Breaking my Back(log)

I’ve been working nights lately… and preparing for a move to Texas… and I’ve managed to knock more games, movies, and TV off my “backlog” in the last month, at a faster pace, then I have been knocking games off in years. This includes: Getting the platinum trophy for Horizon: Zero Dawn, hit 25% trophy completion in Mass Effect: Andromeda, finished some random trophy hunts I’ve been meaning to in a plethora of games, watched eight movies I've been interested in seeing, and even finished watching Preacher, and Silicon Valley (two shows I had let slip for quite a while).

The “secret” to my success? I only have one system plugged in and only keep one or two discs out.

It sounds stupid (and it kinda is isn’t it) but this practice (coupled with the lack of my gaming PC equaling no League of Legends) has helped me to focus on specific games.

I noticed something sorta similar to this happening when I first bought my PS4. I was living with my father, but spending most of my time at my girlfriend (now wife)’s house. I had the majority of my systems hooked up at my father’s, but the PS4 was at the GF’s. This “forced” me to play the PS4, which allowed me to move quickly through my newly acquired games. Once the GF and I decided to get an apartment together, and I had all my systems in one room again, the backlog grew at a rapid pace.

In that month I have played maybe 10 games of League (when my PC was up and running) and honestly feel like I have been playing better than I have in months. I think the reduction in games/spreading out of my gaming has actually allowed me to focus more on the games that I do find the time to play.

Sometimes, it seems the best way to get better at a game, might be to take a break and re approach it with a fresh perspective. I never imagined unplugging my computer might make me better at league; however, I feel that too much gameplay might burn a player out.

This burnout can happen in two ways. The first happens when you go on a losing streak. Often, if I've lost two or three games in a row, I find myself playing another two or three absentmindedly, which usually results in another couple losses and a reduction in my ranking.

The second form of burnout is literally just what it sounds like, you play a game too much that your brain burns. You might feel like you've hit a wall, or no matter how you play, the other player just has that little edge over you. Balancing a good life to game ratio is important, but I think equally important is allowing yourself some variety in your gaming.

So, if you find yourself, like me (and I assume many of the other writers here at EGF) looking at the daunting backlog you’ve acquired, perhaps focusing (or unplugging all but) one console, and taking a step back from your favorite time sink, may help you to begin whittling your list down.