Avoiding the Hype = Delayed Pay Off

  • Shortly after I had discovered the Allies and didn't really know who each one was, I remember watching a "Talking Syndrome" stream and Huber saying "Knowing" is an awesome movie so I watched it. This began the continuing and rapid decline of my trust in any opinion Huber has on any type of media. Love the personality, hate most things he loves.

    But then, on the recent episode of Prison of Love with Ben, they got to talking about enjoying a game rather than just finishing it and moving on. Then Huber mentioned going back to a game and experiencing it "beyond the sphere of judgement" and my head almost exploded.

    In the last decade or so, I have found myself enjoying games more when I don't have any expectations for them that have been built by external hype and, while this is likely a reflection of me more than anything, I wonder if this is a thing others experience and not just the ball of energy that is Huber and the nitpicking wet blanket that is me.

    My two biggest examples that I look at are Breath of the Wild and Hitman 2016. I didn't love BOTW and I think that at least part of that was because I was just trying to keep pace with the hype. I was trying to get the whole experience that everybody was talking about as quickly as possible. I still dislike a lot about it but I feel like those things would have been easier to forget had the game not been everywhere I turned.

    Conversely, Hitman was basically dead by the time I got to it. All the DLC levels were there to play and I could tackle it all however I wanted and there weren't a million videos popping up in my recommended every day. It just felt like this game was mine and I could go through it as I pleased and not have to worry about 10 things I must know before playing or the 15 best secret areas or the one review everybody else disagreed with.

    And just to clarify, I'm not talking about things not living up to the hype. End Game, for example, I waited on and didn't really enjoy and admit that that must at least partly be due to my expectations.

    tl;dr - do you find it easier to slow down and enjoy something when it is no longer part of the (hate the word but it feels like an appropriate bookend) zeitgeist?

  • I basically don't regard or pay attention to the zeitgeist at all. I'll see new movies or play new games if they interest me, but there's so much older stuff I haven't experienced yet that I'd like to get to first. I haven't played a game from 2019 yet, I've never read a novel of my own volition written after the 1980s, and I'm more likely to see second run or restored films in theaters as opposed to new stuff. I don't know if I enjoy it more or less because I'm instantly skeptical of anyone telling me how great anything is unless I know that person really well.

  • I used to never pay attention to the hype and I started getting into the zeitgeist as you put it and it hasn't done me much other than cause me to look at the next thing rather than what I currently have.

    Lately, I've been dialing into some really good games like GT Sport and COD MW and not feeling the slightest bit guilty that there are 50 other things out there. Enjoying it waaaay more.

  • I struggle to avoid feeling like I'm missing out on some game for not enjoying it as much as I should, and I also struggle about not being able to play an exclusive from a console that I don't own, but since I have limited time in a way that I can't finish the small list of games that I currently have, I've learned to manage it way better than in my teens. There's plenty of classics in this gen that I didn't finish before selling them, but I feel a lot better regarding my games by keeping my collection small and with just the games that I enjoyed or backlog that I still feel like playing someday. I like to think that makes my collection interesting and better reflects who I am.

    I'm also a lot more criterious when purchasing a new game, I only buy what I feel like playing at the moment and I don't lose time looking back at the games I might have missed.

  • Something else I want to add.

    A lot of people credit the PS2 as being the best console ever made because of its eclectic and massive library made by talents around the entire world. But that is only part of the reason why I love that console.

    I think back to 2004 or 2005 when I purchased my PS2 and I got it because my friends older brother introduced us to SOCOM II online multiplayer. I didn't even fully comprehend competitive online games back then so this blew my mind. I immediately got a router and ethernet from Best Buy, who back in 2004 didn't even seem to know what a router was fyi.

    I played SOCOM II pretty much from 2004-2007 non-stop. While the PS2 was having its glory years, I was always playing one or two games: SOCOM II, SOCOM 3, Hitman Bloodmoney, GTA San Andreas. This is the PS2 we're talking about. A great new game was releasing every few months and I was beyond happy with my choice of games. If I was always looking for the next thing back then, I think I would have had a horrible time. But instead I had some of the most fun ever just playing games at my own pace and not keeping up with what's new or old or whatever.

    I gotta get back to that mentality.

  • I think trying to keep up with the zeitgeist has definitely affected my gaming experience in the recent years. There's just so much good stuff to play, and I'm basically interested in almost every genre so I can't help to try them out as soon as I can. The peak of this effect is when I played God of War 2018. I just get so focused on trying to consume the game as fast and effective as possible, and I was frustrated by many sections of the game (especially in the high elf-dark elf world). As soon as I realized that, I took a small break and approached the game in a slower way, and I came to really appreciate the game again. I still want to replay GoW, just to approach it again in a much more meaningful way instead of trying to half-ass speedrun it.

    Anyway, after that happens I just gave up and tried a more natural approach in new games, only buying new games when I don't have too much on my hands and getting rid of that must-finish-soon mentality. That's why it took so long for me to finish RDR 2. I just took a lot of breaks between chapters, and each time I came back, I always felt like I'm in a comfortable place to fully enjoy the game.

  • @bam541 I played GOW 2018 in two sittings. Roughly 14 hours, then 4 hours the next day. As a huuuuuuge God of War fan I was painfully disappointed and I'm still not quite sure if its because I rushed it because I only had 2 days to beat it while my little brother was visiting me, or because that Elf World was basically 1/3 of the game and pretty much trash...

  • @dipset Yikes. that sounds rough. I feel like any game would crumble if you play it in a situation like that, so maybe you should replay it someday. At the very least you could enjoy the elf world a bit more by taking a sightseeing approach, it's so beautiful.

  • Yeah, I always say to myself "carpe diem"; this also applies for my hobbies too. Sometimes I am in that zeitgeist and it sucks usually.