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I stopped buying games in 2021.....
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rojimboo 28 Nov, 2021
I used to have a guilt complex where I wanted some developers to succeed and keep making great games, so I bought their games at full price if I could. Even when I sometimes barely played the game, or at all.

I have a big backlog like most of us here, and by no means do I have a massive collection compared to many. Yet I will never ever finish my ~500+ games in my lifetime. This realisation led me to buy way fewer games in the past two years, saving me quite a bit of money. Why buy games I will likely never play? What do I actually owe these creative content creators? It's not up to me to have them succeed and produce more quality games.

Weird, huh? I think so.

I do still contribute to PC gaming and can happily refer to myself as a PC gamer, known for prolific use of credit cards during store sales. I'm not sure how much of a gamer you can be if you stopped buying for years...but who decides what a 'gamer' is anyways? Not me. So do what makes you happy! Spend your money on other activities you value and want to contribute to. Then again if you like a game, even if its AAA, then I believe you should support them too.
scaine 28 Nov, 2021
Nope, I'm still buying and playing, so can't contribute too much to this thread. Sounds like you might benefit from a Humble Choice deal though - the cost of two pints of lager a month to access 8-12 usually pretty interesting games. I'll happily spend more than that on a single good book (or indeed, two pints of lager), so it's a nice to way to keep the games catalogue building for very little expense.

The only thing I really disagree with is your assertion that 2021 hasn't been a good gaming year. In my opinion, it's been pretty spectacular. Native games like Valheim, Griftlands, Legend of Keepers, Loop Hero and most recently, the absolutely superb Roguebook have kept me very happy this year with hours upon hours of gaming.

Throw the net into Proton-land and I've been blown away by The Phantom Abyss, Everspace 2, Mass Effect Legendary Ed, all the while playing old favourites like Noita, or games that recently removed Denuvo, like Nier:Automata, Death Stranding, or Star Wars: Fallen Order.

2021 has been pretty special, I think.
denyasis 29 Nov, 2021
Thanks all for the comments!! Glad to see I'm not the only one!!

I'll admit, I did feel weird consciously deciding to stop buying games. I mean you go online here and other places and it's all NEW RELEASE, NEW RELEASE, SALE!!, and the comments are usually "OMG my wallet!", "grow the collection!", and "best game ever!" (I am making fun of us all a bit here, have a laugh 😂).

I think it's ok fade in/out of one's hobbies. I know there was a stretch of several years where I really didn't game much at all due to life (although I still bought games, hoping I'd find time later).

Quoting: dubigrasuI've come to the realization that I'll maybe never have the time to play all of them. So I've made myself a "must play" list and I'm slowly going through it.

Pretty much exactly sums up my situation. I started trying to "complete" more games in 2020. I'm very bad at that, usually getting "bored/distracted" or giving up when it gets hard. I think I've completed 11 in the last 2 years. Probably more than I've ever finished in my life before.

On top of that, I've "discovered" games that have been in the collection
gathering dust, but turned out I really enjoyed. The STALKER series, Witcher 1-2 (made me read the books), XCOM 1, etc etc. Instead of browsing for a game to buy, I play!


Quoting: eldakingA bit of a hot take here, but I'd recommend to everyone: give up on AAA.

I guess I'm singling you out here, but you wrote it very nicely. Sorry. But what are we calling AAA? Like large commercial budget? If so, I might have to disagree. I can think of quite a few good games from the past that are pretty good (Witcher 3 as an example). Or are we talking more about mass-market games? In that case, I can agree.

Quoting: scaineNope, I'm still buying and playing, so can't contribute too much to this thread.

Totally cool. I hope you are enjoying the new games too!

Quoting: scaineThe only thing I really disagree with is your assertion that 2021 hasn't been a good gaming year

I can respect your opinion here, after all, our enjoyment from gaming is subjective. Of the games you mentioned, I remember a few of them from this site. Perhaps I should say something like, 2021 did not have a lot of games that interested me personally? Without trying to sound super down on anyone's gaming choices, for me, if I saw something interesting, I likely already owned something similar.


While I'm not buying, I still enjoy reading about Linux gaming here including all the new releases and news. So I must admit I appreciate all of you that are still buying and trying new games and talking about them.
eldaking 29 Nov, 2021
Quoting: rojimbooI used to have a guilt complex where I wanted some developers to succeed and keep making great games, so I bought their games at full price if I could. Even when I sometimes barely played the game, or at all.

I have a big backlog like most of us here, and by no means do I have a massive collection compared to many. Yet I will never ever finish my ~500+ games in my lifetime. This realisation led me to buy way fewer games in the past two years, saving me quite a bit of money. Why buy games I will likely never play? What do I actually owe these creative content creators? It's not up to me to have them succeed and produce more quality games.

Weird, huh? I think so.

This really hit home. I feel strongly about this ideology of consumerism as "support" - keep spending money as a display of love for things! - or even a moral obligation or personal responsibility. Yeah, it is a bit suspicious that y'all that sell things want to convince us of how important and good it is to buy things.

If I wanted to be charitable or do something nice for a cool person I could find more effective ways of doing it than by accumulating random shit I don't care for. Heck, those days we even have things like Patreon that specialize in that.
eldaking 29 Nov, 2021
Quoting: denyasis
Quoting: eldakingA bit of a hot take here, but I'd recommend to everyone: give up on AAA.

