Personal

Physical keyboard again!

For the first time in a couple of weeks I finally have a physical keyboard to work with again so I figured I might aswell pump out a blog post. Unfortunately I don’t have any pictures for this one so you’ll just have to do with words.

I’ve had a two week hiatus off work where I settled into my new home and tried to find a new rhythm for life in general. It included a bunch of gaming, watching TV shows and movies and reading books. It also included a lot of anxiety about leaving home, lots of cleaning of the new place and getting adjusted to life on my own. All in all I think I’ve done a decent job so far. The only things I need to work on now are making sure that I eat properly during the evenings and start up my workout schedule again. I have taken the first few babysteps to achieve this by going out for a walk after dinner every night. For now the walks are only about 30 minutes long but I hope to go up to an hour. It’s a great way to digest my food and clear my head, especially now that I’m back at work with all the chaos and stress that accompanies that. I don’t take my phone with me on these walks, just my iPod with some music and my house keys and that’s it. I really hope to expand on this by going to the gym during the weekends but I’m not there yet.

As far as games go. I’ve been spending a lot of my time playing FFXIV. My Carpenter is currently sitting on level 63, my White Mage has gotten a nice weapon and is sitting around ilvl 375. I have collected all the items from the crossover event with FFXV and I’ve picked up finishing off all the ARR relics again. Right now I’m in the middle of the questline on my Warrior and once I finish that I only need Scholar to be done. For now I’m focusing mainly on completing these quests and leveling my crafters. I’m sure my Carpenter will be level 70 before the month is over and I have already started doing Ixal dailies for my Goldsmith which I want to bring to 70 next. For the rest I’m just waiting out my time untill the new expansion launches. I’m planning to level my White Mage first through the story but I’m also really interested in picking up Dancer.
As far as other games go… I’ve made some decent progress in Yoshi’s Crafted World. I have collected 3 out of 5 gems and make sure to get as much collectibles as possible during my first playthrough of a level. Of course I will need to go back to the flipsides to find all the Poochy Pups and collect all the flowers and other things but for now I’m focusing on getting through the worlds and claiming all the gems. I have to say that the level based on a Haunted Mansion is my favourite so far, I’m hoping there is one that can top it.

Against all the deals I made with myself I picked up a new game aswell: Monster Hunter World. I’m really interested in the franchise and I need something to do besides the classic MMO. After messaging Belghast on Twitter whether it would be a good time/deal to pick up the game now I just went ahead and purchased it. I don’t understand most of the systems yet but for now it’s nice to be able to drop into quests that complete fairly fast and see immediate progress as result. I’m sure that things will pick up in difficulty soon but for now I’m enjoying myself and taking a really relaxed approach to the game.

I do notice that I miss my computer in more ways than one. I miss playing WoW and I may want to take another stab at GW2 but unfortunately I won’t have access for another 3 weeks or so. In that time my main gaming will come from my consoles which isn’t too bad considering I can play on a comfy couch while watching a nice big screen now.

In non gaming related news I’ve finally gotten round to watching some films and series. I watched Avengers: Endgame in the theatre two weeks ago, great movie by the way, and I watched The Social Network last weekend. Next to that I’m watching Lucifer on Netflix and of course Game of Thrones. Only one more episode to go and honestly I’m really disappointed with this final season. Everything is super rushed and it feels really underwhelming. I don’t agree with all the story line endings and I really hope that if the books ever get finished they’ll be better than this hot mess.

All in all it’s been a very busy couple of weeks and being back at work where it’s just a gigantic chaos isn’t really making anything much better.

Vacation moods

Seeing as I’m not near a pc and thus a physical keyboard for at least another week I am once again typing up this post on my tablet. So again I am probably going to keep it relatively short.

I have had the first week of my vacation fly by. I’ve gotten a lot of things done and feel like I am slowly settling into my new home. Right now I am spending a lot of time cleaning and buying all the stuff that I come across that I lack. I have mentioned it on Twitter but my house is super dusty and I am vacuuming almost every day because of it.

In gaming land I have been spending a lot of time on FFXIV. I have finished the Hildibrand story line, I have done the FFXV crossover event and bought the car. My carpenter is about to hit level 60 and I have finally gotten my weapon upgrade on my White Mage. I’m also working on getting a full set of 390 gear on that and gearing up my alt classes with the tons of Mendacity tomestones that come with the grind. The few things that still linger are the 24 man raids and finishing off the Omega raid.

