Editorial, Feature, Gaming, Video Games

Alessio & The Beastly Backlog: Shovel Knight

Welcome to another entry in my on-going series: Alessio & The Beastly Backlog. Last week we talked about The Astronaut’s The Vanishing of Ethan Carter, which was a first-person exploration / crime-solving simulator game with a whole lot of story to drive the player forward. This week we have the opposite type of experience in a myriad of ways: Shovel Knight, a fun side-scrolling adventure game more akin to Zelda II and Megaman that has very little narrative other than just enough to get you motivated to get through its beautifully designed stages and boss encounters.

Editorial, Gaming, News, Video Games

The Misadventures of Tron Bonne: Now Available on PSN

After catching a glimpse of this, often forgotten, PSOne game in a toy store many years ago and not having the foresight to purchase it, I now have the great fortune, as do you dear reader, to digitally purchase as many copies of The Misadventures of Tron Bonne as I’d like!

The Playstation Network is now allowing users to purchase a copy of the unfortunately named Megaman Legends prequel for $4.99 for use with the Playstation Vita and the Playstation 3 systems. This will come as a relief to many as most used copies of the game run for anywhere between $90 – $150 on eBay or Amazon, and you can pretty much forget getting a shrink-wrapped copy for less than $250.

For those not in the know, The Misadventures of Tron Bonne follows the titular Tron Bonne in a prequel adventure set in the Megaman Legends universe. She must collect 1,000,000,000 zenny to buy back her family’s freedom from a rival air pirate named Mr. Loathe. Not having gotten too far into the game, this is as much as I can say about it, but you better believe that I’ll have my formal run-down of this title in my Beastly Backlog series soon as I’ve been wanting to check this out for quite some time. Now to casually delete that .iso file that found its way on my a friend’s computer recently.

Editorial, Feature, Gaming, Video Games

Alessio & The Beastly Backlog: The Vanishing of Ethan Carter

Hey guys! I’d like to usher in this new wave of GeekTime articles by starting a series that helps me help you help us all. In short, I have a massive backlog of video games inching ever closer to drowning me in physical disks, cartridges, and cases as well as in digital downloads, server space, and hard drive real-estate. I want to put a sizable dent in this mountain’o’media to keep myself from paying for more games that I don’t have time to play and to help me generate some content to push out to you, our lovely hypothetical audience.

Feature, Gaming, Video Games

Shin Megami Tensei IV Review

What in the world is up with Atlus and towers? If it isn’t the Karma Temple in Digital Devil Saga, Tartarus in Persona 3, or the entire premise to Catherine, it’s Naraku in Shin Megami Tensei IV, a sort of reverse tower whose spatial relationship with the player character transforms throughout the narrative. Atlus, Team Persona, and anyone else responsible for Shin Megami Tensei titles seem to have some sort of fascination with towers, towering objects, and the phallic.

Now, it has been some time since I worked on a written piece for the site, but I’ve been so deeply fascinated with Shin Megami Tensei IV for the Nintendo 3DS that I felt the need to post a review for the title. It’s something about the level of depth that the atmosphere of the game world has, and the way that the remixed soundtrack (which consists of some previous series tunes) combines with that atmosphere and the game mechanics that make for a very dreamlike experience that often gets abruptly shattered with a nightmare scenario.

Did Atlus add another layer to the tower that is their popular Shin Megami Tensei franchise, or did they finally have a catastrophic misstep by releasing a numbered entry in their flagship series exclusively on a handheld?

Editorial, Feature, Video Games

Ten Crimes That Were Blamed on Video Games

Every day, violent crimes are committed with seemingly no rhyme or reason. In these cases, it is only natural that we desire to find a culprit in order to make sense of a senseless crime. Unfortunately, we can also be quick to jump to conclusions and put the blame on an easy scapegoat instead of trying to find a true root cause. Media, such as movies, comics, books and TV, have been a scapegoats for violence for years. With its ever-rising popularity and recent releases of games like Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty, video games have become the most recent victim. Here are a few crimes that video games have taken the heat for.

