2013 - 12 month pile thread. Hello New Year, good bye pile!

Garden Ninja wrote:

I just keep a document with the backloggery BB code, and run Find/Replace before posting. It's only slightly time consuming the first time; shouldn't be hard for updates, though I will probably just do deltas again.

Here's the BB code and corresponding icon, btw

:UP: IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
:U: IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unfinished.gif)
:N: IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/new.gif)
:B: IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/beaten.gif)
:C: IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/completed.gif)
:-: IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/null.gif)

I'll be in my IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/beaten.gif)IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unfinished.gif)IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/new.gif)IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/completed.gif)

Rough draft on my active list for 2013, and moving forward. I've had a few I've bought this year as well, but they will drip into the vault. One of the main reasons I am splitting the pile. If I'm buying games to go straight into the vault, why purchase?

I'll add in iOS and Steam (Mac/PC) when I get some time away from the kids when I can work off the desktop with the dual screens. There is only so much you can do on an iPad screen.

Active List:

PS2
Okami
Shadow of the Colossus

Xbox 360
Batman Arkham City
Blaze Blu: Continuum Shift Extend
Darksiders 2
Dark Souls
Deadly Premonition
Deus Ex: Human Revolution
Dirt 3
Dishonored
El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron
Final Fantasy XIII-2
Forza Motorsport 4
Kingdom of Amalur: Reckoning
LA Noire
Lollipop Chainsaw
Portal 2
Power Up Heroes
Rage
Rayman Origins
Resonance of Fate
Rise of Knightmares
Sonic Generations
Saint's Row: The Third
The Witcher 2

Series that I want to 'complete' and the pieces I have.
Halo: 3, Reach, ODST, Combat Evolved.
Mass Effect: Original level 60 run, 2, 3.
Gears of War: 2 and 3
Dead Space: 1 and 2
Bioshock: 2, Minerva's Den, Infinity
Tomb Raider: Anniversary, Underworld, reboot.

Luggage wrote:
Eleima wrote:
jdzappa wrote:

This is just a suggestion but I'm wondering if this year we could add a "played" title to the pile list. This would be for unplayed games in your Steam account/bookshelf that you at least gave a good faith effort in trying even if you don't finish it.

Agreed. There are games like Terraria and Binding of Isaac that I really wanted to like and play, but ended up just getting frustrated and never finished or played for more than an hour. I figure, at least I launched and gave them a shot.

I think this comes down to how you feel about the game once you have given it a fair shake. For example, in 2013 I logged Diablo 3 as abandoned, because I came away pretty disappointed after 60h of play and none of my characters reached level 60 or the end of hell difficulty. Guild Wars 2 I also logged as abandoned, because I played it to level 30 and felt overwhelmed by choice, but undermotivated by the "sameyness" of it all. World of Warcraft I put a shameful ~200h into and I have no problem logging that as complete, because I got the point they are trying to make with MoP and I am thankful the grindyness turned me off MMO's for what I hope will be forever. Then again there was sparkleponies, which I logged as abandoned, because a joke only carries itself so long and even building a script that clicked the rainbows for extra money while I was away at work didn't help the fact, that I am not the demographic for this game.


As for myself, I seem to have my 2013 work cut out for myself. Currently playing 4 games, 30 owned and unplayed, 6 anticipated new releases and 21 want to buys. That's 61 games and with an average playtime of 25h, we're looking at ~1500h or 2-3 years at my current rate of hours/month.

I also changed my approach to impulse or hype purchases. I'll allow myself 4 wildcards, with 1 unlocking every quarter. They can be used for undeclared titles, be it new releases or old stuff on sale. Since I went through the 2012 and 2013 releases list on Wikipedia, I should have everything I am interested in on my list anyway. This way, I can purchase a maximum of 1 undeclared title in the upcoming Christmas sale, but up to 3 undeclared titles during the summer sale, if I am resolute until then.

Maybe I'm deluding myself, but I feel perfectly fine logging a game as "beaten" in Backloggery if I've seen the credits roll or I've hit max level in an MMO. For example, I beat Diablo 3 in nightmare and wrote it off my list as beaten - after that the game becomes either a grind nightmare or pay-to-win. I'm about to finish my trooper line in SWTOR and will declare that game "beaten," even though I doubt I'll do much more with the game. I think you're well within your right to mark both Diablo 3 and WOW off your pile list.

