Look Back at 2016 Gaming and Blogging

Following on from my personal post regarding 2016 and 2017 it’s now time to get back to gaming posts.

My Blog

First up 2016 was the year I started by blog and so far it’s lasted 6 months which is a lot longer than I thought it would last. Honestly, I often start things with good intentions then either get bored or distracted by something else but I’ve found blogging to be enjoyable.

I’ve been looking at my stats on wordpress and it never ceases to amaze me that people are actually reading the things I write as I wasn’t sure whether anyone would read it or not.

Since my first post in June, my stats for 2016 shows I had 8,287 views from 5,648 viewers which seems a lot for me. I’d have been happy knowing a few people had read my posts never mind thousands. 

The first few months of blogging my posts weren’t getting a lot of views and I had between 50 and 100 views which is still probably more than what I thought I would be getting as I’ve not really done much to try and get more people reading my blog, I just post and hope someone finds it interesting.

In November though my number of viewers shot up and I had more in the first week than I did in the previous 4 months. This was all due to Eve Online and the release of the Alpha Clones.

I wrote a couple of Eve Online posts in October which got views of around 15 and that was about usual for my posts. My first Alpha Clone post then got 1,488 views in November and currently has almost 3000 views. My next few posts about the Alpha Clone experience also generated a lot of views, not as many as my first but still over 1000 views for them. I wasn’t expecting to get that many but I found out that by googling Eve Online Alpha Clone or various questions about it, my posts were on the first page and that’s how I was getting the views. Alot of people were looking online for information and stumbling upon my blog.

Since then my Eve Online Alpha Clone posts have continued getting plenty of views. It some what surprised me to see that so many people have been reading those posts, I just hope they have been useful to anyone reading them.

November ended with 3,331 views of my blog and December was higher with 4,521. It’s not all Eve Online views either as my other posts have started getting more too but are no where near my Eve ones and range from less than 10 on some posts to over 100 on others depending on the topic.

When I started blogging I never thought I’d get anywhere near that many. It’s probably not even that much if it was compared with other bloggers but for someone not actively pushing for viewers and is blogging as a hobby I’m happy with those numbers. 

The other thing which keeps on amazing me is where the views are coming from. Unsurprisingly most are from the US or the UK but I’m getting views from right across the world and so far had viewers from 99 different countries.

My 2016 Gaming

At the start of 2016 I can’t remember me playing too many games. I had stopped playing my 3 main games – World of Warcraft, Eve Online and Football Manager. 

World of Warcraft had grown stale, I had got to the stage where I had no motivation to play the game anymore as it was still 8 months away from the next expansion and I was bored playing the current expansion.

Eve Online was also on hold, I have always played it on and off since I started playing it and at the end of 2015 I tried getting back into it and joined a null corp. I stopped playing again only a month later as the null politics, call to arms, deployments 40+ jumps away and station spinning stopped me from enjoying the game.

Football Manager 2016 had only been out a few months but I had a few saves corrupt on me due to it crashing while saving. That meant I couldn’t get into a long term save and found myself constantly starting new games. Without the commitment to a long term save I didn’t feel like playing the game. 

The only game I remember playing was Fallout 4 which was released late 2015. I was still playing it at the start of 2016 but was getting to the end of the game and was starting to get bored of it. The game itself is a great game but after you’ve played it constantly and have hundreds of hours doing the same things it starts getting boring.

As I wasn’t playing any MMOs at the start of 2016 and was getting bored of the games I was playing, at some point I started trying out some of the free to play MMOs and downloaded Star Trek Online, Elder Scrolls Online, Star Wars The Old Republic, Wildstar, Blade & Soul and ArcheAge as well as trying Rift again which I started to play when it was first released. 

I couldn’t get into any of the games, the idea of starting from scratch appealed to me but at the same time I wasn’t sure if I wanted to invest my time grinding to the end game. What made it worse was I compared them to Warcraft and they couldn’t compete with it. The free to play model also didn’t feel right to me as there were too many restrictions. I’d usually rather pay a subscription but didn’t want to sign up to them if I didn’t enjoy the free to play versions.

