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Intrepid Corsair
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re: What keeps you interested in gaming?

This question has been on my mind for a while and I've done some research about it online but I'm still not convinced there is an easy one-size-fits-all answer even though I will postulate on what I think it is in subsequent paragraphs. There have been times in my life when gaming was the only thing I wanted to do during the day. I would eat, sleep and breath games. After a while, the opposite phenomena took over. I had to face the facts that I just wasn't interested in playing games anymore. Going from one extreme to the other left me bewildered. It was kind of like a switch was turned from the on position to the off position. I quit playing and keeping up with the industry preferring other activities. Was it burnout or did I just lose interest in the current selection of games on the market?

Skip forward several years to Star Citizen. Suddenly, I was mentally swept back to my old gaming days when I played Wing Commander and Freelancer. I remembered how much I loved those games and wished an updated version would come out which would expand upon what Chris Roberts built so many years ago. Mr. Roberts offered me this carrot and I started chasing it. Now that I'm fully interested in Star Citizen I find myself branching off into other games with equal alacrity. However, they don't hold my interest for long. Why is that? What is it about gaming that gathers a person's attention, keeps it or bores them to the point of turning off the PC?

With these questions in mind, I started comparing the ebb and flow of my interest to other things in life and noticed some similarities. Sugar. Who doesn't love sugar? It explodes in your mouth and sends a wave of pleasure through your brain. It doesn't matter if it is a candy bar or a cinnamon donut because the reaction is the same. First comes the smell and then the taste. At this point the mind is primed to eat, so pleasure is at its height. But as the belly fills, everything continues to taste more or less the same (if less vivid) while the “mmm” sensation declines, then disappears. Otherwise, we might keep eating till we exploded.

This same principle can be applied to vacations in exotic places. You start with an idea (brochure), you imagine what it will be like, spend money on clothes and tickets and the spend a week in paradise. When its over, you feel like it didn't last long enough but you are still primed for another trip back there or somewhere equally as exciting. However, image if you had millions of dollars and didn't need to work. You might just decide to stay longer in paradise. Unfortunately, you will become less enamored with this location and lose interest over time. This response is very similar to the sugar analogy.

As humans, we respond quickly to new things but lose interest if we are overstimulated to them. Keeping interest alive is as simple as reducing excessive over-stimulation to something we love which, for most of us, is done automatically by the demands of life. Sadly, those of us in America have it so easy that being able to indulge in pleasures is an constant availability. Ease of access is ruining our fun. So what is the answer? Maintaining an adequate pace.

The best movies pace the action sequences in a way that doesn't overstimulate the viewer or bore them with too much unnecessary dialog. Books have the opposite effect. As long as a book isn't boring then we'll keep reading it to the wee hours of the morning. The imagination handles stimulation better while reading than a movie does with visual stimulus. It is almost like using our imagination is the natural preferred method and movies are an unnatural sugar overdose if done improperly. Games are in the same category as movies. It substitutes visual and audio content for what your imagination should be allowed to do. In other words, if you don't pace yourself or, by specific developer design, the game doesn't pace you, you will overdose on it and burn out.

The answer is simple yet so difficult to implement. Game developers race to offer the next big thing to game addicts (compare to sugar addicts). They know that most gamers don't know how to pace themselves so they try to offer some new game or attempt to keep interest in current games by delivering new content at the same pace gamers chew through it. This race isn't an attempt to keep you happy. It is designed to get as much of your money before you burn out because they know burn-out is inevitable.

How do we as gamers or potential game developers circumvent this problem? Simple. Implementing an internal pace for yourself as a gamer will delay or negate burn out. More difficult is the concept of creating a game that balances excitement with equal amounts of intermissions while always promising more excitement to come. Either that or create so much content and elevate the grind/difficulty just to the point where gamers feel it is worth the reward that they keep at it for years.

Pace. Just like running a marathon, a pace will make or break you. Learn to pace yourself and you will always enjoy gaming while others are suffering the effects of burn out.


