Nerd Girl Goals – April 2021

GAMING

Play to Satisfaction

For me, saying “Play to Satisfaction” gives me explicit permission to drop a game that’s not working for me, but also to grind away for nerd points if I’m really loving something. I’m trying to make it a policy for myself that I will always play to satisfaction – no more, no less.

Subscription MMO – World of Warcraft (Retail)

I’m actually starting to think that this might be the month I let my sub lapse, but I haven’t decided anything as of yet, and I’m still sitting on a couple of tokens, so even if I’m only playing for a dozen or so hours a month, it’s not actually costing me anything. I really do love the folks in my guild, but it’s really been a struggle to log on, even if once I do, I enjoy myself. With Denathrius down on normal, I don’t really have any goals until the next major content patch, and I’m just not terribly interested in alts at this point in time.

Community Game-Along – #CapcoMonth

I’ve been collecting the older Resident Evil titles for quite awhile, but I’ve never had the proper motivation to dive into them. It did take me an unreasonably long time to decide where to start, since I worried that going too far back would sour me on the series, and I wasn’t particularly keen on buying any of the remasters when I have a bunch of titles waiting in my library. I am hoping that Resident Evil 4 will be a good entry point for the series.

Of course, I have back-ups. Firstly, I am sitting on a copy of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy that I was gifted during the last Steam Winter Sale that I haven’t so much as installed, and if all else fails, I’m going to go back and slaughter some zombies in Dead Rising, despite the fact that I’ve already completed it once.

Subscription Gaming – XBox Gamepass for PC

I realize it has been several months that I’ve been saying I’m going to re-up my sub to this, and several months in which I just haven’t. This is good, because it means I’m playing stuff I already own, but there are definitely some games on there that I’m interested in, just not quite interested enough in to buy them.

However, somehow I missed that the Dark Pictures Anthology: Man of Medan was added, and that’s one I’m really interested in, but it’s super-short, and I’m not planning to play co-op, so I’m not sure that there’d be any reason to go through it more than once. Maybe this will be the month I actually go through with it, especially since I’m still not playing a lot of WoW and reaching a plateau period in Stardew Valley.

Other Gaming

Next up on the Switch, I’m hoping to get into The Caligula Effect: Overdose, although my spotty history with JRPGs in general makes this a big ol’ maybe as far as liking it. One of the major complaints that I’ve seen is that combat is too simplistic, so it might, in fact, be perfect for me.

Although its release date of April 30th makes Pokemon Snap not entirely eligible for my April goals, I am strongly leaning towards pre-ordering it. I’m not familiar enough with Nintendo in general to know how set in stone their release dates tend to be, but I am fairly certain this is a game I’d like to have day one.

I’ve also been toying with the idea of doing some sort of series where I deep dive into my library, but I have yet to work out all the details. I’ve been struggling with getting myself back on track in most areas of my life, so I’m not 100% sure this is the right time for a blog project, but it’s definitely something I want to brainstorm on more.

I fully intend to reach level 100 in Cook, Serve, Delicious 2!! before month’s end, and at that point, I’ll re-asses my desire to chase gold medals all around.

Lastly, I plan to continue with my co-op playthrough of Stardew Valley, in which we strive to explore all the new content that came with the 1.5 update, as well as continuing my current play through and maybe trying out a different farm layout / spouse combination.

In Review – March 2021

I really want to say “Where did March go exactly?” but I know the answer to that. I’ve spend a not insignificant portion of my March gaming time revisiting Stardew Valley, and if we’re being honest, that was not somewhere I saw myself going at the beginning of the month.

It’s not because I don’t like the game – I played for over 100 hours back when it released in 2016. I just had assumed I was basically done with it. However, a friend approached me about starting up a co-op game after the 1.5 patch released, and we just finally got around to scheduling it. I had intended to for it be something I only played with him, a couple nights a week, but after our second session, I started up my own save file, and blew through two years of farming in a couple of weeks.

