Showing posts with label Blogging. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Blogging. Show all posts

Monday, June 03, 2024

May 2024 In Review

May has come and gone.  Here is a look back (late delivery due to vacation).

The Blog

 I still owe a larger post about my findings with "spam" abuse of my GA4 (Google Analytics) tags that made me realize most of my traffic tracked to my blog was not real.  With that said let me present two numbers for blog traffic in May.

 First; the Blogger provided number (last 30 days graph / May count over the top)

 Second; my much filtered Google Analytics number.

 Those pictures tell two very different stories.  16k+ visits according to Blogger but only 875 per Google Analytics after I apply traffic source filters to get rid of spammers abusing GA4 tags.

 So May saw between 875 and 16,000+ visits to the blog. I'll pretend the latter is correct because... reasons.

 In other metrics:

  • Posts:
    • Target: 15 (at least one per week day; except vacation)
    • Posted:17
    • Difference: +2
      • Woohoo!  Back on track this Month
  •  Search Trends
    • "best battlefield game", "best battlefield", "best battlefield games" blew up this month directing folks to my post: Best Battlefield!?
    • New World dominates the rest of the search queries across Bing and Google.  This month the champ was "new world roadmap 2024" which makes sense as May was the original timeframe for the 2024 roadmap to be provided (that has now been pushed to June 7th for the big news)

What I Played

 New World continues as my main game.  I spent a lot of time in 3v3 arenas (100+ wins this season).  With vacation I won't be able to make top 10 though on the leaderboard but hoping my main playing partner makes it in (he has a shot at #1).

 I also spent some time in Jedi: Fallen Order.  I really like the visuals and Star Wars story of the game, but the "on rails" corridor levels totally ruin the feeling.  That is why I am looking forward to Star Wars: Outlaws to give me an open world experience.

 Fallout fever died off as I gave up Fallout 3 (the game is too dated at this point for my tastes) and I didn't bother to grab Fallout 4/76/NV/whatever.

 I was accepted to the Combat Champions playtest but didn't get a chance to play due to vacation.

Years Ago

1 Year Ago

 In May 2023 we got the first news of Amazon Game Studios (developers of my beloved New World) were starting working on a Lord of the Rings MMO.  In kind we began digging New World's grave.

5 Years Ago

 May 2019 I was looking at Magic the Gathering and reminiscing about the guild I helped run for a while: Casualties of War!

10 Years Ago

 In May of 2014 I was running around Guild Wars 2 and decided to document where traits could be obtained.  How much that game has changed!

15 Years Ago

  May of 2009 was a busy month on the blog and in retrospect some important things happened.

 20 19 Years Ago

 Technically I have 20 named years on my sidebar, but mathematically 2005 is only 19 years ago.

 In May of 2005 I started a blog so I had that going for me :)

Wednesday, May 01, 2024

April 2024 In Review

 Taking some inspiration from The Ancient Gaming Noob (TAGN for short) I wanted to start up month-in-review posts.

An AI generated image from prompt an image to represent a blog post summarizing the month of april
Microsoft Designer / prompt "an image to represent a blog post summarizing the month of april"

The Blog

 I will likely write a bigger post about this but I had a "surprise" after researching recent random traffic spikes.  The findings are best explained in this summary which guided me through blocking spammers that are abusing Google Analytics GA4 tags.  Needless to say my bubble was deflated as 90% of the traffic to my blog has just been spam and not real traffic (which explains why I see so few comments).  So where I was thinking I had 1,000 visits a day I really just have 100 (and that may still be high).  

 Anyone using Google Analytics should read that article and take the actions to block the spammers and build reports to review your historical traffic without that traffic counted.  I did parts of this through April so won't have a full picture quite yet and will share more on traffic stats in future monthly updates.

 In other metrics:

  • Posts:
    • Target: 22 (at least one per week day)
    • Posted: 16
    • Difference: -6
      • Why the miss?  Work.  It's been busy so spare time has been gaming instead of blogging.  Fortunately clearing up here for May to get back on track.
  •  Search Trends
    • "new world ultimate trophy" is the main search driver to the blog and then hundreds of other New World search terms after that (daily checklist, season 5 artifacts, upgrade named gear - just to name a few)
    • "call of the wild the angler multiplayer" is the big non-New World driver anytime that game seems to have a hiccup with this multiplayer features.

