Sometimes, it feels as if certain games come to exist in my house thanks to pure fate. Most of my games I seek out myself, but Uncharted is one series I never once put my mind to acquiring, and yet, here I stand the owner of not one, but two, entries from the series. The main reason why Uncharted never really appealed to me was because I’ve never been a fan of games that are too…realistic, I guess? There’s just something about games that feature realistic-looking humans or even just good, ol’ planet Earth that don’t appeal to me. (I mean, the Sly Cooper series seems to take place on Earth, but it’s populated by anthropomorphic animals, which is okay in my book.)
When I bought my PS3, it was accompanied by Uncharted 3. I decided to play the game, since I had it in my possession, after all, and while it was pretty cool, I quickly forgot about it shortly after completion. For a short while, I considered checking out the first two games, and then that just never happened. And yet, that was certainly not the last I would see of the series, even if I didn’t know it at the time. It was with the recent purchase of my PS4 that another Uncharted game snuck its way into my gaming shelf once more, the fourth (and final?) entry in the series.
Hello and a happy new year to you all! This is it. The not-so-great mixed-bag that was 2016 has finally passed and the fresh start that is 2017 has finally arrived! There’s much that we don’t know about what this new year has in store for us, but what we do know is that it’s got some exciting games for us! I’ve got more than a few that I can’t wait to play, but the following are those that I can hardly contain my excitement for. Check ’em out! Continue reading Listmas 2016: Most Anticipated Games→
Welcome back, one and all, to our final YouTube Highlights post of 2016! While we started up our YouTube channel in the summer of 2015, 2016 marks our first full year of making and providing game videos, so that’s kind of cool, no? We certainly hope that the trend continues into 2017, because we’ve had an utterly grand time with the channel. And with that, let’s get to this month’s highlights!
Following up on my Listmas post from last week, it’s time to get to the rundown of what games I hope to add to my backlog…err, games library in 2017. And it’s not just brand new games that I’ve got my eye on, but a number of older titles that have skipped my purview or that I once had but sold or traded. Whether or not I’ll actually play any of them next years remains to be seen, but who knows! Granted, I already have and will put plenty on my gaming plate for the new year, but it’s still fun to take a look into the video games crystal ball to see what could be. So let’s get to the list!
Merry Christmas everyone! This most wonderful day of the year is finally here, and with it this list of most enjoyable holiday events in gaming. Today’s a big day and, celebtating or not, I’m sure that you’ve got more than a few things you’d like to do with it. So with that in mind let’s just jump right on in! Continue reading Listmas 2016: Holiday Events!→
For those of us who play video games, it’s sometimes customary to take a little time at the end of any given year to look into what might be on our gaming plates in the next year. To round out Listmas here, I’m giving into this same, fun habit with two posts related to my gaming hopes for 2017. In this first post, I’ll be covering the games from my backlog that I’d like to get through year. I figure that if I can make a concerted effort to play and complete games that I already have, then I’ll be able to supplement my library with new games (the subject of next week’s post). As I’ve already got a couple games in progress already, I’ll cover them first in a quick paragraph, and then I’ll get to the “new” games. So, without further ado, let’s get to the list!
It was this past year that I finally got around to playing all four games of the Sly Cooper series, a series I fell in love with, in fact, within the first hour. The whole stealth gameplay was very new to me, and I also greatly enjoyed the characters. One other area where this game really shines is its locations. You see, the Sly Cooper universe takes place in a world very similar to Earth, except it is populated by anthropomorphic animals rather than people, a fact I found quite entertaining indeed. And so, to celebrate a new favorite series of mine, this list is dedicated to my six favorite locations in the Sly Cooper series. Continue reading Listmas 2016: Top 6 Locations in Sly Cooper→
The holidays are almost here and you’ve decided that you want to host some of your friends at your place for the occasion. You’ve got the food figured out and are confident that everyone will be willing to talk, but what are you all actually going to do at this party? Well, you could always break out some games. Just make sure that, if you do, you go with one of the following instead of falling back on Monopoly or Charades. Your guests will thank you (especially if you all enjoy video games)! Continue reading Listmas 2016: Five Uproariously Fun Multiplayer Games→
When we talk about the value of games, often we discuss replayability. That magic factor or host of factors that drive players to play games over despite having already beaten them. Sometimes it involves following a different plot or playing as different characters. Sometimes it involves collectibles or gathering special items. Sometimes it involves the drive to fully complete a game. And sometimes, a game is just that fun and compelling that it’s worth playing again simply because it exists.
