In Review – May 2023

  • Make at least 8 blog posts during May.
  • Complete the 10.1 story content in World of Warcraft.
  • Play and write about at least one game for #MetroidvaniaMay.
  • Play and write about one title purchased in April 2023.
  • Participate in the group review of the May Humble Choice.
  • Spend at least 10 hours gaming on the Steam Deck in May.
  • Read / listen to at least four books.
  • Watch at least one new-to-me movie.
  • Watch at least one new-to-me series, mini-series or season.
  • Do 5000 stitches during the month of May.

The only miss I’m somewhat annoyed with myself about is the blog posts, otherwise, I did far better than I actually expected I would this month.


This was another really weird month for me gaming-wise. A little light on total hours and still not a huge amount of variety. Sun Haven still took the top spot this month, but I’ve hit the point where I only have really tedious things to finish up in my solo game, so it’s less appealing than it had been. My World of Warcraft play felt like a more acceptable level for a game I’m paying to play every month, although I’m still finding myself a bit overwhelmed by how much is available to do, even if it’s not all necessary or even useful.

I’m still playing Tumblebugs pretty compulsively on the Steam Deck, and I’m pretty regularly reaching about the 75% mark of the game before losing all my lives. I might be skill-capped as far as playing this one using trackpads, but I’m not yet frustrated, so I keep plugging along.

Everything else this month was pretty much a dabble, and I’m still hoping to find the next game I want to sink a whole bunch of hours into, but I have no idea at this point what that might be.

Gaming Related Spending

I grabbed the Easy Going Games: Whitethorn Showcase from Humble for $12. There were a handful of duplicates, but in the end, it averaged out to about $2 per game I was keeping, so it seemed worth it. I bought the mid-tier of the Build Your Own Breakout Bundle on Fanatical for another $7, and then picked up a few wish list titles that were on sale on Steam. I also replaced my fading-fast keyboard this month, and when I add all that to my subscription spending, the total for May was $93. Not too bad, considering that included a hardware purchase.



It was another all audiobooks month, and honestly, I made some less than stellar choices for myself this month. Three of the titles I read were via Scribd, and four I borrowed digitally from my local library. While I didn’t actively dislike any of the books I listened to this month, several of them felt like they dragged on, and I found myself less motivated to keep listening than usual. Still, that leaves me ahead on my annual goal at 28/48 books completed this year.


The highlight of my TV watching this month came at the very end. I’d been (very impatiently) waiting for the end of the second season of Yellowjackets, and then spent a whole day curled up in bed watching all nine episodes. Despite the fact that it wasn’t as good as the first season, and had some outrageously difficult to watch scenes, I’m still a big fan of the show, and am not looking forward to having to wait a year or more for the next season.

The prior week, I rewatched the first season as well. I also finished up watching the most recent season of Next Level Chef and filled in the gaps with a season of Top Chef I hadn’t seen yet.

I didn’t watch a single movie during May, new-to-me or otherwise. I’m not sure why, but movies still feel like a commitment, even though I can sometimes sit and watch episode after episode of a show.


I’m glad that I went with my gut and didn’t double my stitching goal. Even though May still felt very productive. I ended the month having done just shy of 6,800 stitches, which is still a pretty respectable amount.

I did have a couple of things that might have contributed to less time spent stitching. The first is that my computer chair finally got to the point where it was too broken to comfortably use, so for the last half of the month, every time I wanted to change between using my computer and sitting at my craft desk, I had to move chairs around. I just recently moved the broken chair out, which makes chair switching a whole lot less irritating, and I’m hoping to have my computer chair replaced within the next couple of weeks.

The second was that I chose a couple of books mid-month that dragged on a bit. Sometimes, I think I sit down to stitch just so I have something to do with my hands while I listen, and during those less compelling books, I was far less likely to even start stitching on a given day, and quicker to set it aside.

This is the first month all year that I feel like I was myself again. Sure, I always want to do more, always think I could be doing more, but I feel pretty good about May and hopefully this will mark the end of what felt like an eternal slump.

Nerd Girl Goals – June 2023

Work is into summer hours now, and while I have plenty of other stuff that happens this time of year, I’m hoping I’ll start feeling a bit less pressure, and a bit less tired as a result. I’ve been kind of robot-walking through things the past few months, but I’m determined to find more space for recharging my batteries going forward.