What I Played

 New World continues to dominate my time even though there isn't much new to do in the game.  My main focus has been on 3v3 arenas and the Springtide Bloom event.  The spring event, while bugged, was a good "do it and chill".  The bug let you get rewards faster so I was able to get all skins and rewards from the event with less effort than expected.   For 3v3 arenas I peaked into the top 10 for wins briefly for Season 5 and am back to 12th.  My main playing partner hit #1 though so that was cool to see; though both of us lack the time to stay on the top for the full season.  We'll still give it a go though.

 Fallout fever caught me as it has so many others and I gave Fallout 3 a couple hours of attention, but will admit it fell off almost immediately in favor of New World.

 I also got time with the Pax Dei Wilderness Alpha and spent several hours there.  The game has a good bit to improve but there is a little glimpse of promise of game there.

Years Ago

 One thing I wanted to steal from TAGNs is his look back over the last twenty years (we're getting old!).  My look back will mostly be from my blog history but a real life event may pop in here or there.

1 Year Ago

 April 2023 brought us Season 1 in New World and Rabbits Revenge (which due to patch delays we did NOT get in 2024).

5 Years Ago

 April 2019 caught me in my drought of blogging so had no posts, but my youngest son was also just turning 3 months old at the time so I was plenty busy.

10 Years Ago

 April of 2014 was all about the MEGASERVERS coming to Guild Wars 2.  Ten years later and we still have MMOs thinking they can launch with single servers.  How I wish New World had a megaserver model!

15 Years Ago

  April of 2009 I was looking at the news about A Dance With Dragons being delayed and fifteen years later, while we did get Dance, we have NOT gotten the next book in the series!  But GRRM is not my bitch so I'll leave it at that (if you get this comment you get it).

 20 19 Years Ago

 Technically I have 20 named years on my sidebar, but mathematically 2005 is only 19 years ago.  And April of 2005 I was not yet blogging, but that was all about to change as I started in May 2005!  Which means I was thinking about it in April!

Tuesday, March 05, 2024

Spike in blog traffic!

 Big spike in blog traffic this morning!  Not sure why these 3 posts or why analytics says the biggest spike in visitors is from Poland but I'm open to be entertained to see where this goes (or get some sort of explanation it's not real like Google has done in the past).

A screenshot showing an increase in blog traffic on heartlessgamer blog.

Thursday, February 29, 2024

The hypocrisy of posting on a blog in 2024

 Create a post on X (or whatever social media of choice) and share it on a site like a video game's forums and it's cool.  But create content on your own blog you've run for 19+ years to share and you are just a bottom sucker of the Internet.  Just blogging things.

Tuesday, February 06, 2024

So... about the ad spam on the blog

ads on blog
Step 3: Profit?

 I have not had a payout from Google Adsense since 2014.  That is because I stopped running ads on the blog all those years ago.  Out of curiosity after hearing about what others were making with similar traffic I wanted to test the waters again.  Here are the results from a month-ish of auto ads!

 First, I want to apologize to any visitors that felt the ads were over the top.  I did opt to use Google's "auto ads" that, to be honest, pukes ads all over the page.  I did verify with my own ad blockers that this was not skirting common ad blocks so if you block ads you were seeing the nice clean site that existed before.  If you didn't block ads... well... sorry.

 For context of how much traffic the blog sees; the blog enjoys about 600-1000 visitors a day.  New posts usually hit anywhere from 50 to 100 views in the first day.  My top performing search areas from Google and Bing are around the game New World.  For the month (and a couple days) the auto ads were on we hit 30,000 visits.  A normal month of traffic.

 Before we get to the "how much did I earn" let's look at some things I learned

  • Auto ads ruins page experience.  It causes longer loading times and increased bounce rate (i.e. visitors exiting the site as soon as it opens).

    • graph

  • It may have reduced visits to new posts.  I can't prove this conclusively but new posts FEEL LIKE they had fewer visits their first day than I am used to.
  • Even with ads spamming the page my visitors don't click on them.  There were only a few clicks over the entire month across hundreds of thousands of ad impressions.

 So the real question: how much did I make?  The answer: $1.  I rounded down because does it really matter it was $1.47 and not just $1?  For the level of invasion the ads had it was simply not worth it.  I will also not see that dollar anytime soon because the minimum payout is $100.

 What's next?  I am actually going to keep ads on but use static placement in areas that are not obtrusive.  I will re-evaluate after a month.

Thursday, January 04, 2024

Some AI Blog Banners!

