Emerald City Comic Con!

Got the day off to attend Emerald City Comic Con. I’m looking forward to it, and got paid just in time to purchase some goodies! Also meeting David Tennant and Billie Piper. A dream come true!

Been playing some iOS games. Picked up Evoland 2 which perked my interest, so I decided to play the first game since it was only $2. So far I’m impressed! I’m just disappointed I didn’t find out about this game sooner. Also playing through Dragon Quest I, so that’ll be fun.

I’ve been really irritated with Train Simulator recently. The new Woodhead route that I picked up a few days ago is bugged both in Quick Play and with some later scenarios. I’m not exactly sure what to do except wait and hope the developers patch it quickly. It’s frustrations like this that make me want to give up Train Simulator entirely and just stick to flight sims or Train Sim World (which is still in active development).

The one thing I love about Train Sim though is that it’s pick up and play. With my driving sims, I have to set up my wheel and pedals, and launch my Oculus…which isn’t too bad admittedly, but it can get in the way of other games. With my flight sims I have to set up my rudder pedals and joystick, and spend about an hour of real world procedures just to start a 737. I don’t have to do any of that with Train Simulator.

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I’ve updated X-Plane 11 with some more addons. Mostly some airport scenery updates and I’m going to get HDMesh v4 installed (about 100GB download) for some extra realism. It’s large, but it’s not too bad if I compare with getting equivalent ortho textures, which could go in the TB range.

Did a start up and takeoff in a 737 this morning, didn’t do too well considering I’ve been out of practice for a few months, but I started it up eventually.

Played through Tekken earlier this morning. Didn’t like it as much as I thought I would. The customization options are cut and paste for each character, the roster isn’t as big, and the gameplay is just okay. I’m finding I prefer more the 2D fighters such as Blazblue or Guilty Gear for the good story, beautiful graphics, and excellent gameplay than I do the newer 3D fighters.

Also played some Gundam Breaker 3. Good hack-and-slash game with amazing customization elements. To be honest I was a bit skeptical since it wasn’t the “True” Gundam experience and just a Gunpla game, but it’s really, really good

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Simulators and Games

Yesterday was a pretty good day. I picked up the new Woodhead route for Train Simulator and it plays great. I completed three scenarios (two rather poorly unfortunately), but I still had a good time.

In Train Sim World: Great Western Express, I finished a scenario that I wasn’t able to finish before, the trick is to not save or request to pass a red signal, otherwise it’ll break the scenario.

Something I’m going to have to do is limit the amount of times I save/reload a scenario in both Train Sim World and Train Simulator. It seems best to save every time I stop. It’s frustrating though, saving is essential because if I run into some issue or the software crashes, I’ve lost over 45 minutes of game time. But if I save at the wrong time, a light might not trigger, or an AI train might not trigger at the right time causing an accident elsewhere on the map.

In general gaming news, now that I have a good setup for my PS4/Switch/PC, I found it eliminates me double-dipping in purchasing multiple games. Before I had a gaming PC, I used the PS4 primarily for gaming, and games such as The Witcher 3 was one of the big purchases I made, which I put over 20 hours into it. I was frustrated at the time because the text was very difficult to read across the living room, even with a good set of glasses.

After I purchased a gaming PC I saw The Witcher 3 on a steam sale for a good deal and picked it up there for the enhanced graphics and 60 FPS gameplay. While I put 5 hours into it, I had to force my way through much of it. When I knew the outcome of the story (and in such a massive game), I felt I had to skip through most of the side quests just to catch up. That for me is not fun at all.

I ended up reinstalling The Witcher 3 for the PS4, while it’s not going to look or play as good as the PC, it should in no way hinder my enjoyment of the story. I’ll just have to remember what I was doing last time I was playing (I was somewhere in Skellige).

I’m also playing through Total War: Rome II. I plan on doing a couple turns a day since I can easily spend an entire night playing it. What happens at a certain point after prolonged play is I start getting bogged down and end up rushing things to get to the next turn, which usually ends in disaster. As Rome, I’ve kicked out the Etruscan League out of the peninsula and will finish them off in Corsica before turning south towards Syracuse and Carthage.

