My Return to Gaming For Fun, and How Geometry Wars 2 Has Helped.

 Curse you!
 Curse you!

Part 1: Points, Points, and Points!

Years into the "Next Gen" experience with my 360, I've come to the conclusion (or rather I have quit denying) that my enjoyment of video games in general have withered to a rather pathetic level thanks to my addictions to certain gaming lifestyles brought in by innovations I did not possess when I relied strictly on my Gamecube and original Xbox for my gaming needs. I succumbed to strictly playing games for achievements and then ceasing to writhe any fun or love out of my purchases. Maybe it had to due with the lack of replay value of the games I have played, but I have left many rocks left unturned and many alternative story missions gone uncompleted because of my point-obsessed tendencies.  I accept that this has become a hindrance to my hobby and that this needs to change. More on how this will transfigure into a positive urge in this very post!

Part 2: A Cooperative Catastrophe

 My best friend lives a ways away and we spend a majority of our quality time (that we can spend together, given the distance) playing cooperative games online. As we like working as a team, we usually stay away from any game that lacks this and often coordinate our purchases to be able play and enjoy games together. The only problem is that he is absolutely adamant about the games he wants to play and usually refuses my ideas on trying new things. To be fair, it is his money and he has every right to not want to try anything he isn't sure about, but this limits what we play together in a rather extreme way. This trend has continued since say... Halo 2 was big on the original Live servers, and has now transgressed into a horrible habit of mine. I cannot play first person shooters and the majority of multiplayer games online without a friend, it's just not fun to have to deal with the chaos and the occasional (by that I mean the abundant amount of)  immature fools without a friend in hand. With him being my only real good friend that likes to have a good laugh without being a true dick online, I get very stressed out and lose my fun in most online gaming fairly quick. This has become an extreme issue because this combined with my achievement hunting has sucked the fun out of games for me.

The Solution? More Geometry Wars 2 Fun Please.

I should make it clear that I have not ventured into the world of downloadable gaming on the XBL store like many have. I have infrequently picked and prodded at the many tempting purchases but have prevented myself from making the five to fifteen dollar jump on a game out of fear my purchase would go unloved and untouched. (My Sonic The Hedgehog  purchase would like a word with me about this...) I eventually dived in and found that Geometry Wars 2 has been the answer to my dreams. It's a game that doesn't drag on like RPGs (The few games I do play alone, that end up dragging on a bit for me), allows me to be competitive without being frustrating, and prevents achievements in a fun way that allows me to enjoy the game while doing so. Although I am a little late to this party, I'm thankful it's something that's kicked me back into what I've originally loved about gaming.
Has anyone had a similar experience with falling out of gaming and finding one that can bring you back? Does anyone have any other games like this that they think I'd enjoy without getting too frustrated with it? Anyone want a new friend on Xbox Live in a non-creepy way?