 Playing around with Bing's AI generated images; prompt "heartlessgamer blog banner". Results below.  What do you think?

heartlessgamer AI banner

heartlessgamer AI banner

heartlessgamer AI banner

heartlessgamer AI banner

Monday, January 01, 2024

2024 Blogging Stuff

 I posted in early 2023 that I wanted to avoid the normal "year in review" and "prediction" posts and instead covered a few things I wanted to get done in blogging during the year.  Before I set goals for 2024 let's look back at the 2023 objectives:

  • 5 posts per week
  • Share more "this was my experience in a game" posts
  • Do some video content

 Other than the video content I hit each of these objectives.  I hit more than 5 posts per week (5.5 per week average) and I had plenty of simpler posts just sharing a screenshot or an accomplishment from in game (mostly New World because... well... that is mostly what I played this year). 

2024 goals
 I do still want to do video content so we'll add that as the first item for 2024: do some video content.  I have an outline of how I'd want the videos to flow and a tagline of: "To the point. No filler. Gameplay footage." with an asterisk of *Not a pro gamer.  We'll see if I can get there this year!

 I am going to stick with the 5 posts a week for 2024.  This works well for me.

 As far as content this year?  I want to continue to share my gaming adventures, but I also want to spend some more time on other game bloggers blogs and using their posts and prompts for my own posts.  I really enjoyed Blaugust 2023 and look forward to it in August 2024, but I don't need a special event to journey out more into the blog-o-sphere.

 Lastly I want to see if I can drive some comments on the blog.  10+ years ago I used to enjoy hundreds of comments per month and then I started posting sparsely and even though I post regularly again the comments have not followed.  I have some ideas here; more to come.

 Stretch goal: I am debating if I want to try and do some monetization of the site.  I do the odd Amazon affiliate link here and there but maybe a sidebar ad.  I don't like ads but I also want to offset the cost of domain registration.  Also I have seen folks with far less traffic than this blog enjoys earn a decent amount of ad revenue.

Sunday, November 12, 2023

If Heartless was an advertisement!

 A little fun from Tipa over on where she uses some AI to generate fake advertisements for a few of the bloggers out there.  Thanks Tipa (check her blog out at Chasing Dings)!


Friday, September 01, 2023

Blaugust 2023 Blaugchievements

Blaugust 2023 has come and gone.  It is time to check my blaugchievements!


Reading the Manual – By the time you have arrived at this page, you have probably already completed this blaugchievement. Essentially this is here to instill the importance of actually reading the introduction to Blaugust post.

- Complete!

Joining the Cause – This one is gained by filling out the sign-up form and choosing to participate in this year’s Blaugust event. If for some reason you cannot fill out the form, please contact me and I will collect your information to register you directly.

- Complete!

Recruit a Friend – Convince another blogger to participate in this year’s Blaugust event. This could be a brand new blogger but also could just be convincing another blogger out there to participate. Again much of the focus on Blaugust is to stir up activity in the community and get bloggers active again.

- Failed.  I have no friends.

Spreading the Madness – This one is gained by promoting the Blaugust event either on your own blog or through any of your favorite social media channels. Again we are trying to get more bloggers active to revive this art form.

- Complete!  All of my blog posts tagged for Blaugust 2023 and you can check my Mastodon, Twitter, and Threads for Blaugust mentions.

Friend of Wumpus
– This one is gained by signing up for the official Blaugust Discord. While this Discord was created for this event, it stays surprisingly active all year round and becomes a locus of our community.

- Complete!

Sharing is Caring – This one is gained through posting your content in the “Share-Your-Content” channel on the Blaugust Discord. It is good to get in the habit of doing this because often times topics posted end up spurring additional discussion.

- Complete!

Forum of Friends – This one is gained through participating in a discussion in the “Post-Discussion” channel on the Blaugust Discord. Often times this is where active discussion happens about posts and serves as a real-time extended comments section.

- Complete

The Pet Tax – This one is gained through posting a picture of an animal friend in the “Stuff-and-Things” channel on the Blaugust Discord or by creating a content post devoted to that animal. This is preferably your pet, but if you do not have any pets then posting any cute animals will suffice. This is quite possibly the most important achievement.

- Does it count if I did it today (9/1)? Complete!

Friend Like Me – This one is gained through answering a question or helping out another blogger on the Blaugust Discord. We have a number of channels like “Blogging-Help” or “Writing-Prompts” designed to help folks out. Any sort of helpful interaction is appreciated and rewarded with a toast.

