Last Week’s Gaming – April 6th, 2020


I thought I did a lot of gaming last week. Turns out not so much. I did catch some early warning signs though.

On the whole though, I haven’t played a lot. Not for lack of want or ability – I could have played more with Alpal and/or Rabbit. Reality kicked in with how easily I slipped back into bad work/life habits though.

I roll out of bed in the morning and start work. Maybe 10 minutes between getting out of bed and hitting work mode. This is normal, and happens about 5:30 am. But after essentials are relegated, prioritised or completed, I then used to get an hour’s drive to work to reset. Without the drive, I can sleep in until 6:30 🙂

The work day continues until tasks are done (with interruptions and new tasks added, as is always the way isn’t it?), about 5ish when I would normally get home (not normally end the day – normally get home), or until I mentally just can’t anymore.

It’s the last one that ends my day lately.

This has led to 3 weeks of pushing 12 hour+ days again. I don’t like what those days do to me.

Because I have been working from home, I lose things like the forced ‘downtime’ of my hour long commute each way. While people often complain about commuting, for me this time is essential to be able to walk in the door without worrying about work. If I come home and have to continue to work, it is truly important and the exception, not the norm.

Why am I going on about all this? I thought I got a lot of gaming in because I used a lot of a small amount of ‘me’ time playing games. This changed late Saturday, when I basically got to spend the rest of the weekend on the couch with Rabbit watching TV and just enjoying each others company.

While you are staying at home for this extended period, don’t forget to set your routines and stick to them! It is easier to burn yourself out at home where you can’t get away from work/stress/yourself/etc. I know the traps and signs, and I still let myself get trapped again!

I took a ‘me’ day a couple of weeks ago that I still worked for about 5 hours. Doesn’t sound like much, but it was enough to make the day worthless for recovery purposes.

Take a ‘me’ day every week, but truly take one. Look after yourselves, and don’t burn yourselves out!

That’s enough of the deep and meaningful stuff – what did I get to play last week!

Potion Explosion – Android

Here is a perfect example of how you can lose track of time. I thought last week I set myself a challenge to pick different potions and professors. It was coming up to 3! It was two weeks ago today I set a challenge to change up my ‘normal’ play combinations.

I used to beat the AI fairly often, and fairly handily. Changing the potions and professors alters the game in deeper ways than people realise, and forces you to find new combinations.

Spoiler alert – I didn’t pick new potions. Or professors. I only got in two games. But they were the games I needed. Picking up Potion Explosion just felt right while sitting on the couch.

I don’t think I will ever feel tired of it. And I just realised I never formally reviewed it! That will need to be fixed soon.

Potion Explosion
I have played enough recently to get back into the swing. This is why I need to change up my potions!

Control – PS4

Control is an absolutely insane game. Not the longest game out there, replay value started to wane even in my short time with it.  The Foundation expansion came out just as I finished the main game, and kept asking me to play it when I was chasing the Platinum.

If you like Twin Peaks, Dune and weird story plots and turn of that nature, you will probably enjoy Control. Mass appeal wise, I think the problem is not many people do enjoy those paranormal/doubt your senses type stories, especially in what looks like a third person shooter.

My review of Control is coming, and is a lot better (and a lot different) than you probably think. If you see it on sale at the moment, you could do a lot worse than picking up Control.

Control Service Weapon
One of the less weird things about Control is that your gun changes shape. Itself.

Resident Evil 3 – PS4

Oh you knew this was coming. I played my first bit Friday night, replayed that section and a little more with Rabbit, and happily called it a night.

Then I just couldn’t get back into it come Saturday. This was actually one of my first wake up calls that I was pushing myself too hard – I just couldn’t pick up the controller.

After a proper day of rest, I played quite a bit more curled up next to Rabbit last night 🙂 This game is great. I am having fun exploring, and kicking myself for moving that little too far or rushing through a section without fully exploring. Rabbit is enjoying watching, and jumping alongside me when new (and not so new) enemies appear.

This will probably be ready for me to properly review soon. Resident Evil games tend to be on the shorter side, but you play through them multiple times. Until then, an hour a night isn’t too much, and I can calm down with the next game 😉

Resident Evil 3
You can see my video of Resident Evil 3 and my first impressions. The Nemesis doesn't muck around!

Animal Crossing: New Horizons – Switch

After hearing about everyone going on about Animal Crossing for years, I finally took the plunge.

In my great wisdom, I took the plunge at about 11:15 pm, Sunday night. This may have been a mistake, as I was playing to close to 1 am! So yes, technically, I was playing Animal Crossing this week instead of last week, but I am sure it counts :p

I have only just started, so I can’t really say too much about it. It was relaxing weeding what sections of the island I could get to. I have started fishing and catching bugs. Blathers is on his way, or at least I set up his tent.

If you don’t know Animal Crossing, most of what I just said makes no sense why it would be fun. But somehow, it is. It just works, and in the best possible way.

I have decided this week, Animal Crossing New Horizons is going to be my lunchtime downtime break, so expect to hear a lot more about this one. 🙂

Animal Crossing First Task Complete
Yes, people are days ahead of me. But that's not really the point of Animal Crossing.

What about you?  I hope you got some great games in.  Or are you looking forward to a new one?  Let me know!  Shout out on Facebook or @JohnHQLD me on Twitter!

Until tomorrow,

JohnHQLD