Replaying Yoshi’s Woolly World for our YouTube channel has got me thinking about replayability, and, frankly, and unfortunately, how often I don’t replay my games these days. Because there was a time when I played the same games repeatedly, and it didn’t faze me. Now, with games being big and expansive, simply seeing a game’s credits, whether the game itself is fully complete or not, is nothing short of an accomplishment. But that’s not to say that I haven’t ever occasionally returned to a big, expansive game in order to relive its experience. Or that I haven’t ever returned to those older games that kept me going for so long. With that in mind, here’s my #Listmas list of my top five…err, six favorite games that I like to keep on repeat.
Now that the PS4 has finally joined my gaming family, I have begun the all-important task of acquiring a collection of games to accompany it. What good is a shiny new console without games, after all? Thus far, the PS4 section of my gaming shelf consists only of the Ratchet & Clank remake and Uncharted 4, which is a sad sight indeed. Fortunately, with Christmas coming up, I might just be able to do something about it. And so, without further ado, a delightful list containing the potential games I might add to my PS4’s library (even if some of them are nowhere near being released). Continue reading Listmas 2016: Games to Potentially Pad my PS4 Library→
December is here and that wonderful holiday season feel has come along for the ride! It may be a little early, but I’m already feeling the need to party! Hmm…putting together a real party takes time though, so how about some Mario Party instead? Any takers? Anyone? …Ah well. I’ve long been a fan of the Mario Party games, the N64 versions especially. I don’t know if it’s simple nostalgia or not, but there’s just something about the way these games played that still elevates them above the later entries in my book. Maybe it’s the way the boards always managed to throw wrenches into a games’ outcome. Maybe it’s the simpler game play they offer. Or perhaps it’s that their mini-games are still a blast to play, and the following five are the very best! Continue reading Listmas 2016: Mario Party’s 5 Best Minigames→
Last week a new gameplay trailer for Mass Effect: Andromeda was released during the 2016 Game Awards, and boy oh boy, does it ever look pretty.
It’s one of those trailers that leaves me in awe of the technology of today’s games. It’s almost ridiculous how much power and beauty developers can now fit into any given game, particularly games on this scale. Plus, it’s Mass Effect, which already has an incredibly appealing universe. Over the years, it’s given us some of the most memorable characters and sites in gaming. The trilogy of original games certainly tops my list of all-time favorites.
In this season of giving and good will towards all, it would only be fair for at least one Listmas list to give some attention to the oft under-appreciated sidekicks of gaming. It can be easy for said sidekicks to get lost within the shadow of the more famed hero of the game, but that doesn’t mean they are any less important, for they are so often there to provide the hero with advice and support or, at the very least, give voice to those silent protagonists out there. This is for you, sidekicks. Continue reading Listmas 2016: An Ode to Sidekicks→
Happy December and merry Listmas everyone! That’s right, our favorite list-filled celebration is back once more for 2016, and we’re looking to make our most list-tastic event yet! Just like in years past, we’re challenging our fellow bloggers out there to join us and post lists for anything and everything gaming ! They could be about the best characters, the coolest levels, even something like the top 5 villian mustaches in gaming (if you were so inclined)! Just tag it with #Listmas2016 and we’ll find it and add it to our master Listmas List for all the world to see (or you know, the people who visit here regularly)! We’ve got from now until from now until December 31st, so let’s get listing everyone! As for me, I think I’d like to start things off with a look at some of my favorite snow/holiday themed levels. Continue reading Merry Listmas and 5 More Snowy Levels!→
