Gaming Goals: January 2018

First off all I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year and hope that 2018 will be 100% better than 2017 for everyone. I spent my New Years eve celebrating with one of my best friends. It was a day and evening filled with games, good company and nice food. Ofcourse I went to bed a bit too late which means I’m going to bed nice and on time tonight to be well rested for work tomorrow. I’m also happy I decided to clean my room before leaving. I’m now home and have a bed with freshly washed sheets and an empty desk to look at, which makes me happy.

Now before I want to start talking about my plans for January I want to look back at December and what I’ve accomplished.

  • In World of Warcraft I managed to get my Paladin to level 110 and completed the Class Hall Campaign pre Legionfall. I decided to stop there and focus on gearing up and clearing out the remaining quests that I had before pushing on to Argus and eventually my Class Mount. She’s sitting on ilvl 850 now and I’m slowly whittling down my quest log. I’m quite happy with the progress I made considering I was sick in bed for an entire week. I really have to mention that I enjoyed the Paladin Class campaign like no other campaign so far. I like how it tied in with the Priest one and how everything played out. Next to working on my Paladin I’ve also picked up my Warrior again. I finally finished the Legionfall campaign, got Exalted status with them and got my Class mount. I’ve decided to slowly work through Argus on her and do some LFR to experience the story of Tomb of Sargeras and Antorus but that’s it.
  • In FFXIV I managed to get my Astrologian to 70 early on in the month and had my Miner ding 61. I’ve stalled on my Botanist however, she’s currently sitting around halfway to level 68. I do want to make the push towards 70 asap on that and my Miner so I can clear gear from my bags and maybe so I can start making some money. I’ve also casually been leveling my Machinist, it’s 61, and I’m quite happy with that. Ofcourse I’ve also done the christmas Event on both my characters so I now own my very own flying bear!
  • In non MMO games I’ve not made that much progress. I’ve played a bit of Xenoblade Chronicles, some I am Setsuna and Puyo Puyo Tetris but otherwise I’ve not really touched any games. It’s a bit disappointing but inbetween the stress from work and buying a house and feeling sick it really can’t be helped. I did manage to level another hero to level 5 in HotS so there’s that.
  • On the non gaming front I read the book I wanted to read in less than a week. I really enjoy this series by Patrick Rothfuss and I’m planning to read the rest of the series aswell. In series country I just couldn’t get into the Punisher. I don’t know if it’s just Marvel overload or if I just can’t watch another action packed series but instead of watching that I’ve delved deep into the serie “Lie to Me”. I’m currently halfway through season 2 and I’m sure I’ll watch the rest by the end of January.

Looking ahead to January I still want to keep my goals small. I will have a very tough month ahead of me work wise and I’m still not quite over my cold so I don’t want to plan too much while I know I probably won’t be able to do what I said I would. But this is what I’d like to accomplish the next month.

  • In WoW: Get Prestige rank 2 on my Warrior, finish off Argus on my Warrior and clear out any remaining quests that linger in my questlog. Do Tomb of Sargeras and Antorus for story on both Warrior and Paladin.
    On Paladin, push through the Legionfall and Argus story and get my Class Hall mount.
  • In FFXIV: Level my Botanist and Miner to level 70. Fiddle around on Machinist, no real level goal there, if I make it to 70 it’s nice, if not then no harm done.
  • Other games: play more Xenoblade Chronicles. Any progress is nice but I’d like to see a considerable part of the story before the month is over.
  • Non-gaming: Read “The Wise Men’s Fear” by Patrick Rothfuss. Finish watching “Lie to Me”. Watch the new season of “Black Mirror”

All in all this should be obtainable goals for the month. I have many more planned for the rest of the year and I’m planning to do a “goals for 2018” post somewhere this week. I don’t have big “real life” things to consider this year except for getting my apartment built so nothing should interfere with finally playing some of my backlog and having fun in MMO’s in 2018.

Gaming (and other) Goals December

Seeing as I don’t have the shadow of my education looming over me, I finished off my Master’s Thesis and handed it in AND presented last week, I feel like a weight has been lifted from my shoulders. Enough so that I can actually game, read and watch movies without feeling guilty in the back of my mind again.