- Complete!  I suggested writing prompts such as the #MondayBlogs hashtag, my Steam backlog posts, and GamesMadeMe posts.

Shared Thoughts – This one is gained by leaving a comment on another participating Blaugust blog. While a lot of focus is made on Discord, it is always a good idea to leave a comment directly on a blog since there will be folks who are not already active in this community.

- Complete! I visited several blogs this past month and left comments. I even keep going back to a few!  Some folks even commented on my blog!

Federation of Bloggers – Create a social media account on any of the Fediverse platforms (Mastodon, Pleroma, Calckey, Misskey, etc) and follow the official Blaugust Mastodon account. This account lives on Gamepad.Club which coincidentally is a lovely Mastodon Server if you don’t have one already in mind. During the event, the Blaugust account will be boosting posts made with the #Blaugust2023 hashtag.

- Complete!  I moved over to's Mastodon.

Getting Inspired – Often times reading a blog post will inspire us to create our own post connected to the same concept. There are times that I have things to say that are far too long to cram into a comments section. This blaugchievement is gained by writing a blog post that has been inspired by another blog post from a Blaugust participant.

- Complete!  I visited multiple bloggers in the first week and featured their content and my thoughts about it on this blog. 

Pickup Group – This one is gained by playing a game or joining in an external event with other Blaugust participants. We have the “Gaming-Together” channel and sometimes groups come out of that, and there was some discussion about someone hosting a one-shot pen and paper game. The whole goal here is to get you mingling with other members and building permanent bonds.

- Failed! I don't have friends.  I didn't play with others.

Hot Topics – Write at least one blog post based on the Blaugust Prompt List. Some years ago we had this whole “topic web ring” sort of thing that was a giant mess. However it did produce a pretty solid list of topical prompts, and my hope is that someone participating in this event will find them useful.

- Complete! I hit multiple prompts such as revisiting my origin story for blogging.

Welcome Wagon – This one is gained by writing a blog post based on the first week’s theme of welcoming folks to Blaugust. Hint, this may also count as the “Spreading the Madness” achievement. The idea is to get some activity in those early days of Blaugust to potentially expand our members and have folks join mid-event.

- Complete! On the first day of blogger... new bloggers!

Introduce Yourself – This one is gained by writing a blog post based on the second week’s theme of introducing yourself to the community. If you are a veteran, chances are you have already written more than one introductory post, so this can also be focused on just telling people about something in your life or some accomplishment. The exchange of information is key to creating those strong long-term bonds, and as such this serves its purpose.

- Complete! This was a fun one: first I revisited my first blog post ever and second I wrote one of my longest posts ever about games that made me the gamer I am today.

Creative Appreciation – This one is gained by writing a blog post based on the third week’s theme of creative appreciation. This has morphed over the year and began its life as a completely different initiate called “Developer Appreciation Week”. Now the goal is to focus more generically on those who create things that you appreciate. It could be an artist, writer, game developer, streamer, YouTuber, podcaster, or another blogger. The goal is to share something you love and talk about what makes you love it… and maybe introduce new people to this thing you care about.

- Complete! I featured my favorite New World creators , some MMO creators, and thanked NEFFEX for their copyright free music. 

Staying Motivated – This one is gained by writing a blog post based on the fourth week’s theme of staying motivated. The goal here is to share your own experiences in how you have managed to stay motivated during this challenge. The struggle with blogging is doing so in a consistent manner because it is all too easy to fall off the face of the earth never to be heard from again.

- Complete! My favorite post was how I deal with temptations to want to play too many games!

Lessons Learned – This one is gained by writing a blog post based on the fifth week’s theme of lessons learned. Often times when you go through an event like Blaugust, you learn something about yourself in the process. The goal here is to share that information with others so that our experiences that benefit those who come after us.

- Complete! Multiple posts but my favorite was about my Steam backlog.  

Going Platinum – What would a series of achievements be if there was not a “Platinum Trophy”. This one is gained by completing all of the achievements above during Blaugust.

/cry... so close

Monday, August 28, 2023

Lessons Learned: Steam Backlog Is What It Is

 This post is part of my running series: My Steam Backlog (see all MySteamBacklog tagged posts).  This post is ALSO a part of Blaugust 2023's lessons learned week. Why? Because my Steam backlog is what it is.

