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Student. Writer. Activist. RPG & Card Game Fanatic. Often in that order
“Sylva, NC Main St.” by (aka Brent) is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

Scenic Sylva, a gorgeous small town with a pull for Southern tourists. The trees have transformed to molted auburn hues bringing in travelers from Georgia and South Carolina — even as new COVID cases increase.

Exploring Doom’s most horrifying entry

One of my earliest memories is staying up way too late with my Dad. Watching him play Doom in a dark bedroom with the volume down for my sleeping Mom. A CRT screen was our portal into another world, where we crawled through techno-dungeons hunting for keys. Every step forward elevating my terror as I waited for hordes of pinkies to rush us as soon as he touched the holy red keycard. Both of us trying — failing — to contain our fear lest we wake my Mom. …

“View from Cullowhee Mtn” by twbuckner is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Just last week, Beth Pressley-Hussaini invited me into her home via Zoom. She came to me from her single wide in Cullowhee — where the trees in the Blue Ridge Mountains have just started changing — to shed light on her community and the pressures they’re facing.

Is Switch the best home for cyberpunk ninja parkour? Our full review.

The screen turns bright red as the katana drops from your fingers. Sweaty palms grip the controller for one more go — and you’re in. Implants let you fly past the first guard before they know you’re there, leaving only a stain on the railing behind you. Their guns pulse with the music, but you slide through a barrage of shots to get personal. The sword, even as you put it to work glows purple with the neon lights of the city. …

I’ve kept a daily habit tracker for 31 months straight now.

“the least I can do is fill in some boxes everyday.”

And it grew, filling in boxes on graph paper was enough to give me perspective. It showed me how little I was really doing for myself.

An overview of the cutesy single-player card game that just came to Steam

If you’re close to my age, you probably recall a time in your childhood when the newest card game hit your school. Whether it was Magic, Pokémon, or Yu-Gi-Oh, for a brief period of time the most important thing to those kids was cards. Cardpocalypse is a game full of targeted nostalgia for those of us who experienced it, and a fun take on the RPG-lite for those who didn’t.

For old-school frights in a bite-sized package, look no further.

Last Friday I booted up one of the most mystifying games I’ve ever played: Paratopic. As part of an effort to get spooky this October my partner and I played it on Switch — which is about the most confusing tonal experience you could have. Going from the cute blue-red clicks and beeps of the Switch interface to Paratopic’s industrial nightmare is like falling through Yog Sothoth’s portal into a Chuck E. Cheese.

The best praise I can give this game is that I’ve been playing it since 2013.

Courtesy of the Nintendo shop

In Game Dev Tycoon you, shockingly, are a game developer working from the halcyon days of the Commodore 64 up to the present. It’s a strategy-simulation with animations and sounds so polished and satisfying that I still play it just to hear those little *plops*.

A recent protest in Graham, Alamance’s county seat.

As part of my series interviewing locals in rural North Carolina communities I was introduced to Tabatha. She lives on a farm with her family in Mebane, right on the outskirts of Alamance. Her family moved there in ’95 when their house was on a backroad. Now, Tabatha sees her area changing. The house across the street where she used to bring baked goods has lost its familiarity as neighbors passed. And the road has grown into a busy street with a new development being built right around the corner. …

Chelsea at the peak of a hike in Panthertown Valley, Sapphire, NC

Last week I introduced y’all to a wonderful activist from Clyde, North Carolina. Chelsea had so much to say that we felt it was best to have her interview in two pieces. This week we return to those wondrous Appalachian Mountains. We return to the town of Clyde, where the ideals of Southern American communities are represented by the compassion shared from neighbor to neighbor. A place where kind non-profit leaders set up outdoor pantries in response to the food deserts the free market has created. Locals set up a Substance Use Prevention Alliance to help those who are struggling…

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