Too much of a good thing

A lot of my friends are super-excited about Dragon Age:Inquisition coming out this fall. When my friends get excited, I get excited, or at least try to. What’s better than being in a social bubble with other folks enjoying the same game you are?

But I’d never finished Dragon Age: Origins or Dragon Age 2, and I’m trying to stick to a policy of not buying sequels until I’ve played through the earlier games in a series. So I’m in the midst of taking another stab at Dragon Age: Origins.

And whew, what a grind it is. I’m something like 33 hours in and I think a little over half-way through the main storyline (based on the fact that you have to get 4 factions to sign on with you and I’ve gotten 2 so far). So I’m predicting something like 60 hours to finish this game, and that’s skipping a ton of side quests and things added as DLC after the fact. Then I have Dragon Age 2 to get through, and only then can I consider Dragon Age 3.

And suddenly it all feels too much like work, particularly when I read posts like Dragon Age Inquisition Will Literally Have Tons of Gameplay Hours, Borderline Impossible To Tell How Many.

There was a time when I loved hearing that an upcoming game was going to be epic in length, but that was long ago. Back then I had lots of time and not a lot of money so I wanted to squeeze as much gameplay out of each title that I could. These days I have plenty of money (in terms of buying games anyway) but not very much time. And there are SO MANY GAMES to play, both upcoming and in my huge pile of shame.

The problem is that I’m intensely curious about games. I want to experience them all, which clearly isn’t possible. But when I find a game that’s 60 hours long and I figure if I play for an average of an hour every night (which feels about right…some nights I play a few hours, some nights not at all), that’s two months spent with one game, and over the course of those two months about 6 new games will come out that I want to play! Plus these days I tend to play (single player) games for their narrative and not many games have a story good enough to keep your interest for 2 months.

But what really makes me weird about all of this is that I love MMOs and of course 60 hours in an MMO is nothing, right? I guess the fact that MMOs don’t have a “finish line” makes me play them in a more free-form way, if that makes sense. I’m not striving towards this The End goal, I’m just playing to have fun.

Anyway the point is after reading that DA3 is so big that it’s impossible to say how long it is, I’m much LESS interested in playing it than I was before. It just sounds too intimidating! I wonder if anyone else feels the same way?

3 thoughts on “Too much of a good thing

  1. From what I’ve read the third one will be 250 hours in terms of being the ultimate completionist. I doubt it will be that long if you are just playing the main story. What you have to understand tho is that DA2 is pretty short compared to DA1 and a lot of the maps are recycled. So you are basically running around something like 8 maps for the entirety of the game . People bitched and moaned about this especially after skyrim came out. DA3 is also hopefully wrapping up stray storylines from 1 & 2. So I’m sure they have to give some time to that. That’s my hope anyways.

    I say all this but the bottomline is if you aren’t enjoying the story and it hasn’t grabbed you then I wouldn’t push yourself to finish. I think that just adds to the strain of playing the game because then you are looking at the clock asking when will this be fun instead of oh shit I just wasted 2 hours.

  2. I’m too stubborn to give up!

    I think my biggest mistake was playing on PS3; I remember from my early days that combat was a lot more fun in the PC version where you could play it almost like a turn-based game.

    BUT, you’re right that the “I want to get this finished” mentality is hurting my enjoyment of it too, since I just ignore sidequests and don’t mix up party members or anything.

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