Gaming Weekend Highlights: H1Z1, Sims 4, FFXIV, More!

I continue to throw a bit of variety into my gaming sessions this week, mostly working on single player games. I wanted to do what I call “gift week” this week (since Saturday is my birthday). I thought it was only fitting that I spend some time playing through games that were gifted to me by other folks. These games are also on my Steam challenge list of want-to-play. So, that’s part of what I’ve been doing.

Here’s my roundup!

FFXIV: Crafting to Heavensward

I continue to take a break from dungeons and heavy content in FFXIV, letting myself wind down a bit in this time leading up to Heavensward. I still try to log in every day to take care of FC stuff (we just celebrated our first year birthday!), but most of my concentration has been on doing crafting dailies. While this is by far not the fastest way to level crafting, I know, I just want to casually make progress on all of my crafting and gathering classes at once. This is a good way to do that.

This weekend, I bumped my botanist, miner and goldsmith up to level 40. The rest of my classes are hovering in the high 30s with nothing below 37. Pretty happy with that progress, though I can’t be certain I’ll have everything to 50 come expansion. That’s fine, though. I have a feeling the gap between 50 and 60 is going to take quite some time, and I’m in no rush.

Zuri's Current Crafting Progress
Zuri’s Current Crafting Progress

H1Z1: The Return

We set up camp next to this spooky looking church.
We set up camp next to this spooky looking church.

I’ve been keeping an ear out for all of H1Z1’s updates lately, and was very pleased to see the new female avatars appear in game this week, along with grouping and a server wipe. So, when my zombie hunting troop decided to play H1Z1 for the first time since January (I believe), I was happy to come in and check out all the changes in the game.

The game is much, much improved. There’s actually loot now, which allows us to actually play the game, rather than play a berry-picking simulator. I was able to actually try out the crafting system this time, since tools, food and weapons weren’t impossible to get like they were the first time we played. I successfully made a wood shack, learned how to make storage containers, and am generally having a lot more fun than I did the first time (sans bears).

I’m still not sure what good grouping actually does in the game, though. You can’t see members of your group on the map (don’t know if that changes when you find a compass because none of us have one). But I’m glad that grouping is at least a thing that’s being developed.

I’ll write up a more in-depth post about this later as I have a feeling we’ll be playing this a bit this week.

Sims 4: Get to Work

I’ve been spending a lot of my gaming time binging on Sims 4, playing through all of the new career tracks from the Get to Work expansion. I’ll probably write a full article about this, too, as I have a lot to say about this expansion… and probably will have more once I finally get to the retail portion of the game.


I maxed out the detective career, have made it pretty far in the doctor career, and finally started playing the scientist career, which I saved for my KiNa/Kip character in particular. Oh, man… I’m having a blast with the scientist career – it’s absolutely perfect for Kip! Not only does he get to geek out creating inventions, but he can use this ray gun he crafted to mind control his co-workers into doing things. The best part? When he successfully mind controls people, he gives the HAHAHAH evil laugh (and gets a Mwahahah moodlet), just like he’d really do.

So, that, amongst contacting aliens… getting abducted… and simmers know where that leads. Yeah. It’s been an interesting ride this week. I’m trying to figure out how to weave it all into my Sygnus Sims storyline in the future. So much content to write about!

Divinity: Original Sin

This was a Christmas gift (thank you!), so it’s been on my I-need-to-try list for a while. I’ve spent some time with it, but not enough time for me to feel like I can give it a really good writing-about. It’s been a long time since I’ve actually tried to work through a long-form single-player RPG, so I’m feeling pretty rusty.

From the outset, though, the game surprised me at character creation by allowing me to create not one, but two, characters to start with. I knew it was a co-op game, but I didn’t realize that I’d be creating half my party from the outset. This actually enthralled me, and I promptly rolled the tank/mage combo of a Leona and Ben. Best choice ever… as I love how the characters banter between each other.