World of Warcraft

I’m slowly increasing my World of Warcraft time, and although I think I’ve accepted that I’m never going to be doing as much as I would like to be – and am likely too far behind the curve right now for it to be fully successful – I’m feeling less overwhelmed with the prospect of keeping up with at least my weeklies and raid on my main character.

Which leaves the question of whether or not I even want additional goals here. Part of me wants to set yet another leveling goal, part of me wants to take some time and chase some old content goals, and yet another part of me says I should use this month to get my hoarding issues under control.

In the end, I decided the goal that would serve me best would be to just increase my total playtime during June, so I’m going to task myself with putting at least 25 hours in World of Warcraft this month.

Community Game-Along

I’m going to come right out and admit it – I did not prep for #RoguelikeJune nearly as well as I wanted to. Sure, I installed a bunch of things, but I am never really sure if a rogueli(k/t)e game is going to hit for me until I’ve done a run or two.

On the upside, when I tell Steam to make a dynamic category and fill it with roguelikes, I have over 200 games to choose from.

I’m hoping to play at least three wildly different roguelike games during the month of June and write about them. If I manage more, great. If I bounce off even more than that, it won’t surprise me.

Other Gaming

Sun Haven still has a lot of life left in it for co-op gaming. I plan on keeping up with the Humble Choice group review and playing and writing about something purchased in May.

But June is also bringing with it a new iteration of Steam Next Fest, and I do love me a demo, so I’d like to play at least a handful of demos and make a post about that as well.



I’d like to dedicate a bit of time this month to making lists for myself in an attempt to combat my current inability to make a decision when it comes to what to read and what to watch. I’m still not 100% sold on randomizing from said lists, but what I’m doing now isn’t working for me, so it’s time to try something new.

I also want to create a more manageable blogging flow so that I stop taking half a month off every month and then scrambling to cover everything I want to. While I normally set a “posts per month” goal, I’m going to amend that this month to at least two posts per week.


I’m still mostly content with my reading progress. Sure, I’d like to get back to more text reading rather than audio, because I’ve been dipping into and out of the same anthology of short stories for well over a month now. Still, four books is very doable, and keeps me from letting it fall completely by the wayside.


While I normally just set a goal of “new to me”, I have a specific show I want to watch in June, since I picked up AMC+ again on a deal for two month. The new season of Slasher is out, and I don’t want to it to slip my mind. I’d like to get in at least one new to me movie as well.


I’m right around the midpoint of the large project I’m working on, and I’m hoping to have it finished by the intended recipient’s birthday this year, so that gives me approximately 12 weeks to do the other half. That means I have to up my goals just a bit; I’ll need to complete just under 2000 stitches per week. Now, that’s doable, but will require me to maintain focus. I’m going to set my goal for June at 7,500 stitches.


  • Post at least twice a week during June.
  • Play at least 25 hours of World of Warcraft.
  • Play and write about at least three games for #RoguelikeJune.
  • Play and write about a game purchased in May 2023.
  • Participate in the group review of the June Humble Choice.
  • Play some demos and post about them during the June 2023 Steam Next Fest.
  • Spend at least 10 hours gaming on the Steam Deck in June.
  • Make up some lists of things to watch and things to read and actually use them.
  • Read / listen to any four books.
  • Watch Slasher (S5) on AMC+.
  • Watch at least one new-to-me movie.
  • Do at least 7,500 stitches on my current WiP.

Blaugust Reviews – Humble Choice May 2023 Edition

I’m filling in for the incomparable UnwiseOwl again this month on summing up our group review of the offerings in this month’s Humble Choice bundle. Every month, when the bundle releases, a bunch of us get together on the Blaugust Discord and hash out which games we’re most excited about and divvy up the titles for us each to look at during the month. Some folks just take a quick look, and some really go all in, but we want to give you a jumping off point to help you decide if this month’s bundle is going to be worth it for you.

You have a little more than a day from the time this post goes live to decide if you want to pause this one, or if you want to add some (or all) of these games to your library! If you have an active subscription, you have until 1pm Eastern time on May 30th to pause before the auto-charge goes through, but if you are already paused (or don’t subscribe), you have another week before the June bundle is released on June 6th.