 I had set the year off to tackle as much of my Steam backlog as I could.  It was part reflecting on games that I played in the past and part playing games I never played (or didn't play enough to form an opinion).  The reflecting has been easier than the playing so I thought for Blaugust's "stay motivated" week I'd hit some of the "need to play" list.

 I stuck to my alphabetical approach and I'm still in the Bs which meant I hit some doozies.  First was The Binding of Isaac which just killed my momentum as I didn't really want to play it and just kept putting it off.  I should have skipped it but felt I needed to be fair to the objective of hitting the full backlog.  Putting this one off meant I put the rest off and thus didn't get anywhere and thus had to shift gears for "staying motivated" week for Blaugust.

 Lesson Learned: If a game in my Steam backlog is not interesting then don't play it.  Life is short; don't play crappy games.

 Going forward I will be more strategic in the games I play from the backlog. This doesn't mean I won't touch on all games, but some will just be commentary like I've done for games like the Bioshock series.

 I also picked up on a tool called Steam Completionist from a post on Aywren's blog so I am going to check that out to see how it can help me better track my backlog.



Tuesday, August 08, 2023

GamesMadeMe: Blogging About Games

 GamesMadeMe is a series of posts that cover gaming-related topics that have shaped who I am as a gamer today.  I've covered IDOCs in Ultima Online, THAC0 from D&D, and InQuest Gamer Magazine.  It feels like something obvious is missing though.  In the spirit of "Introduce Yourself Week" for Blaugust 2023 it only makes sense to close the gap on the obvious: blogging about games!

 In my "So it begins... again!" post yesterday I went back to where blogging started for me 18+ years ago, but I didn't actually talk about what inspired me to start.  First you have to understand where my gamer tag, heartlessgamer, originates from.  I am sure I've posted other recallings of this so bear with me if details have varied.

 My gamer tag comes from the game Kingdom Hearts and the "heartless" enemy featured in the game (little shadow dudes).  Playing Kingdom Hearts happened to coincide with some other key events that resulted in me needing to pick a new online handle.  Prior to these events I was using handles related to character names I had come up with for Star Wars role playing (Hehl Omni and Torno Shren).

 I was a frequent poster on the Vault network forums (think they are owned by IGN now) back in the day and for some reason the forums were changing and we all had to pick new names to go by.  I ended up going with "heartless_" because I was really digging Kingdom Hearts at that moment and time.  The underscore was required and then it was natural to just bridge that to "heartless_gamer".  Eventually that just became heartlessgamer after I nabbed the domain name.

 It is also those very forums that drove me to blogging.  I forget exactly what was transpiring at the time with the forums but there were forums shutting down and posts were going to be taken down forever.  It occurred to me: I don't have any control over this enormous amount of content I am creating on these forums... I should probably start a blog!  That'll show em!

 Eighteen years later and here we still are (I say we as though anyone actually comments on posts anymore).  There were several lean years in my blogging history as I became a father and realized there is more to life than punching the post button (and I needed spare time to play games of course; not worry about blog posts).

 The draught of blog posts ended in Sept 2022 when I said Let's do this - post a day! when I returned to daily blogging.  To be truthful while I had a gap in blogging I didn't slow down on finding platforms like Reddit to continue giving away my thoughts and ideas for free.  If you cant tell; I have deep desire to TALK ABOUT GAMES!

 Talking about games is directly tied to my enjoyment of games. My current jam is New World and I have tons of posts about the game here, on Reddit, in the old New World forums, in Discord, and other places.  Regardless of the scatter shot of places I put stuff I always come back to this blog.  Blogging is like breathing at this point and is as much a part of my gaming experience as anything else.

 In summary: I was writing a lot of posts about games on forums, the forums were going to go away, so I decided why not take control of my own thoughts and put them all on a blog. I have to talk about games. Blogging about games made me the gamer I am today!


Monday, August 07, 2023

So it begins... again!

 It's the second week of Blaugust 2023 so we are moving onto "Introduce Yourself Week".  To kick things off let's take a look back at my first post on this blog: So it begins...

The date: Sunday, May 29, 2005 (18 years ago!)
The topic: MMORPGs

 The opening paragraph sticks with me to this day and I consider it some of the best text I've ever assembled.

 This blog has officially started. It has been a process of thought pulling at my mind for a while. I play these games we call MMORPGs, but I don't even know if "play" is the correct word to describe it anymore. I live and breath these games. They are more than an escape from my mediocre life. Fun is no longer the driving factor. Social interaction with like minded nerds and geeks; people whom live through their in game characters as though it was version 2.0 of themselves.