I originally played through twice – once to choose each major story point route, but I didn’t come anywhere close to getting all the achievements (mostly because I am bad at video games inside of video games, and knowing that I wasn’t going to finish those achievements kind of took the wind out of my sails). I wasn’t surprised by how much I had forgotten, rather, but by how much I remembered. I don’t know how much longer I’ll continue on this particular play through, despite having chosen the best spouse in the game, but I’ve already found myself thinking about trying out the different farm maps and going through it again, and possibly again after that.

I’m not surprised that Stardew Valley has seen the kind of popularity and longetivity that it has, but I wasn’t expecting to enjoy it so much myself all over again.


My return to farming life slowed down my quest to become the Employee of the Decade and get #GoingForGold in Cook, Serve, Delicious 2! – however, shortly after my last post on the topic, that had started to slow down anyway because OH MY GOD it gets hard. I’ve progressed past level 80 out of the 100 required to unlock all the Chef For Hire levels, and at this point, I’m impressed when I manage to get through a level with a silver medal. There’s been a few that I didn’t even pass on the first playthrough.

I’m not doubting that getting gold medals on every level is possible, but I am seriously starting to doubt that I’m going to be able to do it. I still plan to hit level 100 without touching the custom restaurant, and since you do get experience from replaying levels, that’s not unreasonable. I took a break of a couple weeks, but I’ve started up again, and I plan to at least finish leveling and completing every shift.


I also finished the main story in Digimon Story Cyber Sleuth during March. I dabbled in the Hacker’s Memory DLC, but I wasn’t enjoying it nearly as much, and ended up setting it aside for now. I don’t have a completely accurate play time for it, since I accidentally left the game running one night, but I think I probably spent about forty hours with it, as well as a half dozen or so with the DLC.

Although my Switch library will never come close to my PC game library, it’s slowly growing, and I’m really enjoying having a handheld console. Now that I have it, I’m kind of annoyed with myself for debating the purchase for as long as I did.


Although I wouldn’t go so far as to say that I’m done with World of Warcraft until another major content patch, my play time is way down from what it was the past few months. I’ve reached max current renown on my main, my primary alt is geared enough for our alt raids, and pushing mythic keys is absolutely not a thing I wish to pursue. Currently, I am mostly logging in to raid, to farm materials for raid consumables, and to occasionally poke at some old content for achievements and transmog. Normally, when my play time dips this precipitously, I unsub for awhile, but since I’m still enjoying the content I am doing, and there’s not really another MMO calling my name at the moment, I expect I’ll keep on with it for awhile yet.

Our small super-casual guild just took down Sire Denathrius on normal this past raid night, so I do, to some extent, feel like I’m done with Shadowlands 9.0.


I wasn’t terribly successful with my other plans for the month. As I expected, even though I had a few games in my library to play around with, #WayForwardMarch just wasn’t my thing. I didn’t do all that much better with #MaybeInMarch – I spent a little under an hour with Bastion, and as much as I like the aesthetic of the game, I found the game play a bit frustrating. I considered restarting the game in No Sweat Mode, but as I wasn’t really enjoying it, I didn’t think giving myself unlimited deaths was going to do much to change that.

Sometimes, success looks like figuring out that something doesn’t work for you, and moving on to something that does.

Nerd Girl Goals – March 2021 (#WayForwardMarch)

GAMING

Play to Satisfaction

For me, saying “Play to Satisfaction” gives me explicit permission to drop a game that’s not working for me, but also to grind away for nerd points if I’m really loving something. I’m trying to make it a policy for myself that I will always play to satisfaction – no more, no less.

Subscription MMO – World of Warcraft (Retail)

Sure, we might see 9.0.5 before the month is over, but I’m going in to March with the attitude that it’s ok if I basically want to raid log for the month. While I’m not quite ready to throw in the towel, I’ve been struggling the find the fun for a bit, and in order to get back to a place where I’m enjoying most of my playtime, I need to break the habit of doing chores for very little reward. It’s been formally announced now that unlocking Shadowlands flying on one character will unlock it for the entire account, so I plan to keep up with Krikket’s renown, and stop worrying so much about my other characters.

