Of all the bad habits I have in gaming, this one is definitely the
most wide spread. It’s odd, because in real life I’m not very tied to
material objects. I collected comics and comic cards as a kid, but it
wasn’t sustained in to adulthood. The only thing I really have a lot
of is video games and consoles, and even that isn’t a substantial
collection. It’s probably small enough to fit in to a duffle bag.
When it comes to playing video games, however, it’s a completely
different story. I didn’t realize I had a problem until I played
Skyrim. One day I was cleaning out the inventory in my Whiterun home,
and all of the sudden it hit me: I have over 800 cabbages in
my cupboard. I sat there for a brief moment as that fact sunk
in, and I only had one thought… “What in sake am I
going to do with 800 cabbages?”
Of course that was just the beginning. My eyes had been opened,
and I began to notice that I’ve hoarded all sorts of stuff in other
games. Specialty ammunition in my favorite shooters. Piles
of money/resources in just about every game I’ve played. So
many pilot lights in Fallout 3… I’ve since gotten
better about this, but it’s actually taken some work. I re-trained
myself to be more discerning, and to remember that just because a
rusty can exists as an item in this game doesn’t mean I need to pick
it up. Learn from my mistakes, folks. Don’t burden your inventories
with items you’ll never use, and don’t save all your resources for a
crazy last stand that probably won’t come. Go all out, and enjoy the
game to it’s fullest!
2) Never Looking Up.
One of the best things about gaming is that feeling you get when
you come across something that is out-of-this-world beautiful. A
great example is in Halo when you first land on the ring and see it
stretch off in to the background and all the way up over your head.
Or that first sunrise that you catch as you’re galloping across the
wild west in Red Dead Redemption. Or the sheer scope of
fighting Poseidon in God of War 3. These are beautiful
things that are hand crafted by developers with love, in hopes that
gamers will see them and lose themselves in the pure beauty and
3) Rushing In.
When I play co-op, I tend to play more like… well, an
Instead of using the 2nd person to our advantage and
playing like a competent adult, I tend to do something that’s
significantly less helpful and more likely to get us killed: I charge
in head on. Ok, I don’t do this ALL the time, but enough that I’ve
noticed it’s a pattern. Anyone who has played most FPS games on the
hardest difficulty knows that’s a pretty quick way to get yourself
killed, yet I find it very hard to stop myself. As my teammate hangs
back and smartly whittles down the enemies ranks, I’m over
here shouting some war cry straight out of Lord of the Rings as I try
to punch everything to death. But honestly, what’s a guy supposed to
do when the beacons are lit and the red dawn approaches? Sigh… I’m
not proud of it, but I gotta own up to it. I’m lucky I have patient
friends. Here’s to all the teammates who died while I was in
spectator mode. *pours a little on the sidewalk*
4) Constantly Reloading.
Imagine this if you will. It’s a heated game of versus mode in
Left 4 Dead 2. My friends and I are trudging through The Dark
Carnival campaign, making pretty good time. As I mow down a couple
zombies with my AK-47, I instinctively hit the reload button even
though I’ve only shot a few rounds. Then I hear it: the sound of a
Charger as he tackles one of my teammates and knocks me on my back.
I’m the closest one to him, and as I get to my feet, I pull the
trigger only to watch in horror as my character has to restart the
reload animation. My teammate’s precious life ticks away, and soon
we’re overrun trying to pick him up off the ground.
If you play lots of shooters, you may have picked up this bad
habit along the way. Sure, reloading your gun when you’ve still got
nearly all of the clip left probably doesn’t come back to hurt you
99% of the time. Trust me though, if you play with this bad habit
long enough, sooner or later it’ll come back to haunt you. You’ll be
left to watch helplessly as a teammate is pummeled before
your very eyes. You’ll wake up one night in a cold sweat as the sound
of them screaming over the mic “WHY WON’T YOU HELP ME” is
still ringing through your head. *shiver*
5) Button Mashing.
Of all the bad habits I have in gaming, this is probably the most
serious offender. Look, I’ve been playing games for a long time and
I’m proud that at the very least, I’ve given every game genre a try.
I’ve enjoyed some genre’s more than others (RPG, RTS, Shooters,
Adventure, etc), but there are some that I simply can’t seem to
master. At the top of that list, without a shadow of a doubt, is
fighting games. Not arena fighters like Super Smash Bros., but games
like Street Fighter, Tekken, Marvel vs. Capcom and the like. And the
reason for this is because… my hand eye coordination is atrocious.
Scratch that, just my coordination in general. It’s why I was a
runner in High School and not a… well, any other kind of athlete.
I’m not bothered by this fact, but it’s the truth.
It’s also why, even after 25 years of playing video games, I still
mash buttons. I know, it’s terrible, but I just can’t do those tricky
combos everyone else can do in their sleep. T\