I’m just writing to report that I am still mired in that weird space between not caring much about any new game that is scheduled to drop, and being faced with several cases where new games or updates to games are scheduled to drop and I feel that I’m just hanging around, waiting.
I am still engaged with Crowfall to an extent. Our guild has become a bit more silent in Discord than it had been during launch week, and I’ve mostly seen “regulars” online when I am. We had a guild harvesting night last Tuesday night, and might have another tonight…we’re not quite all on the same page for that. Thing is, without a reliable group presence in the game, I spend most of my time harvesting; a necessary activity not just for those who like crafting in MMOs, but for everyone in the guild on account of how many resources are needed to craft the the most basic, competent gear items. Needless to say, this is getting kind of old, kind of fast. I did manage to make a new 2-handed axe for my Champion which is better than the found item I had been using, but I also managed to make a plate breastplate for the Champ that was worse in all ways except durability, which in Crowfall is nothing to sneeze at.
Next up is the New World “closed” beta. I had pre-indicated-interest back when the game was announced, but couldn’t remember putting money down so as everyone in my TL was chiming in about their code emails arriving in their inboxes for the event, I was convinced that I did not, in fact, pay for the game and would not be getting an email. I was actually OK with that. I participated in the New World alpha tests, and I really liked the aesthetics and their crafting and harvesting system, but as I can’t remember anything about their combat system and only remember a string of “go here and get X of Y” style quests, being content with NoFOMO was surprisingly easy. Then I received a key for the beta test; apparently my intent to order way back when was still in good standing, and Amazon informed me that I’d be charged for the game when it goes live on August 31. Meanwhile, I think I’ll skip this beta test, and will probably give the game a spin when it releases, although I can’t commit to playing more than my interest will allow, despite the apparent fact that many folks in my TL are interested in playing. I have learned that parallel interest is not enough to keep me engaged. If we were all playing together, that would be another conversation entirely.
And finally, there’s the “Pi Update” to Star Citizen, patch 3.14 which is going to totally mess everyone up. 3.14 is adding capacitors to ships, which means that between three major systems — weapons, shields, and engines — there will be a limited amount of power, and it’s going to be up to the pilot to determine which system(s) are most important in any given situation so as to distribute that power accordingly. Missiles are getting an overhaul, giving them AI and a three-stage lifecycle. Some ships are getting a new HUD system which makes the display more modular, allowing the UI team to craft different look and feel for different ship manufacturers. And a reckoning is coming for all ships, reducing the ability to apply a single ship to a wide range of situations, resulting in a salty system in which each ship will no longer be a “jack of all trades”, along with a tossing of shields and weapon performance. Most importantly (to me, at least) is the release of the last habitable zone in the Stanton system, Orison. Orison is a floating platform city in the atmosphere of the gas giant, Crusader, owned by the company of the same name and manufacturer of my current favorite ship, the Star Runner. While technically a floating city is just a really low-orbit space station, Crusader-the-Planet got a face-lift with the introduction volumetric clouds V1, meaning that to get to Orison one must pass through an apparently delightfully lit atmosphere that slowly reveals the destination in the distance. I say “apparently” because although I could log into the public test server to check out the changes right now, I am so excited about experiencing Orison for the first time that I don’t want to ruin it with whatever jank the PTU would produce. I have also been avoiding videos and screen-shots of the location in the meanwhile.
Despite not feeling the urge to keep up with the latest raft of game releases, or to game in general, I find myself curiously on edge waiting for just a handful of very specific, very long-term products. There’s no “I didn’t see that coming!” titles that are catching my fancy, no impending release of AAA, AA, or A-list titles that I am following. I have stocked my Steam wishlist with many off-the-radar games, most of which don’t have a release date, but I couldn’t name any of them without looking. It’s a very strange sensation to only have a limited focus now considering the bulk of my gaming life has been spent weeding through release schedules, announcements, and Big Company events to make a planned schedule for what’s releasing when and noting when pre-orders begin. That’s it; that’s the punchline. It’s just weird.