If there’s a gaming Santa Claus, I’d like to think he’d find me more nice than naughty. That I’d get a new Halo in my Xbox disc tray, not a lump of coal. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t some things I could be better at when it comes to video games. There are habits I need to break. This year, I’m going to do my best to be a better gamer. It’s way easier than trying to be a better person.

Finish what I start

When I was a kid, I beat every game I played. Maybe it’s because, scrounging for cash to buy new games, I never had many options. Hard, long, boring – whatever the game, if it went into my Genesis or SNES, I beat it. Last year, I gave up on far too many games.

I love Forza, but I gave it a few spins and moved on to something else. I walked away from Skyrim after about 40 hours. I never finished Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3’s all-too-brief campaign. There are too many distractions out there – far too much to play. In 2012, I’m vowing that if it goes in my X360 or PS3, it’s going to be beaten.

Control my anger

I curse when I play games. I probably missed half the dialogue in Uncharted 3, because I was so busy telling Drake where he could stick his aiming lag. Yes, I throw my controller (always to the side, at a pillow that lies well away from my TV). Yes, I frighten those around me with my sudden spikes of anger.

Superman 64 - Angry Video Game Nerd - Cinemassacre10:37

Superman 64 - Angry Video Game Nerd -

In 2012, I’m going to be a little more Dude in my approach to video games. When a game is frustrating, I’ll just write a very calm letter to the developer explaining my feelings or take a few minutes to meditate rather than continuing to dive headlong into a hopeless boss battle. Yeah, this will totally work.

Try something new

Shooters, RPGs, the occasional action game. That’s my gaming life. There’s nothing wrong with that, but for 2012, I’m making a commitment to broaden my horizons. Yes, it’s time to give an MMO a go. It will start with Star Wars: The Old Republic. And I might just give Runescape a go as well, since I know quite a number of folks who swear by it. The real challenge will be attempting an RTS. Maybe StarCraft II. I’m terrible at managing resources or doing anything quickly, but maybe just clicking on things randomly will work. I’ll call it my “chaos strategy” and drive serious players nuts with my manic choices.

Re-experience my old loves

It’s great that gaming companies are bringing back some old games as HD remakes. There are some I definitely want to play again. There are also a number of games never to be remade that I want to give another go. Jet Set Radio Future is a personal favorite, but I haven’t played it in years. I’m a sucker for the 2008 Prince of Persia that Ubisoft seemingly abandoned. I had enough skill to master Ninja Gaiden Black.

Jet Set Radio Future Trailer01:01

Jet Set Radio Future Trailer

It’s easy to get caught up in what’s new and next, but there has to be time for reliving the games you used to love.

Play nicely with others

I prefer single-player games. It might be because I’m terrible at multiplayer. I get my ass handed to me regularly in Call of Duty or Halo. Co-op, however, might be an area where I could excel. I really haven’t played much co-op in my life. It might have something to do with my disdain for other human beings. I can totes get over that if it means a better gaming experience. Gears of War 3, Halo: Reach, and Borderlands– let’s make some co-op magic in 2012.

What about you?

Okay, so that’s how I plan to be a better gamer in 2012. Do you have any gaming resolutions? That’s why we have a comments section. Get to it!