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Orange Juice. 9 MM Handgun. Butter Knife.
July 13, 2009 4:45 PM   Subscribe

Living with First-Person Shooter Disease (SLYT)
posted by Cool Papa Bell (86 comments total) 29 users marked this as a favorite

 
Hilarious! This totally happened to me after my brief infatuation with Goldeneye.
posted by jtron at 4:48 PM on July 13, 2009


Ok, I think that probably could have been more funny, but as it was it was pretty fucking funny.
posted by kbanas at 4:49 PM on July 13, 2009


I guess I'll waste my 3000th comment (Superstar!) by providing a missing link to the Tetris Effect, the serious name for the funny phenomenon.

I get this from GTA-type games, myself. Even when on foot, I start picturing handbrake-assisted turns around even the most mundane parking lot, and mentally noting dumpsters, parking meters and street-signs as 'destructible'. Fish trucks and security vans make me smile.

I haven't whacked a hooker with a golf club yet, though. At least not with any witnesses around.
posted by rokusan at 4:53 PM on July 13, 2009 [3 favorites]


Getting stopped and having to jump up onto the curb really captured it.
posted by fatbird at 4:54 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


Hilarious. Cycling through inventory for the butter knife was great.
posted by Dr-Baa at 4:58 PM on July 13, 2009


Yeah. As a first person shooter connoisseur I wholly agree that there are times where I go into "shooter-vision" after long bouts with the ole' console... It scares me.
posted by Lacking Subtlety at 5:08 PM on July 13, 2009


The Tetris Effect is good to know about. I first experienced it when the first Tony Hawk game game out for Playstation. I used to walk around lspotting ramps up to buildings and plotting grind combos on telephone wires.
posted by Bookhouse at 5:10 PM on July 13, 2009 [2 favorites]


I used to get the Tetris effect with Dance Dance Revolution when I played it hours a day. Man. Arrows are everywhere.
posted by Nattie at 5:12 PM on July 13, 2009


Play Left 4 Dead or any zombies game long enough and you will start to look for good vantage points. That bridge is a high point, but there's too easy access, I could totally use that van with no windows to transport allies, those construction workers are toast come the apocalypse...
posted by misha at 5:14 PM on July 13, 2009


The kitchen bit is the best bit.

...9mm handgun...
posted by Artw at 5:17 PM on July 13, 2009 [3 favorites]


I get this from GTA-type games, myself. Even when on foot, I start picturing handbrake-assisted turns around even the most mundane parking lot, and mentally noting dumpsters, parking meters and street-signs as 'destructible'. Fish trucks and security vans make me smile.

I had something like that after way too much GTA3. My instant mental reaction whenever I saw a cool or unique vehicle in real life was "triangle button".
posted by Donnie VandenBos at 5:22 PM on July 13, 2009 [2 favorites]


This totally happened to me after my brief infatuation with Goldeneye.

I get this from GTA-type games, myself. Even when on foot, I start picturing handbrake-assisted turns around even the most mundane parking lot...

I used to walk around lspotting ramps up to buildings and plotting grind combos on telephone wires.

Play Left 4 Dead or any zombies game long enough and you will start to look for good vantage points.

My instant mental reaction whenever I saw a cool or unique vehicle in real life was "triangle button".


-------

Christ. Another I-want-people-on-MeFi-to-think-I-game-so-much-that-the-effects-bleed-into-my-real-life-now-lets-compare-our-fake-experiences thread.
posted by aheckler at 5:28 PM on July 13, 2009 [2 favorites]


The first time I played GTA3 was at a friends dorm in college. Not even really a close friend, and I only played for maybe a half-hour, but long enough to know how much stupid fun it was to just saunter up and jack a cop car in that game.

