I friggin’ ADORE video games. You know it, I know it, it’s no secret whatsoever.
Love being pretty much this mysterious thing that cannot be rationalized, I never bothered trying to analyse the reason I love video games so much. It was an intense coup de foudre, friggin’ love at first play, and it’s been a burning passion ever since. There has been teary, heart-wrenching breakups and reconciliations in the process, and the love is now burning brighter and fiercer than ever before. (For the interested, the full story can be read here and there.)
On the other hand, it’s no problem writing down how playing video games make me feel. I’m not referring to the fact that gaming makes me all giddy and happy, because that’s a no-brainer. We’re dealing with more subtle and complex feelings that can be encompassed by three words: discovery, escapism and freshness.
Discovery: Each and every game is a trip through unknown and uncharted territories. Sure enough, there are tropes and gameplay mechanics that pop up on a regular basis; but the way they are used, and the coating around them, is always unique. A game is always tied to a specific, one-of-a-kind atmosphere, and basking in that atmosphere is something I relish and never get bored of. Cherry on the cake, knowing a given game like the back of my hand doesn’t erase that discovery factor; on the other hand, each replay adds new emotions and atmosphere elements to the mix.
Escapism: I love the real world to pieces, that much is sure; but gosh, do I also love to dive into parallel universes through gaming. Gaming worlds act as breathers: they are welcome diversions that take your mind away from your personal life, only to let you go back to it with a relaxed mind. Some say that gaming sessions are akin to meditation to them, and I fully subscribe to that view of things.
Freshness: Last but not least, gaming act as a refresher. I kid you not: gaming resets the world for me. Every time I start a game and think of my run the next morning, I feel a wave of freshness in my mind, as well as a surge of giddiness; and that sprightliness suffuses the rest of my life, making everything else feel new and sparkly. And just like Discovery, this happens even with games I know already, providing that I haven’t played them for long enough to erase most memories of my last run.
We’re now coming to this post’s title. Not only do I love gaming, not only does it make me feel happy and giddy, but it also gives birth to these deeper and more layered feelings. Mind you, I could probe even further, and expand on even subtler ramifications — such as the fact that my dreams routinely got more complex since I started gaming again, or that gaming has taught me values I use IRL. An activity that generates such a vibrant lattice of delightful emotions, feelings and mental constructions is bound to last, and to take an ever-stronger hold on my life as runs and memories pile up. I rest my case, dear fellow gamers: gaming and I are meant to roll together indeed! See ya soon with more gaming goodness, and take care!