I roleplay a wordsmith that writes about the technological and social evolution within the game industry
When looking deeper into the soul of Apex Legends it shouldn’t come as a surprise that this old school PVPer is feeling at home, it has everything I've always loved at a fast food place. My age and reflexes aren't overly fond of that pace nor the fact that it's yet another FPS with a battle royale gimmick bolted on but I digress.
This week I’m going to cover two games. One deserves it because of what they have accomplished both in game and as a professional game studio. The other, its free PVP and sometimes a fella needs a fix! I’m talking about the dark horse of the MMORPG genre Dual Universe and the lovechild of Halo and Titanfall Apex Legends!
The gaming industry is a savage one, both in competition between publishers and in the endless creative ways they invent to take our money. From WOW came the WOW clones and from Fortnite comes the Fotniteclones...or should I say the DayZ clones...or the H1Z1 clones...or the RUST clones...or the PUBG clones or....well, you get my point. Like sharks to chum big publishers; race to get a bite before the battle royale cosmetic cash shop with a “limited edition” whale gimmick gets gobbled up!
There was a time when I would look down on an Online Dungeon Crawler like Torchlight Frontiers. My taste in MMORPG’s was very specific. I knew what I wanted and if it didn’t fit my specs I wouldn’t give it a look. What a narrow view that was. It cost me many decent MMORPG experiences and people that I would have shared them with.
During the coldest times of the year, we of the artic regions tend to roll a huge snowball in front of our ice shanties, grab a big ole slab of moose shank, hunker down next to the heat coming off our PC’s and game away. This season I was able to dabble in Fortnite, spoil myself with the bliss that is the Nintendo Switch and finish up with the new American Classic, Red Dead Redemption 2. Looking at the calendar and seeing a solid four more months of winter left I have to ask myself, what’s next?
As is the way of the wild west, each gunslinger eventually takes one last ride into a sunset they call the used to be. My time with Red Dead Redemption 2 has nearly come to an end. I see the conclusion but have yet to pursue it. This struck me as a good time to do a reflections piece on some of the areas that I’d like to see improved upon.
Two weeks ago, the fans of this site got to look behind the curtain of the MMORPG news media and they didn’t like what they saw. Factual, admittedly heavy-hearted coverage led to the revocation of access. I’d hoped to move beyond that subject this week but, with my integrity called into question, I feel an explanation of the writing process is owed to our readers.
I always knew Chronicles of Elyria was going to be a dramatic ride. It had a fiery studio lead that was mad at the current system and wanted to rebuild it from the ground up! The pitch for the game was as audacious as any I’d seen brought to Kickstarter. I went in cautiously with the assumption they would either pull a Han Solo, damn the odds and find a way, or go down in flames. Either way, I was willing to observe and lend a hand (or a handful of money).
While I've taken greater efforts to produce more honed work I feel this format is necessary once a year, generally at the beginning. Call it a digital fire-side chat if you will. One in which I can remove the mask of professionalism and have a bit of a heart-to-heart with the readers that enable me to have what was and is an enjoyable job.
Forty-eight percent. That's how far I am in Red Dead Redemption 2 and yet it feels like there's so much more game that I have yet to discover, some might even say fifty-two percent more... I've just begun to play with the skill challenges. In Read Dead, I don't mind them. In fact, they are a nice simple reprieve from the storyline content and fit well into the random stuff gameplay rotation I adore.
I paid for season 6 Season Pass for two reasons. One, I wanted to understand this phenom. Two, I felt the aesthetics of 6 fit both the game, placing emphasis on its positives, as well as the time of year. Fall has always been known for two things, hunting season and gaming season. As weather forces us inside our thirst for quality games to head back out into the unexplored deepens. Fortnite served its purpose by quenching my thirst.
I've never played a lot of games. What I mean is I've never been a variety gamer, at least not since Blockbuster was cool. (Pours libations for the smell of a Blockbuster that happened to have a Pizza place next door.) While I don't play a variety of games, the ones I do play I adore. I don't just adore them, I crawl into them like Tom Hanks in Castaway and let them live in my head - rent free.
The long-standing problem with every game ever made is a little thing called diminishing returns. This issue is especially prevalent in shooters because the players race through the exact same gameplay loop ad nauseam. This is why shooters tend to launch hot and quickly burn through their player base which, in the modern game saturated climate, is more than happy to hop onto the next latest greatest thing.