The “MultiSinglePlayer” Conundrum

So, yeah.

We all know gaming has become wildly popular in the past 2 decades. Yes, gaming has been a big deal for a very long time. But wrap your mind around this young people. It. Wasn’t. Always. Cool. To. Do. I’m not going to launch into that rant here though. Not today anyway. I’m here to talk about a personal side effect of the social age of gaming. I’ve come to call it the “MultiSinglePlayer Conundrum.”

I grew up in a pretty hectic household. There were a lot of things going on that I won’t get into, but I spent a lot of time gaming. Alone. In my room. Isolated. And I was OK with that! It was my escape, just as it was for many others from my generation. The only time I was able to share that passion was when I would discuss it with friends. Sometimes outside playing, sometimes at school. Those times were very exciting for me. I loved being able to talk about something I felt so strongly about with others who loved it. I suspect many others did as well, which is why online gaming has risen in popularity so quickly. Many gamers wont even PLAY games without an online multiplayer component, and most will shun games without a competitive online offering. I don’t belong to either category, but I have still been affected in ways I didn’t anticipate.

So let me explain what the MultiSinglePlayer conundrum is. I love multiplayer co-op gaming. It’s my favorite genre yesterday, today, and tomorrow. I’ve always been a Multi-Tap baby. 4 player games on SNES. 8 player games on PS1. 4 players on N64. I’ve ALWAYS been into gaming with others. The more? The merrier. You would think online gaming would be a god send for someone like me right? And in many ways, it has been. But in one particular way, it hasn’t. So the MultiSinglePlayer conundrum is when you can’t play SINGLE player games…..alone. I need other people, to play games by myself. And I feel like this feeling is partly to blame for so many gamers suddenly wanting to stream. That’s a topic for another day though.

So back to the conundrum. I literally have minimal motivation to play video games when I’m completely alone these days. My friends are such a huge part of my gaming experience now, and without them, playing can get boring quickly. Don’t get me wrong, gamers gon’ game. I still play when I’m not in a party, or if I’m by myself. But I can’t do it for too long. Marathon gaming sessions alone? Thing of the past. Throw others in the mix though? Suddenly I can play ANYTHING. I just need that energy. Streaming also fills that void for me. I can play if I have an audience, or a person to discuss what’s happening with in real time. It’s just odd to me though. I’ve often wondered how prevalent this feeling is. Am I the only one that feels like this? Is it common? Is this anyone’s motive for streaming?

Anyway, let me know how you feel. See you soon.

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