27 July 2022

How To Pick Up Gaming As A Hobby



Video games are an artform these days. The medium is bigger than ever; in-depth and immersive technology, AR landscapes giving us whole new worlds to explore, and even one-person studios bringing the cutting edge of gaming to our screens. For as many big AAA deals that hit the market quarterly, there are twice as many hidden gems you can pick up for £1.99 a piece! All in all, there’s something for everyone in the gaming world. 


But gaming as a hobby can be intimidating. If you’ve not been using console gamepads or a mouse and keyboard since you were a teen, gaming can feel like a hard community to move into as an adult. However, it’s rather easy to sit down and boot up a game, and it can even be a very beneficial hobby for you! Here are some more tips to keep in mind if you want to start gaming a little more often. 


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Why Gaming is a Good Hobby


Gaming is a very good hobby to take under your wing, thanks to just how many core skills it can help you build. Not only is it one of the most fun things a person can do from the comfort of their own sofa, but you can learn a lot without even noticing it. For example, gaming has long been well known to help you hone your problem-solving skills. Plenty of puzzles get thrown at you in every single game you play and figuring out how to complete them can help you in real life as well. 


One of the main things gaming can help you do is be more creative in life. You tend to think more creatively as you play in simulated environments, and you can catch plenty of inspiration when games impose limitations on your gameplay style. So many people have come up with some pretty inspiring gaming situations by simply having to think outside of the box! 


All in all, gaming can be beneficial, and it’s a great way for both kids and adults to improve a number of faculties. And with all that in mind, here are some great ways to get into gaming and have fun as you go. 


Ask a Friend for Game Recommendations


A good way to get started, considering the massive library of potential games you could try out, is to ask a friend for a recommendation. A lot of games these days are made to be a real challenge - most recently Elden Ring, to name one - and picking one of these up as a novice could seriously frustrate you.


Plus a friend will know what kind of things you already like and will be better able to point you in the right direction. They’ll know if you’re more of a platformer or an RPG guy, or if you’d love an FPS that’s great for harnessing your aiming ability. There’s a whole bank of genres out there and subgenres within those, and it can be overwhelming if you don’t really play any video games. 


Or you could go online and use sites like Reddit for general recommendations. Subreddits like r/ShouldIbuythisgame or r/gamingsuggestions are two good places to go for advice on what to pick up next. If you know the kind of game you want to play, these two forums will be able to provide plenty of info on what to try. 


Pick a Comfortable Platform


The gaming platform you use matters a lot more than you think. Some people take to gamepads like a duck to water whilst some people never quite get the hang of them. On the other hand, using a keyboard and mouse can be incredibly dynamic for some, but others can hate how clunky it feels in comparison. But ultimately, it’s up to you to choose what platform you like most based on how comfortable it is to use. 


It’s also a lot cheaper to focus on just one shelf of games compared to picking and choosing from the whole store! To start with, PC gaming is more popular than ever. It’s easier to set up a computer with optimised hardware, and most people already own a laptop at the least. Plus, if you’re already used to gaming on sites like https://www.vickers.bet/casino, staying on PC is a good call. 


But consoles have long been the front runner in the gaming world thanks to the image they bring. When we think of gaming, a PS5 or an Xbox One are the first things we tend to think of. And there are some pretty sweet exclusive games on either side! So if the kids already have a console, boot it up one day and try out a game yourself to see how it feels. 


Get to Know Your Platform Specs


This is mostly an issue for the PC gamers out there, but you can still make some modifications to consoles as well. For example, you can add an SSD for extra storage and faster loading times, especially if your console is a few years old. But if you’ve chosen to play PC as your major platform, it’s best to figure out how the right specs for a usable gaming rig. 


The world of computer tech moves fast; Nvidia, the most well-known GPU developer on the market, brings out new tech around every 2 years. But older rigs still stand the test of time, and it’s easy to upgrade pieces here and there as you need. But what are you looking for when you’re in the market for a gaming PC?


You’ll want to keep an eye out for RAM amount, the type of storage used (SSDs are favoured most currently), and the CPU and GPU in play. Plus if you check out the store pages for a game you want to play, you should easily be able to find the minimum recommendations for running it. But you can also try building your own PC; there are plenty of tutorials you can use that go step by step, so check out a few before you part with any money for an already built set. 


Get on the Mic


A lot of games are made to be multiplayer these days, and that can be nerve-wracking for a number of reasons. Toxic gamers tend to populate these kinds of games, and you’ve probably heard a number of creative insults hurled at other players in your lifetime. Maybe even the kids have been subject to it in the past, and you’re concerned about allowing them to see you play these kinds of games? 


But getting on the mic to interact with a gaming community isn’t all bad. Sure, some games are more notorious for it than others, but you can make all kinds of new friends by dipping into a lobby and letting your voice be heard. Older players, maybe like yourself, tend to be far more mature and level-headed when playing games, so it’s these gamers you want to try and make connections with. 


Plus if you’ve already got a gaming group to play with, you can use private chats and lobbies to keep random players out. This helps limit the toxic environment to a minimum, and you don’t have to worry about hearing any kind of negativity over your headset. 


Don’t Think Too Much of Your Performance


In the early days when you’re just starting out, make sure your gaming experience is fun! It doesn’t matter how good you are at a certain game, as long as you’re enjoying yourself and having a good time. Sure, it can be frustrating to make a mistake every now and then, but the more you play the better you’ll naturally get - good games set a progression level from the beginning that allows anyone to get involved, and a bit of practice will take you far. 


If you’ve ever used the internet, you already know there’s a current mentality amongst the gaming community that you have to be ‘proficient’ at gaming to really enjoy it. That tends to include the idea that you should never play a game on ‘easy mode. But if that’s where you want to start, don’t let that idea get into your head. Simply buying a single-player game with your own money means you get to play it whatever way you want! 


Gaming was Made to Be Fun


And that’s what makes it a great hobby! You can dip into another world filled with stories you can lose yourself in, blow off some steam, and have a great time in group matches with your friends. 


Sure, it can be easy to lose time when the PlayStation is on, but that doesn’t mean it’s an inherently bad activity to do. You could even improve your hand-eye coordination whilst you’re at it! Pick your platform, choose a game to get started with, and don’t be afraid to try a multiplayer scenario. 


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