Friday, April 10, 2020

Computer Gaming in the Age of Social Distancing

Yeah, this is a thing that exists apparently
The new joke these days is that with social distancing a thing, we find people fall in to two camps:
   1. The group that is learning to cope with social distancing; 
   2. and Gamers.

As such, I've actually been getting more gaming done overall than I am used to. Traditionally when it comes to the computer games side of the equation I've been more of a "collector" and less of an actual player in the last few years, especially with work absorbing more of my time both on business hours and off business hours. But....with the rise of social distancing prodding me to be home more consistently, and also with a convenient library of literally hundreds, perhaps thousands of games at my disposal, getting some gaming in has become much easier. 

You'd think that with my son, at age 8, I'd find more time to game with him as well....but you'd be wrong. My son loves certain games which he obsesses over (when he's not being home schooled, which is a Real Deal for him since his mom is a teacher by trade and his father was also home schooled so for him There Is No Escape). His preferred titles are Subnautica, Fortnite, Minecraft, Pokemon (pick your flavor), and every FNAF (Five Nights at Freddy's) title and their pastiche spawn on the planet. While he and his mom can enjoy Pokemon together, the only common family game is Fortnite right now....and to be honest, we're all already Level 100+ and more or less tired of Fortnite right now.*

For me, it's been a chance to explore the many weird indie tites I keep finding on the Nintendo Switch. The great thing about these indie game that make it on the Switch is that they often tend to be very concise, short experiences which you can get through in one or two nights. On occasion they might take longer, or aspire to compete with the big boy AAA gaming industry in terms of depth of content or longevity of play, but ultimately a good indie game succeeds on its own merits as an experience to be enjoyed and sometimes remembered.

Since I'm actually getting to play these games I think I'll start posting some blog reviews....especially of the fun titles that you can enjoy and maybe even find a little escape into; games that are not "generic military shooter" types, if you know what I mean....I mean, I hate to say it but as much as I've enjoyed a game series like The Division, I have felt zero interest in playing it since the pandemic began. 

Anyway....look for some of these reviews next week! I've already got some stuff to say on Abzu, The Long Reach, Dead Cells, Grimvalor and Risk of Rain 2....and some not so nice things to say about a few titles as well (I'll put all the negative reviews in one post as I rarely make it past 2 hours in a game I quickly learn to hate). 

*Yes, that means my January predictions Fortnite would stop being a thing in the house were immediately proven wrong.  

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