Friday 11 December 2015

2015 New Years Resolutions Revisited! Success or Failure?

Generally, people have trouble keeping New Years Resolutions, myself very much included. However I had never tried doing Gaming New Years Resolutions, so last year I wrote a post containing five New Years Resolutions for my gaming life. It's not totally the end of 2015, but it's close enough to know results and to start thinking of a game plan for next year's. Here's a progress report on the progress and failures of last year's gaming resolutions.

1. Platinum Final Fantasy X HD

Result: Not Platinumed

Looking at my gaming habits of last year, this was a pretty ambitious one. With a very full backlog and no guarantee of a working TV after moving my life to a new place, I didn't really have a method for this one. By the time everything was set up, I really just wanted to play games I hadn't experienced before.

However, after a very delayed start, I am playing Final Fantasy X HD again on my Vita and I'm loving it. I bought it in an attempt to consume more Japanese media and to get the platinum and it's been a great solution for when I need a change of pace from any game I'm playing. I've set aside a little time each weekend to work on platinuming games and replaying old favourites, so I'm confident I will platinum it sooner rather than later. I will be sure to report back when I do!

2. Play a native Japanese RPG from start to finish.

Result: Very close to finishing this one. Likely to achieve this before the year ends!

I was super excited and confident in this goal, despite my Japanese level at the time. Once I arrived in Japan, I realised a lot about Japanese - mostly that I didn't know as much as I thought. So along with being overwhelmed with the language being all around me, when I began trying to play Ciel no Surge, the amount of words I didn't know was overwhelming enough for it to only last a month in my Vita.

Instead of totally giving up, I switched my 'game' plan and started playing less story orientated Japanese games, like Hatsune Miku Project Diva and Persona 4 Dancing All Night. Not only was this fun, I got a lot more comfortable with not understanding things, which I think is essential for playing Japanese games when you're starting out.

For my Platinum goal, I needed to play a FFX HD again which was fine. But playing in Japanese would mean I could grind both resolutions and hear the infamous 'hahaha' scene in Japanese. The experience has been really enjoyable thus far (I'm almost at the Calm Lands FYI) and if you're okay with not understanding everything, I definitely recommend trying games in another language. It's a very cool way to experience games again or ones not available in your region and with some patience, you can find ways to get around things you don't understand.

3. Chip away at my backlog

Result: Nailed it!

This is one of the best things I've ever done for my gaming life. It's funny how gaming libraries pile up - we buy games because they seem cool and then get distracted by another 'cooler' game and then have a pile of unplayed cool games. I definitely still have plenty of games in my backlog and probably added many more. But I also have a new found love of the Danganronpa series, an appreciation of Final Fantasy IX and closure for Conception II that I wouldn't trade the time back for.

I recommend doing this to every gamer. Your new favourite series may be waiting for you!

4. Play more PS4 Games

Result: Yes and No.

This was kind of difficult, especially when this goal directly contradicted with getting through my backlog. While PS4 games like Sword Art Online: Lost Song and Tales of Zestiria definitely tickle my fancy, the Australian PSN store prices always kept me away, because I would be like 'I could pay $100 for a new game...or I could play through the great games I already own'. Persona 5 was meant to be my ticket to PS4 heaven, but that got delayed until next year so there weren't many JRPGs to keep me to it. Not only that, but the TV that came with my new place had no HDMI, so I had to save some money to buy a monitor to even play my PS4 at all. Things were looking pretty grim for my PS4 life....until I renewed my PS Plus subscription.

The PS4 Instant Game Collection is kind of a goldmine, especially if you've had it since the PS4 was released. I was pleasantly surprised when I continued my subscription after missing a month or so to see all of my previous games from PS Plus still waiting for me. This allowed me to continue playing games like Resogun that I loved at release. My boyfriend and I also love having random Rocket League matches nowadays and I'm looking forward to diving into Fallout 4 more. Things are definitely looking up in PS4 land right now, so I hope to play more next year (however I probably won't make a resolution about it this time).

Hindsight note: If games you like are on an older console, it's totally okay. I don't feel bad for unplugging my PS4 to play Persona 3 on PS3 anymore, which is the opposite to the resolution but that's okay. I love my PS4. I love my PS3. Other consoles are cool too. I'll play whatever has the coolest games at the time because both are great.

5. Buy a 3DS XL

Result: Technically a failure, but I'm getting it as a gift for Christmas.

I've had many opportunities to buy a 3DS this year. There are many new and pre-owned ones around for decent prices, but I never felt the need to buy it because I have so many games in my PlayStation backlog. But, when my boyfriend asked if I still wanted it for Christmas this year, it was an easy yes. Although it's a terrible decision for my backlog, I really want to play some modern Pokemon, Yo-Kai Watch, Persona Q and Phoenix Wright. My love for PlayStation is pretty real, but I'm also excited to branch out into the world of Nintendo.

Looking back on my gaming life this year, I really put a priority on balancing playing new games and getting through my backlog. I didn't play a large amount of games right on release this year but I still had plenty of fun exploring series that were new to me, like Danganronpa (which has become a big new favourite in my collection). I'm excited to try make a gaming plan for the new year again, perhaps with less contradicting goals this time. It was a lot of fun and I think even though I failed a few of these, the small changes made to my gaming life have all been for the better.

Did you make any gaming related New Years Resolutions this year or last year? How did you go?
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