Looking at the releases this 1st quarter of 2010 I see many games I would love to buy. This really is one of the best 1st quarters we have ever seen. I have bought Bayonetta and that is it, the obvious reason being money. If I had money I would buy everything but I don't, and most of us don't so we pick and chose. We all have different reasons why we do so, I do as well but I don't understand myself sometimes. Many times I pass on games I know I will love. Sometimes I buy average games cause of a name or idea. Sometimes I go for the weird niche game, sometimes I don't. I am all over the place.

So earlier this year it was the whole Bayonetta and Darksiders debate. I had enough money for one game and I had decided on Bayonetta a long long time ago. Bayonetta goes into the lock category of mine, it's one of those games that all I need to see is one or two trailers, read a preview on it and I know 100% no matter what I will buy it. Usually these are sequels, but in the case of Bayonetta it was a spiritual sequel to a series I love dearly, DMC.

The locks are simple for the most part, if it has Zelda, Resident Evil, Metal Gear Solid, Super Mario and they are not weird spin offs, odds are they are mine day one.I am loyal to my favorite franchises and they get first priority almost always.

So lets look at recently released and upcoming releases, we got Dante's Inferno, Mass Effect 2,  Aliens vs. Predator, Bioshock 2, Heavy Rain, God of War 3, Final Fantasy XIII, Resident Evil 5 DLC, GTA: Episodes, Yakuza 3, and 3D Dot Game Heroes. I am probably missing some as well. Lots of big games, I have a birthday in March so I can buy a few. There are a few locks there, GoW3 is a lock, it is easily my most anticipated game from that list. RE DLC, is for sure and its cheap, but I would have paid almost anything. GTA is the other lock, I love this series I want more GTA.

So what about Final Fantasy XIII, here is where things get crazy. Here is a series that I have been buying games on day one since FFVII. I did not like RPGs, in fact I would say FFVII is the first RPG I ever finished. The reason I bought it  was that it was a large event. The hype was so huge that you had to buy the game or you are some weirdo loser. So I got it and loved it. Each FF since has felt like a major event so I usually get them. I didn't care for FFIX, FFX left me disappointed, I love but have not finished FFXII (FFXI doesn't count), so here I am wondering why get FFXIII. I want it cause it is a major event, cause everyone will be playing it. I know I will like it, I know it will be good, but if it wasn't "Final Fantasy" would I feel like getting it on day one... probably not. I am actually questioning myself, FF games were always a lock and now I am wondering should they be. I can't shake this feeling that when the game is released I will feel so left out that I will need to buy it.

What about Bioshock 2, sequel to one of my favorite FPSs of all time. There is no doubt that I will LOVE this game and I don't want it right now. WTF. I honestly don't give a crap that it is coming out next week. Yeah there will be mega hype, lots of people will be playing it, but Bioshock doesn't give me that feeling of being left out, I feel like I can wait on that game just fine. Why is that? I think part of it is that it is a FPS, they never have been my thing. I can't for the life of me get excited for a FPS. But I don't care for RPGs either but for some reason I can get more excited for a cool looking RPG than a FPS even though I probably like far more FPSs than RPGs. Another reason might be that I waited on Bioshock 1, I got it for like $15 so now I feel like "hey I waited for that one, why not wait for this one to go down in price." I have this thing where if I buy one game cheap, I automatically feel like that franchise should always be bought cheap.

Lets move away from the obvious genres and get into the weird stuff like Heavy Rain. I am ready to rent it but I feel like I can be swayed into buying if it gets good enough reviews and if I hear the replay value is great. Here is a game that I want to play simply cause it is so different than anything else. I want to play it on day one cause I want to experience this weird experience with everyone else. Every once and a while a game comes out with an interesting premise that I just need to try out, but not necessarily buy. I still think I will rent it cause if I buy it I think I lose FFXIII.

3D Dot Game Heroes fits under this category as well, technically it is a very weird game that hasn't been done before. There hasn't been a classic style 2D Zelda game on consoles in many many years. Obviously the reason I am so excited about it is cause it is like Zelda, but that falls under the interesting premise category. This one is funny cause I know it won't be that great, I know there are better games but it fills a niche I love so I will be there day one.

Yakuza 3, damn you Sega for choosing such a crappy release date. I cannot stress enough how important release dates are to my buying habits and I assume others as well. If this gets released in the middle of a month with no good releases and I so happen to have enough money to buy one game I will get this game. But in a month when a billion major titles are coming out I can't squeeze out the money. You can say well why don't you buy it on one of those off months anyway, well as months go by interest in released games go down, I am far more likely to buy whatever interesting game comes out in July than look for a game that came out months ago. When I don't buy a game at release I feel that I can wait until the price drops. I either buy it full price on launch week or wait months and get it cheaper (or rent of course). I don't think I ever or ever will buy a game at full price over a month after it has come out (unless its the holidays).  Yakuza 3 won't be the greatest  game ever, but it's a sequel to a game that I enjoyed, it's different and it's going to be hard to find if I don't buy it. Yakuza 3 is going to guilt me into buying it cause if I don't I am one of those people that are part of the reason why games like Yakuza usually don't come to the US. :(

That leaves us with the games like Aliens vs Predator, Dante's Inferno, Darksiders. When it comes to games like those they need to have incredible review scores and buzz. I can't fit a game that doesn't seem to stand out and is getting just good to great scores. I would love to play Darksiders, it's game that is made just for guys like me, but it is not GOTY material, it's not a franchise I love, it wasn't a big event. It kind of just came out and the only reason I even paid attention to it was cause of Leo, so bad timing and bad marketing ( I dont mean TV commercials, I mean generating excitement for your game). That would be a perfect summer game, when there isn't much coming out.  So these games usually end up in my renting spree at some point in the year or I find very cheap.

