Monday, May 30, 2022

Another Type Of Retirement

When I returned from my 2019 Appalachian Trail hike I was a bit adrift.  A few weeks after returning I stumbled on a game.  I started playing.  The Game was a dungeon crawler with different solo and group events. You gained gold, gems, and gear grinding dungeons.  Before long I was hooked.

I played every day.  I even played while we were on vacation in Patagonia.  The game gives rewards for everyday you logged in.  I never missed a single one.  Not a single one over the next nine-hundred and fifty-five days.

Six or seven months ago I started losing interest in the grind.  I was now an endgamer.  I had mythic gear, mythic mount, mythic runes, and mythic enchants.  I grinded dungeons until I had two fully stabled mythic familiars.   I even managed to make my first piece of ancient gear.  I still had a long way to progress - there was always something new to chase - but it was no longer fun and it was feeling more and more like a chore.

The Game keeps track of how long you were logged into the game and I ended up with two-hundred fifty-four days and seven hours of gameplay.  Doing some sad mathematics I discovered that since 15 October, 2019 I'd spent 26.62% of my time playing the game.  I can't say I was proud of that number.

What kept me going for so long, besides the fun of the early, pre-endgame grind, was the players I would chat with while playing.  Over the past couple of years I gained friendships in the game chatrooms.  The game devs decided to drop the chatrooms this year but, seeing the writing on the wall, one of my friends, VagabondZebra247, set up a chatroom server on Discord nearly a year before.  Our little corner of the gaming universe has since accumulated, what a recent addition described as, an eclectic group.  Just how we all like it.

With a way to stay connected with friends outside of the Game and with the Wife retiring, I decided it was time to retire from the Game. So last Thursday was my last day. It feels weird at times.  The feels were not as hard as the Infernal Game most likely because I was still connected to my friends.  There is definitely a great sense of freedom as I no longer have to plan my days around resource regeneration.  My attention feels less divided and more focused.  Once again I am free to enjoy the Real World distraction free.

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