...but it's not even Quarter to Three(tm)

Here I sit at 1:45 AM, I’m bored as hell, and I’m beginning to tire of pointless web-surfing. So what do I do then? Go to bed? …but the sun hasn’t come up yet, and I’m hardly tired at all, honest. Nothing a cup of coffee or three, or a litre of caffeinated soft-drink couldn’t fix.

The Morrowind box on my desk beckons.

I’ve pulled Morrowind all-nighters for close to a week now, who can sleep when Tamriel needs to be saved? I go to bed thinking of how to best co-ordinate quests, picking up a few choice alchemical ingredients while delivering a message and coincidentally saving some poor bastard who’s being held captive. Why waste time? No, that’s not right. Why waste time in an inefficient manner? I have a lot of time to waste this summer, and if I’m going to waste it by playing Morrowind until my eyes bleed I’ll damn well do it in the best way possible.

That’s what I’d like to think anyway.

But right now I don’t feel like wasting time. Wasting time gets old far too quickly these days. I’m four days past my 20th birthday and for the second time in my life I’m tired of games. What’s the point?

Enjoyment, or the f-word that Tom dreads, pure and personal, is the point. Nothing more.

But it’s never quite enough. I get pulled into Tamriel as a savior, what I do has a meaning there. But as I get more and more engrossed in the fiction the contrast between Tamriel and my real life gets sharper and sharper. A part of me keeps whispering it’s not like that, its fiction. And it is.

All that work, all that energy put into trying to live out a fiction. It’s fun, but it’s not real, and ultimately pointless. And as I pour more and more hours of my life into fiction my real life seems to fade compared to it. I’d like to think the real world was less important, because in the real world I am not a powerful saviour. But that’s not the way things are. The real world is the important one, the only important one. I am just ordinary, with an all to ordinary life that makes fiction so much more compelling, and ultimately so much more bitter.

It’s late, and right now I’m tired of games. So very, very tired. And it’s not even quarter to three.


(Apologies to Larry Niven)

More seriously, get some sleep. Too much of a good thing is, well, too much. The fun wil return when you regain your perspective.

Perhaps I should again tell the tale of creating a guild by the conglomerate principle of the United States… learning more than any textbook could teach. The power and the pain, in that case.

A man walks on a rocky road and stubs his toe. He curses and focuses on the ground, never noticing the place that he’s walking to.

Integration is coming. I noticed it first when I had fun playing video games on my Atari 2600, pong system, and cousin’s Odyssey. I noticed it more when as a regular social event a group of friends would play Doom on a LAN. And then MUDs and then MMOGs, which I recognized as having the greatest potential of any computer game type to date. And then Ebay sales of characters, with the integration of game money and traditional money.

And then game influence on culture.

As I said a few years ago while playing a Web-based game called Grandslam Baseball, games affect traditional reality just as the other way around. Its a two-way street.

A developer creates a game, which is nothing more than a controlled and understood context. It has far more flexible content than traditional reality, since all it takes to create and change it is a developer. It has far more possibilities than traditional reality, allowing for far more experimentation.

At some point we will no longer hear “Its just a game”.

Have a kid. Then you’ll appreciate gaming time.

My game time hasn’t been cut as drastically as some here predicted it would be, but I’m definitely in no danger of burning out on gaming for the next couple of years now.

Let me get this straight - you’re actually encouraging Koontz to procreate?

No, not Koontz. Kalle. He’s Swedish, so there’s a 49% chance that he’ll increase the number of Swedish women in the world by 1. Then, come 2021, you’ll thank me.

Take a break. You’ll be back eventually, and remember why you enjoyed them to begin with.

This has happened to me already on a couple of different occasions.

Bah. Waste your summer on Morrowind - it’s what I did last year and I grew up strong. Strong as the mighty oak.

I thought it was 51%, even better! She could be just in time for my mid-life crisis!

What are the chances that he’ll increase the number of Swedish twins? Just, er, wondering.

I wasted my summer on Morrowind, too, but I foolishly squadered all my attribute points on Agility, so I grew up not so strong.

Kalle, you just need a nap my friend.

Wow Kalle, my first “maybe I don’t like games anymore and I should write a soulful essay about it” moment was when I was 23 or 24.

You’re way ahead of schedule.

Anyway, don’t worry about it. Just take up another more boring hobby for a while and you’ll be back.

I do have to admit that I don’t play nearly as many games as I used to now that I’m pushing 30 though. That’s at least partly due to time constraints though. I probably play a new game (or replay an old game) once a month or so now.

I only wish I had the time for that. Age 37 and about the only time I get to play now is on long transaltlantic flights or when I am sent on business trips to crap locations and I spend my nights in the hotel with ESPN on the tv and my laptop out.

But I am deep into Morrowind now and still loving it. I have not moved forward the main story line in 6 weeks but I have now completely explored about 30-35% of the main island. I have Bloodmoon and Tribunal installed but have not even touched that content either.

It does seem to have impaired your ability to write site updates, though.

It does seem to have impaired your ability to write site updates, though.[/quote]

I shall return!

It does seem to have impaired your ability to write site updates, though.[/quote]

I shall return![/quote]

No, no, you should have said, “I’ll be back” in a German accent.


Sadly, this is when I usually start playing Free Cell or Spider Solitaire or even Minesweeper. Sometimes I even convince myself that I’m ‘sharpening my mind’ whilst doing it. A loser is me.

Seems like I snapped out of it, an afternoon at the lake and two hours spent sawing firewood made it all better. Now I’m off to run errands for House Redoran until my eyes turn red.

Incidentally, staying up all night playing games most definitely decreases my chances of adding to the population of Swedish women.

Incidentially, I think hanging out with women all the time does the same. Although I’m not really complaining.

It does seem to have impaired your ability to write site updates, though.[/quote]

I shall return![/quote]