Gamer relationship hack: Don’t try to get between a gamer and a new game

Game releases are a serious matter (Image Source: NBC)

Game releases are a serious matter (Image Source: NBC)

If you are a partner of a gamer, at some point in the relationship, you will experience the epic ordeal that is THE RELEASE OF A NEW VIDEO GAME. And probably more than once.

If you have already been lucky enough to witness such a momentous occasion, you will know that these things are a BIG DEAL. Here’s what to expect:

The lead-up

For the really highly anticipated games, the hype will start long before the game release date. You will hear little squeals from your partner when the game’s teaser trailer first comes out. They will gossip excitedly about it online with their gamer buddies in their cryptic lingo. The release date will be easier for them to recall than your anniversary. They may make cheeky remarks about this being the last chance for you to hang out with them for awhile.

The midnight release

At last, the release date will arrive. Some game stores really milk a game release by allowing people to collect their pre-ordered games right on the strike of midnight, the minute the game is officially released. You’ve probably seen the massive lines of people queueing outside Apple stores when new iPhones are released. Well midnight game releases are similar (but often with a bit more cosplay!). When I asked a friend why people bother going to midnight releases now that games are available online and are downloadable, he told me it was mainly for the unique social element. “When else do you get a chance to stand around for hours with other people who also like the same game that much that they’re willing to stand around for hours with random geeks?” Readers, do any of you or your partners go to midnight releases? Why or why not?

The honeymoon phase

And, once the game is finally in their hot little hands, that’s when things get really serious. Your gamer WILL need to spend time playing this new game, immediately upon getting home. And I’m not just talking about playing the game for a few hours and then going back to their usual business. This is serious, clear your whole freakin’ diary kinda stuff. Don’t be surprised if they mysteriously come down with the flu and have to call in sick to work for the next week. Or, at the very least, they’ll probably be fairly sleep-deprived.

I’ve gone through this a few times during the blissful years I have been with my partner, experiencing it for the first time with the release of Starcraft 2. Those crafty guys at Blizzard sure picked the perfect release date for SC2; my partner’s birthday. So, as it was his birthday, there was no way in the world that I could say say no to him playing his brand new, fresh out of the packet, “whole-internet-is-raving-on-about-it-and-I-haven’t-played-StarCraft-for-a-decade” game. And so, I did what I felt what the right thing to do and gave him his gaming time.

I knew that the novelty of the new game would soon wear off and, before long, he’d be back to his usual gaming routine. I also knew that I’d just need to give it a few months and *rolls eyes* he’d be onto a new game. I’ve stuck with my partner through the release of SC2, LoL and SWTOR, as well as a few other random games in between, and it’s the same every time. Before long, the honeymoon period will be over and everything will be back to normal.

Many gamers will probably act the same way, and there’s not much that we can or should do to change it. In my opinion, this is just one of those occasions where we as devoted Partners of Gamers just need to compromise a little. Trust me, they’ll appreciate it! Just bite your tongue, wish them luck, and perhaps you can use this opportunity to duck off on a quick holiday or something :)

EDIT: Quite a few of you have reached this particular post recently. Have you been searching for advice in the lead-up to the Fallout 4 release? Or Call of Duty: Black Ops III? Whatever the Google, I hope this post has been helpful to you!

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Hi, I'm Vicki and my partner is a gamer. I help bridge the divide between gamers and non-gamers. If you'd like to get in touch, you can reach me at

4 CommentsLeave a comment

  • […] Not only is the post well-written, but I also found that I could completely relate. I like to think that my partner thinks in a similar way to the author about his own gaming and about me. Like the author, my partner also enjoyed a carefree pastime of RPGs long before I ever came in the picture. And like the author’s girlfriend, I too have had my patience tested while being introduced to The Hobby and have since accepted the fact that I will see significantly less of my guy whenever a new game is released. […]

  • ROFL – I believe my wife’s referred to it as becoming a Gamer’s Widow before when there’s a new release I wanted to play. I got hit with a couple of big ones with Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning and Mass Effect 3. She’s incredibly understanding about it though. It even became the point of a joke on Valentine’s Day when the Mass Effect 3 demo came out. She was out of town – she went to Disney with her best friend, and she joked that I wouldn’t have to clutter up my Valentine’s Day with things like flowers, chocolate or going out to dinner and I could do what I really wanted, which was to play Mass Effect 3’s demo. :P

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