I have also been spending a bunch of time playing Yoshi’s Crafted World. I have obtained the second gem and am working  my way to a third. Some of the levels are actually quite challenging, especially when you want to find as much items as possible in your first run through. It’s still fun and I can see myself finishing the main objective in the game this week. After that it kind of becomes a collection game and I wonder how long that will keep my attention.

As for the rest this week… I will be watching the new game of thrones episode tonight and the big Ajax football match later this week. My uncle is coming to visit and I still need to do a ton of cleaning so I think I am set for the rest of the week.

 

Still kicking around

It feels a bit weird, typing this post on my tablet. I just want to get a quick one out though to let you all know that I am still alive and breathing.
I have been extremely busy with moving house and I can say that I have finally moved over past Sunday. Yesterday internet and tv have been installed so I can finally access some stuff again.
I haven’t had time to game that much unfortunately but I have two weeks off right now so I am investing some time in my backlog. I have picked up kingdom hearts 3 again and advanced to Monstropolis. I have tackled more levels in Yoshi’s Crafted World. I’m also working on stuff in FFXIV again but I will save that for a future post.
In any case I’m back on the gaming grid and I hope I can start writing more blog posts again.

A Divided Society

I logged onto my blog today to see I suddenly accumulated a ton of fews over the past two days. Apparently my post about me obtaining the Zodiac Zeta Dragoon weapon was referenced on Reddit and it’s kind of exploded my viewers numbers for two days. It’s a nice surprise to wake up to, considering the subject of the post that I’m actually going to write.

I’ve been walking around with the idea of this post since Wednesday after the results of the latest elections in the Netherlands. Waking up to the latest Final Fantasy XIV keynote and people’s reactions to it all over the internet has spurred me on even more to write down my thoughts on a subject that’s been becoming more and more apparent over the recent years: society is getting more divided and harsher. I find this a very worrisome trend and it fills me with a certain unease in regards to the future. Even though I tend to keep my political and societal views to myself and even though I want to keep this blog more focused on games I felt the need to write a political tinted post. Even if only to get the words out of my head and onto a screen.

I consider myself in the political center when it comes to politics. Dutch politics work a little different than the two party system that a lot of countries worldwide adopt, instead we have a fractured political landscape with 10+ political parties that are scattered from extreme left to extreme right on the political spectrum. I’m sure some of you may have heard of “Geert Wilders”, a well known right politician that is anti-islam or maybe the new rising star “Thierry Baudet” who is on the same side of the spectrum but uses a different angle to get people to vote for him. Especially this latter politician is described as the Dutch version of Trump and for now it seems he has the same “surprise success” factor that Trump had in the US elections a few years ago. On the other side of the spectrum we have the rising stars of the party of “GroenLinks” who identify as being rather extremely left and also very environmentally engaged. They have had their history of extreme left hiccups and, like the parties on the right side of the spectrum, it’s an ideology that I keep myself very far away from. I guess it’s a sign of times and a changing society that these more extreme parties were the winners in our elections on Wednesday. It outlines that our society is getting more harsh and more extreme. The gentle center road with compromises to either side seems to be walked less and less and instead people rally around extreme figures on either side. I don’t think our country has ever been divided this badly and I wonder if it’s a rift that we can somehow heal. Us Dutchies used to be known as being a sober bunch with a clear outlook on the world. We may be considered rude when we tell things how we see them but we are honest and compassionate. Right now though I don’t see these qualities at all anymore. Instead I see a society that is bitter and divided, angry about many things and rallying behind whoever words their woes the best. We don’t want to understand why our neighbour votes the complete opposite of ourselves anymore, instead we condemn eachother and widen the breach, damaging close relationships in the process.

