The lights are on
I’ve wanted to replay the original Metal Gear Solid for the last five years. I used to play through it every fall. I’m a nostalgic guy, and autumn reminds of when I first played the fantastic stealth game one Halloween almost fifteen years ago. Finding free time to revisit Shadow Moses Island has been tricky since I first struck out on the path toward video games journalism. The tidal wave of great games has swelled over the years, and now I’m up to my neck in big-budget, 30+ hour epics. I love most of the new releases I play, but I don’t have time for everything old and new. This conundrum has me thinking: Is it better to leave some blind spots in your backlog or return to the well of known favorites?
Unless you dedicate untold hours to playing games, some titles are bound to slip by no matter how popular or interesting they are. I missed out on Deus Ex: Human Revolution, Dragon’s Dogma, and Final Fantasy XIII-2 following their release. I want to fill these gaps, but now Darksiders II, Transformers: Fall of Cybertron, and New Super Mario Bros. 2 are on the way. Not to mention that I capitalized on this year’s single, fleeting game drought to catch up on my biggest embarrassment: playing Final Fantasy VI. No matter how much fun I have hunting after the evil Kefka and collecting Magicite, I’m constantly plagued by the gnawing guilt that’s telling me I should be playing something new.
Before I landed my job at Game Informer and earned access to our vast vault of games, I subscribed to mail order game rental services and purchased games in order to stay knowledgeable (drooling over Mega Man X screenshots as a Sega kid). I learned about the newest games through multiple video-game magazine subscriptions, before my family had regular Internet access. My limited knowledge of upcoming titles, small personal library, and occasional trips to the game rental store meant I’d be playing my favorites into the dirt. I don’t regret this a bit. Replaying and becoming knowledgeable about series like Sonic, Mega Man, and Resident Evil are what helped me distinguish myself as an editor at Game Informer. But now that I’ve got my dream job, I rarely find the appropriate occasion to frolic down memory lane with Wind Waker or Alex Kidd in Miracle World. I feel like I’m losing my identity as a gamer by gluttonously consuming all the best new stuff.
On paper, having too many good games to play is a wonderful problem, but playing them all is impossible. When’s the last time you cleared your gaming schedule to reacquaint yourself with one of the titles that got you into it in the first place? Staying up to date with your favorite series and exploring new IPs is important and exhilarating, but dragging out the old systems and game collections should not become a lost art. We shouldn’t leave it up to game publishers to decide when we replay the classics with HD collections and digital rereleases. Those retro favorites are like old friends. You may have new priorities and interests, but these ghosts from the past formed who you are and deserve a morsel of your time. It’s time to catch up.
Email the author Tim Turi, or follow on Twitter, and Game Informer.
I used to mainly stick to current gen games and new releases, but I've recently found myself going back and playing old favorites, like Max Payne and MGS 2 and 3 (through the HD rerelease) and classics that I hadn't played before, like MGS 1 and Castelvania SOTN.
Grand Theft Auto IV is probably my favorite game of this generation and it's really the only game that I find myself coming back to again and again.
I buy new games only when they are extremely appealing to me (Darksiders 2 will be the 3rd new game I bought this year). That being said I also buy LOTS of used games as I see them because I like to have a number of other games to also play when I need a break from whatever I'm currently deeply into.
I have the same problem Tim. I have so many games that I havn't played or barely played; GOW3, Singularity, Heavenly Sword, Batman AA, Assassin's Creed, ICO/SotC, LBP, ME2, Infamous 1/2, it's depressing. Yet I still fall back on Black Ops or MW2 almost every night. /sigh
they are indeed like old friends, last fall when i brought out my n64 for the first time in years, it felt like i was reliving my childhood. ive decided that im going to try to play ocarina of time at least once a year.
I love replaying my old favorites. Recently I bought the Sega Golden Axe pack on XBL & have been having a blast playing through those games. I'm a gamer who juggles multiple games @ once all the time so I do give myself time to play the old favorites while I'm enjoying the new ones I just got. Now I have some major health issues & have lived in hospitals more then my actual home so I do have more time then others to play those games but on a rare chance I'm feeling well I spend it doing something else or playing a new game.
The way I play games is I have a few new ones, an old favorite then another from my backlog. I like keeping it different between em all. I also hooked up my PS2 again & have revisited the first Killzone & Shadow of the Colossus. I guess I have no problem revisiting older games. I also am one to not freak out if I don't have the game the first week it comes out. I'm a slow gamer if you can call it that, I don't rush through em or try not to. It may take me a year or so to finish some but I play them through their entirely. I play on my time, when it works for me. I like Tim have missed out on the new Dues Ex, Dragon's Dogma, not to mention Skyrim but when I feel like it & can afford it I'll go pick those up as well.
Am I the only one who will sometimes erase their old saves & start from square one on some of their games just for the hell of it & bring back some of that challenge again?
I've been on a huge retro game kick lately. I recently bought several lots of snes and nes games off of eBay. I'm just burned out on big sprawling games right now. I loved Fallout 3, Red Dead Redemption, Skyward Sword, BioShock, and all the other big name titles I played this generation, but when I go to start a new game now, it just seems so overwhelming. I don't want to learn a whole new world. Sometimes it's just nice to be playing a game and know exactly what to do, and exactly where you're going. To be in your gaming comfort zone.
I uesd to play the entire Metal Gear Series once a year for the last 5 years. This is the first year I have not done it so far. I may take a vacation and just have a marathon session.
i have the same issue, a gaint backlog and no real time to play them with all the current , specially after just recently getting a job and having even less time cause of that. i would like to go back and play what i loved or what i've missed but there really is a point that you just can't do it .. its why i'll probly never play a snes game sad as it is having never owned one back when
I usually play two to three games yearly, only games that I really care about. I don't play every single game that comes out cause that's pointless and you'll become bored of games very quickly.
I don't keep games for too long. Just takes up too much (for my liking) space.
I play the hell out of them as soon as I get them but once I feel I've found every morsel of goodness, I trade them in for 32 cents.
I beat the first games I owned Ms. Pac Man, The Lion King, and Sonic 1 ( all for Genesis) out of principle at least once a year.
One of the major problems for me is I want to re-visit games like Assassins Creed or Mass Effect1 but I KNOW I can't stop without playing through the whole series again. There's just too many new excellent games that I want to experience (though I always make time to re-visit Hyrule).
The situation is brutal now. There's so much good stuff that I don't know how people keep up, and it takes up a lot of money too. You'd have to rent to keep up, but even that doesn't make up for platforms and time constraints.
Basically what I spend most of my time doing now is getting newish games that have been out some months or a year. I don't buy brand new games anymore. I spend the rest of the time playing old games such as Wind Waker. So basically I guess I'm still in that childhood place.
So question..are you playing MGS or are you playing at collection of MGS games or ignoring it completely?