 The words are as true today as they were back then.  The major change for me, to be honest, is that I've grown up in the 18 years since I started this blog.  I was single with way more time than I knew what to do with back then.  Now I have a family (my oldest is starting high school this week!!!!).  Then or now though I love my MMORPGs!

 I've also chilled out a bit from those early days.  As noted in my first blog post there was a lot of energy devoted to "the game of choice! Room for debate among the flooded market of MMORPGs and the denizens that inhabit them. From baseless flame fests on the far reaches of the most bizarre gaming message boards; to developer's beloved Customer Feedback Forms." While I still feel passionately for or against certain games the idea of a "flame fest" is no longer appealing.  I am much more likely these days to just "let it go" or be positive in support of games others enjoy that I do not (gasp!).

 Ironically I am just not as heartless as I once was.  Double irony that my name was never really meant to be about being heartless; I was really just into Kingdom Hearts at the time I had to change from my old nickname.  In Kingdom Hearts the bad guys are referred to as "heartless" and they looked cool so I went with it.

 And so it begins... again... and now you know a little more about who I was and who I am now :)

Thursday, August 03, 2023

Perilous MMO Tropes

contains moderate peril
 Roger Edwards (aka Mr Peril) of Contains Moderate Peril has been posting about MMO tropes.  For the third day of Blaugust I sat down and read a few of these trope posts and I have some thoughts.

The posts:

 First; these are all great bathroom reads. Second; Roger is an amazing blogger.  Platitudes out of the way let's get to the tropes.

“The MMO genre is rife with its own set of tropes; recurring themes and motifs that have become established and ubiquitous. All of which are ideal material for a hastily produced, lazily conceived, recurring blog post”.


  If there is an MMO trope that encapsulates the history of MMOs it is certainly death mechanics.  In Roger's post he covers the history of death in MMORPGs: from the "corpse runs" of early games like Everquest to the modern "Death is now treated as a minor penalty that temporarily inconveniences you." as Roger puts it.

 In my older age (40+) I tend to lean towards the modern inconvenience approach and I think it is appropriate for today's market.  Every year it seems like a new MMO project gets started talking about the "good ole' days" of corpse runs and death penalties.  None of those MMOs end up going anywhere.

 Death, as outlined by Roger, is a "means by which to teach the player that they’re doing something wrong and that they need to rethink their strategy."  Slapping a penalty on top of that creates friction and friction is what frustrates players.  Frustrated players don't stick around to play a game because there is a dozen other games on the market that will better respect their time. 

 Losing is enough of a penalty for most players.  Games would be wise to let us take our lump and get on playing again.

Running All the Way

 Running is an MMO trope and like Death it has a history with MMOs.  Large worlds and long travel times were a feature in the early days.  Now long travel times are just an inconvenience.  Roger makes a solid point when looking at single player games.

 "Single player games seem to handle travel differently and certainly have some advantages. I envy the fact that a game like Grand Theft Auto V or Red Dead Redemption 2 provide the players with access to public transport."

 The answer for MMOs doesn't always have to be to add mounts and "public transport" is a great concept.  Some games do it; there were flight paths in World of Warcraft that are the equivalent of Roger's Red Dead Redemption 2 reference "riding the train between towns in RDR2 as it is very restful and highlights for a few minutes the detail of the open world."

  Public transport or player-controlled mounts (which are really just faster travel) the key is the same as death: don't add friction. Friction will piss gamers off and they will walk (ha!) from the game.  There are too many great games on the market to be bored to death traveling in a game. 

"Kill Ten Rats" and Fetch Quests

 I almost spit out my coffee when I read this:

"The MMORPG genre is a curious subset of video games. Not only is it predicated on violence against the individual, institutions and “others”, as so many video games are but also species-specific genocide and general mass extinction of fauna and flora."

 There is no truer statement to encapsulate what modern MMORPGs expect of their players.  Most games are designed around the concept of wiping out entire generations of enemies and then doing it all over again.  And again. And again. And again.  And again. And... you get the idea: grind!

 Some may not know this but Ultima Online launched originally with a model where "mobs" were limited and once killed they didn't just respawn.  If a deer was killed and harvest that was it.  In addition there was a predator/prey system; kill a rabbit and a wolf goes hungry.  Kill the wolf and rabbits could take over the world.

