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October 2023 Retrospective

The Good


If there is one family gathering I look forward to every year it is Thanksgiving. Walking through a forest as the fall colours turn, catching up with relatives you haven't seen in a while, and then chowing down on a big turkey dinner. I hope it never grows old on me.

Baldur's Gate III

This month I cracked 100 hours of Baldur's Gate 3. It is currently my 4th most played game on Steam, about 10 hours behind Firaxis' XCOM reboot. I don't know what else to write other than I absolutely love this game and it will easily be on my "Games of the Decade: 2020s" list.

It really is amazing what Larian Studios has created. It is also kinda funny how games from 20 years ago, like Neverwinter Nights, also had these massive worlds with incredibly dynamic systems. But somewhere around the Xbox 360 era the focus switched to rote AAA games with impressive graphics and tight (yet repetitive) gameplay loops. I am really glad to see the pendulum starting to swing back the other way.

Season 2 of Shoresy

I know it ain't everyone's cup of tea but for me season 2 of Shoresy is just as good as the first. I love unabashedly Canadian comedies like this.

Fantom M MagSafe Wallet

I was immediately a fan of MagSafe wallets after trying Apple's leather one but it was still a bit too small. I upgraded to the Fantom C which was a better but I still could use more space.

This month I picked up the Fantom M and it is utter perfection. Not only can it hold seven cards comfortably, the magnets on it are far superior than the Fantom C. I can easily pick my iPhone 15 Pro Max up by just the wallet.

If you are in the market for a MagSafe wallet I can highly recommend the Fantom M.

Honourable Mentions

Marvel's Spider-Man 2

I have only played a handful of hours of Marvel's Spider-Man 2 so I'm going to hold off on doing an in-depth review until I beat it next month.

But I can safely say that I am enjoying this game. In my Games of the Year 2020: The Good article I wrote:

The best thing I can say about Spider-Man: Miles Morales is that it has made me super excited for a Spider-Man 2 where you can play both Peter Parker and Miles Morales. The first 30 minutes of this game where they work together was an absolute blast. I very much want to see more of that in the future.

Well in the first 30 minutes of Spider-man 2 I played as both Peter Parker and Miles Morales so we're off to a good start. If I can get 10-20 hours of enjoyment out of this game I'll consider it an absolute win.

Doom Guy: Life in First Person

I finished reading reading John Romero's autobiography, Doom Guy: Life in First Person, and I am happy to report that the sections about DOOM, Quake, and Ion Storm were fantastic. Unfortunately, everything on either side of those topics struggled to hold my attention.

If you're a fan of early first-person shooters and have nostalgic memories of id Software I'm sure you can enjoy this book. But I'd probably recommend everyone read Masters of Doom first if you really wanna focus on those halcyon days.

Monster Hunter Now

Monster Hunter Now is truly a Niantic game, in that if they hadn't partnered with an IP I already enjoyed there is no way I would be playing the game. It's bonkers to watch Niantic stumble around in the dark trying to recreate the magic they had with PokΓ©mon Go while all the other mobile game developers have moved on. I genuinely am curious if anyone at Niantic actually plays the most successful mobile games out of Asia because their monetization strategy is just horrendous.

I wish I lived in Japan so I could play Dragon Quest Walk which seems like the natural evolution of the games Niantic started.

Smoked a Nub Connecticut cigar

This month I had the opportunity to smoke a Nub Connecticut cigar and I would easily give it two enthusiastic thumbs up. I would even go as far as saying it is a perfect introductory cigar. It's a quick smoke, with a nice easy draw, and a sweet taste. If I ever get my own home I could easily see myself adding the Nub brand to my humidor.

Also, if you find yourself in Toronto looking to purchase some sticks might I recommend Avenue Cigars. The people there have a fantastic selection and can make excellent recommendations.

The Bad

Remote Work

I don't think it is physically possible for me to explain in writing why I'm no longer sold on remote work. At least not without taking several hours to write and rewrite my thoughts and still probably end up with something unintentionally inflammatory.

But I just wanted to put out there that I really am missing the type of collaboration which only seems to be possible in the office. Communicating only via Slack and Google docs is really starting to drive me insane. I think back to how productive I was at Uber and Affirm from 2014-2018 and how not a single job I've worked remotely has come close to that level of productivity.

Review October Goals

November Goals