Left at 8:30, home at 11:30. Out at 12:00, back at 2:30. Went up to Edwardsville's hippy food place where they sell good tea in bulk, getting decent quantities of lapsang souchong, english breakfast, and oolong teas, as well as a berry/sour cherry/rose hip herbal thing, candied ginger, and - less sexy - ground mustard. I'm drinking the herbal mix right now - it's good. No caffine, which could be a mistake, but maybe not. Anyway, if the converter's not reset after driving today, who knows what I'll do. It's probably fine. Find out tomorrow.
Yesterday, I got plenty tired of Fallout 4's antics or, like, a lack thereof. There's some DLC I should get that I haven't got - I care less about Far Harbor or the amusement park thing, and care more about making robots and stuff. My feelings about the latest installment of the game are complicated. Here's how I kind of feel about it; there are times when you can tell a game isn't done and everyone knows because stuff's just missing. Plot lines that are clearly designed to go somewhere that vanish, characters that seem to have a lot of narrative weight suddenly dissapear into the background or vanish entirely, um, mechanics or assets that point to stuff that's not present at all. Xenosaga's like that. Dragon Age II is notoriously rushed. I mean, this is stuff that gets patched or gets DLC, now, if the title is strong enough. I consider that to be sloppy, but it's also the cost of doing business in the gaming industry so, you know, whatever.
Fallout isn't that. It's a game that feels incomplete not by virtue of not being appropriately put together, but a game that can't live up to its potential due to time and resource issues, as well as by certain kinds of design goals. With the exception of bogland and a lot of dead trees (which, honestly, doesn't make sense - I understand it's aesthetic - but it made sense in the middle of a desert for 1, 2, and New Vegas, and feels weak against the theme of new growth and potential) it's the same aesthetic palatte as Fallout 3 and New Vegas. All the raiders are the same, nobody can be negotiated with, the build menus are cludgy and the designers left it to the community to create ad hoc guides and explainations rather than explain how it works, the quest lines are dull - and almost exclusively "go here and kill people, return." Dialogue stops being interesting immediately, and the trees just poles that go straight to one conclusion per party member. Levelling seems inconsequential and a lot of core gameplay elements are hidden behind level-buys, hidden behind stat caps which is a way to force the character to level up, and buy into the system. They're effectively speed bumps to the game that don't really need to be there. The piecemeal armor system is likewise terrifically awkward and time consuming without being particularly fun to mess with.
And so on.
Not being able to negotiate or talk my way through the wasteland seems like a big problem in a game about building communities. Like, I know why - it's harder to build and the designers just figured most people wouldn't care - what you functionally get is two games.
Game 1: Fallout 3-3.
Game 2: Fallout: Wasteland Minecraft.
They don't need each other, they're not tied to each other. Wasteland Minecraft edition is an overlay - it feels like something they're testing to see how well they can implement it in different games that use similar engines. (Which I hope they scrap, honestly, because I'm pretty tired of it. It felt interesting once, an entire major console ago.)
When it came out, someone wrote something kind of similar and I was so excited about Wasteland Minecraft, I totally disagreed at the time. But I was wrong and they were right, and I hope next time, Wasteland Minecraft is done correctly. There's still something really cool there and I'm almost certainly going to come back to Fallout to play it, just not now.