Rethinking Gaming in a Perspective Inspired by Reading

Rethinking Gaming in a Perspective Inspired by Reading
Photo: Murathan Biliktu / Ephemera

Lately I've been thinking about how I spend a lot of time playing games on my handheld devices instead of my computer. This got me thinking why am I doing this? And why does it feel better than just sitting in front of a computer? And I realized that it's just like reading a book. We pick up the books, read for a while and and then put them down with the intention of coming back later. 

The Nintendo Switch revitalize the handheld gaming with so many handheld devices around. Playing games isn't just about sitting in front of a desk or a screen anymore. I can start playing, stop and pick up where I left off whenever I want. I've always liked handheld gaming, especially my Vita and my 3DS. These two devices didn't tie me down to one spot. They were more flexible, letting me play whatever I want and whenever I want. With new portable gaming options. After the Switch came out, it became really easy to enjoy games like this again.

Handhelds are flexible, they don't require you to commit

Being busy was my excuse for a while to not watch anything or play games. Thus, reframing how I play video games changed my perspective on how I could integrate video games back into my life. Now I get to enjoy my backlog. I can discover games, I can finally play them, and I find it genuinely enjoyable to play without feeling overwhelmed by the games. 

I don't have to give my time. I don't have to commit. Playing a game for hours. Basically. If you are like me and if you felt like gaming was taking your time, I think approaching these handheld devices or games in a similar manner to how we approach books can lead to more enjoyable gaming experiences without thinking about how it's going to take so much time. 

Being able to save at anytime

There's no rule against using bookmarks to remember the page where we stopped reading. Likewise, I believe video games should permit us to save our progress at any point we choose. Just like how we can save the page we read with a bookmark. I think allowing players to save at any point is respecting them. You're essentially allowing players to be free. I don't think players should adapt to the game. Of course, there are certain games that need players to sit down for a while and adapt to the game experience because it's necessary for the game. But I don't think that's the case with most of the games. 

Cloud Gaming is a good direction

In addition to these handheld devices, cloud gaming is also another thing that made it easier for me to enjoy games, because now I can play almost all the new titles, the contemporary titles on my phone, on my smaller handheld devices, and even my Steam deck. 

It's more flexible now. I think that's also making me want to play more, because like I said before, I don't have to think about a certain place, certain device, and how many hours am I going to put it in. I can just pick it up and play. That's it.