The Division

Hype?

With the announcement of the new Battlefield game it feels like the internet has exploded once again. Set in World War 1 it seems Dice is catering to a call coming from a big part of the FPS community that they want games going back to the past instead of games that look to the future.

Personally I wonder if it’s good to “hype up” games like this. I feel like the gaming community is hopping from one game to another. Creating massive expectations only to be disappointed in the long run. I’ve seen it happen to so many games and expansions now that I don’t even bat an eyelash anymore when another game get’s marked as “the next big thing”. We’ve all seen what happened to Destiny, The Division, Warlords of Draenor, ArcheAge. They were all games who promised to do something different, something new. Something worth spending your money on. In the end they were all disappointments in one way or another. Destiny didn’t deliver what they had promised at launch, basically being a ghost of the previews of the game given earlier. The Division had an amazing launch but fell off after people started to reach max level. Their first real added content was a major disappointment, not to mention the countless and countless of cheaters and hackers and bots in the Dark Zone. It really makes the game unfun to play.
Warlords of Draenor had a great launch but turned out to be Blizzard’s most disappointing expansion yet, next to Mists of Pandaria. I hope and pray that Legion won’t suffer the same fate, but I’m fairly skeptical. It’s why I can’t get really excited for the expansion and I actually shy away from all the information that’s being spread by people playing the Alpha. I’m happier if I just go into the game completely blank and then experience everything for the first time, like I used to do.
And now we have Battlefield. I’m personally not a fan of the genre, although I did play Battlefield 3. Shooters in general make me nervous and especially ones that are more PvP oriented. One of the few reasons I can stomach Divison and Destiny is because PvE is such a big part of the game, that I can just avoid PvP entirely and still enjoy my experience. So I’m not hyped up for this game at all, which might be good for my wallet in the end.

What is hype?
I want to take things a step further and say that I’ve honestly not been really hyped for any game release for a very long time. There’s a few games I really want to have, Ratchet and Clank was one of them, but I’ve not been scouring the internet for every breadcrumb of information about X game, intensifying my expectations and excitement about it releasing. Maybe it’s because I didn’t really grow up as a gamer, maybe because it’s just not in my nature to get excited about stuff like this. It’s not just games where I don’t have this. I’ve never been super excited to see X movie coming out either or X show. The only thing I can be excited about are books. I can’t wait untill the 6th installment of a Song of Ice and Fire comes out, like I couldn’t wait to get my  hands on the new Harry Potter book all those years ago.
But hyping up games? It’s not in my nature. I will look forward to a new installation in the Pokémon universe, I will look forward to a new World of Warcraft or FFXIV expansion coming out. I look forward to a new Kingdom Hearts and Final Fantasy game. But that’s about it.
Instead I get excited when I know I’m going on vacation. Or when I know I’m going to see a concert, or visit a special event, or meet up with a friend I haven’t seen in a while.
But games and their hype? I will never really understand.

Dietary Restrictions and PS4 Time

Last few weeks I’ve been slightly pigging out when it comes to food. March is a ridiculous month when it comes to birthdays so every weekend I was stuffing my face with all types of snacks, crisps, cake and other shit. Obviously this is bad when you’re trying to lose weight, so I’m putting myself back on some dietary restrictions. Trying to eat healthier (get some fruit instead of candy) and just eating less in general. I’m aiming for eating around 1200-1400 calories a day, mostly because 1200 is the minimum amount you  need to eat to keep on feeling healthy, and I don’t want my body to go into starvation mode.
Next to dietary restrictions I’m also trying to set some rules on my money spending habits. I’ve been spending a LOT of money on my new Wii U and getting games for it… So I should lay low for a while and stop spending. I’ve given myself a budget of €100 to spend each month on games and/or make-up. Seeing as Ratchet and Clank comes out in a few weeks that’s already some bucks gone, so I really need to think about what I want to buy next to that.

Seeing as it’s Easter, and I managed to get 5 days of free time due to lucky scheduling, I’ve been spending a lot of time just playing games. I can finally sit down for a longer time and get stuff done, instead of getting 2-3 hours of playtime in on a weekday where you can barely do a dungeon or mission in a game and then you need to start watching the clock to log off. I’ve also taken the opportunity to binge watch my way through Daredevil season 2 (which I loved) and start watching Jessica Jones (which I don’t nearly love as much). All in all I’m really using this elongated weekend to relax, play and get some “me” time in.