Feature, Gaming, Video Games

4 Ways the PS4 Could Still Die

As the E3 hype is winding down, the Sony praise returns to sane levels, and the dust from Microsoft’s reversal of their Xbox One DRM policy settles, we can take a step back and look objectively at the next generation of consoles. We’ve seen the two megacorporations’ offerings for several generations now, and we’ve observed issues that both companies have struggled with in the past. Neither console has been immune to public ire. From the 360’s Red Rings of Death to the PS3’s security breaches and buggy ports, it’s easy to scold both. Sony has the gaming community wrapped around their thumb in a series of brilliant PR maneuvers. PS4 preorders hilariously outnumber the Xbox One. But the PS4 can still be dead in the water in two years’ time. Those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat…

1. The Playstation Network

Sony has proven in the past that they don’t have it all together when it comes to online play and security. Download speeds feel like they’re orbiting a black hole, and can’t be left to their own devices in the background. Cross-game chat is nonexistent. Credit card info is dumped and leaked en masse. This happened recently, and now there’s a whole new console. Hopefully you get what you pay for, as PS+ will offer online play for a fee a la Xbox Live.

2. Third Party DRM

Sony couldn’t stop EA’s online passes, and they will continue to be powerless to do so. They bore witness to tremendously increased PS4 support following Microsoft’s disastrous policies, which will scare them silly with any luck.

3. Hardware Failure

Earlier this week, Sony released a PS3 update that bricked many systems before it was pulled. It went largely unnoticed by those unaffected because first of all, the attitude towards Sony right now is electric. You can feel a buzz whenever you mention Sony online. Secondly, Microsoft did Sony a favor by announcing their about-face policy change which hogged attention. Had Microsoft waited, this story may have been a bigger deal.

4. Hardcore Gaming Focus

In this economy, a $400 dedicated gaming machine doesn’t make sense for every household. A $400 box that plays modern games and integrates with your media…now that is something that appeals to far more households. Once the Xbox One drops in price, it’s easy to see the PS4 being overshadowed in the market.

 

Everyone wants the two companies to succeed and co-exist. Those that don’t still haven’t recovered from their poor childhood. Godspeed, Sony and Microsoft! Shower us with the glorious next generation of consoles!

Feature, Video Games

E3: GeekTi.me’s Best of Show

E3 was a magical week full of games and wonder. After having the weekend to mull everything over, I’m back at you with my personal picks for E3 best in show just like I promised. Let’s get cracking!

