Gaming Backlog – Burning a Hole in Your Drawer

Jan 8, 2012

Don’t you hate it when you’re sitting down comfortably on your couch, enjoying the latest game, only to get the evil eye from not one but several games you haven’t opened yet? Staring at me now are games dating back as far as 2002. I still haven’t opened Metal Gear Solid 4. In total, I have 8 sets of eyes that I sometimes cover up with a pillow…life is hard. And it’s going to get harder.

2012 looks to be a great year for gaming, and it will likely grow your backlog list. Right now many of you are in a galaxy far, far away convincing Storm Troopers these aren’t the droids they’re looking for. And at $15 a month, your gaming hours are not well spent on other titles. And sometime this year we’re going to see Diablo III. Talk about a sinkhole – the return of one of the best selling titles ever on PC. More to come this year including Mass Effect 3, Halo 4, Bioshock Infinite, and the PS Vita. But there is good news! I’ve found a way to get through the backlog war, and my tips are below.

  1. Get over monogamy: it’s simple queuing theory. You’ll never get through that backlog if your input is greater than your output. You have to play more than one game at a time.
  2. Know your strengths: some of us are driven by an engaging story, while some want unlimited options. Pick at least 2 games to play interchangeably, and ensure that at least one is a perfect fit for you. When you hit a wall in the other games, you always have the one you enjoy the most to go back to.
  3. Know your genres: begin by separating the games by logical categories such as RPG or FPS. There are inherent components of specific genres that will help you manage your time. For example, both Dark Souls and Skyrim can absorb 80-100 hours of your time. Choosing only these two won’t help chop down your backlog. Instead try a long RPG like Skyrim, and a shooter like Gears of War 3 – assuming you enjoy playing these genres.
  4. Don’t be a hero: we all love to see the ending of a story. But when it comes to games, your time is highly valuable. Think of what you can do while not gaming – volunteer at a homeless shelter, rebuild a car, spend time with your family and friends. Consequently, it’s critical you drop any game you are not enjoying. Maybe it’s a permanent breakup or just a few months; but don’t hesitate – you deserve to enjoy gaming!

I hope this helps everyone. In last week’s podcast (episode 14) I guaranteed I would be through my entire backlog by Christmas. I’ll be sure to post my progress on the forum. Share with us your tips for getting through a gaming backlog!