Sandrian Noble 19/03/2016 13:59:22

PS4 Shenaningans
I’ve been spending a lot of time playing on my PS4 in various games. Mostly FFXIV and The Division and I’ve been making some steady progress in both games.
In FFXIV I finally managed to get my hands on the Vath flying mount and oh my god it’s adorable. I really like the didgeridoo type of sound when it makes as I’m flying everywhere and it just reminds me of a really weird seahorse.
The Vath itself have been a silly but cute beasttribe. It reminded me in many ways of the Borg in Star Trek, and Square Enix did it’s best to incorporate some clear references to them aswell. I’m kind of sad that the Vath and Vanu Vanu appear to be the only beast tribes for this expansion, although you never know with Square Enix and maybe they will let us rank up with the Moogles aswell? Who knows.

Tom Clancy's The Division™_20160314230045

Division seems to be the hot game of the moment right now and ofcourse I couldn’t stay behind in playing it. Although I might not be as fast as most people playing, I’ve been making some steady progress. I really love roaming around in New York discovering stuff. I like taking my time and going into buildings and alleys and collecting all the random little lore bits, instead of just rushing ahead through the story without giving other things a second look.
I’m currently level 15 and roaming around in the Clinton District. I won’t deny that due to the nature of the game I’ve almost thrown my controller through the room in frustration multiple times. Shooters aren’t really my main genre and even if this is a more tactical one, I die a lot and am pretty bad in weapon handling.

The only real downside to Division for me seems to be the female character creator and the fact that lady characters absolutely look godawful if you give them a headpiece to wear. I’m really disappointed about this. Although Ubisoft clearly tried to attract a wider audience with this game, I wish they would actually not just give us variations of butch lesbian haircuts to choose from. Not to mention the seriously weird ass options you have for Caucasian female faces.
Ohwell.

 

Going with the Flow

Ever since I started work in November my life has been messed up quite a lot. Going from having all the time in the world, to suddenly having to plan what I do with my time has been rough on me. And the moment I finally get used to my normal work schedule, I get asked to work extra. Which not only totally messes up my normal routine, but also makes me very very tired, leaving me to just go to bed after dinner and a shower rather than staying up and game.
The past two or three weeks have been absolutely insane for me, working a lot of hours and having my weekends booked with all types of activities, including a company party. But after sleeping for about 9 hours last night I finally feel refreshed enough to sit down and write something on here again.

So what have I been up to then?
I have been gaming over the last few weeks. Mostly focusing my time on FFXIV and The Division. I never thought I would pick up the Division, shooters aren’t really my genre, but I’m very happy that I did. I absolutely love the tactical gameplay. I love that taking cover is a huge thing in firefights. And I love the exploration and RPG part of the game.
My entire experience with the Division has been positive so far, with only one tiny thing that I was unhappy with: female character customization. To be blunt, if I want a Caucasian female look I end up with a character with a seriously weird face that can’t even have longer hair than a tiny ponytail. I like the fact that I can play as a woman though, I just wish they were designed better.

In FFXIV I’ve mostly been trying to get Lore cap and work on my relic. I’m a bit burnt out on levelling, so it’s nice to focus on something else for a bit. It’s also very relaxing to know you only really have to do ex-roulette as you log on and then can do random silly things instead of hardcore levelling or raiding.

Other interests
I’ve finally finished off season 3 of Hannibal and am now officially done with the show. It’s been a long ride and I have loved every minute of it. You can see the makers clearly intended for another season, as there is an extra scene after the end credits of the last episode that makes the ending very open. Alas NBC ended the contract and I fear we will never see a season 4 of Hannibal.
I have also resubbed to Netflix and am now devouring Daredevil. Currently on episode 9 of season 1, I should be finished on time for season 2. I really love the dark grittiness of the show, and my word the guy who plays Daredevil is hot. I will definately watch season 2 as soon as it’s out and after that I will probably turn my attention to Jessica Jones.

Something else I’ve gotten really into lately is make-up and beauty products. Working in an environment full of women some things rub off on you eventually and I notice I really like fiddling around with how I look. So over the past week I’ve really been investing into quality make-up products (brands like OPI, Clinique and MAC) that will last me a while, instead of the €3 lipsticks I’ve been buying up untill now. I’m still a rookie when it comes to a lot of things, I can’t contour my face for the life of me, but I enjoy picking out lipsticks and nailpolish for the day and week and just take a few minutes to make myself look pretty.
It really cuts into my budget though. A “prestige” brand will charge easily over €20 for a single lipstick, but seeing as it will last you a very long time and it just looks good AND doesn’t dry out my lips like cheaper brands do I feel like it’s a solid investment. Not to mention it makes me look much more professional at work.

So what is next?
For the time being I’m just going with the flow of things. When I’m tired I turn away from games and towards Netflix. I’ll try to blog a bit more regularly and will probably blog a bit more about my other interests besides gaming aswell… Although that will always be my main subject.
Seeing as March is a seriously busy month for me I really need to get my sleep schedule in order aswell, because coming home extremely tired every night is seriously sucky and not something I plan on doing for the weeks to come.