Friday, May 18, 2012

My Summer is Off to a Sluggish Start

The summer, it drains all motivation from me.

The first week after I graduated, man, I was off to a great start. I was working hard on my website and stuff, and I was doing things, and it was great. But then it set in. You know, IT. That feeling of, "Hey, I don't need to be anywhere today, why don't I just watch TV shows and play video games and not wear clothes, all at the same time?"

And it hit me hard this last week. Work on my website has come to a stand-still, but I promise I will be back fixing it again soon. (Who exactly am I promising right now? Myself? I never keep promises to myself.) I stopped blogging (again) for like a week. And I promised myself (seriously why do I keep doing that?) that this would be the summer of production! The summer where I worked and made games the whole time, games that I could show off and put in my portfolio release on the internet for free to the masses! That's been a little slow coming too.

But maybe I just needed a break. Going straight from the final stretches of Water Aloft the Ridge to graduation to full blown portfolio/resume/website work might not have been the best idea. Maybe I needed a break. Maybe I'm taking that break now.

Also, maybe my huge backlog of bought-but-never-played games was nagging at me too hard to ignore. All this year I've been buying games like crazy whenever they were on sale, but didn't have time to play most of them. So right after graduation, I started up inFamous 2 (which I bought back on Black Friday but never even opened) and powered through that one in probably less than a week? Maybe a little more. Who cares.

The same day I beat inFamous 2, I decided to start playing The Tiny Bang Story, an indie adventure game that was part of some adventure game sale on Steam a few weeks (or months) ago. I'm really glad I played it, too. This game was less like a traditional adventure game and more like an interactive I Spy book with some devious puzzles mixed in.

How many hidden jigsaw puzzle pieces can you find? No seriously, that's like a majority of the gameplay.
Aside from some seriously desk-punchingly hard puzzles, the game was really simply and just, overall, cute and enjoyable. A great relaxation game.

After finishing that game in a day and a half, I went to another game that was part of the same package, Machinarium. A little more traditional of an adventure game, it was still really enjoyable. And I got through it a little easier than The Tiny Bang Story. I only had to look up the solution to two of the puzzles for this game! I would have been more, but some of the puzzles in Machinarium were almost exactly the same as ones in The Tiny Bang Story. Weird.

All of the art and animation in this game is ridiculously good.
I busted through Machinarium in one big, fat, lazy day, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Except for that fucking Bird on a wire puzzle. Fuck you, bird.

You're cute, but still go fuck yourself.
The day after I beat Machinarium (uh, I should just say today), I started playing Gemini Rue. This game was also part of the same indie adventure pack as the previous two games. This game is old school as hell, and I mean that in the way that I dislike the most.

Dem pixels.
Unlike The Tiny Bang Story and Machinarium, where one click interacts in whatever way makes sense, in Gemini Rue you have menus. Lots of menus. Its a game where you have to click on something, and then click on what you want to do to that something, only to have your character tell you they don't feel like doing that right now. One of those games.

Its also very slow and, after playing The Tiny Bang Story and Machinarium, both of which had no dialogue, kind of boring. The one thing that might keep me playing is the fact that this game has combat. An adventure game with combat is... so weird, I want to keep playing to see if it works.

But, I probably shouldn't keep playing. I'm kinda adventure-gamed out, and I should probably do some real work.

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