Vote now in Backlog Series 24: Childhood friends

We’re just about finished up with Silent Hill 3 on Backlog and it’s time once again for you to determine the course of fate as we gear up to begin our twenty-fourth game. Silent Hill 3 deals with themes of youth and stolen innocence as Heather learns the secrets of her past. So, why not take a look at some of the things which influenced my own childhood?

All of the games in this series are based around characters I became familiar with in my childhood. That doesn’t mean these are all kid-friendly titles, however. Take a look at the list and cast your vote.

A Boy and His BlobA Boy and His Blob
Developed by WayForward
Released October 13, 2009

I’m a big fan of David Crane’s original A Boy and His Blob: Trouble on Blobolonia conceptually, but the execution of that particular title makes it hard to love. That’s why I was so excited to watch the development of Wayforward’s take on the unlikely paring of metamorphic alien and jellybean-packing tyke. 

It’s one of the cutest games made in recent memory and I had quite a bit of fun in the brief bit of time that I’ve spent playing it. One on the list I’m very much looking forward to enjoying in earnest.

American McGee’s Alice
Developed by Rogue Entertainment
Released October 6, 2000

Of all the classic children’s stories, it’s likely that none are more important to my life than Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Its charms are bountiful enough to entrance the most precocious child and a depth of symbolism able to sustain that enjoyment until such time as one is old enough to share with a new generation. Alice even, in her own weird way, helped me discover the love of my life when I commissioned the woman who would later accept my proposal of marriage to create a series of illustrations for a personal pressing of the book (I never received those illustrations; took her in trade instead).

My experience with American McGee’s Alice is somewhat less significant. I remember being very interested in the title prior to its release and having a single, uninspiring experience when it arrived. It’s very possible that I just wasn’t in the right environment or the proper mood. The re-release of the game included with its sequel has given me a second crack at Wonderland.

Epic Mickey
Disney Epic Mickey
Developed by Junction Point
Released November 30, 2010

There are a few images that you can show to just about anybody on Earth and have them be instantly recognizable. This distinguished list includes the cross, the “golden arches,” and the Coca-Cola logo. Mickey Mouse might be able to give them all a run for their money.

I’m excited to play Epic Mickey, as I’ve played very little and the concept thrills me. Forgotten things are a passion for any true aficionado of an art form and I know that Warren Spector has a tremendous appreciation for animation (in fact, one of the first games Spector developed is a now-seminal tabletop RPG about cartoons). There are faults, I know, but I want to give this a shot.

DK Jungle Beat
Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Developed by Nintendo EAD Tokyo
Released March 14, 2005

Nintendo is nothing if not clever. While the purpose of the Konga Drum accessory for the GameCube was to tap into the developing music/accessory game market with Donkey Konga, they’ve generally been smart enough to produce at least one other game to justify the existence of a peripheral. Donkey Kong Jungle Beat provided that justification in spades and its demo was capable of keeping me at work past the end of my shift more than a few times.

I remember it being exceptionally fun and refreshing, a visually attractive example of a simple two-button platform game. But it also brought out my competitive side and an obsession with perfecting every stage in succession eventually resulted in my failing to even finish at all. But I still have a pair of bongos waiting for the day when I return.

Mystery Game
Mystery Game

Finally, we have the Mystery Game. Don’t make the mistake of choosing this for curiosity’s sake, as people have clamored before to know what it was and groaned when they learned. The intent here is to select the Mystery Game if none of the other games appeal to you, so voting for it just because you want to know what it is is kind of a dick move

If the Mystery Game is not chosen, it’ll roll over into the next series where it will continue to be a mystery.

There you have it. Make your selection in the poll below and make your case in the comments for the game you want to see next on Backlog!

Conrad Zimmerman