Played, Playing, and To Play: January 2018

Ahoy, Joy+Sticks readers!

Can you believe that 2017 is already in our rear-view mirrors? I don’t know about you, but I for one am kind of relieved. I’ve barely had time to play any games between Christmas, New Year’s Eve, and my growing to-do list of blog posts. Now, most of that is finally behind me, and I’m ready to get right back into my backlog, but as I do I’ve decided to start chronicling my adventures in a sort of monthly gaming diary. We’re calling it, “Played, Playing, and to Play.” Keep a look out for new installments every single month right here on!

Without further ado, here’s a rundown of everything I played over the last month, what I’m playing now, and what I want to play next.

P.S.: I would have laughed in your face if you told me last year that this list was going to be dominated by Nintendo Switch titles. Oh, how things have changed.


The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim on Nintendo Switch

One of the biggest draws of the Switch was the promise of a portable version of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. It was a day one purchase for me, even though it was my fifth time heading out into Skyrim’s massive open world. Like many others, I was surprised by how eager I was to revisit the story of the dragonborn, and how engrossed I was even though I’d seen it all before. I clocked a solid 45 hours or more (according to the Switch’s calculator), and I’m sure I’ll add many many more sometime down the road.

Moon Hunters and Crawl on Nintendo Switch

These have been on my wish list for quite a while now, but I finally got to delve into both over the New Year’s weekend. I played them with my sister (and just a tiny bit with my boyfriend), and we had a blast. We loved making legends in Moon Hunters, even though we couldn’t seem to live through very many days, and we really made the most of talking mad shit as we haunted one another in Crawl. We still don’t fully understand the overarching story Moon Hunters was trying to convey, and I’m still miffed about losing every round of Crawl to my little sister, but both were a 10/10 for us.


The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild on Nintendo Switch

We were all worried that Nintendo was about to announce a delay for the second DLC pack for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, but we were all of us pleasantly surprised by its sudden release early in December. Delighted as I was, I have to admit that I still haven’t even started the second DLC, as its release only inspired me to put down Skyrim and press on in my Master Mode playthrough. I still can’t wait to find out what’s in store, though, because dodging spoilers is starting to get a little too difficult.

Don’t Starve Together on Steam (PC and Mac)

As one of his many Christmas treats, my boyfriend got us both a copy of Don’t Starve Together, so that we might try (once again) to play something together. We’ve tried ARK: Survival Evolved and World of Warcraft in the past, but each game only stuck with one or other, never both. Enter Don’t Starve Together. It’s a multiplayer version of the famous survival game Don’t Starve, complete with menacing ghosts, and giant birds dreamed up in a style that I can only describe as “very Tim Burton.” The best part about it, though, is that it’s the first multiplayer game that has us both wanting to keep playing more. Now all we need to figure out is how to survive in the thing, and how to find the time when faced with polar opposite schedules. (If you’d like to try and play with us, add me on Steam!)

The Flame in the Flood and Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King on Nintendo Switch

Following a trend started by Don’t Starve Together, I’ve been dabbling in a little The Flame in the Flood. It’s got a pretty gorgeous soundtrack that really enhances the experience, but it’s pretty brutal, so I’m having a tough time getting into it, let alone feeling like I’m getting anywhere in it at all. Maybe it’s the crappy menu, and the brutal environment? Either way, I continue to try and find my groove. In the meantime, for a break, I’ve been turning to short bouts in Blossom Tales, a Link to the Past clone with a charm all its own. Normally, Zelda-inspired games find a way to let me down, but I’m really into this one. Its maps are gorgeous, and the story is actually really, really charming.

To Play

InnerSpace on Nintendo Switch (Jan. 16)

This game caught my eye first for its breathtaking graphics, and second for its stellar concept of exploring worlds that are inside-out. The trailer has incredible music, and it really gets me hyped every time I watch it. The game releases on January 16th for, like, every console, and I can’t wait to find out if it’s as good as it looks. Here’s hoping.

Oxenfree and The Sexy Brutale on Nintendo Switch (Both Out Now)

Two other games from my wish list that I’m finally able to afford, Oxenfree and The Sexy Brutale are waiting in line behind Blossom Tales as my next story-driven indie games. Oxenfree’s soundtrack (at least from its trailer) reminds me a ton of Stranger Things, and it has phenomenal reviews, so I’m sure I’m going to love it. Only thing I worry about is that it was originally a mobile device game, and the last time I played one of the on the Switch it was a huge let down (in case you’re wondering, it was Oceanhord: Monster of Uncharted Seas). The Sexy Brutale is published by the same company we ripped earlier last month for letting RiME on Nintendo Switch be a thing, Tequila Works. We’re a little cautious, but The Sexy Brutale has phenomenal reviews, and its gothic crime solver concept has me really intrigued, so we’ll see if it redeems the company’s initial Switch fumble.

What have you played recently? What are you playing? What’s got you hyped? Let us know in the comments below, or connect with us on Instagram and Twitter!

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