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Gamer Regret

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So most everyone in the world is playing Halo 3 - including many of the people here in Australia, a few literally rushed out the door to go back to playing the game. While I have a few days before I get my controller in hand and have a go at it (at least someone did let me hold the collector's edition today) I thought this article from Wired would help you in case you come down with some gamer's regret. Here's a clip:

In retrospect, maybe I shouldn't have looked.

I was 10 days into playing Dungeon Maker: Hunting Ground -- a little RPG I reviewed here last month -- and I was poking around the "settings" menu. I noticed that it had a "time played" option, which shows you how long you've been toiling away at the game. Curious, I clicked it.

Thirty-six hours.

Upon which my heart sank into a fathomless pit. Thirty-six hours? How in god's name had I managed to spend almost four hours a day inside this game? I should point out that this was not the only game I'd been playing during that time. I'd also been hip-deep in BioShock and Space Giraffe, so I'd been planted like a weed in front of my consoles for hours more.

This is a missing-time experience so vast one would normally require a UFO abduction to achieve it.

So the question of the column, and possibly the question of my eternal soul, is: Is this good thing? How much does it change the architecture of your life to spend that much time playing games?

The dirty secret of gamers is that we wrestle with this dilemma all the time. We're often gripped by what I call "gamer regret" -- a sudden, horrifying sense of emptiness when we muse on all the other things we could have done with our game time.


posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:49 AM |

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At 9/25/2007, Blogger Matthew McNutt said...

lol ... my gamer regret is usually something to the effect of ... so many games I want to play and no time to play them!

Supposedly my copy of Halo 3 will arrive in the mail today. I'm tied up until late tonight ... by then people will have already beat the whole thing! I'll be so behind in gamer points ... :(

At 9/25/2007, Blogger Sean said...

Dude, I lucked out and got my copy around 2PM yesterday. It's a great game. Certainly the best of the Halo games...but probably not the greatest game ever. Of course, it's impossible for it to ever live up to the hype, but it's still a fun ride. I'm not through the campaign yet, so we'll see how the story finishes.

Have a safe trip back to the states.

At 9/25/2007, Blogger Kevin said...

My copy is about a week out. I was a late orderer. As someone with no job, I feel that I have a good eight hours a day to play video games before having said "gamer regret".

When I finally do go back to work, I'm sure I'll be in the same place as Matthew. So many games, so little time.

At 9/25/2007, Blogger matt said...

Heh, I've been playing WoW for more than two years, and it has a time played thing too.. last time I checked, I think it was into the 2 week range. Yikes. But, if I wasn't playing that, I'd be playing something else, so I guess gamer regret isn't really possible for me.


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