I’m not really all that great at playing MMOs casually, but I’d like to give it a whirl for a little bit.

Community Game-Along – #WayForwardMarch

I had every intention of skipping this month – I’m not at all familiar with WayForward Games, and a quick glance didn’t show me anything I was overly interested in. However, I did a search through my Steam library, and realized that I picked up a copy of Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse somewhere, and I decided I’d at least put an hour or two into it. Plenty of games have surprised me in the past; maybe this one will as well!

Subscription Game Service – XBox GamePass for PC

I probably won’t get around to re-subbing and playing The Medium again this month, but I figure if I keep carrying the goal forward until I do get around to it, at least I won’t forget! However, since the March Humble Choice is going to feature Control as one of its headliners, I’ll end up playing my own copy of that one – I just can’t even begin to guess when.

Other Games

I think that leaves me with the most potential time for this category of any month in recent memory, and in typical fashion, I expect I’m going to over-schedule and under-deliver. The weather is starting to break here, and there’s quite a bit of real life stuff I’ve put off waiting for the snow to melt away, so I may not have quite as much time as I think I will for gaming.

I briefly alluded to this is my February In Review post, but I’ve started a not-so-small challenge project. I’m going to try to get gold medals on all the Chef-for-Hire levels on Cook, Serve, Delicious! 2. I had assumed there would be an achievement for this, but I checked it out and … there isn’t. There is, however, an achievement for getting gold on all levels on a single restaurant, and then one for 6 and 15 different ones, so I’ll have some checkpoints built in.

I had also fully intended to participate in #LoveYourBacklog month last month, but I never did get around to it. However, I’d like to jump into #MaybeInMarch and re-install Bastion, which has been in my Steam library since December of 2011. I’ve started it a couple of time, but I don’t feel like I’ve ever given it a fair shake. It’s a fairly short game – HowLongToBeat says it takes about 6 hours to finish the main story, so it’s not like it’s a huge undertaking. I’ve heard nothing but good things about this game; I’m not sure why it hasn’t managed to hold my attention.

I expect I’ll be able to finish up the main story of Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth this month as well. I mostly play for a bit before bed each night, but I have also played a little in docked mode on the living room TV. I actually think I like handheld mode better! I’ve already finished the first 15 chapters, and even if I do need to take some grinding time to level things up, finishing up the last five this month feels very doable.

Finally, the Magic: Legends open beta is scheduled to start on March 23. I’ve been interested in this one since it was announced, and I am very much looking forward to trying it out later this month.

And who knows, I may find myself unable to resist the siren song of Valheim – it feels like absolutely everyone is playing it, and I am definitely intrigued, although I fear it’ll prove too difficult to really be much fun for me.

In Review – February 2021

The World of Warcraft burn-out phase has begun in earnest; I’m down around 80 hours from last month, and it likely would have been more if I hadn’t spent a whole lot of time and energy leveling a healer for our alt raid. This past weekend, I did a few Mythic zeros with her, and since then, I’ve sort of forced myself to take a step back. It wasn’t an issue with the time I was spending (time is one of the few things I have plenty of), but the fact that I wasn’t enjoying much of it.

I have gotten far too comfortable with letting that be the structure in my life, and I would have been content to carry on that way for a bit longer, but it’s a lot harder to justify when I find myself dreading doing my virtual chores. This is the crux of my love-hate relationships with MMOs in general – when they’re fun, they’re really fun, and I really enjoy spending virtual time with friends. However, they’re built to make players feel a sense of obligation and a fear of falling behind, and I know I’m particularly susceptible to those influences, so I have to check in with myself often to make sure I’m doing something I want to do, and not something I feel like I have to do.

