The State of the Gamer: 2/28/17 (& the Results of Four in February)

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<–The State of the Gamer: 2/21/17          The State of the Gamer: 3/7/17–>

A weekly post updated every Tuesday detailing my current gaming projects.  I have quite a backlog of games to either play or watch, and I’m hoping a weekly article will assist with my progress as my other accountable posts have done with reading and writing.
I have an account at Grouvee, which is a essentially Goodreads for gamers, so please feel free to friend me there!
Original source of the banner art is located here.

Title: Final Fantasy IV
Series: Final Fantasy
Genre: RPG – Fantasy
Developer: Square
Original Platform: SNES
Original Release Date: July 19, 1991
Current Platform: Game Boy Advance
Current Platform Release Date: December 12, 2005
Date Started: October 24. 2016

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I’m right in front of the Dwarf King’s Castle in the underground.  I haven’t gone in yet, because you’re pulled into a mandatory fight with some wooden dolls.  It’s not a difficult battle, and the music is amazing; I just haven’t had the time to do it yet.

Title: World of Final Fantasy
Series: Final Fantasy
Genre: RPG – Fantasy
Developer: Square Enix
Platform(s): PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita
Release Date: October 25, 2016
Date Bought: October 21, 2016
Date Started: November 5, 2016
Date Finished(?): February 19, 2017

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Let’s see…I fought and caught the three “dark” Mirages of Shiva, Ifrit, and Ramuh or rather their little versions.  They all come with mementos for the other transfigurations, so I caught another Fritt, Bablizz, and Zapt respectively, but I need one more of each so that I can have one Mirage for each transfiguration.  I also attempted to fight the optional boss XG (which I’m pretty sure stands for “Xenogears”), but lost.  I looked up a guide for how to win “easily,” so I think I’ll try again tomorrow and report next week on my results.

Title: Journey
Genre: Adventure, Art
Developer: Thatgamecompany
Original Platforms: PlayStation 3
Original Release Date: March 13, 2012
Current Platform: PlayStation 4
Current Platform Release Date: July 21, 2015
Date Purchased: January 21, 2017
Date Started: February 11, 2017

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No journeying this week either.  I promise I’ll pick it back up again, especially since I’m close to completely done with WOFF..

I did remove Dawn of Souls since it’s been over a month since I’ve played it.  I was going to concentrate on the II part of DoS, but I decided against that, too.  FFII has my least favorite leveling system, and though I’m curious if they improve upon it in that iteration,

Games Currently Watching

Title: Ys: The Vanished Omens
Series: Ys
Genre: Action RPG – Fantasy
Developer: Nihon Falcon
Original Platform: Multiple
Original Release Date: June 21, 1987
Let’s Player: Hungry Goriya
Date Started: February 13, 2017

I watched the latest update yesterday and geez did HG tackle a difficult dungeon.  Ys seems to have a very steep learning curve or rather it makes areas available that are way above your level, but you’ll often need to traverse them for necessary items.  Later, the area will have to be formally conquered, but the first time through, it’s more of a snatch and grab.  I’m pretty sure this is why they made the music so epic.  The game designers knew you’d face arduous trials and wanted the player to have some sort of compensation.

Title: Mass Effect III
Series: Mass Effect
Genre: Action RPG – Sci-Fi
Developer: BioWare
Original Platform(s): Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3
Original Release Date: March 6, 2012
Let’s Player: Olizandri
Date Started: January 23, 2017

The next episode had Wrex, Grunt, and Mordin.  Happy reunions all around!  The let’s player is also canny enough to bring Liara and Garrus along so that all the old crew can reconnect.  The resources for the war effort are looking really good for this LP, and I’m curious what Olizandri is going to choose for his ending.  I do have to say, I absolutely hate the sound the Reapers make when they enter a system you’re in (if you alert them to your presence).  I abhor “chase” horror, and that’s the epitome of it D:


Games Added to Playlist: 0


Four in February

So how did I do?  Well, I had seven games on my original list.  Let’s go through them one by one.

