Two months since my last post. Yikes. This week I let my second account sub expire from LotRO. I’m just not motivated to grind more pointless endgame gear.
Elder Scrolls Online is releasing its High Elf update this week, following its Morrowind update. I almost re-installed just for the elf experiences, but I talked myself down from the ledge. Every time I re-install ESO, I find the interface, navigation, and character system to be so frustrating.
Ironically, un-playability is much more immersion breaking than a more complicated, usable interface. So I re-installed Fallout 4, which is more suitable for Bethesda’s design imperatives, and I’m playing that a bit.
Last night I reached rank 15 in Hearthstone playing Even Warlock, after giving up on Odd Rogue. That’s about all for gaming.
Stocks And Market
The U.S. stock market is not dead yet. I lost some money hedging against a collapse in the last month, but I’ve felt forced to push back into the market in the last few weeks with the profits I previously took in Tencent and NVidia.
Tencent is in the news right now for its ownership of Fortnite. It’s funny that Fortnite is sort of a name drop now by pro analysts on CNBC, so they can sound like they know what they are talking about. I LOL at these people, honestly.
So I basically traded my relatively risky amount of pure Tencent OTC pink sheets stock for more GAMR ETF, and a solid position in the EMQQ ETF (Emerging Markets Tech). Tencent is in both of those. EMQQ also has concentrated exposure to companies like NetEase, JD.com, Baidu, and Yandex, which I would like to own but don’t merit positions of their own. So.
JD.com (JD) is my Kitty watch of the week. I may buy into this on a trade in the next few days. It’s on the verge of breaking out of a big downtrend, and CNBC today reported a lot of option calls being bought. Albemarle (ALB) is also in a big, possibly buyable pullback for various reasons.
The risk is that there is a lot of China problems around the big T. I mean, President Trumpetface. So you could easily buy big on a JD price breakout, and then get slammed the next day because of a tweet.
I also picked up the TAN (solar) ETF, on the day that California announced all new houses have to have solar panels. I also bought a half position in LH (Labcorp), which is U.S. based healthcare lab service, not very ‘Amazonable’, and not very exposed to the strengthening dollar. LH was a great pick so far.
Lastly I pushed a modest half position into Visa, because I’ve finally concluded that Americans just aren’t giving up their credit cards anytime soon, despite Apple Pay, Google Pay, and various challengers.
I still think crypto currencies per se, in themselves as they exist now, are fool’s vapor to invest in, and I can’t believe the genre has like three ETFs dedicated to it.
Visa is the first to go if I feel forced to trim positions, however. There is a lot of financial risk in the system, and Visa has run very big, as noted by analysts this week.
Sony is taking massive stock price hits recently, most recently noting their PS4 hardware is in decline, and their next Playstation version is at least 3 years away. Still, it could be a buying opportunity.
In my last post, I noted accolades from Jim Cramer about Activision Blizzard. This week I learned Cramer has sold his ATVI (like I did also). But now he admits he may have sold too soon, when asked about the upcoming Black Ops 4 offering a Fortnite-like game mode.
As a final note, if you look at a 5 or 10 year chart of the U.S. stock market, it still looks scarily ‘toppy’ even after a 4-month pullback and consolidation. Recession risks are increasing. Europe and Asia had some weak data come out in the last couple weeks.
It isn’t a situation to be aggressive. It seems prudent to stay patient until some crap really hits the fan. I am still over 50% in cash.
Personal Game Project
This is an enormous amount of work. I’m currently writing an illustrated short book on botany. For the school library. In my game.
So I’m re-learning a lot of botany that I learned in college with my Biology degree.
Like in Elder Scrolls, reading the book gives you a permanent stat bonus. In this case, to your Scholar profession. Unlike in Elder Scrolls, you have to actually read the book. And answer thoughtful challenge questions correctly.
So I’m working my full time job, and I’m writing like 2 pages of this botany book per day during the last week. At this rate, developing my game is going to be a fine retirement activity for me in a few decades.
Still, I really enjoy the writing of non-fiction, learning things, and illustrating. My game is about learning to be an elf (probably a bit more so than learning witchcraft/wizardry), so I need to learn botany. This has been my #1 preoccupation in the past few weeks, other than moving into a new apartment.
I want the entire game lore – world and characters in it – to basically be in the school library. So when I need to look up something, like a geographical location or major NPC, I’m going to the library just like a player.
Also the library is haunted. And you won’t be alone. There will be a library fairy, or someone else there. I tend to be a lonely person, so I can feel what I need in the game in terms of companionship, and making the NPCs seem alive. I’m basically making the game I want to play.
That’s about it for now. I noticed Justin Olivetti is up to his old elf-hating ways. On your knees and scrub for those elves, Justin! Scrub it!
Kudos to Justin though for writing a fantasy novel. Wow. I try to squeeze a lot of creative and gaming energy into life compared to most people, but I live alone with no pets, no kids, nothing. I don’t know how he finds the time for everything he has going on.
So E3 is coming very soon, starting June 12. Will we see some amazing new releases? I hope so.