Welcome to the sci-fi future year of 2024!
As the Earth turns and calendars are changed out, our thoughts turn inevitably to making some New Year’s resolutions. Surely this could be the year you finish your Steam backlog, clean up your gaming bad habits, or finally fix your terrible posture? All that’s needed is a solid plan and the determination to see it through. And the ability to not forget it all a week into January.
The PCG team is ever-optimistic, so of course we’ve already made some resolutions—read on to see our goals for the year, and chuckle at our hubris. And if you’re setting some for yourself, why not hold yourself properly accountable by letting us know in the comments?
Tackle my backlog
Mollie Taylor, Features Producer
I just bought a Steam Deck, which means I have officially run out of excuses to avoid tackling my ever-growing backlog of games. I don’t expect to clear it—that’ll never happen—but between some light organisation and the power of portability, I’m hoping I can finally start to chip away at those games I always feel like playing but can never be bothered to sit at my desk for. 2024 is for gaming while lying in bed, Steam Deck in the air, forever in danger of dropping the thing right on my face.
Organise my endless screenshots
Harvey Randall, Staff Writer
I take a lot of screenshots. That’s part of my job (those snazzy images don’t just grow on trees, y’know) but it’s also a habit I’ve had for years. I like saving significant gaming moments, but whenever I go to reminisce I feel like I’m diving head-first into a landfill. No more.
2024 Harvey will pin all of his folders to quick access. He’ll rename them (as long as that doesn’t break anything), and delete the bad ones to clear up space. Running the numbers, I’m confident this will buy me at least two months before I snap too many more pics and start drowning again.
Finally finish Baldur’s Gate 3, damn it
(Image credit: Larian Studios)
Robin Valentine, Senior Editor
My goal for 2023 was simply to play more games that came out that year, so I’d be more on the pulse of things and better equipped for the bumfight that is our Game of the Year discussions. I did pretty well on that—but I think this year I want an even more specific goal.
I loved Baldur’s Gate 3 when it came out, and I’ve played a lot of hours of it, but shamefully I never finished it—when Starfield came out, I had to hop over to that for work, and the longer I spent away from BG3, the more it seemed like if I went back, I’d need to start over to benefit from all the patches and improvements it’d received. Not to mention how many people told me I should be playing a Dark Urge character. It all just seemed way too time-consuming, so I put it off for the rest of the year.
No more. On the last day of 2023, I started that new character, and I’m determined in 2024 to stick with them and finally finish what might be the best PC RPG ever, lest it haunt me for the rest of my gaming career.
Stop buying AAA games at launch—wait until they’re fixed
Robert Jones, Print Editor
Despite how awesome 2023 was for PC gaming, with some truly incredible gaming experiences delivered (I’m looking at you, our game of the year, Baldur’s Gate 3) I think it was a new low for PC versions of new AAA games. Far too many released in an absolutely terrible state.
From the big budget flop Forspoken at the start of the year that had PC Gamer’s reviewer Mollie Taylor crying into her keyboard thanks to its performance woes, through the “F**k us PC gamers right?” version of Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, and onto the “Pandora’s box of technical issues” that Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora was for our reviewer, 2023 was a terrible year for many AAA PC games at launch. And that’s not even mentioning numerous other huge games that were deemed release ready despite launching with key options like FOV sliders and ultra-widescreen support missing (cough, Starfield, cough).
It’s not a new thing for games to be released on PC in unfinished states, but until last year there was a limit to what I thought was acceptable, and it usually was only approached by mid-or-low budget titles where roughness around the edges is a little bit more understandable. Something like a Warhammer 40,000: Darktide from Fatshark, for example. But 2023 absolutely steamrollered over that limit, with huge games releasing in terrible states on PC and then taking months to be brought up to scratch (if at all). As such, now more than ever before, I’m going to wait at least three months until after any AAA game’s release date before pulling the trigger on a purchase. This will not only mean I miss the increasingly common tide of bugs and poor performance at launch, but it will also give me more time to play games I already own.
Try a new (to me) game every week
Lauren Morton, Associate Editor
Mollie may be tactically tackling her backlog but I’m not that ambitious. I know that’s never going to happen. Looking back on last year though, it feels like I dumped a lot of time into just a few games while I kept up with the wild release schedule of big RPGs. I caught up on lots of new games from the year in a bit of a whirlwind starting in November and don’t want to give myself that guilt trip this year. So in 2024 I’m going to try something new (to me) every week of the year. It may be a backlog game I’ve sat on for years or something that just launched and deserves my attention. Luckily, Mollie and I report back on what we’ve been playing each week on the Chat Log podcast so I’ve got a little built in accountability.
Find a cosy farming game that doesn’t stress me out
(Image credit: Gameloft)
Christopher Livingston, Senior Editor
I’ve written about how cosy farming life sims inevitably fill me with rage, but I’m determined to find one this year that will actually relax me instead. I love building a little house, tending to crops, and getting to know the locals—I just need to figure out why puttering around in a peaceful world always makes me so irritated. I’m sure there’s a cosy game out there that can actually leave me feeling content, I just need to track it down.
Finally play some classic (and not so classic) RPGs
Phil Savage, UK Editor-in-Chief
I like the idea of RPGs more than I actually play them. Here’s the thing: they’re very long, and there are a lot of them. For all the ones I’ve actually completed, there are 10 more that I’ve never touched. But every so often I’ll pick a random cult classic from the archives—your Anachronoxes, your Shadowrun Dragonfalls, hell, even your Alpha Protocols—and usually have a great time. Even if an RPG isn’t good, it can be interesting.
This year I’m going to be a bit more proactive in sampling the genre. I want to hit a mix of old games I never got around to, and newer stuff that slipped me by. That means everything from Fallout 1 and Arcanum, to Pathfinder and Colony Ship—the new RPG from the makers of Age of Decadence, which I once tried on a whim and had a pretty good time with. Maybe I’ll even play Disco Elysium. I hear it’s pretty good.
Send my multiplayer gaming time… back in time 😎
(Image credit: Epic Games, Digital Extremes)
Wes Fenlon, Senior Editor
Over the holiday break I set up a very cool application on my home server called AMP, which lets me quickly spin up dedicated servers for more than 100 games. The really nice thing about AMP is that it converts all the complex command line stuff you’d normally have to do with a game server into a mouse-friendly interface; it took me only a few clicks to get Unreal Tournament 2004 running and set my match, mutators and map of choice. AMP supports quite a few other old games that I either missed out on in their prime or never played, including Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory and The Ship, with new games being added frequently. Instead of my friends and I hopping on the live service game of the moment and chasing the latest seasonal battle pass, I want to build a habit of booting up something older and just playing, with no skins or XP boosts in sight.