If I could only play 5 games in a year

Naithin, of Time to Loot, suggested this writing prompt over the Blaugust Discord:

For one whole year you are only allowed to play five games (including DLCs).

Apparently it is something that started on Twitter and is now making the rounds through the blogosphere. Naithin decided to add a few rules though because he felt that just being allowed to play 5 games for an entire year wasn’t punishment enough!

These are Naithin’s rules:

  1. The consequence for playing a 6th title?
    Playing anything outside of your pre-selected five titles will result in any gaming device you touch spontaneously combusting. (Ooooh, Spooky! Halloween ya’ll!)
  2. Selections aren’t limited to a single platform
    So if you wish to select some Switch titles, some PC, some PS4 etc — this is OK.
  3. All DLC for a given game is fine and included within your pick
    As the original tweet, all DLC for a game included. I will further specify, that this could be unreleased DLC at the time of making your selection.
  4. Mods (even Total Conversions) are also OK
    But they can’t rely on the assets of a game you haven’t selected to work. (e.g., The Skyrim TCs for Morrowind and Oblivion require the original assets.)
  5. For a series of games, each entry is an individual selection.
    If you want Dark Souls I, II and III — that’s three of your five picks.

If are curious about Naithin’s picks for this challenge you can check it out here.

My five games

Any kind of list like this is tough. Even more so when you consider these are the only games you will be allowed to play for a whole year. Specially for someone who has some vastly mood swings like me which makes me completely abandon one game to play another out of the blue!

Final Fantasy XIV

This one is pretty much a no-brainer. The game receives constant updates with new story content, optional dungeons, etc., has regular events, has a bunch of optional content and we can unlock all classes in one character. If that wasn’t enough I also have two other characters, one which I am also trying to get all classes to the level cap and the third one which I am just trying to unlock one class for each role.

If by some miracle that I was able to complete all of that in less than a year, in the last update Final Fantasy XIV added a New Game+ mode which I could use to replay my favorite story parts.

Just this game alone could keep me pretty busy and entertained for a whole year. If it wasn’t for the question of variety and that I what I feel like playing can change just as fast and randomly as a lightning strike I wouldn’t even have to pick other games for this challenge.

Skyrim: Special Edition

This is one of my “comfort foods” of gaming. Whenever I feel like playing something that doesn’t require much brain power and where I can just putter around in a fantasy setting this is the game I go to.

Plus there is always some new interesting mod to download and test. And if I ever get crazy enough I can try to make my own mods to get things exactly how I want them to be.

Runner Up #1: Fallout 4 which is a similar “comfort food” and I can try to build settlements to scratch my creative itches.

Runner Up #2: Fallout: New Vegas. Same reason as both of those but with an actual good main story.

Runner Up #3: The Outer Worlds. I haven’t played this game yet but from everything I hear it is like Fallout: New Vegas but without the bugs and I don’t know how moddable it is/will be.

Civilization VI

Some times I need a good strategy  game to play. The Civilization series has always been good at scratching that itch and that is no different with Civilization VI!

I haven’t gotten the latest DLC yet with the natural disasters (I keep forgetting about it) and there is a ton of civilizations that I haven’t tried and achievements I haven’t gotten. So just that could keep me entertained for a while.

Runner Up #1: Crusader Kings II. It is a completely different beast in terms of strategy but the insane types of stories and decisions we can make from this game makes it worth it. Granted, I am terrible at it and haven’t been able to even form an empire yet. Maybe playing it for one year I could get better at it! Ok, I probably wouldn’t but one can dream!

Runner Up #2: Stellaris. Something between the mechanical gameplay of Civilization and the insanity of Crusader Kings II this is another game I found pretty fun to play. I have yet to finish my first playthrough of it but I already thought of some different alien civilizations/scenarios I’d like to play!

The Sims 3

Yet another of my “comfort foods”. I love to come up with silly concepts for my Sims families and see how it works out. I also like to try building houses for them, even though I am completely terrible at it and it always ends up looking more like an alien tried to mimic human construction.

I also like to take the occasional challenge made by the community. My favorite of those being “The Random Legacy Challenge.”

