#1 Edited by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

What games have you played to get through hard times?

I remember moving to a new town in 5th grade. For some reason, I found myself playing through Hook for the Abe's everyday after school for like two weeks. I think the uncertainty and stress of not knowing anybody and hating school drove me to want to do something where I knew exactly what to do and how to do it. I just zoned out and let muscle memory take over.

I feel like I want that comfort again, this week.

In what ways have you used games to cope with stress or grief?

#2 Edited by believer258 (11949 posts) -

Oblivion.

Rolling green hills, great music, four voice actors, and some occasional bugs always help me. So does Chrono Trigger.

#3 Posted by TruthTellah (9152 posts) -

Tetris has been scientifically shown to help people after traumatic events, and I personally find it quite nice for such occasions. Now that you mention it, I should play some of that tonight.

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#4 Posted by falserelic (5445 posts) -

Playing Duke3d helps me take my mind off of things. It brings me back to a time when I was young. I remember me and my 3 older brothers enjoying the game alot. At the time I was alot more happy in my life. Until one of my brothers passed away and everything changed. I remember playing the game alot with him, and every time I play Duke3d it brings me back to a happy place.

#5 Posted by geirr (2583 posts) -

Oblivion.

Rolling green hills, great music, four voice actors, and some occasional bugs always help me. So does Chrono Trigger.

Oblivion actually sounds like a great idea. Usually I'll play whatever MMORPG I'm into, the mundane rep grinding and dailies puts my mind on a holiday while I just exist in this weird little bubble - but I don't play MMOs right now. Guess I could give the Firefall beta another try but if that fails then Oblivion or Morrowind will be reinstalled.

#6 Edited by WMoyer83 (645 posts) -

Final Fantasy 7 can whisp me away to a world of low res polygons and standard def pre rendered backgrounds

#7 Posted by smokingdeck (25 posts) -

Quite honestly, aRPGs. There's something about just mowing down endless waves of dumb little monsters, the constant feeling of progression, and just straight up fun in it just helps me relax in ways most things can't. Also, its one of those genres that, atleast I feel, are easier to throw up a video,podcast, or song in the background to, and not take away from the experience.

Lets just say, Path of Exile has been getting a lot of playtime these past few days...

#8 Posted by JouselDelka (966 posts) -
#9 Edited by BeachThunder (11990 posts) -

Tetris has been scientifically shown to help people after traumatic events, and I personally find it quite nice for such occasions. Now that you mention it, I should play some of that tonight.

I've been playing a lot of Not Tetris 2. Maybe you should give it a go, it's pretty much exactly Game Boy Tetris, but with physics.

#10 Posted by Otacon (2209 posts) -

Animal crossing is perhaps my go to, I'm not being taken out of the experience by dying and I can just lose myself in my town for a couple of hours. Very therapeutic.

#11 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

Ultima Online got me through some years in college, and Oblivion with some rough working summers. Fallout 1 and 2 were also important for a few years

#12 Posted by aguststef (37 posts) -

If I am trying to get through some hard times I tend to play some happy games, games that are light on story and full of tight gameplay. I really need to focus on playing the game, because of this I tend to stick to some good 2D platformers.

I also play 3D Mario platformers, however other 3D platformers tend to be more story driven and have tutorials which really takes your concentration away from playing the game.

#13 Posted by Abendlaender (2812 posts) -

Mario Galaxy and 64. It's just so damn refreshing (weirdly enough) to play a game that's all about unbridled happiness and sunshine without the need for zynical "Mario takes drugs and fucks the princess" remarks like many Indie games seem to have. It's just sincere, bright and colorful. And fantastic.
Also early Simpsons season, which aren't games but still help me cry tears of laughter every single time

#14 Posted by BRTurtle (10 posts) -

Anything somewhat mindless but takes majority of my attention away like left 4 dead or Halo (insert number here) or recently my go to game is World of Tanks. It just needs to be something that puts me in a trance. Where I can think about what is gone wrong and how I feel about it and why; without going too dark about the whole situation since I'm partially focused on the game.

#15 Edited by IBurningStar (2173 posts) -

Whenever I am really upset I sit down with a game, just some game -normally it is survival horror- and I just play that game. I will play games all the way through in one sitting and then when I beat the game I immediately start it over and do it again. Depending on how upset I am I may do this for days. There was once an entire week where all I did was wake up, start Silent Hill 4, and play it until I was ready for bed. I do it because it keeps my mind busy and allows me to stagger my emotions and thoughts. It lets me come to terms with something at my own pace and in a way I can handle it.

On the upside, I am absurdly fucking good at Silent Hill 4 now. Well, I might not be any more, but at one point in time I was beating that game in the span of a couple of hours.

#16 Posted by RareSpine (27 posts) -

Right now I've got Persona 4 Golden keeping me occupied from this tragedy and other life issues. I can just get sucked into this world of great characters and the music is amazing. 'Shadow World' always makes me feel as though everything will be okay.

I should play some Lumines on my Vita though. I'm craving a little Disco Infiltrator.

