Gaming under the influence


I don’t consider myself much of a partier. I’m not the guy who has ten zillion friends and always know who is throwing down where. I’m not the moron who manages to blackout at every single party, without fail. I’m not the reveler who gets people to start doing keg stands. Correction, I’ve never ever done a keg stand.

However, this past weekend was my first in the history of college where I don’t have any Friday classes. So now every weekend for me is now a three day weekend. I didn’t kill myself this weekend by any means. But this weekend did include three birthdays, gin bucket, at least twenty games of beer pong, jungle juice, thumper, chandelier, and six beers during a whiffle ball game. I meet people whose names I can’t remember. I meet someone who I wish I remembered to ask for their number. Oh, well. And I’m almost definitely sure I committed myself to go see Andrew Bird and St. Vincent with one of my best friend’s girl friend.

Anyway, I wasn’t worried by any of that. Until this afternoon, when I booted up my file in Mass Effect and was astonished by what I saw. I was not at the point I had saved at, but much further ahead. Now keep this in mind, I had been playing Star Ocean for the past week. I cannot even remember putting the Mass Effect game disc in. I could only reach one conclusion; I had blacked out at least once this weekend and played through over an hour of Mass Effect.

To say that I was surprised by this doesn’t even begin to tap the ice berg. First off, I don’t play video games often while drunk. I am much worse at video games while inebriated; it’s like playing Goldeneye at age eight again and not being able to hit anything. This is also my first play through of Mass Effect on the difficult “Hardcore” setting. This is where enemies, who took one shot to kill in regular mode, now take six. Also, Mass Effect is an RPG Shooter, so every level up is met with selecting new abilities, so doing this drunk usually leaves itself open to peril. However, I was rather impressed with my blackout self, which had beat a good-sized chunk of the game that I was having trouble with. That and my drunken self had also made all of the level-up choices that I would have usually made.

But then I stepped back. I thought to myself, “What does this say about me?” Why is my partially unconscious choose a video game that I have already played over a hundred hours of? Am I a creature of habit? Then I just shrugged and played more Mass Effect. Thinking time well spent.


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