This Week in Games: 1/10/2017

Oldies are Goodies

It’s been a week for classics and homages. I nabbed a cheap copy of Rock Band 4, joined a zealously casual World of Warcraft crew, and continued to prod cautiously at Pillars of Eternity.

Rock Band 4

As a person who was in college in 2008, I have played some Rock Band in my day. I’d never owned a copy and always made a mediocre showing. I decided to try my hand on its most modern iteration with the goal of ‘perfecting’ a song on the game’s expert difficulty. I spent a few hours working my way uneasily back up to medium difficulty. I played some Iron Maiden, and bought a few more metal songs. I find myself feelings unsure as to the best way to hone my skills. I guess I’ll just keep playing songs

World of Warcraft

How did this happen? Steeped in manic shame, my friend David proposed a return to Azeroth seemingly out of the blue a few days ago. Betraying our age, he plied me with promises of restraint and responsible time management. We resolved to meet as a group of 5. Together we would play for a few hours once a week. The game remains a frictionless hole into which time vanishes. We wiled away 3 hours in no time, and made significant progress toward being ready for our first dungeon: Ragefire Chasm. I’m playing an undead warrior in my first outing as a tank. His name is Hellbows.

Pillars of Eternity

My greatest gift of Christmas was learning that this now 2 year-old game would run on my geriatric macbook. It’s a top-down tactical RPG in the style of old Infinity Engine games like Baldur’s Gate and Planescape: Torment. I’ve found myself unable to really grok the ruleset that governs the combat. Right now I find myself feeling my way through the dark, being empowered by realization after realization about the ways to work the rules. Aside from one miserable slog against a mad lord and his armored retainers, I’ve found that the game is willing to forgive ignorance and offer a really nicely balanced set of challenges.

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