I guess I'm singling you out here, but you wrote it very nicely. Sorry. But what are we calling AAA? Like large commercial budget? If so, I might have to disagree. I can think of quite a few good games from the past that are pretty good (Witcher 3 as an example). Or are we talking more about mass-market games? In that case, I can agree.

It's not clear-cut, there is a grey area and all, but I'd say it's the games by the really huge publishers, with the huge budgets. Very small studios or single devs are definitely indie, but even some really big studios are still on a completely different league compared to a studio owned by something like Microsoft, Sega, EA, Sony, Take Two, etc.

I'd say Witcher 3 is AAA, maybe not as high budget as Cyberpunk 2077 but still clearly in the AAA realm. And it's certainly an outlier, a game that stands out for how well liked it was, winner of multiple awards and breaking records of copies sold. And it still had a bunch of problems: it was notoriously buggy at first, it was delayed, had accusations of heavy crunch. It was full of the usual spurious (if harmless) bling - a bunch of cosmetics, pre-order exclusive "protective sleeve", decorative statues for the ultra-expensive versions, etc. It was a quite heavy game on release, and on the high end of game prices. And, while it was masterfully executed, it was not particularly inventive or unusual - action RPG and open world, in AAA, who ever heard of that? None of that makes the game bad, but what I mean to say is that this is the shining jewel of AAA and it still has some of the same bullshit? Now imagine the average quality of AAAs, those with the always-online DRM, with the micro-transactions, the bad reviews...

Look, I know some things are only achievable by AAA. Indies can't get this much content in an open-world game, can't get instant match-making at any time in the day, can't get the same ridiculous high fidelity, and etc... but looking below the shiny film on the top, it's not worth it.

Edit: I'm not sure if I was clear in what I'm saying. I'm not saying that no AAA game is ever worth your time/money, I'm saying that as a whole AAAs are not worth the trouble they cause. My conclusion is not that no one should ever play any AAAs, but that everyone needs to look more critically - look past the marketing - and stop making excuses for the fundamental problems of AAA games. Look into other directions, think about which limitations are actually acceptable, this kind of stuff. Though I'm ranting way too much, maybe if someone wants to keep discussing the issue we should make a new thread.

Last edited by eldaking on 29 November 2021 at 5:42 am UTC
PublicNuisance 29 Nov, 2021
I have mostly stopped buying games and foccused on working on my backlog. I have it at almost under 500 now. I have also taken the money I have saved and started donating to more FOSS projects, many f which are games. Been fun actually.
mirv 29 Nov, 2021
I buy very few games now for the reason that yes, my backlog is rather large, and also I have very limited time to play any of them these days. What few games I do play are often for relaxation, chilling out, and not anything designed to require high concentration and fast reflexes.
For all those reasons, I'm naturally attracted to smaller indie titles where such games are in abundance. Subcube, Hivetime, Encodya, that sort of thing.
For AAAaaaaaaaaaaaa games I find there's also very little inventiveness in the games - they're all basically the same, just with a different splash of paint on top, and are incredibly boring, overpriced, junk. I much rather donate to developers on Patreon where even if a game comes out that I don't like, at least they mostly try to do something different (and won't crash as much either).
dvd 29 Nov, 2021
Well to flame a bit i liked Wasteland 2, Wasteland 3 not so much. The only thing i remember is when the rangers kill the psycho guy i actually thought he slipped on a pound of blood. I actually found out he was killed when my guy got reprimanded for it. I basically thought going full AAA didn't add anything to the game, probably subtracted from it. I mainly enjoy these days only turn based rpgs or toactical games. A lot of times their systems are a lot more enjoying and when you play on something other than rookie your guys actually have a chance to die too. Of course this also means i have little time for anything else since one game like this basically sucks up the time i'm willing to game for a few weeks at least.
denyasis 30 Nov, 2021
Quoting: eldakingI'm saying that as a whole AAAs are not worth the trouble they cause

Quoting: eldakingThis really hit home. I feel strongly about this ideology of consumerism as "support"

I can get that. I think part of the turn off is that, especially big budget games, promise NEVER SEEN BEFORE ONE OF A KIND LIFE CHANGING EXPERIENCE and the hype doesn't match the reality on any level. My favorite game was Morrowind... I've never played the sequels because, well, I'm not expecting them to be much better. It's improvement in small steps, at best, and when this year's release seems the same as last year's.... Well I think it's easy to dismiss them, especially in light of thier ridiculous hype.


Quoting: dvdWell to flame a bit i liked Wasteland 2, Wasteland 3 not so much

Well crap. WL2 was one of the ones I tried this year, but I couldn't do it. It was so.... Boring? Perhaps the aurora/infinity engine styled RPg's aren't for me. I really like the concept, but I've only ever managed to complete Planescape: Torment (fantastic writing) and Fallout.
eldaking 30 Nov, 2021
Yeah, looking at good studios that started sucking after being bought by AAA publishers is... sobering. Of course, only the good and successful studios are bought out, it's not like AAA are looking for people that need help to selflessly help them.

BioWare is particularly infamous. Got bought by EA in 2007, same year as they released Mass Effect (the first one, but they had already started work on the second). Dragon Age Origins was released in 2009, but work started in 2002. They finished what they were already doing... and then it was all downhill.

There are plenty of other, lower-profile, stories. At first it's all great, their games have more stuff than ever. Then they start making more action RPGs and shooters, focusing more on multiplayer, putting out more DLC, graphics become more "AAA generic", people from the studio are moved to help with other projects, deadlines get shorter, there are news of controversy in the workplace, and then you realize their old games were so much better, why could that be.
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