Ben and Leona at character creation

I’m only a few hours in, but I’ve already been tasked with a quest to save time (and hence the world) itself. So, I’d say things are looking pretty epic. The game is sure placing a lot of hopes on a rusty gamer like me, though. I’m glad you can save anywhere you want, because choices you make stick with you. And when the game warns you not to dig things up, you should probably listen.

This is definitely a game that’ll get a Steam Challenge post later, once I have a stronger feel for it.

Analogue: A Hate Story

2015-05-03_00002This was also a gift game (thank you!), and the first visual novel I’ve ever played. I did play through to the end of the story (or, what the game considers being 94%), though the game has several different endings that I went and looked up later.

What can I even say about this game in just a few paragraphs. It really can’t be done. There’s too much to talk about and too many conflicting feelings I have walking away from it. I laud the game for excellent design and clever methods of storytelling. But I can’t say that I liked the story… and I don’t think that’s a bad thing! In fact, the more I thought about it afterwards (it’s a good sign when the game makes me think about it afterwards), the more I think that I wasn’t supposed to like this story.

Now whether I was meant to dislike the characters (which I did), I’m not so sure. But I laud the game for giving me that moral choice. I, of course, being a softie took Hyun-ae with me at the end… but if I were to do it over again, I’d leave her butt there on the ship like she deserves!

Anyhow… probably a full Steam Challenge discussion for this game later! It deserves a full article.

Neko Atsume

2015-05-03 15.43.28The Japanese cat app that a lot of folks online are talking about made itself at home on my iPhone this weekend. It’s a cute, low-maintenance cat collecting game that I passed on to my sister.

While it does have some freemium elements to it, they’re not so overpowering as to be off-putting. It’s kinda a phone-zen sort of thing, something to check from time to time throughout the day, just to see which cats have come to play with stuff and what they’ve left you.


This week, I’m looking forward to a long three day weekend to celebrate my birthday! I know I’ll be hitting up H1Z1 some more with the zombie troop as my sister is also on vacation from work this week. Along with that, I’d like to delve into more Divinity, try Project Zomboid (another game gift), and keep spinning stories with Sims 4.

I have a lot to write about, as well. Happy to be trying out a lot of Steam games lately. That keeps the inspiration flowing!


  1. Glad to hear you enjoyed what you played of Divinity! It’s fun single-player, but it’s much better co-op, in my opinion. Of course, getting a co-op partner for a 60-100 hour (or maybe longer…) game is… not easy. Even with my brother we’ve drifted to other games, though I do keep meaning to get back to it. I still like the idea of a two-person review of it. 🙂

    I’m still more focused on FFXIV, though. My progress has gotten slow recently, however, since I don’t seem to be online when a lot of the other FC people are online, and it takes *so long* to get through the queue for some of the dungeons and trials I’m working on as a DPS.

    1. With summer starting, the net gets a lot more quiet as a whole. I have a feeling a lot of folks are taking a break, finishing up classes and exams, etc. until Heavensward comes out. I expect guild activity to drop and then pick up again with the expansion.

      I know that feeling as I did almost all of end game solo on my bard (needed help with Steps of Faith, but that was it, really). Sadly, queuing is a necessity for progression, especially with 8 man content. Expect a standard queue of 20-30 mins for most instances. Even healers don’t always get a fast queue at end game anymore.

      As you get into higher level primals (Leviathan, Shiva, etc), I found the queues got a bit better. The story also gets a lot better after you take down King Mog. So just push through this part and use Duty Finder if you have to. Keep in mind that you just need to clear it once to keep moving forward. That’s kinda the nature of the game – sorry. 🙁

      You can always queue and then switch to crafting or gathering while waiting. Then just switch back to bard when your queue pops. There’s some limits on what you can be doing (no chocobo companion, for instance), but you don’t have to do nothing while waiting for the DF.

