This year has been filled with many ups, and downs. I've had my fair share of issues, and triumphs just like everyone else has. Through it all I've tried to remain hopeful, and positive for the future. Not only for myself, but also for others. With the constant barrage of bad news, journalistic road blocks, and industry downfalls I've struggled to maintain a positive outlook. I've faltered many times, and have only been brought back to my feet by those of you who cared.
Looking forward at the possibilities of 2016 I find myself even more conflicted in the emotional sense. The world around me is collapsing, and each day I'm reminded how much closer this world, and my life are to ending. I'm realizing that my hopes which are grounded mostly on simple pleasures, and online friendships could be taken away without a moment's notice. At the same time I know 2016's lineup of video games is going to be something to behold. As oddly misplaced as that notion is it keeps me distracted thinking I might at least find some pleasant moments amid the chaos that will no doubt ensue. Video games for me have been a saving grace more often than not. At times they were my light at the end of a dark tunnel. That's part of the reason I find myself in a depressed state. Seeing the gaming industry fall victim to bad business practices, and extremist ideals hurts. It cuts deep. I know the days of couch co-op on the NES with my brothers are long gone, and that a true revival in the industry will likely never happen due to corporate greed, and industry mismanagement, but I still hope for some enjoyment from the hobby I've grown so fond of over the years. I hope, and long for the distraction.
Aside from gaming 2016 also brings with it a great uncertainty for the people of America, and the people of the world. We are facing one of the worst presidential elections in the history of the United States. An election that could spell doom for us all. The candidates range from the positively idealistic, and inexperienced to extremists who would plunge the US into another civil war, or even the next World War. The news broadcasts are a constant reminder of how serious this election is, and how much is hanging in the balance. Sadly, I fear there are too many misguided people in this world. People who would easily vote in the wrong president based on hateful ideals. No matter who gets voted in I fear we will be facing some harsh times here in the states. None of the candidates, in my opinion are fit for such a seat of power.
On the positive side of things I'm looking forward to the new "Street Fighter V", "Doom", "Nioh", "No Man's Sky" and other games that will be brought to new-gen consoles in 2016. Why this lineup of releases weren't released in 2015 is beyond me, but at least they are coming. As far as my gaming focus goes I will be gaming hard next year, supposing the world doesn't collapse underneath my feet. I may, or may not bring many more reviews to the table, but I will be catching up on some "Me" gaming time for sure. I plan on trying to revive my passion for gaming with friends. Having amassed an extensive backlog of games that need completing will no doubt keep me busy for quite some time as well. There's no doubt in my mind I'll have plenty of things to preoccupy my time with. With all that being said I bring to you a closing remark, and some end of the year sentiments ...
In closing I send out a message of hope. I hope that each of you can find something in the new year that makes you happy. Something that can at least distract you from the negative side of the world we all live in. As I said on Twitter yesterday search hard, and find something that makes you happy. Once you do hold onto whatever it is, and don't let go. The leaders of this world want us in desperation, and despair. They want us hopeless, and withdrawn. They want us ignorant, and without a clue. Fight against it with all your will. Do not give into the negative side of things. Keep hope afloat in 2016, and don't let those who would do us harm win. Let them see that smile on your face, and that carefree attitude which has become so uncommon these days. I will do my best to do the same. Here's to hope, and happiness in 2016! May we beat the odds stacked against us, and prevail triumphantly over the evils of this world!
Your Last Samurai,
Brad Carver (OtakuDante)