It's 10 pm. Do you know where you and your loved ones are? Here is a collection of experiences from those who live / have lived with an obsessive MMOG gamer and from those who have lived the experience of obsessive MMOG gaming.

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

"I used to play Everquest to an obsessive extent. Not to the extent that I would skip work or sleep (actually, that's not 100%, for a while I would stay up until 4-5 am to participate in raids, only to find myself having to go to work at 9 am), but enough to isolate myself from my surroundings and the people I was close to. My ex was playing it, and I joined him out of curiousity and because I wanted to have a common hobby with him. The funny thing is that we ended up not playing together and not in the same guilds anyways - he helped me initially with items and levels but preferred playing with his group of friends who were all higher level than me. I was working on a project in another city at that time as well, so my weekly activities typically were as follows:

Monday - thursday: work in the other city (where I had no access to the game). Arriving back home on thursday night, where I would go to bed or sometimes even log in right away. Friday, saturday and sunday I was nonstop on the game alongside my ex, interrupted in between by obligatory family visits or seeing what was in the fridge.

When my project finished, I came back, and the playing increased even more so - logging in as soon as we went through the housedoor, playing on friday nights until 2 in the morning, then going to bed, waking up at 9 am and going right back in. Basic household chores got done occasionally but mostly during downtimes in the game (medding up, sitting waiting for a raid). Oddly enough I was the one doing more of the housework even while both of us were playing Everquest.

This continued on for a couple of years, and at some time I realized that I had absolutely nothing in common with the person playing next to me. We separated and I made the mistake of falling for another Everquest player. After a long-distance courtship that lasted about a year, he moved into my place while trying to find a job. Of course, even though he was looking for a job (which he only did sporadically; what he did everyday while I was working I have no clue), I ended up working full-time, cooking and keeping the place clean - and paying for his stay here other than his groceries and drinks. If he actually cooked (rarely) he acted as if he had done me a HUGE favour. There were some other very serious issues with him including alcoholism, verbal / emotional abuse and lots and lots of lies, but almost needless to say, I think I have learned my lesson about dating online and looking out for specific red flags.

I have stopped playing Everquest - the time required to put into this game to be somewhat 'successful' was too costly for me. I did not want to miss out on activities anymore, I wanted to meet with friends, I wanted to not feel bad about my figure and my health, and most of all, I wanted to do things I've never tried before. I doubt I will ever spent that much time playing in front of the computer again - it is a time-wasting activity that can be entertaining for a short while, but there are no long-term benefits. No personal growth, no accomplishments that you can look back on fondly, no advancement of any sort applicable to real life. Or at least nothing that cannot be accomplished in real life, with real people. Without ruining my own health or well-being.

I think some people learn over time, some people never will never wisen up. The only advice I have for people who find themselves in these situations is to trust your gut - don't give up hope in yourself and don't believe anyone trying to make you believe that you are supposed to be carrying their load."

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home