I keep a big Excel spreadsheet of all the video games I buy (it’s much easier to keep updated than The Backloggery), and I thought that it would be fun to break down all that info into numbers. Because I’m a big old nerd and I love organizing data and determining statistics. There’s really not much else to say about it, so let’s jump right in!
Video games “purchased” in 2017 : 148
That’s a lot! Like, too many! But let’s look at some numbers that might make it seem less crazy. (Please note that neither this figure nor any below take into account the SNES Classic Mini.) Things seemed to be going well (aside from “Switch mania”), but then I bought two Halloween bundles, and the year-end sales really got to me, and the number just got really inflated.
Games that were free : 26 (18%)
Games that came in bundles : 51 (34%)
The term “free” covers several cases. Mostly free-to-play games and monthly PS+ downloads. But there’s also at least one cross-buy counted, and games gifted to me are included there.
“Bundles” don’t only mean Humble Bundles and the like. I also included any instances where multiple games were purchased for one price, such as Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove.
Double-dips : 18 (12%)
Paid DLC / microtransactions : 7 (5%)
On the opposite side of the spectrum, there are a lot of games purchased that I already own on another machine. Simple ports and HD remasters are counted, but full-on remakes are not.
Thankfully, I didn’t spend very much money on additional content or premium currencies in freemium games. A lot of games supplied free DLC this year, which is awesome!
Physical games : 19 (13%)
Digital games : 129 (87%)
I can still remember a time where I was a staunch supporter of buying physical as often as possible. And now… there are so many advantages to buying digital that I can’t help myself. There’s only one tax, you can usually get a really good sale, they don’t take up room on the shelf, I don’t have to go to the store… I often wonder how much money I’d save if digital distribution’s ease to impulse buy wasn’t a thing.
2017 games played : 82 (55%)
2017 games beaten : 45 (30%)
2017 games done : 40 (27%)
Keep in mind that these stats are only relative to games acquired in 2017. Does not include any games purchased in a previous year. There’s also an important distinction between Beaten and Done. Beaten signifies that I have “rolled the credits” or whatever the equivalent might be. Done is a little looser, as it means that I am completely done with a game. This could mean that I played it to 100% completion, or that I gave up after 20 minutes and never intend to return, or that I lost access to it because I cancelled my PS+ subscription. Or something else along those lines.
I did give my figures a somewhat questionable boost with a few games that can’t be beaten or completed in any measurable factor, like Namco Museum, and immediately filed them under both Beaten and Done. Still, I think the fact that I didn’t even get around to trying 46% of the games I bought last year is rock-solid evidence that I bought far too many games.
3DS games purchased : 15 (10%)
DS games purchased : 1 (1%)
Wii U games purchased : 12 (8%)
Switch games purchased : 36 (24%)
PS3 games purchased : 3 (2%)
PS4 games purchased : 33 (22%)
Steam games purchased : 40 (27%)
iOS games purchased : 8 (5%)
There are a lot of little notes that come out of this data…
For one, I didn’t think I had bought that many PS4 games, but then I remembered that a third of those games were free with PS+ and I likely never would have bothered with them otherwise.
I also went a little nutty in March-August, buying up any Switch game that even vaguely piqued my interest. Such is life with a new console in a world where game rentals no longer exist.
If I hadn’t bought any IndieGala bundles, I would have paid for exactly 4 Steam games last year.
I considered breaking down all these numbers by played/beat/done, but there’s just no way to display that nicely in WordPress without a significant amount of effort. So the totals will just have to suffice.
Finally, because I love to compare statistics…
Video games purchased in 2016 : 184 (19.5% decrease in 2017)
2016 games played : 82 (44%)
2016 games beaten : 47 (25%)
2016 games done : 49 (26%)
Holy crow! No wonder I couldn’t afford to keep my house! I bought way too many games in 2016! And I didn’t even boot up half of them! It gets even worse when you consider that all of these numbers continued to increase in 2017. Perhaps my goal for 2018 should be to stop impulse-buying video games. Also to unsubscribe from the Humble Bundle and Indie Gala newsletters.
(If you really wanna know, I’ve only bought one game in 2018 so far.)