Monthly Archives: February 2016

Gaming backlog worries

Regular readers will already be familiar with our “gaming piles o’ shame” over there on The Mantelpiece. Sir Gaulian’s backlog is mightily more impressive than mine, but both are nothing to be sniffed at. Put simply, we have far more games than we have time to play them.

This is a frustrating situation to be in. We have all those brilliant games sitting there, but there just simply isn’t the time to sit and play through them all, especially considering that some of the longer ones may well take 50 hours or more to finish. That’s great value for money, but terrible if you want to sample everything good that’s out there.

A sample of my current gaming backlog. I really must get around to playing through the Uncharted games one of these days...

A sample of my current gaming backlog. I really must get around to playing through the Uncharted games one of these days…

It’s also a source of anxiety. There are just so many great games that are worthy of my time and that I really want to play, but I can only play a fraction of them, and I fret about which game to move onto next because I know that some will perhaps never get their time in the sun. It’s a subject I’ve touched on before. Some might call this a ‘first world dilemma’, but I think that would be dismissing it a bit too easily… there’s always some deep-seated reason for genuine human emotion.

I decided to dig into the psychology of gaming backlogs. Not much has been written on the subject, but there was plenty on how people get backlogs in the first place – i.e. the psychology of selling – and there were a few interesting things about how people deal with the similar matter of never being able to read all of the worthwhile books that have been published. I put it all together and put it into this article for Kotaku UK:

Why We Feel So Bad About Gaming Backlogs

It all got pretty deep by the end.

But judging by the comments, it’s a subject that quite a few people have thought about and indeed worry about. So many games, so little time…


Filed under Features

Sir Gaulian says goodbye. For now at least.

11933458_10153537383462416_5024428238482388977_nA Most Agreeable Pastime turns five in June and I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve built here. I’m lucky to have an incredibly talented co-author on whoms coat tails I have so joyously ridden on for half of a decade. For every post I’ve written I’ve certainly become a better writer, due in no small part to the excellent benchmark Lucius has set in his writing. I’ve always found time to contribute to this incredible place we’ve built even when life continues to change at an incredibly rapid pace and with it my priorities.

It’s been a while coming but it’s time for me to take a step back. This isn’t goodbye but it’s certainly farewell.

Well, for the next year at least.

It probably won’t come as surprise to some of you that I’m writing this. In fact in March last year I wrote a post titled “Is This The End?“.  Reflecting on my honeymoon way back in September I wrote on how video games had begun to take a back seat. That has only intensified in recent months. I’ve found video games have become a device to write about other things – like my love for cricket or cars – sometimes even drawing a very long bow to write about Korean musicians.

Video games have indeed become a less important part of my life and I feel like my writing has really reflected that. In fact one of my favourite posts, a thinly veiled tribute to Richie Benaud, has almost nothing to do with video games. It also happens to be one of my favourite things I’ve written on here. That speaks volumes.

But it’s not just changing tastes.  My work has also increasingly encroached on my spare time, and as anyone in the research field knows, it’s all too easy to find yourself throwing your all into writing what seems like that career-defining paper.  Add on to that the fact that I’ve slowly but surely developed an interest in Korean economics and politics and I haven’t got much more ‘pontification’ capacity. I’m even planning on writing a book about it, something I wouldn’t have even contemplated 12 months ago.

Basically, life happens and things change. And if i’ve learnt anything it’s best to not resist change.

In short it’s been a long time coming.

This certainly feels like goodbye. Even if it’s not forever.


Filed under Editorial