I wanted to play Uncharted 4 today and didn’t.
I might still, the day isn’t over yet, but I probably won’t. I’m recording Uncharted 4 for the channel right now. It’s my first time through, I’d probably have finished it by now, but I’m clearing an hour at a time, chapter by chapter because I’m doing it for the channel. Playing Uncharted 4 means getting out the little PVR Rocket, clearing the USB stick, turning of the PS4’s HDCP protection so I can get a picture etc. etc. etc.
I’m loving Uncharted 4. It might be my favourite entry in a series I love, but playing it for the channel is so different to just sticking it on and vegetating to Nathan Drake’s dreamy blue eyes. Commentating, making sure the footage is still recording, making sure I sound clear; it’s all work. Not very hard work, but work all the same. Playing a game I love for a few hours leaves me feeling refreshed and relaxed, recording leaves me drained.
Don’t get me wrong, I love it, and I love running the Youtube channel, but it’s strange how easily your hobby becomes your work. I try to hit three big streams or uploads per day, once that’s done, who wants to spend more time staring at a screen? Playing for fun takes place strictly between sessions of playing for serious, which is still fun, but not as fun as the other kind of fun play that I mentioned before.
It’s a good thing in a way. I set up the channel in the first place because I was spending too much money on games that were either consuming all my time so nothing really got done, or sitting on shelves unplayed. By making my hobby my work, I’ve really turned my life around, but I sort of lost my hobby in the process. I’ve had to actively pursue other hobbies. Netflix is a blessing. But youtube isn’t the sort of job that lends itself well to this kind of life. I find myself perpetually in the mindset of the self employed. If I have time to watch three episodes of A Series of Unfortunate Events, I probably had time to log in and stream a bit of Minecraft, if I can kick back and waste time brushing my teeth, surely I could be answering a few silly little YT comments.
Working with games has made me a workaholic…
Well, except for the money.
And it’s not like I can kick the hobby completely, enjoy games only in my little circle of work and learn to love Films instead. I need to be up to date, even my outdated little channel needs a new game every now and then. Even I need to be up on the conversation, Nintendo Switches and Playstation Pros.
It’s not really a complaint, I love what I do. I want to do it for the rest of my life. I’d like to say one day that entertaining people pays the rent. I sit and I think about that and really, truly, genuinely, and uniquely sit back and think ‘there’s a job I’d feel satisfied to do’ and yet the deeper down this rabbit hole I get, the less I play. I spend time with games, sure… I have the controller in my hand for no less than five hours most days, but play?
I might never play again.