Shack Chat: What's the top game in your backlog?

This week, the Shack Staff gets real about their video game backlogs.


Shack Chat is back once again, our weekly feature where each Friday where we’ll ask the Shacknews staff to give their opinion on a particular topic, then open the floor to our dedicated Chatty community to provide a diverse mixture of thoughts on the subject. It’s a great way for us to get to know one another better while inspiring healthy debates with all of you passionate gamers out there. This week, we've got questions about our gaming backlogs. 

Question: What's the top game in your backlog?

Resident Evil 7 - Asif Khan, Lola's Butler

The game is super spoopy, so I never got around to beating it. I was also waiting for the game to get PC VR support, but then realized it is too scary to play in virtual reality. Basically it sits in my backlog because I am too afraid to play the game. Looking forward to talking myself into playing RE2: Remake next year.

Hitman 2 - Bill Lavoy, The Sheltered Gamer

I could fill a truck with the games that are in my backlog. Not just in my backlog, but games (or even franchises) that I’ve not played that someone in our business should have played. For the purpose of this question, though, I’m going to go with something in my own personal backlog that I have a desire to play, not just something I feel an obligation to play.

There are three games that come to mind; Horizon Zero Dawn, Civilization 6, and Hitman 2. I’ve tried Horizon Zero Dawn for about three hours split between two sessions. I couldn’t get enough momentum to come back to it the next day. I can’t pass the point where I know I’d be hooked, and I suspect I would be.

Civilization 6 is more about time. I put 431 hours into Civilization 5, and I just can’t put that into this one. Between Destiny 2 obligations and the number of big games that I’ve taken the lead on for guides in 2018, this one has just slipped away from me.

However, neither of those are the game in my backlog I feel the worst about. Hitman 2, although it has only been out a short time, is the one I think about every day and wish I had time to play. I did log in to kill Sean Bean, but I have yet to touch any of the new locations or missions. I put a tad more than 250 hours into Hitman 2016 between PS4 and PC, and I loved every second of it. Once I’ve squared away my Destiny 2 obligations and we’ve hit the holidays, I’ll be spending a lot of time in Hitman 2.

Blake Morse, Old-School JRPG Fan

I was so excited about Octopath Traveler that I pre-ordered the collector’s edition of the game. When it got here, I immediately opened it, looked at all the cool little trinkets it came with and put it all to the side because I’m the reviews editor at a video game website and this thing is going to take me tens of hours I don’t have to play it. It didn’t help that it came out right in the middle of convention season either. I’ve basically been Blaketopath traveling instead of playing it.

It’s even become my excuse for never playing other games that people recommend to me. If someones all “You should play game X” I simply tell them that I will get around to checking it out as soon as I’ve beat Octopath Traveler. Part of me never wants to play it because it’s such a good excuse to not play other things, but this retro style JRPG was made for fans me and I know that someday, hopefully not too far into the future, I will actually find time to sit down, chill out, and beat this beast of a game.

For now, though, maybe don’t recommend anything else for me to play.

God of War (2018) - Kevin S. Tucker, Purveyor

I somehow managed to entirely miss God of War. I see the game’s icon on the home screen every time I boot up my PlayStation 4, and yet every time I see it I have no time to dive in. I’m a big fan of both the series and of Norse mythology, which only makes the situation sting more than it should. I know that it’s good, and I’m almost certain that I will like it, which is not typically the case with new or recent video game releases. As it stands now, I just haven’t been able to set aside the time needed to enjoy it properly.

Maybe I’ll be able to catch up to speed with Kratos and son sometime in 2019. You know, on one of those chance rainy days when I magically don’t have anything else going on. Or, at the very least, maybe I can make a hasty run through the game in the weeks leading up to its inevitable sequel, whenever that may be.

Xenogears - Brittany Vincent, Senior Editor

I never had the actual game to finish this as a kid and I don’t have time now as an adult to play it. But I'm certainly going to try to make time to finish it up in the future. This is an arbitrary answer, because nearly every great game I want to finish is in my backlog at this point. 

Detroit: Become Human - Ozzie Mejia, Senior Editor

It isn't like I've been actively avoiding Detroit: Become Human, because what I played of it for my hands-on preview was captivating. As someone who loves a good story in games, I was at the very least curious to see what the rest of the game had to offer.

Unfortunately, late May tends to be a busy time in this line of work, especially if you're a games writer based in Los Angeles. Detroit fell right around E3 Judges Week, which meant I was incapacitated the whole week with Asif and Greg. Between that, the Street Fighter 30th Anniversary review, and diving into Runner3, there just wasn't enough time for me to fully engage with David Cage's latest. And with the latter half of the year eating up my time with certain Game of the Year contenders (you know which ones), Detroit remains at the top of my pile of shame.

Honorable mention to Dead Cells, which the world has been buzzing about this year and has somehow remained in my backlog.