It sometimes feels as if traditional 3D platformers are a thing of the past. Rareware hasn’t made a true Banjo-Kazooie game since 2000. Naughty Dog has given up Jak & Daxter in favor of Uncharted, while Sly Cooper has more or less ended (it all depends on Sanzaru now…) to make way for Sucker Punch’s Infamous games. It seems the only people who still make more traditional platformers are Nintendo with the Super Mario Bros. series and Insomniac with Ratchet & Clank. But now, with the upcoming release of Yooka-Laylee, it seems like this genre might be starting to make a comeback. While many people are excited for this particular game (including all three of us admins here at UWG), I’m not sure how many people are aware of another upcoming platformer, Skylar & Plux: Adventure on Clover Island. Continue reading Skylar & Plux: Another 3D Platformer is Coming→
Did you have a good Thanksgiving this year? I hope you did. I did, and it (as always) got me thinking about the things I’m thankful for in this life of mine. Me being a gamer, there are more than a few games that I’m thankful for; I’ve even wrote about a few here before. I’ve always singled out favorites; games that I could play again and again. With all the hubbub about gaming hype in the last few months though, I’ve mostly been thankful that I’m not a part of that anymore. I was, I very much was, but something snapped me out of it. That something was Mass Effect 3, and I’m so very thankful what it did. Continue reading Games I’m Thankful For – Mass Effect 3→
Happy Thanksgiving! (Or, happy Thursday if Thanksgiving isn’t your thing.) Though it’s a holiday for us, we’re not taking a break from posting our monthly highlights from YouTube. If anything, we’re more than thankful for our subscribers and supporters there, and here…and everywhere. Thanks to you, you..and YOU! To everyone who’s motivated us to keep writing and playing. We hope that what we offer lends a little joy. 🙂 Speaking of which, November was a rousing good month for us video-wise, so let’s get on with the highlights!
First and foremost, we are incredibly pleased to have introduced this month, care of The Duck of Indeed, two brand new Let’s Plays: Ratchet & Clank (PS4) and The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask! We hope you’ll follow along as The Duck takes on these exciting titles.
I’ve been rediscovering quite a bit in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – Special Edition lately. At first it was just learning how much fun playing with mods could be, but, as I’ve been playing, many of the smaller things that made Skyrim into a favorite have also been finding their way back into the limelight. Little details like ants on a log, the beautiful night skies, and especially the music. Skyrim’s music is easy to take for granted. It’s always there in the background; adding that little extra something that elevates your Dragonborn’s wanderings into something more. They’re all great, but “Far Horizons” stands out as one the best. Continue reading Resonance: Far Horizons→
We all know how important music is in video games. Sometimes, a game’s soundtrack is a character in and of itself, bringing life to a game in ways that a character can’t. Sometimes, a game’s soundtrack plays a supporting role by imbuing scenes with emotion, being a presence without overwhelming the action. Sometimes, a game’s soundtrack can be nearly nonexistent, popping up only when absolutely necessary in order to make the players react. And, no doubt, there are games without soundtracks. When done right, the lack of music plays a key role in forcing the player to focus on the game itself. When done wrong, lack of music in a game can make it feel hollow and incomplete.
So a game and its soundtrack often go hand in hand. We play great games and are rewarded by great soundtracks. But could it ever be that the soundtrack itself is the reward?
For those of you out there who have been following the Five Nights at Freddy’s series, either by playing through them yourself or by watching others do so on Youtube, you will know that a fifth game has recently been released that greatly diverges from the usual FNAF formula. While each of the original four games had enough new features to differentiate them from their brethren, they were all generally the same. You are largely stationary (or, in the case of FNAF 4, confined to a single room, even if you can move between four specific spots), and you must follow a series of rules to keep the animatronics at bay. Wind up the music box to keep the Puppet in its box. Listen for breathing in the hallway and hold the door shut if you hear anyone outside. Flash Foxy with your flashlight until he leaves. And the list goes on and on. You’re basically tasked with staying calm and keeping a level head under pressure because if you panic and forget the rules, odds are, a jump scare’s coming your way.