As a result, the tail end of February ended up being somewhat of a wasted week, because I couldn’t figure out what I wanted to do if I wasn’t playing World of Warcraft all the time. I still had our progression raid night, and I popped on a couple of times for very short periods, hoping to find a balance that will let me do the things I actually enjoy without feeling tethered to the game.

For #DatingSiMonth, I played Best Friend Forever and Kitty Powers’ Matchmaker, and I think I can confidently say that I’m just not mad for dating sims, and I think I’ve given them a fair shake at this point. Does that mean I’ll never play another? Probably not. They can be a fun little diversion (and I’m definitely more likely to seek out ones with some management or strategy elements, rather than pure visual novels), but romance stories aren’t really my bag in any form – I don’t read romance novels and I can’t think of more than a handful of rom-com movies I’ve really enjoyed. When #VNNovember rolls around, I’ll definitely be looking to play something a little bit darker.


Probably the thing that threw my month further off-plan than anything else was my acquisition of a Nintendo Switch. It was something I’d been toying with picking up for quite a while now, as I wasn’t sure it was something I would get enough use out of to make it worth the investment.

Well, on that point, I was absolutely wrong. My main concern was that I have absolutely zero Nintendo nostalgia – and first party Nintendo games are really the biggest pro to the Switch. I’ve dabbled in Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and I’m playing Animal Crossing: New Horizons super casually.

However, I’ve been playing Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth for over 30 hours over the past couple of weeks, and for me, this was pretty much the perfect game to get me comfortable with the system. I mostly don’t know what I’m doing, and the game isn’t great at explaining things. I was well into chapter 10 before I blundered into how to actually use all that equipment I’d been picking up. I am just now starting to get to Digimon battles that are challenging enough that I actually need to plan ahead and make sure I have the right ‘mons for the job. This probably means I’m just shy of the point that I’m going to go have to grind some levels somewhere, since I’ve been Digivolving my little friends pretty much willy nilly, but I’m pretty sure I’m okay with that.

And if I understand correctly, this is only the first part – once I beat the main story, there’s a second, DLC-style story. No regrets at all on dropping $30 on this one.

I’ve started checking DekuDeals a couple of times a day, and am very slowly building up a Switch library, mostly made up of things I am interested in, but unlikely to play on PC for one reason or another. I have grabbed a couple things that I already have in my Steam library (Cattails seems to be well suited for handheld play, and I’ve always meant to get back into Crashlands), but the console tax and my desire to pick mostly replayable titles is keeping me from going too crazy.


Otherwise, I pretty much just dabbled this month. Even the Steam Game Festival didn’t inspire me to check out a bunch of new things – obviously at this point, I am spoiled for choice, and I’m really feeling a bit overwhelmed when it comes to what I want to play next. I picked a couple new games, the first of which (Best Friend Forever), I bought knowing that I’d play right away. However, I did spend an hour or so with Dysmantle – I enjoyed it less than I expected to, but not enough less to return it. Since it’s an Early Access title, I am optimistic that some of the rough edges will get smoothed out with time. But if I’m being honest, I kind of regret grabbing that title instead of the Valheim, which seems to be the survival game that everyone is playing right now.

I’ve also started playing Cook, Serve, Delicious 2 again – from scratch, because I know I’m going to need to rebuild the muscle memory to do well at it. This will be at least my third restart, and I’d really like to work towards getting all the gold medals in the Chef for Hire restaurants this time around. If it becomes frustrating rather than satisfyingly challenging, I’ll likely drop it again, but it’s a goal to work towards that feels achievable.

Nerd Girl Goals – February 2021

GAMING

Play to Satisfaction

For me, saying “Play to Satisfaction” gives me explicit permission to drop a game that’s not working for me, but also to grind away for nerd points if I’m really loving something. I’m trying to make it a policy for myself that I will always play to satisfaction – no more, no less.