Ubisoft did that thing again. Last year, they introduced us to the world of Watch_Dogs. Here we are a year later and that's one of the holiday season's highly anticipated games. That same year later and Ubisoft shows us The Division. The game has been classified as a third person RPG with shooting elements by the developers, but I like to classify it as an "Open World Third Person RPG Shooter," which happen to be the coolest combination of words when describing a game. The story concept is great, the persistent world is great, the interface is great, the graphics are great, and I can't wait to play this absolutely stunning game.
Ubisoft did that thing again. Last year, they introduced us to the world of Watch_Dogs. Here we are a year later and that’s one of the holiday season’s highly anticipated games. That same year later and Ubisoft shows us The Division. The game has been classified as a third person RPG with shooting elements by the developers, but I like to classify it as an “Open World Third Person RPG Shooter,” which happen to be the coolest combination of words to use when describing a game. The story concept is great, the persistent world is great, the interface is great, the graphics are great, and I can’t wait to play this absolutely stunning game.
Of course this game had to make the list SOMEWHERE, but despite the fact that I'm biased in regards to Kingdom Hearts...it honestly was the biggest surprise I saw that E3. Sure, we got Mirror's Edge 2 and Battlefront III, but those were games that had hints dropped about them in the run up to the event, even if they were slightly unbelievable. Versus XIII (now Final Fantasy XV) was also a nice shock, but it was a game that was supposedly being developed. We weren't supposed to hear anything definitive on KHIII until XV was released. For them to throw Kingdom Hearts on the tail end of the Final Fantasy XV announcement/re-branding was surprising and truly heartwarming.
Of course this game had to make the list SOMEWHERE, but despite the fact that I’m biased in regards to Kingdom Hearts…it honestly was the biggest surprise I saw at E3. Sure, we got Mirror’s Edge 2 and Battlefront III, but those were games that had hints dropped about them in the run up to the event, even if they were slightly unbelievable. Versus XIII (now Final Fantasy XV) was also a nice shock, but it was a game that was supposedly being developed. We weren’t supposed to hear anything definitive on KHIII until XV was released. For them to throw Kingdom Hearts on the tail end of the Final Fantasy XV announcement/re-branding was surprising and truly heartwarming.
Despite the fact that it was announced last year, Watch_Dogs had a strong showing at this year's E3 as well. With every little ounce of information released about this game, it's proving more and more that it's going to be THE game to be playing this holiday season. Ubisoft had a hit on their hands when they announced The Division, but Watch_Dogs has been in their arsenal. Have no doubts that it's a heavy hitter.
Despite the fact that it was announced last year, Watch_Dogs had a strong showing at this year’s E3 as well. With every little ounce of information released about this game, it’s proving more and more that it’s going to be THE game to be playing this holiday season. Ubisoft had a hit on their hands when they announced The Division, but Watch_Dogs has been in their arsenal the entire time. Have no doubts that it’s a heavy hitter.
Sequel
Not only does Metal Gear Solid V look absolutely amazing visually, but it’s the one sequel that I saw that took the biggest chance with its formula the entire event. The game is going open world with realistic weather and passage of time. An open world doesn’t sound like what I imagine from a Metal Gear game at all. I will say, the stealth in this looks very good. You have to react with almost lightning fast reflexes on occasion. Reflexes worthy of the legendary Snake. They’ve even changed the tagline from “Tactical Espionage Action” to “Tactical Espionage Operations,” perhaps accentuating the steath aspect even more. The story sounds pretty good and the elements it explores, such as the ideas of illegal torture and child soldiers (mind you in a much…deeper and visual way than the previous games) are intriguing and not for the faint of heart. And, of course, there has to be some kind of strange mystery, this time manifesting itself in a boy who is rapidly healing while Snake and some other men extract some kind of package from his abdomen. All in all, a great game. Now let’s just hope Kojima is pulling a fast one with this whole Kiefer Sutherland thing.
I wasn't going to do genre categories, but I feel like this is the one I should do...y'know...given there were about a billion of them shown. My choice for winner has to be The Crew for the sheer scope of what they've done with the game. The large world, the way you interact with friends, the crazy customization options, and all the different types of driving you can do make this the must have racing game of E3.
I wasn’t going to do genre categories, but I feel like this is the one I should do…y’know…given there were about a billion of them shown. My choice for winner has to be The Crew for the sheer scope of what they’ve done with the game. The large world, the way you interact with friends, the crazy customization options, and all the different types of driving you can do make this the must have racing game of E3.

 

But now that I’m doing genre categories…sure. Let me toss four more at you.

 