Leaving the dorm, the first car I saw was NYU campus security. It was literally the last second, when I was reaching out for the door handle, when my higher brain kicked in.
posted by Navelgazer at 5:30 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


Man, aheckler, you need to ease up on the video game that requires you to act like a total douche, it's bleeding into your everyday life.
posted by potch at 5:30 PM on July 13, 2009 [42 favorites]


Christ. Another I-want-people-on-MeFi-to-think-I-game-so-much-that-the-effects-bleed-into-my-real-life-now-lets-compare-our-fake-experiences thread.

Why on god's green earth would anyone make that shit up?
posted by gman at 5:32 PM on July 13, 2009 [5 favorites]


Goldeneye Glitch
Horse
Compilation
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 5:32 PM on July 13, 2009 [4 favorites]


I'm so so very happy that my comment came right on the heels of aheckler's.
posted by Navelgazer at 5:33 PM on July 13, 2009 [2 favorites]


Good stuff.

Tetris Effect hits me when I'm deep into a Splinter Cell game - I start getting weirdly nervous about light. When plotting my route through a hall or a room, I almost unconsciously avoid the best-lit parts. When I've been doing a lot of Battlefield of Call of Duty, I tend to reflexively glance up at the windows and balconies surrounding any wide-open area I'm about to cross.

It must be working. I've not once set off any alarms on my way to the kitchen or been sniped while crossing campus.
posted by EatTheWeak at 5:34 PM on July 13, 2009 [3 favorites]


Oh please, nobody ever tried to jack a cop car after playing GTA. If this story was true, all the "Moms against videogame violence" are correct, and FPS's should be banned. If you play a game and afterwards have trouble sorting TV from reality, I think the games should be outlawed right now.
posted by Keith Talent at 5:36 PM on July 13, 2009


aheckler - cuz it makes us sound so ... cool? Get back under your bridge, troll.
posted by EatTheWeak at 5:37 PM on July 13, 2009


Oh please, nobody ever tried to jack a cop car after playing GTA.

Here here!
posted by aheckler at 5:37 PM on July 13, 2009


A couple of years ago I was playing Total War so much I invaded France.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 5:41 PM on July 13, 2009 [27 favorites]


I thought the fella at the end who died like a Street Fighter character had the movement spot-on, right down to the hit-the-ground convulsion.
posted by EatTheWeak at 5:43 PM on July 13, 2009 [2 favorites]


Jumping up onto the kerb was priceless. I'm completelt talentless when it comes to FPSs, soclusily jumping around over tiny obstacles really nails the whole experience.

...Tetris effect...
Heh, it only happened to me once, when I spent most of a day replaying a level in a Matrix game with a sniper rifle. I ventured outside, saw something interesting about 100m away then got confused and annoyed that I wasn't able to zoom in on it. Only lasted a couple of seconds, but it really impressed on me the plasticity of the brain (zooming in now felt completely natural and instinctive) and the fact that I really needed to take a break and maybe spend some time in the real world.

The only computer games I play these days are on the wii. So far I'm managing to control the urges to flail my hands madly in the hope that Lego jedi will appear to do my bidding. It's a struggle, of course, but I get through one day at a time.
posted by metaBugs at 5:48 PM on July 13, 2009


During the height of Quake 2 and 3, my friend played so much that the game invaded his nightly dreams. His wife would hear him talk in his sleep saying such arcane things as "The rocket launcher is next to the car. "
posted by cazoo at 5:49 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


Christ. Another I-want-people-on-MeFi-to-think-I-game-so-much-that-the-effects-bleed-into-my-real-life-now-lets-compare-our-fake-experiences thread.

In fairness it doesn't take long. Play Pro Evo for an hour, then watch a real game of soccer, and the lack of red and yellow circles under the player with the ball will bother you. Also, you don't have special mind-reading powers.
posted by kersplunk at 5:53 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


A couple of years ago I was playing Total War so much I invaded France.

