I'm proud to have successfully completed my video game detox with only one little Pirates! hiccup along the way. Was it worthwhile? Hell yes! By taking a step back from video games for a month I've been able to both dissect and appreciate my relationship with them. I'm now armed with knowledge that'll help me pick the 'harmless fun' from the 'evil manipulations' that makes up too much of the game market minefield. And I've got a thirst for finding out more about manipulative game design, and how to spot and diffuse it.
I've booked in my first 'Game Night' with myself. Looks like it'll be Monday evening and I'll be playing a cool little Indie RPG called Halfway. No, it's not on my list from a few days ago. I noticed it in my Steam library and figured 'why not'. It's a linear, tactical SF RPG with no in-game purchases and a wonderfully limited amount of content. No risk of burning hours on pointless dopamine rushes. ;-)
Thanks for coming along for the ride and stay tuned as I'll be doing more articles about manipulative game design in the future!