  1. World of Final Fantasy – Finished.  Still playing it for the post-postscript, but I consider this a completed game.  Now, I’m not sure if it doesn’t technically count since I didn’t start and finish it in February, but who’s really going to be that technical.
  2. ABZU – Didn’t start. I neither started nor even downloaded/bought this one.  Maybe next year, I’ll make sure I pick games I already have *shrug*
  3. Cthulhu Saves the World – Didn’t start.  Same as ABZU.
  4. Inside – Watched end.  I played quite a bit of it, watched my husband play more, and then I watched the ending in a let’s play.  I started it in January, so it may fall under the same “technicality” as WOFF.
  5. Journey – Started; still playing.  I only actually played this one, because I was mostly focused on WOFF.  There was also my issue with the camera angles.  I’ll probably finish this in March.
  6. fLOw – DNF.  I played one session of the game and decided it wasn’t my cup of tea.  I consider this like a DNF book.  I don’t know if it really counts to my overall total, but I’m finished with it.
  7. I Am Setsuna – Didn’t start.  I do own this one, but I didn’t play it at all this month.  I was kind of playing three RPGs and a fourth would’ve been a bit too much.  This is definitely in my next five RPGs to play though.

Considering I finished a game I’ve spent around 200 hours on, watched the end of one I played at least half of, and declared one DNF, I’d say I did pretty well 🙂


What are you currently playing and/or watching? Is it something new or old?  Is it a first time run or a replay?  What’s the genre?  Would you recommend it?  What’s on your radar to play next?

<–The State of the Gamer: 2/21/17          The State of the Gamer: 3/7/17–>

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The State of the Writer: 2/26/17

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<–The State of the Writer: 2/19/17          The State of the Writer: 3/5/17–>

A weekly post updated every Sunday discussing my current writing projects and where I stand with them.  This will include any and all work(s) in progress (WIP) be they creative writing, essays/analyses, or reviews of any type.

Project: Story
Title:
The Broken Rose
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Type: Fanfiction (FFVII) Novel
Current Word Count: 273,586
Prior Word Count: 274,050
Word Difference: -464
Status: Editing
Progress: 1st edit of Chapter 8

Yesterday was a productive day/evening for editing.  I drank enough coffee to not quite give myself heart palpitations, but still remain alert (the sweet spot!), and I made some pretty good progress.  Chapter 8 has a chapter break that could technically be a new chapter, but in reading what was beyond, it’s all either the same thing conceptually or extraneous.  I’m going to read through and decide what I want to keep and incorporate either in the beginning part of the chapter or elsewhere while cutting the rest.

I still have no idea what picture I’m going to use for this chapter.  It needs so much work I really haven’t had time to think about the “finishing” touches.  The substance of the writing has been my central focus.  I’m sure I’ll think of something in the second or third edit.

Quote: “Your innocence is pure, my little flower.  My strength comes from corruption.”

“But you’ve only used it to protect me, and I love it so much.”  She yawned again and slipped against his neck. 

*I’ve used it to protect you now within this future life.*

“If you use it for good…”  Her little voice was fading as slumber drew Aeris towards sleep.  “What does it matter where such strength has its source?”

Unblinking and behind the mask, Sephiroth’s guilt fought to remain.  He tried to respond, but words soon failed for this truth had no retort. 


Project: Essay
Title: Half a Tragedy Is Worse Than Whole
Subject: FFVII Comparative and Meta
Current Word Count: 1436
Prior Word Count: 1436
Word Difference: 0
Status: Drafting
Progress: N/A

I might have to put a moratorium on this essay until late spring.  I just don’t have the wherewithal to write about Oedipus complexes and “mommy issues” right now, and there’s no way I can write an FFVII/Greek Tragedy comparative essay without talking about that.  It wouldn’t be complete.


What are you currently working on?  Is it a creative writing project, essay, review, or something else?  Have you just started something new or are you wrapping up a long term project?

<–The State of the Writer: 2/19/17          The State of the Writer: 3/5/17–>

The Missing Orchid (Submissive Beth Mysteries #3)

The Shameful Narcissist Reviews

Title: The Missing Orchid
Series Title: Submissive Beth Mysteries
Author: Fia Black
Date Added: February 2, 2017
Date Started: February 8, 2017
Date Finished: February 20, 2017
Genre(s): Mystery, BDSM, Erotica

Pages: 122
Publication Date: February 3, 2017
Media:
Kindle

Lily aka Mistress Orchid needs Beth to help her find the daughter she was forced to give up when she was sixteen. With the help of Jason and Lily, Beth tries to find the girl only to learn she was searching for Lily too. But the happy ending turns tragic when they find the girl only to learn she is missing. Beth and Jason become determined to bring Lily the closure she needs even if that means solving two missing person cases.


This is the third book in Ms. Black’s Submissive Beth series, and I’m happy to say she continues to impress with her mystery, erotica novels.  Each iteration has done something new, but still upholds her paradigm of Beth, the BDSM worker turned successful PI.   The Missing Orchid hits a bit close to home with several characters and their familial issues, and I like where Beth and Jason are heading in terms of a potential partnership.

