Schisms And Prisons

In what may turn out to be a terrible mistake, I have decided to split the blog up into three blogs, each dedicated to a specific category:
  1. Gaming - What you are seeing here, basically me talking about things that should interest gamers.
  2. Game development - I have been dabbling with rolling my own.  Talk about that goes there.
  3. Real life - The most horrible thing ever.
So, good news everyone!  The latter two won't be seen here anymore.  Gaming Stuff, GO!

[Edit 2/3/17: Nevermind.  I hardly have enough time to update one blog, let alone three.  Those other two were deleted just now.]

1. The realities of owning a pair of Sennhouser G4me One PC headphones.

I bought a set of headphones hoping to get accuracy of audio, expecting to be blown away by just how good it sounds.  What I ended up with was a set of headphones that very accurately produced sound.  I am not complaining about having accurate sound, but my expectation I would be blown away has been replaced by the reality of things being just as they should be instead.
There is power in being able to hear things as they are.  For example, a few interesting things noticed with these headphones that I did not notice with my last set of comparably-priced Razer Kraken Forged:
  • When I was piloting my Python in Elite: Dangerous, I thought perhaps the left audio channel was weaker than the right one.  Then I noticed that I was actually sitting slightly on the left side of my ship, so it was understandable that the sound coming from the engines in the center would be slightly louder on right side.
  • There is noticeably nasty audio cropping going on in the "splash" noise produced when walking through liquid in Caves of Qud.
I found I can turn to using the SBX Pro Studio features of my sound card to deliberately produce some larger-than-life effects.  But, that said, I am very much glad that I am getting a highly accurate signal from my card.

2. Grinding In Dragon Quest VIII For The 3DS Continues!

Well, as far as being a traditional Japanese RPG goes, this game certainly is one of the finer examples of sticking with an existing game concept and just buffing it until it shines and feels like velvet to the touch.
The original cast in action figure form.
But it is a grind?  Afraid so.  Every leg of the journey in the game, you have to complete about 20-50 fights in order to get enough experience points to complete the next one.  I will be forgiving a say that the grind could have been a lot worse, and it certainly is not "Korean MMORPG" levels of grind.

I just reached the point in the game where Jessica joins the party, and she's somewhat distractingly sexualized.  Mild but deliberately evident boob physics.  Using a whip for a primary weapon.  Other NPCs commenting on her sex appeal.  A literal "sex appeal" skill to level up that unlocks skills mostly used to dumbfound foes.  A variety of outfits to unlock for increasing levels of undress.  It is not as bad as Bayonetta, but it is so exaggerated that I think the developers may be joking.

This is just one of the many ways the game jokes, and it does help to keep things fun.  Despite the grind and dated mechanics, I will probably continue to play it.

3. Enter The Gungeon purchased!

I have been watching a lot of videos by NorthernLion about this game, and I have to say that it is one of the better ones to follow in Binding Of Isaac's footsteps.
Now that I, too, have purchased it, I can see why it's awfully hard to stay alive.   The game drops health replenishment items quite rarely, yet the bullet barrages coming at you can be very unpredictable because the enemies spawn in wholly random places and (until you get to know them) you will not know exactly how they will attack you.  I have the tools to deal with this, both a dodge roll (animation with invulnerability frames) and "blanks" (limited use charges that remove all bullets on the field), but it is very tricky to know when it is necessary to use them. 

All of these things can be mastered, which is something I really enjoy about an action game like this.  Further, it is a game that can easily be played in small doses, with a run through the Gungeon lasting under an hour if you are successful, and a much smaller fraction of that in the more common event that you are not.

Particularly noteworthy is the staggering amount of guns you can unlock in this game.  There are hundreds.  You find these at random in each Gungeon run, and this introduces an added challenge in that you have to make do with what you have.

As with Binding of Isaac, I highly recommend staying away from the wiki so you can enjoy uncovering the secrets of the game for yourself.  I regret what little I spoiled for myself already.

Well, that's it for this entry.  Today, I updated all three blogs in one day.  Judging by the lack of energy I have now, I am thinking it would be wiser to choose a day to update each.

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