Since it's GDQ season I thought I'd pose this interesting question:
Do you think hobbies like speedrunning are rendered much less attractive because of entropy? That is, your current conscious window into the universe has a time limit fixed to it because of the how things work physically?
The meme of "you only live once" is so embedded in popular thought that it becomes a major factor in how we act, I feel. So, the tendency is that most people treat life like a buffet, and try to eat as many different stuff as they can and as much as they can as possible.
To stick to one thing (eg speedrunning) to the point where it excludes others evokes a knee-jerk reaction in most people-
>that's all you're doing with your life?
>that's not all there is to life
See the problem? By treating life like it happens to "you" only once, you inevitably end up acting according to a dogma of sorts.How many more people would speedrun as opposed to hop to a new game because of the "you only live once gotta have a colorful, wide breadth of experiences" meme? Is it possible for the average person to accept that this sentiment (you only live once) is not really true and do you think that would benefit the speedrunning community?
I usually play games with the assumption that I won't play them again, so I try to do as much as possible during my first playthrough. Consequently I will often get bored of the whole game before I finish it because I ironically end up stretching out my time with it
This is actually a very interesting question, and I think the post improves if you take it a step further and read 'speedrunning' as a broader analogy, or just one example of many activities that could be chosen instead.
That's what I intended; it's just that I wanted to make it relevant so people would actually respond -which has turned out to not be the case.
But yeah. Speaking of applications, this also works for completing games on higher difficulties or doing challenge runs.
Do you play the game again on hard or do you be efficient with your time and play a brand new game? What matters? How can you predict that you'll have more fun with the latter than the former? Does thinking that you'll have more fun with one thing than the another sabotage your efforts in having fun because you're actively trying to have fun (as you have deliberately chosen one thing and not another)?
Isn't it all just anxiety driven behavior-that you're trying to "get as much as you can" out of life before your time is up, so you can sit back and cross your arms behind your head and look upon your multiplicity of experiences at some point in the future that you never actually end up getting to?
Let me add my answer OP:
Personally, this thought does not affect my decision to speedrun or not speedrun. I basically don't speedrun, but I do very much enjoy the idea of sometimes focusing on a single game and replaying it back-to-back-to-back etc beyond the limits and depth most people would play it. I just find there are almost always more creative goals than completion time. I think the reason people prefer speedrunning while I don't is simply because of the community and the sense of competition, not because of shame or acceptance.
The problem of "that's all you're doing with your life?" does comes into play with videogaming in general. I personally don't feel it has ever been socially beneficial to share my love of games in real life since I left college (currently age 31 w/ a graduate degree).
If I really enjoy playing the game and want to make it more fresh, hard mode can be a pretty good way. I did that in Dragon's Dogma after I had played normal way too much and I had to change my approach to combat
(I'm the anon you replied to)
Like I sort of said in the post below yours, I do enjoying replaying games again. This can start with completing all the difficulties but it also includes doing my own challenges or experiment with different strategies/parties. I almost always know before I finish my first playthrough if I'm likely to do a second playthrough soon after.
I don't get anxiety about maximizing my fun per time spent. I do get anxiety about playing games versus doing something productive, and this sometimes has a very strange effect on the game I choose the play next. Somehow I can avoid "guilt' so to speak by playing two games that are half as long, or a game that is easier to "put on hold" halfway through without getting lost should I want to move on.
I'm not all that interested in speedruns, but whenever I see people doing them I stand up and take notice.
It's amazing expertise. Just not a type of expertise that gets you laid or paid.
> Why should "productivity" trump all? This ties back into OP's question-why is everyone in such a rush to be productive?
It's not easy to get jobs. I'm in academia, and this profession requires reapplying for a new position (at a different college/university) every 2 years. More than 300 applications per position is normal, and each application would normally apply to just as many positions. The standard of getting a job offer requires you be productive all the time. Having the degree doesn't qualify you most of the time, you have to have more and more publications and professional achievements.
>The problem of "that's all you're doing with your life?" does comes into play with videogaming in general.
You'll get this reaction whenever someone devotes a large amount of time to any single task, really.
Most speedrunners I watch seem to be relatively normal and just happen to play videogames in a very specific way in their spare time.
Yeah, it's part of the job. It's sort of like being "half self-employed" if that makes any sense. You have a regular job teaching classes and you spend the other hours doing stuff on your own, working from home if you like. The pressure to actually work during that time only comes from yourself.
> To stick to one thing (eg speedrunning) to the point where it excludes others evokes a knee-jerk reaction in most people
I notice this a lot when it comes to personal health. If you refuse soda/alcohol/cookies/cake or something out of a personal choice to eat well, people's knee jerk response is to explain their choice to consume it occasionally through this sentiment. They don't want to exclude less healthy foods in favor of others.
In the gaming press and podcasts and stuff, whenever "long games" come up people often lament their inability to devote themselves to a game that long. I find it weird, it sort of feels like a lie sometimes.
When "difficult" games come up (shmups being an easy game, but it applies to any genre) people likewise tend not to be interested. I think it is the fear of time investment to preserve through these games.
Strangely, multiplayer games (especially of the kind which tend to be very all-consuming to the people who play them) seem to get this sort of response LESS frequently that you would expect. Maybe there's something to that.
Im watching it for the entertaining speedruns, but i really dont understand why people try and beat the world records of the technicians that know 99.9% of the game and will wipe their ass with your personal best. They've spent countless hours digging up everything from specific frames to dev builds to insider details and their world record is flawless perfection. You honestly cant beat it, trying to just seems dumb. Its not objective, there were no faults made, its like trying to compete with TAS's.
Some people try and deny this by making up their own speedrun categories which are just retarded. It should boil down to two. Any% and 100%. No glitchless, no easy difficulty 100%, no max difficulty 100% just Hardest Difficulty Any% or 100%, simple as that. We saw with Noirs HL2 run that he just cheated at the end, who's to say that sv_cheats 1 runs arent coming next?
If you arent the WR holder and either
>Know for 100% you can wipe the floor with the old record
>Know something that the old WR holder didnt and exploit that for a new WR
>Find a glitch and use that to get the absolute fastest WR
then speedrun. Anything else stop being a cosmo and do something better with your time.
Look at the average person's steam profile. You'll find that they've racked up THOUSANDS of hours in multiplayer games whereas single-player games will rarely hit the triple digits. What's more is that a sizable proportion of the single-player games people buy on steam are never even touched! Not even installed, sometimes years after the date of purchase!
This doesn't make any sense on paper. But it does when you think about it like this, I think:
The average person is extrinsically motivated, myself included. Hell, if I were entirely intrinsically motivated I would never spend this amount of time on 4chan.
What do you get when you grind Ocarina of Time for YEARS to get an insanely fast time? Internet fame I guess, there's some social recognition to be had. But it's much easier to pop in CoD and stroke your e-peen after a match in the lobby when you get 1st place and are at the top of the dog pile. Even then, it's not like you're going to get laid after getting a sub 30 minute time, or get $100,000. The external incentives are just not there.
So, think of how intrinsically motivated you'd have to be to beat, say, Dark Souls soul level 1 7 times under the condition that you could not upload your accomplishment to youtube or convey it to others in any form?
It's almost like our brains do have a say in our alleged "free will".
Yeah, and just like people with play (in your example) CoD over OoT speedruns I also I think being able to 'compete' with speedrun times is why people prefer the activity more than other challenge runs.
Yep, when there's another human being to interact with in a given activity there's a much greater chance that people will gravitate towards it. Look at 4chan.
Competing against yourself (or the CPU, for that matter) just doesn't get the neurological juices flowing like going toe to toe with another person-in a neurologically average person, of course.