in WildStar.
Favorite Game Developer
I’m going to leave details for Developer Appreciation Week, but I really dig Aksys Games. I’m sure it helps that they’ve pushed to localize a lot of otome. By extension, I suppose Idea Factory (and their Otomate brand) is probably one I adore, since those are the games getting localized. Though favorite… I don’t know if I could claim a favorite. I loved Carbine for WildStar. I love Funcom for Secret World… This would be like picking your favorite child.
A Game You Thought You Wouldn’t Like, but Ended Up Loving
To be brutally honest? WildStar. “What, Chestnut? YOU? Not like WILDSTAR?!” I know, I know. But when I played in the beta, while I was intrigued, it didn’t quite grab me. And I thought come launch that I just… wouldn’t like it. But I’d play it because that’s what my Ex and his friend wanted to play. In the end, I loved the game more than they did, and it still makes me sad that it’s gone (even if I wasn’t playing much at the end).
Your Favorite Game of All Time
This isn’t a fair question. This is, once again, like asking to pick a favorite child. Of all time? This could change the moment I play another game, and something gets replaced. Does it require that it is something I could pick up and play again at a moment’s notice and have fun with it? Is it something I can leave as one-and-done? Could I count an MMO for this? I honestly just don’t know. There are so many games that I could list for this as an answer (WildStar, Secret World, EVE, Hatoful Boyfriend, Skyrim, Code Realize), but none of them feel completely “right” as the most favored.
The other day I decided to turn a post from 2017 into some prompts for folks. I’m continuing it with this post, part two of three!
Gaming System of Choice
I know it’s cliche, but it really is the computer. When it comes down to it, I do love my handhelds and PS4, but I just have a larger collection on the computer than anything else.
A Game Everyone Should Play
My top four suggestions are not everybody’s cup of tea, but they include: Secret World Legends (for the story), The Park, Hatoful Boyfriend, and Code: Realize.
A Game You’ve Played More Than Five Times
Pretty much any of the dating sims I’ve played could fall into this category. I have to (aka like to) 100% the game for all the CGs and story!
Current or Most Recent Gaming Wallpaper
Uh, so it’s one of the CGs from Code: Realize of Saint Germain, but I don’t feel right posting it on this blog because it could very much be construed as if it were NSFW, even though he’s pretty much trying to murder the MC.
Post a Screenshot from the Game You’re Playing Right Now
Game with the Best Cutscenes
I honestly don’t know if I could choose. Especially since some games, like Detroit: Become Human, are changing the way that cutscenes work.
Another one that I honestly don’t know the answer to. I don’t play many games that have memorable antagonists, or ones I’ve connected with on any particular level.
Picture of a Game Setting You Wished You Lived In
I could say “visual novels”, or “dating sims”, or in particular, “otome”. But it really just comes down to a game with a story that I find captivating.
Game with the Best Story
Right now I’d really have to say it’s a toss up between Elder Scrolls Online and Secret World Legends for me.
A Game Sequel Which Disappointed You
I don’t do many sequels. The only game sequel I even own is the second Code: Realize, and I have yet to play it, so I don’t have an answer to this one, I suppose.
This is a post that has been sitting in my backlog since 2017. It’s one of those evergreen pieces I mentioned it is a good practice to have around for bad days. And today was a bad head day. It wasn’t as difficult to get out of bed this morning as it has been the past few weeks, which is a plus, but it has been a very difficult day for concentration, focus, and parsing of feelings and thoughts (not exceptionally brain weasely, per se, but they’re there in the background). I even took a nap when I got home from work because I didn’t feel like I could reasonably function for the remainder of the day if I didn’t.
I really didn’t want to miss a day of Blaugust, but figuring out what to write about, despite plenty of half-written posts and ideas was difficult. I went through seven or eight different posts now in various states of done-ness, and nothing felt exactly… right. There was lots of over-thinking and self-doubt. So I figured something a little more light-hearted and fun was a good idea. Plus, I figured I’d split it into 3 parts, and people could also use it for prompts since it is Topic Brainstorming Week this week for Blaugust!
I pulled this idea from Wolfy back in 2017. At the time there was one of those, “here’s a picture with questions, I’ll answer a question for every like!” things going around the gaming/blogging Twitter. I’m terrible at keeping up with those, the majority of the time, but had really wanted to participate in it. I saw that Wolfy had co-opted in a blog post format and thought it would be much more fun to do it that way as well… since you were still limited to 140 characters at the time!
Your First Video Game
I honestly can’t remember. I think it was something like Megaman or the Mario Bros. game where you jump around dodging stuff Kong throws at you to try and rescue Peach. I know it was something handheld that was on the original Gameboy. The first real one I remember is playing Paperboy after our grandmother gave my brother and me a Nintendo 64. That game was terrible but also so much fun.
