Friday, May 9, 2014

I’m really not this organized.

I’ve had several people ask me how I keep track of my games and how I’m doing in them.  It’s not hard and it’s not a secret.  I use an Excel Workbook.

When my brother, dain bramage, and I started playing together we didn’t have very many games.  We would give each other games as gifts if we hadn’t bought that game for ourselves previously.  After a while it got hard to remember who had what game.   We both sat down and created an inventory of every game we owned.  It was just a simple Excel spreadsheet.  One for each system.  We also added a column for “dain owns” on mine and “Pengwenn owns” on his.

Once we did this it was very easy for him to pick the games for our little challenge that started this blog oh so many years ago.  It was also easy to figure out what games to get the other person.  And when I got robbed it was a godsend for filling out those claim forms.  Plus it is an easy way to check off the games I had replaced as I was recovering from the theft.

Here's a snapshot of the first couple games on my Xbox 360 tab.  You can see I haven't play these games very much.  (I did changed my brother's name because I don't call him "dain bramage" in real life but that's what you know him here in my blog world.)

If you have a lot of games (I also have a similar list for my movies) I would highly recommend creating an inventory for said games (or movies).  There’s so many useful things you can do with this information.  You can search for games that are almost complete in their achievements so you can focus on those and finish them off.  If you marked which ones you’ve finished you know what ones you can blog about . . . of help your friends with or recommend something.  It’s also helpful to seeing trends in your game buying.

I went through a “buying only RPG” phase.  Don’t remember what set that off but I have a bunch of games I know I got at around the same time and they’re all RPGs.  Most of them I haven’t even played other than to put it in the machine to make sure the disk will load.  I also went through a “FPS” phase after I got my Xbox 360.  That phase I can point to Gears of War and Call of Duty 4 specifically.

Another way I’ve organized my list is by games with strategy guides.  If I have a guide I’m likely to play the game knowing that if I get stuck I’ve got something handy to help me get unstuck.  But even though I buy the guide for most games I really don’t like to use them unless I’m desperate.  I much prefer to figure things out on my own even if it will give me headache while I’m trying to do so.

I’ve also been able to organize my list by games with no gamer score.   I don’t like seeing games without a gamer score.  There’s just something about that “0” that screams “YOU NEVER PLAY ME” and while that might be true I feel terrible about neglecting one of my games.  There are just so many hours in the day so it’s unavoidable to not getting around to certain games.  But that doesn’t mean I’m not at least thinking about them.  Now that I can isolate which ones they are I can work on playing them and getting some achievements.  It worked for Too Human.  I now have 150 points in that game. 

Until recently I had the games listed alphabetically, but by release dates for collective franchises.  That means that while Assassin’s Creed would list 1-4 first before Brotherhood and Revolution my list was showing them in order of the release date.  That way I could play them in order as they were meant to be played without messing up the timelines.  Unfortunately the last sort I did messed that up and I haven’t gone back and corrected that mash-up.

And speaking of release dates, I have a separate list with the release dates of all the games.  Why?  Because I feel bad for not getting around to playing Batman: Arkahm City, but I feel even worse for not playing Kamino.  Why?  B:AC was released in October 2011 but Kamino was released November 2005.  It was a launch title and I haven’t gotten very far in the game.  That game (among others) have been sitting around longer so I’ve had more time to play them, but haven’t.  But whatever you do don’t get me started on my original Playstation games that I haven’t played.  The number of those un-played games will just spiral me down into depression if I think about that too long.  Again, not enough time in the day.

Despite this fancy, organized spreadsheet I’m not running a well oiled machine here.  I still can’t decide which games to play.  I still play games I’ve finished but can’t get enough of.  I still can’t get to all my older games.  And I still give up to easily when things go south.  

 I’ve been really trying to evaluate any new purchases on a scale of what I’m really dying to play (there’s a spot on my list for those games as well).  Unfortunately I occasionally give in to the hype and buy a game that I had originally planned on passing on.  I won’t mention any name Call of Duty: Ghosts.  I might look organized but I just say “meh” and play whatever I’m in the mood for at that time.

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