I’m a gamer. I’ve always been a gamer. I expect some day to keel over dead, a controller clutched firmly in my gnarled fingers, trying to finish one last level, quest, or gather that last bit of experience. A macabre visual perhaps, but I want to be clear gaming is part of my life and isn’t going away any time soon.
About a year ago, I received a hand-me-down iPhone. It’s a couple of models old, and there’s no phone plan attached to it, so it’s a glorified portable gaming machine to me, and that’s how I’ve always treated it. When I go out the door, the last minute bag check includes phone, keys, bus pass, 3DS, and iPhone. Off I go out into the big wide world.
A friend recently compiled a report for university which broke down each of their gamers’ habits into not just how much they played, but how much of WHAT they played. It’s no surprise I was in the highest saturation category (40 hours or more per week) but what startled me is realizing I play around 5-7 hours per week of iOS games. I got curious and did some quick math: though I essentially wasn’t playing any iPhone games in May, June, or July, by October 2012 I’d clocked approximately 125 hours into iOS games.
I literally had to lift my hands from the keyboard and stare at that figure. 120+?! SERIOUSLY?! It pales in comparison to the time I’ve spent playing MMOs (300ish). Still….did I really play one hundred plus hours of PHONE GAMES? I flipped back to my list of 2012 completed games to start counting.
- I finished 10000000 with a final score of over 14 million. It took me about 8 hours.
- Completed all the current Backyard Bounce levels with nearly all 3 stars. That took me at least 5 hours.
- I conquered Dungeon Village twice. That’s ten hours between the two, 6 and 4.
- Kairosoft quickly became a favourite developer of mine, and I finished Pocket Story League twice. That’s also ten hours between the two, 6 and 4.
- I replayed Plants vs Zombies on an iPad. That’s 4-6 hours.
- Despite the fact I finished it on both DS and 360, I played through Puzzle Quest. IT’S A GOOD GAME, OKAY? 15 hours.
- I slapped down Saturday Morning RPG: Episode 1 a couple of times, 4 hours.
- Tri-ducking almost every currently available level in Where’s My Water took about 7 hours. I didn’t find Where’s My Perry as fun, so I quit after less than 2 hours.
- Ribbited over all 60 levels in Zuma’s Revenge, which took perhaps 5 hours. While I failed some of the normal levels 2 times at most, I didn’t fail on any boss levels. Woo!
- I also shot off a quick completion of Peggle, which took about 2 hours.
- Puzzle Craft, a Match 3 / Builder hybrid took about 8 hours.
That’s about 70 hours. This doesn’t even count the time I’ve sunk into Fairway Golf (get it, cause like, golf…), Tiny Tower, Pocket Planes, Dragonvale, Draw Something, and my current game, Flow Free — which I’ve sunk a good 10 hours into (I’ve completed over 1000 of the 1300 pipe puzzles).
I’m a gamer. But now I’m also a “casual gamer.” Can I be a hardcore casual gamer? I’m still thinking about it, but I think we may see a new breed of gamers rising in a very short period of time.