Last Week’s Gaming – October 29th, 2018

Kingdom Hearts 3 PAXAUS

Who would have thought a road trip and PAX Aus stops you playing games?

So PAX had a slightly higher video game turnout this year, possibly with the addition of EB Expo having something to do with it.

Tabletop wise there were a lot of games around, but almost all of them were also representing last year so there was little new I was excited about.  But I still got to play a lot, which is amazing given the amount of things on!

Qwirkle Cubes

Ahhh Qwirkle.  It’s like a simple version of Scrabble with shapes and colours.  Anyone that tells you it’s relaxing is not playing with the same cutthroat, win at all costs people I am playing with.

That’s probably a good thing 🙂

A night out at Welcome to Thornbury with good friends was great, and a game of Qwirkle Cubes capped the night off.  The staff were great at letting us just play, and it made me remember why I enjoy this game in the first place!

Qwirkle Cubes
Fun game, very table efficient, and always a heap of fun!

Octopath Traveler

Yeah, you knew this was going to be back on the list.  Another chapter finished for one of my crew, and trying to get the infamous Nintendo Switch PAX pin by playing in line was a great excuse to pull out the Switch!

My enthusiasm for Octopath isn’t waning, but the curve for grinding levels seems to be hitting a point.  I can’t go into too much detail without going into spoiler territory, but finishing the arena contest with one underpowered character was a definite disadvantage.

Octopath Traveler 20181029
It may not look like much progress, but after the last couple of weeks it was more than enough 🙂

Jackbox

A party favourite, I have played different Jackbox games over the years, mainly being an audience member at the PAX Jackbox panels.

This year I jumped into a game in the PAX BYOC (Bring Your Own Computer) section, and played a game called Patently Stupid where you have to draw different silly ideas.

And somehow I came back in the second round to take the game and win my first PAX medal!

Jackbox
Jackbox - always a great party game to reveal how terrible people can be 😀

Beat Saber

I love me some Beat Saber.

While I own this and can play it at home, I can play it in a slightly cramped way.

The good news over PAX was I got to play with the Vive wireless dongle and new base stations, which will help me play in a much more open area soon!

But the bottom line is Beat Saber is still great.  For more information, check out my Early Access impressions.

I can’t wait for this to come out on PSVR as well – firstly for the ‘whole’ game, secondly for so many more people to start playing this great game!

Beat Saber PAXAUS
Ahhh Beat Saber. Angel Voices Hard with no walls was great! Best overheard comment - "it's not as easy as he makes it look"

Dark Souls Remastered

So lining up for Diablo 3 on the Switch (which I didn’t end up playing), I got the chance to play some Dark Souls.

Now the closest I ever came to playing this was Bloodborne that I haven’t even beaten the first boss, so I am far from the worlds greatest souls player.  I struggle to even be considered a souls player.

That said, I was surprised at how smoothly Dark Souls Remastered played in handheld mode on the Switch.  I have a few big games to play and get through (including Octopath Traveler), but the 10-15 minutes I played has me considering getting this on the Switch.

Dark Souls Remastered
I was too busy playing to get a shot 🙁

Kingdom Hearts 3

What can I say – it was more Kingdom Hearts!

There are new systems but the overall feel was instantly familiar, and the demo was timed to objectives met not actual time played.

This was an incredibly fun experience that was both amazing and cruel – I have to wait until next year to sit and play it properly on my home system!

Kingdom Hearts 3 PAXAUS
Couldn't get a shot as I played, but running around Andy's Bedroom was great 🙂 I can't wait to play this properly next year!

There were so many amazing games also played in the PAX Rising area as well, with a large percentage played being made in Australia and even locally in Melbourne!

I managed to snaggle a couple of steam keys as well, so those games will get a bit more of a write up in the coming weeks.

What about you?  What have you been playing this week?  Let me know on Twitter or the Facebook page!

Until next time,

JohnHQLD

The PAX Aus 2018 Schedule is live, and the Enigma Box is coming!

Pax Australia 2018

When PAX Aus makes your day better a month early!

So yesterday at work I was having one of those Thursdays.  From the moment I rolled out of bed, everything had been full speed ahead into every brick wall in sight, and was like that all day.

But late yesterday I took a break to read my emails, and lo and behold there was one from PAX Australia!  I was hoping it was saying my tickets were in the mail, but really next best thing:

The PAX Aus 2018 Schedule is now live.

I will be sitting down over the weekend and trying to make some choices, but it is always hard at PAX.  There are a lot of great panels all through the three days, and as usual, there are so many things that I want to see and do that all overlap.

This year, the opening Storytime is with Rhianna Pratchett.  The daughter of Sir Terry Pratchett, many gamers have experience Rhianna’s work for years and probably never realised.  And then the choices just get harder.

Gameifying Government, or Mental Health Representation in video games?  They may sound niche, but I am interested in both topics and would love to hear what’s happening.

As usual, so many things to see, so many overlapping!

LoadingReadyRun Live is the chance to see some great creators live as I have wanted for years.  But at the same time, there is the annual Dungeon Crawl – always a worthy event.  But overlapping both events is Outside Xbox and Outside Xtra hosting the first ever PAX Movie night!  Another team of creators I love to leave watch to cheer me up, I’m already torn for which to go and see 🙁  Seriously if you enjoy gaming and want a smile, watch Show of the Weekend with Ellen and Luke.  Luke’s puns are usually awful, but Ellen just has an infectious exuberance about her that is fun to watch 🙂

Unfortunately, this year Gabe (Mike Krahulik) cannot attend PAX Aus.  While for selfish reasons this is disappointing, I am really glad that he can feel comfortable discussing such personal issues with the community as a whole.  Even better, it is wonderful seeing such acceptance and support from the community as well.  It’s this kind of atmosphere that makes PAX very special to me.

I was really hoping to see how the adventures of the Star Wars themed Acquisitions Inc. game continued, but the “C” Team will be just as much a blast to see in person 🙂

It’s important to note that the schedule is not yet complete.  There are still some to be confirmed panels, and there is no tournament information yet.  However looking at the filters, there is a VR tourney option – this could be fun 🙂 I need to put the Vive back on now…

The other little surprise I got today is my Enigma Box is finally on its way.  I have been waiting eagerly for this for a couple of months now.  Partly this was the anticipation of getting a great project and partly fueled by some updates saying things were ready to ship.

Late July and early August, there was information that the boxes were being sent in waves, with the furthest people getting it first as it takes longer to travel.  Living in Australia, I was ecstatic as we are normally near the end of the process!  So much escape room logic puzzle deductions were being planned it was great 😀

Then I found out basically the US was getting it first.  Last time I checked, Australia is further that Spain and the UK than the US is.  So much for the geography clues guys :p

Really though the last is just a playful jab – the box is coming, and around when we were told it would be when the shipping was clarified.  Very happy John waiting for games night Tuesday to see it in person for the first time!

I got my notification and all going well I will get my box Tuesday next week.  This may be the subject of one of those live Facebook videos I talked about yesterday – watch and see!

I hope everyone has a great Friday, and I will catch you later 🙂

Until then,

JohnHQLD