The good news is Backloggery has the completed award for going the extra mile (beating Diablo in inferno for example). That's what I did for Guild Wars 1 when I unlocked all my hall of monuments rewards and completed all the expansion storylines.

TLDR - Unless you're independently wealthy, very few adults have the time to complete every achievement or beat every game on the hardest difficulty possible. If you're holding yourself to the same expectations you had in say college, you're not going to make any progress.

jdzappa wrote:

Maybe I'm deluding myself, but I feel perfectly fine logging a game as "beaten" in Backloggery if I've seen the credits roll or I've hit max level in an MMO. For example, I beat Diablo 3 in nightmare and wrote it off my list as beaten - after that the game becomes either a grind nightmare or pay-to-win. I'm about to finish my trooper line in SWTOR and will declare that game "beaten," even though I doubt I'll do much more with the game.

Count me among the delusional then, I guess. I thought "Saw credits rolls" was a pretty obvious guideline for having beaten the game. Even something like Diablo 3, where most people seem to treat Nightmare as the "real game", I would have marked as beaten after beating it on any difficulty.

Garden Ninja wrote:
jdzappa wrote:

Maybe I'm deluding myself, but I feel perfectly fine logging a game as "beaten" in Backloggery if I've seen the credits roll or I've hit max level in an MMO. For example, I beat Diablo 3 in nightmare and wrote it off my list as beaten - after that the game becomes either a grind nightmare or pay-to-win. I'm about to finish my trooper line in SWTOR and will declare that game "beaten," even though I doubt I'll do much more with the game.

Count me among the delusional then, I guess. I thought "Saw credits rolls" was a pretty obvious guideline for having beaten the game. Even something like Diablo 3, where most people seem to treat Nightmare as the "real game", I would have marked as beaten after beating it on any difficulty.

Taken from the Backloggery FAQ. (bolding by me)

IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/null.gif) Null - Not counted in your backlog statistics but will appear in your totals. Useful for titles which aren't tradional games with a conclusion or main objective.

IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unfinished.gif) Unfinished - No significant accomplishments.

IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/beaten.gif) Beaten - The main portion or objective of the game has been completed. Usually marked by the defeat of a final boss and/or viewing of the credits.

IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/completed.gif) Completed - Must meet the following requirements (where applicable):
Overall game completion percentage is maxed out
All extras are acquired
Every game mode is finished
Beaten on the hardest difficulty level
Optional levels/dungeons and bosses are beaten
Best ending viewed
All major item-based upgrades are collected

Minor items and lists not included in the above are irrelevant
The highest rankings (i.e. S-Ranking a level) aren't needed unless necessary for one of the above requirements.

IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/mastered.gif) Mastered - A personal challenge designed to be extremely tough, usually beyond the scope of built-in gameplay difficulty.

Garden Ninja wrote:
jdzappa wrote:

Maybe I'm deluding myself, but I feel perfectly fine logging a game as "beaten" in Backloggery if I've seen the credits roll or I've hit max level in an MMO. For example, I beat Diablo 3 in nightmare and wrote it off my list as beaten - after that the game becomes either a grind nightmare or pay-to-win. I'm about to finish my trooper line in SWTOR and will declare that game "beaten," even though I doubt I'll do much more with the game.

Count me among the delusional then, I guess. I thought "Saw credits rolls" was a pretty obvious guideline for having beaten the game. Even something like Diablo 3, where most people seem to treat Nightmare as the "real game", I would have marked as beaten after beating it on any difficulty.

I'll join the "delusional" crowd as well. Currently tackling Batman, and there is no way I'm going through the arduous process of picking up all Riddler trophies and solving all his riddles. No way, no how, seems like a chore more than anything. And if that means I don't to mark it as "completed", that's just fine by me, I'll settle for "beaten". And I'm perfectly fine with going through a game on normal or even easy.
Incidentally, I've just beaten Batman: Arkham Asylum today, maybe there's hope for me yet!! Not sure what to tackle next...

I've a question though. What about games you tried out for a couple of hours (or less), but just couldn't get into and dropped after a while. Do those count as "null"?

Eleima wrote:

I've a question though. What about games you tried out for a couple of hours (or less), but just couldn't get into and dropped after a while. Do those count as "null"?

That's what I do. (That, or I delete it altogether.) It's something I like about Backloggery: it compels me to recognize that no, I am NOT going to circle back and try this game again, I really ought to get rid of it.

