Not a lot of video games this month. In fact, this might be the least amount of games I've played.
Here are the games I played this month!
Ni No Kuni: The Wrath of the White Wicth - Playstation 3
Such a beautiful game, but the computer controlled allies are the most informant I've encountered. In Persona 3 your party member was entirely controlled by the game. Usually they would make decent derision a based on the tactics I set for them. Drago Quest has had some type of auto battle that works the same way, even the level 5 developed Dragon Quest 8 had such a competent system for this, that I kept it on throughout most of the game. I much prefer having my party members do their own thing, but very wisely Persona 4, like Dragon Quest 8 presents automated party members as an option.
In Ni No Kuni, this isn't an option. I am forced to let the two extra party members do their own things, usually they're only helpful at distracting enemies and nothing more.
I've an option to tell everyone to defend or attack, but this option doesn't tell the character I control to do that. They just stand there like an asshole while the big boss who clearly telegraphs their super attacks does more damage than I would like. Now I hit the all defend button, then frantically rush to defend. This is a problem for me.
I'm also annoyed by the shop owners and their stores being repeated throughout the game with minimal interior changes. Some have a treasure chest or don't.
My team has grown to include two extra characters and over a dozen monsters. I don't have any real attachment to any of them. The designs aren't striking or charming, nor are the personalities presented. The girl character has no characterization at all. She merely is, "the girl." The second guy party member is defined as being a thief, abut wait, he's got a secret he doesn't want to tell. I figured out his secret hours before the other characters. The story is moving along at a snail pace.
I'm now officially in the third disc slump of Ni No Kuni. I had a boat, now I can fly around the world. I want as little to do with this as possible now. Why does freedom in these games make me want to quit? I've third evolution monsters, who now need leveled up for the third time. This isn't charming, that's frustrating. The only monster that doesn't look stupid is the skeleton I have who now has a bull skull.
Over the last few nights I've had off, haven't touched it. I've thought about it, but I've felt despair. My marriage has broken, my view of the world has shifted darker than it ever was, and I've lost all confidence in myself.
While writing the tenth chapter of Bonerquest, the final chapter, I broke emotionally. It was very upsetting as I confronted my own demons in writing. I knew I would, it was in my outlines, but finding the words to express it and really living in absolute darkness mentally, broke me. I cried. I sat in bed. I took a lot of baths in the dark and just say there, trying to find something positive to think of. I just can't. This book is a nightmare I wrote down and I'll be happy when I publish it and never have to write or think about it again.
Why is it sad?
Well, the story spirals downward in such a way that hurt me to visualize. Things start off bad and go worse. This story will hopefully effect you emotionally when you read it. It gets up it's own ass a couple times over, but I think the humor layer works and that's the most important part for me. If this book isn't funny, I fucked up. If the book isn't sad, then I fucked up. I fucked up thinking I could write this story.
When I first came up with Bonerquest, I was about fourteen. It was much sillier and the ending wasn't there. The year after I did a sequel to those comics, that went even deeper into chaos. None of the real meat was there. A version of one of the antagonists was there, but he wasn't defined. The fairy people, who I decided not to call fairies today, they were there.
It was while laying in a bathtub in 2005, that I realized what the perfect ending would be. What the perfect origin for the main protagonist would be. As I tried to write it, I started off with changing protagonists every chapter. What a genius and original idea, I thought. Nobody has ever done this! I was so stupid. My writing involved a b-level plot that felt like a bad fantasy story, it wasn't me. It had a basalisk that I decided should just be a dragon, but it seemed stupid to just use a dragon. The first two chapters were a mess. The idea of portraying the world from different protagonists who all are liars rewriting their own history as they tell it, that fascinated me. I loved that. But I just couldn't pull it off.
In 2008, I worked as a bag boy at a grocery store. Another bagger claimed he had wrote a novel that was a satire of Adam and Eve that involved a pot smoking snake and hippies. Stephen met with a publisher in Virginia, or so he claimed. To my knowledge his book remains unpublished, if it ever existed.
