Steam Challenge: Culling Time


Let’s face it. Many of us have ended up with games in our Steam backlog that we’re just never going to play in any serious way. When we go to pick out a game to install, our eyes just brush past this title, not even considering it. We may not even remember where it came from – likely part of some random bundle somewhere.

I have several of these — I feel a little bad about it because I know someone put love and time and money into developing them. They’re probably not bad games, but they are just not for me.

I’ve found that, in particular, platforming and shooter games fall into this category. There was a time and place where Mario was my gaming life, back in the NES era. But as I’ve gotten older, my hand-eye coordination isn’t what it used to be. I’ve learned that casual platformers are okay, but anything beyond that becomes frustrating and just not worth my effort anymore. I’ve never been into FPSs… though I have some exceptions, such as with survival games like 7D2D (though I still mostly melee in that).

So, these games sit on my Steam list, forever unplayed, and heavily skew my Steam calculator results. This weekend, I decided that was enough of that, and decided to start culling the list of games I’m just probably never going to put real time towards. I did this by installing the game, playing enough of it to count towards a playtime, then uninstalling. In my defense, I played each game to the point where it either got frustrating or tedious to me in some way.

Here’s what I got. If you’re interested in any of them, click their image to go to their Steam page.


Godus Wars

Earlier this year, the devs working on Godus decided that rather than add battle into their original game, they were going to split their game into two games and sell them separately. This seems to be a trend lately. All this did was add another separate title to my backlog, darnit!

I already talked about how I felt about Godus, and I haven’t actually tried playing the original just yet. So, chances are, playing the battle version was not going to be my cup of tea.


This one was a little clunky. I’m not sure why the game had to open two windows to run one game, for example.

It wasn’t terrible. The aesthetics were nice, and the sculpting aspect (which I knew I’d like) was also nice. But I’d rather be spending my time on a more polished strategy game.


Hell Yeah!

I… don’t even know where this came from. Probably a bundle somewhere. You play as the snarky rabbit prince of Hell… and things just keep getting quirkier and more colorful from there. It’s about as strange as it gets with a bit of puzzling, a bit of platforming, and a lot of unorthodox, disrespectful humor.


This game… is actually pretty fun. It takes nothing seriously, and it managed to get me to play all the way to the point where I beat the first boss to complete stage one. This is going to be weird, but I’m actually going to recommend you try it out if you find it on your Steam list and you have a taste for something different to play some weekend.


Alan Wake’s American Nightmare

Alan Wake makes me cry. It’s such a neat story (about a writer), but the game’s mechanics are just too annoying and difficult for me. Long before I stared this blog, I actually beat the first Alan Wake, which I chronicled on my Tumblr. But I couldn’t have done it without cheats that gave me unlimited life and ammo, and that’s what makes me sad.


The story fascinates me, and I love that it really does seem to refer back to the original game often. But about the third fight in, the game decimated me, reminding me why I played the previous game with mods. This game is just not going to happen, no matter how much I’d like to see the story. Maybe I’ll watch it on YouTube one day.


Super Meat Boy

Yes, I knew what I was getting into before I fired up this game. Any game that describes itself as an “infamous, tough-as-nails platformer” is not for me. I played until I hit a stage where I died more than 10 times… then I gave it a rest. That took me all of 7 minutes. 🙂


If you love tough platformers, this game is right on spot. With a controller, it played fluidly and responded well. I like the mechanics, I just don’t have the patience and time to hit my head against a wall because I can’t make pixel perfect jumps.

The One That Redeemed Iteslf


I actually put some time into this game a few years back. But I must have been playing offline, because Steam didn’t pick it up. Like the other games I was attempting to cull yesterday, I loaded this up to play a few rounds just to get some time on it before I uninstalled.

Only… that didn’t happen.

This game has been vastly improved since my first attempt to play it (when it was likely in early access). I still died over and over and over, but this time, I was able to start unlocking new classes new gear and slowly make it further and further into the game. This turned into one of those “Just one more generation” things, and before I knew it, I put 2.4 hours on the game yesterday afternoon.

I have plans to revisit it. Too addicting!

This is not the end of my culling list by far. I’ve set up a Steam category and started moving the games I mean to cull into it. I hope to get a little time each night to knock one or two off my list so that I can get my backlog looking a little more manageable. I’m also refraining from picking up and activating any Steam bundles in the future. 🙂

Do you have any games you’d consider to be “culling” games on your Steam list? What do you do with those? 


  1. I actually had a lot of fun with Rogue Legacy! I tend to not be much into platforming either, but the generational aspect kept me interested for some reason (Also, half-dragons).

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