Transit. That’s when I typically bring my phone up for gaming. I’ll flit between email, Twitter and a short gasp of play like Threes if it’s a jaunt to the mall, something more substantial if I’m expecting to be out for a while. It’s mostly a means of distraction while I’m away from the more rooted experience of gaming at my desk. With that in mind, the irony that Jules Verne inspired iOS game 80 Days held my attention while I was entirely stationary isn’t lost on me.
From the gaslit streets of London to clear skies over Cairo, carried by the groaning legs of the ambulatory marvel of Agra or a boat permeated by the scent of overripe bananas, the places you go and the ways you get there are only ever half the story…
I couldn’t pick the perfect jacket. One, slightly too dark to be called camel, had an appealing texture but would have been difficult to coordinate. The other, a classic black, wasn’t terribly unique or inspiring but promised to match just about anything I could throw at it. I couldn’t afford both if I still hoped to visit the salon that afternoon. Of course it was still early. I could always wait until I had another heist under my belt, at which point I’d have enough disposable income to buy every last jacket in Los Santos, stuff them into the trunk of my car, and drive them straight into the Pacific Ocean if I wanted to.
There are three new episodes of Let’s Play 20+ Years of Sailor Moon in the series playlist now starting with the one embedded above. This time Ali and I are playing Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon Collection for the PC Engine/Turbografx-16 as well as listening to audio files from the BSSM PCE visual novel game we recently finished. I’d be lying if I said this was my favourite stream, and we may end up revisiting this one, as my penchant for blind playing kind of bit me in the ass.
… But even so, the butt-bumping minigame made it all worthwhile.
You can find that lumpy Luna gif here, the sidebar art used here, and the full Sailor Moon LP playlist (where I’ve been making my way through 20+ years of Sailor Moon video games in more-or-less chronological order) here.
I load into the world, immediately greeted by some of the absolute silkiest beats I’ve heard in a while. I’m a redheaded bartender of Irish origin by the name of Boyle, though my middle name might be “Stereotype” (mum was very postmodern like that.)
I’m briefed on my missions, both personal and professional, before I step out on deck to greet the other guests. My first conversation is polite but probing. I know that there are spies on board — I’m one of them, and I have a strong interest in finding the others. I offer a passenger a tumbler of whiskey as she tells me about her career in Hollywood. She offers me her autograph but I politely decline before asking her if she’d heard anything about the local oil concerns who have been in fierce competition lately. Instead of exchanging autographs, we then exchange identification devices.
I overhear another conversation nearby. My coworker aboard this yacht, a smartly dressed and thin-lipped woman named Mary, has approached a wealthy European playboy and demanded…
Between the base game, the expansions, the stuff packs, the store content, the mods, and of course the sim lives created, every game in the series can be a tremendous investment of both time and money. And then the new game comes out, and you’re back at square one. Even though it is a brand new game, even though the older game doesn’t go anywhere, it still feels like (and is most often described as) a loss. It’s a huge mental hurdle for many players to get over, and one that I personally struggled with when The Sims 3 came out back in 2009.
But this time around, I’m not. I’m actually, strangely enough, looking forward to losing it all. Here’s why:
On Tuesday, many members of The Sims 3 community were invited to test out The Sims 4 Create-a-Sim Demo on EA’s Origin distribution platform, ahead of the demo’s public release later this summer. I was lucky enough to be among them, so I spent the better part of yesterday evening pushing, pulling, pinching and tweaking my way through the very familiar and simultaneously very alien systems.
So how was it? There were lots of things I loved, a few things I hated, and a couple things I can’t wait to learn more about as we approach The Sims 4’s launch date. Until then, here are my thoughts on the Create-a-Sim demo: