The Gamer Divide: one vs many

The Gamer Divide: one vs many

There are a lot of ways you could divide up the gamer community: casual and hardcore, single and multiplayer, action and relaxed or any other number of different and somewhat obvious splits.

However one way I often feel separated from other gamers, is that I tend to play only a handful of games a year (in my personal life, I have to play a fair few for work). I don't tend to follow new releases beyond work coverage, or if I do, I won't play them and certainly not the latest sequel or AAA titles. That's not because I'm so much a snob, but because I tend to prefer to find a game that has a lot of replay value and depth and stick to it.

And I'm a big fan of single player, but you knew that already.

I've spent much of this year replaying Mount and Blade Warband and Kerbal Space program and though there have been other games in there too – a bit of Hearthstone and Sunless Sea as of late – for the most part, I immerse myself in one title or another and don't tend to jump to buy a new AAA when its released.

This has its advantages of course, as it means I can come to the good AAAs a little later than everyone else and miss out on the bugs and server issues that seem to invariably come along with each big release and it means that I have a chance to get good at a game, instead of just jumping from one title to the next after I've blown through the 20 hour single player campaign.

It does however leave you feeling a bit bewildered when you finish your latest big project title. You come to the end of that epic campaign and realise you need a break and you can find yourself overwhelmed by the amount of games you haven't been playing.

So when you read headlines about the Destiny Loot Cave, or a new strategy in Titanfall, it actually takes some research to figure out what seems to be common knowledge in the gaming scene.

For others that do pick up these new games every couple of months, who do jump from game to game, I imagine it's a bit of an exhausting experience or one that's fraught with disappointment, as you're always looking for the next big thing.

I have friends who almost get more excited about a game before it's released, pouring over trailers and pre-release gameplay demos, sometimes even pre-ordering the game itself (no matter the amount of chastising they get) but after release, it's only a few weeks – if that – of play time before they're on to the next game.

Part of that I think comes from the endless promotion wheel that is the gaming industry, with constant PR thrust in our faces for this next game and that, and of course it's great to see the industry in such a healthy state that it has this many games for us to play, but it does feel impossible to keep up with sometimes.

And indeed, it is to some extent. With all of the giant games being released in the next few months, there's just no way you can enjoy all of those games' single player experiences AND get competitively good at the multiplayer. That might not be your bag of course, but it does sometimes feel a shame that there are gaming experiences you'll just never get to play. And it's about the only thing that makes me feel a bit hesitant about starting a lengthy campaign on something – what am I going to miss out on while I play this?

That was one of the main reasons I stopped playing League of Legends, there was just so many other games I could have been playing instead. That and all the people taking it too seriously.

What about you guys? Is there a particular camp you think you fall into? And are there ever games you wish you could play but just don't have time for?