So with this I wanted to make a goals post for the last month of this year: December.
I’m currently invested in a few games. FFXIV is still ungoing and I’ve picked up WoW again. Friday nights seem to be my new go-to for Heroes of the Storm, which is a game I thoroughly enjoy aswell. All in all I’m hoping to create a few planned game nights and stick to them to get stuff done. In the meantime there are some things I really want to get done this month.

In FFXIV

  • Level Astrologian to 70
  • Level Miner to 60 (and maybe 70?)
  • Level Botanist to 70

I want to get back into the leveling game on FFXIV and I want to shift my focus a bit away from the battle classes and onto my Gatherers. My Astrologian is currently level 66 and should have no issues getting to level 70. My Botanist is 62 and my Miner is 58. These are all easily attainable goals.

In WoW

  • Level my Horde Paladin to level 110 and get Argus + Class quests done

I only have one big goal in WoW for now. I’m playing it very casually but I really want to start getting some stuff done. I’ve switched over to the Horde side for the time being because I don’t want to deal with people in my Alliance guild right now. My Paladin is currently sitting on level 99 so it should be an easily attainable goal, even if I only spend a few hours a week doing this.

Other games

  • Make considerable headway in Xenoblade Chronicles 2
  • Get off the first island in Pokémon Ultrasun
  • Level atleast 1 hero to level 5 in Heroes of the Storm

I picked up Xenoblade Chronicles 2 yesterday and I’m fully committed this month to make significant headway in the game. I’ve played through the first hour or so and got away from the first city and onto the real first mission. There are a lot of things to discover in this game and I’m figuring them out slowly.
On the Pokémon front I picked up Ultrasun earlier in November and started piddling around in it. I’ve decided I want my team to be comprised of Alolan Pokémon only this playthrough and as my starter I picked Litten. My main goal is to get off the first island.
In Heroes of the Storm I want to work on leveling up heroes to level 5 that I enjoy playing. I have a bunch of them sitting in the level 1-4 range so it shouldn’t be a problem to pick one up and get to level 5, and by proxy learn to play them properly. I was considering picking either Tracer or Genji for this since I really like assassins but we’ll see.

Non gaming goals

  • Watch “the Punisher”
  • Read “The Name of the Wind” by Patrick Rothfuss

When I’m not spending my times on games I like to make use of my Netflix subscription or reading books. Lately I’ve been wanting to do more of both and after finishing “The Ouroboros Wave” by Jyouji Hayashi I feel like I can pick up a series of books again. A lot of people have been praising Patrick Rothfuss and I’m willing to give his series a try so I’m going to start off with “Name of the Wind”. As for Netflix. I’ve watched all Marvel shows up until now so it’s only fitting I’d watch the Punisher aswell.

So these are the things I hope to be doing in December. They are small goals, seeing as we have holidays and what not, but hopefully all of them attainable. I may post my intended schedule later this week but for now I’m going to dive into a book, seeing as I have a really annoying headache today and my eyes can’t take staring at a screen for too long.

A Weird State

Things have been weird for me lately. Both ingame and in real life. I can’t really describe it properly and I’m noticing I have a very difficult time expressing myself properly in English about this. I’ve been playing around with the idea of having a Dutch blog on the side that I can mostly just talk about my personal life on and the struggles I am having in day to day life with various things and talk a bit about my opinions on hot topics these days.

For now though I barely blog here and I know I probably won’t do much on a new blog once I make it so I’m holding off on the idea untill I’m a bit less occupied.
A few areas of my life have not been going well at all. I’m still struggling with uni stuff and I’m kicking myself in the head over it because I should’ve been done over the summer. For some reason just sitting down and writing has been hard and I’m not sure why I just have this wall when it comes to finishing this project. I’ve worked so hard on this twice now and I really want it to be done. I want my diploma and move on with my life. At this point the diploma doesn’t even mean that much to me anymore, I’m purely getting it out of spite and because it looks good on my resumé.
At work I’ve come to the point where I want to move on and look for something more challenging. I love the department I’m on now and I get along with a lot of my coworkers but I’ve hit my ceiling and the challenge and fun of showing up for work four days a week has been more or less drained. I can’t really develop here and because I know the department is going to be gone soon I’ve started thinking about what I would really want to do. For now I either want to go the direction of Support/IT or maybe something in commerce. I like being the spider in the web, connecting departments together and fixing problems so I hope I can find a job that will be exactly that.
I still live at home with no real option to move out anytime soon and I’m still depressingly single. Partly this comes down to me not really actively searching for a partner and partly it’s because my self image is at an all time low. I feel fat and ugly and tired and I’m not really sure how to change this around. I’ve not felt this down in a very long time and it’s costing me a lot of energy to just do my normal day-to-day stuff, let alone start getting my stamina and muscles up to a certain level again.

