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Eight Signs That Mean It's Time To Put Down The Mouse/Pad

We've all been there; you know, when a certain game becomes our life and when life becomes that game. Here's eight little helpful hints to help you recognise when it's time to take a break.

1: You can't recall what day it is.
You've been playing this game non-stop for... you're not sure how long, and the days have merged into one long undefinable period of time. The curtains have probably not been opened for ages and you are also unsure what time of day it starts to get dark. Be prepared for some photosensitivity and remind yourself what the sun looks like.

2: You're stuck.
One of the most common 'take a break' indicators. It may sound somewhat like this: "For F**** sake, this stupid game is obviously broken", or "There's so many bugs in this it's just impossible to get anywhere". If you feel the hulk rage growing within and are likely to throw things across the room, either turn down the difficulty or, on second thought, turn it off for a while.

3: You're bored.
You're hanging around the auction house for hours, achievement hunting because there's nothing to do, or trying different hairstyles or fashion choices for your toon. If any of these sound familiar, you're likely stuck in a rut in an MMO and logging on purely to fill the time. Log off, shake it up and try something new. Try and think of something better to do than fishing in Ironforge for six hours a day.

4: You're dreaming about the game whenever you sleep.
This one can manifest in a couple of ways. You might be having dreams where you're just in the game universe, rambling around, enjoying life etc. Maybe in your dreams you are actually your toon, sniping monsters and doing quests. The worst though, and a sure sign you need to stop playing is if, in the dream, you are sitting at the computer/by your console just playing the game. At this point you probably need to rethink what occurs in your waking hours.

5: You try to push-to-talk in real life.
Picture this. You're having a five minute break to dash to the loo and in this time someone tries to talk to you, you know, face-to-face. You then attempt to push a button on your keyboard in order to reply. Sound familiar? Turn off Teamspeak/Ventrilo and put down the headset, speaking is an automatic response remember?

6: You put off something important for "ten more minutes".
You've been desperate for a wee for half an hour and you're about to burst. Maybe you're so hungry you can feel your stomach starting to eat itself, or worse you're so pumped up on caffeine you forgot what not shaking feels like. Sure the game is epic, but it will still be there later, at least take a break to maintain, you know, normal life stuff.

7: You throw a hissy fit over something in-game.
You took a break (finally) for some sleep and overslept, missing a raid and no one text you to wake you up. The anger is overwhelming and you log on to rage at your guildies for not fulfilling their responsibility as alarm clocks to notify you. Take a deep breath and calm down dear, it's only one raid, not the be-all and end-all. (I have definitely never done this. Honest).

8: You try to do something from in the game, out of the game.
This one is pretty similar to the push-to-talk one but more generalised. Things like trying to right-click an object to interact with it in reality, or sticking to the shadows to avoid detection, or even trying to look at your non existant mini-map to work out where you are, if you've done it, you know what I'm talking about. Just if you start leaping off buildings into haystacks or hiding from the police by sitting on benches between people then you may need to do more than stop playing.

Emseypenguin | 24th April, 2013
Kaostic's picture
All of the above.

I've also stopped after I've forgotten to eat/drink/sleep. Oh dear.
Misterwoot's picture
BWAHAHAHA! This was me 5 years ago!

The "joys" of hardcore endgame in vanilla WoW.
Emseypenguin's picture
Lol, I think we've all done far too many of these!
Cronos's picture
Number of years ago I took a break from Counter-Strike after having a few dreams where I was running around as a CT on cs_office.
Kaostic's picture
I have dreams of games all the times. I'm not sure if the dreams are me playing it or becoming the characters within.
Stopped playing WoW and MMORPG's in general for similar reasons Em. I've never been a completionist but it seemed easier to keep playing the same game that I had advanced in and knew tonnes about. Eventually (as I recall, when I was running laps around Dalaran waiting for 5v5 arena to start) I decided enough was enough, haven't played Wow since.

I did have a look at that Secret World game, but with IRL obligations looming all the time it seems silly to dedicate myself to one game for all my free time. Besides, MMORPGs become less about the gameplay, more about becoming a cog in a 40-man raid machine/battleground.
FoxyStoat's picture
I'm still hitting all 8 of these on a daily basis either through WoW or Bioshock..

Gotta love being a gamer.
Fat Tony's picture
I have game dreams a lot. Try playing a bullet hell game and *not* dreaming in dots!
Platinum's picture
Wait this is real life?
Kaostic's picture
Or is it just fantasy?
Platinum's picture
Caught in a landslide
Kaostic's picture
No escape from reality...
Fat Tony's picture
Never gonna give you up
Fat Tony's picture
haha see i reference rick astley i am so young and hip
Fat Tony's picture
You owe me a new PC monitor.

I didn't spit anything on it or anything, I'd just like a new one please.
Kaostic's picture
Originally Posted by Fat Tony View Post
I didn't spit anything on it or anything, I'd just like a new one please.
Well, if that doesn't deserve rep, I don't know what does.

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