Dude’s Chronicles 4-26-2015: Getting Back To It

wp-2yearsThis was just going to be another post but when I logged into Word Press there was an unexpected notification…Apparently I’ve been doing this for two years. It doesn’t feel like it and at times I’ve slacked off but I’ve always come back. This also means I’ve been contributing at What’s Your Tag? for about a year. Whether you’ve been following my work the entire time or this is the first post of mine you have read, thank you.

Small-soldiers-1-1024With bowling over, there is a hole in my schedule. Golfing might help with that but I hold no enthusiasm for that sport anymore. Perhaps with the extra time I can finally finish watching Daredevil on Netflix. I watched the second episode of that show and it is keeping my interest and. Time didn’t get set aside for that series but I did have time to watch an old movie that I haven’t seen in years, Small Soldiers. If you are not familiar with this movie don’t be surprised. It was supposed to be a lot bigger than it was and did not have the success that was anticipated. Watching it years later, I amazed at the talent that was in this movie. They didn’t all have large rolls and some were voice only rolls. Here is the short list:

  • Kirsten Dunst
  • Tommy Lee Jones
  • David Cross
  • Jay Mohr
  • Dennis Leary
  • Phil Hartman
  • Ernest Borgnine
  • Jim Brown
  • Michael McKean
  • Harry Shearer
  • Sarah Michelle Gellar
  • Christina Ricci
  • Cheri Oteri

There are few others that you may not know there names but you know you’ve seen them before. I won’t lie and tell you this is a great movie or should have been the blockbuster that it was intended to be. It is still watchable all these years later. Give it a watch if you have access to it.

Neverwinter-1-620x350Neverwinter has put me at my wits end. The framerate problems and jittery screens are the least of my woes. I thought I could avoid most of the issues by not playing on the weekends but it seems that I’m having issues even during the week. Battlefield fans are familiar with “rubber-banding”, the problem were you will stop momentarily and then instantly be at another point of the map, this is happening all to often to me in Neverwinter. There was also the issue of joining a dungeon, being put into, getting kicked, being offered the same dungeon group, being put in, getting kicked, etc. This process repeated and the only remedy was to decline then re-queue myself all over again. If this had only happened once, I would write it off but it seems to happen time and again on dungeons and skirmishes.

Beyond the technical issues, I think I am not enjoying the game anymore. The combat is not interesting to me and I feel like even lower leveled enemies are getting the better of my. Since I am not an expert at these types of games, I am wiling to admit that my play style is probably part of the issue. Even with that, I just don’t feel like I’m enjoying it or want to continue.

The other thing that got to me is the in-game purchases available. Yes, you can play nearly all of the game without ever investing any money into the game. If you do pay some, you can unlock some nice items and make life easier on yourself. What got to me was when I went to upgrade my companion only to find out the charge was outrageous. The companion I have currently stops leveling at fifteen but can be upgraded to level up further. However, the charge to do so is 300,000 Astral Diamonds, which are one of the currencies in the game. The problem is that the ways to earn Astral Diamonds are very limited and you are limited to how many you can earn in a day. I understand the need to throttle these in order to keep balances in the game but it is clearly more of a posture to get people to spend money because the same Astral Diamonds can be purchased without limit. The only limit to your purchases is your wallet. You have to use real money to buy Zen which can be used in the game to make many purchases, including Astral Diamonds.

I’m a big fan of free games but I’m not a fan at all of some of the in-game purchase methods. I question what would have been included in Neverwinter if it had been sold as a boxed game for $60. We’ll never know for sure but perhaps it is just one example of how games are being offered nowadays with publishes and develops constantly trying to find new revenue streams without outright raising prices.

Featured Image -- 3034So what’s my solution? Destiny. As much as I hate the game I also love it. It has great graphics and the shooter mechanics are incredible. Granted that the loot system is still a tragic mess and I completely admit that. The House of Wolves was given a release date and some details were laid out. This was something that made me interested in the game again. Bungie is trying to correct some of the things they did wrong with The Dark Below and it is to early to tell if it will be enough. I am now multi-platform with they game as well. After we talked about it on last week’s What’s Your Tag? podcast, I went and purchased it for the Xbox One. In less than a week I already have a level 27 warlock. Not only that, I have started playing on my PS4 again as well. So if I have anybody to blame for this it is Brad.

If I could find a few regulars to play Destiny, I think I would like it even better. Having people you enjoy playing with makes any game more enjoyable. See you out there guardians!


Bio Card Paul

Paul Novak is a self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing in the west side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet. Found here at What’s Your Tag? and on the Twitter @dudewantshisrug. Game on with Team XBRO!


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