When I conceptualized this website, I referred to it as a “blog on gaming and culture.” I’ve written a whole lot on the former and not much else. Today I’ll make an attempt to change that with a topic that I find to be extremely important and worthy of discussion — mental health. I’ll keep it simple, but try to just state my focus up front. I believe that constant electronic device and social media use can add substantially to the depression and anxiety that many of us face daily.
“They sure don’t make ’em like they used to.”
That’s a line we’ve all probably said in reference to a game or series in our lives. Whether it’s a product of our own nostalgia or an actual comment on quality remains to be seen, but there are certain cases where it really does ring true – games that haven’t been replicated since. TimeSplitters is a series that falls into the latter camp. Not only was it bizarre, fresh, and fun — it was a series I hold near and dear to my heart.
Games, games, games. So many games. Too many games? One could say so. I find myself constantly floating somewhere between fun, fatigue, and the finish line. It’s 2018 and not a week goes by without an exciting release! I’ve discussed this briefly before and it’s a sentiment that has run through many of my posts here, so I thought it would be worthwhile to really dig into it.
The tale of No Man’s Sky is, well, a tragic one. Unveiled in 2013 to widespread acclaim based solely on the trailer, it quickly escalated to the top of the PS4’s “most anticipated” list. It appeared to be a game that took elements from the survival genre and expanded them into an enormous, vibrant universe where anything was possible. Exploration looked pure and exciting, boasting hundreds, if not thousands, of intriguing creatures and anomalies at every turn. Unfortunately, come release day 2016, gamers quickly found that its limitless potential was, in fact, quite limited.
When I was a kid, I saved my allowance to get my hands on a pre-owned copy of Star Ocean: The Second Story. I had no clue why it was the “second story,” as I had never seen its predecessor anywhere, but I knew I had to have it. The PSX dream combo of sprites and 3D backgrounds brought to life a unique space-opera-at-the-corner-of-high-fantasy setting that fascinated my young mind. Swirl together the charming anime artwork with a battle system that felt somewhere between Tales and Grandia and I knew I had to have it.