Subscription MMO – World of Warcraft Retail

I expect that this will be an even slower month for World of Warcraft – I haven’t been all that into leveling more characters, and there’s less and less in Shadowlands I feel like I have to do. I’d like to keep up with renown on all four characters, and continue raiding Castle Nathria normal. I’ll work on anima collection when the world quests are worthwhile, and I’d like to keep cleaning up unfinished stuff from old expacs. It still sounds like a lot, but since I’m pretty much in a holding pattern outside of raid progression until the 9.1 patch, if I manage my time well, I could probably spend about 1/3 less time on WoW this month as I did last month and not feel like I’m missing out on anything.

I am also excited to check out BlizzConline, which takes place from February 19th and 20th, which will hopefully give us some insight into what comes next for Shadowlands.

Community Game Along – #DatingSiMonth

I picked up Kitty Powers: Matchmaker during the Steam Winter Sale with the intent of playing it this month for #DatingSiMonth. I’m not a huge fan of dating sims as a genre, but I love the idea of combining them with a management game, so I think I’ll enjoy this one.

I’ve also selected a couple “back up” games for the month from my library – Speed Dating for Ghosts, and Hustle Cat, in case either I don’t find myself enjoying my first choice, or I burn through it quickly and am looking for more!

Subscription Game Service – XBox Game Pass for PC

With the amount of MMO time I’ve been putting in, I haven’t paid much attention to the subscription gaming services in a few months. However, the end of January saw a couple of additions to XBox Game Pass for PC that I’m very much interested in, but probably wouldn’t actually buy. This month, I’m looking at trying out The Medium and Control, but honestly, I’ll be happy if I get around to one or the other. I’d be giddy if I manage to squeeze in both during the same month.

Other Games

I’m still struggling quite a bit with the controls on Hardspace: Shipbreaker, so I’d like to spend a few more hours with it this month until moving around starts to feel natural. I have no idea when to expect the next major patch, seeing as one just came out, but I’d like to be able to dive right into story mode when it does.

Looking over this now, there’s a lot here, and as per usual, I know I won’t get around to half of it. However, I do game a lot more during the winter months, when other hobbies seem so much less appealing, so maybe I’ll surprise myself.

In Review – January 2021

Another month gone by, and again, it was dominated by World of Warcraft. That said, I played a bit less than I did in December. I had predicted that my time would likely increase a bit as I spent time on alts and old content, but what I found in actuality was that when I didn’t have firm plans for my play time, I tended to wander off and play something else, or indulge in other hobbies. I’ve completed all four convenant campaign stories on the four characters I leveled initially, and I’m finding that I’m not really feeling a sense of urgency about catching up my other characters. I’m enjoying Shadowlands enough that I’m expecting I’ll keep subbing throughout (unless something changes majorly to detract from the fun I’m having), so I figure I have at least another 18 months to level alts. No reason at all to rush.


I manage to complete three different games during #PuzzleGameMonth for the Community Game-Along, although I did go completely off-script from what I had planned. I did try out Outer Wilds, but the combination of feeling like I just wasn’t getting the concept and the fact that I’m a goddamn awful spaceship pirate left me looking for something else, although I do expect I’ll revisit it at some point in the future.

Short games seemed to work best for me, as all three that I completed all took me around two hours to complete. Other puzzle games I dabbled in this month included Animated Puzzles, Peggle Nights, Munin, Simply Puzzles: Codewords, and Doodle God, but I wouldn’t say I made any significant progress in any of them.


I also added a couple of new games to the library which were impulse purchases, but in a surprising turn of events, they were impulse purchases which I proceeded to install and play!

The last time I had peeked at Amazing Cultivation Simulator, English wasn’t a supported language, and despite the fact that the game otherwise looked right up my alley, I figured not being able to read any of the text was going to be a deal-breaker. However, when the game launched version 1.0 last November, it came with English language support, so when I spotted it on sale, I knew I wanted to pick it up. Sure, I don’t need another massive time suck colony management game (especially since I haven’t even looked at Rimworld in around two years), but I just found the whole concept and art style so appealing. So far, I’ve only spent about half an hour with it, slowly making my way through its robust series of tutorials, but I imagine at some point in the not-so-distant future, this game will take a good chunk out of my gaming time.

