Dear Future Self,
If you are reading this then you’re probably considering rejoining the MMO-verse and losing yourself in its endless realms of possibility and wonder; the characters to create, battles to win and adventures to share through the global magic of the internet.
Don’t do it!
Just as a timely reminder, here are some of the reasons you just quit Destiny after 18 months of rollercoaster commitment, and haven’t returned to Utopia after all the on-again-off-again years together.
- Real-time games in which there is always something you could be doing will compromise your real-world existence. Remember the Destiny hamster wheel of striving for max light? Endgame grinds are not as fun or satisfying as you think when you’ve seen all there is to see and done most of what there is to do. You will sacrifice your mental or physical health to rank/level up, to play when your teammates are playing or to earn loot that sounds great but will just end up sitting in your collection. Trust me and look instead for some other game that can be played to its full potential entirely on your terms.
- There are many exciting games that you haven’t played yet and that you won’t get to while you’re devoting any free time (and some that isn’t free because you don’t have the self control not to) to an endless MMO.
- There are exciting and ultimately more rewarding experiences to be had outside of the game such as parenting with positivity, creativity and energy, all of which suffer at the hands of sleep deprivation.
- On the topic of sleep deprivation, playing games that keep you up kind of late, rely on twitch reflexes or create noticeable mental and physical tension are a bad idea before trying to sleep. Yes, you manage to go to sleep easily some of the time. That isn’t always the case though and your real-world existence suffers when it doesn’t work. And when you find yourself calculating that you could still get seven hours’ sleep if you log off and fall asleep in the next three and a half minutes, its all too late. Just don’t go there.
Remember, gaming is one enjoyable part of a diverse life but if everything isn’t in its rightful place and thoughtfully balanced the whole thing starts to sink.
PS: If you’re subconsciously undermining all of this because you just really want to play an MMO again, go and spend half an hour gaming with your siblings in person and be reminded of what fun gaming really feels like…