It was in the bathroom one day where I was taking a leak, as I often do at work. There is a certain joy in being paid to piss. Stephen showed up to do the scheduled bathroom check, where baggers were required to clean toilets and once over the bathroom. Usually this involved going back and flushing the toilet. If you were unlucky, as I was once, you'll find the toilet full. When Stephen said he was there to do the bathroom check, I explained it was still there. This made him giggle, such a simple statement made him say, "I like you Charles, your a funny guy. You should try writing like I did." I explained I spent my teenage years online, developing Internet comics. Writing and developing a lot of different comics, none of which I was super proud of, but I did the work. The experience was there. After eight years, I knew how to tell a story and develop characters, even with lots of spelling errors and logic holes, I could make something interesting.
It was 2008, that I had accepted the honor of making Bonerquest a video game. In 2010, I had butthole surgery and told the doctor I could write a novel about the pain I felt, which amused her. My suffering them informed my lifestyle, even now. As I lay bleeding out the ass, I was as close to death as I could be. I sometimes wish I had let myself just bleed out the ass and die, that would have been the funniest way possible to die, but I didn't.
I want to experience life. All of life that I can. I don't like keeping secrets. Suddenly I take my work stocking shelves less serious. I got married. I've flew on planes and met people from Destructoid in person. I'm alive and all I can think of is death. I hate where I'm at, what I'm doing, and have no motivation to continue to live this lifestyle. As I am now is not how I will be, I can do better.
It was on my wedding day, we met with my wife's maid of honor, and I brought up the topic of editing something I wrote. I wanted to write a novel and self publish it. That no one has to believe in me, that I'm incredible, and that working night shift is actually killing me. That sitting inside all day, is killing me. That I have to make drastic changes, that will all begin with writing a professional novel. She thought I was joking and agreed to help out. Now here I am, two years later, preparing to send her the complete mess as I want to publish it. I'm sad.
There was a thought, that I would begin drinking heavily when I finished the book and had it sent off to be printed. That I would go into a Leaving Las Vegas kind of life for a long time. I've never drank before, but I've had a bottle of whiskey that I stare at. I don't want to do this.
But yeah. I've not touched Ni No Kuni in about three weeks. I like it, I want to finish it, but I probably won't for a bit. I'm really busy.
Battle Cats - iOS
My wife downloaded this on her iPhone, so I got it on my iPod. It's a tower defense kind of thing with cats. As I played it, I wonder why I did so? It wasn't fun leveling up creatures. It passed time at work, but it wasn't really a good game. I got forty levels into it, why do I want to finish it if I don't like it?
So I did finish it, I was places I didn't want to be, all month. No gameboys, meaning psp of DS, but I had the iPod with me. I have it at work with me, I don't love this game. The social hook, "pay to win" stuff bothers me, and this type of bullshit is defining video games not being discouraged. As much as it bothers me, there are people who just want to win and pay to unlock everything.
My argument against pay to win style games is simple: the game is playing to win, if you just pay for boosts or items that help you win, why pay extra for those items? If I could just pay five dollars and have my team on Ni No Kuni be a bunch of badasses, that defeats the point of the game.
Interestingly, this game had some "free" social hook stuff to unlock points. I'm bothered by these so much, I took some pictures. Keep in kind, buying items in these games doesn't guarantee that you'll win. How the fuck can people but this shit?
Beastie Bay - iOS
This is kairosoft's free to play game. While stuck somewhere I dabbled in it, it was ok. It's kind of like their dungeon and astro games, except now featuring exhausting RPG battles. I say exhausting, because selecting attacks for your monsters is so slow, it makes every battle drag. I don't like that, so I quit playing it, never touched it again.
Actually, I need to go delete it right now, that's how I feel about it.
Let's see if I can finish Ni No Kuni this month.