I feel like I'm done with gaming and it's weird. It's like I'm trying to decide to end a relationship I've been in since I was eight years old, and I'm scared of the hole it's going to leave in my life when I admit to myself that it's over.

I think I already know that it's over, but I'm struggling against my own denial.

80% of my YouTube video recommendations are gaming-related. I've modded Game Boys, and I've hacked a PS Vita inside out, I've swapped joysticks on my Switch. I enjoy the process of tinkering with gaming devices, more than I enjoy playing games at this point.

I really never thought I'd grow out of gaming, but I think that's because I've always seen that as a patronising concept in general. It's not "growing"; I'm not an adult now, and if you're still gaming you're a child. I don't like that attitude in general; it's elitist at best, and elitism is for the insecure.

I think what's happened is I've just changed, but it's arbitrary. When I play games, I'm acutely aware that I'm purely consuming something. There's no creativity. I'm not expanding my mind by playing a game. I'm not getting inspired to make my own game. If I throw myself at something for three hours in Elden Ring, and finally get past it, I haven't done anything other than progress in a video game. That skill isn't transferrable. It hasn't improved my reflexes or ability to read situations under pressure; at least, not in a way that's useful outside playing games. I should just spend three hours reading (if I have to explain why this isn't purely passive consumption then you've probably already wasted the time you've spent getting to this sentence!), or playing guitar (either being creative or learning to be creative), or playing badminton, or committing my confused and meandering internal struggles to parchment.

And I think I'm going to do that from now. I've struggled for the past few weeks with "what shall I do? / I know I'll play a game / what shall I play? / play for 6 minutes / OK I'm over this now / what shall I do? / scroll my Steam library for 10 minutes / go and do something else" and I just need to accept that, at the very least, I need a significant break from gaming to determine whether there's still space for it in my life.


Gadgets Reading gives me tennis elbow