When do you decide you're "done" with a game?


It’s usually when I complete the story. I’m not a big into 100% games anywhere, unless in a rare occassion it’s worth it. In some even rare instances, I won’t be done with a game after I complete it, I think after completing Doom and God of War, I went straight back into a second playthrough on a harder difficulty setting. This is where New Game plus is greatly appreciated.

Most frequently it’s when I become bored with a game. It’s not uncommon for me to move on to the next game.

Most recently however, after getting to the end of the main campaign of RDR2, it’s real hard to go back for the epilogue and just pick it up again. I almost just want to start again and mop everything up properly as that character.

The game I’ll never be done with is Threes. I’ve had it on my phone for about 5 years now. Never came close to beating it. I think if I do beat it one of these days I may be done with video games for life…


For most games, I’m done once I’ve seen all the narrative- and/or scripted mission-based content. So for something like a JUST CAUSE or BATMAN: ARKHAM that has challenges and the like, that content is enjoyable only so far as I still have story missions to do. Oh, optional content that gives experience or unlocks a weapon? Wonderful, that’ll come in handy on my next mission. Oh, no more missions? Then I have no need for points to upgrade my whatever-gun.

There’s often a lot of content in games these days that I really like, but then just stop having any desire to do once the story is done. Like, I can spend countless hours just goofing around in a game having fun and saying to myself “I’ll get to that story quest eventually.” Once there are no more story quests, the goofing around isn’t quite as fun anymore. Or, not that it’s no longer fun, but I’m just not motivated to waste time in that world anymore.

Take SHADOW OF WAR, where some of the DLC was just high-level orc captains to fight (with rewards like unique gear and all that.) That sort of content is fine, but it’s nothing special. Sure, it gives you more side stuff to do, but they aren’t really missions. Because nothing from the game is gated by them, outside of the loot, I don’t feel like I’m missing anything by not completing them.

That said, it’s very hard for me to accept being “permanently” done with a game if I haven’t cleared all the items on the to-do list. Maybe one day I’ll want to fight some orcs, so installed SoW remains!

At the same time, I’ll also complain that there are games that I wish had endless content. Oh, MAD MAX, why don’t your convoy battles respawn?


For me, it’s when I open the game, the loading screen pops up, and I feel sad.

Like if my immediate reaction to booting it up is a desire to immediately close it, it’s time to stop.


This is how it usually works for me. Part of the problem is that I’m a completionist but most of the games I like put in way too much content anymore so I end up trying to grab all the stuffs for 50 hours and finally I’m like UGH NEXT.

The sad part about this is, as kristina says, there are often interesting things happening in the story but I’m too weary to get to them. I’m in this situation with RDR2 at the moment. I’m getting to a place in the final Chapter where some really great and impactful stuff is happening–Sadie is so great and really should have been the main character–but it feels so much like chore at this point because I’ve already spent 100 hours hunting and fishing and doing challenges and tracking down orchids, etc. I should just go watch the rest of the cutscenes and be done with it, but I won’t. I may or may not actually finish it now, which is kind of how it tends to go for me. I’ve already started playing other things in the meantime.

The most extreme example of this was with Persona 5, where I was so burnt out by the time I finished it that I literally bowed out like minutes before I think I would’ve hit the final credits.

The one good thing about this is that when I finish a game and want more I know that I really like it.


Usually, for me, it is only once I have well and truly forgotten it happened and can’t access memory of it in specificity. I was reminded with a jolt of Max Payne 3 yesterday and it’s been rattling around in my head again, the sense memory of those favelas and that color palette having me “playing” it without booting up a disc since the month it released. It is closer to me these past few days than the hundreds of hours of Skyrim I’ve played, let alone my playthrough of Tacoma just last November. I can do this with tens of games I haven’t thought of in years, and those sense memories can grow back into my perceptions of games I’m playing now, or my writing, or my tabletop game design. And I hate a lot of those games! I didn’t like Max Payne 3 very much at all! Batman: Vengeance SUCKED!

But, like, the original Conker’s Bad Fur Day has a multiplayer mode that got replaced in Live and Reloaded with a Battlefield style team battle. I know it was a goldeneye style mode and there were weasels. That shit’s GONE. I only still know it exists because I know it was replaced. There are tens of games I can’t remember ever playing, and it’s only those that I really consider myself “done” with.

Art gets in my blood. My primary creative tool is embracing synthesis - that the ancestral tree of inspiration and allusion is muddied further by simple coexistence, that the reception and design of a work of art is deeply indebted to seemingly unrelated works that shaped the landscape. My talent for that means treasuring my experiences, even with TERRIBLE games, movies, etc, so that I can better capture context and use it to inform my own creative decisions.

And that means I endeavor to capture that degree of memory and then move on, knowing that any day my memory of my time with…oh, let’s say The Covenant, which is an awful Renny Harlin boys-mode The Craft starring Chace Crawford and Sebastian Stan? Will be brought back to memory when I watch equally bad supernatural horror Eloise, which stars Crawford as well. But if I don’t think about The Covenant for a full year, I’m still not “done” ever bringing it into my life again.


I always meant to watch The Covenant. It looked cool as fuck when I was… however old I was when it was being promoted.