Four Months Later

I’m realizing I’m terrible at blogging. I just don’t care enough to find the time. Too busy binge-watching tv shows, playing Minecraft, and reading books. Which I guess is a good thing. Sorry if you subscribed to this in hopes of actually having consistent reading material. Oops…

Recently Binge-Watched:

  • Chicago Fire
  • Chicago Med
  • Togetherness – Very underrated show. As someone in my mid-30’s who quite often feels like I’m faking being an adult, this show really speaks to me.
  • How To Get Away With Murder – I had to wait until this one was all on Netflix to watch it. It’s just got way too many storylines to keep track of week-to-week. Love this show but seriously cannot mentally track with it unless I’m binge-watching it. Not sure if that says more about me and my internet-brain or the brilliant writing of the show.
  • 11.22.63 – Really fascinating mini-series. I highly recommend it.

Currently Really Into:

  • Game of Thrones – No explanation necessary here, I’m sure.
  • Fear the Walking Dead – Kind of not quite as cool as Walking Dead, but still really fascinating. Makes me think how awkward it would be to be on vacation with my family during a zombie apocalypse. I cannot see that ending well. Lol.

What I’ve Been Playing

  • Minecraft
  • Minecraft
  • Oh and more Minecraft

What I’ve Been Reading

  • 11.22.63 – If you haven’t read it but enjoyed the show, I highly recommend it. Or even if you haven’t read the show but generally like Stephen King, I highly recommend it. Just… I highly recommend it. It’s a very fascinating time-travel story. And we haven’t even gotten to the JFK part yet. Just imagine that you traveled back to the time your parents were little kids. Seriously a trippy concept that somehow never gets old for me.
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Day 16: Catching Up

Been pushing through my Tivo this week, as well as watched a few videos I had rented on iTunes like 3 weeks ago. It’s nice to clear the shelves a bit, so to speak.

Got caught up on:

  • Chicago Fire
  • Chicago Med
  • Scream Queens
  • Nashville
  • Survivor

Watched:

  • San Andreas
  • Barely Lethal
  • Final Girls

I’m also totally geeking out on season 3 of How to Minecraft, a YouTube series I’ve been following for awhile now. I just discovered last night that season 3 was already underway, 10 days deep. I know what I’ll be doing this weekend!

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This week as well was the release of Sims 4: Get Together, which I had already preordered. I’ve played it a few hours already. So far, so good. I like the new social club feature. Just in general too, it added the ability to have group outings, with or without clubs, so I had townie Sims texting me to come hang out, go to their birthday parties, etc. Makes the game feel a lot more alive!

Also, I broke out my Minecraft again yesterday, after having not played it for quite a while (well, about a month). That’s one game I have a hard time getting tired of! My favorite part is starting a new world. Not sure why – the fun of adventuring around, discovering things, and building up a new base is just super fun to me.

Day 11 – Weekends Are Brutal On The Pocketbook

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I may have purchased a bunch of video games yesterday.

Like a lot of them.

To be fair, most of them were re-buys of PS3 games on the PS4, since I’m trying to pull over games I want to play all onto the same system.

Then there were the ones that I just wanted to buy.

I have a problem, I know!


So what did I buy? Glad you asked. 🙂

Walking Dead – seasons 1 and 2
I already owned season 1 on PS3, but couldn’t bring myself to finish it knowing that all future seasons would also need to be purchased on the same system in order to continue the storyline. Might as well start over on the newest platform.

Tomb Raider
I already owned on PS3, but haven’t gotten very far. The sequel will be on PS4 anyway, so might as well own both on the PS4.

The Last of Us
Again I already own on PS3, but haven’t gotten very far. I figured I’d probably need to start over anyway to remember what happened so starting over on the PS4 would be way more fun.

Life is Strange season 1
I do own this as well on PS3, but with the second season coming out soon, I decided I’d rather collect them on the newest console. I’ve only played episode one on the PS3, so starting over won’t be a big deal.

Beyond Two Souls
I’ve actually beat this one (one of the few games I have finished on PS3), but was very intrigued by the updated feature in the PS4 version to be able to play chronologically. If you haven’t already played this, definitely play the director’s order first, but once you’re done, I think it would be worth a try playing through chronologically. I’ll let you know how it goes for me.


And then there were the games I didn’t already own but were on some sort of sale and I’ve heard good things about them so…. yeah…. I’m totally failing my video-game-buying fast, aren’t i?

  • Little Big Planet (Because I keep hearing cool things about this series. I’ve never played any of them before).
  • Thief (Because I played the demo and found it really interesting).
  • Game of Thrones season 1 (Because it’s Game of Thrones. What other reason do I need really?)
  • Infamous Second Son (Because I own Infamous First Light already – haven’t played either one yet, but they both look really interesting).
  • Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons (Because…. cuteness).

