Oh dear God that’s enough

Okay, we’re up to like four rearrangings of the office now, and I’m done. I have to be done. Everything’s hooked up except for the supplementary lights (not really necessary any longer, unless I go back to full-time online again) and the microphone, and the microphone might be a bit of a challenge, since it needs to be positionable for both the computer and the TV.

Also, I was stupid enough to move everything around without repositioning the stuff hung on the wall first, and … fuck it, it’s gonna stay covered up by things for a while, because I’m annoyed and tired.

More later, possibly. I have Thoughts about the book I’m reading, but I probably ought to finish it before I write them up, and I’m only about halfway through the book. It’s probably not fair to write the piece just yet, but it’s all that’s in my head at the moment, so the only thing to do is to finish reading it.

In which I know nothing

Not to continue harping on this, but while it will tell you that it has been four days since I have uploaded anything to my YouTube channel (smash that subscribe button!), what that actually means is that I have acquired new equipment in the last few days and the complexity level of my setup has jumped a thousandfold. What was previously hit this button on your PlayStation and maybe make sure there’s not a fan running while you’re streaming has now grown to not only include my computer and a separate little piece of kit, but three different software packages, all of which appear to do the exact same thing but in just different enough ways that overlap isn’t helping, and I’m trying to decide which one I like the most sort of at a base level so that I can start learning how to use it. Because before, the stream didn’t look or sound all that great but there were only like four things that I could adjust, so at least I knew I was streaming at the highest quality I was going to be able to.

Now, there are fourteen million things I can adjust, and I’m also not really quite used to the tv yet– and it took a minute for me to realize that what was showing up on the television was actually not related to what was showing up on my computer monitor (in other words, if I adjust the brightness on the TV, that’s not changing anything on the stream) and so now I not only need to get the tv looking right for me but I need to adjust twelve thousand different things– some of which I’m not even sure what the settings do— so that it looks and sounds good on stream.

Meanwhile, turn off the fan while you’re streaming, you dolt is still something I haven’t quite internalized.

Anyway, what I’m doing is a lot of “adjust settings, upload a three-minute stream, delete three-minute stream” thing, and I’ll do my best to not talk about this too much more until the site is actually ready for prime time.

In which works are in progress

Still thrashing about trying to come up with a good name for the YouTube channel; there is now a temporary name and two streams up, both of which I’m slightly dissatisfied with for various reasons but I have Plans to fix that. That said, you should go there, and … smash? that subscribe button? I’m unsure of the proper verb. I think Subscribe buttons are smashed but I can’t be certain.

The bitmoji is probably temporary too, but I need some sort of temporary branding to go with my temporary channel name, so.

Why not just go with existing names? Well, I sort of want this (and probably my TikTok account as well, which is due for a rename) to be something I can cross-promote from here but still be something that isn’t a problem if my students discover it. I spent a moment thinking about just calling the channel Infinitefreetime Gaming, but I did an experimental Google on the phrase and it leads straight back here. Infinitegametime already exists and infiniteplaytime sounds like it’s something for small children. I could keep Luther Plays Games and just play it off as not wanting to use my real name– that is my grandfather’s name, after all, so it’s not as if I don’t have any connection to it– and so long as the word Siler doesn’t appear anywhere it ought to be fine. But I’d prefer a third choice. Possibly something making fun of my advanced age. Who the hell knows.

I spent six hours today in a Zoom meeting for my real job, which bounced back and forth between being useful and tedious depending on whether we were in breakout rooms with people from our school or listening to the presenters. Every alarm I have started going off early in the day, when one of the presenters called on someone to read the slide being displayed on the screen out loud, and then interrupted her after two sentences so that she could call on someone else to read more of it. I was not called on, but I hope y’all don’t think I’m bullshitting when I say that my mic and camera would have stayed off if I had been, and to hell with any social consequences. We’re adults. That shit borders on sin. I don’t know how the hell we’ve been conducting everygoddamnthing over Zoom for over a fucking year and people still think that kind of unbearable nonsense is the way to run a meeting.

I also got to put aside one of my projects for this summer; I’ve discovered that the earliest I can take my math test for my National Board certification is April, and as a lifelong procrastinator I’m sure as hell not going to start studying in June for a test I’m not taking for ten months. So that’s exciting. It gives me more time to plan for next year and work on other shit. It means when I do start studying I’ll have to do it during the school year, but something makes me think that’s not going to be all that much of a problem. We’ll see.

Today, in totally unnecessary

This setup, which I have no intention of making permanent, is what happens when I realize I have a 43″ TV in my bedroom that is not ever used– has been sitting there not even plugged in for months, in fact– and decide to see what happens when I try and use it as a secondary monitor. I have been tossing around the idea of moving the PS5 into the office so that I’m not monopolizing the TV that’s in there with my nonsense, and this won’t be the TV I use if I actually do that, but it got me wondering. My iMac is a 27″ 5K monitor, and the previous secondary monitor was mostly used for TweetDeck or for keeping videos running on while I did other stuff on the primary monitor. If I use this one, the resolution isn’t as good as the primary but the size overwhelms it, so … I don’t even know what the hell I’m doing right now.

Maybe I use this TV as a monitor and buy another one for the table behind me to play on.

God, I need a summer job.

An essential Returnal update

Y’all. I am having fun with this one.

Returnal has one major problem and one major annoyance. The major problem is the saving thing. It is absolutely crazy that there’s no way to take a break in the middle of a run. Go ahead and wipe everything after dying just like you’ve been doing; hell, set the save functionality at the Reconstructors and charge me Ether for them if you want to, but there’s got to be a way I can quit and go have dinner like a human being or, hell, go to bed on time without risking a run.

The major annoyance? Maybe not that major, I dunno, but Trophies are borked to hell and back, and for people who are known to be completists like me, that’s aggravating. I’ve beaten one particular boss three times and the trophy for beating him hasn’t popped yet. I assume it’ll show eventually, maybe after the next patch, but right now it’s pissing me off.

(If you don’t understand a single sentence of the last two paragraphs, forgive me; I don’t have any friends or even online acquaintances who share my video game habit so my only real option is to write on the blog. I can’t even get anyone to bite on Twitter. You’d think at least a handful of the nearly eleven thousand people who follow me there would be a gamer, but you’d be wrong.)

Beyond that, though, this is one of the most fun shooters I’ve ever played, right up there with Horizon: Zero Dawn, which is probably my favorite shooter of all time. The controls are just beautifully executed on a technical level, and this game shares some DNA with the Dark Souls series, in that at least so far everything has felt fair. Like, don’t get me wrong, everything and everything and everything wants to and is able to kill your ass, and absolutely will kill your ass, but the word “bullshit” has escaped my mouth very few times during some very long runs, although there’s been a serious difficulty spike in the most recent area I’ve gotten to. The weapons are all great; everything that I’ve used except for the starter pistol has been my favorite weapon for at least a little while, and the pistol’s not bad, it’s just … y’know, a pistol, which isn’t remotely as fun as, say, the weapon called the Rotgland Lobber.

I love my Rottie. Love it.

The story is another thing that is holding it back from my usual BEST THING EVAR enthusiasm, but it’s possible that I’ll feel differently once I finish the game. There was a hell of a mid-game twist, but they’re leaning heavy into what-the-hell-is-going-on-here and it remains to be seen whether I’ll think the story is coherent once I’m done with the game. I will, of course, update again at that time.

I know you don’t have a PS5, and don’t buy one just to play this, but if you get one, you should probably pick Returnal up with it.