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No spoilers. Precious little wrapping up, either, to be honest.

Butch:

Ok, so I was thinking. We have no time to play for a while here, right? We need something to talk about. So I thought that, as we have over 100 followers, that makes us “legit” and “legit” sites have things they do, so we might as well put our erudite yet slightly distracted spin on such things that “legit” sites do.

So, with no further ado, I present the first ever

PLAY FIRST TALK LATER YEAR IN REVIEW

in which we try to remember what we forgot, misremember the stuff we do remember, and, probably, derail completely around 10:38 AM.

Anyhoo, I’ll start with some observations about the year that was in no particular order.

1) So this year we kinda got out of our comfort zone. We didn’t play a single AAA role playing game. Our biggie was Divinity, an indie, AA thingy. We played a bunch of games that we wouldn’t have played at all had they not been free. And, what do you know, we wound up liking things a hell of a lot more than we thought we would. Interestingly, the dud of the year had to be Heavy Rain, a game that was heralded as a narrative masterpiece, and a game I had actually been looking forward to playing someday because, you know, story. I think, maybe, we have been too rigid in our comfort zone. We cast a bigger net this year, and it paid off.

2) I noticed this year that the blog really has changed, not just how I play games (watching things with an eye as to how we’d talk about them has been going on a while now), but how I pick the games to play in the first place. A big part, sometimes the biggest part, of why I want to play a game is I think it would be cool to talk about. That’s pretty cool. It’s like this blog about our hobby has become a hobby in itself. Hobbyception. Are we blogging cuz we play or playing so we can blog? Or both? Both.

3) I can’t tell if gameplay is in a creative rut, a technical rut developers think we don’t want any real innovation, but gameplay is in a rut. TR was the one current game we played this year, and, while it did look pretty as hell (especially on my set up), the gameplay was, let’s face it, just like the gameplay in Mafia or the old uncharteds or anything. Beyond’s gameplay was just like Heavy Rain, which came out years before. I wonder why. Is this just games “codifying” their rules, like movies and books? Is it technical? Is it laziness? Dunno. But that consistency is there, it seems. For now.

(We’ll talk about what’s past “for now” tomorrow on our first ever

PLAY FIRST TALK LATER’S PREDICTIONS FOR NEXT YEAR

cuz that’s what “legit” sites do. It’s gonna be great.)

Ok, let’s start there. Respond, remember, reminisce, derail.

Feminina:

Ooh, a year-end wrap-up! Classy!

I dunno, though, I feel like our comfort zone has always included random stuff that we could play for free (see for example over the years: Valiant Hearts, Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture, Gone Home, Transistor, Remember Me in my case and Day of the Tentacle in yours) and that we sometimes liked and sometimes didn’t and were sometimes surprised by. We’ve always been more flexible than the assumption that “we mostly play AAA RPGs” suggests, it’s just that usually…there’s a AAA RPG we’re interested in, and that sucks up our time!

I think the main thing going on this year was just that there wasn’t anything big we wanted to play, after the biggish Divinity (I think we spent enough time on that to call it a big game. We’ll play the sequel someday. When we’re ready to pour another few months into it).

And not having something big we wanted to play meant we had a lot of time after Divinity to just watch PS+ for things we might have heard of and possibly even wanted to play at some point but hadn’t gotten around to. It was kind of nice, really, to have the option to dig into a bunch of things.

2018: the year when no one released anything we cared about, and it worked out great!

Butch:

Yeah, but we played these as choice A. It wasn’t “well, we have a week of down time.”

And I agree. Nice to plow through the backlog, especially…I’ll save that for later.

Anyhow, what’s your list?

Feminina:

Microsoft’s suggested responses:

“Here’s my list.”
“I will send you the list.”
“I’ll make a list.”

So basically several levels of immediacy, from “here you go!” to “that exists but I’ll have to find it,” to “I’ll be sure to get on that at some unspecified point in the future.”

None of them covers my actual response: list of what? Were we doing a top 10 of something?

Also, it doesn’t even hint at my response to the earlier paragraph, which is that if I recall correctly, many of those games actually WERE because of downtime. We didn’t pick up Day of the Tentacle because it was Choice A, dude.

Well, I didn’t. As we know, you’re the one who actually finished it, so maybe it WAS the one thing you particularly wanted to play at that time, and if we’d had a new Dragon Age sequel right then you totally would have left it on the shelf in favor of…that. No judgment! (Judgement.)

But anyway, I remember Valiant Hearts and Transistor were things we specifically played over the summer while waiting for…what was it…DAI, maybe? That would be fitting, since I was just talking about a Dragon Age sequel.

So we have a history of this sort of thing.

My list is…somewhere.

Butch:

No, man, I was like, “Ok, you give me your wrap up!” That’s also part of the trendy thing! The game sites all let all the writers write their own little blurbs! It’s like a wistful listicle! Which would be a great name for a rock band! I did three blurbs!

Blurb, dammit! BLURB!

(Dear readers: we’ve never done a year end retrospective before. There is a learning curve.)

Feminina:

Oh, you mean a wisticle?

Heh.

Uh…reflections from the year. Hm.

1) Co-op games can be a great opportunity for shared fun and togetherness as a couple, but scheduling regular playing time can threaten to drive a terrible wedge between the members of said couple.

2) …working on it, but distracted by job stuff at the moment. More later. Or never. 

Butch:

We’ve devolved into relationship advice.

This did not go how I envisioned. I should have known.

Our predictions for next year post is gonna be great.

I’m sure of it.

Feminina:

That’s not relationship advice, that’s genuine game-related information that I legitimately learned during the year! That happens to be relevant to relationships.

Butch:

Still. Tag it relationship advice. We need more tags.

Feminina:

We do already have a home maintenance tag. Why not relationship advice?

Butch:

Dude, if the two of us somehow managed to do “fitness,” we can do anything.

Feminina:

2018: the year we learned that we can do anything! 

Not, you know, WELL. But we can do it. That’s inspirational or something.

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