The other day I bought a PS4. I was intrigued as to what the next generation of gaming was like and having recently moved countries, was finding elements of this temporarily solitary existence slightly hard to cope with. What I didn’t predict as I carried the oversized bag from the shop was that the experience, of plugging in and playing, would be a thoroughly enlightening one. Here’s why..
The fundamental change between why I wanted to game now and how I used to game as a child, although both escapes for time spent alone, is the first noticeable thing.
As a child, gaming was a way to escape the fact that, in large, I hated my life. I was quite unhappy and games allowed me to temporarily escape by pretending I was someone else, or somewhere else… Somewhere happier. I became quite obsessive over games, the characters, the plot and the other worlds. They were safely adventurous, whilst real life was not (or so I thought). I didn’t know who I was, so pretending to be someone else was a good way to escape this reality.
I return to games, as an adult, with an entirely different mindset. I know who I am. I am happy and I feel purposeful in my day to day life. Games are no longer an opportunity for escape from something bad, to something better, but instead a way to calm my happy busy mind; in essence entering something good from something good and making something great.
Playing into my joy is also the fact that games have improved exponentially since I was a child. I picked ‘The Witcher 3’ as my first game on ps4 and was immediately blown away at how beautiful it was, how compelling the story is and how fun the whole experience has become.
Gaming is no longer an escape for me but instead a periodic restful haven to relax my happy busy mind. I can honestly say that I am thrilled to have it back in my life in this healthier format.