“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo. “So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
Strange times indeed everyone. If, like us here at TGA, you are in lockdown, then now is the time to have a think about what you could do that you have never had the chance before. Think of it as an opportunity to catch up on something you’ve been meaning to get around to.
So here to help you is a list of five things gamers could finally get around to doing while we have this golden opportunity to do so.
1 – Clean Your Console/PC
When was the last time you unplugged your console, had a look around the area you use it, and cleaned it? Picking up the console you may be shocked at how much dust has accumulated underneath or around the vents. If you are feeling a little more adventurous, there are many guides to dismantling the systems so you can access the areas inside to properly clean them, or if you are feeling especially adventurous and have a decent level of technical competence, you can reapply thermal paste to further prolong the life of your precious devices.
If that sounds too technical, fear not, there are plenty more things you can do besides dusting your gaming area or the air intakes. You can clean the outside of the PC, console and the controllers too. Do you share that controller with others? Now is the time to clean them, and get toothpicks to dig out the grime jammed in the gaps. A soft cloth dampened in some warm water is ideal for removing built-up grime, just be sure to unplug everything before you attempt this, please!
2 – Finish that game!
How many of us are guilty of starting but not completing that game you purchased a while ago? We’ve all done it. The way it happens is just as you’re enjoying a game, a new one comes out that makes you stop the one you were playing, often resulting in an ever-expanding list of unfinished games. Isn’t now the perfect opportunity to go back to it and finish it off? If you have the physical copy of the game, completing it means you can then sell it afterwards with a satisfied “I completed this” grin on your face. If it’s a digital version, you can free up some valuable space on your hard-drive. With new consoles on the horizon, now is the ideal time to take care of that backlog.
3 – Join a club for your favourite game!
Enjoy racing games or online shooters? Never joined a clan/club as you never had the nerve to? Now would be a great time to do so.
Many online gaming clubs can also be found on many social media apps and would welcome new members, and the good ones have a constant flow of events so that the game you have been playing over and over suddenly has new depth with teams, leagues and competition with new friends.
On the PS racing game, GT Sport, you could look no further than the MRC (Mature Racing Club) on Facebook. For example, over 100 drivers are about to embark on a fourteen race GT4 series, but if this doesn’t suit you, they also run many other events.
On the Xbox racing game, Forza 7, you could look for a great racing group like ETR (Elite Tier Racing), who again have many different series of races going with a very sociable group of friendly drivers from all over the world. Race meets are held all through the week, as well as at varied time zones, so you are sure to find an event that suits you.
4- Try something new
It is very easy to think we as gamers only like one or two types of games and nothing else. I used to be the same in thinking all I liked was FPS shooters and car racing games. How little I knew.
With many games having free demos to download, now is a great time to try a new genre of game to expand your gaming horizons. There was a time that I, personally, couldn’t stand JRPG games, but now I have my own dedicated JRPG YouTube channel. If you had met me five years ago, I would have laughed in your face at such a statement, but the journey started with one game that I decided to try, that game being Samurai Warriors 4. Now is the time for you to maybe do the same?
In addition to this, I would challenge TGA readers to purchase a new Indie game to try. A lot of indie developers experiment and push the boat out on what is normal. Sometimes they miss, but a lot of the time they come up with creative and inventive takes on games that big-budget developers won’t or can’t afford to risk. Some of the best games I have ever played have been Indie games. The obvious choices would be Journey, Abzu, or Guacamelee, however. I recently picked up 11-11 memories in a PlayStation sale, and frankly, it’s blown me away.
5- Watch and Talk
I myself have been very poorly during the last few weeks. I am also a massive baseball fan, who is very disappointed that the beginning of the real MLB season has been suspended indefinitely.
As the game MLB the Show 2020 was released recently, I decided to watch some of the excellent streamers to see if anyone was starting a virtual season. I don’t normally watch streamers as I don’t have the time, but unable to play myself while laid up, I locked into one gamer who was playing baseball, he was entertaining, and I had a laugh watching him play.
During his stream, he asked if everyone was ok? I wrote that no I wasn’t. Suddenly a huge flow of messages of support came my way from others in the stream, and the streamer himself, offering their well-wishes to get better, hang in there etc. To be honest, I was truly humbled.
People really do care, and it’s good to talk. Gamers are no different. So I would encourage you to open up those chat lobbies, interact with the streamers, talk to people and you might be pleasantly surprised.
Keep safe out there gamers. Some say we have been training for moments like this all of our gaming lives. Don’t waste the time given to us. Stay inside, keep washing your hands, keep your distance from each other, but most importantly game on!