Bad Weekend

Hey there!

It’s been a rough weekend, had some lower back issues so was in bed for most of the weekend. I did get a bit of gaming done by playing Bayonetta 2 and Nier Automata, but not as much as I wanted.

I figured out how to double my screen size on my nVidia graphics card. The results look fantastic, but having dual monitors I’m stuck with a bar in the middle of the screen.

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Maybe if I had three monitors it would eliminate that problem, and I definitely have the space to do it. It’s just…is it really worth it for just a few games? I don’t think it is…

 

Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet

Another day,

I picked up Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet. I haven’t finished Hollow Realization just yet, but given the differences in atmosphere between both games, I don’t see a reason why I shouldn’t pick it up. I’m excited about playing it today. I’ve been watching SAO: Season 2 to get some backstory, but it shouldn’t be required to enjoy the game.

Thought about social media the other day. I am starting to feel some Facebook withdrawls. I’m still using Messenger and the login features, but it’s hard not to be curious about what’s going on everywhere else. Taking a look at my feed, I had about 30 updates, most of them from various groups I’m subscribed to, and about 2 of them are replies to my “Leaving Facebook” post which were calling me out for saying the community is toxic. It’s basically who I follow, yes, but when I “Like” on Facebook the local news station, see a report about something Trump did and a bunch of posts from ignorant people about how “evil” liberals are, it really turns me off…makes me feel depressed even…as if I don’t need enough of that in my life.

Twitter is a bit better, I can easily unsubscribe from feeds I don’t like an just cater it to what I do want to read. Celebrities I follow, gaming sites and blogs I read, and people like me who are interested in the same things. Where Facebook is catered more toward people, friends, and ads…Twitter is catered to exactly what I like.

The only negative aspect of Twitter that I can find is that feeds just move way too fast. I step away for a couple hours and I’m suddenly faced with 50+ feeds to sort through. I can’t read that fast, yet I don’t want to miss out on anything important!

Other news, preordered Train Sim World: Northeast Corridor. I’m looking forward to playing another US route, especially in New York. There’s a route based off it in TS2018 that I’m playing through in the meantime…got a bit frusterated at a scenario so I’m probably just going to explore the route in Quick Drive.

The only problem is that I think I can only run one Quick Drive at a time, and with my Plymouth to London route, I’m only in Taunton which is between Exeter and Bristol, which is the Southwest of England. So there’s about an hour and a half of driving left in that route…yikes. I’m going nearly 100mph so it’s not too bad of a drive though.

Other than that, life is pretty boring. I haven’t been gaming too much the last few days due to being just busy. By the time I’m done with what I have to do at home, it’s already 9PM and I’m getting ready for bed. The problem I have is that if I stop something for a day or more, it’s very difficult to get back to it…before I know it a month has passed and I can’t remember what I was doing in that project or game.

Anyways, that’s all I have to say for today. Just going to keep blogging as much as I can (for the above reason!) otherwise I’ll just stop and forget about it.

X-Plane

Decided to reinstall X-Plane.

What I mentioned a few days ago, I realized it’s not the simming that bothers me, it’s the maintenance. When there are so many addons, it’s hard to keep track of every single thing.

“Time for a flight, just let me check on an update on the tree textures and the airport textures, download orthos for the area, make sure HDMesh overlays are installed over the meshes, check which airport packages are installed and up-to-date, update Zibo’s 737 mod, make sure my Navigraph charts are up to date, make sure my nav data is up to date, check if my plugins are up to date, check if my weather addon is updated, okay now I’m ready to open up X-Plane!”

I swear, it must take me at least half an hour if not more just to start the sim.

Today, I’m reaching for a new goal. I’m going to reinstall it, but with as little addons as possible. It’s not going to look as “nice” as it would normally, but gosh it’ll be so much easier to manage.

