There’s something about being stuck at home for a year that can hone one’s psyche in the areas of life that delivers unfettered enjoyment. I won’t attempt to bore you with waxing poetic about connecting to my family. While I do love them all dearly, you’re not here to learn about bonding with my girls or redefining a Date Night as playing Snipperclips or Enter the Gungeon with my wife after we pretended to leave the kids with a babysitter. There’s no cool story about how we snuck back in under cardboard boxes or up a trestle. The babysitter turning on Carmen Sandiego is all our kids needed as we walked back in the front door and up the stairs.
Games, as I have discussed ad nauseum, have always been an important factor in my life. They lead me to my chosen profession. Keep me sane and absorb a metric ton of my discretionary funding. It’s been surprisingly less discretionary funding during COVID. Really surprising. It’s not because my work has exploded, which I am lucky to be able to say. Simply put, I’ve applied the same honing of one’s psyche to my gaming lizard brain. I’ve made incredibly pointed purchases and continue to do so.
It took me awhile, but I was able to locate a Ring Fit Adventure after casual months of trying. I used to routinely pick up games on discount that I felt I’d get eventually. Those didn’t make the cut anymore because I am an idiot and I finally realized that if it was on sale once, it’ll be on sale again. The real savings was the sharpening steel I took to what I bought. I targeted the experiences, genres and franchises that brought me joy historically. Mario Kart Home Circuit was an obvious one, innovation and an easy experience to share with my family. Streets of Rage 4 brought back the joy of dumping quarters into an arcade machine. My co-op mate may be 200 miles away but technology solves most of that. Remnant: From the Ashes was free because Epic Games has too much money from Fortnite to bother with a reasonable business model. I can’t think of any real splurge. The closest would be the platforming joy of Yoshi’s Crafted World that I am still attempting to get my eldest into. She still wants to focus on competitive Snipperclips instead of moving on. At least she’s learning how to trash talk!
How have you altered your entertainment budget? You’ll notice I haven’t said anything about movie or even book purchases. Thank C’Thun for the amazing local library!