Welcome to May’s editorial post, a monthly progress report which rounds up all the happenings here at Later Levels in case you missed anything. With online gaming expos now being the new hot thing, let’s have a quick recap of recent events.

Blog life

  • WordPress:   1,429
  • Twitter:   591
  • Facebook:   83
  • Instagram:   197
  • Twitch:   135
  • Posts:

  • Total published:   20 posts
  • Most popular:   Conversation and critique: Finding Paradise
  • Most liked:   The video games that define me
  • Most discussed:   The Great Blog Crawl
  • My favourite:   Plea of Thieves: peaces of eight
  • Traffic:

  • Views:   2,057
  • Visitors:   1,189
  • Likes:   338
  • Comments:   114
  • Best day:   Mondays
  • Other posts worth checking out:

  • Reflecting On My First Livestream by Ian from Adventure Rules
  • Self-Care Tips From Link by Kris from Double Jump
  • Why I Don’t ‘Review’ Games by Pete from MoeGamer
  • I Dislike that I Like Likes by Pinkie from Pinkie’s Paradise
  • 10 Kickass Women in Horror Games by The Horror Gamer
  • Missing your local drinking hole during the lockdown? Then Solarayo from Ace Asunder and I have just the thing you need. We kicked off the first Great Blog Crawl in May and invited everyone to join us in a quiz that has them ‘crawling’ through 50 of the greatest sites in the blogosphere. Quietschisto from RNG is our official bartender for the event, and you can check out what you’ll need to make some great cocktails (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic) during our virtual pub on Saturday, 06 June 2020 in this post. There’s still time to part and you can find all the details here.

    A Mystery Blogger Award from The Late Night Session last month gave me a chance to consider what Later Levels would be about if I wasn’t able to cover video games. It’s safe to say that the subject of the site won’t be changing any time soon and I’ll continue searching out the best point-and-clicks, while wishing for sequels to some of the adventures I love. I’m a little surprised that the four games I chose as those which define me in a response post to a tweet from Alex Sigsworth weren’t all from this genre – but there was no way I could miss RPGs Fable and Eastshade from my list!

    Gaming life
    Games played:

  • Black Book prologue
  • Chrono Trigger
  • Contradiction: Spot the Liar!
  • Dark Nights with Poe and Munro
  • Diablo III: Reaper of Souls
  • In Other Waters
  • Overlord
  • Return of the Obra Dinn
  • Rise of the Tomb Raider
  • The Blind Prophet
  • Demos from the Digital Dragons Indie Celebration
  • Games reviewed and previewed:

  • Beautiful Desolation
  • Beyond the Veil
  • Black Book
  • Keepsake
  • Lost Words: Beyond the Page
  • Ring of Fire
  • Sea of Thieves
  • The Flower Collectors
  • Demos from the Digital Dragons Indie Celebration
  • Due to the cancellation of many expos this year, we’ve seen an increase in the number of gaming festivals taking place online. LudoNarraCon went ahead at the end of April and I had the opportunity to try several demos, with text-based horror Beyond the Veil being my favourite. The Digital Dragons Indie Celebration followed earlier this month and I was rather taken by Children of Silentown and The Blind Prophet. The following week, I bought the latter and completed it on the same day because the protagonist was such a good character – I hope he returns for a sequel at some point.

    Another event worth mentioning was The Eurovision Division which was brought back again for 2020. Thanks to Dan from nowisgames.com and Phil for keeping Pete company during five hours of The Division 2, which enabled me to watch all this year’s Eurovision entries and declare the Iceland entry as my winner! In other news, if you’re into turn-based card games I’d recommend checking out Black Book; although I don’t usually like such mechanics, it’s dark storyline and artwork persuaded me to back it on Kickstarter.

    Real life

    We’re now into our third month of lockdown in the UK, although restrictions have been eased a little in the past few weeks. My employer is now talking about re-opening in September so there’s still plenty of conference calls while working from home coming up. It will be interesting to see how many companies start thinking about asking their staff to work remotely permanently; I’m not sure if this is something I’d want to do myself because certain projects are better done in person, but I’ll admit that I’m enjoying not having to do the daily commute.

    We’ve now returned to having my stepson Ethan with us every weekend and it sounds as though the lockdown has been hard from him. He’s had very little contact with his friends and isn’t really allowed to play video games at his other home – the sort of things that are incredibly important to a 12-year old. To cheer him up, we recently arranged his first Dungeons & Dragons session for him with Kevin from The Lawful Geek as our dungeon master.

    Once he got over his initial nerves, he absolutely loved it. The fact that we all made it out of the crypt alive, were able to prevent a town from sinking into a swamp, broke a curse and were transformed into knights made Ethan’s day. It’s looking like we’re going to start a ‘proper’ game at some point soon, and we’d highly recommend Kevin if yo’re looking for a dungeon master who’s great with new players.

    Coming up
    Events in June:

  • 01-04: The Great Blog Crawl 2020 quiz
  • 01-04: NarraScope 2020
  • 01-26: To The Moon Play-Along
  • 01-30: Summer Game Fest
  • 06: The Great Blog Crawl 2020 virtual pub
  • 06-08: Guerilla Collective
  • 09-14: Steam Game Festival: Summer Edition
  • 11: Shadowrun stream
  • 11-14: The Escapist Indie Showcase
  • 15: Gamers blog party: summer 2020 invitation
  • 23: New Game+ Expo
  • 25: Shadowrun stream
  • Every Thursday: #BloggerTalk
  • Take a look at the Side-quests page for more!
  • Posts planned:

  • Lockdown activities which aren’t video games
  • Coming-of-age games for Ethan’s birthday
  • My ever-growing Steam wishlist
  • A response post to an award from Hobbits Of Hyrule
  • A round-up from the summer Steam Game Festival
  • And now over to you guys: what have you been up to lately, and what have you got planned for the coming month? Is there anything the community can help with or get involved in? Let everybody know in the comments below so we can show our support. Thanks for reading!

    Save point: May 2020

    2 thoughts on “Save point: May 2020

    1. Thanks for the link! That online D&D session sounds like it was great fun. Extreme Aspergers-fuelled social anxiety means I’d have to really muster up some courage to do that with someone I don’t know, but it sounds as if Kevin is a wonderfully supportive presence who is understanding of those who are coming to the hobby for the first time — or those who are just nervous!


      • Kevin is good at what he does! I was so nervous when he asked if my other-half and I would participate in our first tabletop RPG earlier this year, but he quickly put us at ease and now we’re really getting into it. It’s one of the reasons why we turned to him when Ethan expressed an interest in D&D; we knew Kevin would be patient and guide him through it. He was the perfect choice! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

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