Gaming as an Old Man
As of this year I'm officially old, having reached the ancient, grizzled age of 40. As I'm no longer expected to be sharp or coherent, I'll just throw some thoughts out there about gaming as an Old Man. Feel free to read this in Grandpa Simpson's voice if it helps.
*I still love getting those cheevos, and I'm still competitive to the point of stupidity. That said, I'm finding myself less willing to play "meh" games purely for the sake of score, and less willing to go toe-to-toe with other hardcore players. I started to spin up to fight for the 3rd place slot on Maryland's leaderboard, but gave up a few months into it. I'm no longer willing to put up hundreds of dollars and blow hundreds of hours chasing it.
*This has put me in a weird space where I don't want to chase my closest competition, but I don't have anyone anywhere close to me to fend off, either. I'm not sure what to set as my next gaming goal, so I'm just kind of working on my backlog and waiting for some wishlist items to have a sale.
*I've been able to game more for the pure fun of it, and ignore the scoreboard. I've spent more time with Monster Hunter World this year than probably any other game in the past five years, and it's got a horrendous time / score ratio. Nevertheless, I'm so glad I did, and I'll gladly sink another 50-100 hours in by the time I'm finished.
*Co-op gaming has always been a highlight for me, but it's nearly impossible to schedule, especially since I tend to game with other Old Men. I've found gaming on a regular schedule has been able to keep this tradition alive, to which I'm incredibly grateful.
*I kinda hate competitive multiplayer games now. I don't understand why everybody loves battle royale suddenly. I always hated getting sniped or ambushed in traditional multiplayer...now you base a whole game around it? Nah.
*I hate a lot of the current gaming trends, to be honest. I hate how many AAA games have adopted loot boxes or monitization schemes, like they're some iphone game vs. a 60 dollar title. I won't be buying this year's COD, or anything else following a similar scheme.
*I also miss quality B titles from mid-sized studios. There were a lot of cult games in the last generation that you just don't see in this one. Everything is now a triple-A title or an 8-bit indie game, with almost no middle ground. (For an exception that proves the rule, Hellblade: Setsenua's Sacrifice.)
*I certainly don't have the reflexes I did when I was younger. I need to rely more on skills I've polished with a lifetime gaming career. Patience, strategy, relentlessness, defensive play. Attempting to skate by on skill or reflexes now is basically the gaming equivalent of Batman's first fight with Bane in TDKR. (Spoiler alert: there's pain and humiliation involved.)
*It probably doesn't get said enough, but the TA community is always spectacular. The quality of the achievement guides, and the willingness to help out other people is unmatched. Over the past decade this site has probably helped me get literally thousands of cheevos, and hopefully will be here for decades more.