27 Feb 2016

My Steam Backlog Plan

I recently looked at the list of games I have in my Steam library. I currently have 537 games owned, with 416 games that haven't been launched even once. Altogether, this means 77% of my games are unplayed. This is bad; really bad. I don't know whether to blame the PC gaming market for their cheap sales, must-have bundles and the "need to get this" mentality, or blame myself for falling for this.

When I was a kid, gaming was a luxury. I didn't have any money, and the deals weren't as enticing as they are now. Usually, it would be several months between buying new games, and I had to buy them at full price for £30 or £40. I own an Xbox 360 and I think my entire library on there came to about 50 games, which I would have considered quite a lot back then. But it's nothing compared to 537.

What's worse, is that I keep replaying the same old games over and over again. I have 1,750 hours played in Payday 2, my most played game. I have an average of several hundred hours in games like Skyrim, Dead Rising 3, Killing Floor and Age of Empires. Instead of moving on to new grounds, I keep going back to these games. Games with replayability are seen as a good move, but sometimes they can cause these bad habits in gamers. It's about time I put a stop to this.

My plan is simple: I am not going to buy a new game until I have completely finished my Steam backlog. That means I have 416 games to get through before I can buy a new game. If I am not enjoying a particular game, then I'll skip it but only after giving it a chance. 2-4 hours of play should suffice. If a game doesn't run on my PC, then I will have no choice but to skip it, but my point remains that I should have about 400-odd games to get through. With my adult responsibilities, it'll take years to do but I'm determined to finish this. I barely have time for games these days, and if I do it's usually a couple of hours in the afternoon or evening. But it'll give me some kind of cathartic release to finally play that one game I've been putting off for years.

So, what's next? I hope to give updates and reports on here. Don't expect any reviews of new games for a while. I used the last of my Steam funds to buy World's Dawn and Stardew Valley; two Harvest Moon clones that recently came out. I'll probably review them sometime soon. I'll also probably write some discussion posts about certain aspects of video games that I'm thinking about. All-in-all, this is an exciting motivation for me.

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