I also knew that the next expansion for World of Warcraft was being released later in the year which I was looking forward to. I didn’t want to play the current expansion anymore but didn’t really want to commit to a different MMO. 

I was in between games for a while early 2016 only really playing Clash of Clans and Boom Beach on my mobile while trying out different games and flitting between the games I owned without really concentrating on any in particular. 

I didn’t buy many new games in the first few months of 2016 but in March I heard about The Division being released and looked into it. The game looked like it would be good so I bought it on release day as a bit of an impulse buy. I’d no intentions of getting it but the hype built up and I ended up getting it.

I kind of regret buying it, the game was fun at the start, it looked good and the game play was good but it got too repetitive very early on. I played it for about 2 months on and off but I’ve not played in since. I’ve read that it’s had lots of improvements so one day I might try it again. 

May saw me buying my next game when Overwatch was released. I’ve no regrets about buying that as it’s a fun shooter to play with lots of different play styles available. Currently I’m not playing it that often as other games are taking priority but it’s still a good game to play now and again. 

May was also around the time I resubbed to World of Warcraft. With the new expansion due out I wanted to finish off the current expansion by finishing the legendary quest line, opening up flying in Draenor and completing all the raids. I managed of get that done on my main and also leveled a couple of alts up to max level just before the next expansion was released.

Warcraft took up a lot of my gaming time after I started playing again and was my main game through most of the second half of 2016 especially once the new expansion went live at the end of August. All other games were put to one side while I concentrated on WoW.

A month after Legion went live I had my main to max level and my time playing it slowed down. It’s never stopped but it slowed down to where I wasn’t feeling the need to play it all the time so I started looking for something else. 

In October I ended up back playing Eve Online again. I had been reading some good blogs online about the wars going on and about the Alpha Clones and got the urge to play it again hoping that I could stick with it longer than last time. 

Eve Online is currently one of my most played game having now played this time for over 3 months and still enjoying it. I think I’ve found a corp I can call home and although I don’t get online as much as I’d like, I have been been having fun when I’ve been playing. 

Football Manager 2017 was also released at the end of October and that is another of my most played games. I’ve got 1 long term save going and had no crashes so I’ve been able to get into a good save. I’ve already played fm 2017 more in a few months the I did fm 2016 in a year.

Civilization VI was also released in October which is another game I bought on impulse (I really should stop doing that), I just had the urge to buy and play it. In hindsight I probably should have waited as although it’s a good game I just don’t have the time to play it alongside my other games at the moment.

Black Friday at the end of November saw me getting The Witcher 3 and Titanfall 2. I’ve had lots of fun playing Titanfall multiplayer but so far I’ve not played The Witcher, I’ll get round to it eventually.

Other notable games I got in 2016 were the mobile games Clash Royale, Pokemon Go and Summoners War.

Clash Royale quickly became my favorite mobile game. It was a new experience and different to any other game I’d played. I’m still playing it at the moment but I’m no longer motivated to play it. The problem I have is I’m not having fun playing the game anymore as the stage I’m at I’m getting matched against players with much higher level cards than me and I can’t compete with them. I’m also finding that too many players play the current meta so I’m getting sick of facing the same cards and decks all the time.

Pokemon Go was fun for a while but that only lasted a couple of weeks. I had problems with getting a good mobile network signal to be able to play the game. Living in a fairly remote area of the UK I could only get g on my phone in a lot of areas and I needed 3g or 4g to be able to play it.

Summoners Wars is a game I only started playing a few weeks ago at the end of 2016. I’m finding myself becoming addicted to it as although there is a lot of grinding and RNG involved there is also a lot to aim for which keeps me wanting to play and improve my monsters. I will probably write a post on it soon once I understand the game a bit more.

Overall 2o16 started slow for my gaming and I was a bit unsure on what games I wanted to play or what I wanted to do in the games I was playing. 2016 ended a lot better though, I’ve got a few games I’m playing a lot and I’m having fun playing them.

Blogging has also been a success for me in 2016 and I’ve enjoyed 6 months of it so far. Hopefully 2017 will be a good year for my gaming and blogging too.

– Sparko Marco 

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