My brother played Civilization so much he was shocked to learn that the Chinese had developed writing without having first discovered the alphabet. I tried to explain that it is just a game, but he remains incredulous, and continues to insist that SETI has done a lot to boost scientific output.
posted by Sova at 5:54 PM on July 13, 2009 [9 favorites]


While crossing long, open spaces I always joke to myself "sniper fodder" and just this past Saturday, while enjoying a nice cold beer on a friends roof deck I remarked at how good of a location it would be for warding off the zombie hordes. Double so because of his supply of propane tanks.

Keith Talent and aheckler - If immersion is the holy grail of the gaming industry, I'd say they're doing a good job. Sucks for you if your brain and imagination can't allow you the pleasure of losing yourself in any of todays games so much that you daydream about it later during the more mundane parts of your day.
posted by cloax at 5:54 PM on July 13, 2009 [4 favorites]


You oughta see my Pong fingers.
posted by Ron Thanagar at 5:56 PM on July 13, 2009


There was some, I think, AskMe question that led to a long thread of these, but I'll say it again anyway:

Battlefield 2 did it to me. A couple of times, when I was driving, a helicopter flew into view and I damn near swerved off the road into the nearest cover.

For the (coughaheckler) record, I would not say that I "game."
posted by cmoj at 5:57 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'm not much of an FPS game player, or even a Tetris addict, but I, too, have experienced something like the Tetris effect.

From a subway train driving simulator.

See, the thing about subway signals, and train signals in general, is that they don't display a more restrictive indication as you approach them. If you see a green light, you can be sure it'll stay green until you've passed it. A yellow light might stay yellow or might turn green, but won't turn red until you pass it.

Being conditioned to expect that behavior from signals was not a good thing when I was driving. The first time I caught myself expecting that green traffic signals would stay green until I passed them, I decided to stop messing around with that simulator for good.

I guess my point is that it is rather easy to pick up certain simple conditioned reactions and behaviors from a video game, if you play it enough. Not complex high-level behaviors, just stuff that is one level above a true reflex. The kind of things you don't actually have to think about after a while, you just do them.

Everyone who has experienced the Tetris effect from an FPS may now feel better that someone has experienced it in an even nerdier fashion than you. I'm hoping someone will now post an anecdote about experiencing this effect from something even nerdier than a subway simulator (if there is such a thing), so I can feel better about myself as well.
posted by FishBike at 5:59 PM on July 13, 2009 [4 favorites]


Civilisation
Can't do what I want? Quick throw the switch from Democracy to Despotism
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 6:00 PM on July 13, 2009


Sometimes while at work, I feel that I should be fixing clients' computers by hitting them with a wrench. This may or may not be related to playing a lot of Team Fortress 2.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 6:07 PM on July 13, 2009 [4 favorites]


aheckler: Here here!

Right hear?
posted by gman at 6:09 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


I played Tetris non stop for about two years when I was a teenager. Now, I'm the one you call when you have to fit a whole mess of geometric shapes into a small space. I got so good, that fit a two bedroom townhouse's worth of stuff into a one room flat, with room to move. My bookshelves have not a spare whisper of space, my bathroom cabinet holds its precise volume in product.

Tetris will teach you to bend space to your will.
posted by Jilder at 6:09 PM on July 13, 2009 [19 favorites]


Oh please, nobody ever tried to jack a cop car after playing GTA.

Perhaps games aren't real enough for it to get that far yet. I can say for certain that several of my friends and I have commented on post-GTA reality detachment. Normally I'd see an ambulance or police car and think about stopping and doing some side missions for a while.

I'm also fairly certain that I'm one of the few people with a Diablo 2-based PTSD. I used a random playlist of tunes I liked at the time, and whenever I hear one on the radio I get Bloody Foothills flashbacks.
posted by graventy at 6:13 PM on July 13, 2009


cloax: Sucks for you if your brain and imagination can't allow you the pleasure of losing yourself in any of todays games so much that you daydream about it later during the more mundane parts of your day.

I'm not saying that people don't daydream about gaming once in a while, because they do. I just wanted to point out the elephant in the room: some of these stories are exaggerated to a point where they are no longer believable.

