@Bowls: Torchlight 2 for sure this week. I’ve got to pick up a turkey on Tuesday so that we can have it for thanksgiving dinner on Monday, but otherwise I’m down.

We’ve been spending some time in Tokyo Jungle, but only in fits and starts. I have about a 45 minute window per day where TJ remains entertaining without being overly repetitive, so I’ll go in there and unlock an animal and get out. Kind of like doing a crossword or a sudoku. I’m in for the long haul with this one, no rush.

(Watching Lynette play) a lot of FTL, still loving it. Haven’t been able to take down the flagship yet, but we’ve fought it a few times and have reached at least Phase 2 of the battle where it jumps away after having the port side blown off and you have to start chasing it around the star map. Amazing stuff, and I have a ton to say about it. This is all percolating in a saved email that just keeps getting longer and longer, but I’ll let you know when it’s ready. Have you played this one yet Bowls? I have a feeling it’s up your alley.

Went back to play P4 Arena after totally throwing that game under the bus in favor of Sleeping Dogs when it came out last month. Unlocked about half the characters now, working my way through the CRAZY LONG story modes for each character. Press X for half an hour, 30 second fight, press X for half an hour, repeat. It’s a very good thing that I love these characters enough to do that because otherwise this kind of behavior would be madness.

The Last Story: Again, thrown under the bus and forgotten for about a month but it’s back on the table. My plan is to walk slowly towards the exit, crossing off sidequests on the way.

I feel strangely sad to be in the negative nitpicker camp on The Last Story and find myself agreeing with reviewers who imply in a roundabout way that maybe the Gooch or the JRPG have lost their touch. Don’t get me wrong, I like the characters well enough but for some reason TLS isn’t quite grabbing me the way I want to be manhandled by RPGs. It’s weird, because all the pins line up on this one: Non iterative (ish) combat, a decent crew with great quality voice acting, Uematsu on music. How can this hit me with such indifference? Answer: I guess just by being more of the same RPG that you’ve played a thousand times. Zael is neither memorable nor forgettable. Same quest, mystic destiny, secret maguffin given to the protagonist, save the world, spiky hair, forgotten being, moustache twirling villains. You can’t really go back from Persona that easily. I’ve got a touch of spiky haired burnout in the way that I have shooter fatigue.

Watched a bit of Misfits, played board games with friends. Took down the gazebo in the backyard for the winter. Good weekend. Good times.

Anyone else feel bad about RE6? Part of me is happy to see some people unafraid to take down a AAA franchise on charges of boring, seen-it-before style gameplay but I kinda wish it didn’t have to be Resident Evil that bears this particular mark of shame. So many western titles like Infamous, COD or what-have-you are just as guilty of trying so hard to be The Video Game ™ that they end up forgetting who they are. Stand for nothing, fall over, sure… but the RE series has long had such a strong identity about itself, you’d kinda hope they’d have learned from the mistakes of RE 5 and gone back to the more identifyable, goofy franchise dumb horror schlock roots.

I mean, Chris Redfield screaming about soldiers and shooting M-16s is the absolute opposite of what I was ever interested in when it came to the series. Leon doing suplexes, tiny midgets dressed as napoleon, railguns, green herb and STARS: Good. Also stupid huge scorpions or whatever: Yes. More of this.

Once you’ve played Spec Ops: The Line you’ve seen the current apex of where the bar currently is for the “Military guys chaotically scream at one another” genre. You just can’t go back to the weaksauce, no way.