Playing video games is not too different from being in love: first we are invaded by uncertainty until we see that we are compatible, then everything is passion, hook and color; and finally things calm down until they become a stable relationship. Most people and video games crash during the first phase or when all the intensity ends.
It happens very recurrently that many video games enter and leave our lives very quickly. The pace of the industry is very frenetic and we don’t usually have all the time we want to be in front of the screen. Some adventures are worth what they are, and it is no criticism to say that.
Despite all this, there are several video games that I always have installed on my PS5 and to which I return almost daily to live experiences that I know for a fact that I like and am passionate about. Mine are The Division 2 and Destiny 2, ironically both pigeonholed as repetitive and boring after beating their campaigns.
A few days ago I was browsing Reddit and came across a post from a player explaining why he doesn’t get bored after 1,000 hours playing Diablo IV, a video game whose main criticism is that it is boring, repetitive, and that there isn’t much to do. And although I could debate some sections, I identify very much with the message it wants to convey.
The only purpose of a video game is entertainment. I don’t watch a TV show that I find boring, I don’t play games that I find boring, and I certainly don’t play for hundreds of hours telling everyone the game is “boring.”
How is it possible for someone to play hundreds and thousands of hours of a video game without getting tired? In my case, +1000 hours for The Division 2 and +700 hours for Destiny 2. And not only have I accumulated them, but I am still actively playing today. I am sure that many others feel the same way, even if they play WoW, Valorant, Fortnite, etc.
I think it’s important to know yourself and know what the hell we’re playing at. Every day I see people jumping into video games that are trending without being completely clear about where they are entering or what they are going to dedicate their free time to.
The comments that best exemplify this are those that point out that The Division 2 and Destiny 2 are bad because you have to repeat the same activities many times to get better equipment. It is true that we must do it, but that does not mean that there is no variety of activities to repeat. Weekly and daily missions, modes, challenges, dungeons and raids, community and seasonal events provide that variety.
My experience and the conversations I have had with other people have made the following clear to me: those who dedicate hundreds and thousands of hours to a video game are fully aware of what they are playing. They know the strengths and weaknesses, they are up to date with new developments and know how to set limits.
Every day, I see many people burned out because they are literally going to waste. They want the best for yesterday and do not accept any other path than the one they have seen in the turning guide, which usually indicates the fastest and takes advantage of specific errors in the game. They abuse the first phases of falling in love and calm down too quickly, so they get bored. Setting goals is okay, but being stubborn almost always leads to frustration.
It’s obvious that the Ubisoft and Bungie releases are very special to me. However, the accumulated hours are the tip of the iceberg, figures that have been growing without me realizing over the years. The fact of the matter is that I know and accept the experience they offer, I knew what I was getting into when I started playing and I return almost daily because I have learned where/how I can enjoy and be happy within their enormous worlds.
In short: everyone is free to experience video games as they want, as long as it does not compromise the enjoyment of others. We can agree that many times we forget that the objective of these is to enjoy and enrich our lives, and not to overshadow it with burdens and disappointments. This is how I have accumulated hundreds and thousands of hours in these video games… even though they say they are repetitive and boring.