Introduction, My story

As I’ve grown older, I’ve come to the realization that my childhood obsession with video games has all but died. Before I would spend all my free time doing nothing but playing whatever I could get my hands on, and what time I wasn’t playing I usually spend wondering when I could again. This made school rough for a while, and contributed to how lazy I was when it came to my schoolwork. Once I got old enough, I knew that games had to take a backseat to my future and I all started to wean myself off of them and onto homework. Really, it was a complete change in my life, and I never even noticed it. I always just assumed I loved playing video games, but I just never had as much time for them. There was this sense that I would always come back to playing them when I had some free time again. But that time never came. Life moves on, regardless of if you want it to, and no real chunks of free time came again.

Fast forward a few years and I had decided to join the military. An interesting career move, to be sure, but it was my best option at the time. Once I got settled into my new military lifestyle, an interesting development occurred. I had free time again. A lot of it, in fact. I got stationed on a remote island and found myself with almost all time not at work, being completely free. Now, at this point I was pretty excited. I was expecting myself to get back into playing video games like I loved so much as a kid. My backlog of video games had grown a lot. Having a new, solid job allowed me to buy more games but allowed no time to play them. Of course this would be a great time to finally get to all these great games! It was at this point in my life that I realized that I had reached that complete change in my life I mentioned earlier. I only then realized that I had, in fact, fallen out of love with playing video games. As I popped one game in after another, I came to see that none of them could hold my attention. I just couldn’t bring myself to sit down and play the same game for multiple hours a day. Never again would I rack up 400+hour gameplay times on any game. I just wasn’t having a good enough time playing them. I could hardly say I liked games, at that point. I mean, I was playing all these new(maybe a few years old, but new to me) games that had received plenty of awards and accolades. But I just wasn’t having fun.

So I stopped playing them. But there was always something about them, something about games, that I still loved. Even if I wasn’t going to ever play a game again, I still loved at least researching them. Finding out about new games, how they got reviewed, what people are saying about it. I loved watching trends in games. Watching trends in genres, and in styles of games. Analyzing why Game A is selling well, or Game B isn’t. Following developers and publishers. As little actual gaming I was doing, I craved information as if I was. It was on that remote island that I realized that I didn’t actually like playing games(and hadn’t really for a few years) as much as I liked following the industry and journalism about them. 

Life moved on, I eventually left that island and am now settled happily in Seattle, WA. Since I’ve moved here, I continued my search into video game journalism, following trends and the industry. But I’ve decided that there are a lot of games I still have. And a lot of games I continue to buy. A lot of which I’ve never played at all. So I documented all of them. I put them in a chart and saw what had actually happened over the last 5-6 years of my life in regards to getting behind on my games.

The results were staggering. I had over 350(and growing) games to my name, yet I had beaten about 15% of them(most of which were beaten when I was a kid). I had seriously played less than 25%. That meant that over 75% of my games were either untouched, or I popped in for maybe a few minutes, and quit it. My 14-year-old self would strangle me. I remember playing the hell out of every game I had, because I was too poor to just buy a better one. It didn’t matter if I loved it, or it was just okay. I played it completely. And now I had this giant backlog of games, lots of old and some new, that many claimed to be the greatest ever made. Games that make up Top-100 lists all over the world. Games that I would have squealed over to play as a kid, but never got the chance. Games people have sunk hundreds of hours into and loved every minute of it. They were all in my hands, but I never cared. Even when given all the free time in the world, I still chose to just leave them there.

So here I am today. In Seattle, with still plenty of free time(although not as much as on that island), and I’ve made the decision that I need to go back and play these games. Most I know a lot about. Games that are the firsts of their franchises. Games that are considered the bests of their franchises. Games I’ve heard everyone talking about and referencing, but never played. Some I’ve hardly heard of. Most are iconic, some because they’re so amazing, some because they messed things up so badly. But they’re all fun. There’s a reason people still talk about them, and as much as I’ve read on them, I’m going back to find out exactly why. And I’ve decided to document it all here. So at the very least, I can go back and show myself that I do still love playing games.

 

-Jonathon

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