The concept of "Dry July" has been around for many years when it comes to video games.
Thanks to the American holiday season, big video game releases tend to be released either in the lead up to Christmas - from August to December - or in the first half of the year, from January to June. July sits in the middle of everything - it's to early to be thinking about Christmas, but also is the month just after E3 - with all the amazing hype with news of things coming out later, it's easy to not be as excited for something coming out now. If you're hanging out for big blockbuster releases, you're going to be waiting a while.
This does, however, give gamers some time to just chill out. Jump off that hype train for a while, and just chill at the station. In the mean time, a whole world of possibility opens up.
Dry July is a time where you can go through those cases on the shelf and find that game you never actually saw the end off. Maybe you could go through your PC and see just what crazy things you somehow managed to buy during the Steam Summer Sale. There might be that massive RPG you never committed to but really wanted to dig your heels in. Maybe there's a particular game that you hold dear from your childhood that you really would like to play through again. Now is the time.
Of course, everyone loves brand new video games, with bigger worlds, better graphics and crazy story. But with all these crazy new releases, we often end up skipping over games that would be perfect for us. I know most games that I've played and loved were released years before I actually got around to playing them. I almost feel like if no new video games came out for another 2 years, I'd still have plenty to play.
Here's a few games I plan to sink some time into this July.
Pillars of Eternity
I've gotten about halfway through this game and absolutely love it, but with a crazy life schedule mixed in with some sweet Nintendo releases (I'm looking at you Splatoon & Yoshi's Woolly World) Pillars has somehow fallen to the wayside. I spent literally 10 hours one Saturday on this game, prior to E3 - haven't touched it since.
Pillars of Eternity is most definitely not a game you can just pick up and play for 20 minutes - it is a game that demands your attention, and will destroy you if you don't give it. The complex systems built in to this game crossed with a genuinely intriguing and original story put this game right up my alley - I'm definitely going to spend a good chunk of time this month on this game.
Puzzles and Dragons Super Mario Bros Edition
The PnD mobile formula has translated well to the 3DS in this particular novel experience, and I've enjoyed picking up this game from time to time. With the amount of travel I've done and will continue to do this month, it has proved to be a worthy companion. You'll be hearing more from me once I actually finish with this one.
A truly interesting gem of a game that only lasts for a short time, this game pushes the boundaries of the very concept of video game structure. I only started fiddling with the game last night, and ended up still awake at 11pm still getting sucked in to the short videos. If you have a couple of spare bucks and like intriguing murder mysteries, this game is a great little experience to pick up on either PC or iOS.
Far Cry 3
My Xbox 360 hasn't seen much love since the PS4 came along and the Wii U started putting out hit after hit, so I'm feeling a bit nostalgic for it - and Far Cry 3 seems like the perfect game to lose myself in with it. If I actually make it through the other games I want to play this month, Far Cry 3 is where it's at.
Dry July - a time when no video games come out, but the fun only just gets started. What are you planning on playing this month?