The progress thing which I've forgotten to do for ages.
May 06, 2022

Let's see. There was the attempt at Nioh which is on hiatus. I'd say potentially permanent hiatus, if not for the fact I've purchased its DLC and that means it's a bit too much money invested for me to just give up. I loved it initially, but as time went on, I found it to be repetitive with a lot of side quest missions that just weren't fun at all. I didn't like how, every time you went to a new land, you had to start collecting Kodama again in order to heal more that 3 times for free before needing to burn through your stock. The boss fights tended to annoy me -- I think the last handful I fought (Giant Toad, Ogress and Okatsu) were all road blocks for some time (at least the first two; Okatsu wasn't that bad) and whatshisname in the burning building level was no better. I love FROM's stuff, but this Souls-like from another company just didn't consistently live up to the standard. I'd have days where I was having a lot of fun and other days where it was misery to grind through something or other.

In other stuff I'm playing, although very little right now:

I'm near the end of Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night. In the Behemoth area you access after beating Gebel in a way that unlocks the true ending stuff. A really fun game that lives up to the Symphony off the Night standard. Doesn't necessarily beat it, as it is essentially Iga playing the hits, but even if it's derivative of his earlier work, that still means its better than most stuff out there.

In Fairy Fencer F: Advent Dark Force, I'm near the end of the Goddess Path. Finish this final dungeon and I'll just have to *checks notes* do New Game + twice to play through the Vile God and Evil Goddess paths. And then not play another Compile Hearts RPG for some time. I like this game, but it is essentially the same engine and battle system as Megadimension Neptunia VII, so there is a bit of a diminishing returns thing going on for me. I also started and am in the very early stages of inFamous -- mainly doing quick side-quests in the first area of the city. Also am late in the 22nd level of Doom 2 .wad Memento Mori II. Took a little while to really get into this one, but most of the last few levels have been great. Large and grueling with tough enemies and good traps. L22 has nearly 200 enemies and just has that "everything you do will be against tons of opposition" vibe.

But for the past couple weeks, it's been all about Elden Ring. The PS4 port, but whatever. Background graphics might not be as vivid and the load times might be longer, but it's about as pretty as a game as I've played.

All I can say is that it's super-rare that I get hooked on a game to the detriment of anything else I might be playing. And since I've bought this one and received it on Saturday, April 23, I've only played Fairy Fencer F and Bloodstained once, finished a couple ROM titles and touched on MM II a few times late at night before bed.

Put in about 40 hours so far and have done most stuff in Limgrave and started exploring the Liurnia region. It's a super-fun game to explore and, unlike Nioh,it is hitting all the right notes for me. Didn't take me long (approximately my first time attempting the Stormgate and fleeing like a coward from the big Troll) to decide it's wise to explore everywhere possible before doing anything ambitious like follow the plot. Just in Limgrave, you can find great stuff. Like the Lhutei the Headless summon ash. Or the Bloodhound Curved Greatsword.

And then get an inflated sense of ego because stuff like that carried you past Margit and Godrick and you're thinking you're great because you beat two bosses considered tough on the first try. While ignoring how it took 4-5 attempts to beat the Banished Knight enemy in the one room where you get locked in with it. And then you try your hand at the Stormhill Evergaol and watch the Crucible Knight tear you limb from limb, likely trash-talking you about how you're not all that now that you have to fight without summons backing you up.

So that chap will wait for a bit. As will the Red Phantom that invades you if you jump off the Roundtable Hold balcony, the dragon on the lake, the Night Cavalry on the bridge that I found and pretty much all of that Caelid area, as when I walked into it, it took 5-6 hits to kill a basic zombie-looking guy and, man, I didn't like the looks of that big-ass bird that was nearby. And when I took the teleport to the Bestial Sanctuary, well, I don't know what the hell that giant thing outside the door is, but when I realized it was a living thing I could lock on to, I decided I didn't want to explore outside of that place.

Meanwhile, I'm trying to explore Liurnia and finding all sorts of things that can stomp my skull in there, also. The tiny cemetery area with a large skeleton with a battle axe that's way more durable and strong than any other skeleton I've face. The Fire Monks in and around a little camp. The ghostly blue troll that's quicker and more aggressive than regular ones and also casts a pretty strong spell. And those annoying little midgets that use smoke bombs and stuff to get the drop on you.

Anyway, this game is my life. And that's that for that.

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