I definitely get what you’re saying — we’re about the same age and are both lifelong gamers. I think you might just be burned out on the AAA games because yes, those tend to be more formulaic than not. My gut feeling is that they tend to be much more homogeneous than games from smaller studios, due to the sheer number of people working on them.

I’ve personally found my niche recently to be heavily story-driven games with less of a balance on mechanic (Undertale and Night in the Woods both hit me right in the feels.) And for when I want to be challenged mechanically, there’s always Overwatch competitive..

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