Thursday, March 1, 2012

The Ever Changing Landscape of Kansas

Maybe it's because I'm so busy or maybe it's that there is so much on my plate coming up, or maybe my interests are changing. Whatever the case may be it is becoming annoying.

I think it all started when my Xbox Gamerscore went over 100,003. Since then starting any new game has been impossible. Currently I pass the time either playing FIFA 11 (typically not my game but I like starting with a not so good team, i.e. Chesterfield Football Club and seeing what I can do with them over the seasons) or trying to improve my high scores on Pinball FX2.

I also am trying to play through Skyrim which was a game I was looking forward to for years, but right now trying to make progress in that game is like trying to carry 15 bags of luggage through a busy airport. I literally have no interest in any story driven game or any game that I can't compete in. iRacing is still good on my Kansas list, but with my time short this week, and the Indycar at Dover (awful idea!) I don't really have the time to put into practicing to race.

So last night I sat at home wondering what to do. I live in a gamer's pardise and if I spent every hour of the year trying to finish each game I have I'd probably come up short. And yet I don't want to spend just one hour doing it. Is this just a phase? Is iRacing that much better than anything else? Or, are my tastes changing?

One thing that has been introduced this week is my desire to play the piano. Granted, I'm horrible and have no training or lessons of any sort, but I can read sheet music to a degree. How did I learn? Funny side story; eight years ago my favorite song was CBS's music opening to their Winter Olympic coverage. Even in 1992 it was my favorite song and I think my mom wanted to disown me because I hummed it for months and years after each edition of the Winter Games. After 1998 when CBS lost the rights to NBC it was devastating to me because I knew NBC would probably use John William's theme that they used for the Summer Games. Anyway, in 04, I got out my VHS tape of the final primetime telecast that CBS had and saw that the song they used was written by Tamara Kline. Using my internet detective skills... aka Google... I found her, e-mailed her if she had a copy of the song, she did not, but she sent me the sheet music. Very quickly I learned and for about two months I practiced about 15 minutes each night. Then, when I got Xbox Live and Toca Race Driver 2, the piano playing stopped.

Once again though I find myself being sucked into the piano. Every time I walk by I sit down and practice just a little bit more and now I'm pretty good at knowing where the C, F, and G chords are. Still though I hope my neighbors can't hear my attempts at some of these songs, but slowly it is becoming a hyper-Kansas to the point that I'm interested in actually taking lessons. Do I have the time to do so? Most certainly not, at least not in the next few months, but it is something on my mind.

So this is where I'm at now. I get asked a lot from parents at presentations, "Will my child ever quit playing video games?" and to that I've always answered my experiences that I will probably be playing them until I am 100 years old. Now though I'm not so sure. I think I will always want to play a game that I can compete in like iRacing or NHL, but as for story driven games I'm afraid that the tide has turned. What really troubles me is that I hope I can trudge on through Mass Effect 3 when it comes out because that's another game I've waited years for. And then again, maybe I will be at my piano creating horrible dissonance but enjoying every second of it. 


  1. Dude! Skyrim does nothing for you? What's wrong with you? Did you take an arrow to the knee?

  2. Going off your tastes in "music," I certainly hope your neighbors can't hear anything you are playing :D

  3. @ Anon, nice... I was wondering if anyone would use that line.

    @ Ryan, Aren't you glag you aren't my neighbor :)

  4. Er.
    Sorry about spoiling your piano career.

  5. @ RFT, it took me a moment to put everything together but that might just be the wittiest line ever put on this blog!

  6. Really glad you have your own place:)

  7. Nooeeesss, another RPG player lost... D8
    Though I must say I do feel the same problem. I'm a big Zelda fan, but still I can't get myself to finishing the game. (and I just lost The Game and so did you)
    I think a lot of thrill has been taken out of RPG's lately. There was a time it was a terrible thing to die, since you'd have to start over with a lot of things. This has become less and less of an issue. Also, to me it seems that it's usually easier to figure out how to kill the monster. (eye, neck, stomach... One of these is usually right)

    Me personally, I don't think my taste in gaming has changed. I think gaming itself has changed, which for some people is for the better and for others it's not.

    But that's just my guess.

  8. My 17 yr old has just dragged out the Sims...after years of doing other things. And she is still killing them on purpose like she did when she was small. Sicko! I remember when she was about 9, her older sister told her she was being mean to her Sims, and she replied, "They are just depressed pixels." We still laugh.