time to play

I was a little disappointed that Tomb Raider for the PS4 was not out in time for the long weekend…not to mention Dishonored 2 and the updated version of Skyrim…all of which are due in October. Later in October when I probably won’t have as much time to play. On the other hand, it doesn’t really matter if I don’t get to play them on day 1, yet there is something of that sense of release day anticipation…still. I’m 48 now and I feel it at the edge of my consciousness: lurking, waiting, intensifying. It is the same of books, I have to have that book on day 1, first edition, etc…though I no longer necessarily read it that day.

Yet, day 1 desire remains.

I recently got round to playing The Last of Us, the PS4 remastered version of which was released in 2014…2 years ago, and the PS3 version was released before that. It was still a good game. Then there’s the Bioshock Collection, released in September on the PS4 yet been around for years on other platforms. I nearly bought it for the long weekend but thought no, I won’t finish all 3 by the time Tomb Raider is released. I can always play it later.

The PS3 version of Skyrim was a massive timesink and I spent over 300 hours playing it that summer. I may never have time to play that enough, nor even that amount of time to play. I was single and living alone in those days, now I have other, wonderful people in my life. I still fire up the PS3 and play a little Skyim every so often. Yet, I am also curious about starting from scratch on the PS4 and seeing what sort of game I’d play these days.

Instead, on the long weekend, I bought nothing new and enjoyed what I had. I continue to be rather fond of No Man’s Sky, though it’s more exploratory than actual game. It is strangely alluring and easy to lose many hours playing. I finally got round to playing The Order: 1886 which was generally panned on release as being short and lacking in the gameplay department. While gameplay is a little simplistic and full of detailed setpieces, it is visually sumptious and I’m hard put to think of a game that is so well realised in its visualisation of the environment. I’ve spent a lot of time just sitting back and viewing my surroundings. The story too, seems sufficient and I look forward to finishing it off.

Further to gaming I finally finished season 1 of Daredevil on Netflix which was pretty fab. I found the 13 episodes a little slow at times but the story and character development was good. I’m undecided whether to move to season 2, or watch season 1 of Jessica Jones next, and of course Luke Cage has recently dropped. I have at least read most of the comics for Jessica Jones. To top off a good three days off work, I also managed to get through the first half of season 2 of Once Upon a Time. Somewhere in there, I’d like to fit in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D but suspect I’ll need to buy the DVDs as it doesn’t seem to be on the Oz version of Netflix. I do have the DVDs for the first season of The Expanse and I’ve read the first two books.

So much to watch and play and yet I still hunger for day 1 releases. That’s a wee bit wrong.

five on a seat

With a heading like that, I feel like I’m channelling the Famous Five and that may yet lead me down an interesting path for headings…five take a flying jump and so on. Here’s another five articles of vague interest:

drive update

After many years living mostly alone, living with teenagers, aside from the regular challenges of living with teenagers, has some unexpected issues.

The hard drive on the PS4 was full! We had to delete stuff to add a game.

I’ve never had a full hard drive on a console before. I don’t buy enough games and I tend to play in spurts. Back in the day, I bought a second memory card (8MB per card) for the PS2 just in case, but never used it. The PS3 continues to power on. The Atari’s games are standalone cartridges, no save files whatsoever.

The PS4 has 500GB and Sony have just released an upgraded model doubling the hard drive to 1TB. However, I had heard it was possible to install a new drive yourself and sure enough Sony even provide instructions. Somewhere along the way, I came across someone who had installed a 2TB drive as they figured 1TB wasn’t big enough. Given we’ve filled a 500GB in less than 12 months, they might be right.

On Saturday, I popped down the road and bought a 2TB drive for the princely sum of $175. This thing was about the size of a credit card and as tall as a few stacked. Got home and did a full back of the current drive which alas takes several hours.

On Sunday morning,

  1. I slid the cover off the PS4
  2. undid 5 screws
  3. took out old drive
  4. put in new drive
  5. initialised and installed system from USB
  6. restored backup, which also took several hours

All went well. The instructions were easy to follow and the hardest bit of the drive swapping was finding a screwdriver small enough.

