Checkpoint: Year of the Dog 2018 Edition

Checkpoint: Year of the Dog 2018 Edition

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Happy Lunar New Year!

The Lunar New Year weekend is upon us and it’s filled with being lazy and playing video games for me. It’s also a weekend to take stock at my gaming year thus far. Although I’m still playing Persona 5, I’ve slowly accumulated a slew of new games including:

  • Monster Hunter World
  • Dragon Ball FighterZ
  • XCOM: Enemy Within
  • Civilization VI
  • Owlboy
  • A bunch more stuff from Humble Bundle

Then there’s still the matter of Horizon: Zero Dawn, Super Hot and The Witness all which I acquired last year but have yet to play. And maybe Dragon Quest VIII [3DS], Final Fantasy XV and XII: The Zodiac Age? Maybe?

Too many games.

But even with all those games, I’m carving out time to watch my girlfriend play XCOM: Enemy Unknown. She’s never played a game like this and after watching Giant Bomb’s The Exquisite Corps, I was inspired to introduce her to this wonderful game. We’ve only played one session but I hope we’ll continue playing this on a regular basis. Watching her play is entertaining so I hope she will grow to like it and we can continue this couple activity.

Another game that I hope we will be able to enjoy together is Monster Hunter World. Neither of us ever played these games before so I think it would be entertaining trying to figure it out. 

Checkpoint: That Was Super Bowl LII Edition

Checkpoint: That Was Super Bowl LII Edition

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So that was Super Bowl LII. It was an exciting game filled with big plays from both teams and easily one of the smoothest football games I’ve ever watched due to the relatively clean nature of the game. Not a lot of time was wasted with penalties, challenges, and overly long reviews. I enjoyed the game despite the unfavorable outcome for the New England Patriots. Nick Foles’ performance was very impressive and gave me a whole new level of respect for him. I’m still a doubter on his long term viability as a starter but his playoff performance this year was nothing short of stellar.

I came away from that Super Bowl with two questions:

  1. Carson Wentz is clearly the Eagles’ long term QB so what will happen to Nick Foles?
  2. What will the Patriots defense look like with Matt Patricia gone and the lacking personnel?

I came out of last year’s Super Bowl victory amazed but entered the 2017-18 season not pondering much about it. I’m entering the off season with intrigue and look forward to finding out how everything shakes out with new coaches and quarterbacks shifting.

I’m heading towards the end of Persona 5. I don’t know how long I have left but I do know I am in the final quarter. I am still enjoying my time with the game but it has its share of issues that keep it from excelling.

Dragon Ball FighterZ is a quality video game and one that makes me want to invest a significant amount of time improving in.

Monster Hunter: World is teasing me with its ridiculousness and this 20% off coupon is making it might tempting.

Checkpoint: So That Was 2017 Edition

Checkpoint: So That Was 2017 Edition

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What a year 2017 was. It started out real shitty (literally) as I started off the new year battling a nasty stomach illness. I reached a low point in February of 2017 where I was exceptionally harsh on myself for taking early relationships too seriously. I recovered quickly and not long after, I met my very special lady. She’s the one.

I won’t get into the nitty gritty details but her and GameDealsCanada have been the primary reasons why the posts on this site have been sporadic. Life is getting in the way but that’s okay. I’m still finding pockets of time to express and jot down some thoughts here.

GameDealsCanada continues to break personal records and I’m finding myself interacting more with followers. Everyone have always been supportive of my work but 2017 felt a little extra special for whatever reason. While the website remains largely the same, the backend deals posting process underwent a significant upgrade thanks to my girlfriend.

In 2017, I unexpectedly entered the 4K HDR arena with the purchase of my LG OLED55B6P. The old LE8500 bit the dust and I’ve been basking in OLED for the latter half of the year. I didn’t really take advantage of the new screen until I watched Planet Earth II on UltraHD Blu-ray in early Decemeber. That’s a beautiful showcase for 4K and especially HDR. Gaming wise, I started to take advantage of the 4K HDR goodness with Uncharted: The Lost Legacy.

