If I could only play five games in a year… (2020 version)

Naithin of Time to Loot made a pretty interesting post about a 5 Games Challenge. It is sort of a challenge where he is allowed to play only five games of his choice for a year. If the idea seems curious to you as well then just read his post for all the details.

Initially I thought that if I was in that situation my picks would be pretty easy as there are enough games with good repeatable content that I enjoy and could keep me entertained for a year.

But the more I thought about it the more I realized it was not quite that simple. I have a very fickle mind. What I feel like playing can completely change overnight. Even if I am heavily playing a certain type of game for a week that desire to play it might simply vanish the next day as I feel like playing something different. Extend that for a whole year and I am not sure I could comfortably do it.

Yet for the sake of this mental exercise let me try to pick five games that could last me for a year.

EDIT: This is embarrassing. As Naithin pointed in the comments turns out I already did a post like this last year! With the same title too! XD

Oh, well, for anyone curious on how my list change from the previous year, you can find the post here.

Civilization VI

When it comes to games with good replayable content it is hard to beat the Civilization games. The latest entry in particular not only has a lot of different civilizations to pick from, each with their different specialties, but there are plenty of interesting options to generate maps making it hard to predict what kind of game you will get.

And that isn’t even getting into unlocking achievements! There is a ton of them in Civilization VI and to this day I haven’t even got all the ones from the base game. If I were to play just to unlock the achievements it could end up taking me the whole year!

Skyrim Special Edition/Fallout 4

Me thinks Fallout 4 is up for another replay.

Ok, I am cheating with this pick. But since they are essentially the same game just with different flavors and settings I am counting it as one.

Now here is the thing: I don’t actually love these games by themselves. What I love about them is their potential, something that is often realized by the modders. The mods not only keep the games fresh, they often made me realize how much better these games could be better with a different system or a certain addition.

As long as there are good mods out there to play these games with I will keep playing them.

Fate Grand Order

While I chose the other games in this list for their depth, replay ability or both, Fate Grand Order has none of those. I mean, 90% of the time I can just use a quickly made together team and finish any content available. It is only with Challenge Quests and Boss fights when I actually need to think about a strategy.

Yet I have been playing this game constantly for the last… two years? Three? I don’t even remember anymore. The point is I don’t see myself stop playing it any time soon. With the constant stream of content in the form of events and new chapters I am also not worried about getting bored with the game. My only nitpick is that some of those events can be so grindy as to take too much time. Time that some times I wish would be spent playing another game! But I guess that is just the nature of most mobile/online games.

Final Fantasy XIV

Cutscene screenshot because I don’t feel like getting in the game just for one screenshot! Sorry!

At this point this pick is kinda in shaky grounds. Partly because at the moment of this writing I just have not been feeling like playing Final Fantasy XIV at all. I mean, I still have plenty of story that I want to see. The problem is it is locked behind an iLevel requirement and I just don’t feel like grinding to get the gear upgrades I need.

The other reason is the economy here is pretty crappy right now. That means I need to cut down certain costs. Final Fantasy XIV is on the table for those cuts. Even now my plan is still to just unsubscribe once I finish the story patches for Shadowbringers… which my whole procrastination to get those gear upgrades isn’t helping with but I digress.

The point is, as much as I love this game, as much as I want to see where the story goes, the reality is I don’t know how much I’d play of this game in a span of a year. If there wasn’t the economic factor I wouldn’t mind it that much. Unfortunately that isn’t the case so this makes this picky a tricky proposition.

Splatoon 2

Some times I am more in the mood for something more action-oriented. Unfortunately most of the action games that interest me don’t lead themselves all that well for replayability. Splatoon 2 however might be the exception.

I say might because I played a lot of the first Splatoon game. And I mean a lot. For a few months I’d play it for about 30 minutes every day and enjoyed every minute of it. With Splatoon 2 I didn’t get hooked as much, probably in part because it initially felt so similar to its predecessor, of which I had enough of a fill of. The other part is because when Splatoon 2 released there were (and still are) a whole lot of other games competing for my attention so it keeps getting neglected.

