We asked and you delivered. We've collected the stories you submitted (opens in new tab) about your biggest gaming obsessions and, phew, they sure are a roller coaster. Prepare for loss, love, laughs, and pie.
Strap in, make sure you're seated comfortably, and keep some tissues handy. It's okay to feel things.
From LC Lockhart
My story has quite a happy ending.
It's 2012, like most of the other players around the world, I was just a touch upset from the ending of Mass Effect 3. I didn't go join the whole "hold the line" movement, but I did run off to share my grief with the ME Fandom. If anyone has gone and joined a fandom, you'll realise it's like joining a cult. You dedicate your life to said fandom—it's really not a place for the faint of heart. Soon, all I did was play Multiplayer, draw fanart, and write fanfiction. My day-to-day interactions were other players who were also being driven insane by the game. I had to own all the merch, official and unofficial.
It was writing fanfiction that I met my fiance, who also wrote said fanfiction. We shared what we loved and didn't love about the ending, and it became apparent quickly we didn't just like ME, we had tons more in common. A few short months later, I moved 100 miles from my hometown to live with him. Our Mass Effect Merch collection is now combined and sitting in a display cabinet in the hallway. A year Later I became a Community Manager for a games publisher, who liked my social contributions to the ME community, which I used as a large part of my portfolio.
So, woo game obsessions! I'm excited to see where the next one takes me.
From Jendryk Gaming
Gemstone III. It's Gemstone IV now, but still the same MUD. If you don't know the game, it was a text-based massively multiplayer RPG that made it big on AOL back in the mid 90's. I got hooked on it via America Online when 56k internet finally came to our rural town. I was nine or ten at the time, and hadn't really experienced any RPGs at that point, much less online gaming of any sort. The game basically taught me how to type rapid-fire, how to make simple scripts, the concept of supply and demand and advertising a product, and the name of pretty much every type of armor and weapon from the Middle Ages. I'd actually sneak onto the family computer when everyone was asleep to play, and the addiction only ended when pay-per-minute long distance charges were implemented because the local provider was moved to a city farther away. There was no hiding it after the $400 bill.
I lost my access to the computer and internet for two months, but worst yet, I lost my character forever. I still wonder what happened to Gotheran Surauceneumannak.
Aim for the Skryim
From Douglas Copeland
I played my first games on my uncle's old NES. Teenage Mutant Ninja turtles. I then graduated to the Game Boy, Game Boy Color, and Playstation where I spent more time with Spyro the Dragon than I care to admit.
Ultimately, I wound up in College pursuing a Degree in Game Art and Design. The night of one of my Finals for 3D Modeling, Skyrim came out. I went to the midnight release, stayed up til 7:30 AM, then went to take my final and hurried back home to play even more. Over the course of the next four years in school I racked up 777 hours on Skyrim, which happens to be my most played game on Steam.
And since then, I acquired my BFA in Game Art and Design, and a few weeks ago got my first job with a game company. Video games have literally become my life.
CS: OH NO
I binge played CS:GO during my third trimester of 11th grade. I refused to play anything but that game for the longest time (with the exception of Terraria, which also is a whole different addiction from last summer). Also, to make matters even worse, I only played competitive because I thought I was achieving something as a Gold Nova 3. Managing to log approximately 200 hours on the game over the course of what was probably my most important grading period to date, I ruined the grade of a prerequisite to an AP class for my senior year. Can anyone yell idiot?
Skyrim. I was never a big fan of open world RPGs, pretty much sticking to FPS games.
I had always been an extroverted, social character with many different circles. Cue October 2012, I had just finished my studies and was unemployed. I had nothing better to do, so I took up many recommendations and started Skyrim. As I had never really played that sort of open game before, I was unsure what to expect and spent a few hours playing it, trying to get into it, learning the mechanics and carefully picking my character.
Within a couple of days, Skyrim had taken over my life. I was making excuses to my friends to avoid socialising. I was hardly eating. I was avoiding going to the gym. I was sleeping at 6AM every morning and waking up a few hours later. I was dreaming of Skyrim. I was holding in my poops to play Skyrim. It reached a point where I would rather Skyrim than do anything else. I ignored friends' phone calls and never replied to messages. Needless to say, I was cast out of several circles. For three months this went on. Hundreds upon hundreds of hours.
Then I had a breakthrough. I had been playing with only a few mods, most of it was still vanilla Skyrim. I spent hours configuring which mods I wanted to play with. Another three months, for every friend or companion I gained within the game I lost in real life. I married Aela the Huntress, she was my favourite companion. I was inseparable from her and Shadowmere.
Skyrim totally changed my personality. From a very sociable extrovert, I became an antisocial introvert. People talk of certain big changes in life that change you: getting married, having children, finding your ideal job, etc.
Mine was Skyrim.
Paying the pie-per
Left 4 Dead. In university, I put hours upon hours into that game, playing with an absolutely great bunch of guys I met randomly one match. I clocked up nearly 700 hours in one year.
It peaked when I dashed out of my room while waiting in the elevator in No Mercy, and grabbed a pie out of the oven. In doing so I pressed my hand against the grill, badly burning it. Blinking back tears, I dumped my pie on my desk, and kept playing until we had finished the game. By that point it had started weeping and my hand was shaking with the pain. I slapped some Sudo-cream on it and found a compress-style plaster. Then cracked on with the next campaign.
When I eventually told my girlfriend the truth of that burn (I still have a substantial scar), the look she gave me was beyond contempt. Luckily she's still with me five years later.
6,141 hours logged of Garry's Mod. I learned about player-created content, then went on to learn Lua by reading and editing other people's work.
A few years later, and I'm on a programming course, making fully-functional add-ons solely because of jokes taken way too far.
I've become obsessed with programming, and Garry's Mod was probably the game that made the interest become an obsession.
Hardcore no MMOre
Back in 2010 to 2011, I started playing the closed beta for RIFT. This was basically my return to MMOs since abandoning WoW in 2007. I became obsessed almost instantly, playing ten or more hour sessions after work. Once the game launched I continued these streaks. This lasted more than a year. 182 days played later (on one character), I noticed that my left knee and right hand were swelling and becoming quite painful. While playing Rift on a Saturday I blacked out and fell from my chair and woke up in the hospital.
From excessive gaming I developed deep vein thrombosis and a blood clot shot into my chest cavity, slightly cutting off my air supply. Thankfully, my wife found me only a minute or so later and phoned the ambulance.
Lets just say after that and major leg surgery, I stopped playing RIFT and hardcore gaming altogether. I’m now what you call a much more casual gamer, no more MMOs.
Left 2 Wed
From Tornado Nick
Missed my sister's wedding by playing Left 4 Dead 2 on its release day. She still hasn't forgiven me to this day…
Great game though, have thousands of hours logged into it now.