So home for a month before deployment, and I have to find a way to diffuse some of the stress and anxiety building up in the ol' household.
Walking through Best Buy, I find that the PS2 version of Rock Band is on sale for less than $100. Niner used to be a professional musician, and I've always wanted to learn how to play drums, so what the hell?
OMFG, Best Game Evar.
We have turned into Rock Band junkies, with me flailing away on the drums, and Niner rocking the guitar and vocals.
The absolutely amazing part is just how well suited the user interface on the game is to teaching how to play a drum kit. I actually wish it had a training mode that had teaching exercises from actual music lessons on it, because the UI makes practice fun.
In the space of a week, I've gone from failing out of songs on Easy, to mid-90% scores (on the basic songs) on Expert.
Back in the Stone Age, I played a little trumpet, so I get what it is like to learn to play an instrument - and this is astounding. I'm actually capable of maintaining a couple of different basic rock backbeats, and I'm starting to get a grasp on off-beats, limb independence, and other real-world drumming techniques.
OK, so there's a long way to go before I'll be subbing in for Alex Van Halen, and "Run to the Hills" on Expert seems unobtainable in my lifetime... but I haven't gotten such a sense of accomplishment from a game since GT4.
And I find myself air drumming all the time now....
Seriously, seriously cool.