Tag Archive: first world problems

A Sign the Apocalypse is Upon Us

I just got back from my 10 day trip down under – 7 days in NZ and 3 in AUS. I love traveling and very fortunate that I get to travel for work – and my company is a fan of the Work-cation. The work-cation is a great concept – since the company is paying to fly you somewhere already, might as well take a couple extra days and experience where you are instead of rushing in and out. Glad to be back and not to be a sap, but I missed you.

I felt naked down under because Wifi is not free, not fast, and entirely inconvenient. Even my $250 a night hotel only had 15 minutes free and in the lobby only. Oh, you can pay for internet in your room but only if you have an Ethernet cable connection (direct only). Computers still have those?

Thankfully Starbucks is there but even then you only get an hour and when it runs out you have to buy another coffee or they won’t top you up.

We are spoiled in North America with free, unadulterated WiFi all over the place. My CITY has free wifi. In fact, I am writing this post at a city owned arena on my phone.

Life is rough.

I felt like I was in a third world WiFi country that was under attack by the Russians. I even started asking around if anyone knew J3w3l but was afraid she would think me an extraordinary stalker for traveling so far to borrow her Wifi.

And none of this has to do with the purpose of this blog post. The title of which I borrowed from Gregg Easterbrook at Tuesday Morning Quarterback who in many of his articles (not the one I linked) shares societal insights on why the Apocalypse truly must be coming. (He’s a fun read if you like smart people and fantasy football. He’s the Zubon of ESPN.com)

So here is what happened this morning that makes me think it is indeed on its way. It’s picture day for my son’s hockey team. Usually that means getting to the rink an hour early, getting in full equipment (except helmets), lining the team up for a group photo, getting some individual shots (faux action, normally) then ordering a package with the team shot to remember the season it was, and also a bunch of actual hockey cards that are cool to hand out to friends and family. As you can imagine, it can sometimes be tough to get all the kids on time and lined up well in full gear. It takes some time and coordination. No fear, they have a new solution.

Photoshop.

There was no team photo this year. Instead, They are going to build one from the individual shots. I am sure that will look perfectly natural.

Next, instead of playing real hockey they will just all login together and play NHL 15 three times a week. Driving to the rink is so inconvenient.

Refusing to Repeat Content

One challenge with all these fun beta and alpha tests (WildStar and Landmark, respectively) is that I don’t want to play too long or too far – because I know when the game launches, if I decide to play, I will have to do this all over again. Also, if the beta is a “doomed to fail” game, I also don’t play too far or too long – why invest the time?

Hitting my 40’s and realizing how precious and valuable my time is finally.

It’s a balance – “free” gaming time (for WildStar, since it is a sub) vs losing out on the launch experience. What if I zoom through the early levels, confident I already experienced it? What if they changed something?

Landmark is free, but as mentioned in other spaces why grind it out only to have to grind it out again when launch happens.

I thought I was outsmarting the process in WS because I played exclusively Exile during beta – so I could play Dominion (the other faction) at launch. I would still have a comfort with UI/controls/systems but a whole new world to explore. However, after playing with the Character Creator for the dominion side and the starting areas (briefly) I’m not sure I am digging the tone of the Dominion.

Dammit, I have preserved the experience I most likely won’t want to enjoy. (lots of guessing here… it hasn’t launched yet!)

Open beta starts on the 8th, and I encourage everyone to try it. This is going to be one of the largest launches of this year MMO wise, love or hate it.

As silly as this entire train of thought is, I find I am far less likely to play through until end of Beta/Alpha tests generally if I am not enjoying the experience, and/or if I *am* enjoying the experience. I don’t want to waste my time / waste the live experience, after all.