Runner Up: Stardew Valley. This I’d play just for chilling and have a good time. Really, there isn’t much I need to say about this game. 🙂

Yakuza 0

I ask myself the same thing all the time, Kiryu

Some times I get in the mood for something with more action and the Yakuza series is always good for that. Although all the Yakuza games are good in their own rights, I decided to go for Yakuza 0 for a few reasons: first, I haven’t finished the game myself yet, only watched a friend streaming it. Second, of all the games I feel it is the one that has the best “complete” package, i.e., the story is good, so is the gameplay and the mini-games. Lastly, it has Majima as a co-protagonist, with his own storyline, and Majima is the only other character in the series so far that is as awesome as Kiryu.

I will admit though that I am not completely sure about this pick. I mean, I love the game but it is a single-player game and doesn’t have as much replayability as the other games in this list. So it might be harder to make it last for a whole year.

On the other hand considering how I constantly get distracted by other things and end up stopping and restarting games like it was out of fashion then it might actually work out.

Runner Up: Spider-Man. The only reason I haven’t picked this game for my list is because I barely played it. Also I am very picky about the portrayal of my favorite characters and given that Spider-Man is my favorite super-hero I’d really would like to see the game’s whole story before passing a verdict. Having said that, what I played of it was pretty fun and it did seem to have a pretty good potential for just puttering around the city, stopping some random criminals and just having a fun time. 🙂


There are so many other games I considered putting on this list. In fact I am pretty sure that if I were to do this list again there would be a few differences.

I am also pretty sure I wouldn’t be able to stick with just these five games for long as I’d miss not only other games in the same genres as these but also others that I didn’t cover here like jRPGs, Visual Novels, adventure games and so on.

Soon enough I’d be hit by this challenge’s curse and see myself forced to find another hobby to fill in the void cause by it. (Damn you and your curses, Naithin! XD)

I am just glad this kind of challenge is just a fun mental exercise. 🙂

8 thoughts on “If I could only play 5 games in a year”

  1. Nice list! Civ VI and Crusader Kings II crossed my mind as well, but they would’ve had to take XCOM 2’s place and that was too tough of a sacrifice to make I think. Although actually, I suppose also could’ve taken RimWorld’s. Hmmm.

    Is your Runner Up #2 to Civ VI Stellaris? Doesn’t actually say, but from context and knowing you’ve tried it earlier it is my guess.

    On Modding and The Outer Worlds it may come post release, but I’m not holding my breath until it does. Plus I think it’d be the latter end of the year (at best) before we start to see the major mods we love so much for Skyrim and FO4. That’s mostly why I excluded it from my list even though I haven’t even finished the original play through yet.

    Thanks for sharing your list and thoughts, it’s pretty neat seeing everyone’s thought processes on this so far! 😀

    • I chose Civilization VI because of all of those I feel it gives more variety in terms of strategy. XCom 2 is varied too but I feel it is mostly in the combat missions. In terms of big decisions and endgame it eventually ends up all leading to the same place. Although I never tried any mods for it so maybe those could shake things up a bit.

      Yes, it is Stellaris. Thanks for catching that mistake. I corrected it now.

      For The Outer Worlds even if modding never comes I wouldn’t mind it too much. If the game by itself is good and offers plenty of replayability then I feel like modding can be something optional. For instance, I never felt the urge to mod Civilization games. While with Bethesda games, mods always helped to deal with game mechanics I found annoying, too shallow or change the game in ways I’d never considered before.

      Even if I feel like mods can improve The Outer Worlds I’d still play the whole game without them at least once just to get an idea of which parts of it I like and which ones I don’t.

      Thanks for making your list! If you hadn’t done it I would never know about this challenge and it was pretty fun to write. 🙂

      • Yeah — I prefer to play games (even Bethesda ones) through if not to completion* then at least a good significant amount before I start throwing in mods.

        *I can claim completion in very few of their games actually. xD So much actually interesting side stuff that I can wander off the beaten path for yonks!

        • Completing games is a problem I also have. At least I a mgetting better at that and usually I can stick to the main quest in Bethesda games long enough to finish it nowadays! XD

    • Challenges can make The Sims games pretty interesting. If you never done any I recommend The Random Legacy Challenge I linked above. If you prefer something more strict, there were some interesting ones at the Carl’s The Sims 3 Guide site: https://www.carls-sims-3-guide.com/challenges/

      They are all for The Sims 3 but if you prefer The Sims 4 then you might be able to adapt some of them or try looking for some for that game as I am sure people came up with a lot of them for that game already. 🙂

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