Guilty for not playing

From Wired last week:

I want to quit. I need to quit. But I also feel like I should be getting stuff done, even in my entertainment, and if I abandon a game before I’m finished with the story, it’s lost time, a failure. What do I have to show for the hundred hours of my life I’ve already put into this?

Sometimes It’s OK to Give Up – Wired

It’s cute that Wired sometimes just publishes articles like this. Relatable, anecdotal, but still on brand. I don’t know if you’ve played or finished The Breath of The Wild. 120 hours later, I still haven’t finished it. And I haven’t touched it for 2 years. But my reason is completely different.

Sure, I get bored of games easily. Beside a short list of them, most of them never interested me enough for a second visit. But it’s not that I don’t enjoy games that I find interesting. I play Splatoon with my friends every other week. I finished 80 hours of Fire Emblem: Awakening during my summer internship commute. I played more rounds of Age of Empire then I can remember. It’s relaxing, rejuvenating, and I almost never regret it. But yet, I never seem to want to play games when I have free time unless it’s a prearranged social event. And even when I get started by myself, it’s super easy for me to fall out of it.

Friends around me talk about their childhood binges of various Pokemon games. I was allowed to play games on the PC for one hour a day on the weekends. And the never-ending and overly reactive crusade in China against gaming addiction also made me instinctively distance myself from such “bad influences.” Gaming just wasn’t a super big part of my childhood, for cost reasons as well.

I’m not sure if those are the reasons.

BotW is the longest I’ve ever played of any game. It was so good that I actually felt hooked for three days. And interested for a few more months. I liked it so much that I actually kept delaying the main story line. And now I just feel guilty for not playing it. Not because “I don’t feel a sense of accomplishment” or “I’ve already sunk so many hours into it,” but rather, it’s such a beautiful piece of narrative art that it’d be a waste if I didn’t appreciate all of it.

It’s ok to give up, for sure. I think I’ve practically given up on finishing BotW.

But I still feel guilty. And I’m not entirely sure why I just don’t feel like picking up the controller nowadays.

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