Your Favorite Character
For those that know me well, this comes as no surprise. (I always end up loving the [SPOILER] murder-husbandos in dating sims, somehow…)
A Game That is Underrated
There’s a lot of games that could fit this, and choosing one out of all of them is a difficult task. But honestly, I think it’s going to have to be The Park. A lot of people don’t think they’d be interested in it because it’s, “just a walking sim”, but the depth of the story was pretty incredible for a few hours of gameplay. I do think it seems to resonate more with folks that live with mental illness compared with those that don’t, as well. Regardless, it’s a game I wish more folks would try (if horror is your thing). It’s also made by Funcom, and considered canon to Secret World, so that also works a little bit in its favor for me.
Your Guilty Pleasure Game
I could swear I’ve written about how much I love this game previously (but can’t find the post), but it is Monster Rancher Advance (1 and 2), hands down.
Game Character You Feel You Are Most Like
I don’t ever particuarly identify with video game characters. I suppose the closest would be any MC in an otome. While they’re their own characters, I always end up picking what I would want or do rather than what I think the character would want or do.
This is a difficult one for me. The only games I’ve truly played that had a focus on a love story of some sort have been dating sims, and while I have favorite pairings there, I don’t feel they fully apply, because it’s the fact that I like the character I pick as the MC, rather than the MC as a couple with the chosen character.
I’m honestly not sure. I have cried at a handful of video games, but I couldn’t, off the top of my head, tell you which one has been the saddest for me. Or even remember which ones I specifically cried over. So I’m going to tweak this prompt: Most Memorable Time a Game Made You Sad/Cry. And that, honestly, would have to be when WildStar shut down.
Heck, I honestly don’t know. I don’t really pay attention to gameplay within a game unless it annoys me or truly makes the game unplayable for me. I do have to admit that I enjoy telegraphs and slightly more active combat, especially in MMOs. So as far as MMOs go, I’d list WildStar, and ESO. Secret World could almost make it on the list if certain aspects of movement weren’t so dang clunky.
I’ve never been a big fan of fighting games. I’ll play brawlers like Smash Bros if it’s with the right people and I’m in the right zone. Otherwise, I much prefer to watch folks play fighters. That thinking changed, slightly, the day I saw the game Them’s Fightin’ Herdssuggested in Steam.
My first thought was, “WHAT!? A MLP fighting game?! YES!” While it is not branded My Little Pony (nor related to Hasbro in any way), the art is created by Lauren Faust, creator of My Little Pony Friendship is Magic. So I’d still say it has a lot going for it. But it’s been sitting in my wishlist for far too long. I’ve been afraid to bite the bullet because, well, I typically don’t enjoy fighting games, despite this one looking so cute and cuddly.
I first discovered the Community Game-Along back in early 2016, where the theme was Dating Sim month! I had just gotten into otomes/dating sims for the first time (having played Hatoful Boyfriend as my first ever dating sim in August 2015), so I knew I had to check it out and join in. And I’ve intermittently participated since then!
I figure this is a good time to pick up Them’s Fightin’ Herds, and see if it floats my boat. Maybe I’ll even add it in to my streaming rotation for the month. I also hope to see more folks participating in the Community Game-Along this year and in years to come!
Something I’ve seen going around the blogosphere and twittersphere is this XKCD comic. And I figured it’d make a nice simple post to try to figure out which movie I like falls into this. I was a bit confused with “below 50%”, however, because there’s both an audience score and the “tomatometer”, so I decided to go by either score.
I found that one of my absolute favorite movies (starring Bill Nighy and Alan Rickman) scored a solid 19% on the Tomatometer, and a 55% on the audience score. What movie, you ask? Blow Dry.
A lot of complaints about the movie seem to be that it’s “too formulaic”, which, I agree, it is. But it’s sweet. It’s a story of choosing your family. It is one of the first representations of LGBTQIA+ family that I remember seeing. Plus it’s just funny and cute, and the soundtrack is so much fun. It’s one of those movies that I absolutely have to put on when I’m feeling terrible because I just can’t help but laugh at the quips that come standard with British humor.
Besides, it’s Alan Rickman. That’s honestly the reason I picked it up at Blockbuster the first time I saw it, but it’s not what made me love it. Have you guys done this “challenge” yet?
Gaming goals used to be something I posted monthly, but fell off at the end of 2018 with them due to, well, life. I figured I’d try to get back into them in some way or another, and Blaugust is a good opportunity to tackle that, especially as day job calms down a little bit with some reorg that’s happened recently, leaving me with some time for gaming that I haven’t truly had in quite a while.
