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  2. I've experienced this twice... I believe it has influenced my material approach to life. The first time, I didn't have a computer. Slept on the floor pretty much. I was very bare. I bought a $100 computer later on. I bought maybe 2 new sweaters. I didn't have much because I was living in a corner of a room. So getting material was not an option for me. The 2nd time was because of a job offer. I came up with my computer, clothing and some documents. I accumulated a lot of stuff I think. Got a shelf, drawer, got a free desk. I think these are essentials though. Some things that are not essential are some cooking tools that I wanted and ended up not using. Got a small sandwich grill and a pressure cooker I'm not using. Brought my bike but ended up not using it much. I have 2 bikes now, looking to sell one of them. Because I have some spending money, I've been buying stuff off Amazon only. Like new shoes, clothes, containers. I think I went overboard with some things. I think a number of other things affected my material approach. When I didn't have money, I save things up in case I need it another time. I wanted a lot of stuff. When I got a job, and was able to spend on things, I did not start to hoard or collect thing. But I tried many things that can help my life a little. Like running, jogging clothes. Some terry cloth towels for cleaning, an air filter, bicycle equipment, a fan, etc. I do grow some plants, and currently at 6 potted plants in my room. I often get the urge to get more, but due to space and more work needed for care, I stayed firm at 6 for a while now. The other material thing that's probably bad is my computer. I got two good computer. I rpobably don't need a $500 SSD, $800 graphics card, $800 CPU+motherboard... Maybe went overboard... I think I got an Xboxone at $500 when it first came out. I learned to not buy consoles ever again. I guess another thing that helped me on not hoarding is... I think I might move around a lot. It sucks having a lot of furniture. Room size, storage space accounts for how much material I accumulate. Also, I live in a shared house - so I try not to have too many value things. If they steal my bed, OK. Steal my clothes? OK I got ugly clothing. Steal my plants? I'd be sad. Wait, I have a pretty nice jacket I wouldn't want anyone to steal actually. Some valuebles I left at my parents place are some magic/yugioh cards. Got a Diablo 3 collector's edition box. I secured these things so they don't get thrown out. If I ever get a house of my own, I'd store these things in it of course.
  3. I moved because I wasn't happy with life... Had zero idea what I did want to do in life and wanted a year away to just enjoy myself, travel and maybe come up with some plan I would also say that I'm not sure me cutting my gaming collection etc was something that I would have really benefited from if I still lived in the UK so not sure if it would apply to you. It's just that it was somewhat necessary to do in this situation, but I don't regret having to do.
  4. I hadn't considered the opposite(ish) approach. My saturation came at a young age, having access to both the family TV and my brother's NES for about as far back as I can remember. I can't remember how old I was when I got my own TV. What I do remember more clearly is that I split my time between video games, playing outside (bike riding, hanging out as kids do, wandering around a nearby park, and jumping on a trampoline), and then later cutting back on video game time once I reached my teenage years and instead pouring that time into online ventures. For me, having a computer was something that came much later, but my fixation on it came from... I'm not really sure what caused me to focus so much time and energy into it. I'm not sure if I get a limited amount of junk mail or have a limited number of records I need to keep, but these things usually only eat up a few minutes each day. Perhaps I'm treating them too lightly, and I haven't actively done anything to remove them from my life, but in the context of where my head was at in posting this thread I've never focused on them beyond those moments I spend sorting through and throwing them out. They don't hold my attention for any longer than they have to. Perhaps our age difference has something to do with it? I'm in my late twenties, and I forget if you're five or ten years older than me. (Then again, my brother has a decade on me, and I don't think he has too much more of a problem with this than I do, so maybe it's regional?) With the transition from paper to digital advertising, there might be greater forces at work there.
  5. I grew up almost entirely without video games. We weren't exactly poor, but my parents bought more house than Dad's peers, so several years I was eating bread with pizza sauce and leftovers, watching a black and white TV with a coat hanger for an antenna (the family TV was usually off limits), and reading the encyclopedia because it was more interesting than my parents' book selection at that age. When I got access to the family TV, I spent as much time as I could watching it. It's not quite the asceticism you're speaking of, but in retrospect, I found the limited access made it too much of a focus. TV became precious, and when finally the restrictions were gone, I spent too much time watching TV, playing games, etc. Over the years, I reached a saturation point where I realized the TV would get by just fine without me, and I was not really enjoying a lot of the games I was playing. Right now, I'm far from an ascetic lifestyle - I have a TV, 2 computers, a smartphone, 2 consoles (up from 0 a couple years ago), but I find it only becomes a focal point if I have something specific I want out of it. The TV only gets turned on if I want to do something - watch a new movie, watch a TV series I'm feeling nostalgic about, etc. The Wii, despite several games I haven't touched hasn't been turned on in months. On the other hand, the computer and smartphone are my links to the world. I do everything through them, and enjoy the lack of clutter they provide. Now, a dumb question for you - Electronics have never cluttered my life. Government, business and busybodies have. What are you doing that let you live your ascetic lifestyle without massive piles of paper when you come home? I separated it out one month and the stack of garbage that was pure advertisement was more than 2 13 gallon trash cans could hold, the mix of bills, tax information, "keep for your records" documents, and other such garbage was about a third of another 13 gallon trash can, and that was before getting into the things I had carelessly gotten myself into (eg. donating to charities). Incidentally, never donate to charities unless you can do it anonymously. They all abuse your contact information.
  6. What prompted the move to Japan? It's interesting to hear that you never finished building your PC, and it's fascinating hearing that you don't regret cutting out a lot of your gaming collection/etc. That's the kind of thing I was hoping to hear about. I had never really thought of myself as materialistic while growing up, and I always tried to keep a good sense of which things were essential to me (the Mega Man painting Nebiros gave me, Yu-Gi-Oh! playmats, dance notes, and a small handful of other more sentimental things), but traveling without them made me realize how distracting so many of them were just by being around me all of the time. I don't know that I'm going for any kind of brilliant insight or particular direction. The fact that you've become more social is worthwhile in its own right, especially because that's one of the reasons that's prompting me to pack light when I move.
  7. I guess I've been in a similar situation. I moved to Japan two and a half months ago and only brought my phone/ps4 and a few pc components. (Along with clothes etc..) That might still sound like a lot, but I never actually finished building my pc here as I originally planned. Considering that before I came, that was almost solely my life, with all my media, it's been a big change. Plus my previous room was filled with 4 consoles, a huge collection of games, a bunch of books, a guitar and my pc. I honestly doubt I'd have ever got rid of them had I not moved to the other side of the world, but now that I have I don't regret it at all. After arriving I started going out a lot more, and had more time to think about life in the first month and a half. Since then though, my ps4 has just sort of become a replacement pc and I've fallen back into my old patterns somewhat. I'm still being more social than before coming here, but it's still not enough honestly. Self reflection is all but gone. I guess that's the end for this particular vaguely coherent ramble. I don't really have any good way to tie it up.
  8. I got back from a two week trip to Utah on Monday, and similarly to my traveling last summer, I traveled light, only really having my phone for entertainment. I'm currently gearing up to relocate in that direction, and I'm finding myself planning to travel light, computer and phone being essentially the only forms of entertainment that I'll be taking with me. What I found interesting last summer was how much more easily I was able to concentrate and contemplate the circumstances of my life. I've never been the "connect with nature" type that experiences something similar, but here I did, and I found the focus incredibly valuable. Most of you probably know that I grew up as a gamer and spending much of my teenage years online. It feels surreal to look around my room now, to look over my bookshelves filled with movies/shows/books/games, and to both know that I don't care for many of them and want to strip them away (at least in presence: I still want to own them). I'd like to ask, how many others here have experienced something in this vein or another, and has it influenced your material approach to life?
  9. Earlier
  10. Played Codenames: Deep Undercover with my cousins. It was nice to have a "dirty" card game (a la Cards Against Humanity) that was competitively charged via teams. Still loses or to Joking Hazard in my book, though.
  11. Just want to let you guys know I'll be out of town for a couple of weeks, so mobile-only access in the meanwhile.

  12. That is awesome. And, yes, it works for those of us who don't put our faces in books.
  13. I finally got to play BatHotH a month or so back. The round went pretty quickly, and unfortunately one of us had to leave and I had plans to go dancing, so we didn't get to make a second round. I didn't really manage to develop an opinion one way or the other about it. Traj, what kinds of things change with Legacy? Also, apparently I didn't mention either of these points earlier... I backed the Kickstarter for Deep Madness. Mostly because I love me some miniatures in my games, and of course the Lovecraftian theme gets me. Did anyone else back it? Lastly, Joking Hazard is amazing. It's like a better Cards Against Humanity. Not sure if this picture will hotlink to people who aren't friended with me on Facebook, but...
  14. I remembered that you guys were able to meet up, but I'd never heard that part of the story. Props to Khaled.
  15. Star, myself, and a mutual friend got through Pandemic: Legacy in the space of a month, playing for about 8 hours every Wednesday. We did poorly, if you go by the score at the end, but we also needlessly handicapped ourselves by playing (or attempting to play) the same characters every time, ignoring the changing landscape. We basically turned it into a mini-RPG and had a blast anyway. Personally, I really like the idea of legacy games. For those who don't know, a legacy game is a game that changes each time you play it - changing rules, adding rules, taking away rules, ripping up cards, adding stickers to the game board, adding stickers to cards, et cetera; actual physical changes to the game itself. The end result means it's hard to play the same game twice, but the fact that the game customizes and changes itself along with the players playing it makes it really fascinating to me as a game genre. I'm looking to pick up Gloomhaven next (Star, the mutual, and myself tend to gravitate towards co-operative games).
  16. Khaled and I met in person in Montreal in 2007, I think. He coached me through asking someone out for the first time.
  17. While I enjoyed Smallville's interpretation of the Green Arrow, I prefer DC's heroes to exist in their own individual bubbles. It has something to do with how they feel larger than life, and the power discrepancies between, say, Superman and Green Arrow really force the suspension of disbelief. As opposed to Marvel where most of the characters are on the same level. So what kept you from enjoying Game of Thrones? I take it that the gore was part of the problem? Smallville definitely dove headfirst into that lake. Sometimes it was fine when it was done from the comic book angle (so to speak), but it became a problem as the writers refused to let Clark grow as a character, dragged on and on with the love triangle with Lana (particularly in seasons five and six), and did nothing relevant whatsoever with Kara in season seven. This has been a big part of my issue with The Flash, especially this year with the unnecessary change to Caitlin via Flashpoint. For me, I tend to analyze the shows I enjoy. I have a friend who also posts his critical thoughts on Facebook pretty regularly, so I bounce few ideas around with him. There are very few shows that I'll "turn off my brain" for, and nearly all of them are comedy.
  18. I'm not familiar with the smallville comics... I figured the direction into a team oriented show follows superman's story in the comics, so it was natural. I did like the green arrow here and how they teamed up. It's kind of hard to pinpoint what is lacking, but maybe if I think about some of the things I enjoyed or kept me watching... I generally like shows where it doesn't feel like things are being dragged on. I think every episode should have a key moment, or should be somewhat purposeful to drive the story. And these moments should be interesting and not always predictable, as long as it fits the character of course. Also, for some reason I feel like I can detect a set-up, or a plot device... which makes things predictable and when I keep seeing these things, its less exciting. I don't mean to say being able to predict things is bad, but there should be a good balance between 1) knowing something turned out as you hoped and 2) finding out its not always turning out as you thought. Basically, it's sometimes fun being on edge because the show is telling you, anything can happen. That's something Games of Throne does well, because the character that you like, might be gone anytime. There's something in the struggle that makes me more invested into not missing a scene or episode. I enjoy good character interactions. I think people call it chemistry? Sometimes it's chemistry, and sometimes it's just very different kind of characters, interacting with each other in the most interesting ways. Strong characters are characters that you can understand and predict their behaviors the more you watch. Putting them against an unknown or another strong character that makes for a very unpredictable outcome or conversation is fun. Chemistry however... there's some sort of attraction between characters that it doesn't matter if it's predictable or not, you just like seeing them interact like that. I tend to keep watching if I like certain characters. Kind of embarrassing, but I tend to lean toward some romantic aspects of shows that have strong chemistry and strong characters. Respecting the characters... I think it is something that was a turn-off on Smallville. I think some of these characters were great, but things dragged on, and the characters got used too much in too many different ways. I think characters can degrade if you use them in awkward ways. This is sometimes shown as changing a character so much for the sake of an episode, then fixing them at the end. Anyways, this is just rambling about quality-- I would probably watch a more philosophical show I guess. Maybe a horror/mystery show that's not too much gore? I sometimes watch ghost shows so that I can actually feel scared. I watched too much drama in the past, so that won't work. Something that breaks the mold, or something that is not too politically correct could be interesting. Something with careful dialogue, -- It's hard to describe, maybe I just want to watch a masterpiece of a show, that has a strong message, intent, idea, philosophy, behind it. I tend to like sci-fi because I always find situations I never thought about, and it's a fun idea. Stranger Things had something familiar, but it was good at how it was told. Maybe I just watched too many things and just got desensitized... I remember I got so bored that I watched Gordon Ramsey a lot since I liked the shock factor when talked down people. I guess I do like comedy a lot too. Are you watching these shows and analyzing them? Does analyzing shows make it any less enjoyable... I feel in some way I'm thinking too much into things.
  19. I've been hearing a bit more of the accusations against reality TV shows recently, because I've watched a few of the survivalist shows. While interesting at a glance, there's not a lot of appeal there for me in general. You need fire to survive. Don't suck at building a shelter. Hunting is about tools and luck. It creates an interesting vision of the past, and it does make it abundantly clear why the guarantee of food (via farming) probably led to civilization. I need to put Smallville onto my "need to rewatch" list. It's been at least a few years since I last went through the first six seasons. You're familiar with the Smallville Season 11 comic, yes? They certainly took advantage of the comic medium for storytelling, making it a bit more Justice League (which was kind of the direction the show had tried to go in several times anyway). That said, I kind of have to place most (if not all) of the CW shows above Smallville for storytelling. Nostalgia definitely makes me rank Smallville above all but Arrow and maybe The Flash, but I feel like Smallville only really beats Supergirl outright (mostly due to the sheer lack of direction in Supergirl, whereas Smallville was always fun). What are you looking for in a show right now? Or what's been lacking in the shows you've been watching?
  20. I recently watched some survivor some months ago... it was something like smart people vs physically good people. And then after that it was like millennials vs baby boomers or something like that. Without evidence, I have high suspicion that the Survivor series takes an impromptu approach into faking scenarios and game-play, or at least a good part of it to appeal to viewers. I know there's always some amount of meddling for a game show to put the show on a path that's interesting and rake in the ratings. At some point during these seasons, I was a little doubtful of how entertaining these people appear to be. Then I sort dropped off the millennials season since I felt the portrayal of millennials and the adults was kind of sad. I wasn't able to get into any CW shows... the last show I watched on there was Smallville, and that was mostly out seeing how things end and not enjoyment. I sort of lost faith in these kind of shows after that. I really liked some of the characters in smallville, but everything fell apart when Lex went away and ideas were reaching for almost 10 years. I heard Game of Thrones was good, but I couldn't even latch onto that. I watched Stranger Things since I kind of liked the dark and mysterious tone that I haven't seen much. I thought it was Okay. Watched it in a day though...
  21. Has anyone else been disappointed by this year of television? Designated Survivor has been a standout success in an otherwise bleak year. I can't say enough good things about the show, especially given the timing of a political show about a decent President. I can't recommend it enough. Girl Meets World ended with a whimper, and the nostalgia (and joke of both Morgans in the finale) wasn't anywhere near enough to salvage anything. There aren't any other spiritual successors that I care about, but I wonder if any of them are doing better. Agents of Shield has been good but is still boring to me. As far as CW shows go, the Arrowverse shows have been lackluster this season. Supergirl is a boring. The Flash is a mess (but speedster Megatron is cool-looking). Arrow has been decent (and tonight's episode was probably the best of the season so far). And Legends of Tomorrow just doesn't care, and I can only really watch it in that context (though it's arguably been somewhat good when I set aside any and all expectations). The Vampire Diaries ended about as strongly as it could (and I did like the ending, problems aside), and The Originals seems poised to follow suit. In the way of past shows, I started watching the first season of Suits, and while I'm only halfway through the first season, I can't give this show enough praise. Why didn't anyone bring it to my attention sooner? It feels a bit surreal to be enjoying so little on television considering that two years ago I was enjoying almost every show I was watching. Is there anything worth looking into right now? Or shows that I've overlooked in recent years? Rex recommended White Collar to me some years back.
  22. I'm not sure what it means by "better." Games have improved graphics, cut-scenes, emotions, more capability in general... As far as nostalgia goes, I feel like this experience is something I would only feel about games I played when I was growing up, probably from early age to age 20s? Games after that, I don't think I would feel nostalgic, maybe because A) they are recent, or they just less memorable because of more things in life at older age, or C) first experience is more memorable than the repeated ones? I wouldn't be compelled to play these games again at age 40 or something, but maybe check out or revisit the music or something for that nostalgia effect. I think the games with great good feeling music is most nostalgic to me, there might be other things. list: Donkey Kong Country I, II, III, Final Fantasy 8, Chrono Trigger.
  23. I love me some old-school, but I would definitely argue that the newer generations of gaming have been "better" than the old, or are more worthy of being revisited later from a standpoint of "I want to go back to these." Setting PSX aside for a moment, every generation prior to the PSX/N64/Dreamcast can be revisited during a random afternoon, except for RPGs. Games just weren't long enough back then. Meanwhile, as I discovered with a friend the other night, a lot of N64 games can just be thrown in and played around with and then set aside. Mario 64 and Ocarina of Time are the exception on length. I'm not as sure about PSX titles, because my collection is almost wholly RPGs (except for Symphony of the Night and the Megaman Legends games, though the RPG argument is still there with those). Since I broadened the conversation a bit, I do want to comment that it was interesting messing around in the two Pokemon Stadium games. Awkward movesets and odd mechanics made an original Stadium battle particularly challenging. And Stadium 2 almost objectively has better mini-games, despite the fact that I played Stadium's much more. Lastly, Mario Kart 64 did not have nearly so tight of controls as the modern Kart games do.
  24. I didn't list everything, those are just some examples of games on my list. And it's totally cool if you'd like to insult my preferences. Because they are preferences.
  25. Well, your list includes ps1 but no ps1 games. I can only assume you've been biased by the new games, especially considering most your series have recent entries.
  26. Rift Edit: Since this is turning into a conversation, I split it off into its own topic. Slightly off-topic but not worth making a whole new thread to post: I took a few hours and went through the list of all games for PS1,PS2,PS3,PS4, XBox360,XBoxOne, N64, Gamecube and WiiU and I ended up making a list of 56 games called "Games at 40" which represented all the games I've played partially or beaten that I would want to replay down the road. This list represents all the games I consider great. The list includes games like the Bioshock series, the Mario Galaxy games, some Zelda games, the Paper Mario series, some of the Zelda series, the original Devil May Cry and the Uncharted series. And starting in 2017, I will be making a list of the games for new systems that I don't have the time to play but would like to try. Hopefully, it will only be about 6-12 games max per year. I think gaming is great, but I know I won't have a ton of time to play in the next few years. So it will be nice to catalog the few games I might care about and then just get it all out of my head for the next year.
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