The Summer Doldrums Continue

At the end of my last post (has it really been 8 days since the last one?) I’d said that I was going away for the long weekend, and that I didn’t know how much gaming I’d be doing.  As it turns out, I’ve played almost nothing.

(I’ve been reading a lot, though!  I think I’m finally at that stage of parenting where I’m not totally exhausted all of the time, and so I’ve been plowing through books lately.  Finished the first 2 books of Carsten Stroud’s Niceville trilogy (pretty good), and am currently about halfway through Joe Hill’s Heart-Shaped Box which is freaking me the fuck out.  He is very much an apple that has not fallen far from the tree, and that is one fucked-up tree.)  

I had hoped to finish A Story About My Uncle before leaving, but I got stuck in a particularly tricky section towards the end.  I tried picking it back up when we got back, though, and I made literally no progress, and instead just got more and more frustrated, and now I think I’m done with it.  Looking at certain Steam comment threads, I’m clearly not the only one who got stuck in this particular area, and so while there is obviously a light at the end of this tunnel, I’m not at all inclined to find my way out.  I’m stuck because this particular puzzle represents a rather sharp difficulty spike requiring mastery of a skill I’ve just been introduced to (i.e., swinging from falling stalagmites), and the incredibly dark lighting makes it very difficult to pick up targets – plus there’s a feeling of inconsistency in terms of how far away a target is.  The short version is that this particular platforming gauntlet is frustrating for all the wrong reasons, and that’s annoying, and now I don’t care if I finish the game or not.

Meanwhile, I’m looking at my backlog and feeling wholly unmotivated to go through it.  And there’s a bunch of stuff that I really ought to get back into, considering the current release drought we’re in – Transistor and Valiant Hearts immediately come to mind as PS4 titles I’ve picked up and put down.  Given that Oddworld: New & Tasty comes out in 2 weeks, I really ought to finish at least one of those before getting wrapped back up in Abe’s Oddysee.  As for my Steam Sale purchases, I may give the Ada chapter of Resident Evil 6 a look.

In other news, I’ve been going back and forth about getting an Xbox One.  I keep turning on my 360 every morning hoping to see this message about receiving a $75 credit if I upgrade, because I almost certainly would upgrade with that kind of incentive.  And yet it must be noted that I – a loyal, happy original Xbox and Xbox 360 customer – shouldn’t need to be so blatantly bribed in order to upgrade; and even if I went out and bought one today, I’m still not sure what I’d play on it (besides maybe Forza Horizon 2, Sunset Overdrive and the Halo Collection, none of which are available right this very minute).

And that’s basically that, folks.  I’ll have a new Gamemoir column up on Monday, and I need to get cracking on my piece for Videodame that got put on the shelf back in May.  I’ll also have an essay in an upcoming issue of Unwinnable Weekly that I’m pretty happy about; more details on that as they emerge.

Author: Jeremy Voss

Musician, wanna-be writer, suburban husband and father. I'll occasionally tweet from @couchshouts. You can find me on XBL, PSN and Steam as JervoNYC.

One thought on “The Summer Doldrums Continue”

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