FNAF 5: Sister Location, however, is a huge departure from the original collection of games, and when I first watched the trailer and any videos speculating on what the game would be about, I was really excited. The game looked so different, and I really wanted to see this fresh take on the FNAF series. Would we get a new, interesting story that sheds even greater light on the confusing, but still very compelling, FNAF lore? Would we finally get to freely roam this new facility, employing even more interesting strategies in order to avoid the killer animatronics? Well, be prepared for spoilers (largely for the first half of the game), because I will be answering those questions and more in the upcoming paragraphs. Before we get started, let me begin by saying that FNAF 5 did some things very right, while other aspects of the game ended up being, well, disappointing. While I did not play the game myself, I believe my viewing of the series on Youtube proved more than sufficient to give me an accurate idea of what the game is like. Continue reading FNAF 5: Where Sister Location Went Wrong→
When’s the last time you thought about Kingdom Hearts? If you’re like me, it was probably the last time you saw a preview for the latest remaster/re-release that Square-Enix decided to roll out. We are now up to Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue (a bit of a mouthful isn’t it?), and still have Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX, a re-re-release of the PS3 re-releases for PS4, due out early next year. As a fan I find this all to be rather annoying. It feels like I haven’t played a new *Kingdom Hearts game in 10 years. Yet, at the same time, it’s a relief to see Square-Enix put so much effort into making sure gamers are still aware of the series. It means they still care and that Kingdom Hearts III is still coming. I haven’t stepped into Sora’s shoes for a very long time now, yet somehow I still love these games; all because the originals managed to be the most endearing games I’ve ever played. Continue reading Why I Still Love Kingdom Hearts→
It’s time once again for the Saturday Video Round Up, bringing you the best trtailers and gameplay from the previous week. Even though we’re just about halfway through the month and most, not all, major AAA titles are now out on store shelves, new trailers are still coming in fact and furious. Here’s a small taste of what waits for you below.
For you Mass Effect fans out there, you may have realized that this past Monday was N7 Day, a celebration for all things Mass Effect. As usual, BioWare led the celebration charge and released new details on the upcoming Mass Effect Andromeda including the first cinematic trailer for the game. Prepare to drool in all it’s visual glory!
It’s launch trailer central this week as two games that have been featured almost on a weekly basis are finally launching. That’s right, come check out the launch trailers for Dishonored 2, then go play it because it’s out now and Watch_Dogs 2 which hits store shelves early next week.
I’ve also got new videos for Steep, Persona 5, The Last Guardian and so much more after the break, so come check out this week’s batch of trailers!
Late last month, Rockstar dropped its first teaser trailer for the brand new Red Dead Redemption 2. A series of persistent rumors had popped up some months before hinted that a sequel to the very popular Red Dead Redemption was in the work. It seems that, thankfully, they turned out to be true!
In a way, I feel like I’ve been playing Red Dead Redemption for a several years. I first played it in 2013, and then I played through it again, fully, earlier this year. But during the between years, I’ve played the game sporadically, just to pick up missed side quests, do a little treasure hunting, or spend a little time meandering through its wondrous landscapes on horseback. The game is just one of my favorites, from the story to the music to the environments, and I simply need to revisit it every now and then.
