Gaming
Published 2021-07-29

I'm a PC gamer. I don't subscribe to the gatekeeping of gaming, so none of that "PC Master Race" stuff. Games are for fun, and if you're having fun playing some gem game or a cow clicker, then you're doing it right.

Shooter games

As my beard gets longer, my reaction times do, too. I'm not sure about the correlation there, but the end result is that I just can't compete in multiplayer anymore. I don't have the skill anymore.

Back in the day, a friend and I had a small Action Quake 2 clan, and while we were more focused on having fun than on being competitive, we were really good at it. I also had a short run of being really good at Unreal Tournament, specifically the 2004 version, but I never had the time to get good enough to compete at any level.

These days, I play shooters single player to have fun, blow off some steam and experience whatever story is available. Sadly, the campaign is more and more neglected in modern shooter games, as the Live Service plague spreads, but hopefully that tide will turn. If GTA6 doesn't have a single player campaign, or is always-online Live Service hogwash, I will write a stern email to Take2. I'm sure they'll apologize profusely and patch that right away.

Strategy

Have you ever played Dark Reign? How about Command&Conquer? Black & White? I'd love to say strategy games used to be better, but in all honestly I think I just used to be better at them.

These days I think the best strategy experiences are in indie games, like Mindustry and Creeper World 4, but of course I bought the refurbished CnC when it came out.

Sure, I enjoy a good turn based 4X as much as the next guy, but for me it's mostly about the real time stuff. If I can pause and still issue orders, then I'm golden. A great mix is when the orders are turn based, but the actions happen simultaniously, like in BSG: Deadlock. RTS is where my heart lives, though.

Survival

Thousands upon thousands of hours. Early Access hell. This is where I spend the most time. I'm not entirely sure I enjoy it the most, but it certainly is a great time sink.

Open world crafting and base building is fantastic when done right, but there are so many ways to do it wrong. Rust, for example, does a lot of things right, but when the end result of 20 hours of grinding a base together ends up looking like an improvised shack, I lose intrest.

Valheim, though. Holy macron, that game isn't even a third finished, and I already love it more than I ever thought.

Hopefully games like Eco, that simulate the environment and pretty much the whole world, will become more common. Eco is spectaculary well made, but like so many of these games, it's still Early Access and probably will be for quite a while. I'm keeping an eye on it to see where it goes, for sure!

RPG

Skyrim never captured me as much as Morrowind did, but I still bought it three times. My love for pen-and-paper roleplaying in The Olden Days lead me to this genre of game, and while I love many of these games for their stories and worlds, I tend to grow tired with them. Roleplaying, for me, is all about interacting with people, and NPCs can only take so many arrows to the knee before they become stale, you know?

MMORPG

This is where it all comes togehter. The action of a shooter game, the longer term planning of a strategy game, the resource gathering and crafting of a survival game, the RP elements, they're all there in a good MMORPG.

I never got into World of Warcraft, but that doesn't mean I haven't had thousands and thousands of hours of fun in this genre. I've loved my insane guildemates in Anarchy Online, the compelling story of The Secret World, and so many other parts in so many other games. MMORPGs come and go for me, but the genre keeps sucking me back in. I don't remember exactly, but I think I passed 10,000 hours in EverQuest II.

Currently, my hopes are on Starbase, and I'm literally writing this page to kill time while waiting for it to go into Early Access today. Under two hours now!

To be continued!