I used to do goals as more of a running list of, “here’s things I want to accomplish, just maybe not necessarily this month!”. I kind of want to change that outlook, and make my lists a little more focused and truly month-based. So I plan to give it a try this month and see how it works out. Can I be more realistic about my goals? We shall see!
Today happens to be one of those days (that I mentioned in my prior post) where I’m adjusting what I may normally do to get a post out, but still be a tad interesting (hopefully). When I have rough days, sometimes it’s fun to binge on cute and fun YouTube videos. Most of the time I hit up the Royalty Soaps channel (and her brother’s new channel), because they’re just such peppy positive people, and how can you go wrong with watching some soap making?
Today, however, I found myself needing some music. But not just any music—music that makes you want to sing. I’ve watched some of the FBE channel on YouTube before, but most of the time the “[Age Range] Reacts!” videos don’t do it for me. Today, however, I stumbled on more of their “Try Not To Sing” series, and it was honestly just what I needed. At first it was easy not to sing along, but then all of their reactions and the songs themselves helped with the immediate feels and brought me back up to some semblance of normal. And then I found myself failing along with them, which was just as fun.
I know it’s not prompt week, but here’s a question for y’all: When you have a rough day, what kinds of things do you do to cheer you up?
Today marks the first day of Blaugust. This week, the theme is “Prep Week”. As explained by Bel, “This is a time for those of us in the community who have sorta figured this blogging thing out to help get you started with some tips and tricks style posts.”
I’m not always great at working within themes, but today inspiration came to me as I tried to work my way through another depressive episode to make this first post. (I’m fairly open about the fact that I have depression and anxiety. It’s something you may see mentioned here often.)
Chronic Illness Is a Thing
It’s a thing that many people deal with day-to-day, whether it be an invisible illness (mental illness, chronic pains, etc.) or a visible illness, it is something that can be especially draining. And some days, you just don’t have enough spoons to get done what needs to get done… so how does one even begin to tackle the “want to do”s, like blogging?
Well, that’s something you need to decide for yourself, but here’s some tips and tricks I use that may prove helpful for others.
Rabbit From a Hat
Sometimes it can feel like you’re doing magic tricks to tackle the “want to do”s. But there’s ways I’ve found to help me manage that. I’m hoping they prove of some use to others.
Sometimes, accept that it just can’t be tackled and change your goal. I know the vast majority of us have lofty goals to try and complete all 31 days with no issue. But sometimes, goals need to be adjusted so that you don’t run yourself ragged. While I very much wanted to try to get this post out today (and I succeeded) I also had to accept that maybe it wasn’t a good day to try.
Find other avenues if it’s too much. For me, this sometimes means writing it down in my bullet journal until I get to a place where I have the energy to sit at the computer to re-write, tweak, and find images to go with it. On really bad days, it could mean that I use a voice recorder on my phone and just speak my ideas until I get to a place where I can transpose them. Maybe for you that means you just post an audio log and add an edit to a post later transposing it. Or maybe you just leave the audio as-is on your blog. Don’t hold yourself to just writing walls of text.
Don’t hold yourself to writing walls of text. Yes, I know I just said this, but don’t feel obligated to hold yourself to writing more than one or two paragraphs. A great example is Aeyvi‘s blog/website Screenographic. Her posts essentially consist of a batch of photos in a gallery format. While not a traditional “blog”, per se, it’s still an amazing resource, and one I love to indulge in. If you’re not feeling walls of text, don’t do it. Post a bunch of screenshots you took and give a sentence or two. Or even just one paragraph is enough. Microblogging is a valid form of blogging.
Get ahead on the good days. If you’re lucky enough to have a few days where your spoon management has paid off, you might have some extra energy/time. Use these to your advantage and start putting together draft posts. Then when you have a bad day, pull out these (hopefully at least mostly finished) posts, add a tweak or two, and post it. These will probably have to be something a little more evergreen in topic, but you can always adjust something later (assuming it isn’t about current events).
Most importantly, don’t beat yourself up. This is a trap that everyone falls into, and I can attest it can be difficult to practice what you preach. But it goes back to the first point: accept that you just might not be able to tackle it. Sometimes, we just can’t do everything. Chronic illness is tough. And, at least for me, I get in a mindset of, “how can I not even handle this? I must be terrible!”. Luckily I have a wonderful Manthing who reminds me that no, I’m just doing the best I can.
And I want to tell all of you, if you run into this… YOU. ARE. DOING. THE. BEST. YOU. CAN. It won’t necessarily look like someone else’s best-they-can, and that’s okay. You’re on your own journey. Use it to your advantage. Work with it. Find new ways to tackle things. Y’all got this.