Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Ways Gaming Can Help When Dealing with Depression

When people feel down and depressed, there are many things they flock to to make themselves feel better. And most of us gamers, well, we go to what we love: Video games. And with the holidays upon us, many of us find ourselves feeling down in the dumps instead of happy and joyous. So this time of year seems like the perfect time to talk about what games one could play to uplift their spirits a bit.
Now everyone is different and everyone copes with depression differently than others, and that also rings true for gamers. Some of us play a game that we know through and through as that calms us, others prefer to take the violent route with hack n' slash types and fighting types, while there are also those of us who go to our sandbox-type of games, such as Animal Crossing, Harvest Moon, and The Sims. So with this knowledge, we have compiled a nice little list of possible games to play when you may be feeling down, that includes a little bit of everything for everyone.
First up let's take the violent-game route! Violent games help some release their frustrations, being able to unleash chaos in a game that, well, would just be illegal to do in the real world. Games that some may want to play when taking this route could be titles such as Grand Theft Auto and Saints Row, or hack n' slash titles such as Devil May Cry and God of War, or fighters like Mortal Kombat and Tekken. Playing games like this immerse you in a world where you can do as you want, and take out your frustrations on who (or what) ever you want. Recent games that you may want to use for this route includes Bloodborne and Mortal Kombat X.
The next type of gaming that one could use to help give them that boost from depression would be sandbox-type games. In these types of games, we literally control pretty much everything around us, which gives us a sense of control in our very hectic lives where we have control over very little. Games in this genre could include Minecraft (Creative Mode), Animal Crossing, The Sims, and technically even Disney Infinity. Being in control and playing a god-like role in the game, uplifts us, making us feel like we're doing something rather constructive in some way, all while having [almost] absolute control on this little world you've created. Some games to play when going this route would be Animal Crossing: New Leaf, The Sims 3 or 4, and of course, Minecraft.
A couple of other ways to cope with feeling down and being depressed are to play games you are familiar with, and games with vast worlds that you can just lose yourself in. Playing a game that you have perhaps beaten countless amounts of times or a game you held dear as a child can make you feel at ease. Since you know the game like the back of your hand, there is zero guess-work involved, and little to know thinking. It's also a nice way to relax when being stressed out. And with titles we cherished as a child, it reminds us of the simpler times in our lives, and that in itself can bring one comfort.
Another way is by playing open-world games with tons of terrain to wander through all while taking on side-quests or main missions, it's really up to you! Games that come to mind for this one would be games such as The Witcher III, Skyrim, The Reckoning: Kingdoms of Amalur, and even RPGs such as the Final Fantasy and Tales of franchises. Not only is it a whole new world for you to explore, but you also get to experience a great story along the way (that is until you get side-tracked by multiple side-quests...). I can't tell you how many times just wandering through the land of Skyrim helped improve my mood.
Just know that if you are feeling down, and are dealing with depression, you're not alone, especially during this holiday season. So if you're a gamer, grab a controller, pop in your favorite game, and relax. It'll get better. So what are some games that you use to help you when you're feeling down? Sound off in the comments below!

Friday, October 30, 2015

My Top 10 Scariest Video Games

Happy Halloween Eve err'body!
I know it's been sometime since I've written on this blog, and I do apologize :( I've been so busy lately I've barely had any time to take a breather let alone play a video game. I recently got my hands on The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes, so here in the near future once I play some more of it, you can expect and impressions blog from me about the game. Till then, I figured it'd be a good idea to dive into the Halloween festiveness and make a little Top 10 Scary Games list... in my opinion of course.
When I was younger I LOVED playing scary games, and games that had that major creep factor. Since I've gotten older and have had my anxiety get more and more severe over the years, it's hard to play a scary game without popping a xanax first... sad, right? Anywho, I'm here to talk about the scary games I have played in the past, and then hope to hear from you readers out there about what scary games you've played. So let's get this show on the road!

**DISCLAIMER: Keep in mind this list based on scary games that I have personally played and experienced, and are in no particular order**

1. Resident Evil:
One of the first horror games that I actually played, and I played it back when it originally released on the original PlayStation. The atmosphere is eerie, and automatically puts you on the edge of your seat as anything could jump out at anytime. So many things to scare the ever living crap outta you, but I think what got me the most was the fact that I didn't know to burn the zombies' bodies after I killed them... as they would become this super fast zombie of death that would chase you down...I think next in line would be those damn Hunters!

