Here, you'll find up to 20 of the most recent posts from the people I follow. Only public results gleaned from the last 200 overall posts to HG Blogs will be displayed. If you see no results below, that means I'm not following a lot of people, or the people I'm following haven't been active in a long while, or they simply aren't sharing their posts.
|Is it still fair to expect games to make the sort of impact they once did on our lives?|
I'm sort of going somewhere with this, but before I get to that dubious destination, please humor me as I make one of the most obvious statements in the history of obvious statements: there are a lot more video games available in 2020 than there were in 1990.
Why make such an obvious statement? For starters, I made it because I think it's easy to forget. We look at all the great games coming out these days, and sometimes the temptation is to say something like "They sure don't make 'em like they used to," which is based on a few factors but largely--to my mind--is based on the difficulty developers now have making an impact. Not a lot of new games, even some very good new games, can keep us talking about them even as little as three months after their release.
|Forgotten No More|
Some time ago now, I abandoned traditional writing apps like Word and now do most of my work directly into Google Drive, which has most of the same tools, lets me access it from anywhere and hard saves my work because I have an annoying habit of losing it to rebellious PCs and my inability to save stuff correctly. Itís worked out pretty well for me, but it does have a darkside; every now and then, Iíll find something that I started working on many moons ago that I had abandoned or forgotten. Sometimes, I have zero reason for this. The best example I have is for a review I wrote for a game called Residue. It was made by a little indie dev who made an interesting little horror game previously, so I picked this up more or less on day 1, promptly wrote a review and then forgot it existed f
|My life is going through a big change, and not just because of COVID-19.|
HonestGamers headquarters is moving again. By that, I mean that I myself am moving again. And since the site kind of goes where I go, so too are the site's headquarters. I have lived on the Oregon Coast for most of these last 15 years, after moving here from Central Oregon. Now I am moving elsewhere in Oregon.
|Since my review went live, the game has changed for the better.|
Pure Mahjong released on Nintendo Switch in July of this year, and I posted my review for it a few weeks later. It was not a favorable review because, although I liked some of what the game did, there was a lot about it I simply didn't enjoy. You can check out the review itself for more information about that.
|A look at what I'm doing and plan to do around the site and such.|
I have been pretty busy lately, and I haven't posted to my blog to keep you all updated on what I'm doing to fill my time. Part of that silence comes from a desire to surprise you with improvements I know you'll like. I enjoy working my tail off on something, then revealing it so it has the most exciting result. But I can see where the silence might also be interpreted as a sign I don't care, or that I am busy doing stuff elsewhere and don't have time of the site. Neither of those things is even remotely true, and so here is an update.
|TLDR; the site is chugging right along, but I am looking for ways to make things better still and I welcome your feedback.|
It feels like a reasonable amount of time has passed since my last update on the State of the Site, so I figured I would go ahead and post another one tonight. I'll try to keep it brief, but as you know if you've been around the site for a long while that I tend to fail at that particular objective once I undertake it. Like... almost every time.
This post will discuss the site's current traffic levels, revenue, what that means at present and what I plan to do about it in the future. Some of this information isn't the sort of thing a site would share in public, but then, we're not a typical site.
First up, let's talk traffic. I looked up results on Google Analytics, and here is how we did in April of this year:
* 12,743 unique users
* 17,833 sessions
|Here are some general thoughts on why we write and who we write for...|
Why do we write? Who do we write for? When should we listen to criticism and when should we ignore it?
The above three questions chase writers their whole lives, and the answers will almost certainly change over time and in different circumstances. I thought it was maybe worth addressing them here at HonestGamers, where we are a community of writers and gamers. Careful self-examination can help us to improve as writers.
Of course, a good rule with all writing is that no one can tell you exactly how to write. No one should even try. So this post isn't an attempt on my part to say "Write like this." Rather, it is a post intended to prompt thought specifically on the three questions I mentioned at the onset.
|Google hopes to change the way people play games, but I say it's a little early to embrace that vision.|
Today at the Game Developers Conference, Google revealed (some of) its plans for an entry into the console market, if you want to call it that. For some time now, rumors were reporting that Google would reveal a streaming console, and that's about what it did. Called "Stadia," the platform appears right now to be more virtual than physical. Its primary draw is that you'll be able to play games on a range of devices, from your phone to a weak laptop or desktop, using controllers that suit you or the new one Google unveiled.
|A list of (currently) 34 games I'll use as a starting point while finishing my effort to collect physical 3DS releases that interest me.|
Did you know that the 3DS is basically done at this point? The stream of releases has long since slowed to a trickle, and the only big retail release confirmed as definitely still coming to the platform this year is Persona Q2 in a few months.
I've been fortunate, in that I've mostly been able to buy the games I wanted for the system as they released, but there are always a few that slip through the cracks. I'm posting this list for my own personal reference, because it's easy to check as I'm out and about and potentially shopping for games, or if I want to go on a semi-organized buying spree on eBay or the like.
