How Do You Game in 2022?

My pro­gres­sion into gam­ing was pret­ty straight­for­ward. I start­ed with a VIC 20, fol­lowed by a Com­modore 64, then an Apple IIGS, got a SEGA Gen­e­sis for Christ­mas junior year, then off to col­lege with a Hewlett Packard Pavil­lion. My PlaySta­tion 1 got me through grad school and a PS2 got me through years of under­em­ploy­ment. I dropped my Sony loy­al­ty, get­ting an Xbox 360 when we bought our first house. I upgrad­ed to a Forza Xbox One when I went to Ford. We added a PlaySta­tion 4 Pro a few Christ­mases ago, then to an Xbox Series X last spring. My youngest got a Nin­ten­do Switch some­where along the way, too. This Christ­mas we added a PlaySta­tion 5 and an Ocu­lus Quest 2.

It’s at once embar­rass­ing and over­whelm­ing to try to man­age four gam­ing sys­tems simul­ta­ne­ous­ly and eval­u­ate which games make sense for which plat­form. I’ve tried to sim­pli­fy things with Xbox Game Pass Ulti­mate as part of the Series X pur­chase. That’s been help­ful from a dis­cov­ery and every day play stand­point for count­less titles that would­n’t have been worth $60 or more to prove disappointing. 

Where things get trick­i­er is know­ing which Switch titles are actu­al­ly good for a 2nd grad­er. He’s a good read­er, but some of the games ask a lot of the play­er. Addi­tion­al­ly, try­ing to stay on top of PlaySta­tion exclu­sives may be a chal­lenge. I’ve his­tor­i­cal­ly been an EA devo­tee, so sto­ry-ori­ent­ed games are a bit of a blind spot for me. I’ve pur­chased so many games I nev­er had a hope of fin­ish­ing once we had kids. I did­n’t do a great job man­ag­ing across plat­forms on the last gen con­soles we had pri­mar­i­ly because friends had PlaySta­tion and the prospect of play­ing togeth­er online in the pan­dem­ic was attrac­tive. It has hap­pened maybe a hand­ful of times.

Final­ly, Ocu­lus Quest 2 is new ter­ri­to­ry alto­geth­er. I’ve been gen­er­al­ly bear­ish on VR with the excep­tion of some indus­tri­al appli­ca­tions. What I’ve seen in the last week are some pret­ty sim­ple games that are fine, if not espe­cial­ly immer­sive and fun. Look­ing at this list from the Verge, it looks like there are few com­pelling options for a sports-for­ward kid.

What’s com­ing in 2022 that’s worth look­ing out for?

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