To make things better, I listed about 15 games on eBay, including a crap ton of old Assassins Creed games that I bought and never got around to playing. I love the newest rendition in this series, but everyone who grew up playing them says this one is the best, so I’m not sure playing them retroactively would really be the best use of my time. I’m sure if I had played them when they first came out, I would’ve loved them, but going back now to older technology would probably just be really frustrating.

Day 7 – Moving Plans

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Wow, so much has happened since I last blogged! I had been tentatively planning to move to Albuquerque in few months, mainly for a better cost of living (we’re living in Los Angeles now). I’m a web designer for a marketing firm, so figured working remotely would work really well. Albuquerque rents and a Los Angeles salary are a good combination!

However, I found out on Monday from the H.R. Department that working remotely will not be an option, so that put a kink in my plans. My parents and I have been sharing a place here, and they still plan on moving. Without them covering half the rent, I’ll need to re-think my housing options. It’s so weird here, for the cost of one “cheap” apartment in L.A., you could rent two or three apartments in most other places in the country. I don’t know how anyone affords to live here. It’s a little nuts.

Long story short, I’m aiming to be in a new place by end of January! I likely will need to either find a roommate (last case scenario) or relocate to a cheaper suburb (with hopefully not too much crime). I’m sure you’ll hear more about it as this unfolds!


Speaking of video games…

I kind of already might want to amend my buying-fast rules. (I lasted a week! Woot!!) In looking through the upcoming games list, I just don’t know how I’ll be able to resist some of them.

So…

I think a new set of rules might be called for:

  • It’s allowed to sell a PS3 game and re-buy the same title for PS4.
  • It’s allowed to buy the next in a series IF (and only if) I’ve played everything in that series (provided I already own the other titles) up to that newest title.
  • It’s allowed to buy a brand new game – outside of the above rules – IF (and only if) I finish another one that I already own.

So in other words. If I ever get around to finishing (and by finishing I mean starting) the Uncharted series, then I can get the 4th one this year when it comes out. Same with season 3 of the Telltale Walking Dead game (I’m most of the way through season one right now). Beyond Two Souls has been updated for PS4 to include a chronological version, so if I sell my PS3 copy, I can get that. This also allows for getting all the Sims 4 updates that are sure to come out this year. Hehehe….


What do you think?

Are my new rules cheating? Or are they keeping in the spirit of my goals to play through what I own?

Day 3 – Free Books & Lifetime Movies

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I remember when I was a kid, always wanting to be the last one awake at a slumber party. Not because I thought anything bad would happen, but because I didn’t want to miss out on anything good, even if it was just listening to the other girls gossip about which boy was cute.

I think in a way, my constantly scanning for new books, movies, and games is an adult version of the same concept. I don’t want to miss out on the next exciting story.

Which… I suppose is a little bit weird, considering that stories can be easily consumed after-the-fact.

Although there is definitely something intoxicating about riding the wave as it’s happening. Waiting with everyone else for the next Harry Potter book, or discussing with people between seasons about what Lost really is all about. It’s this collective experience that we experience alone.

If that makes any sense.


In other news, I started browsing the Kindle free books today. Does it count as buying stuff if it’s free?

There are quite a few first-in-series especially, that are just discounted momentarily to get you hooked. Most are not at all popular books, so we’ll see if they’re any good.

It actually kind of reminded me of the days that I didn’t have access to every book in the world (because I grew up in the 80’s before Amazon and Google were a thing). Instead I just picked whichever book looked interesting on the shelves of my small town library. There’s something oddly calming about having so little books to choose from.


I was also browsing my already-purchased iTunes library today and realized I had a bunch of Lifetime movies that I hadn’t watched. I watched one today called Stockholm Pennsylvania, which turned out to be extremely creepy. I’ll probably do a review of it later this week.

Still it was cool to feel like I might as well watch these random tv movies because… why not? I have the time. I don’t need to be watching the newest thing. Plus I already own it.


Is it weird that I feel both calmed by the lack of choice I’m forcing myself into and at the same time slightly afraid I’ll miss something really awesome in the coming months?

Day 2 – Maybe I’ll Just Watch Final Fantasy Cut-Scenes

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I was cataloguing the books, movies, and games I’ve purchased recently. It kind of amazes me how much I’ve collected, just in the last couple months alone. On the one hand, I’m grateful to have a job that finally affords me to buy cool stuff. On the other hand, I wonder sometimes if I’m turning into a hoarder. Not really, but….

It kind of freaks me out a little to think about not acquiring any more for a year. I know that sounds weird. It’s almost like I’ve gone into prison and have to rely solely on what I’ve brought in with me (if prisoners could bring stuff in with them). In a small way, it actually sounds fun. Promising, even. The space and permission to actually relax and take in all the stuff I’ve collected.

Maybe that’s what it’s been about for me. Growing up poor, I was never really able to just buy stuff when it looked good or sounded intriguing. Maybe that’s what I’ve been over-compensating for?