Next to all of this I’m slowly realizing that I need to spend less time looking at screens in general. It feels like I’m always looking at a screen of some sort and it’s making me shallow. If it’s not for games it’s for work or constantly checking my phone. Then there’s the tablet and e-reader which are both screens aswell. It’s slowly making me, and everyone else around me, antisocial. During lunch everyone stares at their phones. You plan a meeting with someone and phones are on the table. I stare at a screen at work for eight hours a day only to get on the train and stare at my phone screen and come home and stare at a monitor. It’s kind of driving me nuts. The actual social connections are becoming hard with this. Even visiting my best friend there’s not a single time that the phones don’t come out to message people or look at stuff. It’s kind of weird and it’s making me, and a whole generation with me like this, very unhappy. I notice that my concentration is taking hits. I used to be able to spend all day working on an embroidery project or reading but now I keep taking breaks to check my phone or start up a game. It’s become an addiction and I’m starting to notice the bad side effects that come with this.
Now obviously breaking the trend in a smartphone heavy world is hard but it’s something I feel like I need to do. I don’t want to go through live like this anymore and the only person that can change this is me.

In games I’ve been struggling aswell. My static is still going and they’re a great bunch of people but I’ve been frustrated with my performance on Ninja so much that I bitched about everything to people and now apparently they leaked this back to the static. Things have gotten complicated. I’ve said stuff I didn’t mean and I’ve been grumpy about things that have nothing to do with them but with myself and it’s not really something I can easily discuss with them as group. I don’t want to be taken pity on because I’m not in a position to be pitied. I picked a class to play this expansion and although I’m enjoying it greatly I’m not on the performance level I should be and I’m having a really hard time adjusting. In hindsight I probably should have switched to Bard when I had the chance but I’m determined to make Ninja work and clear O4S. I just really hope my static will give me another chance at doing this and that I can keep my cool about all of it.
I don’t want to be angry about games. They need to be fun and a way to get rid of frustrations, not create them. I’m really desperately finding a way to make it so they are but I’m not there yet. I know partly it’s because I’m having a rough time in my personal life right now that I can’t really seem to find the peace in the games I play that I so desperately want. I’ve used gaming as an outlet for so long now that I don’t think I’ve learned proper coping mechanisms for stuff and it’s impacting everything now, including the games I love so much. And I need to break out of this.

The only question is… How?

Sunday Summaries #1

So yeah. My official first Sunday Summaries post. I’m gonna look back on what I did during the week and what I have planned for next! My life is ever so interesting ofcourse.

First off, I’m still struggling with some health issues. My usual doctor has kind of given up on trying to find a cause and has sent me to see a specialist, specifically one that concerns the lungs. I’m still wheezing on many occassion when I exert myself and my cough is back in full aswell. This has caused me to feel absolutely horrible over the past week or so and honestly I’m kind of done feeling this way. So off to the specialist I go. My first appointment will be July 25th for another lung capacity test, after that we’ll see.
I’ve also been hard at work on my thesis, testing my cowokers and trying to get my approval for real. It’s all been a little chaotic with lots of things happening simultaneously but I think I can pull it off and be done with this major source of stress for good.
In the work department I’ve been asked to explain how our systems work to the new IT support team. We had a first meeting last week and a second meeting tomorrow. I’m sure they’re lovely people but they’re from India and I’m having real trouble understanding their accent. I’m not sure what’s up with that but not only do they have a difficult accent, they also tend to mumble instead of speak. Really annoying but the meeting was productive nonetheless. I had gotten some praise from some of my coworkers on the other teams afterwards so that’s really nice aswell.

