So I stumbled across this little questionnaire designed to test you and see if maybe, just maybe you’re addicted to video games.
Now, I can kind of spoil you the results on this. I don’t believe I’m addicted to video games, at least not in the sense of the true definition of addiction:
“compulsive need for and use of a habit-forming substance (such as heroin, nicotine, or alcohol) characterized by tolerance and by well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal; broadly : persistent compulsive use of a substance known by the user to be harmful”
The obvious term to look for is “withdrawal”, which is something I do not go into if I don’t have my hands on a video game controller. I don’t need to play video games to satisfy any sort of craving or anything of that nature, gaming is just something I really enjoy and it’s a tool, much like music, comedy and other forms of entertainment that I use to calm down, forget about a hard day at work, or just because, well…it’s fun!
But I thought it’d be interesting to go through, so let’s take a crack at this questionnaire, shall we?
Do you often re-live gaming experiences or think about future ones?
In terms of the experience itself, not really. I remember key moments in video games, but the actual experience I had while playing these moments? Not at all, honestly. My memory isn’t all that great in that aspect, I’m not really one to remember how I felt or how I was at the time of any sort of event, I just remember the event.
Do you hide or lie about your gaming?
For me, it’s impossible to do so. I wear the ‘gamer’ moniker proudly on my sleeve. I have gaming t-shirt, my laptop is specifically a gaming laptop, I play video games all the time, I talk about video games all the time, you’d basically have to be deaf and blind to not know that I game. A lot.
Do you get very angry when someone or something interrupts a game?
Absolutely and I don’t feel like that’s a bad thing. Like I said, a lot of my game time is used as a way for me to unwind, to relax. So when someone or something interrupts me from the thing I’m trying to use to relax, of course I get pissed off. Although I’m also the kind of person who gets mad when anyone messes up an internal schedule I had planned. I’m very meticulous, everything I do, I’m doing for a reason and it’s not usually spur of the moment.
Have you ever taken a break from gaming and binged uncontrollably upon your return?
No, I am fully in control of when I play and how long I play it for. I don’t leave my PlayStation 4 off for a couple days and come back and play 18 hours straight the next time I turn it on.
When upset, do you soothe yourself with games or plans to game?
As I said earlier, games are essentially one of my biggest outlets to calm down and relax. So yes.
Do you find yourself gaming in the early morning?
When I worked night shifts, yes, but now that I’m a 7am-3pm shift worker, it’s not viable to do so.
Do you find ways to game when away from home?
Not really, I’ve never been much of a mobile gamer, whether it’s on my phone or on handheld consoles. Ever since high school, I never really played my GameBoy outside of my house, I usually just lied on my bed and played it there.
Do you set limits with gaming and then break them, playing hours longer than intended?
I don’t have a “limit” per se, if I have to go to bed for work in the morning, I won’t stay up too late. But if it’s the weekend, I’ll play until my brain tells me it’s time to pass out.
Do you lose hours of sleep to gaming?
If anything, I lose an hour or two from my usual 8 hours of sleep. I go out of my way to make sure I get at least 6 hours of sleep every night.
Have you called in sick or late to work or skipped classes to game?
I have booked days off work for a new game release. Recently, I used vacation days for the Destiny 2 launch. But calling in sick, or showing up late to work because of gaming? No, that would be stupid for me to do.
Have you sworn off a game, uninstalled it, and later returned to it?
No, when I decide to put a game down, it’s done. It’s very rare for me to go back to a game when I don’t want to play it anymore.
Do you feel guilt and shame around your gaming?
No, that’s a retarded question.
Does gaming contribute to arguments in your relationships?
If they did, I wouldn’t be in a relationship with that person. If they can’t accept my gaming habits, it’s kind of a deal breaker to me. I have zero obligation to change who I am to satisfy another person, the only person I need to worry about 100% is myself.
Has gaming taken the place of any hobbies or sports you used to enjoy?
No and in fact, for the past three years I’ve started playing sports more than I ever have in my life.
Do you forget appointments, responsibilities or deadlines in work or school when gaming?
Nope, I’m way to schedule-oriented to cause that kind of problem.
Do you become irritated and defensive when people suggest you might be gaming too much?
Yes, because I don’t feel people should be getting on my case when I have a stable job, stable income, stable relationship, stable mind and I’m also straight-edge, so I’m drug-free, alcohol-free, all that jazz. If someone gave me shit for gaming too much, I’d absolutely be upset at that notion.
Have your hours spent gaming increased over time?
No, it’s dropped significantly in the past three years, as I’ve started playing more sports, taking time to write content for this blog and my social life has never been bigger.
Do you blow off social events to game?
I have said no to hangouts because of gaming yes, but these are people I hang out on a consistent basis. If old friends I hadn’t seen in months asked me to hang out, I can deal with not playing my vidja games for a day.
Have you lost contact with friends and family since gaming?
Unless you’re counting the natural number of contacts you lose over time for reasons like moving farther away from each other, making new friends and other such reasons, no. Gaming doesn’t affect my social life.
Do you have intense feelings (highs, lows, anger, fear) while gaming?
Absolutely. Anyone who plays games online knows that it’s really easy to get involved and lost in a game, especially emotionally. I can get super happy, super pissed, super scared and super sad while playing a game. And I think that’s really freaking cool that games are capable of doing that to me, hence why I use it as a tool for my own personal enjoyment and quite honestly, my betterment.
Well that was a fun little side piece there, I hope you guys enjoyed that. Take the questionnaire yourself and post in the comments below, let me know what you think about your own gaming habits, or the habits of people you know.