Monday, 18 April 2011

My Gaming (and Writing) Process

This isn't technically a 'Nintendo Taught Me How To Write' post, mainly because the game in question belongs to XBOX 360. However, I'll include it under a 'guest' post. In the meantime, I'm thinking that I might want to switch the title to 'Video Games Taught Me How To Write'... hmm..


Recently I received a video game in the mail: Fable III. This has more to do with my blogging absence/laxness than I'd like to admit, but I have spent a significant amount of time on it over the last week or so.
But I'm back now, and here's why!
This is my gaming process:

Obsession: For a day or two, my gaming is filled with passionate ardor and a strange inability to go more than 8 hours without turning on the game. There are no flaws, this game is perfection.

Waning Obsession: Okay, there may be flaws, but the game is so awesome it doesn't matter. In the least.

Critical Obsession: By the end of the first week, I still play the game a ton, (unless I beat it because it's a ridiculously short game... *COUGH* Twilight Princess, I'm looking at you.) but I know exactly what's wrong with it, where it could be improved, and what I would absolutely change if I had to.

OH RIGHT, Real Life: After some deep introspection, I discover why I've been feeling a little sick every time I play: guilt. My life, the one I actually have IRL is falling apart. Not that gaming is bad. It just needs moderation.

(Attempted) Abstinence: Okay, I'm not playing the game. At all. Well, at least not till homework's done. And I see my friends. And I clean my room. At least not till then. At least not till three.... and only for an hour!

Moderation: I love the game, I really do. But there must be balance. After awhile of struggling, obsessing, and enormous attempted self-control, I can devote just the right amount of time.

Only then can I get to...

Serious Gaming: Sidequests. Exploring the world. Doing more than the bare-bones of the game. The sense of accomplishment is much more satisfying and lasts longer than the initial frantic passion - although frantic passion has it's place. :) Analyzing what I do and do not like in a calm manner, and adjusting my playing accordingly. This is the stage that separates the good games from the best games.

Since this is technically not a gaming review, I won't go into specifics about what bugged me about Fable III (premise/characterization), what disappointed me (little customization), and what overjoyed me to no end (the rest of the game). Besides, for each story, it's different - right?
Yup. I said story. :)

Writing phases tend to be similar for me. It's only when I get that balance back and get into serious writing that the story starts to take off.
Can you relate? Or is your best writing done in a different phase than 'serious'?



Anonymous said...

I need to stay away from gaming because I know I could get obsessed! I do find my writing becomes serious when I do it daily, which I am working on lately.

L.G.Smith said...

Ha! I don't play many video games, but I get obsessed about other stuff -- like blogs and e-mail!!

Lisa Gail Green said...

Wow! Yes, I think it's about balance. Unfortunately I'm not sure I've found that balance. I still get a bit caught up in the writing. :D

Joanne Brothwell said...

It is for the exact reasons you outlined in this post that I've been avoiding getting back into my WIP. I'm scared I'll get obsessed and ignore my family for weeks on end!