Tuesday, March 18

Save Your Relationship With Your Gamer Guy, Gals

Mike Smith a journalist for Yahoo! Games has recently published an article titled "Seven Ways to Win Back Your Gaming Spouse". This list is invariably for the ladies to salvage what little bits of relationship could possibly remain with all of us gamer guys who want absolutely nothing to do with a girl. Unless she's giving us the newest Unreal game, and in a Zelda costume.

After the break I'll post the list with my input after each one, but if you're not into reading all of that you can find the original article right here.

Now it's not that I didn't enjoy this article, or that it really conflicts against any of my personal beliefs, I just found it to be a bit.....corny. I digress though, let us carry on.

1. Learn from the game

Games like World of Warcraft use classic behavioral control techniques: they tie small rewards very closely to repetitive chores. If your spouse is neglecting household tasks -- a common complaint among sufferers -- try employing a little positive reinforcement. The next time he empties the trash, play a loud 'Ding!' sound and tell him his Refuse-Disposal skill just increased.

Ok, I can't say much for this one because I've used the RPG -> Real Life system before. Working out for instance, every strength point I earn I have to do 5 or 10 more of a set of whatever work-out I'm doing to earn another. Ding!

2. Suggest a date at a video game movie

Just make sure it's a good one, because most of them are terrible. Resident Evil is a good choice, and assuming your spouse is male, the prospect of staring at Milla Jovovich for an hour and a half should certainly pique his interest. Don't let him sneak off to play his game once the movie is done, either: segue into a more intimate scenario before it ends, or you'll lose his attention.

No. Just no. Ladies, if you honestly think this is a good idea, you need to NOT date a gamer. Any self-respecting nerd knows that the game-based movies are going to suck, the only reason he would want to see it is if it happens to be his favorite gaming series ever. Even then it's risky to take him due to the overwhelming disappointment that comes with every video game movie.

3. Fake a power outage; cuddle up with candles and a board game

No matter how bad your addiction is, you can't play Warcraft with no electricity. Slip out to the junction box and flip the switch (after, of course, making sure any sensitive equipment is safely powered down). Your spouse will be devastated, but they'll be looking for something to keep their mind off the game. What better chance to propose lighting a few candles and playing a round of Scrabble?

Bad idea, after grinding for 5 hours straight and finally acquiring the latest Epic the best way to make a gamer reach for a gun or noose is to take it all away from him. This idea is almost as bad as deleting his save files (NEVER EVER DO THAT ONE EITHER).

4. Put some game into your nighttime activities

If your spouse's gaming addiction is cutting into your bedroom time, think about how you might switch up your usual routine. If they're into military games like Call of Duty or Splinter Cell, uniforms aren't hard to find (nor are night-vision cameras, if you're game). But if they call you a "n00b," it might be time to think about kicking them to the curb.

While this may be true in some cases, not all gamers play war games because they think chicks in uniforms are hot. Some people just like to kill things, or the challenge of taking out the round leader and tea-bagging his corpse. A better costume would be Rayne or Rikku. (Mmmmm, Rikku....)

5. Try a different kind of role-playing game

If you're having trouble distracting your husband from the game, surprise him with a treat. World of Warcraft is packed with sexy female characters (and, let's face it, most other video games). With a little effort in the wardrobe department, you can recapture his attentions by dressing up as a character from the game. We'd suggest a Night Elf as a good starting outfit. For bonus points, learn the character's corresponding dance moves.

Well darn, this one is pretty much idea number 4 but more involved. Nothing to say here, Night Elves FTW.

6. Get away from it all

Surprise your spouse with a weekend getaway to distract them from their addiction. Something that incorporates outdoor activities is best, because then he or she won't have the time or energy to miss their game. Try skiing, mountain biking, watersports, or fishing, or head for an action-packed hotspot like Vegas or New Orleans. Stay away from relaxing beach vacations, and for goodness sake, leave the laptop at home.

While this is a good idea in some cases, some gamers just want to game. For instance I was contemplating what to do over Spring Break today and I realized that I don't want to go anywhere or do anything special, what I want to do most is get a stack of new or unfinished games and grind away. Maybe that's just me though, readers I need your opinions here.

7. If you can't beat 'em...

If all else fails, it's time to consider extreme measures. Have you ever played the offending game yourself? Lots of couples play Warcraft (or similar online games) as a team, leveling up complementary characters and turning isolated and nonconstructive activities into good, old-fashioned quality time together. Most massively multiplayer games are deceptively easy to learn, and you'll have the benefit of an in-house expert to answer your questions in exhaustive detail. Just be careful not to start shirking familial duties yourself.

This is the best idea on the list. If you're not prepared to do a little co-op with your gamer boyfriend, then guess what, you WILL get ignored. He doesn't want to make you feel bad or anything, but there are just certain gears that turn differently in gamers' brains. It's as simple as that, grab P2's controller and have a blast.


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Sp3ctr said...

I can agree with some of the statements, but like you Undra, I also disagree with some. Gamers wanna game. It's why they are called gamers. So why not help em out ladies and just game with them. There guarenteed to enjoy it...unless your playin' a co-op game and you suck entirely. But hey, it doesn't hurt to try. :D