From the stunning graphics, to the cool powers, to the awesome main character and interesting world, I have to pick Second Son for this.
I chose Second Son for this for a few simple reasons. The first being the gameplay, which looks like it’s improved so much on the normal inFamous style. It was always fun in the first place, but the new powers that Delsin has add a new sense of fun and freshness to it. Delsin himself seems like a very interesting character as opposed to the often cardboard Cole. The story and background also look great. On a superficial level, the graphics look absolutely stunning. It’s really hard to NOT pick this one.
Destiny's showing at the Sony conference did something to me that doesn't often happen. It took me from a mild feeling of "this is interesting, I guess" to "I need this in my life!" Destiny is truly a fantastic shooter. I love the loot drop system. I love the customization options. I love the sandbox world. I love the public events that show up every so often. Destiny is really going to be the FPS to beat this season.
Destiny’s showing at the Sony conference did something to me that doesn’t often happen. It took me from a mild feeling of “this is interesting, I guess” to “I need this in my life!” Destiny is truly a fantastic shooter. I love the loot drop system. I love the customization options. I love the sandbox world. I love the public events that show up every so often. Destiny is really going to be the FPS to beat this season.
I don't feel like I should have to explain this one. It's prettier Skyrim except multiplayer...why is that even a question?
I don’t feel like I should have to explain this one. It’s prettier Skyrim except multiplayer…why is that even a question?
Final Fantasy XV (previously Versus XIII) looks like a whole lot of fun. Despite being the most major departure from the original formula yet (in the main series, at least…not counting XI and XIV). There’s a lot more action RPG in it than traditional, but Noctis’ powers look incredibly interesting, and the verticality that some of the fights can take look fantastic. Even further, the story sounds incredibly interesting. Even way back when it was still Versus XIII, it still seemed very intriguing. I can’t wait to get my hands on this one.
Final Fantasy XV (previously Versus XIII) looks like a whole lot of fun, despite being the most major departure from the original formula yet (in the main series, at least…not counting XI and XIV). Hey. Maybe that’s just what the series needs. There’s a lot more action RPG in it than is traditional, but Noctis’ powers look incredibly interesting, and the verticality that some of the fights can take look fantastic. Even further, the story sounded great way back when it was still Versus XIII. I have faith that it hasn’t changed. I can’t wait to get my hands on this one.
Transistor, from Supergiant Games (creators of Bastion), looks really cool. You play as a singer named Red, who controls a sword called Transistor...a sword that had tried to kill her minutes before she held it. Once she obtains the sword, an enemy called The Process tries to end her and take the sword. The game looks very interesting and offers a blend of action and turn based strategy. When Red's action bar is full, she can freeze time and execute moves in super speed after planning them out. It looks really fun, and I can't wait to play Supergiant's follow up to Bastion. Mind you, this may have won the category, but E3 showcased a lot of great indy games. I imagine that this generation, they'll get a lot more of the exposure they deserve.
Transistor, from Supergiant Games (creators of Bastion), looks really cool. You play as a singer named Red, who controls a sword called Transistor…a sword that had tried to kill her minutes before she held it. Once she obtains the sword, an enemy called The Process tries to end her and take the sword. The game looks very interesting and offers a blend of action and turn based strategy. When Red’s action bar is full, she can freeze time and execute moves in super speed after planning them out. It looks really fun, and I can’t wait to play Supergiant’s follow up to Bastion. Mind you, this may have won the category, but E3 showcased a lot of great indy games. I imagine that this generation, they’ll get a lot more of the exposure they deserve.

 

And now for some awards that are…a little bit different.

