What we're playing

by: Randy -
More On: What we're playing

University of Hawaii students are making a 1:1 recreation of their stadium in Minecraft so they can still have some kind of graduation ceremony. Here's a vote for more video games that are social platforms first and games second. And the U.K.'s National Health Service are being given free video games as a thank you for their service.

So, what are you playing?

Russell Archey
The past couple of weeks Destiny 2 has been putting on their version of the Olympics called the Guardian Games...and by Olympics I mean basically doing a crap-ton of bounties because that's what the past two seasons have been in a nutshell. I fell way behind as I've only been playing sparsely here and there so this weekend will be playing catchup as this is the last week for the games. Any spare time beyond that where I'm not streaming will probably be spent working on Yu-gi-oh! Legacy of the Duelist: Link Evolution for a video series I'm working on over on YouTube. I'm currently up to the final duel in the Duelist Kingdom story arc from the first season and I'm partly excited for it and partly not because I've seen the anime and I know what Pegasus has in his deck besides his Toon monsters.

Eric Hauter
I've entered into one of those indecisive periods, where I am dabbling with a number of games, but can't decide on one to lock onto.

I'm still playing Far Cry Primal, and enjoying it to an extent. But the more I play, the more its charms are starting to wear thin. I continuously run into bugs where I accept a mission, but the mission goal never appears on my map. I know that many people enjoy playing open world games with now minimap, but I am 100% minimap reliant. Without knowing where to go in one of Ubi's giant worlds, I feel lost and aimless. I need structure, man. 

I've also recently started dabbling with two new additions on Stadia. PUBG is surprisingly engaging. Though it was one of the first battle royale games, its hooks are still pretty strong. I've gotten really good at getting to number two, but the chicken dinner still eludes me. Some ninja in a Chewbacca costume is always laying in wait to take me out with a headshot. I've also started digging into Octopath Traveler. After playing two big-name Square-Enix remakes back to back, it feels amazingly refreshing to dig into a game with mechanics that date back to my early days as a gamer. Octopath is beautiful and charming, and being weary of JRPGS at the moment, it feels like just the elixir I need to restore my faith in my favorite genre. 

Randy Kalista
The Assassin's Creed Valhalla reveal got me hyped on some ol' Viking stuff. Not sure if I want to try out Assassin's Creed Syndicate to see what 1,000 years post-Viking-invasion London looks like; or take it out of that series and see if God of War will give me the Viking fix I'm looking for; or take it out of the genre altogether and replay the Banner Saga, aka Viking Oregon Trail. I'm wildly confused why Google doesn't fit Skyrim into any search of Viking-themed video games. Because I mean c'mon: Skyrim belongs to the Nords.

Mount & Blade II finally opened up, finally got its hooks in me. Some games take a couple hours to do that. Some take 10. This one probably took 20 hours before I finally got what it was trying to do. I screamed, "Are you not entertained?" running the arena circuit. I racked up a retinue of 50 fighters that had every brigand in a 10-mile radius heading for the hills. And playing dress up doll with my Mongol main character was not getting old. There are some great-looking suits of armor in there, that's all I'm saying.

Surviving the Aftermath is breaking me of a couple preconceived notions. First, it proves that Banished-like city builders don't have to be stuck with programmer art. And second, that Banished-like city builders don't have to be populated with sterile, unresponsive characters. Boy do I love Banished. But it's wonderful seeing progress being made on a subgenre that spun out of Banished in 2014.