Now onto gaming.
I’ve actually taken it easy this week. Work had gotten me really tired plus I felt like reading more than I did gaming. We did Omega with my new FC static and got everyone their loot for the week plus I think everyone has the Exdeath minion now, so that’s good. I’m rocking ilvl 317 average on my Ninja now and the only gear I can replace still are gloves, boots and chest. Seeing as Omega Savage launches next week I hope I can get some of that sweet loot aswell. We’ll see.
I do have to say that playing, and perfecting, the Ninja has been challenging this expansion. The Ten-Chi-Jin mechanic is not one that I really enjoy and I find it hard to incorporate it in my gameplay. I finally managed to nail my opener though, so that’s a thing. Now I just need to work on my Bhavacakra timing. It’s supposed to be always done during a Trick Attack window and I’m noticing that I’m not really handling that part very well yet. So I still have tons of room for improvement.
As far as leveling goes, I’ve mostly focused on the Red Mage and have gotten her to level 55. This is done via Palace of the Dead which is the fastest level method by far. It takes 3-4 runs of floor 51-60 per level so I could just sit down for about an hour and get a level done. It’s been really nice. I’ve opted to not do the job quests untill I’m level 60 and in full level 60 caster gear. I don’t want to buy things during a time where I know I won’t touch the class outside of Palace of the Dead anyway so that will save me some gil. I’ve also realized that I’ve held on to the HQ healer gear that I had gotten leveling up during Heavensward. I think I’m going to get rid of that aswell seeing as I’m taking the only healer I have left sub 60 (White Mage) through the PotD route aswell. I don’t think I’ll need any of the gear I’ve been saving up there. Plus as added bonus it frees up a ton of space on my retainer. As far as glamour purposes go, I can always get the gear again if I want to. For now I’m just settling on not getting any “new” gear untill level 60 where Palace of the Dead becomes moot and you have to actually grind your way up again through other means.

Next to FFXIV I’ve been poking around in Diablo 3 again after buying the Necromancer pack. The new Diablo season is starting this week so I might just poke my head in for that and play Necromancer for a change. See how the class feels and if it makes the experience fresh enough again for me to stick around.

Next to all the gaming I’ve been reading a lot as I’ve mentioned earlier. I finished off the last David Eddings book that I have in my possesion and started the Lies of Locke Lamora.

Next week
I will have another busy work week. I hope to finish my testing for thesis and I have atleast one important meeting scheduled. There’s also the standard stuff that needs to get done so those will be four days well spent.
I really hope to finish the Lies of Locke Lamora. The book has me hooked, I really enjoy the story buildup and I want to read more! The only downside to finishing it will be that I will have to look for the second part, which I can obtain in various ways.
I want to get my Red Mage to level 60. It really only takes an hour of grinding Palace of the Dead per level or so, so it should be doable. I also want to focus on Miner a bit and get her to 50 and maybe beyond. We’ll see.
I’m going to dive into the new season of Diablo as Necromancer and probably make some sort of report of my journey along the way. I’ve not touched Diablo for quite some time now, enough to feel like I can sink a few hours in again without feeling the burn and frustrations that I’ve been feeling when I did the last few seasons.

All in all a very busy week for me! I hope to be able to tell you guys that I’ve met all my goals next week.

Procrast—stop!

I’m a notorious procrastinator. I put things off untill the very last minute and then either come up with an excuse as to why I haven’t done what I should be doing or I’ll go into a panicked frenzy to complete the task just before the deadline.
Although this has worked for me throughout most of my school career I’m noticing that it’s a really hard pattern to keep on following throughout adult life. It’s not fun to be off during the weekends and have to work your way through a mountain of laundry, where you could have just done the small piles they initially were during the evening as you got home. The same behaviour follows me into games where I tend to save events, weekly quests and roulettes (in the case of FFXIV) untill the last possible moment to do them. This has cost me atleast a few Yo-Kai weapons to name an example but also caused me to not get the maximum out of my characters in World of Warcraft.