I see the same thing happening in general when I look at online and especially gaming communities. The best example being the decision made by Square Enix to make gender locked races in the new FFXIV expansion. I myself find myself in a position where I wouldn’t have cared either way. I’m happy playing my Miqo’te so the chance of me rerolling to any new race were slim to begin with. A lot of people are enraged though and think this whole gender locking thing is ridiculous. This ofcourse spurs another group to tell them to “stop whining and accept it”. Once again I don’t see that much people voting their neutral opinion. Maybe because they think it’s no use or maybe it’s the people who usually keep their mouth shut and just enjoy/accept what’s coming their way. It still means that the overall tone of debate grows harsher and more people feel unhappy because they feel like they’ve been done an injustice. I feel this has been a long time coming. With the boom of the internet and the ability for people to express their opinons anonymously the overal tone of debate has gotten more toxic. We have gotten more vocal as society, we want to be able to express our opinons and be heard. Social media has made this possible and unfortunately this also means that you get a platform for opinions that people usually kept to themselves because of their content. All in all it’s making the internet an unfriendlier place to be in for all participants, something that is slowly bleeding over into “real” society. As someone who tries to befriend anyone it’s a rather unsettling place to be in. I really hope that at some point we will realize that we are going in a wrong direction in our online and real communities.

I’m no exception to this, we all have things we need to work on. I’m not perfect. I’m unhappy with many things in my life. Some things I can change, some things I can’t. I vocalize some of these things where I probably shouldn’t. It’s a thing I need to work on. I try to be more understanding of people who don’t share my opinions. I try to learn. It’s a bumpy road and it causes friction along the way. Right now though  I just really dislike the intense debate that goes on without people trying to understand the other side of the coin. And I think this lack of understanding may eventually be society’s downfall. I’m just hoping I won’t get to see that in my lifetime.

More Azeroth Adventures

So I’ve spent the majority of my Friday evening and Saturday playing World of Warcraft. Maybe I got spurred on by the fact that I only have a few days remaining on my sub or maybe I just had this urge to play a comfort game. In any case I’ve been running around on my Rogue and my Paladin and have been making a ton of progress in the Battle for Azeroth story.
I’ve now finished up the War Campaign story for both factions including Tides of Vengeance. This means I got to unlock Kul Tiran humans on the Alliance side and I got a shiny mount for finishing the campaign on both Horde and Alliance side. I’m currently less than 250 reputation removed from unlocking Zandalari Trolls so that will be my main focus this weekend. After that I only have the Draenor Orcs left to unlock but I’m in no rush to do so simply because I know I will probably never play said race.

Having said this I’m probably not going to reach the goals for WoW that I initially plotted out at the start of the month. I may be able to get my Mage to level 120 but I won’t have the time to gear up/catch up to current content. The same goes for leveling the Hunter, she’s still sitting somewhere around level 55 so there is no way in hell I’ll be able to get her to 110 before my game time runs out. In theory I could purchase another month of game time, but with my move coming up in three weeks I doubt I’ll have much time to play. It’s simply not worth the money for me to maintain the sub if I can’t play for half of the time that it’s running. So I’m just going to let it run it’s course and get my time’s worth as my remaining sub time counts down to zero.

Going back to me finishing off the War Campaigns (so far) I’m still more enamoured by the whole Alliance part in Battle for Azeroth than I am with the Horde part. Clearly Blizzard is steering towards some sort of schism in the Horde or maybe we will see Sylvanas depart alltogether in the next patch. I don’t know. All I do know is that most of the quests I’m performing are making me rather unhappy to play Horde side story wise. Turning people into Forsaken isn’t the most fun there is and honestly I’m kind of happy that the Alliance seemed to have come out with the upper hand after the Battle of Dazar’Alor. It was interesting to first see the Alliance point of view, how they set up the trap for the Horde in Nazmir and left Blademaster Telaamon behind to lead the decoy army against the Horde while the Alliance attacked Zuldazar directly. I felt a pang of guilt as I killed said Telaamon on my Paladin because I had seen the Alliance side of the story. His sacrifice was not in vain.

Seeing the time that I have left in WoW I probably can’t see all the current content. I may be able to squeeze in the Battle raid on my Paladin because I’m a tank so my queue will probably be fast. I’m probably not going to be able to see the Alliance side of things so I guess I’m going to just put that on hold untill I get my PC set up in my new home. For now my goals in WoW are simple. Unlock Zandalari Trolls. Get my Mage to level 120 (only 3,5 level to go) and maybe take a peek inside the raid on my Paladin as time permits. We’ll see how far I’ve gotten after my sub runs out.