Still I keep meaning to delve more into Splatoon 2 and get the most out of it. Being limited to 5 games in year would be a good excuse to do that.

The Challenge

Naithin also came with the idea of doing an actual challenge event with this idea. Except that instead of a whole year it would be just a month with the option of doing a post every day about the games being played.

I’ve been pondering if I should participate too. The reason for all my pondering is basically one of motivation. As far as challenge goes being limited to 5 games in a month isn’t hard, it is actually pretty easy. Posting everyday though is hard and not something I can commit to right now.

But I do want to post more and I am thinking that I might just take the idea and do some experimentation with it. I am just not sure about the details and even if I do it might end up just a personal thing that I won’t even do a public announcement about. We’ll see.


Picking just these 5 games was hard. In fact every time I thought about this list I kept picking one or two different games than the ones that ended here. I would even bet that if I were to actually try to play only these games I’d regret picking them in less than 3 months.

I guess that is the interesting part about these thought experiments: we can play with some extreme scenarios without having to actually go through them and have regrets. Because, really I doubt I’d enjoy doing this challenge for a whole year.

9 thoughts on “If I could only play five games in a year… (2020 version)”

  1. It’s interesting looking back at this and what you picked last year! You dropped Yakuza 0 and The Sims 3 in favour of FGO and Splatoon 2 this time around it seems. And last year you came down on the side of Skyrim over FO4 or hedging bets.

    In terms of the challenge side — posting every day is certainly a very, very, optional element. Heck not sure I’m even going to make it myself at this point. My evening time is not entirely my own right now, which I might get to in a post sooner or later. Just realised it has been a week since my last one!

    • I swear I didn’t remember I wrote a post about it last year! If you didn’t comment about it I would continue being completely oblivious to it! XD

      Oh, well, I will edit the post and note it. Thanks for pointing it out!

      I know the posting everyday part is optional. The problem is more that I don’t want to stick to just the five games in this list. There are a few games I’d like to get back to Soon ™ and being restricted to these games would put a wrench on those plans. But I just choose some arbitrary games to play during the month then I am just doing a goal for that month which I already tried to do in the past and found it didn’t work out for me.

      What I think I will do is to just play as I usually do and try to post more.

      • Haha, I wondered if you might have forgotten with no reference to last year’s version of the post! xD

        I hear you on wanting to play some other things soon though, I think that really is the crux of the ‘challenge’ part. I actively put games aside that I was *already* playing when I decided to just do this on a whim last year.

        And yarr, it was *hard*. Far harder than the fact it was only a 5 game range in and of itself. I only ended up playing two on my list, but major updates for other games came out and of course the ones I put aside to begin with were still there… Yep. xD

        • I had a lot of embarrassing moments in my life due to my bad memory but this is a completely new one. Also, it is no wonder why I kept thinking the title for this post may not be a good idea. XD

          I could see that part being hard. There are a few games I keep meaning to revisit and I am planning to do that soon. But if I were to take that challenge I’d have to postpone those plans.

      • I think the most I could do was three months. :p Although I do lately tend to play the same game only… But I’m like you – what I want to play and like playing changes quickly! Apart from some games that I just want to “fall back on” like Guild Wars 2. I’ve been playing it for such a long time, it would feel weird to arbitrarily stay away.

        • Yeah, I think the whole concept of the challenge is a bit too hardcore for most people. There isn’t much of a reason to do it too besides… I dunno, bragging rights? *shrugs*

          Same for me on just arbitrary stopping playing some games. Either because they are “comfort food” for the mind or because we’ve been playing them so consistently that it feels just like an habit.

          • Oh yes, the comfort food-games! I think GW2 is exactly that for me. I was briefly considering doing this limitation for a couple of months, only to get myself to play the games I always want to play but never end up playing (Grim Dawn, Age of Reckoning, …).

  2. Replying to Paeroka since the blog reached the limit to nested comments: I thought about doing the same for a month. But like I said to Naithin then it would feel more like a “Games goals” rather than a challenge. And I already tried those goals in the past and didn’t work out for me.

    I think for me it is just best to keep continue keeping my choice of games for a month freeform and just try to mix things more.

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