If you’ve been following along with recent gaming news, you’ll no doubt be aware of the fact that the mystery of the Nintendo NX has finally been revealed as Nintendo’s newest console, the Nintendo Switch, named for its ability to, well, switch between a handheld and a console. If you haven’t already seen it, you can find the trailer here:
Video from Youtube User: Nintendo
Pretty interesting, no? Well, we here at UWG certainly thought so. To celebrate the Switch’s reveal, we shall be providing you all with our initial thoughts on Nintendo’s most recent innovation in a special collaboration post. (And, as always, please provide your own thoughts in the comments below!)Continue reading A Collaborative Look at the New Nintendo Switch→
Console players can now enjoy modded content without having to switch to playing on PC; what a time to be alive! With the launch of Skyrim: Special Edition, console gamers can now experience a taste of what the PC community has been enjoying for years, and I have to say that we really didn’t know what we were missing. I’ve only had a couple of days to explore Skyrim with user-made extras so far, but I’m already impressed! Continue reading Playing Skyrim with Mods→
Though Halloween has passed, our Zelda-ween celebration isn’t over, as I’m offering up the final post on our final topic: unintentionally spooky moments. If you’ve not already caught Hatm0nster’s and The Duck excellent posts this week, you should…because they are excellent! As we’ve already discussed, the Zelda series offers up much more than simple adventures involving a hero and a heroine. In fact, Link’s travels are fraught with peril. And as beautiful as the games are in story and design, they readily showcase the scary, the nightmarish, and the things that go bump in the night. But these spooky highlights are meant to be spooky. The ReDeads are meant to frighten. The Arbiter’s Grounds is meant to be a challenging and scary place. The unflinchingly unanswered question of “who or what is Majora?” is meant to leave us in the lurch. But what about those moments, those characters, those sections of the games that don’t seem like they’re supposed to be scary, but they become so because of what we infer from or impose upon them? Here are a few of my intentional picks for unintentional scares in the Zelda games.
Ah, here we are, already in the final week of Zelda-Ween. Anytime I get to recount my experiences with this wonderful series is a good time indeed, even if it involves the many things that have scared me down the years. This week’s topic, however, forced me to put some extra thought into what I would write about, as there are a lot of spooky things in the Zelda series that are fully intended to be scary. But what scared me that wasn’t actually meant to, I pondered aloud to myself. And then it hit me, with all the force of an enraged chicken. Or a cucco, if you’re so inclined.
Yes, chickens, that fluffy medium-sized bird many of us enjoy eating. But in the Zelda universe, the chickens are vicious creatures that can snap a person’s neck without so much as blinking…. Okay, that’s not entirely true. As scary as Hyrule’s poultry can be once angered, the chickens in the series do not attack you unless you antagonize them first. So if Link suffers a chicken-related death, the player is to blame, not the chicken who killed him. Nevertheless, once these chickens are incited into a rampage, they prove to be an unstoppable force that will immediately make you regret what you had done. While I’m not typically the kind of person who picks on things in video games, there have been occasions when I have bothered the chickens in Zelda, if only out of sheer curiosity to see for myself what a wild force of nature they can be. Here are a few of my experiences with them. Continue reading Zelda-Ween: Unintentionally Spooky…Chickens?→
You know, I was originally going to end this month of Zelda-ween with a look at the Happy Mask Salesman from Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask. He’s unusual, mysterious and also quite creepy (in Majora’s Mask at least); definitely worth a closer look. However, Zelda-ween is about the creepiest things to be found in and around Zelda, so it’s only fitting that we take a look back at the creepiest thing to come out of the games: the “Ben Drowned” creepypasta. Continue reading Majora’s Scariest Story→
We interrupt our regularly scheduled Zelda-ween celebration to bring you some gaming videos! Even though we’ve got a good thing going, we must review our month in YouTube, because it’s been a great one; one that was filled with excellent gaming moments of all sorts. So let’s get to the rundown!
We’re going to start this week with that puffy, fluffy, vacuum cleaner of renown..it’s Kirby! The Duck of Indeed’s playthrough of Kirby’s Return to Dreamland really “chilled out” in October as the gang ventured into the snowy stages of World 4.
It’s week two of our celebration of all things spooky and scary from The Legend of Zelda series…it’s Zelda-ween! And this week we’ve been talking about our favorite scary dungeons. Both Hatm0nster and The Duck have given us their picks, and now it’s time for me to take a stab (errr…not literally). You might think that there aren’t particularly scary places left from which to choose, especially since we’ve already covered the series’ ultimate spooky dungeon: The Shadow Temple from Ocarina of Time. But when you really think about it, the Zelda series is chock full of dungeons that, while they may not be downright ghoulish, possess their own particular brands of the macabre. So, on we go here with my picks for three troublesome treks through the worlds of Link and Zelda!