My other impulse pick-up was Hardspace: Shipbreaker, which has fantastic reviews, despite still being in Early Access. I’d been keeping an eye out for a new low-commitment chill game, and breaking down derilict space ships to pay off massive amounts of crushing debt is actually fitting the bill. I am taking advantage of the easy mode while I get comfortable with the 3D movement and figuring out how everything fits together, but not being limited by shift length and oxygen drain really does make this game almost meditative. It’s something I will definitely poke at here and there until the release of the first chapter of story mode coming in the next major update, at which time I’ll likely shelve it until full release.


It’s been quite a while at this point since I was investing so much of my time into a single game over a period of months – even when I was playing ESO regularly, I wasn’t dedicating half this much raw play time. It has definitely made an impact on how much other stuff I’ve had time to play around with, but really, it mostly has gotten rid of the hours I was spending trying to figure out what I wanted to be doing.

I won’t lie – pandemic life has gotten really old, even for someone who is as introverted as I am, and mostly happy to stay home. Mostly, I feel like I’ve missed having a schedule, and MMO-life has brought a little bit of that back with scheduled guild events and weekly chore lists. It’s comforting having something that manages to be both new and familiar all at once.

In Review – December 2020

I seriously considered skipping out on this post this month because (with some very minor exceptions), all of my gaming time was spent neck-deep in World of Warcraft. Normally, I’m a dabbler, but I’ve been all in all month long.

If I hadn’t been tracking it, I wouldn’t have believed I spent over two hundred hours with a single game over the course of a month. Of course, there’s no way to differentiate idle time from active playing time, and I do tend to leave WoW running and walk away to do other things.

I did play a couple of chapters of Sherlock Holmes: Crimes & Punishments for #AdventureGameDec, completed 10 turns in Civilization 6 for Long Live the Queen, played a handful of games of SMITE, and played through the tutorial of Dawn of Man. Even totaled up, that only account for about 6 hours of time, and all my other game time was spent in the Shadowlands.

I guess that means – at least for me – the $40 I dropped on Shadowlands was a good time-for-entertainment investment, even when you tack on a month’s subscription fee. Although I haven’t been making tons of gold, I did just pick up a token, so I should be able to go back to subbing via in-game gold again. Given my guild’s super-casual raid schedule, I’m expecting most of my play time over the next month to be spent leveling up more alts, and maybe spending more time in previous expansions increasing my nerd point total.


Happy New Year, friends. I hope your 2021 is full of all the best nerdery!

Nerd Girl Goals – December 2020

Community Game Along – #AdventureGamesDec

I don’t even want to admit to how many point and click adventure games are sitting, never touched, in my library. Still, I just picked up Sherlock Holmes: Crimes & Punishments a couple weeks ago at an absurdly deep discount with the intent of playing it during December. After all, who doesn’t love curling up with a good mystery when it’s cold and blustery outside?

I’m not going to pre-select any alternate or additional games fitting the theme this month, but I am not short of options, including most of the other Sherlock Holmes titles. I’ve also been itching to dive back into The Council, and I’m pretty sure that’d fall under the umbrella of this theme.

Subscription Gaming

I’ve left my choice for subscription game service as To Be Determined for December, and I’m likely not going to use one this month. There are still several games on XBox Game Pass I’d like to try, but I also know that even this year, there’s likely to be a lot going on in December, and besides, Shadowlands is still very fresh and I’m likely to spend a lot of time there.

I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to already being a bit concerned about the longevity of the initial Shadowlands content for someone who tends to avoid doing dungeons and raids – at least while they’re current content. However, I’ve decided to renew my sub in December and see how long I stay engaged. If I lose interest in the new stuff, there’s a lot of old stuff I still want to dabble in, as my play has been pretty sporadic going back as far as Warlords of Draenor.