On preview: Nice catch, gman! :-P
posted by aheckler at 6:13 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


posted by gman

Why does that gman guy keep showing up? Why does he talk funny? Whose side is he on? What's in his briefcase? And what the hell does he have to do with this thread?
posted by rokusan at 6:18 PM on July 13, 2009 [7 favorites]


I was playing Dungeon Keeper 2 a while back, and in the game you have little imps who capture game squares by jumping up and down on them. I would have dreams that I couldn't wake up until my imps captured all the squares around my alarm clock to turn it off.

And while I was stationed in Iraq, I played a lot of Minesweeper. I would end up seeing mine number combinations at the end of paragraphs, among other places I can't remember at the moment.
posted by Evilspork at 6:22 PM on July 13, 2009


I don't play games at all because back in '93 when I bought my first Mac, I got the Tetris effect -- from Tetris.

I remember going to bed one night and literally seeing falling Tetris pieces, and trying to fit them into the puzzle, on the inside of my closed eyelids. It was scary enough that I pretty much blew games off for about 10 years. I recently went through a little infatuation with Bedazzled, but it didn't have the same effect. I don't go near FPS stuff -- I like my brain.
posted by Devils Rancher at 6:24 PM on July 13, 2009


Evilspork's dream anecdote reminded me...

Last year, when I still played WoW, I got terrible food poisoning. I couldn't keep any food down, and it was hard to sleep because my stomach acid was eating away at the lining of my stomach and I was having these horrible ulcerous pains. I managed to fall into this state of half sleep, where I was running around killing these wyverns with a sword. A single wyvern didn't take me but a few seconds to kill, but there was this huge open field of them and they kept respawning.

I thought that if I killed all the wyverns, I would wake up and I would feel better. I killed them for hours. What's kind of funny is I managed to get to where there were only two or three left, and I did wake up. And I did feel better.
posted by Nattie at 6:28 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


Crowded road, rush hour, just missed a turnoff to a faster way, why not do a u-turn, mount the curb, and drive back along it--> GTA (thank god I was the passenger)

Call of Duty 4 has made it impossible for me to not consider the level worthiness of any area I'm in, be it shopping malls, parks, or, say, downtown Tokyo. And, yeah, I've got most of the sniping positions around my house figured out.
posted by Ghidorah at 6:31 PM on July 13, 2009


I think the video itself is pretty funny, but really pays off with the Street Fighter gag at the end. I didn't feel like the guy actually had First Person Shooter's disease: he kept turning his head free of his gun hand, and for some strange reason his gun/hands bounced even when standing still or sitting. I expected to see some turning and accidentally slapping people.

The curb jump was golden.
posted by graventy at 6:46 PM on July 13, 2009


There's been interesting recent work about the body incorporating real tools into its mental map of itself near-instantaneously, the better to figure out how to best to navigate in real space. To me it seems a not-too-far leap that navigating an avatar in virtual space for lengthy periods of time could prompt a parallel readjustment.

Personally, on a somewhat related tangent, I sometimes find myself thinking in the cadence and style of a given writer after reading a particularly involving novel for a long period of time. But I'm a giant weirdo.
posted by Diablevert at 6:49 PM on July 13, 2009 [3 favorites]


I have a "tetris effect" example that doesn't come out of video games. I was up north doing brush clearing work, which was basically ten hours a day of cutting down small trees with a brush saw (for those unfamiliar with a brush saw, it looks like a weed whacker but is much beefier and has a saw blade instead of a string on the bottom -- you can cut down 4-inch diameter trees in one sweep, and much thicker ones with a bit more effort once you get good at it). After a couple of days of that, I was visualizing slicing anything vertical and narrow -- including people's necks. It was extremely disturbing.
posted by Emanuel at 6:50 PM on July 13, 2009 [2 favorites]


I just wanted to point out the elephant in the room: some of these stories are exaggerated to a point where they are no longer believable.