Octodad: Deadliest Catch is the sequel to DePaul University's entry into the 2011 Indpendent Games Festival's student showcase. In this game, you play as Octodad. He's an octopus trying to disguise himself as a human. He has a family and everything. This game is so bizarre. It's an exercise in what happens when you take browser game QWOP and put it in a 3D plane...with an octopus as your main character. This isn't to say it doesn't look funny and entertaining. It's just...weird.
Octodad: Deadliest Catch is the sequel to a student project. The first game was DePaul University’s entry into the 2011 Independent Game Festival’s student showcase. In this game, you play as Octodad. He’s an octopus trying to disguise himself as a human. He has a family and everything. This game is so bizarre. It’s an exercise in what happens when you take browser game QWOP and put it in a 3D plane…with an octopus as your main character. This isn’t to say it doesn’t look funny and entertaining. It’s just…weird.
Whether or not you approve of Sony and the PlayStation brand, it's hard NOT to approve of Shuhei Yoshida, who's passion and charm make him one of the best higher ups to watch on stage. The man has an infectious smile and...who are we kidding. Have you heard him speak? Only Shigeru Miyamoto himself could fight Yoshida's adorableness, but with Nintendo absent from the keynote stage, it was Yoshida's time to shine.
Whether or not you approve of Sony and the PlayStation brand, it’s hard NOT to approve of Shuhei Yoshida, who’s passion and charm make him one of the best higher ups to watch on stage. The man has an infectious smile and…who are we kidding. Have you heard him speak? Only Shigeru Miyamoto himself could fight Yoshida’s adorableness, but with Nintendo absent from the keynote stage, it was Yoshida’s time to shine.
Last generation, we were inundated with floods of zombie related gaming media. This generation, despite still getting a few zombie games, we have to crown a new king for games to flood us with. A few runners up include mechs, massive open worlds, and racing games, but it's hard to skip social connectivity as the key point for most developers this generation. That's not a bad thing, and it probably won't get tiring like zombies did, but it was in virtually everything this E3. Racing games, shooting games, single player games that turn into multiplayer games...it's around every corner. Just goes to show, no matter which console you go with...you better have some friends around.
Last generation, we were inundated with floods of zombie related gaming media. This generation, despite still getting a few zombie games, we have to crown a new king for games to flood us with. A few runners up include mechs, massive open worlds, and racing games, but it’s hard to skip social connectivity as the key point for most developers this generation. That’s not a bad thing, and it probably won’t get tiring like zombies did, but it was in virtually everything this E3. Racing games, shooting games, single player games that turn into multiplayer games…it’s around every corner. Just goes to show, no matter which console you go with…you better have some friends around.
On the last award with "Social connectivity," I could almost make the phrase "we're blurring the line between single player and multiplayer" the winner of this. I won't though, because I'll do you one better. The winner of this category is "second screen experience" because everyone is pushing it. The PS4 is pushing it with the Vita. The One is pushing a lot of Smart Glass stuff. The WiiU...well...clearly. So many games offer connectivity with tablets. Everyone is going crazy with the second screen experience. It's so weird, though it's all mostly pretty awesome.  Also, I suppose this is more of a buzzphrase, but who's judging, right?
On the last award with “Social connectivity,” I could almost make the phrase “we’re blurring the line between single player and multiplayer” the winner of this. I won’t though, because I’ll do you one better. The winner of this category is “second screen experience” because everyone is pushing it. The PS4 is pushing it with the Vita. The One is pushing a lot of Smart Glass stuff. The WiiU…well…clearly. So many games offer connectivity with tablets. Everyone is going crazy with the second screen experience. It’s so weird, though it’s all mostly pretty awesome. Also, I suppose this is more of a buzzphrase, but who’s judging, right?
Who cares about my feelings or your feelings towards the console. The true fact is that nothing I heard the entire week got as many cheers as Jack Tretton announcing the price of the PlayStation 4. Their used and always online policy got significant cheers, but the simple fact that Sony was undercutting the Xbox One by $100 was astounding and almost unbelievable. How were they supposed to make money if they were selling it that low (in a world where $399 is low...what's happening...)? Gamers didn't care. It was just a welcome sight to see.
Who cares about my feelings or your feelings towards the console. The true fact is that nothing I heard the entire week got as many cheers as Andrew House announcing the price of the PlayStation 4. Their used and always online policy got significant cheers, but the simple fact that Sony was undercutting the Xbox One by $100 was astounding and almost unbelievable. How were they supposed to make money if they were selling it that low (in a world where $399 is low…what’s happening…)? Gamers didn’t care. It was just a welcome sight to see.
LeBron James. He's a love him or hate him celebrity. He's on the cover of NBA 2K14, which prompted 2K to say "let's have LeBron talk to his digital self and pretend like it's a surprise he's talking to his digital self as if he didn't record the dialog." It was a bizarre way to promote the game, which was strictly through graphics that are good, but not really good enough given the crazy advancements other games THIS generation have made. All in all...LeBron James. The end.
LeBron James. He’s a love him or hate him celebrity. He’s on the cover of NBA 2K14, which prompted 2K to say “let’s have LeBron talk to his digital self and pretend like it’s a surprise he’s talking to his digital self as if he didn’t record the dialog.” It was a bizarre way to promote the game, which was strictly through graphics that are good, but not really good enough given the crazy advancements other games THIS generation have made. All in all…LeBron James. The end.
I was with a group of friends watching the EA press conference right before we recorded this episode of TOPS. While watching the sports game section, we noticed that they all had some kind of technological buzz word. NBA had BounceTek. Madden had True Step. Fifa did not seem to have one, but leave it to a friend in my group to shout "so what is this one going to be? Accu-Balls or something?" We proceeded to guffaw for many moons. I know nobody cares...but I do, and that's really the most important thing. (I would later come to find out that they had one called Pure Shot, but Accu-Balls is much funnier.)
I was with a group of friends watching the EA press conference right before we recorded this episode of TOPS. While watching the sports game section, we noticed that they all had some kind of technological buzz word. NBA had BounceTek. Madden had True Step. Fifa did not seem to have one, but leave it to a friend in my group to shout “so what is this one going to be? Accu-Balls or something?” We proceeded to guffaw for many moons. I know nobody cares…but I do, and that’s really the most important thing. (I would later come to find out that they had one called Pure Shot, but Accu-Balls is much funnier.)

