The State of the Game: Session Based Gaming

This week my play time was limited again by social interactions. Damn those friends pulling me away from my games! I have also fallen into a pattern of playing “Session-based” games. Games like MOBAs are inherently session-based, because each game begins and ends in the time you are playing it, but even games like FTL and SOTS can be played in this manner, because much of the time  you will start the game and die in one sitting. I actually have yet to have a time when I stopped playing either of those games and came back to the save point at a later date. With that said, these are the games I have been playing: Awesomenauts, League of Legends, Sword of the Stars: The Pit and Faster than Light.

I only played a few games here and a few games there. I’m nearing the end of my 7th prestige level, and still keep finding ways to climb up the leaderboards. I’m now sitting at a 15558 rating, which is good enough to put me right around the 2000 rank on the board. So out of 90k players of the PS3 version of the game, I’m in the top 1 or 2% — something like that, I’m not actually doing the math. For shits, here are my overall account stats:


Faster than Light:
Between this game and SotS, I’ve been having fun dying over and over again and not reaching the final destination. The fun thing about these games is that despite dying after getting farther than you have before, you gain experience with the game, and that never hurts. In FTL, while playing the game you can meet certain conditions to open up other ships, and once you have done so, you will have a better chance to get farther along in the game. An example is one of the ships will unlock for you once you have entered (completed?) sector 5. My best run thus far has been to sector 4, and I had to turn the difficulty down to easy to even get that far. The punishing nature of this game is part of the appeal, as it makes me feel like the good old days of gaming are back, Permadeath and all. Last week I had written that I have made a couple of runs, and how they had ended. This week I only had a couple more runs, the first being on normal, and ending in combat in the third sector. I had found some better weapons (hull laser) and also purchased a new system for my ship, the droid control. This came in handy during combat, as instead of having to unman a station and send my crew to fix damage, the repair bot does it automatically. Knowing that this feature was in the game, I made sure that on my 4th run that I bought the droid control right away. My 4th run was on easy, and I managed to get a bit farther, making it to the 4th sector, although it would have been nice to get to that 5th sector for the better ship. My goal now is to try and get there, on easy or otherwise, then once I have a better ship I can return to normal. I feel like a chump playing on easy, but in these types of games there really isn’t much shame in it. Here’s the stats from my runs, the highlighted areas are new records made during my last run:

I hate the Kestral
I hate the Kestrel

The Pit:
I haven’t made a new record for floor depth on SotS just yet. I have made quite a few more runs — I’ve played this game more than anything else this week — but I was mainly trying out other classes and seeing how many recipes I could dig up. I have added to my recipe list considerably, but there is much more out there that I still can’t create. During one of the games, I decided to try out the Striker, which is one of the races added with the Gold add-on. This odd bird/snake creature has some distinct advantages over the humans, but some disadvantages as well. Skills wise, it is somewhat pigeonholed into playing a ranged/psionic role. It has high brains and psionics to start, along with a spear that can hit from longer distance than normal melee. I felt like I could kill just about anything that came my way, as long as I hit first and killed first. The Striker is a bit on the squishy side, and that is the trade off. He wasn’t so bad at foraging though, so it did help with collecting recipes/messages. I didn’t get too far though before starving to death, and that seems to be what kills me more often than not. I’ll be trudging along just fine, but cannot seem to find any food. Recipes should help this, as the combined ingredients seem to give more food than the ingredients alone.

Where's all the food?!
Where’s all the food?!

Last night I decided to switch things up a bit, and I started a game with the Marine on Insane difficulty. I watched a video of a player do exactly that, and it didn’t seem all that difficult. I tried to follow his tips/strategies and let’s just say I didn’t make it all that far before the biggest baddies ever started showing up. One the very first floor I encountered a MK II security bot that made things difficult. On the second or third floor there were already giant Proteans, which split into smaller Proteans when you kill them. I was able to destroy a group of them with the grenades in my inventory, but then I was attacked and killed by a giant bunny. Yes, you read that right, a GIANT BUNNY. Sadface.

What a way to go…

League of Legends:
In league, I’ve been playing ARAM, and as I mentioned in my last few posts, mostly fine tuned my new masteries and played some of the featured game mode, One for All. I am loving the support love that has come from the masteries and item changes, but I am not so fond of this particular featured game mode. The upcoming mode for Howling Abyss that features 1v1 and 2v2 does sound awesome though. Snowdown brings with it a lot of new and old content for sale and to earn, so I’ll be writing about that when it comes through, along with other changes as they happen.