Here's my list:
01. Batman: Arkham Origins - Blackgate
Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker (obtained)
03. Conception II: Children of the Seven Stars
|Game Freak, you (don't) got some 'splainin to do!|
When I finished watching the Nintendo Direct that Nintendo broadcast on YouTube early yesterday morning, my first reaction most decidedly was not "Well, this will get a lot of folks up in arms!" I was too excited, a grin plastered across my dopey face. I couldn't remember when I had been more thrilled at the thought that in less than 10 months, I'll get to play a new Pokemon game.
|Iíve been too ill for this crap.|
I came into February at the end of a pretty productive run, but still with a lot on my plate. The new ToeJam & Earl releases at the end of the month; Sunless Skies was a late hour edition to my pile, as was Re-Legion. My plan was to buckle the hell down, focus everything on those and give myself a little bubble where I can catch up on side projects and be shiny clear just in case SEGA drop another Yakuza review code that will probably take over my life. The latter absolutely happened. The former did not. Because I got ridiculously ill.
|Nintendo needs to show more respect for the games it lets you purchase.|
I have no personal interest in getting a tattoo, for numerous reasons including the fact I am a wuss and hate needles, but I have occasionally wondered what image I might have printed on my body if I were to make an exception. I believe I've finally narrowed it down to a 1up mushroom or (just to be ironic and amuse myself) an invincibility star. You can see what those two things have in common: Nintendo. I'm a huge fan, and so this is probably the most "anti-Nintendo" post you'll ever see me write. But I have a reason.
|Because Marc says if I donít do one of these too, heíll hex me with a Canadian curse.|
|I feel like it's time to update you all on what all I'm doing with my time, both on and off the site.|
For the last month or so, I have been without regular work. This is a condition that was unexpected, but necessary, and I hope it will persist. That is, I hope it will persist on my terms.
For a year almost to the day, I was working as a cashier at Walmart. That job may have helped pay the rent, but it was detrimental to my health in ways I didn't even realize until finally the stress became too much and I had to quit one morning instead of starting my shift. Within days, several physical symptoms that I had been fighting cleared up or severely diminished, so that now I am feeling much healthier in general (though not without facing some lingering effects related to the stress).
My dad was out of rehab, following his surgery two weeks ago, and was enjoying the leisurely life back home. But something--possibly doing dishes as recommended for therapy, though that is uncertain at this point--has caused his fusion to slip, which requires another serious surgery which may happen tonight or tomorrow depending on surgeon availability. I am traveling once more to be with my mom and dad at this time, and will again be mostly unresponsive and unproductive on the site for another little while (actual length of time to be determined). Thank you for your understanding!
|Sorry if Iím not responsive for a few days.|
I am typing this post on my phone, in a hospital waiting room halfway across the state from my apartment. So I will keep it brief...
While fighting Oregon wildfires on farmland where he works (or adjacent to it), my dad was driving a Caterpillar vehicle. It got caught on an embankment of some sort and rolled over. My dad was in the cab and avoided being crushed but was still seriously injured. He is scheduled for surgery tonight on his spinal column, but that may be pushed back some and maybe even until tomorrow.
|Fighting through the crashes|
I want so hard to love Yakuza 0 now it's got a very fairly priced PC release, but it actively fights me every step of the way. For one, it's buggy as hell. You have to actively trick it just to get the bloody thing running.
I installed it, and it crashed seconds later. Uninstalled, ran it, same thing. Tried numerous fixes and eventually got it to boot up by unplugging my gamepad. Second loading screen say "Real Yakuza uses gamepads"
|Still hanging onto the illusion that this was a good idea.|
The best version of this game until the next one was made.
A bad clone of a Mario Kart clove populated by mascots you probably never knew existed.
A thinking man's action platformer made by Blizzard before they took over the world via MMO.
Why the hell did Digital Pictures release this awful game three bloody times?
Updated a generic female sprite from the original Japanese release so that she was, instead, constantly on fire for exactly no reason.
The most expensive bad time you can have this side of buying a Nottingham Forest season ticket.
Better than the 3DO port and maybe the awful SNES one.
|Capcom may have just stumbled upon the absolute worst possible way to bring Mega Man to Nintendo Switch.|
I can tell I'm not going to be able to move on with my day until I compose a blog post on this topic, because I'm simply too angry to let the rage fester inside my head, so here goes: Capcom has announced a physical release for Megaman Legacy Collection + Megaman Legacy Collection 2 on the Nintendo Switch. The compilation will retail for $39.99 MSRP, and will be shipped on a single cartridge. It will release this May in North America. Included on the cartridge is Megaman Legacy Collection, plus buyers will receive a key they can use to tie Megaman Legacy Collection 2 to their Nintendo account and download it onto their system memory or an XD card. There are notifications to that effect on the front of the box.
|No game is perfect. Everyone knows that. So... 9 out of 10!|
Objectively, no game is perfect. You know it and I know it.
When a critic reviews a game, sometimes you'll see an accompanying score of 10/10 (or 5/5 in this site's case; there are all sorts of scale). Some readers will call this the "perfect 10," but that's a misnomer. No game is perfect, remember?
Why do some critics award 10/10 when clearly there's no such thing as a perfect game? Why do some critics balk at the notion. I worked briefly at an outlet where critics weren't allowed to award 10/10 scores, because games can't be perfect.