For most of this month I have been battling some respiratory crud that keeps circulating and recirculating through the office. I’m currently in another under the weather spell which means that my gaming habits are a bit off. However it is approximately that time again where I should post what all is in circulation at the Belghast household during the month of February. For those who have not seen this post before, it is essentially my process of semi-monthly truing up the sidebar of the blog and talking about the various games contained within. I am notoriously bad at sticking with series but one of my 2019 goals is to try and keep this up to date throughout the year.
To Those Remaining
Assassin’s Creed Origins – PC
I legitimately do not expect this game to stay on the list much longer. I’ve reached the point where I am a few hours away from the end of the game and as such going through my stalling tactic that avoids actually playing it out. I think part of this is my wanting a story to not be over, and part of it is knowing how frustrated the ending is going to make me since it will be forcing me to NOT play my actual character. One way or another however I expect by March this one will drop off the list. For now however I spent a significant amount of time early in the month and late January playing this so it stays on the list.
Destiny 2 – PC
I’ve not played nearly as much Destiny 2 this month as I probably would have liked. I spent a lot of time logging in and back out again because for whatever reason it did not seem to scratch whatever gaming itch I was having at the time. A lot of this lost time went to Assassin’s Creed Origins, which really did hold me in thrall for a few weeks there. I am sure at some point in the near future I will return to being active again, but for now I am logging in doing a few objectives and then logging right back out. Still keeping it in the rotation but my weekly play time has decreased significantly.
Dragalia Lost – Android
The thing this game does better than pretty much anything else I have seen… is keep a constant flow of content coming out that makes you want to pop in and participate in each and every event. Right now there is a Valentines event that isn’t really my jam… but I am still participating regularly and I applaud them trying to break up the formula. Most of the story in Dragalia Lost is completely nonsense… so when you create an event that is almost entirely story driven… it is equally nonsense. However it has served as a great way to stock up on some of the rarer items that you can purchase with the extremely easy to obtain “rose” currency. It has however made me burn down my stack of skip tokens so that is a bit of a negative. Still playing… still engaged.
Elder Scrolls Online – PC
Another game that is sort of holding on by a thread is Elder Scrolls Online. While I love this game I am just not playing nearly as much as I probably should be of it. I need to start the Morrowind content because it would give me a sense of grounding in the story that I need to keep logging in on a nightly basis. That said I have had plenty of games on my plate so I am fine with a few of them slipping off the easy to reach shelf for a moment. I need to buy that 1 TB SSD/M.2 drive I have been contemplating because I don’t have a ton of space on my current boot drive. I think this is a game that would DEFINITELY be improved by an SSD given how much loading happens. A big problem with me and this game right now is knowing how long it is going to take before I load all of the way into it.
Final Fantasy XIV – PC
I’ve been going through a bit of a renaissance here this month as I finished leveling Blue Mage to the level cap of 50 and am a single dungeon away from being caught up with the story. That said… Anthem happened and sorta threw any time that I would be devoting to Final Fantasy for a loop. However I am starting to feel like I am back in the swing of things. I am focusing on the Samurai since tanking for strangers seemed like a bit too far off the path for me to wander. Weirdly I find the dungeon queues for DPS to be massively improved over what they previously were… so maybe that isn’t a horrible choice. Samurai is a really fun class but it still very much feels like I am “alting”.
Magic the Gathering Arena – PC
Still in the regular rotation but not spending an awful lot of time there on a weekly basis is Magic the Gathering Arena. I’ve participated in a few events this month with the release of Ravnica Allegiances and all in all still enjoying the format. The biggest problem I am having at the moment is that formats I am likely to enjoy the most… Pauper and Singleton are dominated by degenerate decks like Rat Colony or Persistent Petitioners. Both of which are entertaining the first time you encounter them… but end up with me just conceding out of the match so I can move on with my life. I is not that the decks are unbeatable… it is just that it isn’t worth my time to go through the motions. What makes it worse is the mechanics of MTG Arena make them super easy to field given that if you have 4 copies of a card in your library you effectively have an UNLIMITED number of that card in your library since the system can only keep track of 4 copies. That means instead of forcing someone to burn through 24+ common tokens… they have to use 4 at most. I should build up a proper standard deck and just play that format, but for now I only really play MTGA when I am not feeling like anything else.