Warhammer 40,000: Chaos Gate – Daemonhunters

Steam Store Price: $44.99

…if you’re a tactical game fan like me and don’t mind a little gratuitous grimdark then I think it’d be well worth your time to check it out too. Especially given that this is a Warhammer game with the traditional Warhammer tax in the price, so getting it as part of the Humble Monthly bundle is saving you a big wodge of the hefty $64.95 AU price tag.

Read UnwiseOwl’s full thoughts here: 40K: Chaos Gate – Daemonhunters

Spiritfarer: Farewell Edition

Steam Store Price: $29.99

Naithin is still working his way through Spiritfarer, and hasn’t quite gotten deep enough into the game yet for a full post, but still, he had some thoughts to share.

Spiritfarer is a charming indie game with a hand-drawn art style that is nonetheless beautifully animated. It is a game that explores the themes of death and passing on, putting you in the role of a replacement-Charon, ushering the deceased onto the next stage of their journey while taking care of their needs in the present to prepare them for it.

It has elements reminiscent of a farming-game like Stardew Valley, albeit set upon the back of your upgradeable ship. You’ll explore different conditions at sea and atop a myriad of islands. But none of this is overly demanding or punishing. The gameplay is rather relaxed, and simply a vehicle through which you come to know your charges, before ultimately needing to let them go.

For the most part, these charges appear to be family and friends. So in my several hours of play- I began to wonder… Was I truly taking Charon’s role in assisting these folk…? Or was there perhaps something more to it, and I was being prepared? I don’t yet know. But if a narrative that might pull at your heartstrings is something up your alley, this bundle, and game, may well be worth your while.


Want another take on this one?

Spiritfarer is one of those games that I liked more and less than I expected at the same time. As a management game, it was … ok, I guess. The pacing was weird and frustrating. However, thematically and as a series of character studies, it was brilliant and heart-wrenching, and so much more powerful than I was anticipating.

Game Over – Spiritfarer

Bendy and the Dark Revival

Steam Store Price: $29.99

Bendy and the Dark Revival, however… it’s a valiant effort in the complex and thankless work of assembling video game assets together and publishing them, but it doesn’t leave much of a lasting impression other than: “It was okay.”

Read UltraViolet’s full thoughts here: Bendy and the Dark Revival

Operation: Tango

Steam Store Price: $19.99

Having played through the first couple of missions, this is definitely a game I would go back to. It’s a nice pick-up for a Humble Choice offering, but it’s really only going to have value for someone who has someone to play with, as there is no matchmaking of any type in the game. It’s been discounted to below $10 on various platforms, so there’s maybe not enough value here to pick up the bundle solely for this title, but if you’re grabbing the bundle anyway, and you have a willing friend to play with, you’ll likely get a few hours of fun out of it.

Read my full thoughts here: Quick Look – Operation Tango (Humble Choice – May 2023)

Windjammers 2

Steam Store Price: $19.99

I just really wish this game was more accessible. Maybe it is easier for players who regularly play games like this.

If I wanted to get really good at the game, I would now go and read through all of [the guides for this game]. However, I don’t. It’s a fun little game but I don’t think it’s a game that I want to sink in hour after hour.

Read Paeroka’s full thoughts here: Windjammers 2 – Humble Choice Game May 2023

Builder Simulator

Steam Store Price: $19.99

An interesting concept that ultimately leaves me disappointed. I would like a lot more details, more freedom when it comes to designing and building houses, and less tedious work.

Read StalkingVengeance’s full thoughts here: The Videogame Corner: Builder Simulator

Behind the Frame: The Finest Scenery

Steam Store Price: $12.99

Overall, though, Behind The Frame: The Finest Scenery is a pretty short yet beautiful puzzle game that you may wanna pick up during this month’s Humble Choice. The story and animations are lovely; you can even pet the cat, which is pretty great – frankly, it’s a nice little title to experience at least once and it lends itself very well to shorter sessions!

Read Magi’s full thoughts here: Indietail – Behind the Frame: The Finest Scenery


Want another take on this one?