 

 

So ends GeekTi.me’s small look at E3. It’s been such a great week full of fantastic games. I can’t wait for the coming months, but my wallet sure can.

Feature, Video Games

Breaking Backlog

The picture you see at the top of this post is something all gamers are familiar with. The stack varies in size from person to person. It also has several different names, but they all stand in tribute to the inability of a gamer to focus on several tasks at once. It’s a backlog, and it is the deadliest thing imaginable.

The first step in eliminating the terror that is the dreaded backlog is to first discover the reason behind the existence of backlogs in the first place. For those of us who focus on games like hawks, we scope out new games and we want new games. The new hotness comes out, and we get the new hotness, and we love the new hotness. We forgo every other game we have to play the new hotness and we completely forget about the old hotness that we once considered the new hotness. I’ll stop saying hotness now, but the point is that gamers have a very short attention span. If we see a game we like, we get the game despite the fact that we have at least one other game that did the exact same thing to us months…weeks…maybe even a single week ago.

The goal is to terminate the backlog. There are a few ways to do this (potentially…if you aren’t WEAK!)

There are two types of gaming experiences out there. Each one branches out into a bunch of sub-experiences, but they all fall under two. You have solo gaming experiences and social gaming experiences. Now, solo gaming experiences are fine and wonderful. They allow for the most immersion and really let you attach yourself to a character. They are, however and unfortunately, one of the leading causes of backlogs. If you don’t get entirely immersed in a game while having a solo experience, it could lead to boredom and eventually…well…you get where I’m going with this.

This isn't a posed stock image at all! No way!
This isn’t a posed stock image at all! No way!

Something as simple as bringing somebody along for the ride with you could be all the medicine you need to rebuild the bridge between you and your game. It could be a gamer friend wanting to try out the game. If the campaign has co-op, more power to you both. Play through it that day and let the rivers of friendship wash over you. Even if it’s single player, the concept of “taking turns” was introduced long before we ever had video games.

This step is especially useful if you have a non-gamer friend or significant other who is suddenly interested in the game you’re playing. Simply having this person around to watch you play could add a layer of extra interest to it for yourself. If they ask a question, for instance, you are required to think about the game more and put yourself further into the world to pull an answer out for them. And if they take turns with you or play a co-op game with you, guiding them through the world is also adds a to the experience as well. The goal of the shared experience method is to keep you so interested in an older game via a second party that you don’t wander out and buy a new game.

