My Experimental Interview with Trion and The Electric Steam Sale Experiment

Happy Friday, folks.

Today looks to be a beautiful day going into a great weekend. I’m a bit excited for tomorrow, actually. I’ll be doing a special podcast with the community team at Trion. What makes that even more exciting – or nerve-wracking – is that I’m going to be doing an experimental episode with them, more akin to This American Life than Rift Watchers. Thankfully Cindy and Zann will be there, and they’re both genuinely nice and fun to talk to. The three others coming along I haven’t met, though I know Amary from the forums. You probably do, too; she does the patch notes.

I’ve actually not played RIFT much lately. I was edging into a break about two weeks ago, and the Steam sale pretty much decided for me. It’s a great game, the most sticky I’ve played since WoW, and I’d hit it hard over the last three months. I hit 50, got myself nearly done with the first set of plaque gear, and realized that the next step was raiding. That’s great, but if I followed that path, I would have burnt out. No doubt about it. So I’m taking things easier, enjoying some next games, and —

Watching Netflix on my 3DS. Say whaaaat. But it’s true, as of today the Nintendo 3DS is worth owning. Ocarina of Time almost got us there, but today was a big step forward, and the recent additions to the e-shop provide a lot of options.

Now, some of you may be wondering why I put so much emphasis on the Netflix over, say, the game library (not entirely, the game library right now). The answer is pretty simple, and married men represent: I have a wife. And being that my wife enjoys a handful of programs I do not, I’m now explore my queue instead of probing the intricacies of Seattle Grace Hospital. Plus, I don’t have an iPhone, so this is rather new for me.

Anyways, this Steam sale got the best of me. I was on a music kick this year and purchased both Beat Hazard and The Polynomial. Beat Hazard is a mix of Space Invaders and Audiosurf; it’s a dual-stick shooter where the levels, incredible firework-like visuals, and the power of your weapons are based on the song you’re listening to. The Polynomial is a first-person flight shooter where you’re music helps generate an amazing space arena. It’s essentially what every former hippy wishes they’d had in the 70s, except that it’s filled with vampire-ball monsters and weird space-jellyfish (see trailer).

I also picked up Batman: Arkham Asylum, a game I owned and traded in on the PS3, purely to check out the 3D. It was a pretty big deal for nVidia when it came out, what with achieving the prestigious “3D Ready” label from the company. For $7.50, it was an absolute steal. I’m playing with an Xbox 360 controller and – no exaggeration – the 3D effect is an absolute game-changer. The added depth skyrockets immersion more than you’d believe. Playing through the game seems more like watching the world’s most elaborate dolls in an amazing set rather than animated models. It’s hard to describe, but everything just seems much more solid.

The silence in here has gone on long enough that I feel something has to be said. I’ve been reticent to post over the last few months for a reason I hope that no one takes offense to: Once you’ve been around for a while, it seems like every argument has been stated already. The blogoverse is starting to seem pretty cyclical and instead of coming up with new ways to participate in those conversations, I’ve simply been watching them play out while re-investing in what made me want to blog in the first place.

I love games. MMOs, single-players, arena shooters, and casuals alike. I appreciate the since of youthful exuberance a new game brings me, the excitement of the build-up, and the sneaky ways a good in-game narrative can swoop in and hit you harder than any movie or TV show. Suffice it to say that I’m not going anywhere 😉


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