#17 Posted by Winsord (1232 posts) -

I've been trying to do an Ironman run on X-Com. That game is so incredibly stressful that it kind of makes everything else just wash away for a bit, as I'm too focused on it and letting myself get frustrated when I miss three 90% shots in a turn. Mostly I think it's just a reminder to me that, for as much as I like the idea, I'm not very good at turn-based strategy games. Maybe ends up being a little counter-productive at times in this case though, as it was Ryan's Game of the Year for 2012.

#18 Edited by EarlessShrimp (1646 posts) -

I've booted up Dodonpachi Resurrection because that will make me so unbelievably frustrated that it kinda helps divert some of my attention away from the awful events. That and trying to clear Mushihime-sama Futari BL on one credit. Aside from that, random games and the occasional desire to boot up xcom to further frustrate myself, but to more directly honor Ryan.

#19 Edited by CodeTherion (42 posts) -

I think it's more the singing that helps me but I usually find myself playing Rockband when something happens in my life. They say music and singing is therapeutic and I guess when it comes to me that is true.

#20 Edited by 8Bit_Archer (456 posts) -

They don't. Whenever something like this happens I want to be near my family, not somewhere off by myself playing a game.

#21 Edited by YoungFrey (1321 posts) -

Animal Crossing, got me through my grandmother's death in 08.

#22 Posted by abrasion (146 posts) -

Games don't get me through hard times, I have to be honest. My brain needs to be completely disengaged. Put me behind a TV show or movies, I'll just binge for a while.

#23 Edited by Video_Game_King (36272 posts) -

Just any game on hand, really.

#24 Posted by Sanity (1911 posts) -

Just about anything, but i finally got around to beating Hotline Miami because that seemed fitting. I have the new civ expansion but i don't really want to play a "thinking" game right now.

#25 Posted by carlthenimrod (1594 posts) -

Minecraft.

Just turn my brain off and... I dunno... build a crappy castle of sadness.

#26 Edited by devilzrule27 (1239 posts) -

Games unfortunately don't help me. Instead I prefer to find something dumb on Tv and lay on the coach while I hold my dogs.

#27 Posted by reddin (418 posts) -

Minecraft (modded to hell and back) is definitely my gaming comfort food. Just put on some music or a podcast and just explore, or build some shit.

For this specific bit of "hard times" though, I've been cruising around in Saints Row The 3rd, committing random acts of violence. My favorite thing to do is taking a car with the wheel spikes and slowly pulling up next to a truck, and watching it just go off on a mad rampage.

#28 Posted by JasonR86 (9714 posts) -

Things that are mindless and leisurely. The sort of stuff I play after work is what I play when things are hard. Right now that's Okami and Torchlight 2. Eventually it'll be Tales of Xilia.

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#29 Posted by McLargepants (384 posts) -

Super Mario Bros 3. I'll whip that bad boy out when I'm in a bad mood, and it'll get me through anything.

#30 Posted by ConfusedOwl (944 posts) -

Anything with a large amount of nostalgia attached to it helps a lot. .Hack, Sonic Adventure 1 and 2, Gothic 1 and 2, Morrowind, Megaman X and X4. I could go on for a bit more because there are quite a lot of games I hold dearly. They all help in there own way when I remember the good times I had with those games.

#32 Posted by kerse (2114 posts) -

It was Xenogears for a long time, but I think Persona 4 has replaced it, that game always puts me in a better mood. Well except for a specific part of it. Also Sleeping Dogs is pretty good for that.

#33 Posted by Live2bRighteous (317 posts) -

Max Payne 3... surprisingly, has been that game for me. I waste countless hours into that game just messing around in the multiplayer. The tazers they added have been part of the reason too. lol

#34 Posted by cloudymusic (1134 posts) -

@earlessshrimp said:

I've booted up Dodonpachi Resurrection because that will make me so unbelievably frustrated that it kinda helps divert some of my attention away from the awful events. That and trying to clear Mushihime-sama Futari BL on one credit.

You're stronger than I am. I love those games too, but I don't think that I could handle the extra frustration at times where I'm already feeling shitty.

As for me, I tend to lose myself in an MMO if I'm actively playing one, or if not, replay some sort of favorite SNES game from my childhood.

#35 Posted by Glottery (1301 posts) -

I think I always rather watch old episodes of The Simpons than play any games, when I need a cure for the blues...but if I do, I think I'll pick WoW due to the community I have over there.

#36 Edited by Slag (4455 posts) -

@abrasion said:

Games don't get me through hard times, I have to be honest. My brain needs to be completely disengaged. Put me behind a TV show or movies, I'll just binge for a while.

This, for whatever reason Games are happy time things for me. Maybe it's because I can feel myself thinking too much while doing so, which inevitably leads my brain down paths I don't want it to go.

Besides watching tv or surfing the internet, usually I'll do housework, paperwork, yard work busy productive things (or things that feel productive) with some loud music on. Or maybe some intense exercise. But something that quiets my brain for a bit.

#37 Posted by Bane122 (794 posts) -

I went to a very small school, the entire high school was 60 some-odd students with my class being seven. The morning of us taking our SATs one of us was killed in a car wreck but we didn't get word of it until that night. I'd recently picked up Blast Corps and Doom 64 and just played the shit out of those all night.

It was a nice distraction at the time but now I can't think about those games without being reminded of that time and it casts a little bit of a pall over them.