Monthly Archives: September 2023


Right, first of all there’s still no review for Death Stranding, but in my defense, the reason is that another game has absorbed my attention like an absorbent thing found in all the oceans. I’m sure there’s a name for it, but that isn’t important right now. What is important is that I’m about to say something deeply controversial and divisive to the gaming community at large.


Computer role play games are rarely role play games. Oh sure, they all wear the label like Buffalo Bill would slip on a lady suit had he succeeded in his plan to flay a senator’s daughter. But most are rides on rails that offer illusional choices in the guise of actual role play. But getting four dialogue choices that all steer the story in the same direction does not equal role play. Continue reading

Versus series: Monster battle!

This week I’m doing something a bit different, probably because I’m playing Death Stranding and all the Monster Energy Drink branding is getting to me. (And definitely not because I’ve failed to finish Death Stranding on time for a review this week.) I’m ranking every sugar free Monster flavor I could get my hands on to tell you who is the bomb, and who is the barf. (Literally!)

But before I begin, I should mention two things. First, because I drank uncarbonated taurine drinks as a morning beverage of choice for a few years, I actually like the taste of plain old Red Bull. Lots of folks can’t stand it, and I can understand it is either something you love or hate. Personally, I love it, so that’s my baseline flavor profile for all other brands.

Second, I’m not sure why, but at a certain point, energy drinks lost a lot of their power over my sleep habits. I’ve been known to drink one before bed and still get a good night’s sleep. I think part of this is my choice of drinking the sugar free versions, as I’ve sometimes randomly gone for the regular editions and ended up pulling an unintentional all-nighter. What I’m saying is, I can only review these based on taste, and not on how much “kick” are in them. Continue reading

Game review: Steam World Heist for Steam

I realized moments after starting Steam World Heist that I’d played the games out of order, or sort of out of order. Hand of Gilgamech is an odd entry in the series, as it could be a prequel that comes before the first Steam World Dig, or it could be a sequel taking place long after Heist. In any case, Heist is meant to follow the two Dig games, being a sequel that takes place a hundred or so years after the previous entry.

Before I get into the plot or mechanics, I will drop the early verdict and say that this was the least enjoyable of the games thus far. Like, it’s okay, but not really great or bad. The shift to turn-based strategy combined with the idea of pillaging ships for resources could have been the best pivot away from the resource management of the first two games.

Instead, this entry in the Steamverse also got shackled with resource management for the dumbest of reasons, and with a burden of a required grind with every new character introduced. But if it were just these two factors, I might still be forgiving and regard it as a good game. Instead, Steam World Heist continually makes choices to bury any hope of fun under a pile of terrible ideas. Continue reading

My GTA VI wishlist

Believe it or don’t, but I’m actually ahead of my blogging schedule for once, with a few reviews already queued up and good to go. Finding myself with free time on my hands, I decided to go back to Grand Theft Auto V to finish up the last of the story. Unlike my run on the Xbox, this time I chose to spare Trevor because even if I still don’t like him, the idea of getting rid of Steve Haines and Devin Weston was more appealing after putting up with their crap a second time around.

I’ve actually been playing GTA V a lot on PC, though I’ve frequently restarted without getting very far beyond the second heist. This is because I’m not really playing the game like other folks. I don’t go in for crazy stunts or skillful getaways from higher level police pursuits. I watch folks do that on YouTube, and of course I find it impressive. But mostly, I play to chill out.

I might get in a car and cruise around the highway while listening to the radio. Other times, I like to play golf with Franklin and his golfing buddy, Castro Lagano, or play tennis with Michael against his wife Amanda, or against a random dude at the public courts. (Though I prefer playing random strangers because Amanda was working on her backhand almost as she was on her reverse cowgirl with her tennis instructor. She’s set me up with that cross court backhand so often, I’ve had actual nightmares about it.) Sometimes, I like to steal the faster cars and get on the highway late at night to get a mostly free length of road for a real test run. And sometimes I just go for a walk to take in whatever is happening around my character. Continue reading