The end reveal is psychologically sound, and the author seems to be making a great effort to not become stale, formulaic, or boring.  I was half-expecting a particular ending, so I was happy and impressed when that did not occur.

The only issues with the novel are some grammar and spelling errors that could be taken care of with a careful edit.  The Missing Orchid is a swift, fast-paced read that perfect intersperses Beth’s work at the Club with her work on her cases.  It does BDSM the right way in terms of ensuring consent, going over the rules, and participating in after care.  I’ve said before I’m not remotely an expert on that lifestyle, but I understand the basics, and the author is far better at the basics than a certain, unfortunately popular series out there that’s giving many people wrong information.  I want them to read this instead since it’s better written and doesn’t promote abusive relationships.  Ms. Black also manages to leave a little bit of mystery and addition to an overarching theme that I’m sure will be explored in novels to come.

I linked Fia Black’s WordPress site above under her author name, and she has an excerpt for the next book right here (Warning: Graphic descriptions of torture).

4 stars.

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Final Fantasy Friday: The System Is Down

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The system isn’t really down, rather I want to know which system you’re down with.  Which Final Fantasy has your favorite magic/leveling/battle system?  Are you a Materia hunter?  Do you prefer to have a specific Job?  Or would you rather Junction your way through random battles?Since this is a bit of a three part question, a three part answer with potentially different games is more than acceptable.

Hm, well, it’s hard for me to separate the systems from the story.  FFIV’s job system fits with its story line (especially considering the main character’s job changes as part of the plot) just like FFVII’s Materia system fits with its.  I’m going to try to stay objective and look at the systems outside of their respective narratives.

For leveling, the only system I absolutely abhorred was Final Fantasy II’s.  Having to fight with a weapon, shield, or magic spell a hundred times in order to make progress was one of the worst decisions Square ever made, and I’m happy the company didn’t suffer for it.  All of the other Final Fantasies I’ve played level in the way the video game gods intended, and I’m perfectly fine with that.

To be honest, I like VIII’s Junction system.  I like the versatility of it.  I like how you can switch around GFs to make your characters tanks.  I like how you can add/take away abilities, and I think the system gets much more hate than it deserves.  When I first played the game, I didn’t quite understand how it worked, so I spent a lot of time summoning my GFs, but once I figured it out, it was a simple matter of drawing a hundred of applicable spells and junctioning them to the appropriate spots.  I also liked how you would make a specific salary depending on your sEED rank, not that I mind beating up monsters for gil.  FFVIII just had this organization to it (maybe because it was about a military organization that was trying to do good as opposed to VII’s…) that fit well with my Taurus mind.  It was a very well organized game in terms of its systems.

I know magic and battle systems are intertwined, but there are some slight nuances.  Going back to the Jobs systems, I like how IX handles it.  I could say similar things about VIII, but I feel like they updated where they were going in the prior game with IX.  I like that each character has a specialty, which is the opposite to VIII’s Junction system where anyone can be customized for anything, and then switched around at a moment’s notice (barring their Limit Breaks).  The only thing I don’t like about IX’s battle system is if you go into Trance at the end of a fight, you lose it regardless of if you use it.  I wish they’d kept the same system used in FFVII and revived in X where the Limit Break was available until you decided to unleash it.

I think Steiner’s was my favorite.  He looked like an actual knight instead of a grumpy, old man in rusty armor.

Let’s discuss favorite systems in the comments!

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The State of the Reader: 2/22/17

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<–The State of the Reader: 2/15/17          The State of the Reader: 3/1/17–>

A weekly post updated every Wednesday detailing my current reading projects and where I am with them in addition to what new titles I’ve added to my to-read list.  Title links go to Goodreads to make it easier for interested parties to add any books that might strike their fancy.  I attempt to use the covers for the edition I’m reading, and I’ll mention if this is not the case.  If you have a Goodreads account feel free to friend me!  I’d love to see what you’re reading and/or planning to read.

Books Finished This Week: 1

Title: The Missing Orchid
Series Title: Submissive Beth Mysteries
Author: Fia Black
Date Added: February 2, 2017
Date Started: February 8, 2017
Date Finished: February 20, 2017
Reading Duration: 12 days

I was more than satisfied with the ending of this book, and I’m glad to see the author isn’t becoming stagnant with her story lines.  I hope she plans to continue this series, because I have ever intention to keep reading.  I’ll have a review for it up by this weekend.


