Backlogs and Other Projects

May 12, 2018 was an important day for me. Yes, after working on and off for 15 years, I finally received a Bachelor’s degree. But more than that, I came to realize I have a large number of things I’ve been putting off doing over the last 10 years, and especially the last 5, in favor of doing schoolwork or anything else I had going on. Now that I accomplished a goal, I have magically transformed (cue the Sailor Moon music!) into a goal-driven person.  Or at least that’s what I’m telling myself.

The one thing that I have been putting off for even longer than I had attended post-secondary education is my backlog of video games. Ironically, though it has been neglected, it just keeps getting bigger. Like a weed. Ever since I started trolling through the Playstation Network and seeing how many great free and discounted games are available through my PS+ membership, I’ve been a little…unrestrained. On top of that, it is much easier to accumulate things when you don’t physically have to store them in your closet and have more disposable income.

At first my backlog was just some sort of intangible blob in the back of my mind. One day I would surely get to all of my games, however many there were, some day. I mean, I paid for them, so I can’t waste money. But then I decided that in order to tackle this festering cancer, I needed to know what I was dealing with. Somehow, I ended up reading an article on the subject (maybe on Kotaku?) and going through the comment section. As an aside, I’ve always found Kotaku’s comment section to be the most informed and intelligent on the internet.

One thread was discussing how they keep track of their backlog, suggesting a few different sites and even just Google Sheets. I groaned at the thought of using a site to do all this work after I already entered all this information into an app on my phone 4 years ago. It is more for scanning physical games, which at that point was the bulk of my collection, and used to be a great way to keep track of them all along with pictures, selling prices, and review scores. It’s called Video Games Database Scanner, but I do not recommend it unless you are a collector. Even then, the app needs an overhaul as much of its original functionality has ceased.

The one suggestion made in that comment section was for a site called Backloggery. After exploring the site myself, I groaned again at how simple the interface was. While graphically, it looked like a site that was built on Internet 1.0, entering a number of games into my list wasn’t the easiest experience due to a few flaws in the system. Otherwise, after managing to create my backlog with every game I owned, both digital and physical, I found that I have around 500 games I need to play through.

That should be the end of the story, but along the way I realized something about myself: I’m no longer a collector. At least, I don’t want to be. I live in DC and storage space comes at a premium here. I don’t like storing or displaying things unless they have a purpose and as I’ve matured (haha), I’ve learned that game cases are very ugly. I’ve also moved many times and have had to carry them all to each new home. So if I don’t want to display them and I don’t want to store them, why do I still have them? Thus began another project I’ve been putting off: selling things on eBay.

I’m now simultaneously going through my (still growing) backlog and selling physical games that have better digital versions. As I grow into my new life of having free time, I’ve decided I need to clear all the clutter out of home and life. By having less “stuff” I will be able to focus on the few things left that really matter. I’ve also found that as I complete more projects, such as whittling down my Facebook friends to only the 200+ people I actually know or care about, I feel a sense of accomplishment. Sometimes it’s the little things we do that help give us a boost of confidence.

So how bout you? What projects can you complete within a few days to help you feel more accomplished?

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