I mean, I’m getting awfully close to 20,000 achievement points, so that’s definitely a thing I want to spend some time filling out. In the short term, I’d like to get a total of four characters to level 60 and keep up with progressing them each through their covenants, but I don’t expect to do much in the way of the gear grind for most of my alts.

GAMING

Play to Satisfaction

For me, saying “Play to Satisfaction” gives me explicit permission to drop a game that’s not working for me, but also to grind away for nerd points if I’m really loving something. I’m trying to make it a policy for myself that I will always play to satisfaction – no more, no less.

I don’t know that I want to put much of anything else on my plate this month, but it’s my turn again in our Long Live the Queen game in Civilization 6, so I should be posting about that before the week is out.

But I feel like it’s almost traditional to drop a few titles here that I probably won’t touch. I did recently download King’s Bounty: The Legend after reading that it was reminiscent of the Heroes of Might & Magic games. I also just picked up Megaquarium and Cattails during the Steam Autumn Sale, and I really did love the demo of Crying Suns which was in the most recent Humble Monthly. Maybe I’ll fire up one of those before the end of 2020.

In Review – November 2020

This has been another month that has gone by in a flash while feeling so very very long. In fact, without ManicTime (and my earlier blog entries), I would have forgotten about approximately half of what I played this month.

I’m assuming that “nw” represents the time I spent on Aviary Attorney for the Community Game Along.

As you can probably tell, World of Warcraft took up a huge amount of my time this month. Back on November 13th, just under two weeks before Shadlowlands launched, all of a sudden I was motivated to start leveling characters. And level I did. I went from having five level 50 characters to having twice that number (including a Kul’Tiran mage and Void Elf hunter who were basically brand new characters).

Since Tuesday, I’ve leveled up my shaman, gotten my druid to 58, and trucked an additional five characters through the opening scenario so I could start working their professions. Unfortunately, I might have missed the big money making window of crafting materials and early crafted upgrades, but I really enjoyed the journey, even if I’m not entirely sure what to do with myself at max level.


Earlier in the month, I made my way through two visual novels for the Community Game Along. I’m still not entirely sold on the genre as a whole, but I really liked Murder Most Misfortunate, and I did find Aviary Attorney interesting, if a little bit frustrating.

I slaughtered a massive number of zombies in Dead Rising 4 to distract me from the Presidential election and, despite it being a pretty awful Dead Rising game, I found it to be a pretty satisfying zombie game.

The rest of my gaming this month was merely dabbling – a couple multiplayer games with friends, a dozen hours of Autonauts, and just enough time with Carto to appreciate the mechanics. I thought I’d probably return to it, but once I did a deep dive into World of Warcraft, everything else sort of fell by the wayside.


With a whopping 158 hours spent on gaming in November, I really didn’t have much time for any other hobbies – I didn’t watch much television, do much reading, or do any non-blog writing at all, so there were definitely goals I made at the beginning of the month that went un-met. I’m surprisingly fine with that. Despite mostly having been handing the — well, the whole lot of everything going on out there — pretty well, there’s also been a lot of stress both big and small, and whatever is getting me through is going to be good enough for me for now.

Nerd Girl Goals – November 2020

Community Game Along – #VNNovember

For the longest time, I thought visual novels were basically romance novels for your computer, and I paid very little attention to the genre as a whole. Now, I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with that – it just wasn’t for me. I don’t read romance novels, rarely watch sitcoms or romantic comedies, and I’ve mostly stayed away from Visual Novels and Dating Sims for the same reason – it’s just a topic outside of my interests.

But somehow, over the years as I’ve been building my excessive Steam library, I’ve managed to acquire an awful lot of games that have the tag for Visual Novel that aren’t romance-focused. For my primary choice this month, I’m going to go with Aviary Attorney, but I’ve also picked out a few back-up titles, and none of them are primarily romantic in nature.