Books Purchased This Week: 2

Title: Hollow City
Series Title: Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children
Author: Ransom Riggs
Date Added: September 25, 2016
Date Purchased: February 18, 2017

Media: Paperback
Price: $8.79
Retailer: Target

Title: Cinder
Series Title: The Lunar Chronicles
Author: Marissa Meyer
Date Added: January 16, 2016
Date Purchased: February 18, 2017

Media: Paperback
Price: $7.99
Retailer: Target

This is why I shouldn’t be allowed in a Target without supervision.  I’ve already talked about why I’m interested in Hollow City here, but since I added Cinder before I started doing my weekly SOTR posts, I’ve never actually talked about why it found its why on my TBR list in the first place.  It’s a retelling of Cinderella where the titular character is a cyborg mechanic, reviled by her stepmother (just like the other fairy tale princess) in addition to being a second class citizen.  The story is more complicated by sinister lunar observers waiting to make their move on our planet (Lunarians anyone?), and I’m sure our intrepid, mechanical heroine will have a major role to play in thwarting this.


Books Received This Week: 2

fullsizerender-2I’m still figuring this purchased/received thing out.  Since I purchased these two last week, I put them in last update’s Purchased section, but since they were bought online, I didn’t receive them until this week.  Whereas I bought the two books purchased above from Target yesterday, but I didn’t take a picture of them *organizational issue meltdown*

I think what I’m going to do going forward is to note down the day I purchased something, but I won’t include it in my SOTR until I have the volume in my hot, little hand.  Maybe I’ll rename the section Books Purchased and Received This Week.  Yes.  Yes, I like this very much.  I will perfect my organization mwa ha ha ha.

Anyway, I definitely wanted to show a picture of Riddled With Senses since it’s by someone I know!  Fellow blogger and writer Inkbiotic who has been providing excerpts to her story on her blog (the latest one being here), and from what I’ve read, it’s going to be phenomenal.  I love the taste of the language and am already a big fan of magical realism.  It’ll be the next book in my fantasy, sci-fi, general fiction rotation once I complete Prospero Lost. 

The Dark Portal just arrived today and was recommended to me through Goodreads due to my love of RedwallIt has a section that introduces all of the characters.  I’m really hoping it’s not a “all mice are good/all rats are evil” motif, because Redwall does enough of that.

Update:  *sigh* It does seem to be an “all mice are good/all rats are evil” motif.  Oh well.


Books Currently Reading: 6

Title: The Clockwork Scarab
Series Title: Stoker and Holmes
Author: Colleen Gleason
Date Added: August 1, 2016
Date Started: February 21, 2017

Media: Kindle
Progress: 4%

Since I finished The Missing Orchid, that meant a new Kindle book needed to be picked (FYI: I really need to load more books onto my Kindle).  I initially started reading Dolor and Shadow, but it really didn’t hold my attention.  I’m not going to scrap it from my TBR list just yet, but this retelling/re-gendering of Sherlock Holmes and Bram Stoker seems like it will be a fun read.

So far the two young ladies have met up with Irene Adler (the woman) and are about to be given what I’m assuming is the novel’s main mystery/plot point.  So far it’s been written from Holmes’s point of view, and I like her voice.  It has a crisp, fresh feel to it.  I’m curious to see where it all goes.

Title: Prospero Lost
Series Title: Prospero’s Daughter
Author: L. Jagi Lamplighter
Date Added: June 19, 2016
Date Started: February 11, 2017

Media: Hardback
Progress: 18%

This book is interesting and fun.  I have a few minor issues with it.  It introduces a lot of ideas at once, and it’s hard to keep them straight, but the characters of Miranda and Mab are a nice “odd couple” (though they’re not an OC by any means), and the author is excellent at leaving cliffhangers at the end of each chapter.

Title: The Illustrated A Brief History of Time/The Universe in a Nutshell
Author: Stephen Hawking
Date Added: June 25, 2016
Date Started: January 2, 2016

Media: Paperback
Progress: 31%

I finished the chapter on the color of black holes and am now on the one about the origin and fate of the universe.  To be honest, the black hole chapters weren’t all that interesting, but I think I’ll really enjoy the origin chapter.

It seems appropriate that I’m reading this volume at a time when NASA just discovered seven earth sized exoplanets orbiting a dwarf star 40 light years away.  At least one of the planets could be in the “sweet spot” for liquid water, which means it could support life.  It’s pretty freaking exciting.  I suppose seven is a lucky number 😉

Well…it didn’t take my troll brain too long to go off on a horror/horrifying tangent, and now I’m terrified, but it’s still exciting.

