If I remember correctly, I started playing games when I was in elementary school fourth grade. The game was called B.O.U.T. and it was a casual-robot-fighting game where players fight against enemy bots. In the game, I could transform into a bigger robot as my ultimate skill and drop kick on the enemies.
The game was extremely friendly to beginners. Based on the fact that I (an elementary school kid) was able to have fun with my friends and I only played less than several hours a week proved that the game was extremely casual.
The game also didn’t pressure the player to be strong. If the enemies were too strong, we just had to bring more people to our party. It was truly an online cooperation game where people would fight against a common enemy as one.
However, it all changed when I was introduced to another game called League Of Legends a.k.a League.
League was an ordinary competitive game where you choose a character and team up with 4 other people to fight against the other team of players. The primary objective was to destroy the other team’s building. Although it had some cooperative elements in the game, League was heavily focused towards competitive and it was (and probably still is) incredibly popular among students.
I first started playing League when I was in middle school second grade. The feeling that I just won against another person on the internet was weird but addicting and it felt like a great achievement to win the round. However, when I lost the round or got KO-ed by the opponent, it felt like as if I have just lost something significant (well, I did lose a lot time to that game…)
Although the game was addicting and sometimes entertaining, I started realizing something odd: I never felt as relaxed as before when playing League. Whenever I was playing League, I could feel all my senses being narrowing down into the game. Concentrating and being alert puts pressure on ones mind and this eventually leads to tiredness when the intensity is gone.
I felt tired after playing the game instead of being happy that I was able to play and have a good time with my friends. Thinking of it now, playing League was truly a waste of time, but back then, I wanted to be better and stronger in the game than others.
Put it simply, I was addicted to the game but not on the level where I was unable to continue my normal life. But now, I want to play games like I did in elementary school. No pressure to be better or stronger, but to just enjoy the game.
Although a lot of games nowadays tend to have more popularity with the competitive genre, there are still games that tells us an amazing story,
or show us the advancements that people made in game development that just makes the players drop their jaws.
So, when you are feeling stressed out with competitive games, it probably is a good idea to remember the enjoyment that games used to bring us.