Sunshine Blogger Award 7: Brought to you by Chives

As some of you will know I’ve been working through some issues with the demonic white goblin at home. This has hampered my ability to finish off a few of the posts I’ve been working on. As such I thought it might be nice to finally tackle one of the few remaining tag posts I had. These are typically lower effort given the person who tagged you did half the work for you by coming up with all the ideas in the various questions they asked. So without further adieu let’s get into another Sunshine Blogger post.

This time I was nominated, once again, by AK of Everything is bad for you. I don’t need to tell you who he is, but I’m going to anyway. AK writes quite regularly about anime, video games, and music. Despite our very different tastes, I always enjoy reading what he has to say about the video games he is playing as he covers genres I don’t typically enjoy. This gives me a bit of a window into what is otherwise one of the biggest blind spots I have within the medium. I can also confirm that everything he writes is extremely well written and articulate.

Go drop by and say hi. He doesn’t bite.

Skipping the rules as I don’t intend to follow them. Let’s get to the questions.

1) Are you buying or have you bought one of the new next-gen consoles, and if so, which? What factors played into your decision?

No.

For me the decision to skip Sony and Microsoft’s next box is always easy because I have a computer. I’d rather put money toward upgrading its internal parts over spending money on a console. I still find the user interfaces of the consoles extremely frustrating to navigate, paying for online is a scam, and PC is becoming the dumping ground for every game. Consoles are a really tough sell when I already have access to a rich multi-generational library without any bullshit.

2) Related to that, how much importance do you place on the specs of a new console?

A lot.

I always aim to keep my computer around what I’d consider to be midrange based on what’s presently available in the market. The reason for this is that most high end hardware features don’t get widely supported until consoles adopt them. I know it’s a bit of a meme, but I genuinely want to see more games use ray tracing and adaptive sync. I’m hopeful the new consoles supporting these features will help to make them more mainstream and ubiquitous in software going forward.

3) Are there any emerging technologies you’re especially excited to see develop? If so, what are they?

I guess my answer from the previous question counts here? I’d like to see ray tracing and adaptive sync make their way into more games so that both features become normalized rather than fringe tech that only a handful of games make use of.

Similarly, I’d like to see the use of rollback netcode normalized across the entirety of fighting games. Right now the only obstacle to this is Japanese fighting game developers who have a really strong case of not invented here when it comes to rollback. Hopefully the relative success of Guilty Gear Strive will help to change their tune on that front as Japan is the last bastion of fighting games without what has otherwise become an industry norm.

4) Is there an upcoming game, film, anime, or other work you’re especially looking forward to?

I suppose I’ll go with the easy answer: Hollow Knight Silksong. The rabid nature of people on social media with regard to Silksong is annoying as hell, but I’m still looking forward to the game. Hollow Knight was one of the genuine surprises of 2017 and spoke to my sensibilities in video games. It just lets the player figure things out on their own while exploring the game’s world. The game also avoided one of the biggest pitfalls of other Metroidvania games by giving players several valid routes to take after the opening meaning they spent more time exploring and less time trying to figure out where to go. It’s for these reasons that I’m hopeful Silksong will be a worthy successor.

I also wanted to include something a bit more fringe, so I’ll also mention N1RV Ann-A. I haven’t ever written a full article about VA-11 Hall-A, but it is genuinely one of my favourite visual novels because of how well realized the world and characters are. N1RV Ann-A is the sequel to it and, similar to Silksong, I’m hopeful that N1RV Ann-A will capture what I loved about the original game while delivering a similarly impactful experience. Unfortunately, I know N1RV Ann-A has gone through some development hell, which is never a good sign, but I’ve still got my fingers crossed for the full release.

5) Is there a genre (of game, novel, film, whatever) you liked as a kid but now dislike? Alternatively, is there a genre you disliked as a kid that you now like or at least appreciate more?

Role Playing Games.

I guess that’s not fair as I still enjoy RPGs, but what aspects of them I enjoy has shifted dramatically over the years. When I was younger I was quite content to play really grindy games, or otherwise replay Pokémon over and over and over again. Now I find that I get extremely bored of RPGs I used to enjoy playing and also find similar experiences equally boring. For a prime example of this just look at my Nexomon review from last year. That game is functionally identical to Pokémon and left me wanting.

There is also an expectation now that every RPG will be a long game. While I’m all for playing a dense game, I really wish that there were more role-playing experiences that clocked in at under the twenty hour mark. I feel like the popularity of games like Persona and The Elder Scrolls have warped the general perception that all RPGs need to be these fucking long games that take weeks to finish and I’m not about that. I’d like more Wildermyths and less Skyrims please and thanks.

6) We’ve probably all read, watched, or played through at least one story with a disappointing ending. Do you feel a poorly written ending hurts its entire work or series, and if so how much? Can you still enjoy or appreciate the work even if you feel the ending was lousy? (I think I’ve already written about this a bit, and I have a feeling I can guess what a couple of you will say to it, but still a question I’d like to throw out there because I think it’s an interesting one.)

