I played a lot of video games during my two-week vacation over the winter holidays this year, but I feel like I barely scratched the surface of all the games I got and want to play. This feeling isn’t entirely based in reality, since half the games I currently want to play are games that I don’t own. I put a bit of an embargo on buying things in the latter half of the year, specifically on games I would be alright waiting to play but definitely wanted to play eventually so I’d be able to give people ideas for what to give me as a gift. Now that the holidays are over and I’m not expecting any more gifts, I’m looking to buy everything I wanted and didn’t get. It’s not a huge amount of games, to be sure, but it’s enough that I’m probably going to be busy for months, especially with all the other games coming out this year.
Right now, after a bit of a delay due to a broken PS4 controller and a bit of frustration resulting from a glitch making me lose an hour of play (not to mention the arrival of several other games that I wanted to play more), I’m finally back to playing Dragon’s Dogma. After all the feelings I’ve had about not being able to fully customize my player character in recent games I’ve played, it’s nice to be back in a world where I might be constrainted to two gender options but that does not restrict my character’s appearance beyond the sort of constraits required to make the model actually fit in the game. I’m enjoying the character I made when I started the game last summer and while I’m struggling to move around the world (it’s so big and there’s so much jogging and running I need to do to navigate it), I’m still enjoying most of. The only bit I’m not enjoying is just how many angry wolves and giant bats I’ve got to fight as I try to get from Point A to Point B. At least the bandits don’t always respawn.
Unfortunately, before I can finish this, I’ve got a replay of Fire Emblem: Three Houses to finish up before Fire Emblem: Engage releases (well, released, since this post was written 3 days before FE:E came out but will go up 4 days after). I want to have some of that good save data all played out on my Switch. I also don’t want to be tempted to return to FE:TH to finish up my interrupted play-through since leaving things incomplete makes my brain itch. After FE:E and between longer play sessions of Dragon’s Dogma, I’ll be playing through Tunic (which I’ve seen segments of thanks to twitch streams last summer but never actually played) and then Chained Echoes which I just heard about yesterday and sounds like absolutely my kind of shit. By the time I’m through all of that and probably a replay of FE:E with different choices or highly used characters, there’ll be a release of Kirby’s Return to Dreamland Deluxe to play through, along with the copy of Donkey Kong: Jungle Freeze that I’ve been meaning to play for a couple years (though I sort of inherited a Wii U version from a friend who never bothered to pick it back up and want to grab a Switch version of the game).
After that, I want to do a franchise replay of the most recent two God of War games (new game plus, to focus on story elements. If the NG+ feature is out for Ragnarok by then, anyway) and then probably a replay of Ghost of Tsushima just because that’s such a beautiful, enjoyable game. After that, a more focused play-through of Horizon: Forbidden West to try to actually get through that entire game in one burst so that I’m not forgetting what’s actually going on by doing one act every three months. Somewhere in there, the new Legend of Zelda game will come out and then that’ll be it for me for at least a month. At least. It’ll take longer than Breath of the Wild did since I’ll have a wedding to attend right after it comes out, so I’ll be a bit busy for a while there.
From there, my gaming gets a bit murkier, since I try not to pay too much attention to the release schedules of games. Originally this summer was going to be a deep dive into Baldur’s Gate 3, but after all the Wizards of the Coast BS from last week, I’m not certain I’m going to play it anymore. I’ve just lost my hunger for it. It feels more emotionally compromised than I’d like in a game I’m playing. Which means my summer is a pretty open book. Maybe I’ll be doing more Wildermyth, playing through Dwarf Fortress, enjoying Pentiment, or just continuing to grind away at what Valheim has to offer in the late-game side of things. I’ve got so many video games to enjoy that I’m starting to wonder if I’m going to have enough time to get through them all this year. After all, I’ve got more hobbies than just video games (even if one sort of imploded itself recently), so I don’t frequently dedicate huge amounts of time to just playing video games. Plus, I’ve got a bunch of puzzles and a new lego set to assemble, podcasts to listen to, and blogs, novels, and Tabletop Roleplaying Game campaigns to write (and run, in the last example).
It feels pretty good to know that I’ll be able to keep myself busy, no matter what. I just hope I enjoy myself as much as I think I will with all these games. It wouldn’t be the first time I’ve looked forward to a game only to be extremely let down (I’m looking at you, Fallout76 and Anthem) by what actually gets released. The law of averages is on my side, though, since there’s at least half a dozen other games on my deliberately hidden from easy access list of games to watch out for that I hide behind my desk aside from game release events. Like Diablo IV. And the new Star Wars Jedi game (which is currently slated to come out in March and will just absolutely wreck the schedule I just made for myself here). Plenty to be excited about and, I hope, plenty of chances for my expectations to be met or exceeded.