Or maybe I’m just over-thinking this.


Confessions:

I was this close to buying all the current Final Fantasy games today (PS3 and newer). I’ve never played them and the art style has always called to me. Instead, I watched a good hour of gameplay on YouTube and realized I had no patience for Pokemon-style fighting every 10 minutes.

The story however… that is something that intrigues me. The cut scenes were very compelling (at least what I’ve watched so far), and way more interesting than playing through a click-click-choose-this-weapon style of game.

That’s why YouTube is so awesome…. there are actually uploads of entire games’ cut-scenes! Movie-style. While I would never watch that much of a game I intend to play some day, I would totally watch all the cut-scenes of a game I would probably hate the game-play of. So… yeah… add that to my list of cool stuff I get to do this year of no buying stuff.

 

First Impressions: Jessica Jones

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This week I’ve been watching Jessica Jones on Netflix. I hadn’t even really seen it advertised before it appeared on the front page of Netflix, but the art style of the cover intrigued me and the first episode sucked me in. I’m 9 episodes deep now and it’s seriously blowing my mind. This show is so good.

Part noir, part superhero, part just really good drama, this show is very addicting, very interesting, and best of all, created by Netflix, which means I can binge-watch it. (When will the rest of the networks wake up and realize this is the best way to guarantee die-hard fans?).


Recommended For:

Adults who favor a long-arc mystery drama. Technically this is a Marvel property, but bares little resemblance to any other super-hero movie or show I’ve seen. I’d actually liken it closer to Walking Dead, as an example of an absolutely stunning work of dramatic television stemming from a comic book series.


Content Warnings:

This is an MA-rated show.

Violence: Moderate amount. Not in every episode, but when it’s there, it can be quite bloody and / or cold-hearted.

Scary Factor: None really. It’s more of a mystery than a thriller.

Sex / Nudity: Some sex, but zero nudity so far. Definitely intended for mature audiences though.

Language: Quite a bit of language. Not the worst I’ve heard, but they don’t shy away from it.

First Impressions: Fallout 4

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So far, I am loving this game. I originally dismissed it because I thought it was a first-person-shooter, a genre I tend to find really boring. But when I learned that it was more of an RPG survival post-apocalyptic sandbox game, I had to try it.

I bought it last weekend and have “only” played about 12 hours so far. Considering the game has only been out 2 weeks total, that may sound like a lot, but I know of people who have already put in a good 80-100 hours already. Comparatively speaking, I’m still quite early on in this game.


Gameplay:

Basically this is a survival, adventure, stealth game with occasional shooting. But it’s very sandbox-y, so you could totally play it as an FPS if you really wanted to. It also has a shelter-building feature which reminds me a bit of Minecraft in this post-apocalyptic setting. Which is a very very cool aspect of this game for me.


My Thoughts So Far:

I’ve only played a couple missions and have just started on my first shelter, but so far I really like the world of this game. It hits a lot of beats for me as far as what I tend to look for in games: survival horror, crafting, building, open-world, first-person perspective, atmospheric art style.

I’m trying not to think about just how open and non-linear this game is, though. While I like that aspect, it can also be overwhelming, just in terms of figuring out what to do next.

I’ve never played a huge game like this before, so it’s taking some getting used to. Traditionally, I’ve only played games that are either strictly sandbox, with zero storyline (like Minecraft or Sims), or 10-12 hour games that are all storyline (like Until Dawn or Beyond: Two Souls). So having a sandbox game that has a storyline, missions, and an end-game goal is quite different for me, but still really cool. I think I’ll definitely have to try more of this style in the future.


Recommended For:

Just about any older teen or adult who enjoys games. There are a lot of ways to play this game, so you can really make it what you want.


Content Warnings:

This is an M-rated game.

Violence: Mild violence. Occasional gore / close-ups of killings. Killing is very much allowed in the game, but is not really a main element in the gameplay unless you want it to be.

Scary Factor: Mildly creepy bugs / animals in some parts. No real jump scares. Not really a scary game, per say, but occasionally a bad guy can sneak attack you, which could be considered scary.

Sex / Nudity: No nudity or sex that I’ve seen so far. It is possible to see your character in just his / her underwear, though not really a recommended way to play the game, since you need armor to survive any attacks you might get.

Language: Mild language. I haven’t noticed it much at all, to be honest. I think there are occasional bad words, but it definitely isn’t an f-bomb factory.

To Buy: Lyne – iOS Game

For no particular reason, other than I heard about this game yesterday and forgot to buy it before my ban started, I’m putting this first on my list to buy after the ban.

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It looks like the perfect iOS game, mesmerizing yet simple. The kind I could totally lose hours zoning out to.

I was totally going to buy it yesterday too, which I’m now kicking myself for not doing. But… tis the season to be thankful for what I already have, right?