Generally speaking I don’t think a flat ending can completely ruin a story, however it does leave a bit of a shit taste in your mouth. I suppose, like all things, it depends on how badly written the ending is in contrast to the rest of the story. If you just got through a really good story and it goes out on a wet fart that’d probably feel worse than if you read a middling story and it went out in a similarly disappointing fashion.

This topic could have an entire post written about it, but I lack the interest in exploring that topic so hopefully the express answer I gave will suffice.

7) Are there any good new blogs or sites you’ve found recently? I’m always looking for new reading material.

Yes, actually.

Abstracting Games and Atomic Bob-Omb are two of my more recent follows here on WordPress and they both produce some interesting articles. I hadn’t seen them in the wider blogging circles before so I don’t know how new either writer is, but hopefully that’ll suffice for new reading material.

8) Are you planning to return to the theater/cinema soon, or once you feel safe going (assuming you liked going in the first place?) Is there anything about the typical moviegoing experience you’d change? (I’m only familiar with the typical American experience, but I’m always interested in hearing about how it is in other countries. Do you have that fake liquid popcorn butter, or is that just us over here being extremely unhealthy as usual?)

Honestly, I’d love to but I don’t know that I’ll want to. Movie theatres are kind of gross to begin with so I don’t know that I’ll ever be able to bring myself to comfortably sit within one again in a post apocalypse world. This isn’t helped by it being cheaper to sit at home and watch a movie, which also avoids having to deal with one or more potential bad actors within the theatre.

Also, I assume the theatre experience is identical for the both of us owing to the United States not being all that different from Canada. Everything you mentioned is typical of the movies here.

9) Finally, a vital question, and one that I think might have been asked before, but if it’s not, I’ll ask now: what’s your opinion of pineapple on pizza?

I like pineapple on pizza.

Y’all can get fucked if you disagree.


Thank you for the nomination and questions AK. And thank you to anyone reading. I’ll see you in the next post.

2 thoughts on “Sunshine Blogger Award 7: Brought to you by Chives

  1. Thanks for the kind words! I hope I can live up to them properly.

    I really have to invest in a real gaming-level PC at some point, because I think you’re right here. Sony especially has been pulling some awful customer-confidence-destroying shit with the PS5. A shame, because so many of my favorite games of the last five or six years I played on the PS4, but I’ll absolutely be skipping the PS5 at this rate, and Microsoft’s consoles have never appealed to me at all. I might get a secondhand Switch at some point, but that’s about it.

    Silksong does look interesting. I haven’t played Hollow Knight but I’ve seen a few streams, and it looks challenging but the good kind, where you can actually learn the game as you go along. And I’m right there with you in waiting on N1RV Ann-A. It’s been “coming soon” on my Steam wishlist for at least a year now, but I’m still hopeful as well. A few of the characters in VA-11 Hall-A are among my favorites, and I hope Sukeban can deliver on that great writing again when they finally put N1RV Ann-A out.

    As much as I still enjoy RPGs, I have to agree that the genre is becoming a bit too much for me these days with my schedule as a working adult. Nothing wrong with a 50-60 hour game if the length can be justified, but saying “our game HAS to be x hours long because it’s an RPG” is ridiculous. Even a 20 or 30-hour game that can’t justify that length will feel a lot longer by comparison, especially if that length is mainly caused by the need to grind. And this all goes doubly for sandbox games like Skyrim.

    Regarding endings, I agree that it’s a matter of degree — the better the story was and the worse its ending, the worse the whole experience will be just because of what was “lost.” Definitely part of the reason so many people trashed Game of Thrones so harshly, but it’s far from the only example. To be fair, it’s probably hard to give people a surprising and fresh ending that doesn’t also piss some of them off, assuming that’s what you’re going for, but there are clever writers who can pull that off.

    And I’ve never even had pineapple on pizza myself, probably in part because that topping usually shows up on a Hawaiian pizza along with ham, which we never ate in my house. But it’s been interesting to see the strong responses both ways to this question. I can see how the flavor would contrast well with the cheese and all that, especially on a hot, fresh pizza. I’m determined to try it now.

    Finally, thanks for your answers — interesting as always. You’ve also reminded me that I have a couple of tag posts to answer as well, including one you tagged me on a month or two ago. I need to be less lazy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You don’t need to hope – I wouldn’t have said it if it wasn’t true already.

      There’s a lot of options for mid-range stuff and that’ll honestly cover you for most games. I assume you won’t magically overnight change your preferences in games so I doubt you need bleeding edge hardware for newer games coming out, plus most games on PC do have graphics options so you’re not strictly limited by hardware. I dunno. I’m probably really biased on this since I don’t find PC maintenance that difficult, so I’m always willing to go through the trouble over having a plug and play box (not that the consoles are truly that anymore).

      Don’t have much to say outside of a nod of agreement to most else with what you said haha. Though I will say the Hawaiian pizza thing is a huge meme at this point. I genuinely like pineapple on pizza because the sweet compliments the salty flavor of the meat really nicely. I don’t know that I’d want just pineapple to top my pizza, y’know?

      And no worries. I had been sitting on a few of these for months now. Your one here is one of the last few I had to get through. Usually save them when I need something quick and easy to fill a particularly large gap in posting while I’m working out other pieces of content.

      Liked by 1 person

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