It was a problem that we all wanted to have as kids. Having so many video games that we wouldn’t get bored. At least that was the argument I would give my parents whenever we were out shopping. Now that I am an adult I am facing a new problem. The backlog. Games that I have bought with the full intention to play them yet haven’t touched because of various reasons. Sometimes life gets in the way and I have to deal with that before I play anything, and other times its because I got a new game (or several) and the new games took over. Whatever the reason, this happens to a lot of retro gamers, especially those who collect to play. Now of course the age old argument of “why don’t you just play the game” is true, but now that I am an adult, I have the responsibilities that come with it, and that means I don’t have the time I did when I was younger (something a ton of gamers deal with). My weekends are filled to the brim with other things I have planned or need to do so even getting 2 hours of uninterrupted play is a gift. Of course I am not the only retro gamer that has this problem, and granted this is not a bad problem to have. However, it can be a real pain when you know you really want to play a game that you’ve been hunting down for months, only to have it on the back burner when you get a different game that you’ve been waiting even longer to play.
Now I’m guilty of buying games when I have a huge backlog, I feel like we are all guilty of that in one way or another. The games in the picture above are games that I’ve either barely started or haven’t even touched yet. Something that has helped me to stop buying games, especially the newer, modern games, is to wait until you have finished your current game or games. For retro games I follow the philosophy of if you see it, you can afford it, you should get it. Especially since that game may not be where you found it or it’ll be more expensive the next time you come across it. I’ve done this when I came across games that I’ve been wanting to play for ages and I found them for a great price. Even though I knew I wasn’t going to play them right away (like a few of the games above), I knew I would play them eventually, even if that eventually turns out to be a year or so after I buy the game. The modern games will luckily be there for a while and they may even go on sale in the future, which will help with the bank account.
Now what if you have a huge backlog already and have all the games you want for the time being? Well there’s a way to help with that as well. Something that has helped me is plan what I want to play, or at least switch up what I’m playing. For example I have quite a few JRPG’s waiting in the wings for me to start and these are 40-60 hour games with no side quests. After a while I’ll want to play something else so what I do on days where I can play all day is play one game for a few hours, take a break, then play a different one. As much as I love JRPGs I do get a little tired of them form time to time and would switch it up by putting in a shooter or platformfer. Rotating games every day helps with the backlog as well since you’re playing more games but the drawback is that you’ll beat them slower. Of course these are just what I personally do, and it has happened when I’m playing a game I get sucked into it and I forget the other game I was going to play entirely, but once you do beat one game and move onto the new one, it’s a great feeling.
Like I said earlier, having a huge backlog of games is something that I hate/love having. I love having a huge variety of games to play, but hate not having the time to play them, and game companies keep coming out with collections of games or making classic games I loved as a kid available for download on the digital store. Just recently I was able to get the classic DOOM and DOOM 2 for my Switch. The games were on sale for $1.30 and I had enough Nintendo coins (think of the coins as a Nintendo Switch rewards system) to get both for free. Being a PSPlus Member also gets you 2 free games every month. I was able to get the Uncharted collection for free as well as the complete Bioshock trilogy for nothing. The mini consoles I have also have a good chunk of games I want to beat, some are quicker to beat like Mega Man X and Sonic 2, but then I have long story driven games like Final Fantasy VI (they call it III on the SNES Classic for reasons), Phantasy Star IV, and Secret of Mana. Which I also now have the Collection of Mana which has all the current Mana titles and I do want to try and beat them before I get the new HD remake of Trials of Mana for the Switch. It can get overwhelming at times, realizing how big my backlog is. Even after freaking out a bit, I take a breath, relax and realize that I have some great games waiting for me in the wings. I also have games ready to play for my YouTube channel (search Fake Nerd Podcast if you want to check it out) and that’s going to help with my backlog. As I’ve said before when I collect games I collect to play, and even with a large backlog I’m looking forward to playing these games. Even if it takes me a while to do that.