What games are you ashamed to admit that you have never played?
Casually browsing social media, I saw an interesting question posed by one member of a retro gaming group: “what game(s) are you embarrassed to say that you haven’t played?” Having not long ago wrote about my never-ending backlog, this was a question I could relate to, as could many adult gamers today. For brevity’s sake, when it comes to series, I’m going to focus on those that I have not played a single installment.
First things first, there are many games/series which have received extensive praise that I’ve only dabbled with or played at a friend’s house. Ones that come to mind are the Mass Effect series, the Metal Gear games (though I am not big on stealth), and Shadow of the Colossus. I plan to revisit these games but they aren’t the focus of this article.
Rather, the games to be included on this “big secret” list are those that I have little to no experience with. I won’t make excuses… OK maybe I will… but there was a lot of school and hard work mixed in during my 32 years of life that made gaming difficult, especially medical school. I also have this dilemma where I focus on one game over all others (think World of Warcraft), taking me away from other potentially great games.
Now that I’ve gotten my excuses out of the way, where do I start in coming clean? The first game/series that comes to mind for me is Bioshock. Perhaps 2K Games’ best title, Bioshock was released in August 2007, a time when I was still fairly knee-deep in World of Warcraft. I remember hearing about how innovative it was but I can’t for the life of me figure out why I decided to pass. I know I had intended to play it, but maybe WoW was just too much to put down in the mid 2000s.
Then, of course, there is the Portal series, also released in 2007. I recall watching cousins or other randoms playing this, but I have very little memory of playing it myself, if I have ever at all. With its unique “worm-hole” mechanic, its something I regret missing, if nothing more than being able to contribute to conversations about it that inevitably come up from time to time at gamer-heavy events.
Taking a look at other time periods, not all of my missed mega games came in the mid 2000s. While I was an even more active gamer in the 90’s than I was during the first decade of the new millenium, there were still some titles that I missed. A major one that I think about is Banjo Kazooie, released in 1998 on my favorite console of all time, the Nintendo 64. I was 11 years old at the time, old enough to recall the critical acclaim that the game received. I never got around to it- or more importantly I never asked my parents for it- simply because it was overshadowed by other titles at the time and my resources were limited as a child. There were many times that I considered a playthrough, but it became a must when its spritiual successor Yooka-Laylee was released in 2017.
To finish this up, being a huge role-playing game fan since forever, I have to reluctantly reveal the list of games in this genre that I have not played. These are the types of games that would trigger some enthusiasts to fall off their chair if they heard I haven’t played them. There are many, many RPGs out there that I wish I had tried, but the few that I’m most embarrassed to admit I never touched include the Earthbound/Mother games, Chrono Trigger, the Persona series, and Baldur’s Gate.
Those are shocking ones for a RPG fan to have not played, I admit that. I think I am most weary of having not played Baldur’s Gate. A PC dungeon crawler RPG fanatic, I’ve sinked thousands of hours into the likes of the Diablo games, and, more recently, Path of Exile. To make matters worse, the game was made by doctors! Other actual medical doctors that forayed into the gaming landscape like myself, for shame!
At a certain point a gamer has to let certain titles go unless they want to fall even more behind. If your backlog is as massive as mine, this pertains to you. Choose which ones you think are worthwhile to play first and go from there. Maybe figure out which games you find yourself embarrassed to admit you haven’t played and proceed accordingly!