Geek Etiquette: Do You Game Too Much?

The Geeky Hostess is gonna help you get your manners on! Each Monday, we’ll focus on a topic of etiquette. We’ll take a look at the classic rules (using Emily Post as a guide), and then evaluate the rules for our daily lives, creating a guide to “Geek Etiquette.” Have an etiquette question or topic suggestion? Email!


The release of Mass Effect 3 this past week has prompted tons of “you won’t see me for a week” comments on social networks. It’s always fun to hole up and play a game straight through if you can, but does it effect your relationships with your partner, friends, or family? What about other online obsessions? Do you spend hours on reddit or pinterest every night?

I asked all of you on Twitter to let me know how you play video games–do you look for moderation or play it in one sitting? Do you go to the extents of profligating on high-end stuff like GamingRig dell u2718q monitors and fancy mice? Most folks responded that they want to play for as long as possible. If this is just an occasional thing (when new games come out or you’re having a LAN party) those living with you should be able to support you. You’ve been looking forward to this moment, and as long as you let people know what’s about to happen, you should be ok. Majin72 says: “I give them fair warning that I’m going into straight gamer mode. Any complaints will be dutifully ignored.” When Mr. Geek got Skyrim, I was prepared for him to get sucked in, and I let him spend a Saturday playing the game. I made him a nice meal that was easy for him to eat while gaming, and checked up on him to see if he needed any snacks/beverages throughout the day. By letting him spend the day gaming, he was able to see that I was supportive, he was able to get a lot of gaming out of his system, and I was able to have a quiet day to myself to run errands.

Of course, if your partner or friend acts like this every day and begins avoiding obligations or activities IRL to play games, you may need to chat with them and encourage them to set up a schedule for their gaming. Or you can check out the blog My Partner is a Gamer and learn a bit about the games they’re playing (and commiserate with other gamer widows/widowers).

But what if everyone in the house wants to play the hot new game, and you only have one console, desktop, or sweet monitor? Scheduling time is a must. It can be as casual as staggering things you need to do that day so one of you can be on the system/computer while the other one’s gone, or as official as a calendar set out with hours marked off for each person. OhAmy alternates nights when she has to share a game. The beauty of playing the same game with others is you can talk about the story, the strategy, and how things are going with someone who’s going through the same thing. I’d even encourage the non-gamers in the house to check out the game that’s got your partner so enthralled, maybe you’ll surprise yourself and enjoy it!

Are you guilty of spending too much time gaming or online? How do you keep your relationships strong? Let us know in the comments!

One Comment

  1. The only issues that crop up with I and my gamer man is when he’s playing one game obsessively and I want him to play another game with me obsessively. I’m not much on shooters or horror games, but he and his guy friends love them. So when headphones on bro-mode cuts in to MMO time.

    We share gaming consoles, but our schedules are different enough that we can share. Weekends when there’s a hot new game to play though are problematic 😛

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