A rather LATE Monday post. The Coffee Break 14 Nov 2016.
Yes indeed it is Monday and it is nice to have you back for another week of exciting discussion and- oh who am I kidding it’s Monday and you are all probably grumpy as the coffee has dried up and you are stuck in traffic on your way home thinking: “god, is there more to this life than just work and sleep and work and sleep?”
While I lack the answers you seek, I can provide some discussion on miscellaneous topics starting with Sombra from Overwatch. New character, interesting play style, and here is hoping that she does not ruin the game balance with her ability to hack in-game opponents. This can be a good thing and this can be a bad thing as an entire team of Sombras can effectively cancel out a team of mixed heroes and prevent them from achieving said objectives – however if Sombra can die easily from – say – Reinhardt (which is not out of the question as it depends on who strikes first) then things will be more acceptable. Knowing Blizzard they will work to achieve in-game balance which is key if they wish to see Overwatch enter into the E-sports arena as another game to compete in.
Moving on, I picked up Rebel Galaxy last week during GoG’s sale and am pleasantly surprised at how simple yet enjoyable the game turned out. Rebel Galaxy features space combat on a single plane (which just means the enemy cannot rise above you or ambush you from below – flat broadside to broadside fighting) and elements of role play in that you go from planet to planet, station to station doing quests for various factions and upgrading your ship and eventually buying new ships until you achieve a super dreadnought (or something along those lines). Open world games tend to be the ones I purchase today as linear campaigns and story arcs are becoming less and less my cup of tea (rare exceptions being Star Wars Republic Commando, Titanfall 2, and other similar titles – even that is changing). Being able to tackle an objective my way verses how the game wants me to tackle it offers so little freedom that I might as well spend my down time at work taking orders – I play a game to be free, free to slam my tank into another vehicle, free to shoot at enemy troops, and free to randomly run around town in nothing but my underwear (mods can make you go full natural (humor intended)) and do things that I cannot do in real life.
The thing with gaming is that it helps people explore their fantasies; often the real world is disappointing and soul-crushing as we are forced to wake up at 6am, force feed, brush our teeth and use the facilities before getting into our cars and fighting through traffic to make it to work. There we are locked in for 8 hours (try leaving when you think you have earned enough for the day and it is off to the unemployment line for you) before you are finally allowed to leave which you then fight with traffic again to get home and squeeze out the last few minutes of the day for yourself before you have to turn off the lights and go to sleep for the next day – you might as well join the military because at least the job there is meaningful, civilian jobs offer the illusion of freedom.
Gaming, however, offers a real taste of freedom – one that is done so in a safe environment where your actions cannot negatively impact others, and I think that is the main element with gaming that makes it so appealing. Open world titles in particular offer quite a lot of freedom, and while in-game there is law and order ie: Skyrim, you can easily resist arrest and fight off the guards as you are the chosen hero – in reality not only will you be making an idiot of yourself, you will get a baton to the side of the head, or pepper spray to the face (the entire bottle).
This of course makes sense as order and a civil society is maintained via discipline, cooperation, and an organized government. Still, gaming allows us to realize a harmless fantasy, and to blow off steam in a world constantly bombarding us with messages of buy this, vote for that, take a vacation, spend spend spend – unless you have a mountain of gold, spend spend spend also equals work work work. Then there are the endless so-called “responsibilities” where you have to respond to this and do that (some make sense, and some do not make sense).
Returning to the topic at hand, Rebel Galaxy is a worthy buy, but if you were looking for something as in-depth as the Witcher 3 just remember that this is an indie title – your time on space stations is simply a series of dialogue options and moving images, you do not actually wander the stations.
Okay folks that was a rather rambling coffee break; I hope you had a decent Monday at least and be sure to try and enjoy the days as they come by – nothing worse than wasted time. Thanks for reading, be sure to check out my Patreon page if you wish to support us, and I shall see you next time.