My Sim is Making More Money Than Me

One of my favourite ways to play The Sims is to create a character with no job and no fixed address to see if I can get by napping on park benches (or wherever I can lay my Sim’s head down for a bit), cadging food from public venues (someone is always grilling at the park), and fishing, picking public produce, and foraging for treasure to sell for simoleons.

A Sim does have to have an address, so mine is usually a lot empty of all but a mailbox. Over time, I’ll add stuff to the lot using funds derived from foraging. I take great pleasure in using the startup funds assigned to every Sim to buy the largest empty lot in the best neighborhood, decorating it with weeds, and letting it lie empty but for the objects I begin to collect. I’ll construct a sort of shed as the budget allows, and if my Sim is a Klepto, stock it with lots of fun stuff.

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The Good Ending

Recently, I replayed Metro: 2033 with little doubt I’d get the good ending. I knew all about the hidden morality system and had confidence that I’d be able to work it to my advantage. I got the bad ending. Since, I’ve been wondering why—and what my ending says about me.

In the case of 2033, I didn’t accrue enough moral points to unlock the choice at the end. The bad ending comes without a choice; the good ending comes with a choice to take a chance or let the bad ending happen. I think it must have been close. Throughout my playthrough, I stunned where I could—rather than kill—and when given the option to do a good deed, I generally did it. I listened to conversations and tried to interact with NPCs. I found hidden items. But I didn’t do enough, and the question of why has a pretty easy answer.

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What the Actual @#%&?

Part three of my series on (relatively) recent gaming disappointments. Part one covered Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. Part two covered Outer Worlds.

There’s a board game I love that no one else in the family ever wants to play. It’s called Iron Dragon, and whenever I suggest a round, everyone groans. Part of it is that the game takes at least four hours to play. Usually more. Okay, a lot more. Another part is the absolute tedium of it. You start out with a small train and a bag of money. You draw a card listing a series of destinations, the cargo they’re after, and how much they’re willing to pay. Then you plan your route accordingly, building track as you go. First player to connect six cities wins.

Playing well—and winning—requires a careful balance of risk vs reward as well as luck. I love it. Planning out my routes and calculating exactly how much it’s going to cost me to build the track there. How much I’ll make by connecting the dots.

Continue reading “What the Actual @#%&?”

Where’s the Rest of It?

Part two of my series on (relatively) recent gaming disappointments. Part one covered Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.

The title of this blog post gives away my biggest disappointment regarding the otherwise fantastically entertaining game, Outer Worlds. But before I get into the ugly, let’s talk about the good and not-so-good. (No real spoilers follow except the fact the game was a lot shorter than I expected it to be.) Continue reading “Where’s the Rest of It?”

It’s Not You, It’s Me. Or Is It?

Late last year, I bowled through three of my most anticipated games in a matter of weeks, emerging on the other side somewhat disappointed and quite disillusioned. The critics loved these games. They were winning awards. But they weren’t winners for me. The question was, why?

We’ll start with the biggest meh of all—Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

This is the trailer that sold me on the game. Continue reading “It’s Not You, It’s Me. Or Is It?”