Updates: Looking ahead to 2016

Happy New Year! I hope this new year finds you all in good health and good spirits! As per tradition, I wanted to take a moment to give everyone an update on the status of the blog.  2015 saw RetroSensei.net dominated mostly by two things, my Final Fantasy playthrough initiative and Star Wars. Yes, it has taken me a whole year to play through and discuss Final Fantasy IX-XIII, which doesn’t sound like much progress, but in reality that’s a total of eight games, one of which is an MMO with multiple expansions. Plus…. it’s MY blog so I can do what I want, according to my own timetable   😛

This year will see my big Final Fantasy push come to a close within the first few months. I’m currently playing through Lightning Returns. Once that’s finished, I’ll provide some thoughts on XIV (I game I play nearly every day). The backlog will finish out with Dissidia and Type-0. So once I’m all caught up with the series, it will be about time for XV to drop. I am looking very forward to being able to play and review XV while it’s still fresh.

Gamewise, once the Final Fantasy stuff is out of the way, I’ll resuming my regular schedule by playing through a number of PS1 titles. This will be followed by Gameboy Color, N64, the onward to some of the PC games from the turn of the century, etc. Believe it or not, I really do have a plan… it’s just as twisted an convoluted as my cluttered mind.  Essentially, this site serves and both a trip down memory lane for me (in terms of gaming), as well as a great project to help me plow through the endless backlog that many of us gamers find ourselves with. At the rate I’m going, I can foresee me clearing the out the cobwebs on nearly everything I want to play within the next 3 years.

I hope those of you that read this blog regularly enjoy this journey with me. I do see site analytics and while this site is not a traffic hog, it does see a lot of regular activity. There’s a handful of what seem like steady readers. I don’t know if they are silent friends or strangers interested in what I’m doing, but they are there and I hope they like what they see. The rest of the traffic on this site is often driven from search engine results. People looking for reviews on certain games, etc.

2015 saw both the birth and hiatus of the RetroSensei Podcast. I’d really like to be able to give a return date, but that’s still up in the air. Running a podcast is pricier than you may think. It’s not break-the-bank expensive, but if you want to do it right, there are costs involved. For me, this ended up being close to $20 a month. I know that doesn’t sound like much, but as I mentioned before, due to unforeseen home repairs I found myself in a position to save every dollar I could manage.  For those interested, the repairs are going well. The kitchen floor has been repaired/replaced. This leaves me with some remaining plumbing work, and the installation of a new septic system. This is a several thousand dollar job, but one I hope to complete within the coming months. My biggest obstacle right now is the weather. It has rained here for what seems like two months straight. So at this point we are waiting for the ground to dry out and toughen back up before we start digging. — In a nutshell, once the time is right to relaunch the podcast, I will make sure everyone knows.

Christmas was good in terms of gaming this year. My kids are both full-fledged gamers now. My oldest son has actually discovered the world of Steam. He’s spent the last few weeks enjoying games like Quake and Half-Life. The two of us have even played a few Deathmatch rounds together. My youngest, is still very much a junior gamer. He’s Lego and Mindcraft obsessed.

That’s the status of things currently. As typical for me, I have a weeks vacation that I take every January. During that time, I plan to finish up the last FFXIII game. So I hope to have all my Final Fantasy posts out of the way by the beginning of March. Once this is done, things will begin to be a lot more diverse. So stay tuned and have a happy new year!

 

Updates: Fall 2015

Hello readers. I wanted to take a few moments to provide some updates regarding that status of this little blog of mine.

First, I’m sad to announce a temporary hiatus in regards to the RetroSensei Podcast. Recently, I experienced some plumbing problems in my home that did great damage to a large part of my kitchen floor. As a result, I now face what will likely be a pretty expensive repair bill. Luckily, insurance will cover a big part of it, but I do expect to have some out of pocket expenses. As a result, I’m tightening up the household budget and eliminating any extra expenses. As some of you probably know, to host a podcast there are fees involved. My monthly host currently charges about $17 a month for the plan I needed. While I know that $17 doesn’t sound like a lot of money, every bit counts. So the decision was made to put the podcast on hold until this whole fiasco is sorted out.

That being said, the monthly cost of running this site is considerably less, and that will go untouched. So have no fear, the blog is not going anywhere! Plus, the podcast will return at some point. In the meantime, I’ll be posting an archive of the old episodes in the very near future.

So, what else is going on? Well, as far as game reviews go, I’m continuing with my Final Fantasy playthrough. I plan to be caught up on my reviews just in time for the release of XV. Also, it’s now October… that means it’s also time for some scary games. I don’t intend on a month-long extravaganza like I had last year. But stay tuned, I promise to deliver some spooky game reviews as always.

 

Announcing the RetroSensei Podcast!

retroPClogo

The time has come to announce that the first episode of the RetroSensei Podcast is now available for download for your favorite podcast directory. You can also subscribe to the feed directly at:  http://retrosensei.libsyn.com/rss

This first episode features a discussion between the RetroSensei and Short (from AbilityPowered.com) as they discuss all the yummy news from E3 2015.

Please be sure to submit a review on iTunes and share any questions comments by email:   Chris (at) retrosensei.net

Gilgamesh’s Tavern

**UPDATE**
Due to my general dissatisfaction with the game, I cancelled the podcast several months after the initial launch.***

As mentioned in a previous post, I’ve been a lifelong fan of the Wizardry franchise. In fact, writing that post had me pining for the glory days of Wizardry again. So much so, that I began researching the upcoming Wizardry Online game rather heavily. I must say, I’m very impressed with what I’m seeing. My love for Japan has been established on this site, so it’s certainly no secret. So has my love for the fantasy genre and dungeon-crawling type of adventures. The old Wizardry games were rooted very much in the classic Dungeons & Dragons vein of “fantasy gaming”. Which is perhaps why I found them so appealing.

As time went on and Wizardry declined in popularity, Final Fantasy seemed to fill both of these slots. Japanese style art direction, with a swords and sorcery element.I was hooked. Over time, Final Fantasy evolved into it’s own genre. I’d call it high-fantasy. While I still love the series, it’s easy to say that it is no longer rooted in the classic “knights and dragons” western ideal of fantasy gaming. In short, there is little to no Dungeons and Dragons left in Final Fantasy.

The Japanese takeover of Wizardry, has not followed on Square-Enix’s heels however. If anything, the Japanese developers of Wizardry are very careful to stay true to the origins that inspired the original Wizardry games, and from what I’ve seen, this has carried over to Wizardry Online.

This excitement has lead me to undertake a new project. I’d like to announce the beginning of both my first-ever podcast, and the first English language Wizardry Online podcast: Gilgamesh’s Tavern.

The first episode is already available on iTunes, with new episodes coming bi-weekly. I felt that, being a first-time podcaster, I needed something big to give myself a little credibility. Therefor, I sought out one of the original creators of Wizardry, Robert Woodhead and conducted a 30 minute interview about the origins of the game, and his thoughts and memories of Wizardry over the years.

I hope that over time, as Wizardry Online is released and grows in popularity, my podcast becomes one of the first place Wiz Online fans turn for news and community.

Links to the show in iTunes are provided below:

 

With that being said, now that the podcast project has been launched, I will again be able to update this blog with much for frequency and begin building a nice site for those you out there that share my passions.