Last week, we discussed the many spooky enemies that reside in the land of Hyrule (or Termina, as the case may be). Well, oftentimes, creepy creatures live in creepy places, and when you think of scary locations in the Zelda series, more often than not you think of the dungeons these games are known for. Not only are these dungeons filled with trials meant to challenge Link’s mind, but our green-clad hero is often forced to put his own courage to the test, as well. Yep, as the title suggests, we’re covering creepy dungeons, and today we’ll be discussing which dungeons in particular leave the Duck quaking in her boots. Continue reading Zelda-Ween: Top 3 Creepy Dungeons→
What place immediately comes to mind when you hear the phrase “creepy Zelda dungeon”? It’s the Shadow Temple from Ocarina of Time isn’t it? Its image probably jumped into your head before you even finished reading that phrase. It should. The Shadow Temple was designed to be the most chilling experience of the entire game, and I’d say it’s arguable that we haven’t yet seen a Zelda dungeon that’s topped it in pure creep factor. However, while the Shadow Temple is the most overtly scary place in the game, it’s not the only location in the game that exudes a sense of the sinister. In fact, in terms of being downright foreboding, I believe that the Spirit Temple can (and does) give the Shadow Temple a run for its money. Continue reading Ocarina’s Other Scary Temple→
This week, to start off our Zelda-ween celebration, we’ve been discussing Zelda’s scariest enemies. Hatm0nster took on the unexplainable Majora, and The Duck ran down her Top 5 list that includes some of the series’ most seminal and terrifying enemies, such as the ever-present ReDeads. Now it’s my turn! I’ve also got a Top 5 list: my top five most frightening foes from the games I’ve played in The Legend of Zelda series (that is, from Ocarina of Time to Spirit Tracks.) None of these enemies are on quite the same level as ReDeads and Dead Hands – they aren’t necessarily the stuff of bad dreams – but they are some of the ones that I least looked forward to encountering, mainly because they were just downright creepy. With that said, it’s time to start with the list!
Even though The Legend of Zelda series doesn’t typically come to mind when you think of horror, I’m sure all fans of the series have noticed that these games have more than their fair share of creepy creatures. In fact, whenever I think about scary enemies in video games, more often than not, my thoughts wander to the Zelda series and the many unearthly creatures Link must face. But rather than simply list the creepiest enemies, why don’t I list five spooky denizens of Hyrule that stand out to me the most. So let’s get started, in no particular order. Continue reading Zelda-Ween: Top 5 Most Notable Scary Enemies→
How many enemies in the Legend of Zelda series do you consider to be actually frightening? There are plenty of bizarre and unsettling creatures to encounter: ReDeads, Wall-Masters and Dead Hands perhaps being the most notable. They creep us out and perhaps even inspire a little shiver, but can we really call them frightening? I don’t think so, because their core idea is understandable. A ReDead is just a zombie, a Wall-Master is just a mindless monster in the form of a hand, and a Dead Hand is an amalgam of reanimated corpses driven by hunger. We know what they are and what drives them, so they stop short of being truly frightening. Even the main villains of the series, though terribly powerful, don’t succeed in frightening us because they’re characters. They have goals and desires we can understand. This can be said about just about all Zelda enemies save for one: Majora. There is no explaining Majora, and that scares me. Continue reading Majora Scares Me.→
If you hadn’t caught on already, we here at United We Game hold The Legend of Zelda series close to our hearts. We also enjoy this time of year when thoughts turn towards celebrating Halloween, especially in games. This year, we decided to combine the two into a new posting theme: Zelda-ween! Over the next three weeks, Hatm0nster, The Duck, and I will be offering up spooky posts on spooky themes in the Zelda series: enemies, dungeons, and unintentional scares. It’s going to be spook-tacular!
If my most recent posts are any indication, I’ve had Destiny on the brain for the last several weeks or so. That hasn’t changed either; I’m thinking about how I want to to tweak my Iron Banner load-out even as I write this! Still, even with Destiny dominating the gaming portion of my brain, I have managed to pull myself away from it from time to time. Lately, those times have been to play Mario Party with my roommates (what could possibly go wrong). Mario Party being the way it is, things can, and often do, get ugly pretty quickly. I’m telling you, if we hadn’t been playing in another dimension, I doubt we’d still be living together. Continue reading Mario Party and Alternate Dimensions→
The weekend is here and your reward is a brand new edition of the Saturday Video Round Up. As usual, it’s bringing you the best trailers and gameplay from the week that was. Let’s get to it!
