Writing

Recently

Miitopia: where you end up in cafe enjoying your coffee, with Dexter from Dexter's Lab being your barista.

I got vaccinated this month. Canada’s rollout has been slower than say the US, but come vaccine day I was in and out within 20 minutes (that’s including my 15 minute waiting period). There are rumours that the 8 week waiting period between doses might be shortened.

On the one hand, I’m excited. The potential for things to “go back to normal”, as I imagine everyone is thinking. We can go into shops without having to worry how many people are inside. No more following confusing arrows on the floor. No more masks (although I’d like there to be a normalization of mask-wearing in North America for the common cold or the flu).

But on the other hand, I’m pretty anxious about going back to normal. We’ve spent the last year and a half away from each other. We’ve become familiar with fewer people around us. Seeing other people nearby can be a source of anxiety and worry. Should we be rushing to get back to normal? There is a controlled plan to gradually move things back to the “before times”, but can we count on everyone to follow the rules dutifully? There is a sense of low-feeling anxiety about the whole thing for me.

I’m sure I’m not alone in this, but since the pandemic started I’ve gained weight. The Pandemic Pounds, as it were. With summer coming up, more people are going to want to visit the beach, go swimming, all that. I’m feeling self-conscious. I don’t feel ready, yet. I want to work on myself.

Personally speaking I’m going to need my own “rollout plan” for how things are going to move back to normal.

Watching

Finished watching season 2 of For All Mankind. The finale was spectacular. I understand now why all the family drama was emphasized. There wouldn’t be the same impact without caring about the characters.

I’m excited for season 3, but I imagine we’re at least 2 years off from that now.

On an otherwise comfy Friday evening, my partner and I decided to finally watch the four TNG Star Trek movies (7-10). I was impressed with the large scope of the movie budget. Everything looked and felt much more grandiose. It was like watching extra long episodes of the show itself (which I think others might find a negative) — but personally it channels the feeling of the show so well they don’t feel out of place at all. Except for maybe the 7th movie’s penchant for extremely moody, dark lightning.

Playing

I’ve finished the majority of Super Mario 3D World. I made it all the way to “World Crown”, which houses the ultimate platforming challenge (as far as the game is concerned at least). It’s challenging indeed (I’ve lost count of how many lives I’ve chewed through… at least 200 at this point). It’s one of Nintendo’s better “traditional” Mario titles, although with Odyssey kicking around it’s not even close which one would make the better Switch title (it’s Odyssey). That being said though, the Bowser’s Fury add-on is a fun romp. It’s like they smooshed 3D World and Odyssey together and ran with it. It’s a little weird, but it works out. I wish the framerate were better though. It can really chug sometimes.

I started playing Catherine: Full Body, which is the remaster of the original game. There are supposedly plenty of extras, but having never played the original I’m not aware of what’s new. The puzzle aspect is confusing at first, but once it clicks it’s engaging. It channels the feelings of Tetris, like when you get into the zone. I’m eager for more.

My game du jour is undoubtedly Miitopia. The Switch version is a port of the 3DS version released many a year ago. It’s like an homage to the JRPGs of old, but without all the grinding and crushing difficulty. In fact the game has largely been a breeze so far, but I’m fine with that. It makes a perfect couch game. Something to play when you want to take it easy.

What really grabbed me about it was the ability to plonk your own Miis into the game. I’ve taken the opportunity to put my friends in as our main party so far, and inject whatever famous person I feel like making (fictional or otherwise). Thanks to the game’s fantastic writing, you can end up with some hilarious moments that wouldn’t otherwise happen without such creative freedom.

My character in Miitopia exclaiming 'Newman!' when the Dark Lord suddenly appears.

The Dark Lord in my game is none other than Newman himself, eternal enemy to Jerry Seinfeld. My Carefree Guide, the guy you meet at the very start, is Kramer (who is pretty good pals with Newman), and this moment made me laugh out loud:

Don’t be surprised if this conspiracy goes all the way to the top of Kramerica Industries!

I dedicated the better part of an evening creating countless Miis and verifying their accuracy with my partner. She has the patience of a saint I tell you.

Until next time!