Next to making progress in WoW I’ve also made a ton of progress when it comes to my house. Most of the things have been arranged now so I will have running water, heat and electricity from the day I get my house keys. I’m insured and I’ve ordered all my furniture. If all goes well I should have the majority of my stuff in the week of April 8th. That’s when my furniture will arrive and when I will go shopping for a washer/dryer and a TV. I expect that that first week will mostly be filled with me cleaning the house from top to bottom and slowly moving my non-essential stuff over. So I can start with putting all my stuff in the kitchen, buying things like a mop, vacuum cleaner and other cleaning items. After my furniture gets assembled I can start moving over other non-essential items like my books, towels, winter clothes, games and consoles I don’t currently use. I hope that by that time the internet is working as well so I can test it out with my PS4 and Switch. All in all I hope to have completed my move around the Easter weekend. Obviously not everything is in my control when it comes to this. Seeing as it is a new apartment I will have an inspection on the day that I get my keys. Anything found that needs to be fixed or replaced will need to happen in the weeks after. I really hope that there aren’t any major flaws but you never know. It would really suck to have my careful plans ruined because my windows need to be replaced or some sort of other big fix that needs to happen.

I also can’t believe that I will be standing in my own house in a little less than three weeks. Time really has flown by because I feel like they only started building on site a month ago while it’s been over a year. A lot has happened in that time and I’m more than ready to leave my old living situation behind and embrace the new one. I hope it brings me a fresh start in life which I can use to turn some bad habits into good ones. I’ve taken some time off at the start of May to just enjoy living in my house but also to start working on new routines. I want to regularly visit the gym again and the plan is to start going every day when I’m off work and then tone it down to 3-4 times a week when I do work. It’s a bit of an extreme step but I hope I’m able to build up a good start in those two weeks that I’m off and work from there. My weight has been detrimental to my health for a while now so I need to start shedding it one way or another and working out is a surefire way to get that started. I also want to figure out a new morning routine where I show up at work a little better looking than I do now. I want to wear more make-up and do more stuff with my hair than just simply brushing it. I also need to fix my skincare and oral care routines because I’m noticing that what I’m doing now is not working. And what better time to do that when you’re starting fresh in a new home?

Feeling Detached

I’ve started writing this post multiple times, inside and outside of my mind multiple times. I find it difficult to talk about personal stuff on a gaming blog but it’s my blog and therefore also my choice. I guess talking about why I’m not gaming is also a gaming post right?
Anyway. I’ve been struggling at work a lot the past few months. Ever since we had a reorganization our department has been a mess. Now, about 4-5 months later, people are finally finding their way and calming down a bit but the damage has already been done. Due to the reorganization I suddenly saw my workload skyrocket. Not only did I became responsible for more categories I also suddenly got dragged into way more meetings and projects. Out of my five days of work per week, 2 or 3 were usually comprised of meeting after meeting making it so that my work suffered. I felt like I was constantly not getting done and pushing things off till the next day and I would go home stressed and completely exhausted. The only thing I was holding onto was the fact that I’m moving in April and had requested three weeks off to make that go smoothly and so that I could enjoy my new house in peace. Two weeks ago I got told my request had been denied and instead I would only get one week off… It was my breaking point. I was already exhausted that day, I’d been thinking of calling in sick to work every day that week and something inside me just snapped. I broke down in tears and just couldn’t stop crying. Fortunately for me I have the best colleagues who immediatly came to talk to me and calm me down and gave me time to explain what’s going on. Eventually we worked out that I was simply overworked and teetering on the edge of a burnout. I have since delegated my tasks to a few coworkers and focused on the stuff that really needed to be done. My meetings have been cut down and I feel like I can sort of breathe again even though I’m still seriously exhausted.

In extension of this I’ve felt extremely disconnected from my personal life. I didn’t (and still don’t really) have the energy to do anything as I got home after work. I would just lie on bed playing a silly colour by number app on my phone or reading other people’s blogs or just fall asleep outright. The same was true for the time period after dinner where I would be lying on bed feeling exhausted and sleep or watch an episode of a show on Netflix while battling sleep. All of this has caused me to feel completely detached from gaming in general. I’ve been logging into WoW here and there because it’s comfortable and familiar but otherwise I’ve not been interested in starting up a game at all. I’ve not really touched FFXIV at all except to do the Valentione event. I’ve barely even looked at my Switch and my Playstation. It’s all fallen into “meh, I can’t be arsed” category the last few weeks. Which sucks. Even on the weekend I find myself mostly wanting to sleep and not do anything. It’s really impacted my plans for this month gaming wise and I’m not sure when this state of mind will let up.
On moments like these I can be very jealous of Belghast and Syp who seem to enjoy their hobbies even when life looks a bit more stressful than normal. For me it feels like it’s the first thing I’m dropping when I feel bad and the last thing I can really get back into when I start feeling better again. It doesn’t really help that I need to arrange a ton of stuff for my move still and that’s occupying my mind aswell.