Everything about this game is beautiful aesthetically. The animation is movie-quality, the sound design is immersive, and it leads you through a heartwarming little story. However, if you prioritize gameplay, you may find yourself disappointed. This is definitely a game that wants to take you on a journey – the puzzle aspects almost feel like an afterthought.

Game Over – Behind the Frame: The Finest Scenery (#JustOnePercent 74/100)

The Invisible Hand

Steam Store Price: $12.99

I am really bad with it as I am always too impatient, selling or buying too fast instead of waiting for the perfect opportunity. Oh well. It is still a good game and there aren’t many others with a similar topic…

Read Paeroka’s full thoughts here: The Invisible Hand – Humble Choice Game May 2023


Want another take on this one?

I managed to work my way through two promotions, but I can’t say at any point I was having fun. I couldn’t even let myself root for the playable character (who you know almost nothing about) because everything about the job and the company and even your friend who got your foot in the door felt profoundly icky. Which I think was the point, so good on you Power Struggle Games. I may not have liked anything I was feeling while playing, but The Invisible Hand definitely made me feel things.

Quick Look – The Invisible Hand (#JustOnePercent 33/100)

In conclusion:

Like most Humble Choice bundles, they’re almost always worth picking up if you’re interested in three or more titles. If you only want a single game from this bundle, and that game is Warhammer 40,000: Chaos Gate – Daemonhunters, then you’re getting your money’s worth from this bundle. If you’re even vaguely interested in any of the other titles, that’s a bonus.

Spiritfarer is a good pickup but it’s been bundled before and on some pretty deep discounts, so if this is a game you’ve been interested in, it’s probably already in your library, so it’s tough to say that this one can carry the bundle on its own. If you’re very specifically interested in Bendy and the Dark Revival, Operation Tango, or Windjammers 2, and anything else looks good to you, it’s probably worth it.

If you’re only interested in Behind the Frame – The Finest Scenery or The Invisible Hand, you can probably find a better deal on those titles individually. Builder Simulator is probably the biggest dud in this month’s offering, and will probably only appeal to the gamer who gobbles up every simulation game they come across.

Self-Reflection Sunday: You Gotta Spend Time to Make Time

So, my time management is currently non-existant.

For reference, I started this post back on May 5, fully intending to finish it up and post it on on Sunday, May 7th. Which, as I’m sure you guessed, didn’t happen. Nor did I finish it in time for the following Sunday, or the Sunday afterwards.

Now, I’m still managing most of the things that I classify as “must dos” in my life. We’re all fed, and medicated, and wearing clean clothes every day. The bills are paid & while I cannot say that my house is exactly clean, it’s at least not messier than usual. I’m flying through my to-do lists at work. By most metrics, I’m doing okay, maybe even better than okay.

But what I’ve been less successful at is finding space in my life for things that bring me joy. I’m tired, I’ll say. I can do it tomorrow. But tomorrow comes and goes and I make excuses for myself instead of making space for the things that rejuvenate me.

If it’s true that sometimes, you need to spend money to make money – and it is – then it also stands to reason that sometimes, you need to spend time to make time. Now, I’m not 100% sure this is the answer here, but it’s the next thing I want to try.

I’ve tried being completely plan-less when it comes to my leisure activities, and I’ve tried being super-structured. Neither has really done the trick for me. While I have (mostly) accepted that some days need to be more rest-focused, it’s the in-between days that frustrate me the most. When I’m not up to the things I’d most like to be doing, but I could be doing something.

I’m hoping that taking a bit of time to make myself some “low-energy” lists will help. When I feel faded, my ability to make even completely unimportant decisions doesn’t work as well as it should, and I will frequently spend hours trying to decide on a movie, book, or low-pressure game that I can play on my Steam Deck in bed. I’m hoping if I make a list of things I am interested in but don’t require me to be fully present to engage with them, I can just work my way through that list, and funnel a bit of relaxation in with my rest.

Quick Look – Operation Tango (Humble Choice – May 2023)

Although I am – for the most part – a single player game kind of person, I will admit that I have a bit of a soft spot for two player co-op where communication is key. Operation Tango was a game already on my radar, but my typical puzzle-gaming co-op partner and I were unable to get anything scheduled, so I convinced my (somewhat reluctant husband to play through the first couple of missions with me. According to IsThereAnyDeal, this is the first time Operation Tango has appeared in a bundle, and it retails for $19.99.

