Talking about guilty pleasures is a bit odd, isn’t it? By definition a guilty pleasure is something people don’t want to talk about. They’re the embarrassing little joys in our lives. Closely held secrets that even your closest friends and family members aren’t told about. For guys, guilty pleasures are normally ‘chick flicks’ that we secretly love or ‘girly’ songs we jam out to when no one is around – like Pitch Perfect or songs by Avril Lavigne.
Of course, you have to keep in mind that guilty pleasures are highly subjective. Maybe you don’t have any guilty pleasures because none of your interests embarrasses you, but most of us have at least a couple.
What I want to talk about today are guilty pleasures games, or rather mine in particular.
It takes a lot for me to consider a game a guilty pleasure. I don’t usually let other people’s opinions get to me. When I was in college I had a girl actually try to shame me for playing Disgaea 4 and I laughed in her face. While I could see some people being embarrassed to admit they love the series, personally I think almost all the Disgaea games are fantastic and letting other people’s ignorance keep me from enjoying them would be a travesty.
Honestly that’s the attitude everyone should have about the things they enjoy. If other people are going to look at your as some sort of four-headed weirdo because you like something then fuck ‘em. There are millions of people in the world who either won’t care or have the same exact interest.
Yet I still have a tough time admitting I like playing these two games:
Hyperdimension Neptunia Re;Birth Series
Buying this game was a serious struggle. It looked right up my alley but I also didn’t want it to be caught by my Steam friends list playing something so cutesy and visual-novel adjacent. Conclusions get drawn when a guy plays a game that features anime girls in cock-teasing attire – doubly so if you can actually dress the characters up in the game.
Eventually I broke down, my curiosity outweighing any potential embarrassment, bought the first game in the series and absolutely love it. You’re beaten over the head with the main premise – where various battle girls represent gaming systems in a fight for dominance over the “Gamindustri’ – but you’ll still find yourself laughing throughout the game while enjoying its solid combat system.
It’s a JRPG at the end of the day, which means grinding more than most western gamers care for, but if you like Disgaea then you’ll probably enjoy the Re;Birth series too. The games are also great for anyone with a low performing system and are often heavily discounted during Steam sales.
Agarest: Generations of War
In this game you seduce women in order to knock them up so you can play as your child in future generations. That’s not the whole story, but I’m sure you can see why something with that mechanic might be a little embarrassing for a guy to admit enjoying.
I haven’t beaten Agarest: Generations of War because it’s one of the longest and grind-iest games ever made, but it’s also still a fantastic SRPG. Fans of the Fire Emblem or Final Fantasy Tactics series should at least give this game a shot before writing it off for its dating sim-esque “Soul Breed” system.
Not the Biggest Guilty Pleasures
I know these aren’t the biggest guilty pleasure games out there – it’s not like I admitted to liking Hatoful Boyfriend or the Leisure Suit Larry series (I haven’t even played either to be honest) – but they’re my guilty pleasures nonetheless. Maybe me speaking out about mine will help you come to terms with yours, or at least make someone out there feel a bit more comfortable in their own skin.
Feel free to admit your own guilty pleasure games or pass your judgement in the comments section below. All discourse is welcome as always.