Fantastic Resources and Where to Find Them: Delf’s Search for a Strategy Game

Back on Christmas Day (which was almost a month ago already, where does the time go?), I spent a couple of hours in the evening being somewhat… manic. I don’t recall precisely what initiated this, but for whatever reason I had pictured a specific kind of game in my head, and I was now tearing apart my collection or the internet in a frenzy to find and play it. It cascaded into me playing a handful of games since that point, trying to find something that would absolutely meet the requirements I was searching for.

From this, I ended up discarding or putting aside most of these games when they failed to achieve success, or else playing the ones I did stick with for incomplete or else different reasons. Most of these games I’ll speak about at length in the future (probably their own articles), but by now I feel like I should address the kind of game I was looking for.

In short, I was looking for quite possibly the nerdiest thing I could: a game of resource management, production chains, and logistics. And while I’m sure a few people could see that and immediately list off a few examples — just as I could, did, and started with in my search — I was looking for something more expansive. I don’t just want the end result of the chains, but the acquisition of the resources used, and the utilisation of these to allow me to expand or further my goals.

See, the first title I gravitated towards during my thought process and subsequent search was Black Desert Online. Besides the flashy and graphically striking action combat that the game sells as its main feature, it has a variety of “life skills” to complement this. You can set up farms, buy and sell trade resources in various markets that you can either manually carry or transport via wagons and boats (which you can build, and even breed better horses for), acquire property in towns that can be converted into production centres, and hire workers to work these centres or even gather the resources themselves from some areas if you didn’t feel like doing it yourself.

This was the part of the game that kept me playing for a lot longer than I expected previously. I would frequently go from place to place in order to figure out what resources were available, do smaller quests in order to open them up or else just farm contribution points that let me expand my sphere of influence, or just run trade routes back and forth in the background while doing other things. And it was this model that the manic searching for more games like this was based around.

So why didn’t I just play Black Desert Online when this mood struck me? Well… a few reasons.

Continue reading “Fantastic Resources and Where to Find Them: Delf’s Search for a Strategy Game”

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Some Games I Liked From 2018’s Second Half

For the games I liked from the first half, here’s a link to the post. Assuming you don’t want to scroll down a screen’s length, anyway. Don’t say I don’t look out for you~

Just as I am somehow delivering another (hopefully) great post within a week of the last one, so too did it seem that the second half of 2018 was dropping an intriguing title in our laps at much the same pace. This breakneck schedule seemed to continue pretty much until the first week of December, whereupon it took a quite breather for the holiday season and then is slated to get right back to it in just a few days.

Looking at you, Tales of Vesperia. Can’t even give me time to fully digest the FF14 patch updating as I write, can you?

So let’s get right back to it then. First, a couple of footnotes of sorts that I could have included from the first half, then right back to the second half of 2018, culminating in a quick talk about my favourite game of the year at the end. I’ll have plenty more to say about Yakuza Kiwami 2 than what’s here, but keeping to the 2-3 paragraphs trend for this article seems to suit me well.

Continue reading “Some Games I Liked From 2018’s Second Half”

A big giant letter F

Figures… the day I end the hiatus and aspire to push on with my video game related writing and journalism is the day that the video game journalism world loses a hugely influential and important figure.

I have no personal story here. I’ve never met or chatted with Total Biscuit, though it was always kind of a dream of mine to be able to join that “inner circle” of sorts and show up on the Co-optional podcast or play on a stream with them… something like that. I’m not one of those that will be mourning the loss of a dear friend and family member. All the same, I’ll still be mourning.

This guy is immensely important to the work that so many people do in the video game writing and content scenes. He’s one of the key figures that people can look to on as having proved the viability of being a “content creator”. Whether that’s on podcasts, streams, YouTube videos, shoutcasting… he’s had a hand in all of it, and so many who now partake in this do so because of the ground work he laid down.

He had standards that he was rarely if ever willing to compromise in, both in his own work and in the video games that he looked over and reported on. At the same time, he was fair in covering the strengths and weaknesses of what he played, being honest about his feelings and experiences on them. More than that, he often covered indie games or lesser known titles that may have never gotten any kind of coverage or attention had he not.

It’s honestly crazy to look back and see how much has been influenced by his work. Hell, I first encountered him and Jesse Cox alike when they were covering the World of Warcraft: Cataclysm beta stuff. That would have been in 2010. Even by that point he was decently well known and established through WoW Radio stuff.

Throughout all of these years, the biggest lesson and message that Total Biscuit pushed to aspiring content creators was a simple one: be consistent. Set a schedule and keep up with it. Put your content out without fail, as much as you can, and stick with it. It’s a simple lesson, but an extremely important one… and one that the last update shows is one I sometimes struggle to take to heart, personally.

And it’s not just the writing and content creation part that TB is influential with, too. It’s been no secret that he’s been fighting a losing battle with cancer for years now, yet he never made it seem like a losing battle. The first diagnosis was terminal, but he chose to keep on fighting anyway like a goddamn rockstar. From the very outset he was determined to beat the odds, and his longevity means he very much did.

There’s been interviews and discussions that have talked about his battle with cancer that have honestly, legitimately saved lives through the information offered. All throughout, he’s been adamant on the notion of “It is the enemy, so I must fight it.” And so he did. He kept on with his content wherever possible, as unflinchingly as possible, and even in the final months when it was clear that he was in pain and suffering… still he pushed on. That’s probably why the news that he was finally retiring earlier this month, and this morning’s announcement that his fight was finally over really hit home.

