Hooboy, I haven’t done one of these in a very long time. However, considering the way I’ve been interacting with … well, pretty much everything, I figured a sum-up post would be a whole lot better than no post at all. With that said…
World of Warcraft Pre-Patch
I’ve been waiting oh-so-impatiently for the pre-patch to make an appearance, and now that it’s here, I’m finding myself both overwhelmed and unenthused simultaneously. On the upside, the leveling experience feels lightning-fast – I managed to take my warlock from level 21 to 50 in just a few days. My paladin, who only needed about 6 level pre-patch was finished up in a matter of hours. Having finished up those goals, though, I’m feeling more or less uninterested in continuing, and as of right now, I’m still not sure whether I’m planning to pick up Shadowlands on release.
I love the idea of getting all my alts ready for the new content, but I’m apprehensive about what looks like it’s going to be a massive gear gap going into new expansion leveling. Also, I have expansions worth of old crafting materials on the characters I had played regularly in the past, and the whole concept of figuring out what might or might not still be worth something is more work than I’m willing to put in right now.
Unfortunately, due to a glitch in paying for sub time with tokens on patch day, I have an active subscription until December 13th, so I hope I get re-motivated to at least do a little something with all that game time.
I stumbled across Abracadabrew while poking around on Steam for something else for my friend group to try out on days we had a small group that wasn’t really interested in playing anything too serious. Although this one was designed for local co-op, it also allows multiplayer via Steam Remote Play Together.
Unfortunately, it isn’t likely to work for the particular group of folks I had in mind. Still, I spent about an hour and a half playing on my own, and it fills a niche for me of bite sized gaming. I don’t expect it to have a lot of staying power – as a game designed for co-op, it’s pretty damn difficult to beat the intermediate levels as a solo player.
The entire game play loop consists of opening containers to find ingredients to mix potions. There are also events that need to be dealt with, such as your cauldron floating away or bats covering the entirety of your screen. The mechanics are simple, but the timers are tight, and I can see how this could be really enjoyable with a couple friends.
I played text adventures when they were the peak of technology, and I remember how profoundly frustrating they can be, so Stories Untold isn’t a game I would have been likely to seek out. I received it in the September 17 Humble Monthly, and finally decided to give it a try last week.
If I’m completely candid, there was nothing about any of the game play that impressed me. I still don’t care for text input as a game mechanic, the “puzzles” were more exercises in tedium than actual puzzles, and in almost all of the chapters, the pacing felt off to me.
That said, the narrative was really well composed, and I am glad that I played it (although I admit to using a walkthrough). The whole thing took just under two hours, and I could easily have had 100% completion on one play through, but I missed a few things in the last chapter rushing through to get to the ending.
I’m glad I played it, and I absolutely appreciate the game for the things it did well, but I’m not sure it’s anything I would recommend.
In a completely bizarre turn of events, I’ve also been dabbling in Puzzle Pirates again. I played this one extensively around the time it released, and poked it again very briefly a few years ago when I noticed it on Steam. At the time, it felt very very dead, and I decided that there just wasn’t enough to do without a whole bunch of people, or paying for a subscription.
This time, I did my research. Apparently, the only action to be found is on the Emerald Ocean, which is not where I had my characters previously. So I find myself starting over, this time on a server utilizing the premium currency option rather than the flat monthly fee. I’m still not 100% sure how I feel about the Dubloon system, but I am really enjoying jobbing on ships and slowly working on getting my puzzling reputations up.
It’s been a very very long time, and there’s a lot of things that have changed, and even more that I’ve forgotten, but this has really been my perfect zone out game. I can’t tell you how much of that is due to nostalgia, and how much is due to the mechanics of this 17 year old game still being solid and satisfying, but I’m just glad it’s working for me.