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Ironmanjb
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re: What keeps you interested in gaming?

Hello I am newer and most do not even know me. I will put my two cents in anyway. :p Gaming is my nothing box. I have a Wife one child of my own I have raised my adopted sister and work a lot with the recovery community.(drug recovery) I also look after my brothers two kids. I am not telling you all this to say look how good I am. There is nothing good in me at all a part from the work of Christ. I am just pointing out that I have a lot on my plate as do most of you I am sure. So after all that I unwind with gaming. Some fish have a hobby of some sort me I game. Gaming helps me not think about guy who ODed that week or the teething child I had help as he did not understand what was happening. I turn on Eve online or LOTRO and nothing I can just play. There was a time in my life where gaming was my life. That is not okay but playing games is fine here and there. I joined up with 3G so I could play with Christians so I could work in some fellowship into my nothing box. So I guess it is not a nothing box then but it is close. (now if I could only get people to talk and not just sit in the same chat room.) Happy Sorry for me keep going on I will stop now.

Thank you all for your time.
Intrepid Corsair
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re: What keeps you interested in gaming?

Ironmanjb wrote:
Hello I am newer and most do not even know me. I will put my two cents in anyway. :p Gaming is my nothing box. I have a Wife one child of my own I have raised my adopted sister and work a lot with the recovery community.(drug recovery) I also look after my brothers two kids. I am not telling you all this to say look how good I am. There is nothing good in me at all a part from the work of Christ. I am just pointing out that I have a lot on my plate as do most of you I am sure. So after all that I unwind with gaming. Some fish have a hobby of some sort me I game. Gaming helps me not think about guy who ODed that week or the teething child I had help as he did not understand what was happening. I turn on Eve online or LOTRO and nothing I can just play. There was a time in my life where gaming was my life. That is not okay but playing games is fine here and there. I joined up with 3G so I could play with Christians so I could work in some fellowship into my nothing box. So I guess it is not a nothing box then but it is close. (now if I could only get people to talk and not just sit in the same chat room.) Happy Sorry for me keep going on I will stop now.

Thank you all for your time.


Thanks for your input. I also game to relax and get rid of the day's troubles. It works well.

I understand how you feel about people being quiet in Teamspeak. You just haven't been around when the chatter sessions are going on. It'll happen. Happy


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re: What keeps you interested in gaming?

When I need an escape to unwind and cannot get out to ride, I game. Game on! Happy


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Megamind: Even the most heartfelt belief can get corroded over time!

Metro Man: Justice is a non-corrosive metal!

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Towne
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re: What keeps you interested in gaming?

I enjoy gaming to unwind, but playing on console I enjoy more for relaxing than pc. I enjoy the pc for playing games with friends. I stopped playing different games because of being burned out or no one to play with. For example I enjoy lotro but dont like playing alone so I dont play. Even games I am burned out on, I will play if there is someone to play with. Then there are games I enjoy but about 1 or 2 of playing I get an ugly feeling inside so I stop playing them like rising storm 2. I enjoy games like mechwarrior where it allows you some customization and it isnt boring after a while lol.

Over all I feel I am loosing interest in games. I dont have the same excitement as I used to for games. They seem all the same but the makes just find different ways to advertise to cause me to believe its different or better. But once I get my hands on it, its the same as everything else before it.


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re: What keeps you interested in gaming?

For me, the reasons I game vary depending upon which game I am currently playing. For games like Red Faction, I play them because I love the amount of destruction you can unleash. For games like Skyrim, I play because of the vastness and how immersive it is. For games like Halo and Call of Duty, I play for the competitiveness. For games like Ark and Minecraft, I play for the creativity. For games like Lotro, I play for the social aspect. But what it truly comes down to most of the time, is as an escape, or a way to unwind after a hard day.
I have found that gaming often times will suck your life away if you let it. God gave games to us for leisure, but just as everything else, if you do it too much it becomes a sin. So, like you said, it comes down to setting a pace and gaming to the glory of God.
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