Normally I don’t really do New Years resolutions. Mostly because I know I don’t stick to them. If I want to lose weight I’ll do it immediatly and not starting January 1st. I do however feel that the procrastinator side of me deserves to die a slow death. It’s just so stressful for me personally to feel like I’m having to do everything at the last moment. At work I’ve noticed that I forget to do stuff when I don’t do something immediatly, sometimes to the detriment of the company. At home I let my room become a rather big mess during the week because I’m too lazy to clean up after I get home from work, so when Thursday or Saturday arrives I’m filled with a room that is full of clothes, both clean and dirty, dishes and other random crap. It’s not a healthy way to live.

I have made a small start with my new behaviour by just making sure I immediatly fold all the clean laundry that my dad deposits infront of my room. I make sure that all the dirty laundry is in the laundry basket before I go to sleep at night and that I don’t have any dishes left in my room either. It’s a routine that needs a bit of work, but once it becomes just that I’ll probably do all of it without thinking about it, and enjoy a cleaner, emptier room and as a result a cleaner and emptier head.

I will probably do the same with games. Tackle weekly quests early in WoW. Do the Worldboss the first day. Do Archaeology the first day. Make time for LFR on Thursdays (that’s my day off) when I have quests to go into there. Make sure I cap on tomes in FFXIV. It’s really not hard, it only requires me to do five ex-roulettes a week, something I can just sit down to do after dinner on nights where I don’t raid on WoW. On days off I can do a bit extra. Do a level roulette. Play some different games. Get stuff done the moment you see it pop up. And plan my gametime better.
I know how much time I need to do a roulette in FFXIV, including the wait for the dungeon queue to pop. I know how much time my emissary quests take in WoW. I can sit down and do those before dinner if I want to, under the condition that I’m not completely exhausted like I was today.

I may look into a reminder app on my phone that will just beep me at 23.00 to get me to start my evening ritual. Something where I can tap off the things I want to do before I close down the day. Which is mostly making sure my room is clean, making sure I’ve put on my lotions so I don’t wake up with a skin like sandpaper in the morning and the whole cleaning my teeth and taking my pills. It shouldn’t take long and it makes it so I’m properly closing out the day.

So yeah. Even though it’s not really a “new year, new me” type of thing… I do want to better my behaviour for my own good and make my life as stress free as possible.

Gaming Goals: January 2017

Seeing as I’m finishing off some IRL stuff I can confidently start setting goals in games again per month. So let’s start with January for now.

I’m planning to play a lot of FFXIV and WoW so the biggest part of my goals will be tied to those two games.

First off FFXIV!

  • Gear up AST with Lore gear
  • Level MCH to 60
  • Gear up NIN with Scripture gear
  • Do the Heavensturn event on Sandrian and Sarella
  • Work on Ninja relic

My Astrologian dinged 60 today and I do want to be able to dungeons on her to shorten queue times and to have something besides DPS to play on. So my main goal is to get her into Lore gear atleast, before using said Lore to power up my Ninja relic. The scripture gear I want to invest on Ninja, since it’s still my main job. Next to that I’m focusing on my next class to level 60 which will be Machinist. She’s already level 53 so that shouldn’t take me too long.
Lastly I want to focus on doing the Heavensturn event on both my characters, which again shouldn’t take that long!

Then onto WoW

  • Level up Arms Artifact weapon on Warrior to level 34
  • Max out Fury Artifact weapon on Warrior
  • Max out MM Artifact weapon on Hunter

WoW is plain and simple and mostly about leveling up my Artifact weapons. I do hope to complete Trial of Valor heroic aswell before Nighthold comes out, but that’s more of a guild thing and not something I can do solo. With me getting Artifact Knowledge level 25 tomorrow on my Warrior leveling up my Arms weapon and getting close to maxing out my Fury weapon should be a piece of cake. I know I’m still quite far off, my Fury weapon is level 35 right now, but every point spent counts for something! I also want to focus on getting my Hunter’s Marksmanship weapon up to par. I’m sitting around level 31 now which is good, but not good enough yet. I do give this less priority than my Warrior weapon though, so I’m not too fussed if I don’t rank up that much.

Then as final goal..