Speaking of delayed reactions to my new toys, I didn’t really take to Nintendo’s new platform until I brought it with me on a couple of Toronto trips. I didn’t really appreciate the hardware’s strengths until I sank my teeth into The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and I was able to play the game everywhere.

Health wise, I’ve been alright. I’m maintaining my weight and keeping up with exercise but I can do better. I need to get myself back in a rhythm and schedule with the stretching, pull ups, push ups etc but at least I’m staying on top of getting my steps in. Something is better than nothing, I guess.

Gaming wise, 2017 was light for me. I hear there are a lot of fantastic games but I just didn’t have the time to play many of them. I’m struggling to make a list of eligible 2017 games that I’ve completed let alone a top 10 list that I’m happy with. I might cut it down to top 5 for this year.

2017 was pretty awesome for me on a personal level and I hope the good times roll forward into the new year.

I’m currently working my way through Persona 5. I think it may end up being my last game before the 2017 game of the year cut off on Resetera. So far, I’m enjoying it very much but at the same time, I find myself getting sleepy inbetween targets.

Checkpoint: Resurgence Edition

Checkpoint: Resurgence Edition

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The Game Awards have improved dramatically. So much so that I am considering watching more of it next year. I caught a very brief glimpse of it and I was impressed with presentation and production; it actually resembled a normal awards show. Congratulations to Geoff Keighley.

The two announcements that were of note to me SoulCalibur VI and Bayonetta 3. I hear SCVI is channeling the original Dreamcast release which is something that tickles my fancy. As far as Namco fighters are concerned, I have a stronger affinity towards this sword swinging fighter than the King of Iron Fist Tournament. Bayonetta 3 is coming out exclusively for the Nintendo Switch. It’s truly amazing to see Nintendo go out and just grab this former multiplatform character action game and treat it like one of their own.

I will undoubtedly pick up the third installment but what about the upcoming Switch re-releases? I very much enjoy the idea of having the entire trilogy on one platform – especially if they all run at a near faultless 60 FPS. If I end up picking up Bayonetta 1+2 again, this would be the third copy of Bayonetta 1 that I own and the second copy of 2. Who am I kidding? If Bayonetta 2 ends up being a superior version of the Wii U exclusive, I think I’ll just pull the trigger and pick both up.

Capcom is on the upswing with a handful of announcements that’s slowly restoring my faith in the company. They’re making Mega Man 11 and it doesn’t look like a pure nostalgia grab like the 9 and 10. It looks a bit weird at first glance but I am warming up to the chosen art style. They’re also re-releasing all the Mega Man X titles on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, and Switch. I love the idea of owning all the X games on the Switch. If it’s a quality port, I might just pick it up there.

The same can be said for the 30th Anniversary Collection of Street Fighter which includes arcade ports of 12 Street Fighter games excluding IV and V. I understand not including Street Fighter V but what about IV? I would even pay closer to $79.99 for a version with that game included.

And finally, Street Fighter V actually piqued my interest this past Sunday with the reveal of the third season’s cinematic opener. Sakura, Blanka, Cody, and Sagat make their return and Capcom looks to be injecting some serious effort into the single player portion of the game. I don’t know if I would go as far as to buy this game again but I’m happy to see Capcom still trying with it.

I am still marching towards full completion of Super Mario Odyssey. By and large, I am enjoying the hell out of Super Mario Odyssey; there’s a lot to love but I am losing steam collecting Moons. Huge swathes of the moons feel like tedious collectibles like feathers in Assassin’s Creed. But for every frivoulous Moon, there’s a charming or clever one that makes it worthwhile. I think I’m ready to write up my review of it.

I started Uncharted: The Lost Legacy last week and it’s a bit of an eye opener. Going from playing Super Mario Odyssey and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild to playing Uncharted highlights some glaring communication issues with Naughty Dog’s otherwise excellent game. Uncharted (and games in general) speak their own languages and despite years of playing Uncharted, I still mess up and drop to my death on occasion. My girlfriend asked: “How do you know where to go?” and I had to explain the subtle cues and other signposts that a hyper detailed game like Uncharted uses to her. It takes time to learn and adjust to the way games like this communicate but once you do, games like this become a cake walk.

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