You never knew me, John, but I — and many others — knew you. And we’ll carry on your work and legacy as best as we can. May you rest in peace.

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Is there anybody… out there?

Yes, I’m still alive. Sadly the blog has not been, but I’m hoping to correct this in the coming days. Details below the cut, but to keep it brief…

tl;dr: Remaining Delfies entries to be released at once in abridged form ASAP, scheduled articles going away, various labelled articles becoming less important. Attempting at least a post once a week on no particular schedule or theme, as if this was a blog or something strange like that.

Continue reading “Is there anybody… out there?”

The Delfies 2017: Introduction and Quick Links

Welcome to the Delfies Awards of 2017!

Starting with the number 10 position and counting down one per day, I shall be going over what I considered my favourite games of 2017. This post shall be kept at the top of the blog for the duration and will be updated with each new entry for quick links. Be sure to check them out!

#10: View
#9: View
#8: View
#7: ASAP
#6: ASAP

(All dates will usually be met around 11pm AEST, if not as soon as I can readily have them available)

While each post will be fairly detailed about what the games are and why I like them so much, I also want to go over my criteria for what qualifies for selection. There’s also a pretty big disclaimer in there that I shall direct you to if, for any reason, you want to protest my choices or believe something should be higher, lower, or absent. That said, I still welcome all discussions on the matter so feel free to message me and we can chat about it. More after the cut!

Continue reading “The Delfies 2017: Introduction and Quick Links”

Delfeir vs. 2018

Been a little while, hasn’t it? So much so that the calendar ticked over yet again, faster than ever. Well, now seems as good as any to get this project back on track and give an update.

First things first: If you’re reading this, thank you immensely for your time, interest, patience and dialogue. I’m not exactly standing on a large podium and reaching a significant crowd, and my name doesn’t exactly carry any weight online, so consider yourselves the few and the proud. All that said, it seriously means a lot that people take time out of their day to read what I have to say and take that discussion up with me or to other places. Might be fairly typical to thank everyone for it, but it is what it is, so thank you guys very much.

With that said, what’s been happening with the blog? Well, I was only planning to miss one Backlog Report largely due to not actually playing anything of note that week. It was fairly quiet and was filled pretty much only with Heroes of the Storm or games that I was going to be reviewing in full soon after. Unfortunately, that continued into the next week as I stopped playing interesting games so much as sticking to comfort picks during the busy end of year period. Since everyone was occupied with wrapping up their year, I just turned that into a break from which I am now returning.

I was also playing games for the sake of research for future Right Clicks, many of which I didn’t dive into that heavily individually but instead was looking at the genre or platform as a whole. The research phase is now mostly done so I’ll hopefully be coming out with a couple of articles on those topics soon, but as usual with Right Click, I don’t have a solid timeframe for you and will release it when it’s ready.

The Backlog Battle Reports, on the other hand, will be resuming their usual spot on Mondays (give or take a few hours that I might stealthily backdate) starting on the 8th. They’ll be functioning much as they always have and will give snippets and thoughts/discussions I have on the stuff I’ve been currently playing. Nothing new or groundbreaking there, but it’s a fun little exercise that I want to keep maintaining, so there we have it.

For other projects, I’m still writing up my own little “Top 10 Games of 2017” to be released over the coming days. I don’t have a specific day that those will start, but each entry will be a full sized article of its own for each game, so there’s a fair bit to talk about and write for it. Given my tendency to overshoot the mark, I’m writing up a buffer of a couple of entries ahead of time so that I can keep them posting consistently once I begin. We’ll see how that pans out, and I’m aiming for the first to be up sometime in the next week.

That will be 11 articles, with the last being a list of honourable mentions, and there’ll be a mini-update like this one accompanying it to list my personal rules and criteria on what makes a game qualify. I was also considering including a worst of list, buuut… with all the outrage and frustration that a lot are feeling at the games industry as a whole after 2017, I strongly believe it’s better to look at the positive and give due credit and attention to where it’s deserved. The failures and mistakes can rot out of the limelight: we’re here to talk about stuff worthy of being talked about.

Lastly, reviews. I’m still going to be writing and linking to the reviews I do for Switch Indie Reviews as always, and my work for them continues. I like the group there and what they do, so I’m going to be doing my utmost to see that site continue to grow and expand.

Now, there was a second website I was going to be writing for, but during the busy December months I had to look at my workload, health, and other factors and determined that trying to maintain all of those was probably too much for me right now. As such, I quietly withdrew from that project for now, so SIR and this blog are the only places I’m writing for currently. Once I feel I’m able, you can be sure I’ll be looking for new prospects, if not just expanding this site further; expect to see a review or two here for non-Switch consoles, just because.

I think that covers everything from the writing perspective, so that should about do it for this update. Once again, thank you everyone reading this. 2017 was, for all its faults and flaws, quite possibly the best year I’ve personally had in quite some time. Lots of positive improvements and changes were made and I’m doing a lot better than I have been in a while, and all of that was furthered by being able to write about some truly awesome video game experiences. Here’s to hoping 2018 sees the same kind of positive trend and good games.

See you soon for more!