Title: The Dream Thieves
Series Title: The Raven Cycle
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Date Added: January 23, 2017
Date Started: January 26, 2017

Media: Kindle
Progress: 62%

Ms. Stiefvater is doing an excellent job fleshing out the character of Ronan, who took more of a backseat to Gansey in the first novel, but she’s not doing very much to help me decide how I feel about him.  This is a good thing, because I love complex characters.  Ronan does things that are utterly reckless and pointedly stupid, and reasons are not excuses.  I know more about him and his situation than ever before in The Raven Boys, and I’m hoping the more we find out, the more sense some of his terrible choices are going to make.

Title: The Mabinogion Tetralogy
Author: Evangeline Walton
Date Added: August 24, 2014
Date Started: July 31, 2016

Medium: Paperback
Progress: 66%

I have to say the characters in this final branch are my least favorite of them all.  They swindled a character who was featured in a prior branch out of his swine and are now acting utterly entitled to them by virtue of thievery.  It’s not so much Gwydion and his brother GIlvaethwhy, but rather Gwidion’s men.  Granted Gwidion did initiate the trick, so he must’ve felt justified in doing it.  I’m hoping there’s some grand, godly design to this plan, otherwise the Old Tribes are going to seem like complete asses in this section.

Title: “Beta Reading”
Author: High School Friend/Fellow Author
Date Added: N/A
Date Started: February 14, 2017
Media: PDF/Kindle
Progress: 50%

As mentioned before I can’t say much about this story, but I will say it’s great.  There are a lot of complex issues and emotions going on, and my writer friend is dealing with them so well.  Since we’ve been friends since high school, I know a bit about some of his personal beliefs, and he’s not handling them shallowly in this story.  The “bad guy” is sympathetic (surprise, I like that!) even though he’s a total douche, and this goes back to reasons for horrendous behavior not being excuses.  I feel bad for him, but not so bad I wouldn’t run him over with my SUV.


Fanfictions Finished: 0

Fanfictions Currently Reading: 1

Title: I’m the Darkness, You’re the Starlight
Author: runicmagitek
Fandom: FFVI
Pairing: Celes Chere/Setzer Gabbiani

You know an author is doing a great job when you want to smack all three of the characters in the love triangle.  Holy lord.  This really speaks to the philosophy of the outside point of view.  When your own emotions aren’t on the line, it’s far easier to be objective.

Fanfictions Added to TBR List: 0


Books Added to Goodreads TBR List This Week: 3

Title: Raising Stony Mayhall
Author: Daryl Gregory
Date Added: February 18, 2017

When I saw Cupcakes and Machetes’ review of this I knew that name sounded familiar, the author, not the title.  I’ve read AND reviewed Mr. Gregory before.  One of my first reviews actually: The Devil’s Alphabet.  It was a novel of great potential that missed the shift to a higher gear.  It seems that Gregory is a sort of a hit or miss novelist, and according to C and M, Stony is more of a hit.  We started talking about it in her review of another book We Are All Complety Fine found here.

Stony is a different take on zombies, and since I’ve already added a few books from Cupcakes and Machetes about the same thing, I figured why break up a good streak?  Granted I haven’t read them yet, but it’s the potential that counts.

Title: The Children of Húrin
Series Title: Middle-Earth Universe
Authors: J. R. R. Tolkien & Christopher Tolkien
Date Added: February 22, 2017

I remember finding this book in a Target years ago, but I didn’t buy it for whatever reason (I was probably trying to save money lol what the hell was I thinking?).  I forgot about it until I saw it in my Goodreads newsfeed.  It’s one of the many unreleased Tolkien books that the master of fantasy never revealed before he died.  I think there was some controversy with Peter Jackson wanting to use some of this content for the movies, and the original Tolkien’s son Christopher putting a stop to it, but the younger Tolkien did edit and release a bunch of works, The Children of Húrin being one of them.  Per the blurb, it sounds like it borrows from The Kalevala (shit…I need to add that, too), and since I’m a lover of ancient tales and mythology, I’m cautiously optimistic about this book.

Title: The Kalevala
Authors: Elias Lönnrot & Anonymous,
Translator: Keith Bosley
Date Added: February 22, 2017

I read snippets of stories from this when I was a child.  We had a Mythology Childcraft book (I loved those books.  Would love to find a set of them again), and in it was a story about the Sampo, which was a huge, magical MacGuffin in the Finnish tales.