  • Finish Pokémon Moon

As of writing this post I’m at the last trial of the second island. I really want to make some progress in this game and defeat the Elite Four and whatever postgame content there is before I turn my attention to filling up the Pokédex. For now I’m happy to just defeat the Elite Four though, so that is what my aim will be for this month.

I’ve tried to keep it light and easy on myself. It’s going to be a busy month and I want realistic goals that I can actually obtain.

May Recap.

The month of May is over today and it’s time to take a look back at what I’ve actually achieved this month.

Goals for FFXIV

  • Level Monk to 50
  • Level Machinist to 50
  • Level Alchemist to 30
  • Level Armorer to 30
  • Level Blacksmith to 30
  • Level Culinarian to 30
  • Level Goldsmith to 30
  • Level Leatherworker to 30
  • Level Fisher to 30
  • Level Miner to 30
  • Finish Scholar 2.0 Relic Zenith
  • Finish Monk 2.0 Relic Zenith

Unfortunately I spent a lot less time playing FFXIV than I would have thought. With work being seriously overwhelming, me starting a new training regime and picking up a few new and very addicting games I actually only completed one goal this month, and that is level Goldsmith to level 30. I have barely touched any other crafters unfortunately, but I did level my Monk and Machinist. My Monk is currently sitting at level 40, where my Machinist has dinged 46 yesterday. All in all I made some progress and actually am not that far off level 50 on atleast the Machinist. Seeing as I have a nice vacation coming up I think I’ll be spending a bit more time in FFXIV so I’ll keep the goals I set for May and just push them over to June.

Goals for Blizzard Games

  • Get rank 20 in Hearthstone
  • Finish second wing of League of Explorers
  • Unlock third wing of League of Explorers
  • Finish Diablo 3 chapter 4 for the season
  • Play Overwatch! (I got early acces to open beta)

Other Goals

  • Finish reading Illidan
  • Finish watching Gotham season 1
  • Defeat second and third Gyms in Pokémon Blue
  • Play through two additional worlds/mission clusters in Ratchet and Clank
  • Wrap up some personal stuff related to University.

I got rank 20 in Hearthstone pretty fast with the release of the Old Gods expansion and also took the time to play through the second wing of LoE so that’s done. I’m still trying to unlock the third wing, but all in good time. I played less Overwatch than I thought, mostly due to being seriously tired. I did get some time in and am played about 5-6 games since launch. I’m still trying out a lot of the roster available and am mostly playing one or two games inbetween other activities as a sort of distraction.
I started out strong in Diablo last month, but unfortunately fell into the “I’m bored of grinding” after only a day or two. I do want to complete chapter 4 for the goodies, so I’ll try to focus on that next month.
As far as my other goals go. I read through Illidan pretty fast and really enjoyed the book. I’m way past the Third Gym in Pokémon Blue now (yay for playing on the train) and I’m over halfway with watching Gotham so I have been doing a lot outside of games. Unfortunately I was just too tired to do much of anything else so a lot of these goals will probably get dragged over to June aswell. I’ll see. I’m looking at what games I’m currently playing and enjoying and probably frame my June goals around that.
I’m a bit disappointed by the fact that I couldn’t do nearly as much as I’d hoped, but well, feeling tired a lot kind of takes away from gaming.

No Overwatch?

Honestly on launch day I can’t really ignore the fact that Overwatch is now officially playable. I dipped my toes in earlier this evening after dinner, but a pounding head and an overwhelming desire to sleep drove me away from the game to relaxation instead. Trying to learn new heroes and staying with the pace of the game while also trying to not fall asleep in my chair wasn’t really doable, so I’ll probably play some more over the week and then talk a bit more about it aswell.
Instead I want to talk a bit about Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright.