That can't be Monkey's entire list, because if it is - I may have surpassed his pileness and become the premiere 360 hoarder on GWJ...

Will make it a point this week to update my post.

Put me in the delusional group as well. If the credits roll, it's beaten. Unless it's a fake roll. Achievements don't count toward beaten/complete either. Once the game is at 100% or more it's tossed in the completed pile. I use Null for anything that doesn't have a well-defined end goal like Wii Sports, Nintendo Land, and Maxis titles. Much simpler that way.

Eleima wrote:

I've a question though. What about games you tried out for a couple of hours (or less), but just couldn't get into and dropped after a while. Do those count as "null"?

I just delete them. If they're not going to be played, they're not part of my collection/backlog, even if I own them forever and ever, as with a digital purchase.

shoptroll wrote:

Put me in the delusional group as well. If the credits roll, it's beaten. Unless it's a fake roll. Achievements don't count toward beaten/complete either. Once the game is at 100% or more it's tossed in the completed pile. I use Null for anything that doesn't have a well-defined end goal like Wii Sports, Nintendo Land, and Maxis titles. Much simpler that way.

Same here. When the credits roll, that's the game for me. It gets ejected from the system.

I don't go after all the glittery extra details that don't contribute anything to the story beyond "search every alleyway for the hidden packages!"

ClockworkHouse wrote:
Eleima wrote:

I've a question though. What about games you tried out for a couple of hours (or less), but just couldn't get into and dropped after a while. Do those count as "null"?

I just delete them. If they're not going to be played, they're not part of my collection/backlog, even if I own them forever and ever, as with a digital purchase.

I did that last year, but with a few of the ones I deleted, I decided I did want to play them after all. This year, I'm nulling them, so that if I re-add them, they don't count as new games. Though I suppose I could just stealth add them :-/

Hum, thanks guys. Looks like I'm going to add SW:TOR, Binding of Isaac and Terraria to the "null" pile. Unless someone can wave a magic wand and make me get the hand of Isaac or Terraria?

Vrikk wrote:

Same here. When the credits roll, that's the game for me. It gets ejected from the system.
I don't go after all the glittery extra details that don't contribute anything to the story beyond "search every alleyway for the hidden packages!"

Hear, hear! I'm here to game and have fun, not run errands/do chores/work. :p

Decided to tackle Dead Space next. Here goes.

SallyNasty wrote:

That can't be Monkey's entire list, because if it is - I may have surpassed his pileness and become the premiere 360 hoarder on GWJ...

Will make it a point this week to update my post.

Active pile only. New idea o add some 'bran' to the motivational backlog.

All those others... All those lost souls (hours), have been committed to the Vault to be visited 'sometime' between now and the end of time.

No, I'm pretty sure AuS_BiRD (or however you spell it) still has the biggest pile o' shame here. Unless I've not been keeping up with backlog fluctuations as well as I should.

I'm also judging by my friends' list on Backloggery, which has been maxed for some time.

Added Rayman: Origins to my pile, as I got it last night as a Chanukka present / Christmas present-I-opened-early-because-it-looked-like-any-other-Amazon-package.

Vrikk wrote:

No, I'm pretty sure AuS_BiRD (or however you spell it) still has the biggest pile o' shame here. Unless I've not been keeping up with backlog fluctuations as well as I should.

I'm also judging by my friends' list on Backloggery, which has been maxed for some time.

IMAGE(http://i.imgur.com/3x54b.png)

1200... Yep, pretty sure he wins.

I assume that last year's informal rules for list updating are still in effect, i.e., don't update lists on previous pages since it messes with thread tracking, and don't post a fully updated list except at the end of the month?

ClockworkHouse wrote:

I assume that last year's informal rules for list updating are still in effect, i.e., don't update lists on previous pages since it messes with thread tracking, and don't post a fully updated list except at the end of the month?

I would assume so. After getting called on more than one update in a month this year, I switched over to just posting deltas each month. I'm a little surprised it didn't catch on actually, because it way easier to read than "Spot the difference in this giant list".

Also, I'm doing to cleanup of my list and re-organizing some things. I moved Majesty 2 and Tropico 3 into the "The Campaign isn't the point, so put 10 hours into it" list. As such, I removed the expansions for both those games from the Pile: they will just be additional content, if I continue playing past the 10 hours.