 As you may expect it didn't last long.  Player's killed everything in sight and the system fell apart to be replaced by the never-ending respawn system that is the norm.

 In regards to "kill ten rats" I do have a personal preference.  I would like to see game focus more on smaller but more difficult encounters.  Leave the "kill waves of enemies in a single blow" to the Path of Exile's of the world.  Move away from grinding endless respawns of the same creature.  Instead make me work to defeat one enemy and figure out a way to still reward me for trying even if I die.

Tuesday, August 01, 2023

On the first day of Blaugust... new bloggers!

 On the first day of Blaugust my true love gave to me... a brand new blogger!  Part of Blaugust is to encourage other's to get into blogging.  So today I rolled the dice and scrolled down the Blaugust "newbie" list to find a participant just getting their feet wet.

 That brought me to BogusMeatFactory and their blog The Video Game Obscura. You can read their introduction blog post here.  And what do we have here...

So what does an overly optimistic enthusiast that still plays video games breaching forty years old care about?

 Yes! Another 40 something game blogger!  Welcome to the freaking club BogusMeatFactory.

Monday, July 31, 2023

Updated Banner



Dropped Call of the Wild:the Angler and added Way of the Hunter to reflect current play habits.

Join me for Blaugust (please?)!

recruit a friend

 I am a completionist.  I must. get. all. the. things.  This includes Blaugust achievements and I can get all of them done except I need another blogger to join me in this journey!  Drop a comment if you've signed up (sign up here) because of my begging post.

Recruit a Friend – Convince another blogger to participate in this year’s Blaugust event. This could be a brand new blogger but also could just be convincing another blogger out there to participate. Again much of the focus on Blaugust is to stir up activity in the community and get bloggers active again.

Sunday, July 30, 2023

My Blaugust 2023 plan


blaugust schedule
 As I mentioned yesterday Blaugust is almost here!  The schedule is posted in the image above and here is what I am looking to feature each week (you can read more on the intention of the categories here).

Welcome to Blaugust Week (August 1st – August 5th)

  • I will do some rounds on other bloggers participating and kicking off the event so expect some linking out to other blogs and some heartless commentary to go with them

Introduce Yourself Week (August 6th – August 12th)

  • We'll revisit my first blog post ever
  • Expect some more "Games Made Me" posts

Creator Appreciation Week (August 13th – August 19th)

  • I am going to dip into some adjacent-to-gaming creator spaces to inspire some posts this week
  • I will probably feature some New World content creators

Staying Motivated Week (August 20th – August 26th)

Lessons Learned Week (August 27th – August 31st)

  • A chance to reflect on Blaugust 2023

Saturday, July 29, 2023

Blaugust 2023 is almost here!

 Excited to announce I'll be participating in Blaugust 2023!  I am looking forward to some outside driven topics to blog about!

What is Blaugust?

Blaugust is a month-long event that takes place in August each year that focused on blogging and other serialized content. The goal is to stoke the fires of creativity and allow bloggers and other content creators to mingle in a shared community while pushing each other to post more regularly. For years blogging has been dwindling, and in part, Blaugust was my attempt and reversing that course by compiling a bunch of veteran bloggers in one place and making it super easy to ask questions and get answers. The idea is that this festival of blogging can help reignite dwindling fires for the next year and give folks a sense of kinship as a result. Each year has taken slightly different forms and shifted to include more than just blogs, but the core mission is always the same. In this year of corporate internet staples seeming a little less sturdy, it is all the more important that each of us carve our own homes that we can call our own… that gives us a sense of permanence. No matter what happens on whatever platforms I am on… my blog remains.

Saturday, February 18, 2023

Saturday Blogging Thoughts

 Ever since I returned to daily blogging; especially when I changed the blog template and removed DISQUS for comments the traffic to this site has tanked.  On top of that Google Search Console is barfing all over the site's pages and no longer indexing them.  I don't run this site for the page views, the SEO, or to monetize (at most I do Amazon referral links so I can get more crap on Amazon I don't really need).

 That had me looking at what Blogger offers these days... and... that is nothing.  Seems like Google is just letting Blogger coast.  So off to Reddit's blogging subreddit to ask if I am crazy and to see what else is out there.

 That resulted in some suggestions I'll be evaluating

  • Substack
  • Publii (static site)
  • Wordpress
  • and some more in the thread

If you have a thought toss it in the comments. 

Reddit thread embedded below: