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Black Waltz: progress, and more.
Etro's Knight
So...this manuscript is way too long. I'm already past 100k words and nowhere near finished. I'll have to separate it into a trilogy. I don't want to, but oh well. I'm preparing the first part and editing it now: formatting the document, fine-tuning a few things, etc. I'm happy with it. It's just strange how much my feelings about it changed between when I started it in August up until now. I'm doing my best to go with the flow and not stubbornly stick to story arcs that don't feel right anymore. Moreover, I had to change the title from Ruska because, aside from a few scenes that I copied word-for-word, the entire concept shifted from the original.

Other than that, I've been slogging my way through homework for my degree. I should be done some time this year depending on class availability.

Also beat Nioh the other night. It reminds me more of Ninja Gaiden and Onimusha than anything. I love the depth and fluidity of combat. I find the game easy enough because I'm naturally focused most of the time. I noticed that as soon as I got tired and lost my focus, that's when I started dying. I had the most fun jumping into random levels to help co-op someone through a mission. I really like the variety of armor and weapons. The story is decent; the cartoonishly evil villain really put me off the whole thing. The good thing is that I'm three trophies away from platinum. One of them involves spending an obscene amount of in-game money at the blacksmith. I apparently missed a glitch to get it done easily. I'll get it--eventually. The one comparison I will make to the Soulsborne games is that they're a superior overall package in terms of art direction, level design and world building. But Nioh's combat and gameplay is much more enjoyable. If this turns into a franchise, I hope that they'll keep making improvements to rival From Software.

Just got Yakuza 0 in the mail. I keep hearing amazing things about this game. I decided to give it a shot. I had been meaning to play the other games in the series. Never got around to it. Since this one is a prequel, it sounds like the best time to jump in. I'll start it once I'm done editing part one of this manuscript. I'm hoping this and getting platinum for Nioh will tide me over until Mass Effect Andromeda comes out next month. And then Persona 5 comes out not long after that. After sinking over 200 hours into the Japanese version, I'm only mildly excited about the NA release. After that, I'm on the fence about going back to Final Fantasy XIV for Stormblood. I probably will go back in May or so once I'm done with P5 and then play through the expansion in June once it's out. But then--Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age comes out in July. Getting platinum for that will easily take up weeks in between writing and classes over the summer. More importantly:

WHERE were all of these games last year and the year before? After The Witcher 3 and FFXIV: Heavensward, there was a serious drought. Now everything's coming out so close together. First world problems.

What else... I also went to see Hidden Figures and Moonlight within the past month. Both films are great. I could write a review about them, but I honestly don't know what I could say. Aside from a few inconsequential nit-picks, I'd only have positive things to say. Not much of a review.

Overall, for the past three weeks I've been metaphorically running through a field, saying, "I'm finally free!" after everything. I have certain struggles that I'm dealing with--and will always deal with--but I learned to accept them. 

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