Decks and Sopranos

I got my Steam Deck last Thursday, exactly a week after I paid for it. I’ve tinkered a bit. It’s a little complicated. I think that if you stay within the Steam ecosystem it’s quite easy to use, but I also have for example Factorio on GOG and Civilization VI on Epic (and GTA V, which I got free and never played), which I’d quite like to try on the Deck. Going outside of Steam gets you into ‘desktop mode’ which is actually a desktop Linux installation. I’m happy with this as I’ve used Linux a lot in the past (and, dare I say it… Linux is fun!), but it’s not exactly easy to use for non technical people. You only really need to do this to configure things though, I think after you’ve got everything set up then normal everyday usage will stay within Steam.

I will post more when I get around to using it for its intended purpose rather than just fiddling…

In other news, I started watching The Sopranos. I don’t really know what to think about this program. It’s well written and well made and I want to keep watching to find out what happens, but am I actually enjoying it? Ehhhh I’m not sure. The problem is that they are horrible people. Really bad people! Even the priest is slimy! But I still look forward to seeing the next episode, so it must be doing something right. 🤷‍♂️

Excitement!

I’m very excited because my Steam Deck has shipped. I got the email to say it was ready on Thursday evening, paid a few hours later and then Monday got the email with a tracking code. At the moment it is still in the Netherlands, or at least that’s what the tracking says. It probably isn’t really. I probably won’t get another update until it’s through customs. Hopefully it will come by the weekend.

I don’t know what I’ll play on it though. 🤔

Dream from last night: I was at Parkrun having a terrible run because there was a very congested start and I got stuck to another runner. Literally stuck, like with glue. It took us a few minutes to peel ourselves off each other. Later on (still during Parkrun), the car I was in (????) got turned upside down so I had to get out of it. Then there was a queue going into the finish funnel so I was waiting a few minute before I officially finished. My finish time was around 25 minutes, which sounds pretty good considering everything that had happened, but I was so annoyed I squirted the marshal responsible for the queue in the face with a bottle of ketchup that I must have been carrying with me, which I regretted immediately (even though he deserved it). I woke up stressed that I was going to get banned from Parkrun.

Games and whatnot

Long roundabout post warning…

A while back I started playing old games on my phone via emulation. It’s good because they tend to be things you can just pick up and put down whenever is convenient. Currently I am playing Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories on a Playstation Portable emulator (PPSSPP). And it’s fun. Ridiculous too but very well made and enjoyable.

Anyway, somewhere along the way, I put down a reservation on a Steam Deck. I like the idea of just being able to pick up something, play a game, then put it down. This fits into my life much better now. I used to keep eyeing up the Nintendo Switch but I always decided that it’s a lot of money for what it is especially when you consider how expensive the games are. The Steam Deck is more money (£459 for the middle model) but it’s also a lot more – you can plug it into a dock with keyboard, mouse and monitor and it’s a fully functional PC. I probably won’t do that, but that’s what it is. It’s not just a proprietary gaming console like the Switch. So it makes sense to me. Currently, a website which tries to track order statuses of the Steam Deck thinks I’m about 75% of the way through the queue. Or in other words, a few more weeks…

I used to play a lot of Counter-Strike on Steam. For reasons best known to those who do so, some people will pay lots of money onthe Steam marketplace to make their guns in Counter-Strike look different. I’ve been selling off my old inventory and my Steam Wallet balance is now at almost £200. I had one, to me, completely unremarkable item sell for £55 (could maybe understand if it was an AK-47 but it was an MP9… huh?). So I am going to get a £200 discount off the Steam Deck? That’s pretty good!

Since getting into GTA:Vice City Stories I decided to watch Scarface, since apparently GTA is highly inspired by it. I was a bit surprised by how two dimensional Scarface is, given that it’s a highly regarded cult movie. It’s a functional story but if you look too closely you notice that a lot of details don’t really make sense. The ending sequence is very silly and not really in keeping with the style of the rest of the film. My favourite thing is that the serious assassin who turns up at the end decides to attack at night while wearing sunglasses.

Then I watched Carlito’s Way, which is sort of regarded as a spiritual successor. Carlito’s Way, in my opinion, is the opposite and really very good. It’s grim and depressing, but it’s a well written and well told story with believable characters and I am pleased I watched it. You know what’s going to happen at the end of the film because it’s shown at the very start and then done in a “how did we get here?” long flashback, but it’s still a surprise when it finally happens (again). I hadn’t realised until now how great of an actor Al Pacino is. If I didn’t know, I’m not sure I’d have realised it was the same actor in both films. And if you throw in The Godfather, you have him playing another gangster in another gangster film, and he’s completely unrecognisable between all three of them.

So in conclusion… I’m quite excited about the Steam Deck and hopefully I only have a few more weeks to wait.