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Is it just me or is it almost impossible to get time to play games once you finish university?

It used to be the case that you’d have the large majority of the hours in the day to get some gaming in. But it seems the second you grab an hour or two in front of the couch, something prevents you from enjoying. Your boss calls you, your partner wants dinner, the dog wants a walk, something interrupts. It’s not the end of the world, but as games become more involved, and your life becomes more complicated, it’s just really difficult to boot up a console.

It eventually comes to a point where you need to take time from something else to game. But what do you take? Do you eat a few hours later? Eating’s overrated anyway, and in the worst cases you can always make a dinner that’s able to be eaten with one hand. But, I guess you probably enjoy steak. So, less time with the girlfriend? Fat chance. Unless you want to be sleeping on the couch, that’s not what you’re going to do. So what gives.

The best way is to find the time where you may not have thought it would be. Bit of Henry Hatsworth at lunch on the DS maybe? Hooking up the PS3 on night shift, or if you’re lucky, installing some of your favourite 2D PC classics on the work PC. But if mid-work gaming isn’t possible, then the next best thing is sacrifice. No more forums, no more TV, make it all about the games. Hook up your PS3 or 360 to your PC monitor (or second if you’re lucky) and even do both. Multi-tasking is a wonderful thing.

Better yet, take advantage of the situation. Involve your partner in your gaming. With the advent of great re-releases of classics and fantastic new co-op casuals, there’s never been a better time to introduce family to your habit. Playing with someone else is always more fun, especially with games like Uno or Castle Crashers, either of which are heaps of fun for people who aren’t normally gamers.

I hate carrying around portables. So I’m also one of those people who kinda baulks at the whole DS/PSP situation. Not that a PSP is all that portable, but that’s a different story. Along with accessories, and cartridges/UMDs, its simply a pain in the arse to cart a pile of “portable” gaming hardware around. What about mobile games? They’re extremely popular in Japan, some selling in the millions. Regardless of your phone model, there’s probably something available you’d like.

The iPhone’s probably the most popular and probably most successful mobile application device so far. And the games are fantastic, both paid and free. Even relatively obscure genres like “Tower Defence” make a pretty decent showing. The large bulk of the titles are under $10 and remarkably fun to play, some even include multiplayer over Wi-Fi or 3G. It’s definately worth downloading a few free titles to play on the bus, I’ve downloaded a few for a few dollars and honestly surprised at how long I play them for.

So, what do you all do to find time to play?

  1. I stay up until 2 or 3am and drag myself out of bed with 4 or 5 hours sleep!!

    Nice read!

  2. I remember the first time I pulled an all nighter. I was trying to raise a gold chocobo in FF7. It was worth it.

  3. I’m still at university, and finding the time right now is already a pain. In the near future I’ll probably be having pretty hefty commutes so I can see that helping me find time to get some gaming done on the go, either through a laptop or a DS (not really overwhelmed with any games on the PSP as of yet.)

  4. I just find a way. DS gaming takes up most of my time, which is one of the reasons I hate driving.

  5. avatar Royalwolf

    I’m currently in school and have the same problem. Haven’t found a solution yet but I’m still working on it. What I used to do was play in the beginning of the week, but that meant I had to play “catch-up” later which is never fun. My current strategy is to try to get most of my work done in the beginning of the week, which rarely over works out.

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