This weekend was on the odd side of things. First we had an issue at work that kept me there until after 7 pm on Friday night, so by the time I got home and found food… it mostly felt like I didn’t get an evening. Saturday things were going mostly smoothly until the Podcast when apparently my system started having technical difficulties. During the last fifteen minute of the show the last word of pretty much every sentence was getting cut off. A restart of the server seemed to solve it later, but it made for a frustrating experience for myself and I am sure our listeners. Lastly Sunday morning I was going about my normal routine and wound up getting stranded after popping into QuikTrip for Drinks… and finding out my vehicle wouldn’t start. So I had to wait in the 30 degree weather on AAA to come do service.
I mean in theory I could have probably convinced someone to give a jump start and I had cables… but I mostly waited the hour or so in the cold in the off case that it was something other than the battery and I would need a tow to a shop. What makes this doubly frustrating is that I had just replaced the battery on Labor Day weekend, and something similar prevented us from going to Dallas. By all guesstimations… we are just assuming that I got a lemon of a battery because the rest of the systems check out fine. Thankfully it was still under warranty, but it also made for a very stressful and frustrating day. This morning I am remembering that there was one more thing on the list from the grocery store that we did not pick up yesterday… and am drinking my coffee without sugar (or splenda in my case). I hope this trend does not continue into the new week.
I am however thankfully scheduled to be off Friday, so that I can at least feel like I am getting to participate in Pax South by hanging out at home and watching the streams. For the last two years the timing has been off, with the show effectively happening one week too soon for me to be able to go to it. I’ve largely resigned myself to this fact, but it still bums me out more than a little bit to miss it seeing as I went to the first three shows. Instead I’ve decided to make a batch of Chilli that day and hang out and watch the stream and pretend to be part of it. I’m also contemplating finally using it as an opportunity to start sorting my Magic the Gathering cards which are right now in no semblance of an order. I always have a bunch of projects that I need to do… but regularly get distracted and take forever to actually get around to doing them.
As far as gaming goes… on a whim I decided to look into Breach as several of my friends have been talking about it. I am not sure if there was some sort of a specific event going on, but I signed up on PlayBreach.com and immediately got access to the game. This had not been a title I was following at all, but it appears that they will be entering Steam Early access on January 16th. If you have read my blog for a long while you may know my opinions of Early Access… which is that the game is launching next week no matter how hard they might claim otherwise. The game that is there however is actually rather fun, and I spent some time playing a bunch of different classes. Effectively the game is a weird love child of Overwatch, The Secret World and Heroes of the Storm… with a bit of the Destiny Strikes mixed in for good measure. I realize that is going to sound like an incoherent game, but in truth it works pretty well together.
From Overwatch it borrows the way the narrative of the world is being told through the settings and a general graphical feel and fluidity of motion. From The Secret World it borrows the game setting and a fantasy meets technology universe where the barrier between worlds is failing (and a premise not that dissimilar from the novel I wrote several years back). From Heroes of the Storm it borrows the way you level up throughout the match and choose new traits to help buff your gameplay each time you take an objective. As far as Destiny Strikes… the levels feel a bit like that mixed with some of the objectives like guard the payload that you have in Overwatch.
There is even a bit of Dungeon Keeper as the versus play is asymmetrical where you have a team of four heroes playing against a player that controls an incorporeal demon that can do various things to effect the flow of the game. The demon can summon all sorts of trap and damaging dealing auras, while freely possessing individual “creeps” to use the League of Legends nomenclature and powering them up in the process as well as being able to direct their actions with their own hotbar combat. I personally prefer to play Heroes, but almost every time I have queued for a Versus match I have wound up getting stuck playing the Demon, as it appears to be way less popular than just playing a single character.
Both sides of the equation are rather fun, and you can also opt to play against bot characters if you so choose. It is well worth checking out if you can still get into the game, but I am trying to decide now if it is worth actually buying one of the starter kits that go off sale on the 16th. It is a MOBA like game in its structure, but it appears to be one that is designed more or less for the way I would want to play the game. I spent most of my time playing the Demon Hunter, that sets interesting traps and runs around with a shotgun. They however have a slew of classes already available, and the payment model going forward seems to be much like Riot and that you can try classes for free but have to buy them to unlock permanently with a free assortment available at all times.
Definitely worth looking into if this sounds like your thing. I am curious what my readers think about the game if they have played it as well. My only frustration was that I could not seem to get the game to register with any of my screenshot options… so I am having to go with a shot from the press kit this morning.