      Don’t ignore Crystal Tower to earn your Tomes for higher level armor. You’re going to get to a point where you can’t enter main scenario trials without a higher average item level, and CT is really the best way to boost that. Unlocking the next dungeon in CT (Syrcus Tower) will open up a whole new world of gear for you, but requires a higher ilvl to enter. Plus, running the raids gives you practice for playing in larger groups, which I found very helpful.

      I find ST easier than the Lab, and prefer to run that when possible. ST also allows you to get the components to unweather the armor you’re purchasing with Tomes. You’re going to need that level of armor to complete the current story and to start Heavensward.

      Also, take some time to do the Hildibrand stories if you need a break from dungeons. Those are always amusing fun. 🙂

      1. The main problem is I’m just running out of things I’m interested in doing while I’m waiting for a queue to pop. I’m kind of bored of crafting, gathering *really* bores me, there’s a limit on beast tribe quests… and every storyline I’m on right now needs a trial to continue! =P I actually enjoy running the dungeons and trials, it’s just the waiting time that annoys me. That, and I often only have an hour or so at a time (if that), so waiting half an hour for a queue sometimes just isn’t possible on a lot of weekdays. And then on weekends I play Pathfinder with the family. 😀

        Maybe I’ll start joining queues and then playing a game on my laptop while I’m waiting. 😀 Or maybe it’s time to get that second monitor…

        1. Yeah, there’s not a lot that can really fix that. I always just had a “get this over with” attitude, knowing I’d get it done and keep moving on.

          Even if you had guild folks with you, for upcoming 8 mans, it’s doubtful you can have a full FC party. You’re still going to hit the queue.

          I never really remember being bored, but then, I set the game sounds to play in the background even when minimized, played in a window, and just surfed the web and stuff while waiting on the queue to pop. 🙂

          Would you believe me if I told you this is far superior to what it used to be when you actually had to spend hours trying to shout and get a group together in MMOs manually? Having a Duty Finder that does that for you automatically, and matches a party with all of the proper classes, is really quite amazing. I guess that’s why I’m patient with it. I know how it used to be in older games.

          I just know if I have to hit a trial solo, to make sure it’s on a day I have the extra time to wait for it to pop. Running Duty Finder is the nature of this sort of game, I’m afraid.

          The whole story WON’T continue to be nothing but trials, I promise. It’s really just this first part, which I felt was pretty crazy throwing stuff to run for no real reason. I know I also paused there with Zuri for a while for the same reason, but the only way to get through it was just to get it done and get on to better stuff.

        2. Haha…

          “Back in MY day, every time you died, you lost 10% of your experience and could DE-LEVEL. Not to mention, you had to PAY a White Mage to come and rez you.”

          True story.

          Youngun MMO players have no idea how easy you’ve got it now. XD XD XD

        3. Haha, I remember, the good old times with being deleveled due to a small mistake and loosing most if not all of the exp you made that evening XD

          Nowadays the penalties are small in comparison, I think PoE is one of the few games that still penalize you for dying.

      2. Anyway, I’m not trying to fill up the comments here with complaining about queue times. =P Having the two characters for Divinity be Ben and Leona sounds pretty funny, especially with all the bantering you can have them do.

  2. Congrats on the progress =D

    Divinity is a good game, Though I can’t say how it is in single player… as I only played Co-Op with Aria. XD We’re catching up again as we decided to start over from scratch. I made some mistakes and we wanted to reroll the characters.

    I haven’t been on FF lately though, been busy and most of my projects are stalled. I plan to at least get the story done before the expansion… I hope. c; Though most of the time I’m on there is really no one online in the FC =/ Timezones can be a pain.

    I will have to post up some things for my Sims 4 gaming from this weekend. I did a lot XD Found some interesting things though. =)c

    1. Yeah, there’s a handful of folks on in the FC sometimes later at night, but for the most part, I think people are taking a break. They’ve done what they wanted to do before expansion, and will return then. I know that I’m one of them – mostly just doing my crafting dailies.

      There should be a big Sims 4 patch today, I heard. I’m watching for it! 🙂

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