Apart from that, I’m doing some more train simulator. I mentioned in my last post that it’s really bothering me running into broken scenarios. Today in the newer Train Sim World, I ran into yet another broken scenario losing over an hour of gameplay because I couldn’t get the dispatcher to switch the track, causing me to end my scenario. So I’ve decided a new course of action. Just play Quick Drive scenarios for now.

With Quick Drive, it’s a bit more simplified. While I don’t get the unpredictability or the realism that a true scenario could bring, yet I can chose the options to my liking. If the only scenarios I have are to stop at 30 stations in dark rainy conditions under a tight time table…that kinda sucks and it doesn’t seem like fun. Making matters worse is saving at the wrong time or doing something unexpected can completely ruin that scenario and cause me to waste an hour or more retrying it.

Yet if I chose point A to point B with some AI traffic, and use a realistic loco in that particular route. It’s a lot more relaxing. I can save without having to worry about breaking some event trigger, and just enjoy the ride without having to hit every single stop whether or not I want to.

Right now I picked a route from Plymouth, UK to London. It’s about a 3 hour trip, and I plan on doing small 15-30 minute legs in between my other games. It’s quite relaxing.

Moving Forward

Been a busy couple of weeks. Here’s my update.

First, ended up logging off of Facebook for good. Just tired of it. It’s something like 90% ads, 5% content from people I know, and 5% content from people I barely speak to. Wading through all that just to see one or two posts is a waste of time. I usually use it to get the latest game news, but with that being the case, it’s easier just to use Twitter.

It’s not “deleted”, I still need it for Spotify and Instagram and other services. It’s just going to be inactive for a while.

Today I decided to delete X-Plane. As much as I love virtual flying and with all the addons I’ve invested into it, it’s just something that takes too much time to “maintain”. Basically, each and every addon I have is constantly being updated. If I stop flying for a month, I am spending hours trying to download and update the Aircraft, Terrain, Orthos, Plugins, Airports, etc. I had over 1TB of data just in the sim alone, it’s insane. I jumped on to X-Plane a few months ago to learn to fly a 737. I feel like I accomplished that and it’s just time to move on.

I’ll be on DCS, IL-2, and War Thunder for my flying fix. At least there’s some objectives there and I have a better knowledge of military aircraft. Plus, other than downloading an update once every month or so…there’s no addons to maintain.

Invested a lot of time in Train Simulator in the past month. It’s relaxing, but the bugs have been irritating me. Ran into one bug yesterday where a light wouldn’t turn green, so I sat there for 5 minutes, unable to complete the scenario because of this glich. Then today did a 25 minute run in a freight train, only for it to say I “failed” due to missing a stop that didn’t exist. I’d like to say these bugs wasted my time (since I don’t get a checkmark to a completed scenario; but honestly, the journey, not the destination is what gets me going in these games.

Got a dual monitor setup now. It’s great because I can now have the PC in one screen, and my PS4 or Switch in another. Plus I can articulate the screens so I can watch TV in my bed.

This weekend has been a lot about gaming, what to play, what rules to enforce. “Play one game at a time”, for example versus playing too many games at once. I find it’s best just to enjoy whatever it is at the moment and not think too much into it. I can’t allow gaming to become a chore.

And that’s about it for the weekend.

Groundhog Day Friday!

It’s been a good week. Cleaned up much of my closet, and did some computer upgrades.

Placed my PS4 in my gaming area now. I hated having it in front of the TV, especially given that it’s only 720p. It was also hard to read crucial messages from that distance.
That’s not to say I hate gaming in front of the TV, I’m still keeping my legacy consoles there and the Switch.

The Switch, at least I can move to my room any time, plus I have friends who would like to play in a spacious living room. The PS4, I feel isn’t as crucial.

The setup works great, my new headphones have a Line-In and Line-Out (that automatically cuts off when my headset is on) and my monitor has an audio output as well. What I did was plug in the speakers to Line-Out, the monitor to Line-In, and the audio will switch on it’s own. Not only that, but the monitor has an input selector so I can chose between HDMI or DVI with a push of a button. Really nice!
Looking forward to the weekend. Not sure what I’m going to do yet, but still have a lot of work to go in my room.