New Years Resolutions 2021: thrax Edition

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Not once in my life have I bothered making New Years Resolutions. All the ‘new year, new me’ crap just isn’t my deal at all, HOWEVER a 12 month period is decent measurement of time in which to aspire to complete a certain amount of games that I have part-played or sat on for years (some of them decades…) and claw at the back of my brain saying “what about me? I was a great game, why won’t you play me?”.

Well… this year I plan to stop their voices! From the old to new, the replays and the never started, 2021 is going to be a damn fine year for my own personal gaming If I manage to complete these titles. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure there will be plenty more games I play throughout the year, but these are my nagging desires to go back and put to bed once and for all (much like I did with FF7 and FF7:R this year). 

This list if by no means definitive of those that I haven’t played, as my Steam library alone could keep me entertained for years, but throughout my life these games have touched my heart (or look freaking cool) in one way or another and while I squeeze everything I can into my spare gaming time, when I look back on this post next year I’d like to be able to say I played through them all.

Have you got any games that you’ve wanted to play or finish for years and never seem to get around to playing them? Jump on Discord with us and let us know!

15. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

A Link to the Past Deep Dive, Part 1: How an Intro Began Redefining the Zelda We Knew | USgamer

LTTP is one of those games that I’ve played 100 times and completed 20+, but after a certain amount of time elapses I always feel the need to go back and see it through one more time. This game is amazing from the opening scene and I’ll forever remember my cousin and I running around Turtle Rock trying to the find the right tunnels and platforms to take through the dungeon.

The last time I got stuck into this classic was on the Nintendo Switch (via Nintendo Online) but this time I’m going to do it on Retroarch and see what I can do about knocking off some retro achievements while I’m at it!

14. Paper Mario: Sticker Star

Paper Mario: Sticker Star | Nintendo 3DS | Games | Nintendo

When Sticker Star dropped I was all over it and played it all the way through straight off the shelf – a feat that took quite some time (weeks or more if I remember correctly). Once I had completed it I had nothing but good memories and knew I’d have to replay it again one day. It may never see a third playthrough so this year I’m going to quench the thirst and likely retire Sticker Star for good afterwoods as we get ever closer to the end of DS/3DS gaming and there’s no signs that it will be ported out anytime soon.

While I own the game, even a 3DSXL feels uncomfortable for me to play so I’m still tossing up if I trust Citra’s ‘Okay’ compatibility and play it emulated only to find it broken or unenjoyable (and will that be ennough to get it off this list?!) or if I just suffer the 3DS and play it in its original form. Sure would be great if Nintendo had a back-catalogue of 1st party titles that could be played (or emulated) on modern consoles like the Switch!

13. The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks

The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks couldn't fix Hourglass's mistakes

Many moons ago I decided to give Spirit Tracks a run and despite its janky mechanics found it fun enough to sink a decent amount of time into. It also falls into the forgotten wasteland of DS titles that are unlikely to see any more fanfare, even if they do get another release one day and so putting it on this list will allow me to see the ending, know I’ve done the work, and retire it for good.

This one is definitely going to get run on Retroarch as it does have an achievement list, and I am keen for that!

12. Left4Dead / Left4Dead 2 (Co-op runs)

Left 4 Dead 2 cheap for PC

Anyone within earshot of me whenever a zombie gets mentioned will get regaled about my glory days playing competitive L4D and later L4D2. I have a wonderful love affair with both games and racked up hundreds of hours, mostly in competitive ladders and I like to think that we did pretty well.

Sadly the franchise did not have competitive staying power and unlikely CS:GO match making you don’t get punished for randomly dropping out of public lobbies in L4D making public match making a hell worse than death. These days it’s near impossible just to find 8 people to fill a server, let alone getting them to stick around the whole match. With Back4Blood now on the horizon I think the best I cann hope for now is a 4-player survivor co-op run through each L4D/L4D2 campaign and then lay the series to rest. I might even scored a couple of Steam achievements while I’m at it..

11. Final Fantasy VIII

Square Enix Wants to Forget Final Fantasy VIII Ever Existed

Did you know that I’m a big fan of Final Fantasy? Just in case you missed the 120+ hours of FF7 and FF7:R that I streamed in 2020, it’s fair to say that I enjoy a dabble in the famed JRPG franchise. That being said there’s heaps of FF titles I’ve never even played and a couple that I’ve started and never gotten back to. Two of those I’m going to aim at finishing this year, one of which is FF8 and the epic follow-up to my personal favourite (FF7.. Duh).

I’m going to run FF8 on Steam and see how close to an ‘achievement perfect’ playthrough I can get.

10. Final Fantasy III

Buy FINAL FANTASY III from the Humble Store

The second FF game I want to get through this year is FF3. Nothing special to say about it, I’ve put a few hours in and enjoyed what I started, time to go finish it off, also on Steam.

9. The Last Remnant

The Last Remnant (Video Game 2008) - IMDb

The Last Remnant is one of those under the radar Square games that they release with little fanfare, more so for them to test new gameplay mechanics to get feedback and perfect them without risking their big money IP (e.g. Final Fantasy) by gambling on un-proven innovations.