All in all I feel very detached from my normal routines. I log into games only to log out a few minutes later again. I reinstalled Steam, hoping that maybe playing a game on there would help me get back into the groove but I just stared at my library for a solid fifteen minutes and then realized there’s nothing there that I want to be playing. I just don’t really want to think about picking up a new game and learning to play right now yet I also feel like I need to do something to get out of this rut. My brain just feels overexhausted and I’m not sure where to go from here. If I can’t even enjoy my games… I’m not sure how much deeper I can sink away into this gaping maw that is exhaustion and burnout.

Why the move is important

So I’ve been dropping in posts that I’m finally moving out of 29 years of living under my dad’s roof. This move is important to me, more important than it would seem just looking at it normally. I mean, being 29 and living at home still was not what I had in mind for my future and the fact that I’m finally moving out is causing all sorts of thoughts and emotions in me that I’ve not had in years.
To really understand why finally moving out on my own is so important to me I guess I need to tell a bit of the story of my life so prepare for a deeply personal post on this one. There are some trigger warnings here including suicide, parental death and (verbal) abuse.

I am an only child. My mom was a stay at home mother and my father worked full time. My mom was everything to me. She was my primary caretaker and my pillar. My dad was the man I saw at dinner and in the weekends. He’d come to stuff like gym competitions and me getting swim diploma’s but he never really interjected himself in my day to day life. My dad always has had a short temper and would get angry about the most ridiculous stuff. Sometimes this anger was aimed at me for requests a normal innocent childs make that would somehow set him off. He has hit me as a child a few times when my mom couldn’t intervene on time. It’s safe to say the bond with my father was bad.

When I was 12 years old my mother suddenly passed away. One day she was there and the next day I came home to find her dead body in my parents’ bedroom. She’d had a blood clot in her lungs and basically died within minutes of this happening. There was nothing anyone could have done but to teenage me this was non-information. My world was shattered. I had lost the most important person in my life and it still leaves deep scars untill this day. This meant I grew up as teenager with a father who I had no emotional connection to. He hadn’t been physically abusing towards me for years but on an emotional level we could not connect. He took time off after my mother died to grieve but I went back to school and got by on my own. I had very little support and a father who didn’t want to talk about what happened and who still had his temper. This often resulted into getting verbally abused over nothing and me developing deep rooted anxieties towards the man. I’ve been told so many times that he’d knock me into the hospital or throw me out into the streets that I just trained myself to zone out when he’d go on one of his rants. He also believed I was a difficult child (I wasn’t) and that all the issues I had were of my own making thus yelling at me almost every day was somehow justified.
When I was 16 I was diagnosed with PTSD and I attended single therapy aswell as family therapy to sort through the copious amount of issues that existed for me and within the relationship with my father. I wish I could say that this helped matters but unfortunately it didn’t. I learned to deal with the fact that I didn’t have a normal family home and tried to focus on getting my own life in order and focus on school and getting into university. Untill this day I still have issues with talking to my dad openly about things. I feel like if I tell him something he dislikes he will immediatly go into a rage so I rather keep things on the down low. I don’t think we will ever have a normal father/daughter relationship and at this point in life I’ve not tried pursuing such a thing for a long time.

When I was 18 my dad’s current partner came into the picture. I had my first real boyfriend at the time and he was spending more and more time with a woman we’ve known for a long time because she lived next to one of my uncles. Everything seemed okay at the start of their relationship. She was nice/normal towards me and I was happy my dad had found someone again because this meant that he’d focus less on me and leave me alone. I have to say that her coming into his life made my life suddenly much easier and I feel like I’ve had a bit of a restored relationship with my dad from that moment on but it’s still not how it should be.

