Is Family Gaming...GASP...Overrated?!
Diablo IV

Diablo IV was officially announced as expected/leaked, and my group of friends have all chittered excitedly about playing it. One of my friends said she was sure that by the time it came out, her daughter would be too cool to play games with her anymore. It made her a little sad. I, on the other hand, was baffled. I’m looking forward to the day that my eldest doesn’t want to play video games with me.

Gaming has always been my personal escape aside from reading. I like playing alone for several reasons. The biggest one is that I don’t want people to see how badly I suck at games, but the other is that I have such a specific way of playing a game, I get frustrated too easily. I’ve learned that if I want to find all of the collectibles in a game, I have to play by myself and play with friends if they want to. It’s one of the few reasons why I’m playing through the Halo series with my eldest—I’ve already found all of the collectibles I’m ever going to in those games. I’ve already found each secret message, each movie, etc.

I also hate replaying sections because of death. Trust me, I’m just as mean to myself when I keep dying as I am to my gaming partners. My patience is thin most of the time anyway (having kids will do that to you), so if I’ve actually found time to play a game for myself, I will get pissy if most of that precious time is spent replaying one choke point over and over because you can’t figure out how to take cover.

I actually fired my husband over this exact circumstance when playing the original Gears of War. Remember the section where Marcus and Dom have to kill a Berserker by getting her to knock down pillars holding up the ceiling in order for the Hammer of Dawn to pinpoint her location? That section is a PITA when playing alone, because Dom AI has a rabid case of the stupids. One would think a real human controlling him would make this section easier. Not in this case.

After either the fifth or sixth failure, I told my husband to just go stand in the corner and run away from her if she sees/hears him. He couldn’t manage that. I lost count how many tries it took to finally kill her. The next day, he came out of the bedroom to see me playing Gears of War solo. He said, “I guess I’m not playing anymore?” I said, “Nope. You’re fired.”

Diablo IV

Now please note that this is in regards to playing games with family. This has nothing to do with playing games against family. I’ll gladly play Mario Kart or a fighting game with my kids or husband. At least then, it’s all up to me to do well, and I’m not dependent upon others to keep up or be cool with me searching every nook and cranny of an area for a collectible.

Am I going to end up playing Diablo IV with at least one of my kids? Probably. And I’ll most likely implement the same strategy I did when the eldest begged to play Diablo III: pair his brand new character with my level 70 paragon 15 character. It cuts down on so much frustration when he Leeroy Jenkins every battle.

Keri Honea
Keri Honea

Contributing Writer
Date: 11/13/2019

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