Back in the Saddle in the New Year

I've been away from the blogging game for quite a while now. Without going into too many details, it was largely because of a busy holiday time, my continuing search for a job, and general laziness. Oh yeah, and getting wrapped up in playing games instead of writing about them!

Even though I haven't written much recently, I have certainly stayed busy. The remake of Dragon Quest IV for the DS kept me busy through most of the Christmas season. As a long time fan of Japanese RPGs, it really scratched an itch I had neglected for far too long. One thing I like about JRPGs like DQIV is their repetition and relative simplicity. I know that typically a new town will lead to a new dungeon to explore. And if I'm not strong enough for a particular boss, I know I can walk back and forth in a room, level up, and try again. For me, (most) JRPGs are the comfort food of video games, an electronic macaroni and cheese.

As I've posted previously, I also spent as much time as possible on Persona 3, enjoying it but struggling to stay involved enough to see it through to the end. Not much news there, I have about three months of game time left, and at least three major bosses. The struggle shall continue, although it is getting easier.

Perhaps the biggest regret of the last few weeks is that I have neglected my PS3 almost completely, and I'm not sure why. One reason is that I want to rush through Persona 3 so I can play Metal Gear Solid 3, in order to finally play Metal Gear Solid 4. MGS4 is arguably the game I most want for the PS3, but I see no point in getting it until I play the third outing. My plan is to reinvigorate my PS3 attention by renting a game soon, ideally LittleBigPlanet or the new Prince of Persia. So we'll see how that goes.

Perhaps the biggest reason I'm not currently focused on the PS3 is that I'm completely engrossed in Civilization Revolution (DS version). It was next on my list after DQIV, after many months of neglect. I realize and accept that it's a simpler, streamlined version of its PC counterparts, and really enjoy it for what it is. It will probably be my game of choice for essays for the next couple weeks.

After starting Civ Rev, and seeing a holiday sale on Steam, I was immensely curious if the critically-acclaimed Civilization IV would work on either my or my girlfriend's computer. Unsurprisingly, it failed completely on my ancient PC, but runs quite smoothly on my girlfriends so far. Civ IV really is quite a beast of a game. There's so much to learn and do, I'm pretty sure it could be played forever, and would be my game of choice if I was stranded on a desert island (with electricity). Learning about the intricacies of Civ IV (as well as Revolution) has consumed my thoughts of late. There's just so much involved with both of those games.

Even though I've been somewhat lazy with the blog, I'm trying to rectify that in the new year. Here's to more consistent posting in the future!

P.S. I don't have a 2008 "Best of" list because I so rarely played any of the big games that were actually released last year.

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