Posted on 4th April 2020

A screenshot from the desert level of Nier Automata

It has been 41 days since I last updated this website. This should have been the 95th day of 100 Days of Gatsby, but I kinda fell into a rabbit hole and it's taken me some time to get out of it.

So, what happened? Two little things:

  • Relapse
  • Outbreak

Games aren't addictive, people are addicts

I've always had a neurological predisposition toward games that reward rapid pattern matching. I can't recall what it was in my childhood that started this, but in my adolescence it was fueled by games like Tetris, Columns and Bust a Move 2. Then as an adult, Bejeweled, then it's faster counterpart Bejeweled Blitz were my gateways to Puzzle Quest, then eventually Gems of War.

I managed to wean myself off Gems a long time ago, I was literally playing it in all my non-working waking hours, both on the Xbox and my iPhone. Games as a service tend to have no logical end, there's no credit sequence to put a mental nail in it to say you're done, the only limit is your level of obsession, and for a lot of people the depths of their wallet.

After the last time, I really don't know what compelled me to reinstall it, I suppose nothing I've played has scratched that same itch. After realising how much extra content and mechanical changes had been added since my last recovery, I was compelled to join a new guild and start back on that cycle of addictive behaviour. Unfortunately as a result, nearly all my free time in the last month or so has been focused on that one game, participation in all the daily/weekly events comes as a price - either money or time - and I chose the latter.

Then along came Rona

I am currently in the fortunate position of being able to work from home while this virus is ravaging the planet. The company I work for has many customers who are operating in the online retail sector, and although the lockdown is affecting bricks and mortar retailers in a bad way, online business is booming. So, for the last three weeks, and for the foreseeable future, I make my way each day into my home office, log onto the work vpn and start coding.

Being at home all day has made me appreciate just how much time I was not spending looking after the place, so I'm going to start weaning myself off Gems and get back to doing more chores, working on this site, learning more about Gatsby/React and in general adding some more diversity to my home life, seeing as I am now here 24 hours a day.

Of course, I will endeavour to return to the #100DaysOfGatsby challenges - I kept all the email prompts they sent me - so expect there to be a flurry of activity in the future. If you made it this far, thank you for reading and sorry for my absence, please stay safe wherever you are, wear a mask if you go out and don't forget to wash your hands!

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