I Am Not a Gamer

Being a tech enthusiast, gaming is almost always a central part of coverage on new products

This makes it kinda annoying following a tech release, because almost half of the video will be showing how well it performs in the new hot game, talking about how much more FPS you will get, when none of this is at all applicable to me. Sure, games can be a great benchmark for performance and using them as such is a good way of comparing one piece of hardware to the other, but it seems like half of the actual coverage is just a screen recording and the host going "WOW WOULD YOU LOOK HOW FAST THIS GAME IS PLAYING". Now some of this certainly is just because I haven't made a concerted effort to actually find non-gaming tech content, with many of the channels I watch being holdovers from my teenage years, where I did have an interest in games.

I built my first PC for the soul purpose of being able to play games I couldn't on my dad's old Core2 Duo iMac. When I got it running, I was amazed by the sheer quantity of games I was able to play, spending countless hours scrolling through the free section of steam, downloading, and playing, only to delete them and never touch them again. Even then, I wasn't sitting on the edge of my seat for new releases, waiting for leaks about the next big release; it was very passive, just a way to spend my time, since I didn't have many friends to occupy that time. As I got older, games took up less and less of that time, being replaced with more fruitful hobbies.

Studying Computer Science, I find myself feeling like an outsider in my classroom. I hear my peers going on and on about the games they play and finding a form of kinship through them, while I hack away at my config files in the corner. I thought that maybe here I would find people who share my flavor of interest in technology, but I have yet to find one. Even outside of the classroom, trying to talk to males my age often ends up with them mentioning a hot new game like it's commonplace, and I've never heard of it. It makes me think that maybe I should try to get back into it, but I always get left with the same bad taste in my mouth whenever I try.

Games leave me feeling really stressed out. The only thing I could think about while playing is "I could be doing something productive with this time". The main exception to this is social games that I'll occasionally play with my friends, but with that the reason I'm playing is really because it's the only option that allows us to talk while doing something. The other exception to this rule is Minecraft, which I find scratches that same creative itch that working on other hobbies has, though this only lasts for a couple weeks until it too gives me that uneasy feeling that I'm wasting my time.

I struggle to find how I really feel about games. Part of me knows that they don't do anything productive and makes me view them negatively. Another part recognizes that they aren't really a social-ill and are a way for people to connect who otherwise wouldn't have. Not to mention their great entry-point for people to get into technology, like it did for me all those years ago.

But the one thing I know is that I am not a gamer

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