Here we have some brief run-downs pulled from my curated steam list. Links go to longer reviews that you can use to really get a feel for how I review games: Not with numerical scores and "yes/no" answers, but a sort of rambling discourse on how likely it is that you can actually wind up playing the game while someone is reading over your shoulders. Oh god, she's doing it now. Watching. Watching and judging, silently disapproving.
All reviews are of Steam-versions of the PC version. Did you know I use the same PC to play video games that I use to make this awesome website? It's true!
Alpha Protocol - Alpha Protocol requires your attention, but you have level up screens and a pause button. BONUS: It gives Lindsey Graham nightmares about TERRORISTS.
The Banner Saga - One of the best games to play while your attention is divided. It's a cautious, meditative affair that reminds one of the dance between gaming and life.
Bioshock - All the BioShock games require attention, and are best enjoyed with full sound or headphones, so save them for late, sleepless nights. As if.
Borderlands 2 - PRO: Casually deciding if setting yourself on fire to explode someone is the better or BEST idea. CON: Doing this while console cowboys play Destiny.
Braid - Braid's great if you want to look smart while memorizing basic patterns. Tell your family you're enjoying the story, and it's great practice in patience.
Civ V - The BEST game to play while still managing your duties as a human being. Just go do chores while the CPU takes her turn! Ignore responsibilities!
Defiance - Again - no pause button - but the sound is useless, and you don't have to be THAT keen to play unless you're in a PvP match. Just spend a few bucks!
Deus Ex - It's JUST like being back in back in the year 2000, except that you can't use your knowledge of the future to make any profitable investments.
Deus Ex: Human Revolution - Remember that game you loved as a high school graduate? Yeah, this is a lot like it, but now you're in your 30s and your job sucks and you stare at art.
Dishonored - It's an oddball - you need your headphones and attention, but it's not demanding. Didn't do well with my boss calling me all the time.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - SKYRIM! Made even more epic by pausing a dragon fight for a moment to get shouted at by your family, before you go back to the game to shout at a dragon.
Everquest - If you're tired of the family life, and want to relive the days of being free, single, and chained to a keyboard waiting for a gnome to clear your mind.
Fallout 4: You can finally engage in an epic struggle to find your missing family while you struggle to not engage with your family to play this epic game.
Fallout: New Vegas - You know what's fun? Blackjack. This game understands that. You don't have to listen to the music, especially Johnny Guitar. STFU, Johnny Guitar!
Far Cry 3 - Great. Your wife will wonder why you're playing a murder-simulator and ignoring her, or wonder why you're banging chicks and checking out tits. SIGH.
Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon - Totally fixes the problems of Far Cry 3. Now you can participate in 86% more glee and people watching you won't get bored quite as easily. Plus, neon!
Goat Simulator - It's like Just Cause 2 with less guns, more goats, and I promise you, everyone can know you play this and nobody will make fun of you for it. Talk it up!
Half Life - Plays on a laptop! Throw a copy on your laptop for the next time you're stranded somewhere and would rather be fighting aliens than buying bullshit!
Half Life 2 - Sadly requires your full attention, and some focus as well. Headphones and immersion are a must, but who can afford all that business these days?
Halo: Spartan Assault - Play with a controller from 10 feet away while your wife bugs you to fix the toilet! Remember to buy it cheap and to honestly, finish with those chores.
Jamestown - While you're stuck in a hotel room at a conference, plug your laptop into the TV with an HDMI, grab a controller, and forget about wasting money!
Just Cause 2 - No sound, plenty of pause, hop in, hop out, attach two helicopters together and ramp a motorcycle over it! Or bungee a jeep from a jet! THAT IS ALL.
Mass Effect 2 - Oft considered the best in the series, once you've beaten it 10 times you can spacebar past the cut-scene exposition if your cat keeps meowing at you.
Papers, Please - Wife saw 16-bit quality old soviet woman nudes whilst watching Californiacation. Now I wonder why that happened, and can't stop.
Quake - Another great game to stick on your laptop for those times when you wish you weren't stuck at your in-laws house, but still want some fast FPS action!
Quake 2 - Hey, this one ALSO runs on your laptop! Christmas with the folks will be a LOT easier this year!
Red Faction: Guerrilla - Hey - throw the headphones to the side, grab a controller, and pretend to watch netflix with your family while instead you're blowing shit up on MARS.
RIFT - It's like WOW, but you can still look at yourself in the mirror after playing it. NOTE: Do not succumb to self-reflection. Just play more MMOs.
Risk of Rain - Unfortunately, this game demands your full attention, and being nagged will result in an in-game death. Save for private times.
The Secret World - Instead of a review, I should point out that my character has a twitter account, and I use it while I play, tweeting in character. It's that kind of game.
Shank 1 & 2 - Great! It's got a pause button, and requires FOCUS but not ATTENTION. Play hard, hit pause, go do the dishes, come back, and KILL KILL KILL! It's retro!
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic - Mwrroaw! Grragowoarrroww? Rorrrwuhwuhwuhwahwuhwa! Gnnnrrrrrruuggagauah, gwuwugahnahanha, Zaalbar - Every wookiee that ever played this game. Zaalbar!
Team Fortress 2 - Sure, there's no pause button, but for Pick Up Games, nobody uses voice chat - so you can mindlessly kill in a tactical manner without spending a dime.
Thief - You gotta wear headphones and pay attention, so make sure the laundry is going and get those noise-cancellers on. It's most fun if you like stealing.
Ultima Online - Build a house, fill it with books, get a boat, load it with gold, fish, make fish dinners, take up archery, then realize you should just do all that in real life instead.
Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines - One of the greatest RPGs that unfortunately requires you to listen to things. Subtitles help. Go get the fan patch and play it like it should have been.
Wolfenstein: The New Order - Unstoppable murderous giant robot - we're not so different, you and I. Headphones are unnecessary, attention can be half-assed, it's explosive FUN!
World of Warcraft - Oh god I shouldn't admit to playing this game. It's still fun, though. Obviously, you can't pause, and the other players are horrid shits, but I STILL PLAY.