Vacation gaming

If you’ve been following my accomplishment update posts, you’ll be aware that one of the big things I’ve been struggling with is playing video games, and that I was going to be going on vacation and wanted to make a big push to play video games.  And I’ve been off for about a week and a half now and have indeed been playing games, so I’m going to take the day to talk about that a bit.

The game that I’ve played the longest so far — up to 30 hours at this point — is a game that I really, really wanted to finish on my vacation:  Persona 5 Royal.  I picked it up a couple of months into the pandemic — I had preordered it but a lockdown kept me from being able to get it — and played it to the start of the second palace and then ran out of time to play it, and could never fit it in afterwards.  One of the reasons for that is that the game added a lot of things, both in and out of dungeons.  There are at least two or three new S-links.  In the dungeons, there’s a grappling hook gimmick and Will Seeds to find (which haven’t been that hard to find so far).  In every S-link, there are more occasions, at least, where the link will contact you after you advance their link for an additional short conversation.  I think there are a few new scenes.  Add to that the fact that I have to build up all of my attributes again and there are more activities to do that, and there’s just so much more to do in the game.  As I just said, I’m 30 hours in and can’t decide if I’m ahead of or behind my regular Persona 5 time of over 80 hours.  Given that I might not be able to get all of the S-links that I want to finish done this time around, I might think about replaying it … except that I’m quite sure I won’t get through a second play this month and it’s not a game that I can play for a couple of hours a week and get anywhere.  So I’ll have to muddle through with this one and see if I can get a decent romantic relationship out of it (I prefer Makoto, but she gets blocked by Charm later in the game and I’m not sure I’ll be able to get there by then).  But it does indeed look like I’ll get through one play and so finish it this time around, and it will be very nice to finally finish it after about a year and a half.

The other games I’ve been playing are MMOs.  I started a new character in The Old Republic, playing as Dori Doreau from Sledge Hammer! as an Imperial Agent who is an expert in terrorist psychology who will come to believe that the Sith are a terrorist organization that’s a threat to the Empire.  After that, I might take on ol’ Sledge himself as a Smuggler — I alternate between Empire and Republic side playthroughs to keep the planet missions fresh — with the underlying story being that they were police officers who were kicked off the force and forced to do other things, with Sledge’s story being his chagrin of having to associate with scumbags all the time.  I’m even considering another run with Captain Trunk as a Sith (likely Consular), finally letting his anger work for him.

But I also am trying to return to an old MMO, as I reupped to Dark Age of Camelot and started playing it.  It’s amazing how much it felt like returning to an old world that I hadn’t been in for a while and liked.  That being said, it still is an old school MMO, with rather repetitive but constant and somewhat unfair combat — you can easily get jumped and swarmed if you are not careful, especially in dungeons — and relatively thin quests.  It’s also quite hard for me to figure out what level I’m actually at, and amazingly it’s really hard to find a clock in the game, unlike the others where I can see what time it is on the UI.  Still, I enjoyed it up until I got swarmed in a dungeon, and those were optional quests anyway so I might just pick up the main thread of quests again and gain a couple more levels before venturing in again.

The other MMO I picked up is a new one that I was tempted to try, which is Star Trek Online.  I’m playing the Free-To-Play option and have played one session for about three to four hours.  I started with the TOS-era, and found that it’s a mix of traditional MMO combat and quests in the ground missions with the space combat of Starfleet Battles, which is an interesting combination.  That being said, it’s not a very good MMO.  There is equipment, but I’m not entirely sure how to use it and make sure everything is properly equipped, and don’t know, at least not yet, where to sell it or buy other equipment.  The ground missions are also pretty weak when it comes to what you need to do to finish the quests, and I haven’t seen that many bonus missions or any side quests beyond what seems to be the main quest so far.  In the same time frame, both DAoC and TOR gave me a wider variety of quests and better explained how equipment worked and what I was supposed to be doing.  That being said, while it’s an inferior MMO I find it to be a really good Star Trek game.  The main quest moves you along through a number of situations taken from the episodes of TOS, with a new twist on them so that we aren’t just redoing the episodes.  I’ve seen the Gallileo 7 planet, the Gorn, the Tholians, and the mind-controlling creatures that killed Kirk’s brother.  This is all wrapped around a main plot that references the Temporal Cold War but does a better job of it than Enterprise did, and has you interact with the crew from the Original Series in interesting ways.  There are also a number of eras and cultures to choose from, allowing for a fair number of different experiences.  So it hasn’t really been an issue that I’ve just been following the main quest along in a linear fashion, and things might open up later.  It’s just a bit weird for an MMO.

Anyway, those are the games that I’m focusing on for this month.  Obviously, that’s going to change after New Year’s.

2 Responses to “Vacation gaming”

  1. Comparing the MMOs | The Verbose Stoic Says:

    […] didn’t really intend for this to be a weekly thing, but I’ve been playing the three MMOs that I’m playing or trying out one morning a week […]

  2. Vacation Update | The Verbose Stoic Says:

    […] and so it was the biggest thing that I wanted to do that I hadn’t been doing while working.  They’re going pretty well.  I’ve put enough time in on the MMOs to get a sense of how the new ones work and to decide […]

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