Notice how I did not mention one Wii game, honestly I feel like almost every Wii game fits into that last category. It's a land of games that don't stand out, that aren't going to be the best of the best. I don't even think about the console half the time. I know when Nintendo games will hit, thats all I need to know. Oh and Epic Mickey has me interested cause it will probably be great and it is very interesting to me, I love Disney. I don't know what is coming out on the Wii and I don't care all of it can wait for bargain hunting as far as I am concerned. I know there will be a few games that I buy cheap that will become some of my favorites of the year and yet I wouldn't pay for its sequel at full price either (example Boom Blox).

So there you have it, I buy franchises that I love but only if I had bought them at full price before. I like mega hyped games but not if its a FPS and yet I will sometimes get a mega hyped RPG even though I generally enjoy FPSs more than RPGs. I buy games with interesting concepts but only if it is a semi hyped or it focuses on something I love. If I don't buy a game at launch I can wait for months later no matter how much I know I will love it.

Posted by Dvader Fri, 05 Feb 2010 04:32:40 (comments: 29)
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Fri, 05 Feb 2010 05:06:42
Pretty easy, if you ask me.  FFXII got a crap reception, Bioshock doesn't have a lot of places to go and multiplayer is pointless, 3D Block Heroes is Zelda and looks awesome visually, and there aren't any blockbuster Wii titles and you're a sucker for production values.
Fri, 05 Feb 2010 06:24:06

^(First, I agree with Yodariquo) And you can take Yakuza 3 off the list since you have not played #2 yet.  Rent Heavy Rain, that's probably the right call -- that dev will continue to make those kind of games regardless of your support, and there are plenty of people like me who will buy it on day one on principle.

Also... you played  Bayonetta  times? Holy shit!  How many times have you played any of the DMC series?

Fri, 05 Feb 2010 11:50:28

Be more selective. Wait for certain games to go for cheap later.

That, or get in touch with a LOT of game publishers and ask for free stuff.

Fri, 05 Feb 2010 11:56:47

I have this thing where if I buy one game cheap, I automatically feel like that franchise should always be bought cheap.

I get that.

It's a land of games that don't stand out

No More Heroes 2 doesn't stand out? Silent Hill Shattered Memories doesn't stand out? Endless Ocean 2 doesn't stand out? A motionplus, cel shaded, sword fighting game doesn't stand out?


Fri, 05 Feb 2010 12:36:39
"Dante's Inferno, Mass Effect 2,  Aliens vs. Predator, Bioshock 2, Heavy Rain, God of War 3, Final Fantasy XIII, Resident Evil 5 DLC, GTA: Episodes, Yakuza 3, and 3D Dot Game Heroes."

"It's a land of games that don't stand out"

Sounds about right! Nyaa
Fri, 05 Feb 2010 17:52:15
Your confused about your own game buying habits? I own 7 Zelda games, and I don't even like Zelda! Sad
Fri, 05 Feb 2010 19:16:42

Oh god, so much fail in one blog. 

The worst thing being buying games because they are a "main event" or "hyped".

Fri, 05 Feb 2010 20:02:09

^That's not so bad, I mean Vader is pretty involved in discussing games, so it would only be natural for him to want to buy games that his friends are talking about.

It's a lot more prone among 360 players (as discussed in the last VGPress podcast) because of the success of XBL (everyone sees what the hot game is which makes them feel left out if they are not playing it).  I also wonder if Twitter helps this along as well).

Sat, 06 Feb 2010 10:36:59

I dont know, that aspect sounds really bad, wanting to buy games because its the popular thing.

It would be like someone wearing the latest, hottest trainers because everyone else is getting them. It's very teenager-ish.

No offence Vader! Happy

Sun, 07 Feb 2010 08:52:54
It is tough when there are so many releases coming out all at once in a short period of time. But I say go with your gut and which games you must-have and which ones you can wait until later.

Like for me, I really want Lunar for the PSP and Sakura Wars because these are games I've been wanting. While Bioshock 2 or Dante's Inferno are games I'm willing to wait for. I figure since the first Bioshock and Dead Space are only $20 now, I'm sure Bioshock 2 and Dante's Inferno will be cheaper later on. These aren't going anywhere. But games like Sakura Wars or Fragile Dreams are niche games that may not be available later. So I tend to snag these rarer releases first and wait to get the big name games later.

I guess you just have to choose wisely. Which games feel like it'll be worth it and which ones are titles that you don't really need at the moment. That's how I always buy my games.

Then there are those games, like you mentioned, are games I want on day one, the franchises we love. Those are no-brainers obviously, even though technically we can buy them later on, but I'm selfish sometimes and lack the patience to wait for them, which always gets me at the end.
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