Gaming is a costly hobby. A few hundred dollars for a console or PC upgrade, sixty for the latest and greatest game, the inevitable DLC costs, and the memberships required to play online. For me, it seems the worst habit I can think of is stopping, or moving on, before my playthrough is completed. This particular problem is an unnecessarily frequent issue of mine. I spend all this money to play the game, and then get sidetracked with another game, my professional life, relationships, or even the game’s online multiplayer feature. (I’ll play hundreds of hours worth of Call of Duty multiplayer and never finish the campaign.)
This summer, I noticed a friend of mine playing some older games that he had already finished. In the summer slouch of game releases, he had gotten bored and found him self wanting to do another playthrough for achievements and to complete the DLC that had been released since he initially beat it. I realized I hadn’t even gotten around to beating the original campaign of the game even though I bought it. The game in question was, Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor; a game that had been in the discussion for every game of the year award in 2014. I remembered loving the rival system, the brutality of the combat system, and the immersive world of Tolkien’s Middle-earth. This game is, without question, worth finishing at least once. How did I never finish it in the almost 3 years since release? How dare I call myself a gamer? This is something I needed to fix.
I dove back into Mordor this summer and found myself slicing, stabbing, and shooting an untold number of bloodthirsty orcs while I moved through an epic story. Now, I can proudly say that I beat Shadow of Mordor and all it’s DLC content this summer. I had a blast! Now, I’m even more hyped for it’s sequel coming this fall, Middle-earth: Shadow of War. My mission continues this summer with The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim. Yet another game garnering just about every award it was eligible for. My problem with this game was a little different. There are so many ways to play it, so many skills to get, so many side-quests to do, that I got burnt out on the game because of all the different characters I was trying out before ever beating the main story line. This is the same problem I had with the Fallout series, another Bethesda masterpiece.
This season my goal is to finish each game I buy before I move on to a different one. I can already see Destiny 2 and Call of Duty: WWII breaking that streak for me with the return of classic Call of Duty style gameplay and rage inducing kill streaks that are as rewarding as they are frustrating.