2017 – Most Anticipated List

The books, games, and music I’m looking forward to in 2017.

I’ve been writing on this blog for three months now, and I still don’t really know what I’m doing with it.  I know that writing is cathartic to me and I get a lot out of committing my thoughts to paper (or a computer screen).  I’m also realizing how rough my writing is, and hopefully continued work on this blog will improve my flow.  Writing about my hobbies seems to give me the same release my wife gets when she vents about her day at work.  I’m not sure if that’s a gender thing or a personality thing, but I have definitely focused primarily on my hobbies for this blog.  What this thing looks like in the new year, I don’t know.  I’m going to keep the hobby train rolling however and write about what I’m looking forward to next year.

Books

The Great Ordeal/The Unholy Consult

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Who approves the art for Bakker’s novels?

When I finished The White Luck Warrior, I was once again super high on R Scott Bakker.  I did not want that book to end, and I was tempted to immediately jump into The Great Ordeal, which was released in July this year.  However, I have problems remembering names, places, and political factions when I read a book far removed from it’s predecessor.  This series in particular has some crazy names, so my plan is to read The Great Ordeal in March sometime in an attempt to keep the names straight for The Unholy Consult‘s release in July of next year.  I am especially excited for this book not only because it concludes the second series of books in Bakker’s series, but it is also right around my babies due date.  I’ll likely be reading this book at home on paternity leave with my brand new little baby.

Maybe another book from Steven Erikson?

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Malazan Book of the Fallen

When Erikson was releasing The Malazan Book of the Fallen series, he was spitting them out rapid fire all throughout the 00’s.  Since concluding the series in 2011, his writing pace has slowed down considerably.  While selfishly I would love if he would start writing a 100,000+ novel every year or two, his writing is singular and he has earned the right to do whatever the hell he wants.  I’ll be patiently waiting for the conclusion of the Kharkanas series Walk In Shadow.  I doubt it’ll be out next year, but until it’s released it stays on the list.

A New Fantasy or Sci Fi Series

I’m currently reading Pandora’s Star by Peter Hamilton.  I’m definitely having a harder time getting into it than I expected, and I might write a bit more about that soon.  Regardless, I’ve spent a good portion of the last few years reading and rereading Erikson, so I’m ready to branch out a little bit.  I’ve heard great things about Terry Pratchett and Discworld, and since he died last year I might jump into some of his books.  I’ve also heard good things about Tad Williams.  We’ll see, if Hamilton starts to grab me I’ll push forward with his books as well and maybe alternate between him and someone else.

Video Games

Horizon: Zero Dawn

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Robot Brontosaurus

My wife isn’t a huge gamer, but there are a few games she’s gotten into in the past.  One of those is the rebooted Lara Croft games.  She was completely addicted to the first one, and I bought her an Xbox last Christmas just so she could play the new one.  She hasn’t gotten in to another game in a while, and this one looks enough like Lara Croft that I think she’s going to love it.  It’s a female archer fighting robot dinosaurs.  What’s not to like?

Mass Effect Andromeda

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I’m calling it early – best game of 2017.

This is another game my wife loved, Mass Effect.  She and I have both played through all these games together a few times.  We especially like Mass Effect 2, the loyalty missions in that game are still incredible.  I’m excited for this one not just for my wife, but for me as well. I introduced my wife to Mass Effect because I was such a big fan.  I read every codex entry and played every side mission because I love the world building in these games.  It’s pretty clear that Bioware wanted to make another KOTOR game but didn’t have the license.  This is basically the Star Wars universe, but more gritty and dark.  This is probably my most anticipated game of the year.

Red Dead Redemption 2

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If not Mass Effect, then this is the best game of 2017.

Red Dead Redemption and Mass Effect 2 are top 5 all time games for me.  It’s hard for me to decide which of the two sequels I’m most excited for.  There’s nothing about the original that I didn’t love – the old west setting, John Marston and his crazy journey, the zombie DLC, it was all gold.  I’m a sucker for old west stories to begin with, so Rockstar would have to royally screw this up for me not to love it.

Persona 5

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I’m surprised I like this.

I know I’ve harped on how much I dislike Japanese RPG tropes in the past, but I am really excited about Persona 5.  I got Persona 4 as a free game on my Vita, and reluctantly tried it out once when I was bored.  I was shocked at how much I liked it.  Most of the game is spent as a teenager in Japan waking up, going to high school, doing extracurricular activities (sports, clubs, etc.), spending time with friends and family, and going to sleep.  This is typically the opposite of what I like in a video game, but there’s something about the flow of the game and the conversations between the characters that kept me hooked.  The writing on Persona 4 is much better than most Japanese games I’ve played.  It also helps that it’s also a really deep RPG with great dungeon crawling and combat.  Can’t wait for this one.

Music

I don’t really have anything I’m anticipating right now.  The three bands I’m most into right now all released new albums in the last six months (Opeth, Gojira, Animals as Leaders), so I don’t have anything specific I’m looking forward to right now.  My typical music habits are to find a new band, devour their music obsessively for a few months, and move onto the next thing.  Right now I don’t have a band I’m obsessing over, so I’m anticipating finding a new band I connect with in the new year.

Author: Ben Jones

Blogger. Husband. Doofus.

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