My son’s asleep, my wife’s not at home. At last, I have the living room to myself for a few minutes. I switch on the console. Time to unwind and take out a few virtual opponents. Great entertainment. I can’t wait.
No! I’m forced to install the latest console update. Crap, this is going to cost me 15 of my precious minutes. I’ll get a bit less gaming time, but OK, I can live with that. I’ve deactivated automatic updates. Why? With the environment and my bank account in mind, I don’t want to waste electricity if I’m not using my console. After what feels like an eternity, the update has finally been installed.
Nooo! F#?*ing hell! The d#%mn needs to update, too. Now I really feel the needs to blow the head off a virtual opponent. But instead, I’m forced to wait another eternity until another update is completed.
Oh my dear console, what’s become of you?
It was at the end of the 80s that I saw the plumber in his famous overall – who, by the way, doesn’t want to be a plumber any more – jumping around on the NES for the first time. I was in awe. I’d discovered a new passion: gaming. After a few very enjoyable years of gaming on my NES, I switched over to gaming on my PC.
But this relationship wasn’t meant to last. I found it really annoying that so many games didn’t work and I was constantly upgrading my computer. So I went back to gaming on my console – PlayStation at the time; PSone later on.
And I loved the comfort of it: All you need to do is inset the CD-ROM and off you go. Well, it took a bit longer with the swapping trick for imports from the US and Japan, but it was still way easier and faster than on the PC. At last, I could put all my energy into gaming instead of installing stuff.
My love for consoles lasted for several years. I admit, every now and then, I cheated on the console and played a game on the PC, but I always returned to my loved ones – PlayStation 2, Dreamcast, Gamecube and Xbox. Great times, great games. Until PlayStation 3 was introduced and this long-term relationship started to go downhill.
I admit, integrated storage has a few advantages: I can download games directly from the store, there's no need to go to a shop or wait for a parcel. Anything I want is available at any time and at the touch of a button. But what's the price you pay? And I'm not referring to the price tag of the console.
My golden age of gaming is over. I have a wife, a child and a full-time job. And I'm not the youngest any more. My back is twitching and the oxygen supply is not working as it used to. Sport is becoming more and more important. All of this takes up a lot of time.
Time that I can’t invest in gaming. Free time has become very precious and having to install updates is nothing but a waste of time for a casual gamer like I am. I might as well switch back to gaming on my PC. Plus, updates are a welcome excuse for the gaming industry to launch unfinished games. Your game is buggy? Don’t worry, just patch it up with one, two or a hundred updates.
At last, the game has finished updating. I’m ready to go. With a gun in my hand, I’m all set to let off steam and go after my opponents. Waah waah! Darn, my son has woken up. I stop the game and take care of him.
Without those updates, I’d have had my dose of gaming by now and would be much more relaxed. Thank you, gaming industry, for making my life more complicated for no reason at all.
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