Today is the final day for Valve’s annual holiday Steam Sale and that means you have less than 24 hours to save money on some of the biggest games of 2016 as well as an ever expanding catalog of indie titles. It’s time to rifle through your wishlist, search the couch cushions for spare change and make any last minute purchases….. or should you? Here’s some insight into my own personal account.
First here is what Valve has selected to tease store pursuers with today:
Today’s Highlighted Deals
Grand Theft Auto V – $34.99
Counter Strike: Global Offensive – $11.29
H1Z1: King of the Hill – $14.29
Euro Truck Simulator 2 – $5.49
Doom Franchise Up To 60% off
Witcher Franchise 40% off
Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain $32.99
All Prices In CDN
Most of my Steam library is most definitely the result of multiple sales over the course of the last seven years. With over 300 titles it can sometimes feel like there is too much to play, I never thought I could be paralyzed by too much choice but as Alivin Toffers work on Overchoice shows us – sometimes when presented with too many choices an individual can become confused, anxious or dissatisfied as the number of choices increases. When staring at my library I often ask myself “Do I want to venture back into Fallout 4 or replay an old favorite like Unreal Tournament or perhaps a try out one of indie games I picked up cheap?”. It is great to have some of my favorite PC classics at my finger tips but it can also be paralyzing.
While writing this blog post I actually decided to dig into some of my account’s statistics – while I’ve had a Steam account since the day Half Life 2 launched in 2004, I didn’t start collecting games on the platform until 2009 when I built my first gaming rig. My most played titles are either open world RPGs like Fallout 3, Fallout 4 or MMORPGs like Rift Online and Eve Online. Clearly I enjoy being fully immersed an expansive never ending world but that means I’ve also neglected a lot of linear experiences in my library. Apparently I’ve only ever spent an hour or more in 30% of my games, meaning that approximately 245 interactive experiences haven’t even been installed by me in the last half decade.
So what is the solution? Is it to simply stop buying games, creating wishlists and playing titles that I’ve already dedicated my money too? Perhaps to an extent this is correct – I’m sure a lot of the smaller games that I’ve collected over the years like Analogue: A Hate Story could be completed in a single session while other idle time spenders like Cities: Skylines could see more playtime during particularly boring evenings. On the other hand it’s almost impossible to NOT get swept up in the excitement of the winter sale or to eagerly anticipate an upcomming title – I’m counting the days until Gravity Rush 2 and I haven’t even finished Final Fantasy XV yet.
So, I don’t have the solution to the glut of backlog games that I have accumulated over the years. I was gifted a $50 Steam Card over Christmas and of course I spent the entire thing before the holiday sale even ended. Others have come up with some creative solutions – like this one Engagdet writer who keeps a spreadsheet and organizes their unfinished RPGs in order of importance, which helped them finish the original 1998 Fallout. Others, such as one post in this thread on r/Patient Gamers suggested finishing 2 older games before investing the cash in a newer title. Sites like Backloggery can also help you track the progress on uncompleted games!
It is only the second day of 2017 and I am already swamped with games. Here’s hoping I can make that 70% unplayed rate in my Steam library statistics come down by the end of the year, instead of hording more games.