Out Damn’d Spot

Happy Weekend TAY!

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So, what’s the plan for the weekend? I know I’ve got some yard work and shopping planned, but there will be some fun in there as well. This weekend we are going to show my son Back To The Future for the first time and I’m eager to see what he thinks of it.

Happy people on the right side. Fight brewing over the atomic weight of kryptonite on the left.

Last weekend my city had their first “gaming convention”. I use the quotation marks because the event was basically just vendor tables and little else. There were some small retro gaming stations going on and Extra Life was there but, for the most part, it was all stuff for sale soaked in a flea market vibe.

We ended up with some zombified game character portraits from Rob Sacchetto who does some amazing zombie art. The other great artist was Glitch Artwork where I bought a Super Mario World 3d shadowbox which now has a wonderful home in my mancave.

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The stellar catch (if it is functioning) is the Rock Band Stage Kit. Currently, it will only work with the Rock Band 3 setup in our basement but the new PDP legacy wired adapter (that is coming soon) should add support for Rock Band 4 on the Xbox One. We can’t wait to set it up, having lights triggered by music and the haze from the smoke machine should be very cool.

As for the week in gaming, I had a trying time.

I was playing Rust most of the week and what a hateful time that was. Rust in its current incarnation is broken as there seems to be no way to protect your character when you log off. When you log out of Rust your character goes to sleep and you are vulnerable to looting and death if you are not well protected. It would seem that unless you are in a group of people housed in one of the few massive fortresses that there is no way to protect yourself once you leave the game. You can build a tough dwelling with many defenses and have it locked up nice and tight, however, it seems that weaponry strong enough to crack open houses is plentiful and easy to obtain.

It is frustrating and ultimately futile to keep playing a game that basically makes you restart it every time you play it. There are hours of resource collecting involved in getting to a semi-sustainable point in Rust and there is nothing more tiresome than having to repeat the same five hours over and over.

The other aspect of Rust that disappoints is the other players. I’m generalizing of course, but the majority of my experiences across a handful of servers was pretty gross. The amount of hateful and racist signs people make is only part of the problem. Many of the people in chat are even worse. The racist talk is common and the amount of homophobic chatter is disturbing. Add to this that almost everyone you meet will screw you over and lie to you; it is hard to keep your chin up. Of course, this is part of the “charm” of rust (the screwing people over, not the racist/homophobic garbage) but the game really starts to wear you down when you combine all these issues. And I get it, you can draw a penis on a sign. *Sigh*...the whole landscape is covered in baby’s first graffiti.

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I began to find myself in a bad mood while I was outside the game. I would constantly wonder if my character was dead and all my loot jacked. It was unnerving to not know my status after all the time I spent trying to secure myself before logging off. I could see people never wanting to log out of Rust because of this issue. No matter how hard I tried to hide my house and how many defenses I put up, I was always dead and burglarized when I logged back in.

It is a shame, I really enjoy the overall game in Rust and I think the social experiment is somewhat exciting. I imagine I can start searching for servers that have better moderation, though the ones I have been playing on are official servers and there would appear to be no moderation at all.

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Rust is still in alpha after all this time and I imagine that is because the overall system is broken. There is yet another update coming that will again radically change the major systems in the game. The XP system is being nerfed and the crafting system is receiving a major overhaul. These crafting changes are supposed to prevent the mass creation of high powered (house-cracking) weaponry. It is thought that this will prevent some of the pillaging and murdering of sleeping players. I’m disappointed that they don’t seem to be addressing structural durability (which needs at least a tenfold increase), but hopefully these changes will make the game more palatable.

At this point I’ve given up Rust, there seems no point in continuing. I’ll definitely revisit it after the major update, but I’m not sure there is any cure for the toxic environment. I’ll see if anyone around TAY wants to revisit Rust with me when the new system is implemented. The game is skewed heavily towards group play instead of solo play and it would be nice to play with less hate filled people.

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So, I left the troubles of Rust and started a new abusive relationship with Dying Light on Nightmare mode.

I began Dying Light about a year ago on Twitch. I found Twitch ruined the atmosphere of Dying Light when played with the public (and their incessant need to spoil everything for the people playing). Dying Light was the game that drove home the point that I don’t have the temperament for Twitch and that playing a game in that type of forum was not for me.

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I originally started Dying Light on Normal since that would play better for Twitch (more flow, less dying) and my partner wasn’t really into hard games. Thankfully I didn’t get too far in the game on Twitch.

Now with some time passed and restarting from the beginning, it feels like a brand new experience especially since I’m playing on the newer Nightmare mode.

Nightmare mode was designed by the devs to be played as a New Game+ mode for players with more advanced weaponry, but I think it is the way to play the game right off the bat. Kudos to Techland for not locking the highest difficulty level as so many games seem to do. I hate having to play a game on an easier mode to unlock the difficulty mode I really want to play on. Most of the time I only play a game once and often I don’t get the challenge I was looking for because devs somehow think they know me better than I do myself.

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By now, most of you who have read my weekend ramblings know that I have a proclivity for tough games. I try to play games on as hard a difficulty as my aging reflexes will allow. More than tough, I like my games to make me feel afraid or tense and that’s what Dying Light is doing on Nightmare mode.

I’m terrified everywhere I turn. Even the most basic of encounters can get me killed if I don’t keep my head about me and resources seem tougher to find. The best part is that there is now a penalty for death. You lose all the experience points that you were building towards your next level when you die. This is a great addition since prior to Nightmare mode there was no punishment for dying. A game that makes me fear death gives me the greatest rush.

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I’m excited to play more Dying Light this weekend and hopefully we’ll have success rocking out to our Rock Band Stage Kit. It is a used kit but it was a crazy bargain, so fingers crossed that it is all still functional.

Meathead373 will be your host again next weekend as my father is having his 70th birthday and I’ll be away for the better part of a week. Thanks Meathead373!

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So, what are you playing this weekend?