*tap, tap* Is this thing on? Good. Hello, everyone! It's good to see so many familiar faces; I have to admit, I was a little worried that I wouldn't recognize anyone. It's been a while. I was afraid everything would have changed.

I've spent a lot of time away, and it's given me the opportunity to reflect on a lot of things. Why I play video games, whether or not I truly enjoy them, whether or not time spent playing is time wasted...all these things, and more. I've spent some time doing the things I didn't take the time to do because of video games. I've written. I've exercised. I've done arts and crafts. I've read. I've watched more than a few movies. And I'll admit that the break has been nice, in many ways. I've accomplished a lot of things and grown as a person.

But through it all, I've missed you guys. Sure, I've played here and there over the past year, and when I haven't, I've used the excuse that my PC didn't want to run half of my favorite games to explain my absence. It's a lame one, I know. I don't even know how many computers I've built at this point. Making my own work is simply a matter of determination, if the cash flow is there. Truth is, when we moved, my gaming home was no longer what it used to be. I enjoyed it less. Fewer people had stuck around that I enjoyed playing with, so I found new things to occupy myself. Then came the spate of console games I wanted to play--Gears of War, Halo, even some Call of Duty--and my newly-built gaming rig sat, cold and unused, in the study night after night.


When news of the 1.51 patch for Battlefield 2142 came out, I was tentatively hopeful. I didn't much care about the changes to the game. What I cared about was whether or not the people who made the game one of my favorites at TG would return for a reprisal of some of the great times we used to have. The tactics, the strategy, the teamwork, the occasional laughs--those were what I hoped I would find. And in the fifteen minutes at a go I was able to play this past weekend, I was not disappointed. In fact, it was enough to motivate me to get things working properly on my new rig. (My GTX 460 should be here by this weekend.)

Will this trend last? Who knows? We've all had some time off, so it might...or might not. Either way, I fully plan on enjoying what's here, now, and letting tomorrow work itself the only way it knows how: in time.