The Video Game Nostalgia Wave: The Comfort Of Returning To Older Gaming Devices

Each console or handheld generation gets updated every few years. The tech is newer and shinier, and the capabilities are greater than what came before. For instance, the Nintendo Switch has become groundbreaking in what it means to game on the go or stationed on a dock to play at home. Whatever your needs are, the Switch has become the gaming device to adjust accordingly. As we move further and further away from what has become outdated and no longer “in”, sometimes, I do appreciate going back to what once was the darling of the gaming world.

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Tying Up Loose Ends: Wrapping Up Previously Started Video Games

Getting a brand new video game feels a little like Christmas morning. You’re excited and can’t wait to get started. The very idea of it being new is enough to entice you to take a peek at the game, even if you’re already in the middle of playing something else.

I have been guilty in the past for starting games and getting pretty far with some of them, only to stop just as I’m so close to the end. Now, I’m trying to go back and finish some of the games that have been outstanding for a while.

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Coping With Uncertainty Through Hobbies

Having so many interests can be both a blessing and a curse. When the pandemic first started and everyone was asked to minimize social interactions and only go out to buy your essential needs, it wasn’t a difficult adjustment for me to make. Being more introverted than extroverted, it was easy to stay inside and keep busy with what I had at my disposable. TV, books, video games, and writing had kept me occupied for the last two years and made weathering the uncertainty of a new virus we knew nothing about easier to manage. With plenty to do at home, the hard part was figuring out how to make equal time for each hobby.

Between the constant reminders of our ecosystem on the verge of collapse and the horrifying conflict currently happening between Ukraine and Russia, all these unknowns can be crushing and devastating if you don’t have something to distract you. No matter how temporary it is.

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Video Game Review: Neo – The World Ends With You

Sequels to beloved video games can either be everything you hoped for and more, or it can barely hold a candle to the original game. Neo: The World Ends With You is the long anticipated followup to 2007’s The World Ends With You, which originally came out on the Nintendo DS. While there is plenty to love about the game, with an upgraded battle system, wider areas of Shibuya to explore, and a soundtrack that continues to stay on point, there’s also some weak spots that made playing the game frustrating at times.

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The End? The Fake Ending In Video Games

Reaching the end of a video game can be exciting. After spending many hours with a story and characters, going on a journey and getting to know the characters until they start feeling like good friends, the end can feel bittersweet but hard earned to finally see how it all ends. As the anticipation builds toward the end, something happens in the game that pulls the rug from right under you. Maybe the end credits roll but you’re left flabbergasted, thinking, “That can’t be how it ends?!” or a chapter labeled as “Final” actually opens up a few more subchapters that eventually get you to the real ending of the game.

This has been my recent experience with two video games in particular—Control and Neo: The World Ends With You. Fair warning, there are some light spoilers for both of these games.

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Testing The Waters: Figuring Out The Next Video Game To Play

Ever since the start of the new year I have been finishing up a few games I’ve been playing since last year, like the DLC for Control and Neo: The World Ends With You. I recently completed the two DLCs for Control but I’m still working through getting to the end of Neo. One of the things I have been thinking about, as I get closer to finishing the story of Neo, is what video game should I play next?

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Video Games In Review: What I’ve Completed In 2021

Whenever I choose a video game to play for the next few months the hope is I’ll stick with it and not stop halfway in the middle of the game. That has happened with a few games I played in the past where I start off excited to devote most of my time with a game only to abandon it for another game, or not being in the mood to play for a little while. This is why when I do commit to a game and see it all the way through, it’s a massive achievement for me personally to consider it finished and crossed off my backlog.

Here is a list of all the video games I played and beaten in 2021.

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Can’t Put It Down: The Irresistible Lure Of Replaying A Video Game

Being a gamer for a while has made me realize that video games will often be separated into a few categories: games we enjoyed but are okay with playing once, games we didn’t enjoy and will never play again, and games we loved so much you want to replay it again to relive the story and characters all over again. There are maybe a handful of games I played that fall into the latter category. Games where I was mesmerized by everything from start to finish and was actually sad when it was over.

I could tick off every game I would gladly replay, and always intended to do, but most of the time I don’t get to revisit. Year after year new games come out to inevitably entice you to move forward with those and never backward with the ones you’ve already played. But somewhere along the way one game comes along where the urge to replay finally takes hold and you answer the call without hesitation.

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Video Game Soundtracks I Can’t Get Enough Of

Music creates an emotional response within us that can evoke strong memories if it leaves a lasting impression on us. Whenever I hear the video game soundtrack of a game I thoroughly enjoyed or it has moved me beyond measure, I can easily recall favorite moments from the video game or it stirs up certain emotions I have felt towards the characters and story.

Much of 2021 has been a pretty good year for video games, especially as far as having a bit of a completed list of games under my belt, which has led to the discovery of soundtracks I can’t stop rotating between on Spotify. Here are my favorite video game soundtracks of the year.

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Video Game Review: Life Is Strange – True Colors

Ever since French studio Dontnod Entertainment released Life is Strange in 2015, the decision-based, story driven adventure game about a teenager who has the power to rewind time, it went on to become one of the best interactive video games of the year. By combining the supernatural with the highs and lows of being a teenager, Dontnod created a compelling episodic narrative full of characters with nuance, unexpected twists, and a hella good soundtrack of indie artists to set the mood and tone of the entire game.

Developer Deck Nine continues the legacy Dontnod Entertainment started with the new game Life is Strange: True Colors.

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