Total Books on Goodreads TBR List: 551
Change from Last Week: -3

I did some clean up on my list this week.  I try to keep only the next book in a series on my list, and I had all of the Jeff Lindsey Dexters still on it.  Not that I didn’t love the first book (or the first seven seasons up until the disastrous last one that still could’ve been saved if they hadn’t utterly fucked up the finale grrrrr), but I figure it’s easier to just add them one at a time.


What are you currently reading and/or what’s on your radar to read next?  What would you recommend based on my current and recently added?  As always I look forward to your comments and suggestions!

<–The State of the Reader: 2/15/17          The State of the Reader: 3/1/17–>

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The State of the Gamer: 2/21/17

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<–The State of the Gamer: 2/14/17          The State of the Gamer: 2/28/17–>

A weekly post updated every Tuesday detailing my current gaming projects.  I have quite a backlog of games to either play or watch, and I’m hoping a weekly article will assist with my progress as my other accountable posts have done with reading and writing.
I have an account at Grouvee, which is a essentially Goodreads for gamers, so please feel free to friend me there!
Original source of the banner art is located here.

Title: Journey
Genre: Adventure, Art
Developer: Thatgamecompany
Original Platforms: PlayStation 3
Original Release Date: March 13, 2012
Current Platform: PlayStation 4
Current Platform Release Date: July 21, 2015
Date Purchased: January 21, 2017
Date Started: February 11, 2017

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No progress on this one this week.  I decided to start another game by thatgamecompany (discussed below), but I”ll probably play more of this tomorrow (Wednesday).

Title: Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls
Series: Final Fantasy
Genre: RPG – Fantasy
Developer: Square/Tose (GBA)
Original Platform: NES
Original Release Date: December 18, 1987
Current Platform: Gameboy Advance
Current Platform Release Date: July 29, 2004
Date Started: November 20, 2016

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Nope again.  I just can’t seem to find time to fit this into the rotation.

Title: Final Fantasy IV
Series: Final Fantasy
Genre: RPG – Fantasy
Developer: Square
Original Platform: SNES
Original Release Date: July 19, 1991
Current Platform: Game Boy Advance
Current Platform Release Date: December 12, 2005
Date Started: October 24. 2016

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Yes!  I finished the Tower of Zot and am currently in Baron with the Magma Stone in my possession.  My next stop is Agart and the underground.

Title: World of Final Fantasy
Series: Final Fantasy
Genre: RPG – Fantasy
Developer: Square Enix
Platform(s): PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita
Release Date: October 25, 2016
Date Bought: October 21, 2016
Date Started: November 5, 2016
Date Finished(?): February 19, 2017

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So I’ve seen the real and official ending credits, but there’s still more game to go.  I don’t think this is too spoilery, since I”m not giving any story elements away, but after you complete the second (real) ending, three new gates appear in the Girl’s Tearoom.  They’re optional dungeons with a boss fight at the end of them, and that boss fight is the “dark” versions of the Shiva, Ramuh, and Ifrit mirages.  All of them.  You fight a stacked version of “dark” Shiva, Mishiva, and Babliz; Ramuh, Zaphyr, and Zapt; and Ifrit, Affrite, and Fritt.  You can only catch the the littlest mirage in each stack (receiving mementos for the other ones), and the largest mirage will restack immediately if toppled once their turn comes back up.  Of course there’s a trick to it lol.  I’ve managed to catch dark Bablizz or Brrblizz so far, and I’m going to go after at least Joult (dark Zapt) tomorrow.

Since I’ve seen the (actual) credits, I think I can count this as a finish, but I’ll put another date once I finish off all the extras and have every single mirage.  This could also be my way of putting off writing a review lol, which I’m actually looking forward to doing.

Title: fLOw
Genre: Life Simulation
Developer: Thatgamecompany & SuperVillain Studios
Platform(s): Adobe Flash, PlayStation 3, PSP, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita
Release Date:  April 14, 2016
Date Bought: November 12, 2016
Date Started: February 20, 2017
Date Finished: February 20, 2017

I decided to give this game a whirl yesterday, and it’s not really my cup of tea.  I think the main reason is my utterly horrible sense of direction.  You have to guide your little creature by turning the controller this way and that, and I’m not good at that.  I believe it’s the same controls in Journey, but I’m better able to navigate that more two dimensional plane.  So in terms of TSN’s playing of fLOw, I’ve gone with it, and I’m done.  I’m not going to rate or review it, because it’s mostly my bad sense of direction that stymied my playing efforts, and it’s not fair to judge a game because of my foibles.

