How to Deal With a Backlog?
Backlogs are symbols of good and bad in the gaming world. They bring out the best and worst in gamers. There are plenty of games to play but never enough time. The Gamer’s Lounge has some ideas on how some gamers should deal with backlogs.
One of the most important steps is to organize. Gamers should be asking themselves: "What do I want to play next?" "How much time should I spend on certain games?" "Is it time to purge the collection?" Why do some gamers hang onto every Sonic game for Genesis that they know they will never play again? What about those 2-4 player co-op games: will some gamers play 4 player Fuse with their buddies across the country before the servers are shut down? Probably not. These are important questions to ask yourself if you have a large backlog.
One rule which could help is to set a price point. Gamers "buy it now" price could be $20 or less but this might cause some of us to increase our backlogs. A price point might help some gamers limit their purchase of games.
Another idea is to stop buying games until the backlog is purged or gamers have played what they already own. For most of us this will never work, thanks to Steam and sites like Cheapassgamer the deals are endless.
What about a timeframe? If someone buys a game and they don't play it for 6 months, make a plan to get rid of it. I try to stick to this rule and it works most of the time. If I really want to play it, someday I will rebuy it for under $15. Gamers could take all those games to Gamestop or Amazon and get some trade in credit. Or go the eBay and/or craigslist route and sell some games for cash.
Gamers could also take the games they own in their backlog and use sites like 99Gamers or Leaptrade and trade them for other games. Again, this might not be the best solution for some gamers. Some gamers might want to ask themselves if buying games because they are cheap is the best idea. Why not look into services such as GameFly for modern gamers? For the retro gamers, Retroscribe would fit this niche. Rent a few titles a month for a fee. This will keep the clutter down and let gamers play a lot more.
Speaking of retro games, I don't think backlogs were an issue 20 years ago. Most gamers probably didn’t have this issue when they were younger. Lack of funds, a limited gaming library, and the inability to find games for super cheap are some of the reasons some of us never had backlogs until recently. Now as grownups, we have less time and more money, but it is time to make a change. Don’t let the backlog control you. Decide what you want to do and how to handle it.