As you may be aware, July is Shameless Gaming month here at Kotaku. Since there seems to be a dearth of new, interesting releases we're inviting you to join us as we attempt to make our own personal pile of shame a more manageable heap. I will be documenting my progress here, every Tuesday, but think of this as a place to discuss your own progress...
As you might recall the opening weekend of Shameless Gaming, for me personally, was a box office bomb. It had about as much impact Pluto Nash II: The Nashening. It was a weekend littered with irritating pre-arranged social events, episodes of Gossip Girl - and me being stuck at Batman: Arkham Asylum for an hour, tearing my nostril hairs out in abject frustration.
But that was last weekend, because - get this - this weekend was ever so marginally better. I actually got stuff done.
I've heard some criticisms of Shameless Gaming, and they've mostly been fair. 'Gaming shouldn't be a chore' is the valid point most seem to be raising - games go into the pile of shame for a reason according to some folks. Well, let me put it out there - I hear you. On day one of Shameless Gaming month I had a long hard look at my pile of shame and had to resist the urge to vomit bile all over that insidious pile of plastic.
You're right - Shameless Gaming, at first, felt like a chore. And I was dreading it.
But this week it sort of all clicked for me, it all started to make sense. I was playing Bulletstorm - a game that I had played for roughly ten minutes before, quite rightly, abandoning it for Portal 2. 'This is as dumb as an enormous barrel of dumbells,' I said to myself. 'This is complete bollocks, I'd rather be watching Man vs Wild. Or Gossip Girl.'
Still, I pushed myself through, and you know what - I'm almost at the end and I'm having a total blast. Bulletstorm is not a game without its flaws, but hidden underneath the often hilarious, but mostly terrible, dialogue is a game that dares to mess around with the shooter template and offer something quite fresh in its core mechanics. Bulletstorm has slowly turned out to be one of the most fun gaming experiences I've had this year.
If it wasn't for Shameless Gaming month, I honestly would never have even bothered.
As someone who writes about games for living, there's a certain amount of pressure - pressure to be up on the latest games, pressure to have played all the new releases, to be constantly informed. I confess that, at times, I'll go home with a new release I'd usually be frothing weird amounts of foam over only to be overcome with a weird malaise. Hilariously, I find myself procrastinating gaming - I'll do the dishes instead, I'll scroll blandly over Twitter and Facebook, post on forums - I'll do anything other than pick up a controller.
Playing my old, unwashed games has given me a certain freedom from that need to be current, and I think that's been the magic of Shameless Gaming for me so far.
And I can't wait to get started on the next game.
Click here for week one of Shameless Gaming.