Persona 5 - Charles Singletary, News Editor

My love for RPGs regularly bites me in the butt and you need to look no further than my top backlog selection to know why. Persona 5 is a highly regarded JRPG in a series that I absolutely adore, but it launched over two years ago and I’ve yet to get beyond two hours into the game.

There are a handful of reasons why I couldn’t get to the game sooner, but the main reason is: I want to play it uninterrupted all the way through. The general consensus is that it would take me around 100 hours or so to complete Persona 5 and that’s a big no no for my productivity. Games writing is a monster and the nature of this beast is that we must move from game to game throughout the year. On occasion, that leaves some titles in the dust and most RPGs that I’m really clamoring to check out have to be put on hold unless they’re part of a current assignment.

Unless you missed the wonderful news, the Persona series will be celebrated with Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s first DLC. Joker from Person 5 will be representing the game in the crossover fighter and will also be representing my constant shame whenever I unlock him.

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain - Chris JarrardHas 592 Steam Icons (and the occasional phantom pain)

They tell me I should play Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. I had plans to a few years ago when I bought the game at release. Supposedly it is a good game with boobs and a dog. I loved the original Metal Gear on the NES (even though it was rage-inducingly difficult), but never got into the later entries of the series under the Solid branding.

I still haven’t played it. I’m not sure if I will. Am I making a big mistake? [[Big mistake. Big. Huge. -- K-Tuck]]

Has No Idea - Greg Burke, The Video Jerk

I have a lot of games in my backlog, and everytime I try to tackle one of them I end up playing Heroes of the Storm for 4 hours or World Of Warcraft. It’s actually quite frustrating. I feel as you get older, your time becomes more and more vabule. So rather than try new things, you stick to the things or in this case, “games” you really enjoy. But if I had to pick one game it would have to be Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, or For Honor, wait, no, ummm, Hollow Knight, Pokemon Let’s Go Pikachu! Way too many to basically narrow it down to one game.

Mass Effect 2 (and 3) Sam Chandler, Won't Pick A Cool Title

Look, I know you’re disappointed in me. All of my friends are disappointed in me. But most of all, I’m disappointed in me - but it can’t be helped, Mass Effect 2 and 3 are sitting there on my shelf, still wrapped in plastic from when I bought them from EB Games. To make matters worse, they are both the collector’s edition. I want to play these games, but they’ve fallen by the wayside for so long.

To add some more salt to the wound, I know how much I would love Mass Effect, I mean I played through the first game twice in order to pick up anything I missed the first time around and perfect my save to be carried over to the sequel. I was even in the process of organizing more runs to nab the Achievements.

But wait, it gets worse. I devour science fiction books. Give me Frank Herbert, Dan Simmons, Peter F. Hamilton and I’ll get lost in their worlds. Feed me more Asimov, Poul Anderson, and Larry Niven. I know that Mass Effect 2 and 3 are even better than the first one, and yet I’ve not played them.

I’m sure there is going to be some sliver of time in my future where I can feasibly squeeze in playing through Mass Effect 2 and 3, but today is not that day.

Borderlands 2 - David Craddock, Long Reads Editor

For all the hours I’ve sunk into action-RPGs, grindy games like MMORPGs, and looters of all shapes and sizes and on all platforms, Borderlands 2 is the one I feel guiltiest about not playing. It seems like the perfect formula for me: a Diablo-style loot system mixed with stylized graphics that never go out of style, frenetic action, and a story good enough to hold my attention if I can be bothered to pay attention to it.

Borderlands 2 has been sitting in my Steam library for an embarrassingly long time. Fortunately, I may get to remedy that this holiday. My stepdad loves the game and has been hinting (very, very strongly) that he’d love to play co-op with me. What better time than the holidays? My mom and stepdad live 30 minutes away.

I can picture the scene now, a tableau straight out of a Thomas Kinkade painting: a cozy house, Mom’s bottomless supply of eggnog and, by most accounts, one of the most satisfying shooter looters available--at least until Gearbox finally announces Borderlands 3.

Fallout: New Vegas - Donovan Erskine, Intern

I’m not the biggest Fallout fan, but I like the games. I’ve yet to fall in love with a Fallout game like I did with Oblivion or Skyrim. Fallout: New Vegas is often touted as the franchise at its best, could this be one to completely win me over? We’ll find out some day. I caught New Vegas on a Steam sale earlier this year for dirt cheap and haven’t launched the game a single time since. The excuse I give myself is that I want to play with mods, and I’m too lazy to learn a safe and quality method to go about doing so. The truth is, the volume of high profile games getting released really cranked up in the second half of this year, pushing Fallout New vegas to the bottom of my gaming priorities. Here’s hoping I’ll finally sit down and jump into it over winter break.

Disagree with our picks? Think we're a bunch of clowns? Let us know in the Chatty below.

Shack Staff stories are a collective effort with multiple staff members contributing. Many of our lists often involve entires from several editors, and our weekly Shack Chat is something we all contribute to as a group. 

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