2. Resident Evil 3: Nemesis
What more needs to be said other than the name 'Nemesis'? I mean, if you've played this game, you'll know what I mean... Just sneaking around minding your own business when all the sudden this giant mutant thing just starts busting through walls and tries to grab you and, well, kill you. Just the fact that you never know when he'll pop out is terrifying all on its own.

3. Haunting Grounds
One of the first games I got for my PS2... A game that very few have heard of, but is definitely something you should check out. It's more of the survival horror genre, where you survive by running and hiding, and hoping to god you don't get found by the many predators that are lurking around. The only weapon you have at your defense is a white wolf that you have come to befriend in the game. The game is chilling and full of jump-scares and hiding for your life... You'll love it.

4. Clock Tower 3
I've never played any of the other Clock Tower games, only this one, and this one had me squealing like a little girl. Go back into another era of time, and deal with an axe murderer chasing after you all while calling out to you in a creepy, gravely voice saying "Alyssa... where are you?!" This guy, much like Nemesis, would pop out of nowhere and chase you down until you were able to hide successfully. But keep in mind, if you reuse the same hiding spots too many times, he'll figure it out and yank you right out of your sanctuary...

5. Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem (creep factor)
Now to me, this game wasn't scary per say, but it had more of a creep factor and a whole lot of "What the f***?!" This game preyed on your mental state more than anything, even going as far as switching the game's volume from high to low, and even punking you by faking a save error on your GameCube's memory card! It's a shame this game didn't get more recognition than it did, but it is definitely one you should not miss out on.

6 .Fatal Frame series
I couldn't pick one particular game from this series as all of them have scared the ever-living crap out of me ever since I was younger. Using a camera to defeat and trap evil spirits? Where do I sign up?! Also, the lore behind it is pretty awesome, as in Japanese myth they actually believe that cameras can capture your soul...

7. The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask (creep factor)
Now this game was not even made with the intent to be scary, it's a Zelda games for Pete's sake, but this game was so creepy, it gave me many a goosebump as a child playing this on my N64. The setting of the game was eerie from the very start, with more and more creepy things happening. Turning the dying and/or dead into mask for you to wear, to a creepy mummy in the canyon, to Majora's Mask itself. Although this game may not scare you, it will definitely have you scratching you head and asking "Why, Nintendo, Whyyyyy?!"

8. Silent Hill series
Once again just like with the Fatal Frame series, I couldn't pick a specific one as all of them had their super scary elements, most of which featuring Pyramid Head, a thing of nightmares. Eerily walking around with nothing more than a handgun or a 2x4 as your weaponand a flashlight if your lucky all while battling creatures of undetermined origin? Yeah... Don't play this in a dark room, boys and girls.

9. Outlast
Okay, so I never actually finished this game, and that right there says it all. Haunted mental institution where these deformed god-knows-what's come chasing after you, and ultimately find you and brutally kill you. Like, hiding is so hard in this game, as they will hunt you down, the A.I. is super intelligent in this game and makes for quite a challenge. Have you played and finished this game? If so, I commend you.

10. Slender: The Eight Pages
I downloaded this game for free, and I'm glad I did... for free. Being a huge fan of the Slenderman legends, I had to check it out. There is nothing creepier than being a forest by yourself in first-person view with nothing more than a flashlight, but if you use your flashlight too much, he will find you... You'll know good ol' Slendy is near by as you will begin to hear static, after that, if he corners you, you're done for.

What games have you played that have scared the life out of you? What games would you recommend that I should check out? Let's chat in the comments below!!!

Saturday, June 13, 2015

I Got Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited - Buh-bye, Life!