As I’ve found out throughout my life though things never seem to stay on the up and up. My dad’s partner turned out to be a whole world of trouble on her own. She has some social issues which I’m not sure I can explain but it’s made my life miserable at times. Instead of confronting me about stuff she “disliked” me doing she’d badmouth me to my dad behind my back for years. This resulted in him being angry with me and berating me on how to act “normal” towards her on more than one occassion. This went on, and is still going on, for a long time untill I sat down with him and basically told him that I was done being a “good daughter” for her. She’s not my mother. She has not once showed any real interest in me. I’m tired of trying to be the one to build a “relationship” with her when there’s obviously no interest from her side. The badmouthing still happens but I’ve not been addressed by my dad in a long time. And the things that she would badmouth about are of the category “absurd”. She really does make problems bigger than they are and then becomes a dramaqueen about it for no apparent reason.
One of the best examples I can give of this is one that happened in the last year. I have my own equipment for storing food, they’re glass containers with plastic lids that can go into the fridge but also into the oven. I used one of them to make lasagna with. I’ve had these for a while and the stickers of the brand were still on the sides even though they’re half peeled off. I have no issues with this but to her it looked “stupid”. I shrugged and pointed out they were mine and I didn’t care. For some reason my dad chimed in and eventually I told him to just put the damn thing into hot water to help it peel off. Ten minutes later, I had gone up to my room to relax, my dad comes knocking on my door because he needed me to talk to her because she was upset. She was upset because “when I suggest something you never listen to me but you listen to your dad”. First off, she never suggests.. She bitches. Secondly I don’t have to listen to any of your suggestions when it comes to my stuff. Thirdly what the hell is your problem woman. I told her I had no idea why she was upset about this because it’s simply bullshit. My dad sat inbetween and just let it play out. This is the kind of petty drama filled shit that fills her head apparently and I can’t stand it.

I’ve had to deal with it for 10 years now and I’m just not putting any energy into communication on that part anymore. I let her bitch and I just stare off in another direction untill it’s done and then I talk to my dad. It’s so emotionally exhausting to live with these people. A father who rages at every little thing and a woman who thinks I’m somehow out to get her and makes mountains out of molehills. I try to avoid them as much as I can already while I was plotting my escape. Not getting a job untill I was 26 didn’t really help either but now that I’ve had a steady employment for the past three years and I could finally afford to move out I sprung on the chance to do it. It’s going to be such a relief to not have to deal with this stupid stuff every day anymore.

Not having had a stable home since I was 12. Living with a man who has no control on his temper and who lacks a sincere proficiency for empathy, and a woman who has the attitude of a teenager has had more of an impact on me than my mothers’ death could ever have. I’ve gone through PTSD and a secondary anxiety disorder that was diagnosed later in life. And yet nothing has taken it’s toll on my health more than living at home for as long as I have. I could write so many stories of shitty things that happened over the years. Of the verbal abuse, the bullying, the badmouthing to the point where I had an anxiety attack so bad that I fell and couldn’t get up and my dad was still raging at me. I’ve been made to feel less than human, to feel like I had no right to live, that I was a terrible human being and at some point I really believed the world would be better off without me so I tried to take my own life. Which only elicited more rage from my dad instead of the empathy he was supposed to feel towards his teenaged kid. Untill today I still struggle with suicidal thoughts. They may not be plans or actual ideas to take my own life, but if I were to die in my sleep I’d have no issues with it.

I have made leaps and bounds to improve my life. Finishing my Master’s degree, getting a steady job. I have an uncle who I was able to confide in about all the things that happened in our house and his heart broke for me. I’m no longer a broken person although I’m not where I want to be just yet. But moving out of this toxic household and finally starting a life of my own means more to me than anything else in the world. It feels like I can finally release myself from the shackles this house has put on me and be free of it all.
And maybe, just maybe, I can finally start living a normal life.

Homes, hacks, patches and funerals

As you can deduce from the post title I’ve had a very exhausting week. A lot of things happened that are gaming and IRL related and I need to get it all off my chest.

So let’s start with the good!
I had a look at my new apartment on Wednesday. It’s coming really close to being done at this point. My bathroom is as good as ready, all ceilings are ready, and it’s basically putting in the floor heating, floor, kitchen and painting the walls that needs to be done now. They suspect we can move in sometime during April, which is 5 months earlier than the initial date. I’m stoked! I am finally moving out into a neat little apartment and be a complete adult with my own life. Yay me.
I took lots of pictures and got to know some of the neighbours and it was all around good fun. I can’t wait to move there in a few months and I’m already picking out my furniture and making lists of everything I need to buy. I’ll probably do the same thing my coworker did and just take 3 weeks off to move and get settled in.
One of the things I had on my list I can scratch off because to day I picked up my Playstation Pro and traded in my old one. 4k games here I come!

