Previous months: Nov 2009, Oct 2009, Sept 2009
I'm not embedding the spreadsheet this month because with the birth of a new year, I am planning a new approach to these posts. The "What I'm Playing/What I'm Paying" Google Spreadsheet is still there for the previous months.
With 2010, I am pledging to move this blog towards PC gaming as a whole instead of just MMOGs. I've dedicated a lot of time over the past ten years to MMOGs, but I have played a lot other games as well. I have ignored talking about many of those games and I want to correct that.
Changes for my What I'm Playing/What I'm Paying posts
First, I am putting myself on a stricter gaming budget. Subscription MMOG diehards will argue until they are blue in the face at how "cheap" it is to pay $15 a month for dozens of hours of entertainment. $15 x 12 months = $180 is my budget for gaming in 2010, starting as of Christmas 2009. My goal is to have a varied PC gaming experience, including MMOGs, FPS, RTS, and web games. This is NOT meant as a way to prove anyone wrong! It is a way to show that $180 can buy a wide variety of gaming on the PC if a gamer is willing to be conservative and play some games they have missed over the years.
Secondly, I have loaded up on games via the Steam Holiday Sale. I have purchased everything from BioShock to Mirror's Edge to S.T.A.L.K.E.R:Shadow of Chernobyl. Most of these games are on sale from $2 - $5. At approximately $35 total spent, I feel like I have an entire year's worth of games saved up (and there are three days left for the sale!).
Anyone can buy a bunch of cheap games, but it takes some dedication to actually play them. A two dollar game is a waste of money if it never gets played. To alleviate this problem, I am going to have a game(s) of the month as part of each post. For example: January 2010 will feature Mirror's Edge.
After each month, I will give a mini-review of the game(s) of the month as well as discuss the others games I may have played.
I will also calculate the amount of time I spent playing each game every month and figure it into a total money vs. total time spent playing equation to determine the value I am getting from each game. To help track this, I have a decision to make:
Raptr vs. Xfire
Raptr is a newer tool meant to combine multiple IM platforms as well as track how long each game is played.
Xfire is the old standby gameplay tracker.
Having used both together for a month now, I am leaning towards Raptr. It tracks more data, has better reporting, and a better website. Xfire will be going bye-bye (again).
These are general ideas, not laws that cannot be broken. The budget isn't set in stone and I am more than willing to break it for a good game (WoW:Cataclysm being a possible budget breaker this year). It is quite possible this splurge in spending on older games via Steam will be a wash and I will never play some of the games. Also, its possible a change from MMOG blogging to general PC gaming blogging will kill my readership.
Regardless, 2010 looks interesting!