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digital highs

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An OCD gamer's average weekend


I was in line at the post office the other day. While I waited for the lady in front of me to run out of expletives to fling at the patient, mildly incompetent clerk, my eye fell on a large cardboard box sitting in a corner and a large question mark appeared over my head. In my long queue-induced torpor, I approached the box and considered kicking it over, yelling "THERE HE IS!". It must've been full of bricks or something, because I hurt my foot and it didn't budge. With the atmosphere of open warfare typical of most post offices, nobody really noticed this act of apparent lunacy. I quietly walked back to my spot in the queue, blaming my lack of common sense. Of course it wasn't Solid Snake. Solid Snake is too pimp to pay his bills at the post office.

After sitting through the lengthy loading time, I finally got my turn. It was fairly routine - I just had to deliver the item along with some gold. I could've used the gold, but I prefer to complete these kinds of quests as soon as possible. There's always time to go mining and stuff. The NPC behind the counter offered me a slip of paper as proof, but I just crossed the quest off my list. I don't need useless items cluttering my inventory, but it was a stupid key item so I had to take it anyway. I couldn't even sell it to the merchant cleaning windscreens at the traffic light.

It took me a while to walk back home; I make it a point to lean behind cover before turning every corner. Too cautious maybe, but you can never be too careful with a single life and no continues. I had a couple of free hours, so I decided to grind a little. I went to the park and ran a few laps. Some people stared when I yelled "YES! MY SKILL LEVEL HAS INCREASED!" as usual. Envious, no doubt.

I got back home and took a shower to replenish my stamina bar. My phone rang and there was a mandatory event where this chick asked me if I wanted to go see a movie with her and a couple other characters. I hadn't raided with this party in quite a while, and I really had nothing to do, so my dialogue options didn't even include a negative answer. I generally dislike that kind of lack of freedom, but in this case I didn't mind. Since I had already taken care of grinding for the day, I decided I may as well devote the evening to improving my S-Links.

On the way to the cinema a pigeon crapped on my new jacket - I almost managed to fend it off with a reversal DP, but ended up trading. Should've focused that shit, but I'm not too good with the matchup - I was afraid it might be two hits. Anyway it was enough to fill my revenge gauge, and I managed to punish the fucker with an ultra juggle. It's good to be high tier. Pigeons are all scrubs anyway, always jumping in on you and spamming those cheap flying projectile moves. That shit may fly with someone who doesn't have a reliable anti-air, but otherwise, what do they expect?

The movie was boring, unskippable, and didn't even have any QTEs. It was rendered completely with the gameplay engine, too - I'm usually all for that but it could've used some particle effects. At least the rest of the evening was good - as usual I ordered a pint of every beer in the pub, including the really expensive ones. It took a while to drink them all but that's something a true completist must learn to accept. It was worth it anyway, as they gave me an extra free one in a sick platinum mug at the end. 100% doesn't come for free, after all, and I'm not the type who can just feel happy with one or two times through the same drink.

I was kinda drunk when we left; the controls got all messy, and the graphics had this weird blur effect. I had to compensate carefully in order to avoid falling over. We were pretty far from my save room, so I had to set my home point at somebody else's place. I was hoping this would result in an AO-rated event with the chick, but people are generally very wary with that kind of stuff. If even it were possible, I screwed up a couple of choices in my conversation tree anyway.

The next day was a Sunday, so we went for some FIFA at a football pitch near my place. Nice server, real grass and all. I felt good; all the status ailments from the night before had gone. We played on amateur level and I scored a couple of goals, though I'm still convinced the game is broken. A couple of guys just had too many invincible frames in their dribbling animation, as well as godly shot ratings. Anyway I must've held the dash button down too much, because I was completely spent at the end. It started raining lightly and a couple of players had a weakness to water, so we decided to just quit early and simulate the rest of the match.

On Monday, as usual, I showed up for duty with my clan. The sessions can get pretty tedious, but my clanmates are all a lot of fun. Plus, the clan leaders are really generous when it comes to doling out rewards. It was a fairly boring day, but I feel I still did all right. I got some points, and even managed to put together a 5x document revision streak, which enabled me to use a free coffee bonus. That really helped my game through the rest of the day. This dude from the IT clan kept spamming the forums to organize a joint session, but I just put him on ignore.

I couldn't wait to get back home to do some side missions, but I still drove carefully - I didn't need any wanted stars to sidetrack me and waste more time. Besides, I'm going for a lawful good run, and that would've seriously hurt my alignment score. Some dude backed out of a parking spot without looking and missed my car's hitbox by one or two pixels. The real bummer was when I was walking from the car to my place - my phone rang, and I missed the QTE and dropped it. It pissed me off, especially since the ensuing phone call was just a random optional event that added nothing to the overall plot. The phone is still equippable, but I could've done without this - it's probably only got a few damage points left before I have to get a new one. I hope I can get one of the same class, because I've amassed a lot of skill points on this thing.

That evening another dude on my friends list hosted a game of poker. For some reason he almost got angry when I checked the chests in his bedroom for items. It was a fun session, although I thought the metal soundtrack didn't fit too well with the environment. Anyway, we spotted one of the players using hax, and the admin just banned him from the server immediately. I thought that was a bit harsh; I know the guy, and he probably just wanted to try that stuff out for fun. We weren't playing ranked anyway.

Eventually, I got back home. It had been some time since I'd last saved, so I headed straight for the bathroom and sat down.

My name is Michael J, and I am an obsessive.
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About shinryuone of us since 3:38 PM on 10.29.2008

There was a HOLE here.
It's gone now.


I've been around Dtoid since the early days. You can catch me lurking around in the forums and occasionally blogging when I feel I have something to say. Have been gaming since the early NES days, mostly on PS3/PC/Wii nowadays. I also hang around on Twitter and Backloggery so feel free to add me!

Favourite games, in no particular order: Metal Gear Solid FFV-VI-VII-X-XII Street Fighter anything Resident Evil 2-4 Legacy of Kain series Anything by LucasArts from last century Vagrant Story Persona 3 Portal Zelda series Devil May Cry 3 God of War series Silent Hill 1-2 ISS/PES series Shadow of the Colossus Super Metroid Bionic Commando GTA series Uncharted series
PSN ID:Shinryu108
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Mii code:6924 6708 6017 7005


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