How the heck is it already September? I cannot be the only one for whom times has gotten very weird. The days are long, but the weeks fly by. The months are either eternal or over in a flash with nothing in between. I find myself using the phrase “just the other day” and then describing things that happened weeks or months ago.
As someone who is deeply connected with the ideas of planning and scheduling and then actually adhering to those things, the ever-moving goal posts in both my personal life and the world at large are giving me some epic fatigue. I don’t know when I am or what I’m supposed to be doing and it’s really starting to wear me down.
In response to all the things I have no control over, I am very likely to over-schedule my leisure time, which will either prove immensely satisfying as I check things off my list, or lead to a nasty case of burnout.
Most likely, with nothing in between.
World of Warcraft
I definitely spent more energy over the last month or so debating whether or not to re-up my subscription than the cost of the subscription warrants. You see, for the past few expansions – almost as long as the option has been available to me – I have “paid” for my game time with in-game gold instead of my credit card, and found it very satisfying to do so. However, my nearly non-existent interest in WoW for anything other than our bi-weekly raid nights means I’m not making much in the way of gold, and will need to spend actual real life money in order to continue on.
Ok, typing it out sounds ridiculous. It’s $15 a month, which might have been a significant amount of money during some of our leaner years. However, this is somehow not one of our leaner years, and the fact that we’re still not going out to do things means we have ample space in our somewhat generous entertainment budget. So I can certainly afford the sub cost, I just wanted to make sure I was feeling good about this decision.
The bottom line is this. I am enjoying our team’s raid nights. While that should be enough in and of itself, the things that really pushed me over into spending the money (and gladly!) was the tragedy of losing two members of the WoW community in the past week. Neither was anyone I had any personal connection to, but I definitely have personal connections to people who were close to both @Epic_Insanity and @Rades. I’m not going to let my cheapskate tendencies keep me from spending time with people who bring joy to my life.
I frequently need to look up what exactly constitutes a given genre in order to prepare for a new month’s theme, and Shoot ‘Em Ups (or shmups, as they are sometimes abbreviated) was no exception. Although I’ve managed to accumulate more than a handful of games in my Steam library that have the tag, this is really not my genre. So I’ve decided that I’m going to go as old school as I comfortably can, and dive into Atari Vault this month. There’s bound be a shoot ’em up classic or two hiding in there, and I think it’ll make for an interesting hit of nostalgia. Probably.
Subscription Gaming – XBox GamePass for PC
I’ve done that weird thing that never seems to work well with a monthly structure – I renewed my GamePass subscription mid-month in anticipation of the release of Psychonauts 2 on August 24th. While I anticipate hitting my satisfaction threshold with that title sometime before my renewal date, I think I’m going to keep my subscription for another month, as there’s still more than a few titles of interest I have not yet had a chance to try out. I don’t think there’s anything left I’d call top tier must plays, but since I feel like I got a ton of value out of the mid-August to mid-September subscription, I’m willing to cut myself a little slack on the next one.
Although it is by no means guaranteed, I am anticipating that my weekly co-op Stardew Valley game will have wrapped up before September does, and we’ve already decided the next game we’re planning to dive into together is Factorio. I bought this one ages ago, loaded it up, and played for approximately 10 minutes before getting completely overwhelmed. I always intended to give it another go, but … well, it’s not the first game I bought and then forgot I owned.
I’ve actually done very little co-op gaming outside of MMOs over the years, and while it’s also been just a good time and a nice way to make sure we hang out once a week, I’m surprised at how much I’m enjoying actual cooperative gameplay.
I still have my list of games I’ve pulled to the front of my library that I want to give at least an hour to, which has gone basically untouched for two months now, as well as some more recent purchases I’d like to dive into. Still, I’m most likely to prioritize the games of interest on GamePass since my personal library isn’t going anywhere. Any of these titles could be on the table for this month, but clearly, the theme here is that I want to build something.
This has not really been a great year as far as reading is concerned, so because I thought I was back into it, I am even further behind than if I hadn’t upped my goal. Ooops. I’m also seriously behind on The Pike Cast, and I’ve been adding a bunch of audiobooks to my library, so I feel like things will pick up as soon as I’m able to make some progress towards having a quiet space again. In the meantime, I’d like to read through something this month, but I have no idea what just yet.
I’ve also signed up and bought the materials to do a Halloween sampler-style Stitch-A-Long, so I’d like to finish up the last bits of the project I have in progress to free up my frame for that when the pattern parts start dropping mid-month.
Honestly, as much as I liked working through multiple games and all the Blaugust shenanigans last month, I’m looking forward to some diversity in my leisure time in September.