Geez, it's been a while since a blog post. I keep saying I'm going to use this blog more, but I keep neglecting to. Maybe one day that'll change.
Anyway, quite a bit has happened since my last post. I'm still moderating / sysopping on the Reddit OpenTTD network out of the goodness of my heart. I've been playing a lot of bemani, especially IIDX (where I'm now 8th dan), and getting stuck in with the UK community (who are all absolutely amazing, shoutout to you all). I also got the opportunity to head over to Germany for Gamescom this year for the first time with @al2k4 and @JoycieC, and fit in some good old fashioned signtseeing and roadtrips at the same time.
There's nothing particularly special to be reported in terms of Gamescom however: the queues were obscene, the place was rammed, a coke cost me £2.50 - although I did get to have a play with the HTC Vive (Valve's VR thingy), and it absolutely blew me away. The Rift never really gelled with me, it's easy to tell you're in a VR experience, but the Vive seriously had me questioning reality for 10 minutes or so. Genuinely impressive, and will probably make me end up throwing money when the retail release is made. I'm hoping to head back again next year, hopefully with Wednesday trade passes to avoid the stupid queues and actually get a chance to play some stuff. Thanks to Aposke for putting up with us all week (and blasting Nanahira down the autobahn!)
One major thing that has changed in the last year is that I've basically completed the full transition from "perfectly normal PC gamer sat in room" to "I'm pretty much a trash tier weeaboo now" (although you could probably tell that from the blog header now). I watch a lot of anime, as evidenced by my hummingbird. To make matters worse, I'm already contemplating which figures and t-shirts I should be buying (where did I go wrong?) I guess I've only really got myself to blame here, but I'll place all the blame on @matchi_chan and @richardr for being terrible enablers that brought me to the terrible taste in moe I have today.
Speaking of twitter, I'm probably going to be tweeting a lot more anime and otaku-related stuff from this point on. If you're not up for that, this is your warning to get out while you can. If you don't want to heed this warning, I apologise in advance.
Speaking of anime...
Japan Tour 2015
It's something I've wanted to do since I was about 8 (I wrote "Go to Japan, the home of gaming!" on my "What are your future hopes and dreams?" worksheet over 12 years ago), and this year I finally get to tick the box on my bucket list. Together with the aformentioned @matchi_chan and @richardr, in just over a month's time we'll be flying over to Osaka for a week, hitting Tokyo for 2 weeks, buying way more than we can afford, doing some temples and other cultural stuff occasionally, and having an absolute whale of a time. Some arcade games will be played. Some food will be eaten. Some trains will be ridden. Some visits will be made to Akihabara. And I've still got to work out what I'm doing for my 21st over there.
You have no idea how hyped I am.
We'll be tweeting and vining when possible while we're over there, so be sure to follow us if you want your feed filled with nothing but J-Culture for 3 weeks.
Events and stuff
I won't be at theBIGGAME 40 because I'll be on the other side of the planet, but you should still go. (The cake is really good.)
The UK Rhythm Community's Q4 meetup (currently scheduled for late November) has a pretty severe issue with the venue being in some pretty significant limbo. We should have some more information regarding that whole kerfuffle in the next few weeks, so stay tuned. I'll be there wherever it ends up happening though, rain or shine. (Iman's house?)
I didn't do i55 this year for two reasons: firstly, it was far too expensive to be considering throwing money at just before heading to Japan, and secondly, I'm still not 100% happy with their split of BYOC / festival. Seeing as they're moving to the NEC from next event however, I'll definitely be taking a much harder look at doing it again come i58 (hopefully they fix all the new-venue teething issues by then).
That's pretty much it.