When we founded AMOLAG over a year ago now (blimey) Al and I agreed that we would only do a podcast if the two of us could both make the recording. We’ve honoured that agreement to date and as far i’m concerned that’s the way it will always be. It’s something that we both really enjoy doing and it’s great to sit down in the same room with your mates every fortnight and chat about gaming, have a few drinks and take the mick out of Kev for the games he (or his kids) have been playing. It has it’s ups and downs as anything of this time sink does. There’s been times when I haven’t been feeling it and i’m sure there’s times when Al hasn’t either but we’ve gone ahead and recorded and any negative thoughts flow away as soon as we start chewing the fat.
Bring it back to the beginning of September however and you may have noticed that there was a period of maybe 5 or 6 weeks where no content really appeared on the site and no podcast popped up on your AMOLAG iTunes subscription. This is the period that I will refer to as “The Perfect Storm”. Cast your mind back to early January and you may well remember during one of the podcasts I proposed a challenge to Al. I took to this challenge like a duck to water and slowly built up a significant lead that made Al concede the win to me and gave himself the stress / prize of suiting himself up as Claptrap for the Eurogamer Expo.
As soon as this challenge finished I thought i’d have a couple of days away from gaming. I wanted to recharge my gaming mojo and to get involved in watching some of the Olympics that I was fortunate enough to get tickets for. The trouble was that after a couple of days away, I really didn’t feel like going back. My hours spent on the 360 trying to grind out achievements for the challenge acted like an invisible barrier from me returning. I don’t ever want to have to play games again for that reason. A combination of that and the more time spent watching the Olympics the further away from gaming I felt. So I spoke to Al and we agreed that we’d put the podcast on hiatus for a bit so that we could both have a bit of time off and recharge our heavily depleted gaming mojo’s.
So inspirational were the athletes representing the British Olympic and Paralympic teams that I had to watch every minute of coverage I could. This was one of those once in a lifetime moments and I didn’t want to miss any of it. The weather was even nice which meant BBQ’s and the freedom to go outside without the fear of being drenched. There were no games on the horizon that I thought I wanted to play and we had got to the stage of this cycle of consoles where innovation seemed to have disappeared to be replaced by a derivative game with a number at the end. This is what I mean by the perfect storm.
Then all of a sudden something landed on my doormat…. It was a game that I had pre-ordered a while back that, in the excitement of everything going on, I had completely forgotten about, it’s name “Sleeping Dog’s”. It sat opened but unplayed for a couple of days until I took it to Phil’s where we played the opening couple of missions. At that moment something clicked. Over the next couple of weeks a combination of this and several other games like Dark Souls and Batman: Arkham Asylum (older games that I’d been meaning to crack open) slowly started refilling the mojo. I spoke to Al about recording another podcast and as his gaming mojo was overflowing after almost living in Skyrim for the month he was ready to roll. We set the date and it felt good, having your gaming mates in the same room, it felt like we hadn’t missed any time at all. I’m sure it helped with the knowledge that we are heading towards the Eurogamer Expo and the Christmas rush where there are so many games coming out that we are looking forward to that it’s a question of which ones as opposed to that one again.
I’m sure we’ll go through these feelings again but I think as long as we don’t have a stupidly long challenge (again) that saps people of their mojo (again), combined with another monumental summer of sport that 2012 gave us, combined with a new release barren spell longer than Noah (allegedly) spent on his Ark then we’ll be bringing you podcasts and content for the foreseeable future!
Quickly reflecting on Eurogamer it was definitely the games that were daring to be different that caught the eye and had a positive effect on the mojo! Games like The Unfinished Swan, Tokyo Jungle, Prison Architect, Ni No Kuni and even the reboot of Tomb Raider are all games that are making me look forward to the next year of gaming with a real spring in my step.