I feel like I need to start with the one thing that Operation Tango does better than a lot of two-player, co-op required games. It does not require both players to purchase the game in order to play. As long as one player owns the game, they can direct their friend to install the free Friend Pass, and invite them to a game. Achievements are not available for players using the friend pass instead of the full game, and the person who owns the game needs to create the session, but otherwise, it allows the second player to engage fully with the content.

You’ll need to decide which of your team is going to play as the agent, and which as the hacker. I left the choice up to my husband, and he picked agent, and I was relieved. I expected that meant that I was going to be the one primarily working my way through databases and checking out security cameras, while he dealt with the actual threats, but there are definitely some places where even the hacker needs to be fast on their feet. Each mission starts with a little scrap of story, and then you’re each dumped into your side of the mission and you need to start figuring things out. You work your way through a sequence of objectives, and hopefully don’t get each other killed.

However, if you do, the penalty for death is almost nothing. You’re brought back to the precise place that you failed (or as close as you can be without getting caught in a failure loop), and any puzzles you’ve already completed stay that way. I feel like this cuts way down on the potential for one or both players to get frustrated, and I really appreciated this design decision.

I also liked that a lot of the information is randomized – you can’t just memorize the answers and speedrun your way through the game. If I was too slow in entering a code, it would always be different the next time. Which maybe drove my husband a little crazy, as he had to keep dodging lasers in order to access the terminal and read me the code, but it definitely adds replay value, beyond that of playing from the opposite perspective.

There are seven scripted missions, and an additional challenge mode, so if you’re satisfied with playing only a single role, you could be done with this game in half a dozen hours. The puzzles are also a bit on the simple side from a “figuring things out” perspective, so dedicated puzzle gamers might feel like the game is too easy. I personally don’t consider either of these things to be a negative – in fact, this would be a pretty good introductory experience to this type of game for someone who doesn’t have a lot of puzzle game experience.

Having played through the first couple of missions, this is definitely a game I would go back to. It’s a nice pick-up for a Humble Choice offering, but it’s really only going to have value for someone who has someone to play with, as there is no matchmaking of any type in the game. It’s been discounted to below $10 on various platforms, so there’s maybe not enough value here to pick up the bundle solely for this title, but if you’re grabbing the bundle anyway, and you have a willing friend to play with, you’ll likely get a few hours of fun out of it.

Quick Look – Owlboy (#Maytroidvania)

I had such high hopes for Owlboy. I didn’t necessarily think I would finish the game, mind you, but I thought I’d get further than I did. I’m trying to gently ease myself into more platforming games, but the big appeal for me with this title was that I expected to not have to worry about the persnickety jumping parts. I was playing a character with wings. Although I also sometimes have problems with flight in games, Owlboy is 2D, so I was sure I could handle it.

I did struggle a bit with the combination of flying and shooting at stuff, but I worked my way through the first dungeon area without too much trouble. However, upon exiting, I was greeted by a mechanic I hadn’t even considered – a segment of the game where you were expected to be stealthy.

But flying around avoiding the lights wasn’t too bad! In fact, for almost the first 90 minutes of the game, it really felt like something within my capacity. Until, in the Owl Temple, I encountered gnomes.

If you guessed it was another stealthy bit, well, you’d be spot on. Gnomes have terrible eyesight (meaning they only see a tiny circle of space around their bodies), but really excellent hearing. What that means from a gameplay perspective is you cannot fly. They will run as fast as their little gnome legs can carry them to the sound of flapping wings.

And did I mention that touching any of those vision orbs lead to being one-shot killed? No? Well that’s exactly what happens. And since Owlboy is a checkpoint-based save game, rather than a save anywhere game, I got very frustrated very quickly.

Of my just-shy-of-two-hour playtime, I’d say probably a quarter of that was spent trying to get through the god-awful gnome area. I have no idea if I was ever even close to escape. I’d figured out a good chunk of the path, but it felt like sometimes, when I just barely tapped the button to jump, the game registered it as a longer press and there were my wings, and then I was gnome-food.