ClockworkHouse wrote:

I assume that last year's informal rules for list updating are still in effect, i.e., don't update lists on previous pages since it messes with thread tracking, and don't post a fully updated list except at the end of the month?

Ahhh, good to know! I was actually just going to update my original page 1 post. One update a month--got it

I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions for cutting down the pile. I'm trying to strategize for next year and have some ideas but want to crowd source them:

1. Start crossing things off my list alphabetically. Not only does this help me be more thorough in clearing the backlog, but I'm forced out of my comfort zone.

2. Go on a developer binge where I try to clear all the titles from a given developer. I'm considering knocking out all my Bethesda backlog.

3. Let new titles motivate me to finish past titles. This worked well for me in completing Guikd Wars 1 before GW 2 came out. This year I would try to beat Company of Heroes 1 before 2, Dragon Age 2 before Dragon Age 3, and GTA 4 before 5.

How about trying "bite-sizes"? You feel better when you make progress, I've discovered these past few weeks. I managed to finish The Walking Dead and Batman: Arkham City, which left me feeling pretty happy with myself.
So how about trying to cross off some of the smaller games? Because if you try to tackle Bethesda games exclusively, you're going to be bogged down, and while you might have fun, you won't be making any progress at all.

I am a fan of playing a few games at a time, typically one console game, one longer PC game and a short or casual game (those often turn out to be puzzle or indie games). This way you can regularly cross off at least one game and have a choice if you don't feel like spending any time with a certain game on a given day. I am always careful though, because I know that as soon as I have more than 4 games on the table at the same time, the chances to ever finish some of them goes down dramatically.

I also think it's no shame to put puzzle, strategy or casual games back in the pile if you had your fill, but want to return to it later.

Lastly, be realistic during sales and use HowLongToBeat.com to your advantage. Spending $5 on a 5-10h game is never a bad idea. Adding another 50h+ RPG to your pile when you already have 3 or 4 of them in there untouched may be a waste of money and unnessecary increase of your gaming anxiety/paralysis stress level.

jdzappa wrote:

I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions for cutting down the pile. I'm trying to strategize for next year and have some ideas but want to crowd source them:

1. Start crossing things off my list alphabetically. Not only does this help me be more thorough in clearing the backlog, but I'm forced out of my comfort zone.

2. Go on a developer binge where I try to clear all the titles from a given developer. I'm considering knocking out all my Bethesda backlog.

3. Let new titles motivate me to finish past titles. This worked well for me in completing Guikd Wars 1 before GW 2 came out. This year I would try to beat Company of Heroes 1 before 2, Dragon Age 2 before Dragon Age 3, and GTA 4 before 5.

I had a similar problem when I was trying to tackle my 'entire' backlog.

I tried alphabetical, but then realised I would never get out of A for at least 12 months. I then tried using the Backlog fortune cookie. That just helped identify what I didn't want to play (Eff you cookie, I'm not playing that sh*t). I even tried sticking to one format, and then picking a long title, and a short (as Luggage suggested). I even tried to beat a preceding pile game before the sequel came out, but that ended up making the playing a chore, and when the 'new' title I was working towards finally came out, I felt burnt out on the IP.

In the end. I sat down, away from my pile, away from my lists, and I just thought "what would be fun to play 'right now'?"

I'd right down that game (to avoid distraction), then I would go to my pile, find it, then play it. Nothing motivates you more than being in the right mood/frame of mind to play a title you're ready to enjoy...

I'm playing Forza 4 at the moment, and it's fixing my driving itch, but, I also have a hankering for some Dildo-Bat action, so Saint's Row the Third is getting mighty close to the top of the pile. I may even flip between the two, being as one will not crossover into the other in terms of controls, or dynamics.

I don't know if that helps or not, and my experiences may play out differently to your own. Remember though, we play for fun, so whatever you decide, enjoy it!

I agree with the playing a few games at a time as well, spread out over different genres. Similar to what Eleima was saying, if you spend all of your time in a specifc developer or series, you may actually get burned out before you get to a game you're actually interested in.

Luggage wrote:

Lastly, be realistic during sales and use HowLongToBeat.com to your advantage.

Yeah, HowLongToBeat is excellent in trying to plan out the backlog. It gives you a good idea of how viable your plan to get through games.

The best advice to give is just to make sure you're having fun while playing the games. Just because it's on the list/backlog doesn't mean you HAVE to finish it.

m0nk3yboy wrote:

In the end. I sat down, away from my pile, away from my lists, and I just thought "what would be fun to play 'right now'?"

