It wasn’t too long ago that I used to be a different kind of gamer. The kind of gamer who spent every moment of free time they had on finishing their next game. The kind of gamer who would play games through multiple times, and then revisit them every year to relive the experience. I was the kind of gamer who scoffed at those who had backlogs and didn’t finish the games they played. “How foolish!” I’d say, “How can they spend their money on a game only to never finish it. How wasteful!” I’d think. Oh if the old me could see me now. I’ve become almost the opposite of how I used to be, and the change was probably inevitable.
Adult gamers have all sorts of advantages over their younger counterparts. We have more money, we have more access, and we technically have more freedom to do what we want, when we want to do it. However, younger gamers tend to have one thing that adults don’t: time. Wonderful, glorious time. Time to burn. Time to waste. Time enough to actually finish a game in a few days and move onto the next one. Having a surplus of time does wonders for keeping the backlog at bay. Of course that’s not the only factor.
Due to my current circumstances, I find myself needing to keep up with modern gaming more than ever before. I need to know what games like Vampyr or ONRUSH or God of War are bringing to the table, and I need to understand why they affect the industry the way they do. They only way to truly understand a game is to play it, so I do. I no longer have the time to just sit down and go through them though, so finishing them is a matter of months instead of weeks, and that’s if I finish them at all. It doesn’t matter how much I like a game and want to see its conclusion. There’s always new stuff I have to pay attention to, so onto the shelf it goes. It’s quite crazy if you think about it. Here I am with less time for games than I’ve ever had, and I somehow have to squeeze in hours for more games than ever before! I suppose it’s a nice problem to have as far as problems go, but it still enough to make one’s head spin!
I feel like I’ve learned a lesson over the past year or so. The more one gets involved with games and especially with writing about them, the less time they’ll be able to spend with the games they enjoy most. Hopefully this won’t always be the case, but for now it is. So, I guess I kinda understand those who only take bites out of their games rather than enjoying the whole thing. Sometimes it’s just not possible, and that’s when your backlog starts to form.
What is it that keeps your backlog around? Think you’ll ever be able to conquer it?