You’d be forgiven if you forgot about Ghost Recon Wildlands, as Ubisoft has been showcasing a number of its other games pretty heavily lately like Watch_Dogs 2 and For Honor. Wildlands is stealing the spotlight back this week as the team at Ubisoft Paris released brand new gameplay showcasing stealth and tactics to complete a mission.
With the game almost a month away, trailers for Dishonored 2 are becoming a weekly occurrence. The same is true for this past week as fans get an inside look at how the Arkane team came up with Karnaca and its different look and feel from the first game.
I’ve also got new videos for Mafia III, Paper Mario Color Splash, Watch_Dogs 2 and so much more after the break, so come check out this week’s batch of trailers!
When midnight struck on January 1st, I swore to myself that this was going to be a year without resolutions. While I’m not exactly a stickler when it comes to this yearly habit, I’ve almost always made, if not lists of solid resolutions, then lists of things I’d like to accomplish within the span of a new year. But this year, I decided it was high time I just wing it. No lists. No resolutions. No goals. I decided that this year I was going to be like water. To go with the flow. To adapt when necessary and to remain otherwise at peace.
And I was perfectly pleased with my decision. Only then, during a New Year’s Day gathering, I was asked the question of all questions: “So, do you have any resolutions?” Cornered with egg nog in one hand and a plate of what I figured were my final food indulgences of the year, I quickly stammered “to play more games!” and then went on about my business of getting to those indulgences. Except the plate sat full while I pondered my strange answer.
Maybe I shouldn’t say “strange” exactly, because as a resolution, “play more games” is a perfectly fine one. It’s simply that I thought I had made up my mind about resolutions. But apparently, I hadn’t. Because I could have blurted out any number of standard answers. “To get in shape!” “To be nicer!” “To get organized!” But I didn’t. I specifically said to and play and more and games all together in a sentence.
So there I sat letting my poor egg nog getting all warm as I wondered what that meant. Because “to play more games” could take a couple different shapes. It could mean that I should endeavor to play a wider variety of games, to get out from under my heavy RPG/platformer/puzzler blanket to take on some FPS and RTS fare, perhaps. It could also mean that I want to aim to play games more often, more regularly, maybe. It could also mean that I wish to add more games to my library, to expand my collection, perchance. It could also mean that I desire simply to play more of the games that I already own, cutting back the backlog, possibly. And it could also mean all of those things combined. Really, it’s quite a complicated resolution.
The thing of it is that I don’t actually know what the resolution “to play more games” would look like for me in reality. Sure, I wouldn’t mind expanding my gaming horizons and playing more often than I’m currently able. Of course I’d like to both cut down on my backlog and add to my library. And the more I thought about it, the more I realized that with this line of thinking, I was turning gaming into…well, a chore. Something I needed to do because I felt that it needed to be done. And that’s not what gaming is, or, it’s not what I want it to be in my life. In recent years, at times, it’s become dangerously close to that, and that’s of my own doing. For most of my life, I had integrated gaming into the nooks and crannies of my free time pretty well . It was a hobby, a respite, a place to belong. Gaming is still all those things now, but I’d be a fool to dismiss that it’s also on the verge of becoming a duty, i.e. I write about games, therefore I MUST play them! And that’s not how it should be. I play games because I love them, not because they are part of a routine.
Okay fine, as I thought to myself, staring at my now warmed-over drink and plate of goodies, if I was going to take on a resolution involving gaming, I decided that it was simply going to be “to play games,” not play more games, because that implied that I wasn’t already doing it enough. Maybe I’m not, but that’s a result of having a life that’s (ful)filled with other ventures, other hobbies and activities, other chores and duties. So this year, with gaming, I will be like water. I will go with the flow. I will adapt when necessary and remain otherwise at peace.
If you took on any gaming resolutions this year, share them in the comments!