I think I put about 8 hours into this game around 8 years ago and it’s stuck with me ever since. Almost everything on this list I have an embedded love for and am either tying up loose ends or replaying classics, but in this case I’m more investing more time than I did previously to see if it goes somewhere good or if I can put it down as a solid no.

8. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

Download The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time PC Games | Free Games Dekstop

Yeah yeah, it’s OOT. I think everyone’s played it and likely completed it. This is another entry where it’s just been too long since I played the game through and I don’t want to spennd another year not playing it. I think I’ve watched far too many glitches and speedruns to worry about going for anything spectacular, I just want to see it through to the end.

My biggest decision here is do I play the 3DS version through Ctira (great compatibility), or the N64 version via Retroarch and pump up my Retroachievements score? Decisions, decisions…

7. We Were Here Together

Freezing Together (Again) | We Were Here Together PART 1 Co-Op Let's Play/Walkthrough | PC Gameplay - YouTube

Finally, a game on this list that I’ve never played before. In fact I’ve never even installed/loaded it before! I’ve heard some good stuff about We Were Here Together and it’s one of the few titles I saw pop up on The Blobb games list on Steam Curator.

This year I’ll find someone to play it with and see if it fills me with delight or boredom!

6. Lands of Lore: The Throne of Chaos

1993 – Lands of Lore: The Throne of Chaos | The CRPG Book Project

This is without a doubt one of the games that built my passion for RPG’s. Way back from the time of x486 computers and 2x CD-ROM readers (yes, READERS) comes this classic from Virgin / Westood that I’ve found a way to drag with me kicking and screaming into the 2020’s.

A couple of years ago I decided to dig in and finally complete this game, even going so far as to keep a save spot or two backwards in case I ran afoul and needed to back up a bit. Sadly there also happens to be a game-breaking bug that not only did I stumble into, but was spaced far enough apart (multi-level tower) that I’d already over-written the safety saves. Well, in 2021 I’m back on the horse and am going to take down Scotia once and for all! Fun fact: Sir Patrick Stewart voice acted in this gem.

5. Paper Mario: The Origami King

Paper Mario™: The Origami King for Nintendo Switch - Nintendo Game Details

This one’s a matter of breaking old habits… I started Origami King on stream just after it came out and then life got busy and when I got gaming again I’d moved back to PUBG and stopped streaming. Well on or off stream I’m going to beat the latest Paper Mario installment this year.

Watch out for 2022’s resolution where I drop in the other Paper Mario’s I haven’t done yet, ha!

4. Cat Quest II

Cat Quest II for Nintendo Switch - Nintendo Game Details

Way back when I was interviewing devs with GameOverMan we did an interview with Gentle Bros pre-release of Cat Quest. After some time past and I finally picked it up and played through it in the course of weekend or so; it was cute, punny, easy to play and fun.

I’m expecting a lot of the same from Cat Quest II and looking to complete it and archive it.

3. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild for Nintendo Switch - Nintendo Game Details

Ok, I know I have a Zelda problem. I probably know it more than anyone reading this! But damnit every game is so good I just can’t help myself! On release I dropped about 60+ hours into BOTW but made the mistake of binging one video game after another (with FFXV). I spent so many hours playing through the latest Final Fantasy that by the time I had finished I was ready for a more relaxed and casual game for a while, not another epic for the ages.

I’ll likely pickup my BOTW save (which is 2 mystical beasts down nand just before the master sword… I think…) and see it through rather than starting out a fresh playthrough – but it rips and gnaws at me that I never finished what has been hailed as the greatest Legend of Zelda ever made. Better late than never I hope!

2. Halo: Master Chief Collection (Co-op)

Xbox Series X, S will see optimized Halo: The Master Chief Collection - CNET

So I loved Halo, and got a kick out of Red Vs. Blue for the first 4-5 seasons… aaand I wennt ahead annd bought the Halo: Master Chief Collection PC with some mental idea that I would actually get into the multiplayer side of the game. Sadly it didn’t feel anywhere near good enough to topple CS:GO or PUBG off my ‘play with random humans’ games that soak up most of my gaming time and as such as sat dormant and unloved.

This year I’m going to team up with my best mate and see what we can do about running each game co-operatively, and I’m sure along the way I may gain more of an affinity for the online modes…. if they’ve picked up a bit since launch…

1. Back4Blood

Back 4 Blood

Last but not least is the Left4Dead spiritual successor by the same studio, and let’s face it this game would have been called Left4Dead3 if Valve didn’t still own the right to that franchise. This is also the only entry on this list that isn’t currently on the market!

With my aforementioned affinity for FPS zombie survival co-op games, B4B is basically my most anticipated title of this year. I’ll be incredibly interested to see if it turns out as anything more than a revamped L4D or if it soars to a whole the plane of competitive nirvana. Either way I’ll be looking forward to hitting this one hard the moment it’s released.