For the past couple years I’ve been maintaining a list of games. Games I want to play, games I’m playing, and games I’ve played.

I do this for a couple reasons:

  • To keep track of games that I’ve heard great things about but never played. There was a period during college and a couple years after where I didn’t own any consoles. I missed out on some great titles and I’m still catching up. The Unplayed.

  • To keep track of games that I’ve started (and may have been distracted from finishing). I’m playing more games lately as research and sometimes stumble across a game so good I forget about the game I was playing for pleasure. The Unbeaten.

  • To keep track of games I’ve put down and why. The Beaten and The Abandoned. I’m human, I like specific genres (eg. jRPGs and metroidvanias) and repeating my mistakes (eg. any Dragon Quest game without Rocket Slime in the title).

To date I’ve maintained this list privately. I’m not looking for recommendations for the next game I should play or recognition for the games that I’ve played. Nothing turns me off a game (or show or technology or app) more than an unsolicited, vociferous recommendation. I’m backwards, I accept this.

For a couple years I kept this list in a text file on my hard drive. About a year ago I set up a Tumblr site and kept each category on its own page. Last week I switched to a simple system using PHP includes and Markdown files.

Last night Neven asked if there was a service for games similar to Goodreads. I shared my current solution and offered to zip up the files for him forgetting that our overlapping followers would also see the link and offer. A few of you asked for the files too so here we are.

Unplayed is just a single PHP file that includes a flat, Markdown-formatted file for each category of game (it uses and includes PHP Markdown and PHP SmartyPants by Michel Fortin). Lessn is simple, Unplayed is stupid simple. Like Lessn, Unplayed is offered as is with zero support—take it and make it your own.

Update Four days later Neven offered up some CSS tweaks for iPhone and I added a footer (again, feel free to make it your own). Just diff your index.php with the new one if you made any customizations (I use TextWrangler’s Find Differences for that).

The Initial Prelaunch
Breathing Room Postmortem
Shaun Inman
April 18th, 2011 at 9:42 am