A local multimedia store had a nice sale going this week. Buy three games and only pay for two. I took this opportunity to nab a copy of Mario Kart 8 and Super Mario 3D World for my WiiU but also my very first Fire Emblem game. I have heard a lot about the series and they seem to have gotten positive reviews, plus I have a serious weakness for JRPG graphics in a game so I got the last nudge I needed to pick up the game and experience what it’s all about. I picked Birthright because apparently it’s the easier of the two latest Fire Emblem games that are out now. I plopped the game into my 3DS last night and played for a bit before hopping onto FFXIV for my roulettes. I’ve also played a bit on the train to work this morning and on the way back home and I think I’m done with the prologue/tutorial part, which takes about 1.5 hours to complete. I unlocked my castle and built my first building and now I’m kind of poking around what exactly I need to be doing to advance in the game. I think I’ll need multiple playthroughs in this game to begin with because the game lets you choose multiple storylines and I kind of want to explore them all… But let’s just start with the one I chose: the Hoshido story. I play the game on Classic mode since that is apparently how it’s meant to be played and I managed to already get two of my dudes killed off so that’s a good start, right?!
So far the story is a bit thin but the graphics and music of the game are absolutely stunning. I haven’t been able to skip a single cutscene just because how breathtaking the design of this game looks. I like how you can customize your character up to a point and how they allow you to switch your hairstyle halfway through the game. As said I’m only 1.5 hours in so I can’t really comment too much on the game yet, but it looks to be an epic experience and I’ve currently set aside all my other handheld games to play it.

From what I understood the story of this game is cut up in three separate games so if I would want to experience it fully I’d need to get my hands on the other two paths aswell. However since this is my first game and I’m not sure how much I like the franchise yet I think I’ll stick to finishing Birthright first, and then I can always look into getting Conquest and/or Revelations later. Maybe Nintendo will let us purchase the other paths for cheaper when the games are out longer. Who knows. For now though the game has really captivated me and I want to know how the story unfolds and how bad (or good) I really am at the strategy parts of this game.

Vacation Inbound
My two-and-a-half weeks off are getting closer and closer aswell. With officially only 5 days of work still ahead of me I can feel my body ache for some nice relaxing time off. My vacation starts on June 2nd and I won’t have to go back to work untill June 20th. The idea of having 18 days off is seriously amazing and I’ve also booked a 4-day citytrip to Lisbon to get me out of the country and the house for a bit. I hope I can use this time to sort through a lot of junk on the attic and in the shed, tie up loose ends in my life, work out a lot and maybe finish a game or two that I have bought over the years. It’s just a really nice feeling to not have any obligations or alarm clocks in my life for a bit and that I finally can spend my time the way I want to without feeling guilty, because next to having 18 days off I also have the house to myself. My father and his girlfriend are going on vacation to Canada for almost 5 weeks, and I will have the house and car to myself for that time. So yay for me!
As for the rest of this week, I’m going to be very busy so I doubt I can get much gaming hours in. I do hope to push my Machinist to level 50 though with my Monk trailing not that far behind. But Overwatch will dominate my free time the most.

Two Sides

As far as I can remember I’ve been fairly lucky when it comes to the gaming community as a whole. I’ve always been in friendly environments with overall nice guilds, nice people and nice servers. From the moment I set foot in WoW untill today I can honestly say that I’ve never experienced extreme toxicity, harassment or other negative experiences in the games that I play. Ofcourse there are some games where toxicity is unavoidable, MOBA types like League of Legends are one of the most notorious for this, but I’ve always tried to stay clean of that and if there was negative stuff in my games I just stepped away.
I think the “worst” experience I had online was with guys who couldn’t take a hint about me not being interested in them and they would stick around and be annoying for a little bit too long. In the end I either had to have a firm talk with them or just put them on ignore and they wouldn’t bother me anymore. All in all I’ve been lucky I guess.
It also helps that I’m not famous in any way. Most likely because I can’t commit to a game to become good enough to compete with the top people in that game, and that’s fine by me. I like poking about on my own or with a group of friends, just having fun and doing random things. That’s why I don’t hardcore ladder in Hearthstone or do ranked games in League of Legends. The only game in which I tend to tryhard and achieve stuff is Heroes of the Storm, and I am actually planning to actively ladder up when the season starts. Other than that though, I play relatively safe games where the only thing you have to deal with sometimes is DPS elitists, but even they are starting to become a rare breed.