In mentioning the Playstation I come onto my second subject of the post: hacking. More specifically people piggybacking on an existing Playstation Network account. They basically make use of your PSplus subscription and download the games you’ve bought. Apparently this has happened to me sometime during 2016 seeing as in my 5 year PS4 review FIFA 17 suddenly showed up as one of my top 3 most played games… While I don’t own it. After some digging I figured I’d been the victim of the specific type of hack I just described. There’s never been any purchases on my account that weren’t made by me but now with me getting a new Playstation I’ve taken a ton of measurements to make sure my account is freshly protected. I have had 2-step verification for a while but I specifically went into my Sony account and deactivated all devices, changed my PW and set up a new security question. I also took all payment details off the account. If someone tries anything funny now I’ll notice and hopefully this should keep my account safe for the future. It was kind of a scare to realize my account has been used by someone else but luckily nothing malicious every happened so there’s that.

In the realm of gaming I’ve not been able to put that much time into games this week. My warrior is level 68 in FFXIV and slooowly going towards level 70. I’ve been meaning to pick up the second game of Spyro but really couldn’t be arsed to sit down and play. I’m also aware that patch 8.1 is out in World of Warcraft and honestly I’ve not even been interested in logging on and seeing what Blizzard has added for the patch. I will probably poke my head in somewhere around Christmas because I have a week off then and enough time on my hands to play a few more games than just FFXIV and Spyro. Square Enix released the 4.5 patch site for FFXIV so I guess that’s a thing aswell.

Finally some sad news. I’ve been having a few ill family members, some more serious than others. One of them was one of my aunts who has been fighting a lung disease for most of her life. Unfortunately during Friday night she passed away while being surrounded with loved ones. The funeral should be either coming Friday or Saturday. If it’s Friday I probably won’t be able to make it due to work, Dutch time off around funerals is surprisingly strict and will completely depend on your manager when it comes to funerals of non-immediate family. I hope I can make it so I can say goodbye but I’ll guess I will see once the date for the funeral is set.

Warriors and Spyro

Character shot lvl 60 WAR quest

Progress, progress, progress! Hello again!
I’ve been quiet over the past week, I know, so I figured since it’s now Sunday, and I actually have time to sit down and post, I’d give you all an update about what I’ve been busy with throughout the week.

The above screenshot was taking during the cutscene of the level 60 Warrior quest. I will admit I have been less active on FFXIV the past week and the reason will be given below in a few minutes. However I have been slowly chipping away at my Warrior levels and have landed in the 60-70 territory which means I can pick up Beast Tribe dailies again and Hunts. It also means I have been enriched with a ton of new cool abilities, including Deliverance Stance, and that I can finally wear the set of Shire gear which I’ve purchased specifically for the leveling process.
I’ve been enjoying the tanking on Warrior even though I’m not that good at switching stances yet. I know the whole gimmick of Warrior is to get aggro in Defiance stance and then switch to Deliverance and start dishing out a ton of damage yourself in 4 man dungeons. The damage Warrior actually does is quite surreal for a tank and I’m probably going into full Offtank mode when I get level 60 Alliance roulettes or level 60+ trials. It’s just fun, and satisfying, to see those high numbers while swinging an oversized axe around. Luckily for me I’ve not had to do this leveling process alone, I have a few friends who are slowly coming back to FFXIV and I’m bantering with them on Discord as we run our roulettes. All in all I’m quite happy with the progress I’ve been making thus far and I hope to have my Warrior at level 70 by next weekend.

Spyro in Gnasty's loot room

Now onto the real reason I’ve not been playing FFXIV that much.
Last weekend I bought the Spyro Reignited trilogy on a whim. I never had a Playstation myself when I was a kid, my parents bought me a Sega Megadrive (Genesis in the US) that I to this day still adore. However my best friend and her little brother got a modified Playstation as combined birthday gift. I say modified because it had been chipped to be able to play copied game discs meaning that their parents wouldn’t have to pay full price for the games they wanted to play. A lot of my good memories of rainy days come from either playing with her on our attic on the Sega or us playing Playstation games in her brother’s room. This is where I got introduced to Spyro, Crash Bandicoot and Tekken among other games. And although the memories of the original Spyro are kind of vague I knew I wanted to play the HD remakes to see if I could capture that nostalgia and to see if the remakes were any good.

