Videogames are my favourite pastime. I play them more than I watch movies, read books or comic books or consume any other medium there is. However, it’s also the only medium where I don’t finish everything I start. When it comes to books, movie, shows and the like, I normally finish them, sooner or later. But there are many, many games I have given up on.
It hasn’t been always that way. During my PlayStation 1 days, I feel like I finished way more games than now. I had more time to play videogames, of course, but I still think I was more focused on them. This changed with the evolution in my taste. I started enjoying RPGs more and more. A lot of the games that are lying around and collecting dust now are JRPGs and that might be the biggest part of the problem: While I love to collect JRPGs, I rarely put the time into them to properly play them. So most of them I’ve played for about 2-3 hours on average, but never made it far. There are exceptions to this, mainly the Persona series and games like Radiant Historia and Fire Emblem: Awakening, but they are few and far between.
8-12 hour games are way more manageable. 4-Hour experiences? Those I can deal with even better. Especially when you have a job and even a family, your free-time is going to be very precious. And while I was able to play 20-30 hours per week when I was younger, that’s simply not the case anymore. Besides that, there are way more multiplayer games around these days that demand more time from you to master them. So, your free time is going to be even more reduced. And since you don’t only want to play videogames but also want to enjoy other media, finishing games becomes near impossible.
What’s the solution? Well, I think shorter games is one possible route to go. Well placed checkpoints in addition to auto-saves are also a great help, since they let you stop at any moment in order to play again at a later moment in time more easily. Adjustable difficulty settings and even content settings (Let me focus on story instead of combat for example) are also great ways to make it easier for more people to enjoy a game. One of the reasons I enjoy portable gaming so much is because a lot of them are designed to be interrupted at any moment.
How about you? Are you experiencing the same thing? What’s your solution?