Really, it’s too bad, because I was having a lot of fun with it up until that point. Maybe there was something I missed that would have made it easier? I don’t know, but I tried long enough to make me want to shelf the whole game. Chances are this wouldn’t be the last area with this kind of frustrating (at least for me) gameplay.

Quick Look – Dungeons & Jewels

A couple of months ago, I revisited both 10,000,000 and You Must Build a Boat and I remembered how much I like a good old fashioned match-3 game with a little something extra. I spotted the recently released Dungeons & Jewels during Puzzle Fest last month, and although the discount wasn’t much, I don’t mind throwing a five at this type of game every now and again.

If you don’t care for match-3 gameplay, there’s nothing here that’s going to change your mind. It’s a dungeon crawl where you need to match a certain color in order to damage your enemy. In the screenshot above, you need to match any 3 (or more) white tiles to beat up that adorable little rat. Each time you make a match in the default game mode, your enemy will move one step closer. When it reaches you, you’ll take a hit of damage. Lose all your health, and it’s game over, so it’s important to get the right matches fairly quickly.

When you reach an enemy with multiple hearts over their head, you’ll need to make those color matches one right after another. If you can set it up so they cascade in the same turn, great, but back-to-back is good enough. The deeper you get into the dungeon, the more complex the matches needed becomes.

At the end of each floor, you’ll find a treasure chest with something inside that changes the game play a little bit. You’ll also unlock abilities that can be chosen at the start of a new run to suit your personal play style. I’ve been a huge fan of the club since I unlocked it – matching club tiles (which appear regularly throughout the run) will stun all enemies on screen for one turn.

There are four classes to choose from. The warrior is the easy turn-based option, where the skeleton is more challenging. If you prefer your matching to require speed, the rogue and the revenant change the base gameplay so that the enemies move based on time, not after you take a turn. A successful run shouldn’t last more than 20-30 minutes, and the variety of unlocks and gear drops makes for a reasonable amount of replay value.

Dungeons & Jewels is a pretty serviceable attempt to combine match-3 gameplay with roguelike randomness, and I enjoyed my time with it quite a bit. Although some might feel like it’s a little bit barebones, it’s got solid gameplay and is fairly impressive for a freshman effort. Currently, the developer plans to release more content in the form a free DLC, which is pretty generous, considering the price.

In Review – April 2023

  • Make at least 8 blog posts during April.
  • Level at least one more character to 70 in World of Warcraft.
  • Participate in #PlatforMonth
  • Play and write about one title purchased in March 2023.
  • Participate in the group review of the April 2023 Humble Choice.
  • Read or listen to at least four books.

Every single one of my goals this month should have been an easy win, and I still didn’t get through them all. Which is to say, it’s hard sometimes to guess where your whims are going to take you.


This month wasn’t so much about the drop in gaming hours (although they’re a bit lower than usual), but in the gaming variety. Three of those games were entirely on the Steam Deck (LIMBO, Here Comes Niko! and Tumblebugs), but even the allure of gaming in bed didn’t motivate me much during April. Doubling up on Sun Haven as both my co-op and main solo game of the month meant it blew away all the competition for time spent playing. Clearly, I’m a cozy phase.

I’m not at all surprised I’m in a cozy phase.

I didn’t get back to either of March’s Deck games-in-progress (Potion Permit and Aurora Bound Deluxe), and I wasn’t really terribly excited to start much new this month.

World of Warcraft

I really feel like I wasted my sub this month. I managed to log on for one whole and one partial raid, and then was scrambling to finish up my monthly Trading Post activities just under the wire. The only other times I logged in all month long was for a few minutes here and there to do crafting orders for guildies. I was uninterested in the Forbidden Reach, I didn’t want to do any leveling or gearing or world quests or anything the whole month. I even missed the Darkmoon Faire, and I never miss the Darkmoon Faire if I have an active sub.

I’m not sure yet if this is end-of-tier slump, or if I’m getting ready to take another break from the game.

Gaming-Related Spending

Not being terribly interested in playing games certainly didn’t stop me from buying games this month. I picked up two newish releases in Moviehouse and Homestead Arcana, and I was gifted a copy of Dredge, which I had been really excited about but didn’t buy myself. Everything else was either bundles from Fanatical, or impulse purchases (mostly from the just-about-to-end Steam Puzzlefest sale).

