Play or Pass: A Post-Mortem

Why am I writing this? It’s an interesting story…maybe. Having done a couple other writing series in the past, I never really thought about doing any sort of wrap-up posts for them. Much like with TV shows these days, they simply ended, and I moved on. But once I had finished up my final “Play or Pass” post, I began tooling around in my blog’s statistics. WordPress usually sends out year-end reviews, but with nothing like that appearing in my inbox (maybe they aren’t doing them this year?), I took a little time to see how my year in writing had turned out. What struck me most is that although I was down considerably in overall views, I was way up in likes and comments. In fact, last year I received the most likes and comments since starting this blog in 2011. And that made me smile, because it meant that my writing had sparked more conversations than ever before.

Now, I must admit that I’ve no desire to get very granular with the stats — I did write and post other things over the course of 2016 — but with “Play or Pass” playing (haha) a significant role on my blog last year, it’s worth doing an epilogue post of sorts. I guess.

Could be that I’ve simply nothing to write about at the moment. Or maybe I’ve runn off with Metal Gear Ac!d. Who knows! In any event, let’s talk “Play or Pass.”

Continue reading “Play or Pass: A Post-Mortem”

Play or Pass: Pokemon

Welcome to the FINAL post in my year-long series “Play or Pass” that takes on the proverbial “must before death” theme with video games. Every other week I will be covering one or two games from “32 Video Games You Have To Play Before You Die,” a list compiled by BuzzFeed based on a reader poll. I will not be critiquing the list itself, but rather I’ll be discussing each game or games in whatever manner feels fitting and will attempt to answer a couple simple questions: Have I played [insert game name here]? If yes, do I consider it a “must” and why? If no, do I want to play the game before I die? I’ll be going through the games in the order in which they appear on the BuzzFeed list. Good? Good. Let’s get on with the games!


Week twenty-five: (32) Pokemon

too many pokemon 2

Alright folks, we’ll here we are…the last “Play or Pass” post. *sniff*

Before I get all weepy (and I probably will), we have one more game to discuss. Or, in this case, a series in general, I suppose, since these days, telling someone to play a Pokemon game is like telling someone to eat a pizza — it’s far too broad a statement to make.

But before I narrow things down,  let me say a thing here about the Pokemon games:

They are the best kept secrets that everyone knows about.

That doesn’t make much sense…

…or does it?

Continue reading “Play or Pass: Pokemon”

Play or Pass: Banjo-Kazooie and Chrono Trigger

Welcome to the next post in my year-long series “Play or Pass” that takes on the proverbial “must before death” theme with video games. Every other week I will be covering one or two games from “32 Video Games You Have To Play Before You Die,” a list compiled by BuzzFeed based on a reader poll. I will not be critiquing the list itself, but rather I’ll be discussing each game or games in whatever manner feels fitting and will attempt to answer a couple simple questions: Have I played [insert game name here]? If yes, do I consider it a “must” and why? If no, do I want to play the game before I die? I’ll be going through the games in the order in which they appear on the BuzzFeed list. Good? Good. Let’s get on with the games!


Week twenty-four: (30) Banjo-Kazooie and (31) Chrono Trigger

Banjo-Kazooie cover art © Rare, Nintendo
Banjo-Kazooie cover art © Rare, Nintendo

Well, here we are in the top three. Yup, only three more games and this “Play or Pass” series is over. (sad face)

So…yep…

…uh…

Continue reading “Play or Pass: Banjo-Kazooie and Chrono Trigger”

Play or Pass: Mario Party 2

Welcome to the next post in my year-long series “Play or Pass” that takes on the proverbial “must before death” theme with video games. Every other week I will be covering one or two games from “32 Video Games You Have To Play Before You Die,” a list compiled by BuzzFeed based on a reader poll. I will not be critiquing the list itself, but rather I’ll be discussing each game or games in whatever manner feels fitting and will attempt to answer a couple simple questions: Have I played [insert game name here]? If yes, do I consider it a “must” and why? If no, do I want to play the game before I die? I’ll be going through the games in the order in which they appear on the BuzzFeed list. Good? Good. Let’s get on with the games!


Week twenty-two: (28) Mario Party 2

Mario Party 2 cover art © Nintendo

If you’ve followed me for awhile, you may have noticed that I tend to be a little down on multiplayer. That’s just me. And only me. At this stage in life, I’m simply in a place where I prefer single-player games. But, as I’ve likely alluded to before, my gaming life wasn’t always like that. In fact, I grew up playing games with others — siblings, friends, second cousins first removed — and I enjoyed gaming that way. When a game called for two or more people, I found two or more people to play with. When the game didn’t, but we still had a group of players, we did the ol’ “pass the controller” routine. That’s how it was. It really wasn’t until I was introduced to Super Metroid, and around the same time, PC gaming, that I became interested in a more solitary style of play.