It's no secret that I'm a huge Elder Scrolls fan. I still play Skyrim to this day, and it never gets old. So you could only imagine how happy I was when I heard about Elder Scrolls Online. Granted, I'm not much of a PC gamer, so I held off an waited for it to come out on the PlayStation 4. I was so excited to play it as soon as I could, but to my dismay I came across a thread online that talked about how the North American servers were too congested and not working, so I figured, "You know what, I'll just wait, that way I can play it with no issues!" I waited a day or two later to put it in the PS4 and immerse myself into the Elder Scrolls universe all over again. I slowly unwrapped the game, eager to play it and waste my life away. I placed it into my PS4, and waited for the prompt to install it into my system... until my dear PS4 decided to inform that I would need at least 21GB to install the game... I adore PlayStation Plus...but what it does to my hard drive is horrid. So I only had one choice: I needed a bigger hard drive.  
Off to Best Buy it was to get an external to save all of my data onto, and to get a new internal hard drive for my PS4. I got my Sony baby a nice 2TB hard drive, which should be more than enough for Elder Scrolls Online and my future PS Plus PS4 games. Hey, go big or go home, right? 
After the time consuming process of backing up save and game data, and replacing my hard drive, I was finally able to play my game! I went through the process of creating my character, a High Elf of course, and started my journey into the very depths of Tamriel. 
Off the bat, you see just how glorious the graphics are! After grinding on Skyrim for the past 3 years and being accustomed to its graphics, this was spectacular. I played through the first part of the game, my escape from Soul Shriven in Coldharbour. After escaping from there, and making my way to another area in the game, I truly came to realize just how majestic these graphics were. There is more detail than you could imagine on this game! I stepped away for a brief moment to make myself some lunch, and I heard a loud crash of thunder... I almost thought it was happening outside, until I glanced at the television and saw rain pouring down and lightning flashing on the screen! This game is pretty awesome, and I'm barely just out of the shallow end of the pool that is Elder Scrolls Online... I can't wait to see what transpires in the deeper ends of the hypothetical ESO pool! 
As I journey further, I will keep you posted on my journey, much as I do with my Adventures in Skyrim blog... only... this is my Adventures in Tamriel Unlimited!! We're about to see just how 'unlimited' it truly is! 
~.::Peace, Love, & Video Games::.~

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Majora's Mask 3D Is Soon to Release - A Stroll Down Gamer Memory Lane

With the remake for Majora's Mask right around the corner (In two days!!!!! *squees*), I only thought it'd be proper to pay homage to one of the games that made my childhood and helped swerve me in the right direction to become a core gamer, game blogger, and gamer journalist.
I received my Nintendo 64 when I was around 9 or 10 (The system released back in 1996) and the first games I got for it was Super Mario 64 and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Before then, I had already had a taste for the Legend of Zelda titles as I had played the NES original and A Link to the Past on the SNES previously. Ocarina of Time was like a whole new experience for me in gaming, while still being similar to it's predecessors. Ocarina of Time was the first 3D Zelda game, and it did not disappoint. So imagine my thoughts when Majora's Mask released. OH MY GOD. Still to this day I hail Majora's Mask as one of the best Zelda games that has been released. It's like the cult favorite of the series, either you hate it, or you love it - For me, it was the latter of the two.
It basically picked up where Ocarina o Time left off, where Zelda returned Link to his childhood. The game is dark, yet bright and hopeful at the same time, something few games can pull off. And I know many out there that played it and did not like it was because of the three-day time frame that was implemented. For me, that was something that added appeal to me. It made it more edgy, making the player more anxious in how they played, leaving sweat upon your brow as you hoped and prayed you'd finish this dungeon before your three days were up and you have to revert back to the dawn of the first day. I LOVED IT! It's a mechanic that has never been implemented in another Zelda title since.
And all of the masks you could many masks!!! That was also a very fun element that added whimsy and challenge to the game. I of course completed the game with every mask I could find, because when I play a Zelda game, I go the distance and do everything there is possible to do in the game.
Just talking about this game gets me super hyped for it's remake for the Nintendo 3DS. I know they made some changes to the game, but being the hardcore Legend of Zelda fan that I am, I just hope they didn't make it easier or dumb it down in any way. I love the challenge of all the puzzles and the craziness...I just hope that 'challenge' is still there in the 3DS version.
Expect a full-on review of the 3DS remake from me in due time, where in the review I will be comparing it to the original, and laying out the pros and cons.
Till next time, lovelies~
Nightingale, out!

