And so here we are, finally, the first Monday in Trump’s America. We are expecting Nor’easter-ish conditions here in the NYC region, which seems fitting.
I don’t necessarily want to turn this blog into a political soapbox, but these are strange times, and like it or not, Trump’s current employment is going to affect us all one way or the other. (I cannot and will not call him President.) While I understand the impulse to say “Hey, man, leave politics out of it, you’re talking about games and music and books,” the truth of the matter is that Trump’s decisions are absolutely going to affect games and music and books. Not just in terms of their subject matter, but – in more practical terms – they may very well affect our ability to purchase games and music and books. Because unless you are a (white, male) billionaire, life is about to get more difficult, whether you like it or not.
And the thing is, Trump and his cronies are legitimately frightening, while also being incredibly ridiculous. It is hard to take ridiculous things seriously, and yet we as a nation have to take them seriously, because otherwise the truly frightening fascistic shit will get lost in the shuffle. So while we’re all enjoying a laugh at the insanity of Kellyanne Conway presenting “alternative facts” as a sublime bon mot, let’s not forget that it’s only been 72 hours and the Trump administration is already preparing to leave the United Nations, renegotiate NAFTA, and go into full-bore isolationist mode. Oh, and that whole healthcare thing… that’s gonna fuck everybody up, too, including people who already have healthcare through their jobs.
In any event: I despaired on Friday, but after seeing the enormity of the protests on Saturday, I am inspired and rejuvenated.
To that end, I spent last night replaying Wolfenstein: The New Order, because suddenly killing Nazis is cathartic again. I wrote about this the last time I played it, and it’s still true. Given that one of the highlights of this weekend was seeing alt-right neo-Nazi Richard Spencer get punched in the face, and then having that punch become a viral meme, I felt that it was my patriotic duty as an American to get my Nazi-killin’ skills in good shape. I’m still a pacifist, I still hate guns, I still feel a little weird about the shooter genre, but I will always, always, always have room in my heart to mow down some Nazis.
If I’m honest with myself, I should probably concede that I have not yet spent enough time with my PSVR to fully justify the expense of owning it. And yet, my brother and his fiancee hung out with us over the weekend (they were escaping DC, as it were), and I got to blow their minds with that shark tank demo, and that in and of itself is justification enough.
I also dabbled in some other VR experiences; I gave Bound another look, and the difference between Bound in regular mode vs. VR is night and day. It’s still a bit weird, but the visual experience is nothing short of breathtaking. Similarly, I finally unlocked the fabled “Area X” mode in Rez Infinite, and all I can really say about that is wow. Good lord.
I continue to screw around with my backlog, and I continue to find myself drawn towards replaying old favorites in lieu of playing new stuff. I am having a very difficult time getting into Final Fantasy XV, and Dishonored 2 is also a bit of a struggle (although in that case it’s more that I’m just not very good at it, and while I want to be able to sneak around I end up having to kill everyone, and it becomes a bit of a drag). I’m also having the same problem with Watch Dogs 2, actually, except I really don’t care about getting into gunfights, even though I feel like I should.
And yet I am more than happy to revisit The Witcher 3, and Rise of the Tomb Raider, and such. Those games are still great, and given that time remains something of a limited resource, I’d rather spend my time enjoying what I’m doing than not. It’s an indulgent attitude, I suppose, but these are strange and difficult times, and one has to find happiness where one can.