Alex’s Analysis – Out of Time

posted by on 2nd March 2013, at 12:27am

Kids, a word of warning: if you want to become successful in the future, you cannot let your life get taken over by a game.

Yes. I, Alex 43, a Runescape player since 2001 (going for the 15 year cape very soon) am telling you guys that Runescape is not a life. It’s my childhood taken from me, tied up in a few strange, though humorous looking knots, and used to slap me awake several times.

Do I wish I had used that time to practice the guitar or a second language? Yes. Nowadays, holding onto a 9-to-5 job, a second one-day part-time job, a gathering that happens in the afternoons, a class in another evening, a whole day spent on a real-life construction project, and several other responsibilities in between, I definitely am starting to wish I used that time on other things.

Do I regret the time I spent on Runescape? No. Why is that? Because good video games are addictive, and I’ve learned to limit myself from this experience. Yes, I missed out learning the guitar and a second language, but what can I do? At that time, I wasn’t really that passionate about those things. Now I am.

And now, because I am limiting myself, I actually am practicing the guitar and a second language. Better late than never, after all.

Now, I’m not saying you shouldn’t make this mistake and you should learn from mine. By all means, so long as it doesn’t mess with your schoolwork or part-time-job (you can tell I’m directing this at a younger audience by now, right?), game on, cannoneers! Instead, I just want to give you guys a word of warning:

Once you get a job and enter the world of responsibility, you will be torn between the two; video games and work. You will only have a fraction of the time you used to for game time. There will be days where you just don’t want to go to work, and instead spend the day playing your favourite game because of an update or you are just that close to finishing the game’s hardest challenge.

When that’s the case, you must ALWAYS pick work over the game. The game can wait; nobody will judge. Never, never, NEVER (triple negative; where’s your God now?) take the day off without letting your boss know and assume you won’t be needed. You will be shirking your responsibility and betraying the trust of your boss and your co-workers for a game that could’ve waited the 8 hours, or even to the weekend.

Only do that if you want to get fired and have a scarring record on your resume that will hinder your search for a future job. And believe me; you don’t want that.

Now, if you absolutely must be there for a one-day only in-game event (a Jagex Moderator is giving out free party hats or a thousand spins every half hour or something), then plan ahead and first ask your boss permission. Give them at least a week’s notice that you want to take the day off. “Can I have the [insert day here] of next week off?” rather than “Can I have next [insert day here] off?”. Not only will you have a greater chance of your boss saying “yes”, but it would give them a nice big chunk of time to accommodate for your absence. Most of the time, the game will give you fair warning so you can plan ahead anyways.

You don’t have to tell the boss it’s for a game. You could always use the excuse that you need a “break from it all”, and that “a good day of rest and relaxation” would really help. Unless they want you to be perfectly honest, to which you should honestly tell them it’s a one-day event for your favourite game. They may shake their finger at you and lecture you a bit about priority, but they may still at least one-time give it to you because you were honest about it.

And if he/she/it/demi says no, then… that’s life, unfortunately. You must accept it at that. Gotta take the bad with the good, I’m afraid. Message a good friend to try to get you at least a pink hat, and go to work without a second thought about it. Maybe during your lunch break, you can still sneak on for a half-hour.

Again, don’t get worked up over having to quit Runescape altogether. You don’t have to! Start by pacing yourself. Maybe limit yourself to a few hours every day, or just spend a few days going straight for your goal and getting it out of your system. You can either allow yourself to either pace yourself more, or you can ultimately make yourself bored with the game such that you don’t want to play it much anyways. But you don’t have to quit.

…please don’t. Not very many players left online that I know. And I get rather lonely sometimes.

Until next time,

Cheers, cannoneers!

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