2017 Half-Year Mark

Happy 7 month anniversary 2017! 🙂  Am I the only one who celebrates a half year anniversary? haha

So it’s now the middle of July and here I am, trying to juggle work and school (for my son this September as well as for myself) AND finding the time to edit my book, which isn’t going very well, thanks to a few set backs.  But I’m far from done though.

My short term goals this year was to basically get my book ready for publication by spending as much time on it as possible but family member hospitalizations kind of took a toll on my motivation and I’m just trying my best to keep that fire alive.

This coming September my son will be starting school and I’m going to be scrambling in between that and work.  I’m lucky I have my parents who are able to pick him up from school if I can’t.  I’d like to do some Soccer-Mom stuff just to get the experience and figure out why they are called ‘soccer mom’.  I’m pretty nervous of course, because I can still remember how scared, nervous and anxious I was at his age.  There’s a noticeable sense of social anxiety within our family, which myself and my siblings suffered at some point.  Since we all managed to overcome it, I guess it’s one thing that helps assure me that my son will eventually too.  Crossing my fingers.

My own medical scare is still causing a heap of nervousness and stressing me out more than I normally am.  What I’ve been doing is picking up my old habits from elementary all the way up to High School-which is my love for cartoons, comic books and videogames.  It’s helped me to loosen up, relax and learn to take each day as it comes.  I’ve been whiling my way with videogames these past 12+ months and notice how much less I experience chess pains and headaches from stress-even though I sleep less than 6 hours a day most times.  Literally de-stressing my brain has helped to reassure my body to function even better.  Mind over matter, is it? Always make the time to stop and smell the flowers ❤

Reading many books have not only improved my English reading and comprehension skills, but improved my imagination too.  There’s never a time where I am reading a description of something, and have trouble picturing it in my head.  Literature in videogames is especially important for the story and I am the type pf gamer whose big on character development, adventure, science-fiction, and story driven games that gives their characters a sense of purpose that the gamer, myself, can identify with. My first game was most definitely with the NES (Nintendo Entertainment) system, playing Super Mario Bros and Duck Hunt.  My dad actually bought it for my young uncle and we, along with my younger brother, shared the system.  We were a lot like siblings.  After our taste with the NES, we had our try with the SNES (Super Nintendo Entertainment System) where we played the Super Mario All Stars, Donkey Kong and other titles. Sigh..so nostalgic thinking about it.  I still own an NES system and the Super Mario All Stars which I play from time to time.  Whats so memorable about it is that, my mom played it too! 🙂  It was one of her favorite things to do when she wanted to unwind when knitting or sewing wasn’t helping.  It never crossed my mind that games are de-stressing devices that can help people mentally and physically.  It is such an under-appreciated form of art/therapy.

I can’t help but wonder how everyone else who are in my age group feels about videogames.  You know, ever since the ESRB was created, videogames have been a hot topic when it comes to children’s behaviors and violence.  Researches have been done to prove games are decreasing childrens brain function and other researches show how it increases brain functions.  I do believe, in my experience anyway, that it has helped increased brain function for me.  My motor skills, critical thinking, strategic planning and emotional understanding.  Studies have found that children who play videogames, have an understanding for compassion and exhibit them more often in their life.  The stigma that was created spawned from a few games in the 90’s. Titles like Mortal Kombat and Grand Theft Auto, to name a few, and it’s left a stigma in the videogame industry since.  I’ve personally played Mortal Kombat, and while it is bloody/gory, I don’t find myself gravitating toward those types of games, though I also didn’t have anything against it either.  Grand Theft Auto was a videogame that was really made for a more mature adult for sure, especially with the ‘Hot Coffee’ version.  I’ll let you research on that.  And there is nothing wrong with a rating system that helps you identify what the contents within the games are.  I am constantly trying to manage what my son can find on my tablet when he’s looking at youtube for trains, play doh’s and hot wheels, etc.  I might be boring you with all this information right now, but I hope it’s also been somewhat educational as well.

