Breaking My Backlog


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:

2064: Read Only Memories
7 Grand Steps, Step 1: What Ancients Begat
A Story About My Uncle
A Virus Named TOM
AI War: Fleet Command
Alan Wake
Amnesia: The Dark Descent
Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs
Battle Chef Brigade
Beat Hazard
Beneath a Steel Sky
BioShock 2
BioShock Infinite
Brütal Legend
Caesar 3
Caesar 4
Canyon Capers
Chroma Squad
Counter-Strike: Source
Dangerous High School Girls in Trouble!
DARK SOULS: Prepare To Die Edition
Day of the Tentacle Remastered
Deponia Doomsday
Deus Ex: Human Revolution – Director’s Cut
Double Fine Adventure
Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen
Duke Nukem 3D Atomic Edition
Dusty Revenge
Electric Highways
Fallout Classic
Fallout 2 Classic
Fallout Tactics Classic
Gabriel Knight 2: The Beast Within
Gabriel Knight 3: Blood of the Sacred, Blood of the Damned
Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers
Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions Evolved
Girls Like Robots
Gods Will Be Watching
Grim Fandango Remastered
Guacamelee! Gold Edition
Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition
Gun Monkeys
Guns of Icarus Online
Half-Life 2
Half-Life 2: Lost Coast
Half-Life: Blue Shift
Half-Life: Opposing Force
Hand of Fate
Hot Tin Roof: The Cat That Wore A Fedora
Human Resource Machine
Invisible, Inc.
Jones On Fire
JumpJet Rex
King’s Quest Collection
Labyronia RPG
Labyronia RPG 2
Left 4 Dead 2
Legend of Mysteria
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
Octodad: Dadliest Catch
Paper Sorcerer
Phantasmagoria 2
Pillars of Eternity
Police Quest Collection
Potatoman Seeks the Troof
Q.U.B.E. 2
Quest for Glory Collection
Retro Game Crunch
Robot Roller-Derby Disco Dodgeball
Rocketbirds: Hardboiled Chicken
Saturday Morning RPG
Secrets of Rætikon
Sins Of The Demon RPG
Song of the Deep
Space Quest Collection
Spirits of Xanadu
Stardew Valley
Storm of Spears
Super Galaxy Squadron EX Turbo
Super Hexagon
Super Meat Boy
Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP
Syberia 2
System Shock
System Shock 2
Team Indie
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 Vanishing of Ethan Carter
The Witcher: Enhanced Edition
The Witcher 2: Assassins Of Kings: Enhanced Edition
The Witness
Thimbleweed Park
Thirty Flights of Loving
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
Tyrian 2000
Uurnong Uurnlimited
Velocity 2X
Waking Mars
World of Goo

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

Bloodstained: COTM
Frederic 2
The Fall 2
The Way

Dragon Quest VII
Metroid: Samus Returns
Xenoblade Chronicles

Mass Effect 3
Final Fantasy XIII
Ni No Kuni

Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

Total Backlog: 195