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Play or Pass: Street Fighter II

Welcome to the next post in my year-long series “Play or Pass” that takes on the proverbial “must before death” theme with video games. Every other week I will be covering one or two games from “32 Video Games You Have To Play Before You Die,” a list compiled by BuzzFeed based on a reader poll. I will not be critiquing the list itself, but rather I’ll be discussing each game or games in whatever manner feels fitting and will attempt to answer a couple simple questions: Have I played [insert game name here]? If yes, do I consider it a “must” and why? If no, do I want to play the game before I die? I’ll be going through the games in the order in which they appear on the BuzzFeed list. Good? Good. Let’s get on with the games!


Week twenty-one: (27) Street Fighter II

In the BuzzFeed list upon which this series is based, its says the following about this week’s game:

Street Fighter 2 is the first game that made the arcade feel like a real battleground.

Unfortunately, I can’t speak to that reference personally; I never played Street Fighter II in the arcade. (Yes II. I can’t use plain ol’ numbers when referring to SF games. It’s just not right!) In fact, I can’t speak to anything about Street Fighter II because I never played it. But! I played later iterations of the game, namely Street Fighter II Turbo, Super Street Fighter II, and Hyper Street Fighter II. And while I’ve written about this favorite series of fighting games, here and elsewhere, I now have visual proof!

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Play or Pass: Halo 2 and Age of Empires II

Welcome to the next post in my year-long series “Play or Pass” that takes on the proverbial “must before death” theme with video games. Every other week I will be covering one or two games from “32 Video Games You Have To Play Before You Die,” a list compiled by BuzzFeed based on a reader poll. I will not be critiquing the list itself, but rather I’ll be discussing each game or games in whatever manner feels fitting and will attempt to answer a couple simple questions: Have I played [insert game name here]? If yes, do I consider it a “must” and why? If no, do I want to play the game before I die? I’ll be going through the games in the order in which they appear on the BuzzFeed list. Good? Good. Let’s get on with the games!


Week twenty: (25) Halo 2 and (26) Age of Empires II

Though we didn’t intend for it to happen, our Xbox One has become the odd man out among our collections of consoles. I wish I was kidding when I say that, since the start of 2016, the thing has seen less gaming action than our Wii, Wii U, and GameCube! Seriously, that’s really saying something. We’ve both played a few things here and there in fits and starts – Dragon Age: Inquisition, Rare Replay, Mass Effect – but we really use it for watching movies more than anything. And we don’t watch movies very often so…

…yeah. The poor, neglected Xbox One. 😦

We thought the Halo: The Master Chief Collection might change that.

Continue reading “Play or Pass: Halo 2 and Age of Empires II”

Play or Pass: Borderlands 2

Welcome to the next post in my year-long series “Play or Pass” that takes on the proverbial “must before death” theme with video games. Every other week I will be covering one or two games from “32 Video Games You Have To Play Before You Die,” a list compiled by BuzzFeed based on a reader poll. I will not be critiquing the list itself, but rather I’ll be discussing each game or games in whatever manner feels fitting and will attempt to answer a couple simple questions: Have I played [insert game name here]? If yes, do I consider it a “must” and why? If no, do I want to play the game before I die? I’ll be going through the games in the order in which they appear on the BuzzFeed list. Good? Good. Let’s get on with the games!


Week nineteen: (24) Borderlands 2

When the first Borderlands was released, I was all meh about it. When the second one was released, I was all meh about it. When the Pre-Sequel!® I was released, I was all meh about it. When all of it’s DLC was released, I was…

…well, you get the idea.

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Play or Pass: Sonic the Hedgehog 2

Welcome to the next post in my year-long series “Play or Pass” that takes on the proverbial “must before death” theme with video games. Every other week I will be covering one or two games from “32 Video Games You Have To Play Before You Die,” a list compiled by BuzzFeed based on a reader poll. I will not be critiquing the list itself, but rather I’ll be discussing each game or games in whatever manner feels fitting and will attempt to answer a couple simple questions: Have I played [insert game name here]? If yes, do I consider it a “must” and why? If no, do I want to play the game before I die? I’ll be going through the games in the order in which they appear on the BuzzFeed list. Good? Good. Let’s get on with the games!


Week eighteen: (23) Sonic the Hedgehog 2

gfs_45480_1_1

Well…this just isn’t my month, is it? Because here’s another Mario Kart situation. And it’s only with slightly less embarrassment that I must admit that I’ve never played a Sonic game.  Though, I don’t feel quite as terrible about it, for you see, I grew up in a Nintendo household.

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