Of course, you won’t always find someone interested in sharing the experience, so the act of self control has to come into play. Sometimes, as far as buying cool looking games go, gamers don’t have a whole lot of that. It’s simply a matter of developing it. Don’t buy games, no matter how much you want to. It sounds difficult and crazy, but it might just have to be something you do. Don’t buy another game until your backlog is wiped out completely. You could be one of the lucky ones that only has to take down two or three games. You could be like me and have your backlog sitting in the low double digits. You could even be worse off than that. The level of agonizing self control all depends on the number of games you have to roll through, but you did this to yourself. Face the consequences.

That actually sounds a little harsh. Simply destroying your habit of buying the latest and greatest game isn’t something that gets handled overnight. If you have the willpower, then do the step above. It might be good for you to develop that self control. If simply quitting cold turkey isn’t something you can necessarily do (but just imagine the good feeling you’ll get buying a new game with no backlog behind you), incentivize the whole thing.

What's in the BOOOOOX!?!?!
What’s in the BOOOOOX!?!?!

Find a box or some sort of container with a lock that opens with a key. Put a small sum of money in the box to fuel your commitment to the process (a simple amount can be $5.) At this point, lock the box and give the key(s) to a friend for safekeeping. The box, you can hide anywhere. You can’t get into it anyway. From this point, every day you fail to complete a game on your backlog, add more money (let’s say $1.) This encourages you to play your games, since you have a box of inaccessible money that grows by the day. Once your backlog is taken care of, you can get that box opened and use that money for whatever you wish. You could probably even use it as part (or whole. Who knows how long you were doing this for) of the cost of a new game to reward yourself. If you want to add an extra layer of motivation to the whole thing, I have just the idea for you. If you cave and buy yourself a new game, be it brand new or bargain bin used, the person you gave the key to gets all the money you put in your box to date. Now, obviously, you could lie and not admit it…but then, you’re the worst person ever and you’re not really trying to help yourself out of the backlog pit.

Use this time as an opportunity to develop your gaming multitasking skills. Play a couple games at once. If you have designated game time, divide that time among two or three games. Some people can do that, but if you find your senses are being overloaded, it’s OK to drop down to one game. If you find yourself overwhelmed by multiple games at one time, focusing on beating one at a time is much better than quitting.

Don't cave to sales and don't cave to whims!
Don’t cave to sales and don’t cave to whims!

Now, if any of these things work to help topple your backlog once and for all, you’ve got a job ahead of you. The job is to prevent the backlog from happening again. There are a couple things you can remember and put into practice as far as prevention goes. I know a lot of gamers (at least myself, personally) buy games on a whim. A game will go on sale one week, or they’ll catch it used for a really great price and snatch it up. STOP THAT. That’s a big reason why you have a backlog. Buying on a whim is the leading cause of game disappointment. Only the dangers of over hype can compete with it. I understand there’s an amazing sale on this game, but the only time you should really cave on a sale is if you’re buying from Steam (which, funnily enough, is the one type of backlog no one can help you with…not even yourself). You may spend $60, but at least you’re getting 80,000,000 games. That console game sale may look tempting, but you’re spending $10 less dollars for a game that you might not even like.

This brings another layer into the buy on a whim category, which is research. If you’re reading this site, you probably have something with you at all times that has access to Google. If you see a game you’ve heard whispers of, but never researched yourself…do that. Wikipedia usually has a list of “important” game scores in the “Reception” section of a game’s page. Use that. If you’re a hardcore gamer that researches the games you KNOW you want, you also have your go to websites for reviews. Check there too. Also, if you’re in a game store, don’t be afraid to ask questions about a game.

Also, make sure you don’t over book yourself. Games release every Tuesday (in America, at least, and with some odd exceptions.) If there are two games coming out the same day (or even a week apart) don’t get them both. Decide which one excites you the most and don’t buy the other one until you’ve beaten the first one. It’s such a deceptively simple idea, but it’s one that gets lost really easily.

I hope any of these things can help you break your backlog once and for all. Now, if you’ll excuse me. I have a game from early 2011 to beat!