I’ve been thinking about LAN parties lately.

You all should be old enough to remember these. You bring a bunch of computers over to someone’s house. Connect them all together and play videogames with/against your friends.

Alcohol was typically involved.

Anyway. I’ve been thinking a lot about LAN Parties because I miss that friendly competition (I also miss hanging out with people in person, but that’s a whole other thing).

When my friends and I form a squad online play Gambit in Destiny 2 or some other PvP game now, it’s like a bunch of lambs with knee and back pains being led to the slaughter at the hands of rando 13 year olds.

It’s not fun. I mean, it’s fun hanging out with my friends, but it’s less fun being annihilated over and over like Tom Cruise in Edge of Tomorrow.

So why do I bring this up? Because I need your help, 40 Bitters. I have a nutty idea that I want to run past you, and I can’t do it alone:

I want to create a softball/beer league, but for videogamers like you and me.

Why do something like this?

Well, mostly because I suck at softball. But more importantly, because it could be fun! Right now, thanks to the pandemic, playing games online is the only way for me, at least, to hang out with friends. It’s definitely a highlight of my week, and while it’s great to go on campaigns together, forming a team and adding some competition to the mix seems like a good way to level up the experience.

It would be fun to meet and play against other similarly-abled teams in the same boat. Not some hardcore Gen.G professional level e-sports competition, just casually against other olds, whom, I assume also have knee and back pains.

Plus, I’m assuming we’d all get some sweet jerseys. And there would definitely be a trophy.

I floated the idea by some people this week and there was some polite nodding of heads in agreement that it’s a solid idea, but there were also a lot of questions:

  • What console/format (PlayStation, Xbox, PC, NeoGeo)?
  • What games?
  • How do you set up a league?
  • How do you set up a team?
  • How often do you play?
  • How do we make it open so it’s not just a bunch of bros?
  • Who can design a kick-ass jersey for my team? (I gotta guy, actually)

These are all really good questions! There are a ton of reasons to not even try something like this. We’ve all got jobs, and responsibilities, and are just tired all the time.

I get it.

But the only thing that comes from doin’ nothin’ is nothin’. Creating a beer league for the olds could be something to mix up our videogame lives and make them just a little bit better.

Or maybe it’s a dumb idea. I dunno, I wanted to throw it out there. Maybe one of you has run a softball league or fantasy football league or maybe just watched The League before and has some helpful advice.

In some initial research, it looks like Challengermode could be used, but that seems to be built more around tournaments. I’ll keep looking into it, and who knows, once we’re all vaccinated, maybe this could even turn into an in-person party at some point.

Anyway, think about it. Drop me a line if you have any ideas.

Image via Steam

What the Hel is Valheim?

Vikings are having a moment. The hotly anticipated Thor: Love and Thunder is in production. Assassin’s Creed Valhalla was well received last year. And now a game called Valheim is blowing up on the Steam charts.

You’re a viking that gets dropped off to explore a procedurally generated world. You punch things to get resources (a la Minecraft), and craft those resources into tools and weapons (also a la Minecraft) to fight monsters. As you level up your resources you unlock the ability to craft more weapons, improve your armor and even create ships and nautical trade routes. It’s also multiplayer, so you can play with friends.

The game only costs $20, has racked up 4 million players in just three weeks, receiving more than 13,000 positive reviews on Steam.


For more, Polygon has an excellent primer.

More Headlines

BioWare cancels plans for Anthem rework, shifts focus to Dragon Age and Mass EffectAnthem is like The Last Action Hero of games. Great concept, super high expectations, middling (not bad) results, and didn’t earn a lot of money.

A 500GB PS4 May No Longer Be Able to Fit Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War and Warzone

The Death of a Retailer – A sweet reflection on the shuttering of Fry’s.

Destiny 2 Is Ditching Sunsetting – You favorite new weapon won’t be going away.

Google’s Stadia Problem? A Video Game Unit That’s Not Googley Enough – Google had to Wave good-bye to its game development. Tech joke!

That’s it for this week. Thanks for reading!

Stay cool. Have a great summer.

Class of ’90 rulez.

-Chris @40 Bit

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