Monday, September 28, 2015

K'done: misdirected cowl

Looks like I need a new video game knit.



Pattern: misdirected cowl, by Liz Abinante
Yarn: madelinetosh tosh dk, in Corsage (pink), and a one-off (grey)
Needles: 4 mm / US 6

I started this cowl way back in June, as a video game knit - the Mister was going to play Catherine, a game in which the protagonist (Vincent) finds himself faced with a choice: further his relationship with his longtime girlfriend Katherine (who is pushing him towards marriage), or pursue something new and exciting with a sexy young thing he meets at his usual bar one night, named Catherine. I thought this pattern would be well-suited to the whole this-way-or-that-way aspect of the storyline, so I set about making it so.

A problem presented itself pretty early on - the Mister didn't particularly care for the gameplay, which is basically a stair-climbing sort of puzzle: the player needs to make adjustments to a large collection of blocks to transform them into a staircase-like structure that he can use to escape the dungeon he finds himself. Can't take too long though - there's a beastie of some sort climbing up from below and demolishing blocks as it goes, and if it catches up to you, it's game over. The beastie can also sometimes launch attacks from a bit of distance, so extra care is sometimes needed. This isn't his usual kind of game, but he wanted to finish the story, so he asked me to set the knitting aside so I could pay extra close attention to try to help him with his block manipulation. (This didn't always go so well. For one thing, I'm not super good with these sorts of puzzles. For another, his perspective is not my perspective, so sometimes I'd say Pull out the one from the back and he'd totally pull out a different block, because he interpreted back as behind Vincent and not what I'd meant, which was that block that is further towards the back of the pile and we'd be hooped. Sometimes, the time crunch led to me saying super helpful and specific things like Move that one there and he'd have no idea which block I meant, and he'd guess, and guess wrong, and then we'd be hooped.) So not a lot got done with Catherine.

Then he moved on to Infamous: Second Son. Again, there's some character development throughout the gameplay that is in the hands of the player: depending on the choices the player makes, the protagonist (Delsin) either becomes famous for his heroic acts, or infamous for his nefarious misdeeds. I chugged along with the gameplay, but there were moments when I just couldn't knit, there was too much going on. (I often get a little too invested in these storylines. There may have been a moment in which I teared up a bit.) Gameplay wrapped up, but the cowl was still not done.

Next up: Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. This one I was not so invested in. The gameplay was fairly quick, and the first person shooter perspective messed me up - I would get a wee bit motion sick if I tried to knit during playtime. I put a few rows in, but nowhere near as many as I was expecting. This game differed from the previous two, in that there's no choice the player makes about how the story proceeds or the character develops. It did have something in common with the previous two, though: Troy Baker. Troy Baker provided the voice of Vincent. Troy Baker provided the voice of Delsin. Troy Baker provided the voice of Mitchell - though Mitchell didn't really talk much, we mostly heard him grunting with pain or exertion. Still, Troy Baker. I joked that this was turning into the Summer of Troy Baker. (We had previously heard his voice in Bioshock Infinite and The Last of Us. Dude is busy.)

Sadly - or maybe thankfully, depending on your perspective - the next game ensured we did not experience the Summer of Troy Baker. The Mister put Tomb Raider (the latest reboot - might even have been the Definitive Edition) in, which does not feature Troy Baker as anyone, never mind Lara Croft, and we worked our way through that. Again, there were moments in which I really couldn't knit, but I got a fair bit of the cowl knocked out by the time we had completed the game - and we actually went back to find all the little hidden doohickies for 100% completion. This is not something that happens often! I guess that's a testament to how much we liked it.

Then, we moved on to Assassin's Creed: Rogue (again, sans Troy Baker). I wrapped up the cowl with that one. We're still playing it (so no spoilers please!), but we're close to the end, I think.

But. Um. Back to the cowl.



I liked the concept of this cowl, but not enough to actually follow through on it completely, for I am lazy and avoid weaving ends wherever I can. The pattern as written has you change colours several times, but I did a half-and-half cowl - I knit with colour #1 until I didn't have enough for another repeat of the lace motif, then switched to colour #2 and did the same. Once I had my two halves complete, I seamed the cast-on and bound-off edges together with mattress stitch. So mine is perhaps not as misdirected as intended - more of a bipolar cowl, I suppose.

The knitting was fun, but it felt like it ran rather long, or maybe that's just me and my mild aversion to knitting back and forth with no shaping. I have no problem with plain knitting in the round, and I have no problem with knitting back and forth when there's shaping to keep track of, but a straight shot seems to sort of wear on me. I have no explanation for this. Consequently, I was quite pleased when I was done with this one.



My cowl probably has a larger circumference than if I had followed the pattern more closely - I haven't measured to check - and it is indeed a rather tall cowl. I have yet to really wear it, but I think that day is coming pretty soon. All in all, I'm quite pleased with this one.

Which is good. Because not all is super awesome in my own personal knitty-land.

But that's a story for another day. For now, laundry beckons.

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