Final Fantasy: My Gateway Drug

4 Aug

I want to quit my job and play Final Fantasy all day.

It’s been a growing concern ever since Dave started playing the most recent installment of the game series.  Not so much because I’m an avid Final Fantasy fan (I’ve played several, but not all and thus wouldn’t dare starting a geek war with anyone), but because I actually want to play World of Warcraft.

It’s been a long time since I’ve found something to fill the void of that gloriously epic massive multiplayer online game that zapped the life out of me, added 15 pounds, took all my money, and catapulted me into a world of eternal bliss not many years ago.   Of course, I wasn’t achieving anything “real”.  My only achievements were chronicled in the quests I completed while roaming the world of Azeroth.  My real life achievements were nill.

It probably had something to do with my schedule at the time.  It went something like wake up, sit at computer and play, get hungry, order pizza, eat, get sleepy, go to bed.  Somehow I managed to make those small tasks last me an entire day – and sometimes all night.  

It’s surprising how long one can live off leftover pizza if rationed appropriately.

And though it wasn’t a particularly proud existence, I could have happily carried on in my nerd cave until the end of time without caring much for the consequences.  Unfortunately, World of Warcraft costs money and sitting in my bedroom unshowered for days on end didn’t pay well.  Sooner or later I needed money and realized that listing “raid leader” and “super epic elf hunter” on my resume wasn’t exactly setting myself up for success.  So I swore off the game and vowed never to return.

Until less than a year later.

But the second time I quit, I quit hardcore.  I uninstalled the program from my computer hoping that the ridiculously long installation process would be a deterrent for future relapses.  And in a startling blow to my inner desires, Responsible Jackie got a laptop that isn’t capable of supporting the game’s graphics.  So if I ever want to start up again, I have to buy a whole new computer.

Enter Final Fantasy.

Though FF could never fill the void that WoW has left in my soul, it does offer a decent and safe alternative.  Though it will also propel me into months of slavery to a machine and stats, it is far healthier than WoW because it 1) has an ending and 2) isn’t online.  It also doesn’t punish the player for not achieving things in a certain amount of time or reward them frequently with enormously epic gear.  But the gameplay is pretty much the same.  I get to use magic and I get to kill things.

I also have Dave to hold me accountable, who is fully aware of my sordid past and is prepared to leave me should it resurface.

I have yet to pick up a controller and try my hand at Final Fantasy 13, but I have been seriously letting the idea brew.  I keep getting glimpses of release from reality and true relaxation juxtaposed against images of my fat, greasy, college shut-in self.   Will picking up the controller catapult me into a life without a job, without Dave, and without sunlight?  If I stop posting, you’ll know why.

Tell the rescue team to check under the pile of pizza boxes for a pale, smelly non-contributor. 


12 Responses to “Final Fantasy: My Gateway Drug”

  1. Ro August 4, 2011 at 9:30 am #

    You wonderful, darling freak, you.
    My slow decline into the abyss was Dragon Age. ::sigh:: It was so lovely. We didn’t play it online (I don’t even know if you can?), but the game was so insanely long that I probably could’ve spent my entire life playing it. And I more or less was for a few months.
    Then, DISASTER struck! My boyfriend’s computer crashed and we lost everything. EVERYTHING. Just as I was helping the dwarves and fighting giant spiders. Once things got up and running again there was no point. I wasn’t about to invest another 18,597,235 hours just to CATCH UP to where I was when all was lost. I had to stop cold turkey.
    We also lost our entire SIMS3 family. Our children, Bruce and Jocelyn- gone. Our beautiful custom house by a waterfall- erased. Most depressing ever. We lost our CHILDREN, for crying out loud (thanksfully, their memories are preserved on my facebook page).
    …Point being- I understand your pain. To quit something cold turkey that you’ve invested so much time in is difficult. For what it’s worth, I’ll still love you if you return to WoW. I haven’t played WoW or FF, but I’ve heard good things about both. I’m okay with your geeky tendencies. I won’t think less of you, I promise.


    • Jackie August 10, 2011 at 12:39 am #

      Oh man. I kind of want to send you a trial of WoW just to see what happens. …


  2. Jessica August 4, 2011 at 10:25 am #

    Resist! As a on and off again WoW widow (wife of WoW husband, although you probably know that), I cry RESIST! He finally quit WoW a few months ago as it was one of the few flexibilities in our budget that we could cut back on. And I was so PROUD of him for a few weeks. Until one of his gaming friends turned him on to some other online game that doesn’t require a subscription. I’ve lost him again to the epic battles, magic, slaying, looting, and so forth. I don’t even know the name of this one but I don’t care. They are all the same. Life sucking, soul leeching, never ending games. I couldn’t believe how much more involved in other life actitives he became when we was off the games for a few weeks. Now, we’re back to him spending all his time on the stupid computer and all his other hobbies and projects waste away – like the 26 ft sailboat in our garage that we are supposed to be restoring but that is becoming covered in cobwebs (literally) instead. HA!


    • Jackie August 10, 2011 at 12:38 am #

      WoW over a sailboat? My (mostly) recovered self is sad, but my inkling of WoW joy totally understands. It’s terrible, isn’t it? There are literally people who have neglected their children to the point of DEATH because of WoW. It is a serious poison.

      …and a tasty one.


  3. pegoleg August 4, 2011 at 10:38 am #

    Don’t do it Jackie! You hit it right with the gateway drug analogy. Just keep repeating “It’s not real, it’s not real”. We all know people who are sucked into these made-up worlds to the exclusion of real life, and it’s a sad, pitiful thing.

    Just say no.


    • Jackie August 10, 2011 at 12:37 am #

      *reading over and over, breathing deeply* thanks, Peg.


  4. Jules August 4, 2011 at 12:48 pm #

    I should have sold my druid when it was worth something. *sigh* If I only knew that I wouldn’t return. *sigh* I miss WoW….more specifically…I miss the shenanigans with my “friends”.


    • Jackie August 10, 2011 at 12:37 am #

      oh man. Jules, I should have sniffed you out for a WoW player. And a druid at that! AAhaha. Now the question is… were you alliance or horde?


  5. Cody Musser August 4, 2011 at 4:32 pm #

    I still have occasional moments of consideration in which I decide… damn, I want to play some World of Warcraft right now. I don’t, but I feel you.

    Final Fantasy’s not much of a gateway drug though. You’ll be alright. The latest FInal Fantasy is kinda bad, so you’ll throw in 20 hours and then give up out of lack of joy. Case closed.

    Guild Wars 2 (FREE TO PLAY, BRO) and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. Those are dangerous though. Serious, career-breaking, social life wrecking dangerous.


    • Jackie August 10, 2011 at 12:36 am #

      Why would you even mention them?! WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT?!


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