The Short Stack #2: Prime gaming time
Amazon Prime Day is over for another year but the indie games keep on coming
Hello, Shortizens! I hope you’re all managing to stay relatively sane during this turbulent timeline that we’re living in. Every day there’s something new to deal with, which can be pretty exhausting. 😩
Shutting out all that “noise” is more important than ever, especially if you’re constantly plugged into the Internet, like me. While we all have our ways of unwinding – whether that’s going for a long walk, having a relaxing bath, or investing in a good book – video games have always been my preferred method to “get away from it all.” Make sure you do whatever works for you if you feel like everything’s a bit much.
Prime of your life
So, did you pick up anything during Amazon Prime Day? The sales extravaganza has come to a close for another year, however, there are rumors that the online retailer is looking to extend its sales promotion in the future. I hope that’s not the case, as I think it could affect the quality of discounts we currently get. It’s not like we don’t already have Black Friday and Cyber Monday, not to mention any other holiday-specific sales to make up the difference.
Unlike last year’s Prime Day, which I thought was somewhat underwhelming, there were several tempting deals this time around and some fantastic freebies. I picked up the Razer Universal Quick Charging Stand, which I recently added to our best Xbox Series X accessories list, and almost bought a Seagate Storage Expansion Card for my Xbox Series S. The LG C1 OLED 48-inch model was also calling my name, but I couldn’t justify making such a luxury purchase when the price of my preferred brand of butter has more than doubled in the UK. 🙃
If I didn’t already have a PS5 SSD upgrade, I would have picked up the WD Black SN850 during Prime Day. It’s one of the best SSDs for PS5 and dropped well below its lowest-ever price – I think it was less than £100 in the UK at one point. Don’t be fooled by the new SN850 model WD Black released – it’s a waste of money.
Game Pass and chill
In the first edition of The Short Stack, I wrote that I’ve recently been drawn to more independent games like Spirtfarer, which continues to be the case. My usual steady diet of competitive shooters and epic open-world titles still feels too overwhelming and formulaic at the moment.
It’s why I can’t play Horizon Forbidden West for more than a half-hour burst at a time, despite how phenomenal it looks, and the thought of returning to Death Stranding after so many months away makes me want to turn off the lights and curl up into the fetal position. A shame, as it’s one of the best PS5 games available.
I guess I’m resonating with so many indie games because independent developers aren’t afraid to try something new. Indie games also don’t demand 50+ hours of my time to complete, a concept lost on some publishers like Ubisoft, who still haven’t figured out that sometimes less is more. 🙏
In the last few weeks, I’ve made my way through Echo Generation, Dodgeball Academia, and Unpacking, all of which I thoroughly enjoyed. I even snagged every achievement available, which is another thing indie games seem to get right – I don’t want to have to jump through countless hoops or play an arbitrary number of games online.
As a result of avoiding “bigger” titles, I’m slowly recovering from my gaming fatigue. I’ve found myself coming back to Yakuza: Like a Dragon, a game I dropped shortly after launch due to other review commitments.
I’m aware this all might come across as “man discovers indie games are good,” but that fact is worth reiterating. Indie games are good. Not every title will resonate, but I’ve found the majority of games I’ve downloaded are exactly the type of experiences I’ve been craving, even if it wasn’t immediately obvious. Thanks to services like Xbox Game Pass and PlayStation Plus Extra, it’s never been easier to take a chance on a game or genre you’d probably never stumped up the cash for, and I highly recommend it.
Quick Resume on Xbox Series X is also something that has impressed me all over again in recent weeks. Being able to suspend and resume several games at a time is one of my favorite features of Microsoft’s console, and it’s easy to take it for granted. Returning to a game exactly where I left off, even if it’s been weeks or months later, is still magical. The immediacy it offers is unmatched on PS5 and even Switch.
Anyway, let me know if you’ve played any great games that should be on my radar in the comments below or if you picked up any awesome bits of tech during Prime Day.
‘till next time, Shortizens. 👋
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