Monster Hunter World – PC
Another game that is holding on by a thread is Monster Hunter World, and it isn’t for lack of wanting to play… but more a case that I have a wealth of other games to play right now that all function similarly. I consider Anthem, Destiny and Monster Hunter to all be filling the same basic niche of the MMO-Lite style of game. For now I am devoting those efforts to Anthem, but I am sure in the coming months some of that time will be spent killing monsters. When some of the console exclusive quests start trickling over to PC I am sure I will come back in and participate in them again. That is a major problem I have with the PC version right now however is the staggered release schedule. It should have been their goal to catch the PC up at a hyper inflated rate so that they could have events going on in both locations at the same time. However Capcom seems to be fine with leaving PC as a less than equal version of the game… which I find maddening. I am hoping with the expansion that all of this shakes out and they can both be on equal footing once and for all.
Pokemon Go – Android
I have to admit that the only thing really keeping me engaged with Pokemon Go right now is the fact that Android Wear integrates with it. What means my TicWatch E is constantly logging steps made and giving me credit so… I spend most of my time hatching eggs. That means I am also using my backlog of friend gifts as a repository for getting more of the eggs that I want to hatch. At this moment I spent some coins on the store and am hatching ALL the eggs at once so I can clear all 9 slots for more friend egg hatching nonsense. Side note… I love my TicWatch E and at some point should probably write a post about it since I have been using it for months after my formerly beloved Pebble Time stopped synchronizing with my phone.
To The Returning and Brand New
Anthem – PC
This is the new hotness in my life and I am loving the game. Seeing a lot of negative reviews floating about and I keep thinking that they are playing a different game. Flying around in a mech suit has been a dream of mine since I was a little kid. There were some folks that loved the Valkyries from Robotech… but for me… it was all about the Cyclone armor. In the Rifts pen and paper game… it was all about the S.A.M.A.S. and the Glitterboys. In Fallout I have sought out wearing Powered Armor as soon as I could possibly get a suit. So as a result there may be a player fantasy that Anthem is providing that fits neatly into my wheelhouse. I am having a blast and look forward to seeing what the world as a whole feels about the game on Friday. I think the big publication game reviewers in general consider being bitter fucks about everything to be “on brand”, so as such I largely ignore them. Instead when it comes to games… my focus tends to be how my friends with similar play styles are feeling about a new title.
To Those Departing
Ashen – PC
This game while super interesting… just did not stand the test of time for me personally. I stalled out and never wound up returning to it. This was not helped by the fact I went through a week where the Epic Games launcher kept crashing constantly for me. I probably will return to it at some point because I still find what it is doing interesting, it just lost out to other games that were holding my attention a bit better.
Far Cry 5 – PC
Ultimately I beat the game and as a result it fell off my radar. At some point I will probably play through the Zombie Survival mode of the game just to see what it is all about. However I more or less moved on to Assassin’s Creed Origins and as a result this is dropping off the list. You can follow down some of my post about the game to track my sentiments, because while I loved a lot of the experience it had real flaws when it came to the forced narrative. Still would absolutely play again… and it makes me want to spend some more time in Far Cry 4.
Minecraft – Windows Store
Not shocked at all to see this dropping off the list because this tends to be how I play Minecraft lately. I will go through an obsessive building phase for a few weeks… and then stop playing altogether for several months. Still a great game and shocked at just how evergreen the experience of virtual legos ends up being for me for the long run. I do not care at all about the survival aspects and tend to play the game mostly on creative mode. I return to this when my mind wants me to build something… and exit again once I have finished tinkering with it. It serves a glorious purpose in my life and I am thankful to have it. Playing Minecraft calms me.
All in all there was not a ton of movement this month, but I will say there are a bunch of games in danger of dropping off the list come next time. I also know that Division 2 is looming on the horizon and I am not sure where it will fit into the entire apparatus since it is launching roughly a month after Anthem. All in all… question to the readers. Do you enjoy this column of sorts or do you wish I would just drop it and do normal posts in place of them?