My story about equating the triangle button with cars is unbelievable? I guess I'm not seeing the part of the anecdote that pushes it into fantasy.
posted by Donnie VandenBos at 6:53 PM on July 13, 2009


This just reminded me...

I'm trying to track down a (pre-Youtube) video of dudes running around in a Petsmart parking lot in cardboard Tetris suits and fitting into things – of course I can't find it now. Does anyone remember this and know where I could find it?

TIA.
posted by avocet at 6:54 PM on July 13, 2009


OK this is a true story. I was playing Harvest Moon a lot lately, and one day I was out walking my dog and saw a distinctive plant sticking up from the grass in my neighbor's ditch, and I had the urge to pick it.
posted by not that girl at 6:57 PM on July 13, 2009


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=92I8k6BSry4
That it?
posted by tresbizzare at 7:02 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


Thanks for the Tetris Effect link, rokusan - never knew there was a name for it, or research/serious thinking about it. It's why I haven't played chess in half a lifetime - sick of making knight moves on every gridded surface (among other things).
posted by jtron at 7:08 PM on July 13, 2009


ah, Mega64 ... they warm my heart, they do .... nowadays, they're a big enough deal to score celebrity cameos!
posted by EatTheWeak at 7:22 PM on July 13, 2009 [2 favorites]


During the height of Quake 2 and 3, my friend played so much that the game invaded his nightly dreams. His wife would hear him talk in his sleep saying such arcane things as "The rocket launcher is next to the car. "

These stories (like my previous one) are true.

For about a year (about five years ago) when I was particularly obsessed with crossword puzzles, I dream about them nearly every night, just creating parts of puzzles in my head as I slept. (To my defense/credit, I'd been doing the NY Daily News Crosswords, and had taken to solving them in my head before filling in the blanks after covering the clues, so maybe this isn't quite so strange.)

But more than fifteen years before, when I was at the apex of my Mario Bros. obsession, I found it nearly impossible to daydream without picturing things in a side-scrolling fashion, where I couldn't help but land everything in a bottomless pit after one jump.

I know it sounds weird, but games, video or otherwise, can have a profound effect upon a certain mindset.
posted by Navelgazer at 7:28 PM on July 13, 2009


Personally, on a somewhat related tangent, I sometimes find myself thinking in the cadence and style of a given writer after reading a particularly involving novel for a long period of time. But I'm a giant weirdo.

Nope: I've often wondered in recent years whether I'm drawn to Aaron Sorkin's projects because he writes like I talk or if I just talk the way I do because of watching so much Sportsnight and West Wing.

Okay, fine We're both weirdos
posted by Navelgazer at 7:31 PM on July 13, 2009


GTA made me look at sidewalks as alternative roads when driving. Also, when I first started playing WOW (on a PVP server no less), I remember coming into a parking lot of a store and having a very strong urge to hang back and check things out before just parking by the door and walking in. I had been ganked way to much to fall for that again.
posted by UseyurBrain at 7:57 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


kind of a revrse "tetris effect" is why I consider GTA:Vice City to be the best game ever made.

Back in college, when I was prone to take lots of road trips, my friends and I coined the term "Miami Vice moment" for when you're driving and it starts raining, and it just happens to coincide with the music changing to something downtempo and introspective and everyone in the car stops talking.

Years later I'm playing Vice city, and on some mission that involves driving from one side of the map to the other, I hit a long straightaway, and it starts raining in the game, jut as the music switches to John Waite's "Missing You" and I completely zoned out, forgot about the mission, and spent the next 10 minutes just driving around while the game played moody 80's synthpop. And then i remembered. That was a Miami Vice moment. In a game based on Miami Vice. sweet.

