It's a good time to be a gamer. We're spoiled by a plethora of options on just about every console/device and virtual reality seems to be just around the corner. But is it too much?

That's the question I find myself grappling with.

I grew up in the '90s with an SNES, followed by an N64 and a Gameboy Color. Cartridges weren't exactly cheap and my interaction with video games was limited by my parents. On top of this, I spent most of my childhood years growing up abroad, where access to new games was tough. Though this might sound like a gamer's dystopia, it taught me to be disciplined and cherish what I have. The thought of owning multiple consoles was completely foreign to me and I would only start playing a new game if I had finished the previous one. This early experience made me into a completionist.

As mentioned earlier, the gaming landscape has changed entirely since the '90s. You can find something to play on any electronic device, ranging from a free mobile game to a $60 AAA RPG. As if there weren't enough choices, Valve's Steam sales act like a siren's song for your wallet. I've amassed a backlog of over 50 titles since building my PC a year and a half ago; some I've only played for an hour, while the majority remain untouched. It's gotten to the point where I've had to force myself to hold off on any new purchases (oh, how you tempt me with your 50% off, Wasteland 2). Throw in PS+ and you've got more games than time on your hands.

I find it incredible how Steam and other sales have influenced my behavior, not just financially. Over the past year, I've become better at suppressing the voice in my head that goes off when I switch to a different game without finishing my current one. I've learned to accept that sometimes it's not really worth finishing a game for completion's sake (I'm looking at you, Bravely Default!). This isn't to say that the pendulum has swung the other way and I've become fickle about completion. I do finish the games that I thoroughly enjoy, like Shin Megami Tensei IV or the Persona series, but it is a bit frustrating knowing that there are some games you just won't be able to play or devote the proper attention to due to time constraints. But I guess that's just part of the process of growing older.

Advertisement

So how does everybody else deal with this? Are your purchasing habits dictated by time or a budget? How do you tackle your backlog?