I do count this as a “complete” for my Four in February since I am done playing it, and with WOFF done (at least technically), I’ve finished two with seven days left to go.


Games Currently Watching

Title: Ys: The Vanished Omens
Series: Ys
Genre: Action RPG – Fantasy
Developer: Nihon Falcon
Original Platform: Multiple
Original Release Date: June 21, 1987
Let’s Player: Hungry Goriya
Date Started: February 13, 2017

Whenever the next update is, I’ll be watching.  The field music is so epic, and I’m enjoying the experience of different RPGs and alternative battle systems.

Title: Mass Effect III
Series: Mass Effect
Genre: Action RPG – Sci-Fi
Developer: BioWare
Original Platform(s): Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3
Original Release Date: March 6, 2012
Let’s Player: Olizandri
Date Started: January 23, 2017

The next episode is going to contain Wrex, so I’m excited about that.

I’m also going to need to start watching an LP of the first ME again, because AmbiGaming is now playing it.  You can check out her Let’s Play here 🙂

When I start watching it, I’ll include it in my Watch list, but I wanted to provide the info so that you all can beat me to it hehe.


Games Added to Playlist: 5

My “drug dealer” strikes again, and he’s not sorry.  He admitted it in the comments!  I don’t remember what post, but he knows who he is!  But I’m not sorry either.  I want to broaden my JRPG and RPG horizons, and the best way to do that is to play non-Final Fantasy JRPGs.  Now FF is always going to be my favorite (we all already know that), but I do love me some sweet compare/contrasts, and I’ve never been one to complain about experiencing new stories (though you will hear me constantly bitch about not having enough time).

  1. Blue Dragon
  2. Lost Odyssey
  3. Magna Carta: Tears of Blood
  4. Infinite Discovery
  5. Tales of Vesperia

I already have Tales of Berseria on my list, but Vesperia was suggested, too, so why not.  All the RPGs!


What are you currently playing and/or watching? Is it something new or old?  Is it a first time run or a replay?  What’s the genre?  Would you recommend it?  What’s on your radar to play next?

<–The State of the Gamer: 2/14/17          The State of the Gamer: 2/28/17–>

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The State of the Writer: 2/19/17

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<–The State of the Writer: 2/12/17          The State of the Writer: 2/26/17–>

A weekly post updated every Sunday discussing my current writing projects and where I stand with them.  This will include any and all work(s) in progress (WIP) be they creative writing, essays/analyses, or reviews of any type.

Project: Story
Title:
The Broken Rose
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Type: Fanfiction (FFVII) Novel
Current Word Count: 274,050
Prior Word Count: 274,545
Word Difference: -495
Status: Editing
Progress: 1st edit of Chapter 8

white-ribbon-shoes-2

I spent yesterday organizing my notes more and planning to add them into the story, but I was too tired after organization to bring the latter plan to fruition.  I’ll work on it today hopefully before it gets dark.  I’m supremely happy I don’t have work tomorrow.

There’s a break in this chapter that may or may not become a new chapter.  I haven’t quite decided yet.  Like I said out of all of the “earlier” chapters I wrote, Chapter 8 needs the most attention.  I think I’ve cut the most out of this one so far.  That would be something I could potentially keep track of: how many words I cut out per chapter.  I just love keeping track of figures lol.

Quote: This tiny maid who’d been so abused was now dripping in luxury.  She slipped on flat shoes as light as her skirt, adorned in white ribbons as well.  Maybe they’d go out to greet the great sea.  She wasn’t sure due to the rain. 


Project: Essay
Title: Half a Tragedy Is Worse Than Whole
Subject: FFVII Comparative and Meta
Current Word Count: 1436
Prior Word Count: 1436
Word Difference: 0
Status: Drafting
Progress: N/A

I actually had the plan to work on this this weekend, and since I have an extended one (weekend that is) I may get some words in tomorrow.  According to my notes and outline, I’m about halfway done with it, and I also had some “contrarian” inspiration.

I become riotously annoyed when people purposely attack me for my Sephiroth love, and even more so when they do it under the guise of being fans of him.  The internet is a dramatic place.

I’d commented on a Deviant Art photo of the Great General where he’s holding and contemplating the Black Materia as if he’s not sure what to make of it.  It could be a brief moment of clarity from the eldritch noise where a sliver of himself comes through or it could be a (speculative) time afterwards where he’s thinking about what he’s done, or it could just be his impassive, already indoctrinated “I’m going to kill everyone” face.  Either way, sexiness exudes.