The only time it's gone the other way, from videogame to real life, is the first time I played real ping pong after weeks of being hooked on Rocktar's Table tennis. My mind is thinking "curve the ball to the right" and my hands are replying "sorry...don't know how to do that, lets just work on keeping the damn thing on the table"
posted by billyfleetwood at 7:58 PM on July 13, 2009 [6 favorites]


not that girl - and I had the urge to pick it.

It happens a *lot* to people who played Morrowind or Oblivion, myself included.

metaBugs - good call on brain plasticity. Games are getting to be immersive enough to induce habituation outside of the gaming environment speaks well of gaming. On the other hand, this is one giant vector for population control.

I haven't, but has anyone played any of the America's Army games? Are there Mainland Chinese equivalents to this series?
posted by porpoise at 8:09 PM on July 13, 2009


Years ago, I had this from Flashback after about two days of nothing but. I went outside and felt a strange flinching reaction to any movement in the corner of my eye. I felt like I needed to draw down on anyone I saw when I entered a room. Went away after about an hour.

Similar feeling after I first bought GTA3, but mostly I just laughed to myself every time I saw a police car.

Also, I got stuck playing Link to the Past one night, and had a dream about how to get past the stuck part, and when I woke up, I tried it, and it worked. Awesome. I was probably 18.

When I was in art school, around the time of the Flashback flashbacks, I had a weird feeling, not video-game related, but being that I was in school for special effects, One night I had a strange and persistent feeling that everything around me was fake: That it was a giant model, and not the real thing at all.
I walked across the 10th Street Bridge, and the feeling was so intense: the sidewalk was bluefoam with a heavy coat of FleckStone; the steel structure of the bridge, whose suspension is flat plates of metal rather than cables, was painted plexiglass; the view of the city was a matte painting, with little holes scraped in the paint for building lights to shine through. "But wait! Some of the lights, like the cars' headlights, are moving!" "Oh, that," I said to myself. "There's a projector underneath the bridge, that's all."
It was one of the most intensely weird sensory experiences I've had, ever.
posted by Mister Moofoo at 8:19 PM on July 13, 2009


not that girl: "OK this is a true story. I was playing Harvest Moon a lot lately, and one day I was out walking my dog and saw a distinctive plant sticking up from the grass in my neighbor's ditch, and I had the urge to pick it."

On a similar note, I've been playing through Oblivion lately and consequently seem to be coming across a lot of real life plants that look like Nirnroot. Sometimes it takes a lot of willpower not to take them.
posted by mindless progress at 8:38 PM on July 13, 2009 [2 favorites]


Sometimes it takes a lot of willpower not to take them.

You just need to add more to that stat when you level up.

Wait... what?
posted by the other side at 8:40 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


> I'm also fairly certain that I'm one of the few people with a Diablo 2-based PTSD. I used a random playlist of tunes I liked at the time, and whenever I hear one on the radio I get Bloody Foothills flashbacks

Sarah McLachlan's Rarities, B-Sides & Other Stuff is that album for Diablo I for me. Over and over and over again--a tape on an auto-reversing player.
posted by Decimask at 9:23 PM on July 13, 2009


See also: Dave Chapelle goes to work GTA-style.
posted by milquetoast at 9:25 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


...They don't use whiffle balls for motion capture, do they?
posted by Kalthare at 10:25 PM on July 13, 2009


I was playing a lot of Call of Duty 4 about a year ago. One day, when walking to the shops for lunch, someone on the building site opposite my office dropped a scaffolding clamp as I walked past. The metallic sound it made as it hit the pavement sounded exactly like the 'tinkle-clunk' sound you hear when a grenade is thrown at you in CoD 4.

I spun around a quarter turn, looking for the grenade indicator in my vision so I'd know which direction to move to avoid the grenade, realised what I was doing, span back around and walked away smartly, sniggering to myself. I must have looked totally nuts.
posted by Happy Dave at 10:36 PM on July 13, 2009 [3 favorites]


I bet I can wedge another comment in here, too.
posted by Jilder at 10:36 PM on July 13, 2009 [3 favorites]


A friend of mine had the odd urge to veer into oncoming traffic after playing too much Burnout.