That is actually a really good point, but you'll have to be able to put yourself in that mindset, which is not what everybody starts out with.

Before I joined the Band of Backloggers, I was feeling that I played to little (not that I ever actually did), I had to finish every game I started and that I didn't know which games I'd actually like and which ones only found their way into the pile as a "yeah, looks nice I guess" purchase. I learned a lot about my own enjoyment over the last year. Some games have to be poopsocked (ME3 and Bioshock 2 for me), some games will get abandoned even if AAA titles (D3) and some games will be just as great or even greater if you come back/get to them a year or two later (Fallout 3).

I agree with what's been said previously, it's kinda hard to stick to just one game, but as soon as you cross a certain threshold, you run the risk of getting lost in too many games. I'm currently tackling Dead Space and FTL (which I'm absolutely loving, thanks again M0nk3yboy!!!!) at the same time which breaks my "one game at a time" rule, but sometimes you want a change of pace, or you're hungry for something different, and that's okay. I also have Guild Wars 2 for when I just want to explore Tyria (my main is only level 29, I mostly just wander around areas trying to complete them).

The most important rule that supersedes all others is "have fun", at least for me. If I'm not having fun, then I'm wasting my time, and gaming time is mighty precious nowadays. Looks like my days of being a completionist are over, I just can't do it anymore.

CptDomano wrote:
Luggage wrote:

Lastly, be realistic during sales and use HowLongToBeat.com to your advantage.

Yeah, HowLongToBeat is excellent in trying to plan out the backlog. It gives you a good idea of how viable your plan to get through games.

Oh awesome, I was vaguely wondering if there was something like this, the other day, I was wondering how long it'd take me to finish playing Dead Space. Now I know! (or have a better idea)

In other news, I've had a momentary relapse, and pre-ordered Heart of the Swarm... *sigh*

I finished Super Mario 3D Land (3DS) this morning, so I won't be carrying that to 2013.

Alright, had to come check this thread to figure out who added me on backloggery. I see Eliema (your name is to hard to pronounce for me to remember, but seeing you here jogs the memory. I have no idea who Z_daddy is.

EDIT: Right now I'm not feeling the pile goals. Come January, that may change. I think getting my pixelated 8-bit derriere handed to me on a platter multiple times in Mega Man 9 has curbed my enthusiasm.

Thanks to a some generous lending and a generous gift, this is my console pile for the coming year:

  • [color=gray]Art Style: Rotozoa[/color] (WiiWare) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • [color=gray]Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean[/color] (GameCube) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • Donkey Kong Country Returns (Wii) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unfinished.gif)
  • Epic Mickey (Wii) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unfinished.gif)
  • Fortune Street (Wii) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unfinished.gif)
  • [color=gray]GoldenEye 007[/color] (Wii) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • [color=gray]The Last Story[/color] (Wii) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • [color=gray]Monster Hunter Tri[/color] (Wii) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • [color=gray]Muramasa: The Demon Blade[/color] (Wii) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • [color=gray]Tales of Symphonia[/color] (GameCube) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • [color=gray]Xenoblade Chronicles[/color] (Wii) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)

I might be able to knock out Epic Mickey before the end of the year, but that's still a lot of gaming. I'm going to make a shoptroll-style pledge: if you see me adding anything to my console pile in the next couple of months, feel free to publicly shame me.

I've decided to drop New Super Mario Bros Wii. It's a fun co-op game, but I haven't had much desire to play it solo. Plus, Clocky pointed out that the post credit content in Super Mario 3D Land is about as long as the main game, so I think I'll be getting my Mario fix from that for a while, and probably move on to NSMB2, or Sticker Star on 3DS after that.

I also broke up my pile a bit to add a new category:

My Pile File wrote:

Classic-shmassic
Older games that I picked up because they are "Classics". They have at most 5 hours to prove they deserve the title. If they haven't hooked me by then, they get IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/null.gif) Dropped.

  • Deus Ex GOTY (Steam) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • Longest Journey (Steam) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (Steam) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • Syberia (Steam) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • Thief II: The Metal Age (Steam) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)
  • Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines (Steam) IMAGE(http://backloggery.com/images/unplayed.gif)

Technically, this isn't much different than my approach to games in general. I've just broken them out like this to remind myself that they don't get more time to hook me, just because they happen to be "Classics".