Then I installed the new Assassin’s Creed :)

shelf by shelf 8 – a sense of adventure

I think this shelf answers the question of whether I have clutter on my shelves :-)

One thing I try to do in some spots is leave space for expansion, however all the space here suggests I may have done some weeding. I suspect I’ve probably tossed Robert Ludlum’s stuff and a couple of other writers of similar vein. Matthew Reilly seems to have hit just the right spot with me in a way that Dan Brown completely failed to do. Reilly’s last book “The Tournament” I have in e and not p, though I wasn’t particularly keen on that one. Otherwise, his action adventures have all been fab.

Two copies of Point Break could be seen as excessive but I lovez it so, plus I decided to get the bluray version when it was cheap. I loved both the recent Tomb Raider on the PS3 and Far Cry 3. The last God of War was ok but hasn’t really grabbed me as much as earlier releases. Then there is the snail shaped garden light. The downside of everyone knowing my nickname is “snail” means that at birthdays and christmas, people who don’t me well tend to try and find snail things. Some friends and family are very good at it, some not so much. With that said, I think I have access to a garden these days where I may be able to place the light.

shelf by shelf 2 #blogjune

Across. Not down.

Having chosen a starting point, I had planned to continue down the shelves, library-style; books in their groupings. Instead it was suggested that I go across to mix things up a bit. I like the idea.

book shelfTwo of my favourite comics growing up, along with Asterix and Tintin, were The Wizard of Id and Captain America. I have collected many compendiums of the Wizard, mainly though secondhand shops, most are rather tatty. I have some nice editions of Cap that appear on a shelf elsewhere. There is perhaps a certain irony in the pairing of Cap and the Wizard.

I first got into computing in 1981 and with my second computer in 1984 (Commodore 64) I discovered Infocom and the delights of text adventuring, or interactive fiction is it later became known. I eventually collected all their games, as well as those of Level 9 and Magnetic Scrolls. I used to buy UK computer magazines purely to read their section on text adventures. Though I haven’t played any in years, I usually have the Infocom suite on at least one of my computers.

a little bit of tech

I bought my partner the latest version of Google’s Nexus 7 for chrissy. Over the last couple of months I have watched it in use and played with it myself. This thing is light and cute and fast and cute. Really. At that point, I was using my Transformer Prime mostly in tablet mode though I was finding it a little on the heavy side for reading the SMH in bed.

nexusI thought a new tablet might be in order and had a look at the smaller ipads, figuring it had been a while since I bought an apple :-) I didn’t mind them but they didn’t impress particularly and just didn’t look as cute as the nexus. So a couple of weeks ago I bought a nexus for me, having checked staticICE for a good price. The nexus has rarely been out of my hands since. It is the best tablet I have ever used; it’s fast and the screen looks fantastic. It’s light in my hand and all my usual apps are running well. The size is just about right too, though I think slightly smaller might be even better. Battery life is fab and it’s always close to hand so I’ve been picking it up for casual reading every other moment. It’s been a long time since I read the SMH* on a daily basis but now I’m downloading it via the app every morning and having a browse throughout the day.

When setting up the nexus I used the restore option from my gmail account which meant all the stuff I used on the tablet and the phone, both android, were automatically loaded on to the nexus, and importantly that included their settings. Wifi access is fantastic. There are spots in the house which I thought were unreachable on the house network but the nexus still manages to get a bar of connectivity. One of those spots is the bed. With the previous tablet, I used to use my phone as a wifi hotspot to download the papers, whereas the nexus is fine.

I’ve even bought some games…I came across a mention of an interesting game called The Room and paid a huge 99 cents for it. Very, very addictive. It’s a puzzle game though not excruciatingly hard. Atmospheric with a strong steampunk oriented look and feel. Satisfying. I have since paid $3 to buy The Room Two which I’m now in the middle of.

* I recently bit the bullet and took out a subscription to the digital edition of the SMH. I now have it installed on all my devices across mac, PC, and android.