Well I can confidently say that the purchase hasn’t been a waste since I’ve managed to completely finish the first game in the trilogy within a week. According to my save file I’m around 10 hours played after finishing everything there was to do in the game. I’ve beaten the game 120%, the extra 20% being the Gnasty’s Loot Cove level where I took the above picture. I’ve obtained every single Playstation Trophy that was attached to this game, leading to my very first Platinum trophy. Finally I managed to knock out obtaining all the Skill Points and thus unlocking an extra art gallery with a ton of pictures of concept art for the various dragons and other creatures you come across in the first game.

All in all I’ve had a ton of fun playing Spyro. The first game doesn’t have learned skills like the later games do and also have a lot less in the way of guidance the later games do but that makes it even more enjoyable to play. Apparently you can toggle a minimap while playing which, as you can see, I never had on. I wanted to explore all the levels on my own and when push came to shove I’d look up the final thing(s) I missed on Youtube. It was a heavy 90’s nostalgia blast and I’m happy I picked up the games even if it goes against my self-imposed rule of not buying any new games untill I’ve atleast finished some of my existing backlog.

I’ve already started the second game in the trilogy after finishing the first and I hope that I’ll enjoy that one just as much as I did this one but I’ll see once I’m a bit further into the game. So far I’m enjoying myself there aswell, even though the game is a bit more hand-holding than the first one. I already hate having to buy skills with gems though, then again it gives the gems a purpose besides just “collecting”.

As positive as my gaming week has been I’m unfortunately not this happy in real life. Work is being an absolute disaster. I’m in a team of three although it’s basically two and a half because one of the three only works for three days a week due to being a new mom and cutting down her hours, which is totally understandable. However my other colleague has taken three weeks off to move house and basically on Thursdays and Fridays I’m the only one around from my team. Which means everything ends up in my inbox/on my plate. It’s been a struggle to handle this and it’s basically made me come home completely broken on those two days. Add to that the fact that I’m having some issues with dinner and stomach pains and it’s not been a very fun week. Unfortunately for me this situation will last for two more weeks so I’ll just have to grit my teeth and get through. If this means less time for games and other hobbies and more time for sleeping and making sure I feel well then so be it. It will also probably mean my next post won’t be untill the weekend again because frankly I’m just too tired to sit down and write during the evenings.

Common Cold

Zurvan

Seems like I captured the Zurvan fight at just the right time. I always like the intermezzos that Square Enix builds into their trial fights and Zurvan is on the more epic side of said trials. I opted to not main tank this fight though since I’m not really familiar with it plus the other tank had like 10k HP more than I have (Warriors are filthy cheaters I tell you).
The progress on leveling Paladin has been slow but steady. I hit 68 tonight which means I should be 70 on Friday night and tick it off as another class done! In the meantime I’m enjoying tanking on Paladin a lot again, post 50 the job has gotten much more interesting with many more buttons to press than previously.

Being knocked down by a cold this week I didn’t really feel like doing much of anything. However yesterday during the afternoon I attended my very first live orchestra performance in the Concert building in Amsterdam. It was an orchestra plus choir from Eastern Europe and they performed music from various movies with the final hour being dedicated to music from Star Wars alone. It was a magnificent thing to attend and while I don’t necessarily enjoy classical music in general hearing an orchestra perform songs I know was something I felt I needed to experience. Even though when I came home I had a fever flaring up I’m happy I went. This did result in me calling in sick to work today after barely sleeping last night and dealing with all the discomforts that the common cold brings. I’ve thus recovered enough to try to attend work again tomorrow, even if it’s only for a part of the day.

Other than my cold and the concert I don’t really have much to tell right now. Being unwell kind of makes your days boring and mostly spent in bed. I’ve been in too much of a funk to really game a lot so apart from the progress on my Paladin I’ve not really touched anything else. I am planning to play a bit more Pokémon LetsGO as I start feeling better, and to change from playing FFXIV only to also playing a single player game on the side.