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Why Wii U Is the Best Console For Me

I'm 31 years old. I'm a family man. I have a wonderful and amazing wife who stays at home and takes care of our 18 month old son, another on the way, two cats, and a large 65 pound dog. I work at a desk job, doing technical program management, putting in the usual ~9 hour work day with a ~3 hour commute. When I get home I make dinner, help with the nighttime routine and help put the little one to bed, do chores like dishes and walk the dog, and then get about 1-2 hours to decompress before bedtime. That decompression time is usually spent with the television streaming something in the background while I hang out with my wife, talking about whatever or about nothing at all.

This is why the Wii U is the best console for me.

I'm an avid gamer, well, I used to be. I've worked in games for almost a decade and it will always be a part of me, regardless of what my occupation is. What I have learned over the years, however, is that time becomes a very rare commodity. I don't have the hours I used to to pour over Mass Effect 3 for hours on a Saturday afternoon. At best I may get an hour on the night before a holiday or maybe if I'm wrecked with a bout of insomnia on a Saturday night I'll creep away to play an hour in the basement before ultimately collapsing asleep in the hallway. There's just so much "life" to do that I can't game. To be completely redundant, gaming is a very "active activity". There's no passiveness to it and I can't just do it in the background while I make meatballs for the kid. There's no way to play a Blessing of the Gods while making sure there aren't toddlers running back and forth on the couch (SIT DOWN ON THE COUCH).

That's why I've been enjoying my time so much more with the 3DS and Vita as I got older. That hour at lunch can be spent playing a game that is thoroughly enjoyable and engaging that part of my cortex that asks me on a daily basis, "What happened to you? You used to be cool." Then it skateboards away with flannel jacket flapping in the wind.

But while the handheld experience is certainly good and fulfilling, I miss the console experience. With certain exceptions on the Vita, there's a certain level of polish and power that's missing from my 3DS. That's when I remembered this Kotaku article I read a while back where a game editor was at the airport playing Pikmin 3 on their Wii U. "No TV. No problem." Pikmin 3 is one of the games that allows you to play the entire game on the gamepad itself. I also learned that the newest released Hyrule Warriors is the same way. Jackpot. 1,000,000 rupees, please.

So this is how I've learned that the Wii U is the best game console for me now. Now I can squeeze in ~45 minutes of console gaming a day if I really wanted to and scratch that itch. Plus this doesn't cut into the time required of me at home.

In the end it may not be the same for you. Maybe you don't have a desk job where this time makes sense or maybe you have the ability to play that PS4 or XBOX One at home. I'm happy for you though. For me, it's perfect and brings some joy to my heart. You know what they say, "Happy gamer dad, Happy is a song from Pharrell Williams."

How I Feel Right Now.


WIP - Chunky Car: Biggie Smalls Thomas Train Version

This is a work in progress of one of the sides to my Biggie Smalls Thomas Train Chunky Car. That's a mouthful! The Chunky Car is this thing I'm designing for kicks. The theme is Biggie Smalls as Thomas the Train. It's inspired by the video below. I'll get some new shots in the future.

This style of Chunky Car is difficult when it's not a square. I don't know why I went with this one first. Oh well!


Bob's Burgers BRIO Train

I decided to customize one of my son's BRIO trains. I actually think it was from IKEA, but whatever. I used the art from a papercraft made by one of the Bob's Burgers staff. I wanted to do a quick custom train without doing the art part.

Now that I know I can do it easily and it's a pretty cool result, time to work on some totally original pieces.


Comics - Battle Pirates

When I was working at KIXEYE, I did a few comics for my team. These are the ones that I did.

Comic - TAGS Teaser

This has been on my mind for quite a while. Time to do what I can with it before the ants take over.

DIY - Dry-Erase Playing Cards

Someone who purchased some of my dry-erase wooden game tokens asked if I made playing cards in the same way. I said I didn't, but thought it would be a cool experiment to try. Pretty neat, I guess!

You can make these yourself actually. I'm using the same concept from my original Dry-Erase Game Tokens post.

1. Procure yourself some dry erase sheets (I use GoWrite! Dry Erase Sheets) and some playing cards. I happened to have some blank Bicycle playing cards, so I used those. Any work though.

2. Cut out a rectangle from the dry-erase sheets that are smaller than the playing card. I used a rounded corner paper punch to make them look nicer. Not necessary, but a nice bonus.

That's pretty much it!

Purhase: Wandering Panda Store

Comic - Anaconda

True story.

For reference, here is the video. It's something else. It transcends all ages. In all honestly, he was just surprised when the bass drum hit.



I'm just trying to look at a slideshow about really cool "cut in half" objects, but this thing is just overloaded with ads. Just above the fold you see four ads, including one video ad that automatically plays. Each time you look at the next slide/photo, the ads refresh.

I understand that these media sites need the ad revenue to make their money and keep the lights on, but the experience is awful. I didn't even get to the third photo because it was so awful. No wonder people install ad blockers.

Comic - Air Pressure

True story.