Five Things I've Enjoyed This November

A very game-heavy November, in which I’ve rekindled my love for Pokémon, finally tried out Hades and got mad at myself for not playing Outer Worlds earlier.

08/12/2020

This past November I was really fortunate to dive into a couple of different games. I strongly believe that you should never stop playing current games (and games in general) when working on games yourself, which is why I always try my hardest to do so. Thankfully my freelance work often automatically allows me to do so, but my personal list of games I want to play is, as it is probably for everyone, never ending.

With the lockdown and everything connected to it, every day feels bumpy. My mood changes day to day, but some exciting things happened this past month, which thankfully gave me a big motivation boost in general. It is times like these in which I can really recognize the importance of games in my life and how thankful I am for them and their developers. So without further ado, let’s dive into my personal November favorites.

1.  Pokémon sword

Believe it or not: Although I have played almost every single Pokémon since I was six years old, I have never ever finished a single game. In general, finding the motivation to finish a game takes a lot out of me, so it isn’t something new. Especially with Pokémon games, it is more about the journey for me. I love collecting the tiny monsters and I love evolving them. But becoming the “greatest of them all”? Meh.

This year I finally started to properly use my Switch, mostly thanks to Animal Crossing: New Horizons. But this November I have also started getting back into Pokémon Sword, and I still absolutely love it. The fact that you can now visually see Pokémon walking around the world feels super exciting for me and makes me more involved when walking around. However, I am still mad that there is no option to make one of your Pokémon follow you, unless you buy one of the expansions. Still, even though I would really appreciate Game Freak taking on some bigger innovations, Pokémon Sword and Shield feels like a great evolution. But holy shit, seeing a giant Pokémon running after you in the Wild Area is a terrifying experience.

2.  hades

I do not enjoy roguelike games. Like, at all. In terms of skill I would rate myself as a medium to bad player, so roguelike games do not seem like the most fun experiences for someone like me. I haven’t even played a single game of Supergiant Games before Hades, but something made me intrigued.

Playing Hades confirms my statement of not being a particular skilles player, because man, I die a lot. But I am having a lot of fun dying, reentering the halls of the underworld, finding cool boons and then dying again. Obviously the aesthetic of the game is stunning and probably the sole reason that got me curious about Hades. I guess whether I continue to enjoy it or stop playing will be decided by either me becoming better or — not? Nevertheless, a great game experience to add to my “game portfolio”.

3.  outer worlds

I am so mad at myself for not playing Outer Worlds earlier, because this is the role-playing experience I have searched for after finishing GreedFall. I love to always have one game that I can completely get lost in whenever I want to, and so far this is the year I have needed it the most, and was not able to find until now. 

Something about the characters of the game and the general design just didn’t speak to me whenever I saw some gameplay glimpses. I can’t really describe it, I guess I was disappointed that there were no cool Mass Effect-Aliens? Something about it being an RPG flying around in space and the absence of Alien NPCs made it feel hollow. But man, was I wrong. I love Obsidian’s humoristic approach, the science weapons, the fact that our whole crew gathers and interacts with each other on The Unreliable. The game feels much more vast than I imagined, while still not overwhelming me with too much content at the same time.

I can already tell that Outer Worlds will be on my list of December as well, and I am super glad that there already is the Peril On Gorgon DLC that I can dive into, when the awful moment comes where I finish the game. In contrast to the huge pile of games I’ve started to play, there is no additional motivation needed to finish this one.

4.  sleepyti.me

Depending on the person, this could be a super lame thing to mention. But not if you enjoy personal optimization as much as I do. 

Sleepyti.me has a rather simple goal: to make you sleep better. A big part of getting a good rest is the focus on your sleep cycles. Depending on when your alarm goes off, you could be right in the middle of one (which turns you into a half-awake Zombie) or you time it so you can wake up feeling refreshed. Generally speaking, a good night’s sleep consists out of five to six complete sleep cycles, which is why the Website calculating whenever you should go to bed or wake up is super helpful. I have definitely noticed a difference when it comes to the process of getting up and generally feeling good throughout the day. So I would highly recommend everyone to check it out!

5.  the outsider

I rewatched the first season of HBO’s The Outsider, a show that is based on a Stephen King novel of the same name. I don’t want to talk about the content of the show, because the sudden realization that the story is going somewhere completely else than I imagined, was what hooked me the most when watching it for the first time. It has a very unique approach to the themes of the series, very down to earth and approachable. 

The atmosphere is super dense, pretty grim and calm. There are a lot of details you start to notice when rewatching it and it generally leaves some topics open for the viewer to interpret, which is something I always enjoy in a good series or movie. If you enjoyed the first season of True Detective you will probably also love The Outsider.

And with that I am done talking about the five things that I have enjoyed this past November. The by far the best thing that happened to me in November was to start playing Outer Worlds, but rekindling my love for Pokémon Sword was also a great experience. December will probably be a bit more calm in terms of games. Except for Cyberpunk 2077 of course.