Breaking My Backlog

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Like most gamers my age that have eventually grown up and got jobs that maybe give them some disposable income, I have a problem. I have a huge backlog. Due to things like Steam Sales and Humble Bundles, I’ve quietly amassed a list of games that I haven’t even downloaded yet. So many, I can’t even keep all of them straight. This creates a problem as I tend to forget what I have, and when it comes time to pick a new game to play I either don’t bother to check my games list and just decide I have nothing to play, or I do check my games list and get overwhelmed with choice. Either way, the result is the same. I just decide to just play Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past for the 50th time.

Something has to change, or dare I say: Something has to break.

Breaking My Backlog is a semi-regular feature here in which I document the process of playing through my entire backlog. Here on this page, I have include a list of my entire backlog of games I haven’t finished, and as I beat each one I will cross it off of the list and write a brief review of the game itself. In this way, you guys can come along with me on this journey, and maybe learn a little something about me — and yourself — in the process.

Now, like any great quest, stakes are important, so I’ve created a very simple one. I made a pledge: I will not buy another game until I’ve played through my backlog. So, Resident Evil 2: REmake? Unless I’m done with my backlog by January 19th, I will not buy it. What about the new Pokémon game that all the kids are going to play? Well, this kid just might not be able to play it. What about the new Madden game? Well, since I haven’t played a Madden game since 1996, I think it’s safe to say I won’t be playing the new one regardless of the status of my backlog.

I will say this, though: I am allowing myself two caveats to this pledge. First, if the game is free. I do follow a lot of promotional programs like Indie Bundles that sometimes give games away. If this is the case — and it’s not costing me any money — I’ll go ahead and pick it up. The second caveat is gifts: Christmas, birthday, Steam gifts, etc. If someone purchases the game for me, I will accept it also. Again, as long as I’m not spending any of my personal money on it. In both of these cases, I will update the games list to include it, as it will then become part my backlog.

I understand that this may seem like an insurmountable task. Even my wife told me — after I made the pledge — that she didn’t think I could do it. And while she may have just been using reverse psychology to make me more determined, I can’t help but feel more determined in the face of all of this adversity. After all, in addition to stakes, all great adventures also require an antagonist, and in this great journey, my antagonist is… myself. Or my backlog. Or my wife? Is it my wife?

I think I’ve lost the metaphor somewhere.

Screw it. Adventure. Breaking my backlog. Et cetera, et cetera. Join me, won’t you?

Games List:

PC
2064: Read Only Memories
7 Grand Steps, Step 1: What Ancients Begat
A Story About My Uncle
A Virus Named TOM
ABZÛ
Adventure Pals
AI War: Fleet Command
Alan Wake
Alan Wake’s American Nightmare
Amnesia: The Dark Descent
Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs
Anachronox
Arcanum
Ballistick
Battle Chef Brigade
Beat Hazard
Beneath a Steel Sky
Betrayer
BioShock 2
BioShock Infinite
Brütal Legend
Caesar 3
Caesar 4
Canyon Capers
Cat Girl Without Salad: Amuse-Bouche
Chroma Squad
Crescent Bay
Dangerous High School Girls in Trouble!
DARK SOULS: Prepare To Die Edition
Darksiders
Day of the Tentacle Remastered
Deponia Doomsday
Deus Ex: Human Revolution – Director’s Cut
Double Fine Adventure
Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen
Drawkanoid
Duke Nukem 3D Atomic Edition
Dusty Revenge
Electric Highways
Ellipsis
Evoland
Fallout Classic
Fallout 2 Classic
Fallout Tactics Classic
Firewatch
Fortune-499
Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers
Gabriel Knight 2: The Beast Within
Gabriel Knight 3: Blood of the Sacred, Blood of the Damned
Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions Evolved
Girls Like Robots
Gods Will Be Watching
GoNNER
GRAV
Grim Fandango Remastered
Guacamelee! Gold Edition
Guild of Dungeoneering
Gun Monkeys
Gunpoint
Guns of Icarus Online
Half-Life
Half-Life: Blue Shift
Half-Life: Opposing Force
Half-Life 2
Half-Life 2: Lost Coast
Hand of Fate
Hot Tin Roof: The Cat That Wore A Fedora
Hue
Human Resource Machine
Hyperdrive Massacre
Invisible, Inc.
Jones On Fire
JumpJet Rex
King’s Quest Collection
Labyronia RPG
Labyronia RPG 2
Left 4 Dead 2
Legend of Mysteria
LISA
Luna’s Wandering Stars
Lure of the Temptress
Manual Samuel
Master Reboot
Metal Slug 3
Metro 2033
Mini Metro
Monster Loves You!
Mount & Blade
Mushroom 11
Next Up Hero
Ninja Pizza Girl
No Time To Explain Remastered
Noir Syndrome
Nuclear Throne
Observer
Octodad: Dadliest Catch
Orwell
Outlast
Overgrowth
Oxenfree
Paper Sorcerer
Perception
Phantasmagoria
Phantasmagoria 2
Pillars of Eternity
Police Quest Collection
Potatoman Seeks the Troof
Psychonauts
Pumped BMX+
Q.U.B.E.
Q.U.B.E. 2
Quest for Glory Collection
Receiver
Retro Game Crunch
Ricochet
Rituals
Robot Roller-Derby Disco Dodgeball
Rocketbirds: Hardboiled Chicken
ROCKETSROCKETSROCKETS
Sanctum
Sanitarium
Saturday Morning RPG
Secrets of Rætikon
Shadow Warriors 2
Shiftlings
Shutshimi
Sins Of The Demon RPG
SOMA
Song of the Deep
Space Quest Collection
Spirits
Spirits of Xanadu
Sproggiwood
Stardew Valley
Storm of Spears
Streamline
Strife
Subnautica
Summoner
Super Galaxy Squadron EX Turbo
Super Hexagon
Super Meat Boy
Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP
Syberia
Syberia 2
System Shock
System Shock 2
Tacoma
Team Indie
Teenagent
The Blackwell Legacy
The Bridge
The Chosen RPG
The Desolate Hope
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
The Journey Down: Chapter One
The Last Blade
The Mighty Quest For Epic Loot
The Order of the Thorne – The King’s Challenge
The Red Strings Club
The Swapper
The Tiny Bang Story
The Vanishing of Ethan Carter
The Witcher: Enhanced Edition
The Witcher 2: Assassins Of Kings: Enhanced Edition
The Witness
Thimbleweed Park
Thirty Flights of Loving
Thor.N
TIMEframe
TimeShift
Tiny Echo
Tomb Raider I
Tomb Raider: Anniversary
Tomb Raider II
Tomb Raider III: Adventures of Lara Croft
Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation
Tomb Raider: Chronicles
Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness
Tomb Raider: Legend
Tomb Raider: Underworld
Tower of Guns
Twinkle Star Sprites
Tyranny
Tyrian 2000
Uurnong Uurnlimited
Velocity 2X
VVVVVV
Waking Mars
World of Goo

PS4
Adventures of Captain Spirit
Final Fantasy XV
Horizon: Zero Dawn
Life is Strange
The Last Guardian
The Last of Us
Tomb Raider

Switch
Bloodstained: COTM
Fe
Frederic
Frederic 2
Mulaka
The Fall 2
The Way

3DS
Dragon Quest VII
Metroid: Samus Returns
Xenoblade Chronicles

PS3
Mass Effect 3
Final Fantasy XIII
Ni No Kuni

Wii
Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

Total Backlog: 209