One of my deepest regrets during my Saturn hey-day was I never recorded my purchases. From January 2001 to August '05, I acquired 360 different Saturn games, spanning the US, Japanese and PAL spectrum. I loved my Saturn to death. Toward the end of my honey moon with it, so to speak, I regretted not having a log of my experience -- my game acquiring, as well as my game playing. Sure, I remembered the finer details of a few...
But I have no accurate recollection of when I bought, say, Grid Runner. Or Willy Wombat. And I'm upset I did not document that history. As a result, it is lost forever
We used to have this topic called "Saturn Collection!" It was where I met my Saturn buds. We were a small but dedicated group. I posted my 330 titles. When GAR3 posted his, he had specifics attached, like how much he spent, where it was bought, etc. It hit me then and there what an awesome idea it was. I replied, "Man, I wish I logged it like you did." He replied, "Trust me, you DO NOT want to know how much you wasted!"
However, I did wanted to know. It upset me greatly that I had lost four great gaming years
Of course, this logging business will only interest specific types of gamers. I'm the type who obviously loves that historical value, I love archiving, I love that "Behind the Game" kind of deal. There are lots of gamers who don't care. That's all good. BUT if you do like the idea of a catalog, I *HIGHLY* recommended you keep one
I was fortunate then, since I was beginning my SNES resurrection in mid January 2006, I had the wherewithall this time around to start and maintain a log. I knew one day, say, a year or 2 from now, it'll be a blast to look back and see what I bought when, from whom, how much, etc.
It doesn't eat up much time. You can keep it basic or turn it into a log/journal. But the key is to:
If you fall behind, forget about it. I know, because it happened to me with my NES/Genesis logs. Keep in mind that logging is most ideal if you're just starting off with a new system. It's kind of useless if you missed out the first year or two of a system, then start one today. (Then again, better late than never, right?). So in that regard, I was very lucky to have started my SNES journey knowing what I knew... a chance for redemption
My log has to be... sheesh, at least 60, 70 pages thick!
It only takes a minute, and once you write it down, you'll have it on record for life. I also include any interesting side-stories related to the purchase. I keep a list of what I buy, and there's a separate list for order of games bought as well. Sometimes, for the heck of it, mini journal entries were written, so in 2011 I can look back and go, "Whoa, so that's what I was up to then..." or "Wow, on this day five years ago I bought Pieces for $4.99 off eBay with a 2 second snipe"
I so wish I did this with Saturn, live and learn eh!
I've looked back a bit and some of the stories I've already forgotten, but thanks to writing it down when it happened, it's there on record forever
MORE LOGGING MADNESS
If it was an eBay win, I listed the maximum bid, in addition to what I won it for
Look at my craziness!
I started buying SNES games January 17, 2006 and by late February, I was nearing 200?!?!
By the way, YES that's February 2006, the SAME year (i.e. about 40 days it took for me to acquire nearly 200 titles!)
Oh jeez =p
So this is the list of what I bought, in the order I bought it. See, if I didn't record it, all these little facts and stories... would be gone completely
It really does pay to just keep a record
KEEPING A GAMING JOURNAL
In addition to keeping a gaming log, I also keep a gaming journal. Several, in fact. I keep a journal by my game stand and stop to record game thoughts, impressions etc. after a level is defeated, or in the case of RPGs, after a playing session has concluded. I have four journals filled with SNES goodness:
For my SNES resurrection in January 2006, I knew better this time around to not just log my game acquisitions, but also my game playing experiences, as I always intended to create one big SNES topic where I could document my SNES journey. I knew a game playing experience journal would come in handy for the message board topic, but of course, I ended up with my own site and now can really see how helpful these journals are!
My first journal entry:
Since most SNES games have passwords, it was natural for me to write them down somewhere. A journal made even more sense. I thought, "Why write down only the passwords? Why not chronicle my game thoughts as well?"
I always list the date and time I play a game. At least the 1st time. Notice in my Super Metroid review I mentioned how I played and beat it from 2.3.07 to 2.10.07; one Saturday to the next. It's all thanks to my game play documenting journal!
I've got 11 (ELEVEN!!!) full pages on my 48 level game playing experience with B.O.B.
Also, I rate the games in my journal, which makes my review process on this site easier
The gameplay? Not just mentally noted, but actually written down:
Same to the overall score:
If you look through my B.O.B. review you'll see very similar comments. I played this game way back in June 2006, stopped, then picked it up again and beat it in late July '06. I wrote the review March '07. If it weren't for my journals, a lot of the details would be foggy!
KEEPING A JOURNAL HELPS YOU FINISH VIDEO GAMES?
It's true! For me, at least, and bound to be, for many others
I find keeping a gaming journal has other benefits. Namely, somehow, it inspires me to stick with a game until I can beat it. It annoys me to see empty space of pages between one game and the next. These days, I don't like game-jumping until I beat the game I've started. I feel you cannot accurately judge a game until you've beaten it. The best reviews, in my book, are the ones where the player went through the game entirely
Journals are a GREAT way to help you stick with a game. In my Saturn heyday I rarely beat my games. I was content playing for 30 minutes and moving on. With SNES, I've done a complete 180. The journal is a big reason why, I think
They just give you an extra reason to strive for. When you start writing down game thoughts, you even "connect" with the game more, crazy as that may sound. At least I did
A journal is also a great place to write down move commands:
Remember my Battle Cross piece? The ratings were recorded in the journal first, then translated to the web:
You probably have noticed in my reviews I have dates of when the game was purchased, for how much and such. It's all courtesy of my gaming log. I first created the log with the intention of my sole interest -- as I never planned to have a site. I did, however, wanted to eventually create a SNES topic that I would post at various message boards, where I could document my personal Super NES experience and include these little details in each posted review, but that pet project never got off the ground. Then in the summer time (2006) I decided to lay off that SNES topic, and instead focused on my Obscure SFC impressions. Once I created this site I realized even how much better the idea of keeping a log was. And bottom line, it's just fun to reread all the old stories of how I acquired each game. It somehow makes it all that more fun, and gives each SNES game a history, so to speak. It was indeed a slice of video game redemption ^_^
The journal is real handy too, for not just password note-taking, but actual gameplay thoughts and even ratings, so if I choose so, I don't have to review a game IMMEDIATELY after I've played it extensively. Without the journal though, a review just wouldn't be as accurate if you waited some eight months to write it
I really wish I kept a log and journal of my Saturn days but am glad I learned from past mistakes and have rectified it with the SNES
Once again I highly recommend keeping a gaming log, as well as a gaming journal, regardless of whether you own a site or not, whether you can share it with the world, or solely for your eyes only, as it's a great thing to have down the road if you are someone into archiving and such. Trust me.... have I ever led you astray?