I’m particularly interested in Methods: The Detective Competition – I’ve recently played the first several chapters in the demo, and plan on picking it up today as it’s on sale at the moment. I have also played the first case of Night Call in the past, and have been meaning to revisit it. I also am considering Va-11 Hall-A: Cyberpunk Bartender Action and Tokyo Twilight Ghost Hunters Daybreak: Special Gigs if I find I’m really enjoying the theme this month.

Subscription Gaming

Since my World of Warcraft sub is still going to be active for Shadowlands release, I expect that, despite and absurd amount of waffling, I will be grabbing the expansion and leveling at least my shaman through the new content. In the meantime, I’d like to get at least two more characters to level 50, and participate in the pre-release event.

I should probably look into what the pre-release event is going to entail.

I am still finding myself not particularly invested, but vaguely interested, and I don’t know if that’s because my affection for World of Warcraft has evolved into nostalgia, or if my current state of mind just isn’t allowing me to get particularly excited about much of anything right now.

I’m also planning on maintaining my XBox GamePass for PC subscription through the month of November, as there’s still a few things I have downloaded and haven’t even poked at yet. I also would like to check out Deep Rock Galactic (available November 5), and maybe give Eastshade another shot since I ended up returning it when I picked it up on Steam.

GAMING

Play to Satisfaction

For me, saying “Play to Satisfaction” gives me explicit permission to drop a game that’s not working for me, but also to grind away for nerd points if I’m really loving something. I’m trying to make it a policy for myself that I will always play to satisfaction – no more, no less.

I keep overfilling my plate before I get to this section, but yet again, I want to allow for some leeway for myself. I am likely to keep dabbling in SMITE, Among Us, and Puzzle Pirates throughout the month – the first two mainly to spend time with friends, and the third because I’ve found it oddly soothing as of late.

I’ve also been itching to play something building-focused and fiddly, and although Planet Zoo hasn’t hit a price point that I’m willing to pull the trigger on (especially with all the DLC, lordy!), I do have Planet Coaster hanging out unplayed in my library, so I might give that a whirl this month.

Reading & Watching & Other Stuff

So far, I have (mostly) been keeping up with The Pike Cast reading list, although the fourth book they’re covering – Monster – is making it’s way to me all the way from Australia, so I may be a bit late on that one.

They recently released the list of the next five titles they’re planning to cover, and I have gotten them all ordered! I’m particularly excited to listen to the episode on Scavenger Hunt, which is one of my top three Pike novels. Of course, with a release date of every two weeks, it’ll be February before that episode airs.

Which, I suppose, indirectly leads into the other stuff section.

Once upon a time, November for me was all about NaNoWriMo, but it’s been 8 years since I last attempted it, and fifteen since I’ve completed the month long marathon of writing. In fact, it’s probably been five years or more since I’ve even dabbled in fiction writing. I don’t know how good I may have been at one time, or how much those creative muscles have atrophied, but I miss it.

Since I’ve been out of the game a long time, and – let’s be honest – there’s a whole lot of other stress in everyone’s life right now, I’ve decided not to tackle the whole thing this year. Instead, I’m going to set a goal of completing a half-NaNoWriMo; 25,000 words instead of the full 50,000.

If I can get back into the groove, I figure I could finish up a YA thriller / horror novel of appropriate length in about three months. That feels doable to me. I have a vague idea already, and I’m absolutely taking some inspiration from the Christopher Pike books I’ve been re-reading lately. It won’t exactly be fan fiction, but I feel like it’s not that far off either.

I’d also like to get back to some of the TV shows I talked about wanting to watch back in April, assuming my attention span permits it. I feel like I’ve been completely wasting a lot of my time lately, and making a TV date with myself may not be the peak of productivity, but it will also enable to me to get reacquainted with the crafting activities that I enjoy.


There’s no question in mind that I’ve completely overloaded my November goals, but with the holidays being even more low-key than usual this year, and this being the start of the Great Season of Hibernation at our house, I may not have overloaded them nearly as much as it seems. I’m hoping that this month will bring a good mix of self-soothing and rediscovery of things I used to really enjoy.