I bought my first PS4 system early this year and have been trying to catch up on all the games I missed during my 5 year long game hiatus.  A lot happened and I’m so happy to be back at it 🙂  I’ve just signed up to register for Beta Testing for a game for the first time, and even though I won’t know if I’ll get the chance, I’m just glad I made the decision to try my hand.  Working within the videogame industry has been a childhood dream of mine and I hope I can make it come through sometime in the future.

So Happy Half Year Anniversary to 2017.  I hope many of you are doing the things you love and enjoying each moment in life to the fullest ❤ 🙂

Final Fantasy XV, the 10 Year Wait (Spoilers!)

the media threads that I follow, so many people were bashing it, talking about how it’s just taking too long and it’s probably not going to be any good.  I was influenced by these comments.  I did thought this game wasn’t going to be any good.  I was wrong.  And I am so glad I was wrong.

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Final Fantasy XV Certificate of Completion ________________________________________________

 

I’ll be honest with this one.  I really thought it wasn’t going to be-not even on the same level of Final Fantasy 7.  In fact, in the media threads that I follow, so many people were bashing it, talking about how it’s just taking too long and it’s probably not going to be any good.  I was influenced by these comments.  I did thought this game wasn’t going to be any good.  I was wrong.  And I am so glad I was wrong.

I first started playing the FF series starting with Mystic Quest.  Appropriately, it was deemed the beginners RPG.  Must have been in 3rd or 4th grade at the time and this was a system I was sharing with my uncle and little brother.  This game was vivid for me because, the musical talent that was included was so wonderful; the battle system was simplified; and the open world was easy to navigate because each location was locked, just like Super Mario World was.  I rarely play a videogame nowadays without compaing it to this one game-though I have been told that Final Fantasy3/6 was the best in the series.  I’ve yet to play them, but am trying to locate them in order to judge that for myself.

There were a lot of new things added to FFXV that I enjoyed, specifically Prompto’s camera function.  I think because there have always been a time when I thought, “wow, wish I could havectaken a picture of that” and here it’s offered as an in-battle technique.  It’s awesome!

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Final Fantasy XV- In-Battle Camera Mode _________________________________________________

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Final Fantasy XV- In-Battle Camera Mode _________________________________________________

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Final Fantasy XV- In-Battle Camera Mode _________________________________________________

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Final Fantasy XV- In-Battle Camera Mode _________________________________________________

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Final Fantasy XV- In-Battle Camera Mode _________________________________________________

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Final Fantasy XV, Royal ride, Regalia Camera Mode _______________________________________

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Final Fantasy XV, Regalia-Type F (it flies) Camera Mode ___________________________________

 

I also really enjoyed the Ascension grid, where our Ability Points are gained and used to increase each characters skills.  I think the first time we saw something like this was Final Fantasy X.  The first FF in the series to be on the Playstation 2. The only difficult thing was gaining the AP and EXP, which are the Experience Points which are used to Level Up your characters.  After a while, the AP’s were somewhat easier thanks to the Timed Quests and certain Ascension skills, but the EXP was still something I needed to grind for hours and hours.  EXP Grinding is something I do for almost every RPG I play, in fact, I’m well over 100+ hours in Final Fantasy VII because I’m still trying to Level Up my Knights of the Round Summon, and in Final Fantasy VIII, I’m around 100+ hours as well doing the same thing for the Doom Train and Bahamut.

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Final Fantasy XV- Times Quest Leaderboard Ranking _____________________________________

I absolutely enjoyed touring the locations.  They did an excellent job because I loved being a tourist and being able to take pictures as if I’m really an authentic tourist in a real place.  Altissia was breathtaking and I wish there were more cities like that that I could have visited.

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Final Fantasy XV Altissia __________________________________________________________________

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Final Fantasy XV Altissia __________________________________________________________________

In the end, this game was long.  It was good.  It was emotional.  And it absolutely surpassed Final Fantasy VII for me.  I only wish there was more to explore and since there are DLC’s for this, I guess I am happy with that…for now 🙂  I’m really hoping that a Final Fantasy XV-II is in the works somehow-my wishful thinking, of course.  SquareEnix did a really excellent job of helping the players become emotionally involved as we aren’t just active participants in this RPG, but as well as be one of the brothers (or sister). I wanted to talk about this more, but I’ve spoiled a lot of the game details for some players already.  I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did 🙂