Peaception: The 5 Stages Of Gamer Depression
Every year I make a list of games I’m going to buy so I can start preordering them beforehand. Out of that special list there are usually one or two games that stand out and consume most of my time. Recently that game was The Last of Us and with the end of every good game you run the risk of suffering a state of limbo when you don’t know what to do with yourself.
You convince your friends to buy the game:
It’s like I’m running a marketing campaign for the developers. If a friend of mine has the misfortune of not owning a favourite game of mine I resort to scare tactics. My scare tactics usually include emotional blackmail, threats and if I’m really dealing with a stubborn individual I just buy them the game. There is always that joy you get when your friends are playing the same game as you. You get to talk about your favourite moments, debate the not so good parts, and well, gloat when you complete a difficult stage in record time (and no, not in easy mode). It’s like reliving the game through your friends and it is just as satisfying as playing the game.
Try to relive the experience by replaying the game:
If I really enjoy the game I tend to try and replay it immediately after because I tend to struggle with the concept of letting go. It’s enjoyable for the first few minutes but then the sense of surprise is gone because now I’m familiar with the story and the cut-scenes. As I continue playing then I sadly realise that some of the magic is gone and I stop playing the game. There is an exception thought to this rule and that’s when I play a BioWare RPG like the likes of Dragon Age since you got different origin stories to play as either male or female, good times indeed but not so good when you play story driven action adventure games.
A lot of things remind you of the game:
After playing Last of Us it was ridiculous the amount of things I would see that would remind me of it. I would be watching the first episode of Revolution and think, “Oh wow this reminds me so much of The Last Us minus the infected bit.” The process would repeat when I hear a song and think it would be perfect for the soundtrack. With any good memory you feel the need to share it even with people who don’t get it and you get accustomed to the blank stares you get when you reference something they have no idea about. This stage doesn’t last that long but when you are experiencing it, it might seem like the universe is going out of its way to remind you of your favourite game.
You try to play similar games:
This stage is when you really get desperate; well in my case it is. I go on a hunt to try and find games that are similar to the one I played. The problem with this approach is even though games borrow elements from each other, when it comes to games like The Last of Us or Heavy Rain these are rare gems and you wouldn’t want a game similar to that because it would be a poor replacement for the real thing.
You finally accept the magic is gone:
Reality is a mother trucker because when it finally sinks in that you have completed a really awesome game and there is no worthy replacement for it, it’s a sad day indeed. What’s even sadder is when you look at the gaming release calendar and realise the next game you want to play is a few good months away, this fact alone would leave me even more depressed. At times when I get like that I start thinking of activities I would do to help pass this sad time like:
- Stamp collecting, only thing is I would be too lazy to go on a stamp buying binge.
- Learn to play a musical instrument, but then again that would require me to actually think about other interests, but then, ever since I watched Deliverance I’ve always wanted to play the banjo.
- Start taking more walks and becoming one with nature, but wait, I’ve got Discovery to do that for me and in HD.
- Attend ballroom classes, maybe learn the tango or the foxtrot, but seriously, when would you use those moves unless if you belong to the Titanic fan appreciation group and you dress up to recreate the ballroom scene in the movie.
- Learn to garden and cultivate your green fingers, but if I can buy it from the food lovers market there is no need for me to grow it, ain’t nobody got time to weed.
- Redecorate your living space try to bring some ying to balance out that yang, but after watching Extreme Home Makeover such things require commitment and extra willing hands, plus a camera crew.
- Go on a crime spree by robbing from the rich and giving to the needy and the needy being you of course. I joke, I do not encourage any form of criminal activity without adult supervision because it seems anything is acceptable as long as there is an adult to supervise.
- Go on an impromptu road trip with friends until you take a wrong turn and you get a flat tyre and you have to watch while cannibals make a stir-fry out of your best friend Pete, it’s safer at home people.
- Train your mind and body to prepare you for the Monopoly World Championships. I’m not making this up there is an actual monopoly tournament and my mind is blown by this fact. In a world where there is a toilet seat throwing competition this should not surprise me at all.
- Be patient and wait for the next game.
I really would like to learn to play the banjo and serenade someone with it or better yet release a banjo cover of all the romantic hits just to help my fellow humans in spicing up their love lives. That’s why we need more good games to stop us from undertaking hair brained ideas but until then I shall deal with my depression by learning to be patient until the next game release and learning the banjo of course.