One Winged Angel by Meramii
One Winged Angel by Meramii

The creator of the picture is a person after my own heart.  Despite only experiencing the game in AMVs, she had sympathy towards Sephiroth, which I readily supported in the comments.  Another Deviant Art member whom I’ve had dealings with (she sent me an FFVII fanfiction to review/critique.  It didn’t hold my interest for a variety of reasons, the main one being it wasn’t about Aeriseph and painted Sephiroth in a bad light), decided she was going to engage me in conversation about my favorite general.  She said something a bit scathing about him, and I know I should’ve just let it go, but I’m a bullheaded Taurus, the horns came out, and I responded to instant regret.  I ignored all of her subsequent replies, because I realized I had absolutely no interest having any discourse with her about the subject.  She responded around three times before taking the hint.  Then she messaged me on tumblr with an apology of sorts, but I’d already decided I’d had enough.

A month or so ago, she’d messaged me, requesting I get in touch with another tumblr user who’d blocked her.  This should’ve been a red flag.  When I messaged the other user (who is another Sephiroth fan), she told me in no uncertain terms that the person in question had made her tumblr experience miserable.  She’d purposely say shit about her, then act disingenuous by liking or replying positively about Sephiroth posts.  I realized what I was dealing with (and found out that’s also around 19.  I don’t like to be ageist, but immaturity is a very viable reason for this behavior) and decided I’m way too old for this shit.  I have no desire to deal with the drama that sometimes comes with fandoms.  I have a live and let live attitude towards them.  You like this ship (pairing)?  Go ahead and read, draw, and share pictures of it.  If I don’t like that particular ship, I’ll just scroll past, because what you like doesn’t affect me.

Unfortunately, some people like to be combative and they have this attitude that everyone must like the same thing, nor can they understand why others may like a particular character (now I’m guilty of this, too, because why the fuck does anyone like that psychopathic, complete monster Hojo or eldritch abomination Jenova?  But I don’t go to fan pages dedicated to them and start trouble, because I am an adult). 

Huh, I really didn’t mean to digress on the drama that can occur in the FFVII fandom.  The point I wanted to make was the experience galvanized me a bit, and now I’m more interested and inspired to continue writing my Greek Tragedy comparative essay.  I’ve also learned to just walk away from certain arguments (this is advantageous in the current political climate, too.  Some things are just not worth arguing about/engaging with.  Your energy is better served elsewhere like in drinking wine or eating ice cream).  I don’t wish to engage in discourse with people who are either disingenuous ( as in attempting to reel you in by seeming to like what you like only to use it as an opportunity to bash it.  Seriously?  Who the fuck has time to do that?) or people whose minds won’t change no matter how much evidence you present.  To be honest…this is a pretty good overall lesson.  Fight the worthwhile battles and leave the rest.

We’ll see if I get to work on the essay tomorrow.  I’m supposed to take all of our rings (mine and my husband’s wedding bands and my emerald and ruby) in for cleaning.  I want to do that first thing in the morning so it’ll all depend on how my energy levels look afterwards.


In good news I’m currently caught up on all my book reviews.  I posted the “unfinished” one for Vassa in the Night late last week, and I’ve started going through and working on some of the blogger tags/awards I still have on my checklist (two more left!) and quicker essays.  I’m also toying with the idea of creating my own award, so stay turned for that.  I don’t want to give out too many details and ruin the surprise 🙂

I also tested out my Yeti microphone this weekend with and without the pop filter, and it sounds really good.  The pop filter definitely makes a difference, and my voice is started to get better since I’m now taking pills instead of an inhaled powder for my asthma (it’s a temporary reprieve, but I think my doctor wants to reexamine my medical regime for asthma management).  Maybe next week I’ll make a legitimate recording.  Then I have to figure out how I’m going to get it on here hm.  I do still want to upgrade this blog to premium, but I’m trying to wait a few months.  It’s the same price as an Amazon Prime membership, but I pay that in January, and I’d like to not have that amount of money come out of my account so close together.  If WordPress does it month by month, that would be so much better.  $8.33 per month is very doable.

I think I’ll do the 30 Day Video Game Challenge next week…all in one day.  I can work time like that.


What are you currently working on?  Is it a creative writing project, essay, review, or something else?  Have you just started something new or are you wrapping up a long term project?

<–The State of the Writer: 2/12/17          The State of the Writer: 2/26/17–>

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