There are times when I am heavily convinced -- even months at a time -- that I have a problem and I try to take some steps to quit League of Legends.
When I think about it, it's the only game that really makes me feel so conflicted as to why I play it. Sure, World of Warcraft was such a huge waste of my time, and so was Maplestory -- but I never hated those games. I wasted my time on those computer programs that I eventually realized that underneath it all was super boring. Fine. At least they gave me some nice memories and a cute (graphics) place to hang out with friends after school. Well, I used to play with friends.
But with League of Legends, it is different. I think it has solidified a mindset towards strangers that is depressing but also in many ways true -- you cannot rely on a stranger to behave in any kind of rational way, or in a way that I myself would act. And being an introvert, this has just caused me to become more introverted. I think it has solidified a mindset that has naturally came about from being raised on the internet and seeing all the different types of people and personalities there are in the world. And it makes me want to have nothing to do with almost every person on the planet. Since the end of middle school, I have observed a steady decline in my friends and people I talk to. In the beginning, it was because I wanted to cut out all of my "fake friends." But in the end, I realized that even with my closest best friend -- we are just 2 people trying to not have a sucky life and entertain each other. I no longer seek out people to talk to on the internet, I no longer try to form parties. Even when I do, it's a hollow experience that quickly degrades. I have grown to become a solo player in MMOs -- games that are meant to be played with other people in order to distract you from the dull basics and mechanics underlying every game. It's kind of a sad existence but it is also a quiet and peaceful to be mostly on your own in the world. I try to think of it as quietly content, although it can easily slide into melancholy some days. I think I no longer have the ability to behave like a 'normal' person when it comes to meeting new people, because I am so uninterested in anyone I meet because I feel like I already know how they will behave and that I will not be interested in their personality. I just don't care about other people. I empathize and feel sad if I see someone fall or get hurt, or being sad, but I don't actually care about them it seems. I don't hang out with people after work, because I don't want to. I don't hang out with my very small limited amount of friends, because I don't really want to. I no longer see the fun in interacting with people after playing online MMOs for such a long period of time.
Background: I have essentially grown up on the internet. From age 12, it pretty much replaced my parents and any questions or concerns I have I always post on the internet in order to have an accurate guage of the problem and possible solutions. I have been playing online games for the past 12 years, and playing video games for the past 17 years. I love fantasy and I wish magic were real -- which only adds to the video game problem because these things are not available in reality. VR excites me and I can imagine spending entire days in a virtual reality if it were created well enough so that I could explore the limits of fantasy. If anyone has seen .hack//SIGN, I think being stuck in that kind of online world would actually be kind of beautiful and interesting.
League of Legends can be incredibly frustrating at times. First of all, I hate losing. The fact that you lost 50% of the time in this game already makes me question why I play. Which then makes me question why I play games at all. After playing MMOs for such a long time, nothing suprises me. It's the same thing every game. Single player games are so much worse -- so predictable I can't play for more than 5 minutes. And then that comes down to the core of it -- League of Legends is intriguing because you don't know what you're going to get. You don't have a guaranteed win. You might have a feeder, a troll, or you might have a great team and kick ass and totally stomp them. And in some sick and twisted way, that seems to be why I keep coming back to it. Because it bring some kind of unpredictability into a very dull universe of games that I feel like I have already explored.
But I think the guilt is the worst of all. The guilt of not being productive all of the time. I want to write a book (possibly a graphic novel), I want to paint, and I want to learn Japanese. I want to do a lot more things too. But video games completely throw that off the table. It's just not an option when I'm playing video games. And when I try to quit, for a month or 2 it is fine. But then it starts to get really boring and I want that quick fix of entertainment that video games provide. I also tend to watch more tv shows when I quit, so I only get 50% of an increase in productivity anyway when it comes to these other goals that I have. With video games, it's so easy to be entertained by them. But then I think -- I could be doing so much more. But do I really have to? Do I need to be productive all the time? Even though I'm an adult, I'm so confused about how my life should be shaped and it seems that I am taking an easy way out rather than having a productive and successful life which makes me feel guilty and bad.