I like to walk to get places.
posted by Stunt at 10:37 PM on July 13, 2009


I actually had a Tetris effect moment with Pokemon, of all things. I was in high school and had just bought the first game (Blue, for the record). I played it for about ten hours straight that night. The next day, I ended up having to go to the local college library for a research project for AP Chemistry. As I was walking along, a pretty blue butterfly fluttered past and my first thought was, "Ooh, I haven't seen one of those before! Better catch it!" I was briefly confused that a Pokeball did not fling out from my field of vision to snare the thing. And the first explanation my mind came up with was, "I guess it's not as weak as it looks. Maybe I should attack it first."

Later, in college (my peak Magic: The Gathering phase), I tried to use a Healing Salve to prevent three damage from the alarm clock going off. In my defense, at that point I was just waking up and thus potentially half-dreaming, but still...
posted by Scattercat at 10:38 PM on July 13, 2009


Happy Dave - "tinkle clunk" = most terrifying noise.
posted by EatTheWeak at 10:50 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


Sometimes I will look at an email address after playing hours of nethack and notice I am holding my breath and sweating. Or I will get suspicious about food that sits on the table for a few minutes before I eat it. Also, the better I get at nethack the better I am at making sure I have everything I need when I leave my house.
posted by idiopath at 11:34 PM on July 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


This brings back memories from 15 years ago at high school where we went around corridors with a friend, FPS style, blowing up classmates and teachers. We had a scoring system and kept count for the day.

There may have been some game-playing influence in that.

Also, I played the whole range of Sim games, but nothing ever came of that - I still cannot build a moon base, or manage an ant colony.
posted by Laotic at 12:48 AM on July 14, 2009


this reminds a wee bit of that old wk campaign for sega called beta 7.
posted by krautland at 2:51 AM on July 14, 2009


I've never tried to shoot barrels of toxic waste until they explode next to zombies in every day life, but I have physically looked over my shoulder to see if I have enough space behind me before making a running jump in Doom.
posted by crataegus at 3:06 AM on July 14, 2009


I'm a little surprised that no one has mentioned Cliff Racers.
posted by palimpsest at 4:19 AM on July 14, 2009


During junior high, I used to play a lot of gold box D&D games, and I distinctly remember the bell ringing to signal the last class of the day on a Friday, and I thought to myself "OK, I need to save here so I can come back" with the correct keystrokes coming to mind. Freaked me out a bit, then bummed me out that I couldn't actually do that...
posted by This Guy at 5:57 AM on July 14, 2009


On two seperate occasions - once after a night of playing Hitman 2, another after a night of Vampire Bloodlines - I took a walk to my local 7/11 in the pre-dawn hours and realised that for a few blocks I thought I was 'in stealth mode'.
posted by sleep_walker at 6:14 AM on July 14, 2009 [2 favorites]


On of the potentially worst days of my life....the day an old lady in a walker proceeded to cross the street in front of me after I had spent the previous 5 hours playing Carmageddon...my brain seriously had a double-take on the decision process to hit the brakes, and thankfully it chose wisely!
posted by samsara at 6:16 AM on July 14, 2009


Katamari Damacy always made me feel a little weird. I know there's a joke about wanting to run into stuff with your car after playing it, but it is definitely true. It's also bad to play other video games after Katamari since you typically want to avoid hitting things in games rather than run straight into them.

I've played a lot of PC games that, when I spend too much time on them, give me weird dreams and waking sensations. Usually I think the hotkeys are there, floating in space in front of me, and all I have to do is press them to, say, shoot a fireball. In dreams it's cool, but in waking life it's just a tease.
posted by six-or-six-thirty at 6:46 AM on July 14, 2009


The Tetris effect a-la George Costanza (Seinfeld)
posted by bitteroldman at 7:41 AM on July 14, 2009


There was a time when playing FarCry helped me avoid an arrest.