Of course, instead of playing one of the many new-to-me games I bought, instead I immediately installed Tumblebugs, a game I’ve played to death in the past on other platforms, and have been using that to wind down at night on the Steam Deck. At least I’m playing something from my new purchases?

In total, including my Humble Choice and World of Warcraft subscriptions, my gaming-related spending for April 2023 was $111.00. Including the games I immediately activated from Humble Choice, I added 28 new games to my already too-large library.



I finished 8 books – all of them audio – during April. In fact, because I was on a hefty reading kick at the end of March as well, I managed to critically limit my Scribd account before it came up for renewal in April. As much as I love Scribd for what it does offer, I really wish it were a little more transparent about how the limits work. As it turned out, I had to put on series on hold due to the last book going unavailable, and as soon I as I listened to the first title from another, the rest of those books went unavailable as well.

It was at this point that I remembered that I had a library card and could get audiobooks that way as well, so I finished out my month with a couple of library titles. I have holds on a handful of others, so maybe I will do a better job alternating between services in the future. Maybe.


I also remembered this month that I do – on occasion – enjoy the company of the TV. So in a month that I skipped over this particular goal, I managed to watch one new-to-me movie, in Ratatouille, and two new-to-me seasons or series. I’m not counting the current season of Next Level Chef since it’s still being aired on network TV so I haven’t watched all the episodes, but I did watch the entirety of season 21 of Hell’s Kitchen and all six episodes of Wreck, which is a comedic horror series that originally aired on BBC. I wasn’t sure how I was going to feel about the whole dark humor / slasher mashup, but it really worked for me and I binged the entire series in one night.


By far, the biggest turnaround for me this month was in the category of crafts. After almost two full months of not picking up a needle, I finally – very belatedly – figured out that the probably was not with stitching overall, but with the project I had been working on. Once I decided to pull it off the frame and pull something else from my stack of works-in-progress, it seemed like I was at my craft desk every time I could sneak a few minutes.

All in all, during April, I completed over 10,000 stitches, taking this project from 8% completion to 33% completion. Obviously, I still have a ways to go, but I haven’t really slowed down any, so I expect that I’ll continue to plug along at it without difficulty.

For anyone interested in the results of the sit down I had with myself earlier in the month, these were the conclusions I came to for what I’d like to work on.

First is that I’m giving myself the month of May to decide if I need an MMO break, or if it was just end-of-season slump. I don’t even mind paying primarily to raid-log if that’s the part of the game that is giving me joy, but I barely even did that this month. So, we’ll see what my play time looks like in May and how I’m feeling about it, and make a decision before my early June subscription renewal.

Second is that I would really like to cut back on how much time I spend mindlessly scrolling the internet, or taking forever to choose my next book / movie / tv show / game. The time that feels wasted as soon as it’s gone. I still have plenty of time to do just about everything I want to, and I’m starting to get closer to having my energy managed, but I am still losing a lot of time to figuring out what I want to and/or can do at any given moment. This might mean even more planning and lists, sure, but at least those things feel constructive when I’m doing them.

Nerd Girl Goals – May 2023

So, I’ve tried being kind and generous with myself, and you know what? It’s not working. I mean, it’s not like I don’t know that I feel more secure and accomplish more when I have a lot of structure rather than when I’m left to my own devices.

Although April definitely took me on some unexpected tangents, I am still not feeling great about where I’m at with all things nerdy, so it’s time to buckle down and see if I function better with more focused goals, or if it’s indeed time to reevaluate what activities I want to – and am willing to – prioritize.


World of Warcraft

On May 2, we’ll see the beginning of the second raid tier of Dragonflight, and while I would normally be completely jazzed, I’m instead cautiously interested. Patch 10.0.7 was a big flop for me – instead of being excited about the new content, I found myself unwilling to even keep plugging away at the old content. This past month saw me putting the least hours into World of Warcraft since I reactivated my subscription last fall.

