2021: A Year’s Summary of Gaming Moments

My Notable Gaming Experiences

2021, as I’m sure for many, was a strange year full of twists and turns. Given these twists and turns I was able to delve deeper into some of my backlog and wish list items to have a fantastic year for gaming. This year was also the year I finally got a switch, something I swore to myself I would hold off buying until Shin Megami Tensei V was closer to its release date. That being said I have played a wide range of games this year; from rpgs, action, otome, sand building/world building, and just simply casual gaming; it has been a year of experimentation and discovering things I have put off for way too long. This year I decided to also start my blog as a hobby and simply provide a space that is simply about having fun while playing games. So here we have my first list of some of my top played and most impactful gaming experiences in 2021.

Cyberpunk 2077

Review Pending

Despite the rocky release Cyberpunk 2077 was one of my most played games of 2021. Only one game tops this in terms of the hours I’ve spent thus far on Cyberpunk 2077. While I know this game is still a contentious topic even at the end of 2021 the overall story, side quests, and exploring Night City made me want to replay the game at multiple points in time. Some days I just casually do a few side quests here and there and simply run around Night City enjoying the architecture and the small things I missed during my first playthrough. For me this game is really a defining gaming experience of 2021 and I still continue to play and enjoy it. All I can say is we shall see what 2022 brings for Cyberpunk 2077 and I wish nothing but the best for the game~

Final Fantasy XV

Review Pending

Truth be told I have never had a strong interest in Final Fantasy. I have tried Final Fantasy X and it didn’t really click with me so I’ve never picked up any other Final Fantasy games since then. With the incentive of a sale price and thinking it may be time to give another Final Fantasy game a chance I decided to pick this up on a whim. This was a game I just plowed through from start to finish. For about two weeks this was the only game I played. Near the end I can see why the series is called Final Fantasy because this game certainly had every plot device one could think of. The last thing that made a lasting impression on me was the fact that at first the game gives you a free roaming world and then as the chapters progress you get into a more linear approach that makes you focus on the story at hand. I really enjoyed this method of immersion and story telling that I still think about story telling in this game at the very end of 2021.

The Sims 4

So, somewhat controversial game on this list, but the Sims 4 is something that I binge play and binge on getting custom content and then drop for months. I like to do builds and interior designing in the Sims primarily and this year did see many experimental builds. A bigger Sims moment for me was abandoning the current save file in favor of starting over from scratch. 2021 was the year that I also played around with the expansion pack Snowy Escape and really enjoyed building snowy cafés to more traditional inspired Japanese architecture. I also did get the most recent expansion pack Cottage Living and have enjoyed the new world and making cozy cottages and communal pub areas. In the sims I have so many ongoing projects that this at its core is a staple casual gaming experience for me. Let the building creativity continue~

Planet Zoo

I grew up playing Zoo Tycoon and Rollercoaster Tycoon so it’s really no surprise that when I actually bought Planet Zoo I would be fully immersed in this game. This game is my number one game in terms of the sheer number of hours I have spent playing the game. I have done many sandbox zoos, experimented with different animal exhibits, and how to make the zoos efficient and visually appealing. This is the game that I will most likely buy every new DLC they put out because I love trying to create sanctuaries for all my animals. I have loved the Africa pack, North America pack, and most recently the Europe pack with the various animal offerings. I honestly enjoy the similarities and differences Planet Zoo has in comparison to the original Zoo Tycoon Series. The nostalgia trip has been real but I also just really appreciate all the improvements and the amount of sandbox building you can do in the zoo.

Mafia: Definitive Edition

This is the game I decided to do for my first published review in 2021! As stated in my review this game I bought this at sale price and decided to give it a go. While I did take a hiatus in between plays (🤣the allure of Zoo Tycoon probably🤣) this game was really a fun game to play and it made me nostalgic for when games were much more contained story wise. I liked that I didn’t have to spend eons getting to a good story portion but was still able to do marginal exploration in the world. This game was enjoyable and I’m glad I got to play such a quality game in 2021.

Animal Crossing and Happy Home Paradise DLC

I am an Animal Crossing fan and have waited over a year to finally play it. It was almost luck that I started it only a few months before the new DLC pack came out. I loved the 3DS’s Happy Home Designer and honestly near the end I played that game more than actual Animal Crossing itself. I decided to give myself a challenge and not play in English and practice my German skills (maybe 2022 will be Japanese??). This has been an interesting experience to say the least and I have enjoyed my Animal Crossing nostalgia and designing various animal’s vacation homes with the new and improved objects and building tools. The Happy Home Paradise has now taken more of my attention and it is a fun to just be able to casually decorate various dream homes.

Otome Catch-up

Collar x Malice Review Pending

With my postponement of me acquiring a switch there has been a very long list of Otome backlog. I have always liked dabbling in otome, I guess a somewhat guilty pleasure of mine. When I saw some of the descriptions of the new(ish) releases I was very intrigued. Particularly by Olympia Soirée and Piofiore: Fated Memories. I also took the opportunity to play some of the older games I never got to such ad Collar x Malice and Code: Realize ~Guardians of Rebirth~. Needless to say, I have enjoyed my otome sessions and definitely got the feeling I have really missed out the past few years and cannot wait to experience more otome in 2022! 😍

Dorfromantik

Dorfromantik is a casual indie game I picked up that deals with building a word full of hexagon tiles. This game is quite relaxing for when you just want a simple puzzle game that you can go at your own pace and be content with a mere 30 min session. Throughout the year the developers have added more to the game and it’s been fun to see the growth of the fun puzzle game!

Shin Megami Tensei V

Review Will Come Once I finish the Game~

As stated in the beginning of this blog, this game was the reason why I finally got my switch. My first introduction to the Shin Megami Tensei series was Shin Megami Tensei IV. I have dabbled in the remaster of Shin Megami Tensei III but haven’t finished it yet. I have not completed the entirety of Shin Megami Tensei V yet, due to the heavy grinding nature of the game and me being angry at an irritable death and having to start an entire section over 😈 😭 😱 Honesty, the Shin Megami Tensei series knows their fans and what they want from the series and so far Shin Megami Tensei V is a perfect balance of what both the third and fourth installments offered. This game so far has not disappointed me and I’m excited to finish it in 2022!

Here’s to 2022! Wishing anyone who reads this a Happy New Year!

Sincerely, Quail