"From a subway train driving simulator."

LINJK PLS!@!

You guys are just lucky I never got into Defcon.
posted by Eideteker at 9:54 AM on July 14, 2009


"From a subway train driving simulator."

LINJK PLS!@!


Does that say "link please"? Well, OK, it was the NXSYS Subway Simulator, which is even geekier than you might imagine. The actual subway driving is only incidental to the main purpose of the simulator, which is to define tracks, switches, and signals, and then program all the relay logic to simulate a complete interlocking.
posted by FishBike at 9:59 AM on July 14, 2009 [3 favorites]


Personally, on a somewhat related tangent, I sometimes find myself thinking in the cadence and style of a given writer after reading a particularly involving novel for a long period of time. But I'm a giant weirdo.

I totally do this.

This is really just about how you view your world. If you are a rock climber, all of a sudden buildings become a lot more interesting. Skateboarder? Sidewalks and rails FTW. BJJ fighter? 'Man, that guys collar looks strong enough for a baseball choke.'

Your senses take in too much information and you have to parse out what is really relevant. When you are engaged in a particular activity that values certain information over others, your brain adapts by adjusting your filters. Then it just takes some time to adjust them back to normal after you quit the activity.
posted by jopreacher at 11:03 AM on July 14, 2009 [3 favorites]


"Did you ever have a job that you hated and worked real hard at? A long, hard day of work. Finally you get to go home, get in bed, close your eyes and immediately you wake up and realize... that the whole day at work had been a dream. It's bad enough that you sell your waking life for minimum wage, but now they get your dreams for free. "
posted by daHIFI at 11:33 AM on July 14, 2009


I love Waking Life. =D
posted by Eideteker at 12:56 PM on July 14, 2009


I've spent a lot of compressed time on some games and rarely had this happen, maybe because my fave games don't translate well into real life (Civ, etc.).

This, though, is right on:

This is really just about how you view your world. If you are a rock climber, all of a sudden buildings become a lot more interesting. Skateboarder? Sidewalks and rails FTW. BJJ fighter? 'Man, that guys collar looks strong enough for a baseball choke.'

After learning to snowboard, I couldn't bus to school without imagining carving up every snowbank beside the road. It was automatic.

and it starts raining in the game, jut as the music switches to John Waite's "Missing You" and I completely zoned out, forgot about the mission, and spent the next 10 minutes just driving around while the game played moody 80's synthpop.

I must have spent hours in Vice City just driving around in the rain, kinda a version of as a teen (IRL) just getting home to your street and a great song comes on the radio and you can't just park and walk away so you detour for a few more blocks...

Having experienced the Tetris Effect (great name; remember people discussing it back when the stimulus for conversation actually was Tetris) in terms of sensory repetition after play, but not so much the twitch-reaction thing, I will say that City of Heroes/Villains produces the most engrossing daydreams of any video game I've experienced. (for one thing, flying becomes second nature) It's almost worth it just for that.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 3:26 PM on July 14, 2009


When I first discovered Kingdom of Loathing I got pretty excited about cocktailcrafting (making drinks in-game for various benefits). One of the best cocktailcrafting items you can have is a reusable ingredient called the Tiny Plastic Sword. It's really really expensive and hard to find. One day I was waiting at a bus stop and I noticed an advertisement with a giant martini glass, and in it, larger than life, was... a tiny plastic sword! I'd finally found one! Hooray!! ...wait a minute, something's not right here.
Then I was sad.
posted by closetphilosopher at 4:42 PM on July 14, 2009 [2 favorites]


In GTA, I used to love to hit motorcycles from behind and watch the rider go flying. But in real life, the height and distance the rider flies are always underwhelming.
posted by straight at 10:21 AM on July 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Mine was from WoW, trying to tap the wheel of my car to make my mount jump as I was driving.
posted by Lizc at 7:21 PM on July 17, 2009


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