I am looking forward to the new story content, so completing as much of that as time-gating will allow is on my to do list for this month. That said, I may be about ready to step away from MMO’s for a bit again, and how I feel about the new patch will definitely factor into that decision.

Community Game Along

This may be an oversimplification because we’re still outside of my gaming comfort zone, but #MetroidvaniaMay kind of feels like an extension of #PlatforMonth. I realize that metroidvanias are a mostly – but not entirely – a subset of platformers, but since I’m not overly familiar with what exactly makes a game a metroidvania, I’m trusting Steam tags and store page descriptions.

Although I may have lost my mind with these picks, I’ve chosen Owlboy (a flying metroidvania) and Song of the Deep (an underwater metroidvania), in hopes of not spending the month impaling myself on spikes when I inevitably miss a simple jump.

Other Gaming

As far as co-op gaming is concerned, I expect it’s going to continue to be Sun Haven throughout the entirety of May. We’re making solid storyline progress, but we have set the slider to 30 minute days, so we get through about an in-game week per play session. If we continue at this pace, we won’t be wrapping up our first year for several months.

I took last month off from this, but I want to get in the habit of writing about at least one game purchased the prior month, as well as continuing with the Blaugust Reviews Humble Choice project.

Other Nerdstuff


I am currently super far ahead of my annual reading goal, but I’m going to stick with the four book goal since I sometimes go through long periods where I don’t touch a book. I’d rather far overshoot my annual goal than miss it.


I’ve also found a renewed interest in the television, so I’m going to add back the new to me movie and new to me season, series or mini-series goal for May.


But the most exciting thing for me, is that stitching is back in rotation. After packing up the project I wasn’t enjoying, I’ve found a new vigor for making tiny x’s. I’ve pulled out a WIP that was supposed to be a birthday gift for last year, and am making excellent progress. That said, it’s still a pretty damn big project, with a lot of work still to do.

However, I also need a win, so I’m going to set what is only a moderately high goal of 5000 stitches done during May, which averages out to about 250 stitches a day, five days per week.

…I had considered doubling that, but this will allow me to maybe check off another handful of goals this month instead of just the one.


  • Make at least 8 blog posts during May.
  • Complete the 10.1 story content in World of Warcraft.
  • Play and write about at least one game for #MetroidvaniaMay.
  • Play and write about one title purchased in April 2023.
  • Participate in the group review of the May Humble Choice.
  • Spend at least 10 hours gaming on the Steam Deck in May.
  • Read / listen to at least four books.
  • Watch at least one new-to-me movie.
  • Watch at least one new-to-me series, mini-series or season.
  • Do 5000 stitches during the month of May.

Quick Look – LIMBO (#PlatforMonth)

Here I am, sneaking in my thoughts on LIMBO on the next-to-the-last day of the month, when I actually played the game on the very first day. I kept thinking I would go back to it, and play some more. I didn’t quit because I was frustrated (thanks to keeping a walkthrough open on my phone while I played) but clearly, I also didn’t find the game compelling enough to return to.

Maybe it’s just that as I get older, it gets harder for me to get invested in games outside of my preferred genres. I’m still a huge fan of pure puzzle games, and I keep trying to convince myself that puzzle-platformers are adjacent enough I should be able to play and enjoy them. I think the key difference – for me – is that puzzle games almost always give you all the information you need about how the game works, even the ones which keep adding mechanics to increase the difficulty as you go. Puzzle platformers often rely on the mechanic of having to figure out how the game works as part of the puzzle part. You have to fail in order learn, and I’m not a big fan of forced failure.

I did think the art style was amazing; it’s truly impressive what can be done with a grayscale color palette. Otherwise, I was pretty lukewarm on the whole experience. I gave the game a little less than an hour, and in that time I made it just shy of the 1/4 mark. I just … I wasn’t having fun. The puzzley bits I managed to figure out myself felt super obvious and easy, and the ones I needed to consult a walkthrough for felt, in comparison, to be needlessly obscure.

And sometimes, games just don’t hit for me. This is a well-loved game, and I’m certainly not going to try to say that the more than 25,000 people who gave it a good review on Steam are wrong. It just wasn’t the right game for me at this point in time. Will I try again? I may. There was enough that intrigued me that I might blitz through the entirety of the game when I’m in a different state of mind.