.::Peace, Love, & Video Games::.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Checking In & Catching Up

Hello gamers gals & guys! It's been quite sometime since I've posted here in my blog. When you're busy like I am and you're mostly on the computer for work, once you're done, you don't want to sit there any longer! Anywaaaaaaays...
So it's a busy time of year, and Christmas is seriously right around the corner. Where has this year gone? x_x I swear 2014 just started. It's true, time does go faster as you get older. Perhaps for me it's the combination of having kids, babysitting, catching up on crafts to sell, and work that makes my days just dwindle away so quickly. Like, I wake up around 6am, and before I know it, the sun is already setting. That being the case, my gaming time has become something scarce that I treasure oh so much. I've recently gotten back into Skyrim, and with that began a new blog branch entitled "Nightingale's Adventures in Skyrim", where I document my many travels on my second play-through of the game. It's a fun little project for me to focus on when regular life and work becomes a tad too much to bear.
I'm going to try to game on my Vita a bit more, as I just got some games all thanks to their holiday sale. I purchased Child of Light, Don't Starve: Giant Edition, and Flower all for under $25 - You can't beat that! I need to get more into my portable and PC gaming. When I have time to game, I just always reach for my PS3 or Wii U...sometimes even my Xbox 360 or Retron III. I have Steam on my PC, with a lot of games to play, but as I stated earlier, once you've sat at your desk working all this time, you don't want to sit at it longer (or maybe I just need a more comfy chair...). And I have both a Vita Slim and 3DS XL, both of which I love dearly, but pick up seldom. Oh man how I miss the good ol' days of being carefree and gaming all night long <3.
So how was your year? Was it all you hoped it'd be? Did it suck? Mine was meh...but you know what? It is what it is, and life would not be flowing the way it is if the past were any different. And let me tell you this: If you're feeling down (as I know most of us do during the holiday season), just be thankful you are here, alive and breathing. Life may not be what you want it to be, but remember that everything happens for a reason, and you may not see it now, but you will one day. You're a strong human being, who can endure more than you know. Just keep your chin up, eh? I will if you will ;)
And with that tidbit of inspirational speak, I leave you. Nightingale out!

~Peace, Love, & Video Games~
.::Nightingale Silva::.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Catching Up To Do!

It's been quite some time since I've written a blog post. I really need to stay on top of this more! I've recently become Managing Editor over at Gaming Precision, so I've been pretty busy busy. All the writing I do nowadays is work related. My poetry and story writing has taken a backseat in life, just as it seems this blog has as well.
I've dived deeper into my retro gaming obsession as of late. I bought a Retron 3, and along with it got me some third-party controllers, because frankly the two that come with it are the worst controllers to ever exist. I also got The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, as the Retron 3 plays SNES, NES, and Sega Genesis games. I also got Crystalis, one of my all-time favorite titles for the NES. I still need to find time to sit back and savor one of those titles...with everything I do in my daily life, I hardly have time. It's funny, I make extra money to buy games and fund my habit, yet I'm so busy making the extra money to fund my habit, that I don't have time to even relish in my habit! Gotta love double-edged swords like that.
I've also been playing FFX/X-2 HD Remaster, which is utterly beautiful in my opinion....colors are brighter, lines sharper, I love it! I've also been playing around with the original Final Fantasy on my PSP Go...When I get a chance, that is!

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

As This Year Ends

Well, 2013 is coming to its end tonight. What an awesome year it was for me and for the gaming world. So many incredible games came out this year, along with the latest in home gaming consoles, Microsoft's XBOX One and Sony's PlayStation 4. Though I have yet to get my hands on either one, they do play a part in my near future. I prefer to wait and make sure all the bugs are all worked out. It's just so much easier. Also, all of the awesome games don't even come out until next year anyway. This year I enjoyed many great games, Pokemon X, The Legend of Zelda: Wind Water HD, The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, Super Mario 3D World, The Last of Us, Beyond: Two Souls, DmC, Diablo 3 for console, The Elder Scrolls Online Beta, Tomb Raider, and so many more that I just can't think of at the moment! This year in gaming was a great one, and I cannot wait to see what the future holds for us gamers and gamerettes. Peace, love & video games, my dears, be safe and have a happy new year!!!