Okay, so initially I was going to wait until Christmas to pick up my Playstation 4.   But the impulses got the better of me and I went and bought a Star Wars Battlefront bundle.  (along with Fallout 4; currently 30+ hours in)

I’ll admit, it was a gamble getting it before the holidays.  My wife was fairly pissed for about a week.

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But, to be honest, I felt that it was clearly known that I wanted it and had earned the money out of my own paycheck; that as an adult, I can buy it whenever I liked.  Christmas can be magical for my lady and my daughter, honestly I could’ve cared less when it came to being such a large and obvious gift.

Simply put, no matter how I word this, it will come out wrong for many others, so what is done, is done.

I’d love to elaborate on my overall experience, but this time, I have a much more serious message to get across.  Which is, to discuss gaming in serious relationships, where your other half doesn’t play games.  How to handle serious relationships when you; the hardcore gamer is having conflicts with your significant other about your habits.

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After reading quite a posts of Facebook, Twitter and many other social media hubs about how Fallout 4 is seriously messing up good relationships.  Some are going to the extent of breaking ups to straight up just breaking the game disc itself.

What many gamers don’t realize is… that YOU CAN PUT A GAME DOWN AT ANYTIME.  (yes, even online)

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Which brings me to rule # 1

FAMILY COMES FIRST!-The excitement and need to tear into a new game or to play are being deprived of any games in days or hours, is a tough urge to fight.  It’s easy to pull yourself away from the temptation to play before you start.

But like the mafia…once your in, your in.  We get engrossed in the gameplay, the experience and the interactions from online parties and hate being interrupted when shit is getting good.

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Honestly, though it doesn’t replace the memories we have in real life.  Going out, sharing quality time with those we care for… IS PRECIOUS!

These times will go away, if ignored.  Games can be replayed endlessly and so long as you continue to own your games, they will be there.  It will save you a headache and maybe an unwanted talk about how you spend too much time playing games.

The online community can wait, IF THEY ARE YOUR FRIENDS they will understand, when your going to spend time with the people you love most.

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Rule # 2  PLAY SMART, SPACE IT OUT!  Those of us, that are married or have kids know, that a binge gaming session just doesn’t happen.  Sometimes, you may get the family out of the house for some odd reason.  Only then, do you get an opportunity to play an 8-hour session in a t-shirt and pajama pants.  In remedy to this, I recommend playing in hourly or less sessions.   Sure it will keep you less interested in the story, especially if its an RPG.

KEEP NOTES OF THE STORY!  What I do is, I use Google Docs and make a word document and jot down the story and where I left off from, so I don’t get lost.  Fortunately, some games do this for you in some fashion, so you don’t have to; if not, you’ve got this.  Overall, just remember pick your times wisely.

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Rule # 3  JUST BECAUSE YOU HAVE ALONE TIME, DOESN’T MEAN THERE AREN’T RESPONSIBILITIES

This is fairly simple, as it covers some real common sense things, such as housework, bills and daily bullshit.  If you said your going to do something, get that shit done and out of the way.  Bills, pay em and get it over with.  Keep the house tidy, make sure you feed your pets.  Change your oil and fill up your gas tank.  SOME PRETTY COMMON SENSE SHIT!  But you would be surprised, when you get sucked into a game and time flies, then DAMN…you may have a problem.

Rule #4  TALK IT OUT!!

We all should know by now, that communication is GOLDEN in family and relationships.  If you have someone that you love that isn’t into gaming, perhaps you may want to talk about sharing activities.  Obviously, you may have to be the one who has to put the first step forward.  Talk about getting engaged in the activities they like to do.  Once that is communicated and established for a fair amount of time, you may be able to promote the idea of sharing your gaming experiences.

You may not get a second player, but you may get someone who will watch the game with you or something to that extent.  In my case, my lady will sit on the couch and will watch and make funny comments or observations about a game.  As they say in the fine print on those infomercials, “Results may vary”

Rule #5  NEVER PLAY DEFENSIVE!

The person you care about may be tolerant of how much you game, but most likely your gonna butt heads on how much time is spent.  Which is where this final rule comes in.

Let’s be real, GAMING IS A HOBBY, and it should be treated that way. Express to him or her that it’s YOUR HOBBY and that you would like to have some time to spend on it, while they are home or in the room your playing in.  If they don’t at least respect or acknowledge that, they aren’t respecting you.

Never justify yourself when you’ve spending way too much time in your gaming sessions with them.  Stop playing… and listen to their concerns too.  They may be valid; just remember to communicate and work something out that works for both of you and the family.

With that, I wish everyone the best of results, play smart and have fun!!

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