However…
Over the past weekend I’ve seen how truly toxic the gaming community can be. One of my favourite casters from League of Legends has gotten into trouble because of false allegations aimed at him personally. Very long story short, a streamer accused said caster of pedophilia for no apparent reason other than to create drama. Although he retracted the accusations the damage has already been done and Krepo has been dealing with the fallout ever since. This happened about a month ago after I visited the League of Legends playoffs in Rotterdam.
Fast forward to the present. Caster X has been streaming for the past few days, a mix of League of Legends and Digimon. The Digimon streams were small and fun, lots of viewer interaction and all in all quite positive. The moment he goes back to streaming League of Legends though, the jerks appear. Constantly reminding him of the false allegations, calling him out, trolling him in Twitch chat, on social media, via messages on Snapchat and Facebook. It’s gotten so bad that they tell him to go kill himself followed by “haha joking”. I can only imagine how tough it must be to deal with this on a daily basis and when things got too much for him yesterday he quit his stream and annouced he’d go blackscreen for quite a while.
As a fan and as a human being this saddens me. No one would have to deal with this amount of harassment and I can honestly not understand why people would do this to someone. I’ve seen some toxic behaviour already but this just overshadows everything I have ever encountered. People seem to enjoy bringing him down and I just can’t seem to grasp why. If it were only a handful of people doing this it’s one thing, but when it’s tons of people every single day it turns into something much more serious.
Suddenly the positive gaming community, the community I have always called my second home that was and is filled with nice people has turned a very very dark page. I guess there is always two sides to everything, but in this case I feel like Pandora’s Box has been opened and there is no way to close it anytime soon. It also makes me very sad that it gives the League of Legends community, and the gamer community in a broader sense, bad rep. All these people identify as “gamer” in one way or another and it just adds negativity to the tag. It only strengthens the stereotypes where gamers are kids and ragers and where gaming is bad for you and turns you into horrible people.
This has also shaken my core belief that people all have some good in them. Seeing people revel in someone else’s misery, seeing them make light and fun of serious accusations and seeing them just absolutely ruin someone’s day and maybe even career just for fun… I just can’t deal with it properly. My heart bleeds and I’m upset and angry at these people. I don’t think they feel empathy of any kind, if they are willing to be like this. But honestly what can I really do about it?

I guess this is the price you pay for being “famous”. People like bringing you down because of jealousy or malice and whenever a juicy drama occurs people are eager to jump into it. You see it happen with the normal athletes. With people from Hollywood and now also within E-Sports.
It does make me wish I could somehow punch them though.

Taking Mandatory Breaks

When I was young, I used to practice gymnastics. A lot of my teammates used to train with either wrist or ankle straps on. I was one of the latter uses. I had weak ankles and would bruise them fast. Luckily for me the balance beam, bridge and floor parts weren’t an issue as that’s more acrobatics and balance than speed and strenght. The jump however was my big enemy and I would often bruise my ankle by either sprinting up to the trampoline or board or landing wrong after my jump. So whenever I had to practice that particular part or perform during a gymnastics match I would make sure my ankles were taped in properly so stuff like that wouldn’t happen.

Fast forward about 15 years and I’m at risk for injury once again, only this time it’s my wrist and it’s caused by excessive usage of the mouse. Especially now that I have landed a job in datamanagement/IT I notice that I can’t really game as intensively as I used to and that I need to pay attention to the signs my body gives me way earlier than I’m used to.
I got confronted with this very hard after a four hour playsession on Diablo 3 last night. Now ofcourse Diablo is a very mouse intensive game so getting your wrist hurt is easier there, but honestly it really quite scared me. The fact that my wrist still seems to hurt today only emphasizes that taking regular breaks in gaming is very much necessary. Not only because it’s better for my wrist, it’s also much better for one’s health in general to not sit down for hours at a time.
Even at work I get up every two hours so I think I really want to enforce that policy during home play aswell.

It’s not just the wrist. I notice my back and bottom start hurting after a while aswell. Sitting is literally causing harm and I don’t want that. So even though I want to do all these things in all these games, I also need to take things in moderation. Especially when I notice it’s taking it’s toll on my body. And right now on some days it really is.
I guess getting older really is starting to show. I remember playing for hours straight on World of Warcraft when i was 20 years old. I just can’t do that anymore. And in a way, that’s a good thing.