Looking Back on 2013

2013 has come and gone and it was the biggest year of gaming for this little squid, I tell ya. Over 400 games collected and barely any finished in comparison, it’s pretty safe to save I’m a ravenous connoisseur of video games.

A year is a long time to look back on and memory is only so functional, so I’m endeavoring to do my best to look over this past year and share some highlights and fond memories of the year.

But first, the breakdown.

I purchased games for thirteen systems this year and completed 57 games across 12 systems.

Here’s the breakdown in old-fashioned ascii.

SYSTEM: NEW BEATEN
'------:----:----`
:    PC:264 : 24 :
:   NDS: 29 :  3 :
:   GBA: 22 :  1 :
:   PS3: 22 : 10 :
:   Wii: 18 :  4 :
:   PS2: 14 :  - :
:   PSP: 11 :  - :
:Sifteo: 11 :  - :
:   3DS: 10 :  1 :
:  WiiU:  6 :  1 :
:   PS4:  5 :  3 :
:   PS1:  4 :  - :
:   360:  3 :  5 :
:   GEN:  - :  3 :
:  SNES:  - :  1 :
:OnLive:  - :  1 :
'----------------`

PC clearly dominated the scene, which somewhat surprises, but I’m prone to Steam and GOG sales, so this doesn’t surprise me, especially with how things went last year regarding the subject. I’m still unsure if this is worse, better, or on par with what I aquired last year.

Memorable Gaming Moments of 2013

Little Inferno (Steam): Who would have thought burning random objects ordered from a catalogue simply for the soul purpose of burning them and keeping warm could be so fun. Add a disturbing plot and characters and you’ve pretty much made a squid happy. I played through this game four times over the course of the year which says something. I rarely touch something again after completion, least of all puzzle games.

999 (NDS): This interactive novel had a compelling plot and I found it rather difficult to put down, however, like most things, even though I achieved a very sad (and quite possibly the worst) ending, my desire to try for something better is quite lacking. Such is fate of one of massive backlog. However, it has proven to me that interactive fiction is still a genre I can enjoy.

Ni no Kuni (PS3): Proof that there still remain JRPGs I can enjoy without all the elements that typically drive me crazy of the genre. The simple mechanics, beautiful artwork, and gorgeous score had me glued to the screen. The story was masterfully told and left me in tears at many points. Once it was over, I felt a great void within like when most good things come to an end. I’m fairly certain I’ll never see anything else like this again which saddens me greatly.

Defiance (PS3): I’m not huge on MMOs of any kind, often finding myself tired of the repetition after so many hours of playing, but Defiance rubbed me a different way. It’s the first MMO I’ve finished the campaign for. My reasoning for getting it had more to do with lingering sadness of Tabula Rasa ending and less to do about the television program. However, thanks to this game I watched the program and found myself liking the mediocraty. I don’t play this game as often as I used to, but sometimes in the mornings I will fire it up for some reputation grinding.

Legend of Mana (PS3N): This game rekindled my love of JRPGS and set me back on the path to playing them. I enjoyed the beat ’em up styled combat and while it lacks a more cohesive story since the game is made up of individual stories, it’s still very good and I found myself getting a little emotional. I loved my little cactus plant and reading his journal entries gave me warm, prickly fuzzies.

Space Harrier (PS3 (Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection)): This proved to me that some legends never die and even the oldest games can still remain just as fun to play as current stuff. I have a lot of memories playing this game, especially losing quarters, and I was so happy this was the arcade port. I remember sitting down with a latte and firing this up. The next thing I knew, I watched the credits go by. It was a great afternoon.

Journey (PSN): Since beating this game, it continues to haunt me. I find myself pulled back to exploring those desert environments, meeting others on their pilgrimage, and enjoying the beautiful sights and sounds of the game. I had this game for far too long before giving it the time of day and I feel incredibly guilty for doing so.

Sleeping Dogs (360): I find open world sandbox games to get very tiring rather quickly and they almost never hold my interest for long. Sleeping Dogs broke that rut and I literally marathoned through the game over a period of two days. My hands did not like and I needed painkillers to get me through it, but I don’t regret any of it. It had a good story, fluid and gratifying combat, and overall the game seemed to be the perfect length even with all the side-stuff. I need a sequel. Sleeping Squids anyone?

Playstation 4, baby! Of course one the biggest moments would be my experience picking up my PS4, going home only to have my disco nap turn into a near squid coma leaving me to wait until the next day before tearing into my brand new toy and spending the day on updates, downloads, and serious case of gamer ADD fueled by sugar and caffeine. And it’s only the beginning.

It’s been an interesting year with several emotional ups and downs called life and the usual same old crap every year, but I made new friends, found ways to spread my enjoyment of games, and played hard. I’d like things to be a bit chill this year and focus on what I have rather than have my collection reproducing like tribbles, but we’ll just have to see how things go. It will be interesting to see my habits this year.

I hope all of you have had a great new years and I look forward to another great year with all of you.

Game on!

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