Poll Question 349 – Does your playing style represent your personality?

I am generally very open on this site about my personality and character traits. I like to think it is one of the reasons for my modest success.

Today, I am going to share another personal story. Many years ago I had a girlfriend and she noticed that when i was avoiding doing something important or difficult, I would begin to organise my personal spaces; desk, wardrobe etc. She said I would start to “make boxes” to rearrange things. From that point forward, any time I was procrastinating I was said to be “making boxes”.

I still find myself doing it today and a few days ago, I was playing a map and noticed myself “stacking crates”. Regular readers will know I have a (terrible/interesting/stupid/intelligent/useless/useful) habit of trying to get out of ALL the games, maps and mods I play.

So was this “stacking crates” just a video game version of “making boxes”? Was I avoiding playing the map by doing this? I’m not sure of the answer but it did lead me to wonder whether how you play videos games is the same as how you approach life.

Do you change personalities because generally in-game there are no serious or important consequences of your actions? In life, do you take chances or are you more careful.

Life obviously, doesn’t have save points, either manual or auto, that you can start again from, but life is also an experience and simply avoiding interesting situations or risks because you can’t try again could make our lives boring.

Clearly, it’s not for me to tell you how to play OR live your life, but as Plato would have probably said if he lived today, “A video game life unexamined is not worth living”.

Time to vote

Does your playing style represent your personality?

  • No, my gaming personality is nothing like the real me. (12%, 9 Votes)
  • Maybe, I generally vary my style. (44%, 32 Votes)
  • Yes, if I were in a video game I would be exactly the same (44%, 32 Votes)

Total Voters: 73

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  1. I’m generally pretty cautious in life and it certainly affects the way I play. I wouldn’t say I don’t take risks, but I certainly take greater ones when playing a video game (Which goes without saying what with save points or extra lives). Shooters such as Half-Life I just play as they were intended to be played. I don’t attempt to escape from levels or anything like that because I love to be immersed. The issue with FPS games is that they are generally linear, and you are controlling a character who has already been given a name, a history and a goal.

    RPGs are a different story. I usually try to emulate myself as closely as possible in a game that allows several approaches to solving a problem or completing a quest. More often than not, I would try to talk somebody down before things escalate to violence, and when that is necessary, I’m methodical, quick and quiet. I’m usually the charismatic archer or sniper when given the choice. 😛

  2. Maybe?

    I think the most obvious reflection of this is in games that have some kind of moral choice, like Fallout, BioShock or Mass Effect. I will generally play as the good guy (or gal, whenever possible) because that’s what I would naturally do. I will try to take the diplomatic route instead of guns blazing unless the subject has done something worth killing them for.

    Similarly, a great way to detach me from the storyline is to have the character do something I wouldn’t. There’s been a trend in triple-A games where the player isn’t literally the avatar and is more like the guide for an existing character, who has their own personality and desires. You merely lead them from one cutscene to the next. When their big mouths get them into trouble, it’s your task to bail them out. I really dislike that “cinematic” approach.

  3. I vary my style.

    But on my first playthrough of a game I usually play as if I was the character.
    I´m all about immersion. It´s what I love about video games.

    But when I replay a game, I try out new things, go completely RAMBO sometimes.

  4. After 14hrs of “The Closure” I found my usual cautious gameplay style has morphed into a rampaging killing machine able to kill hunters, of which I was terrified of, with ease!
    The real me is hardly the mass murderer! Honest!

  5. The decisions I make portray my personality exactly, but my playing style varies in a considerable amount.

    I tend to get bored of using the same 2-3 weapons over and over so I swap them entirely. I make the change from “RAMBO STYLE” to “SNIPER STYLE” to “SWAT STYLE” rather quickly.

    So yeah, to sum it up:

    Charging like the ultimate badass and then regretting my decision while struggling with just a little over 2 health? Yes, that’s me.

  6. galocza

    a very interseting question and i thought about it a lot myself.

    i voted yes,…
    i dont consider myself a lucky person and so i try to be prepared to everything life throws at me. eg in a shooter like hl(1-2) i move forward very cautiously, conserve ammo, switch weapons to keep my ammo level balanced. if i sustain damage that i think is not acceptable, i reload a save. i also abuse sniper rifles (and such) to take out enemies before they can hurt me or preferably notice me. in hl1 i also abused the recharging xen weapon to conserve other types of ammo or in blood 2 the voodoo doll for the same reason.

    in rpgs my personality becomes more apparent. funnily enough in these games i prefer warrior-like close combat characters which shows i also have a heroic (stupid) streak. i cannot fully explain the controversy. maybe its that in a shooter i dont know when the next health pack will come but in an rpg i can heal myself after (or in) the battle at a low cost. if this theory is correct, my charging bull style of play is the characteristic one. i can accept that, i know that i have a temperament although in real life i try to supress it so i dont hurt others.
    as a character who has to make choices i mostly play myself. my parents brought me up to be good man and i try to do the right thing most of the time which brings a few problems to the table. the first one is that im also a completionist, so i feel often pressed to do quests which are a bit on the evil side. i do them anyway and after those i feel real guilt 8(.
    i count as shames of my life that in morrowind i always murder that kaijit thief woman just because getting a ledger from her is a quest or that i kill dyvath fir who is a pervert and a madman but also brilliant and empathic to some.
    the other is that game creators nowadays tend to create situations where theres no morally correct path. im looking at you witcher, skyrim. in these games as part of the main storyline you are presented with choices and all options are bad to some degree. whatever you choose to do the game _punishes_ you for that choice. i really hate this, guilt again, and this time not even my fault. i just played the game in a way i was intended to do.

    i only play one mp game, cs, and there i also prefer ramboing like in rpgs. its also worth mentioning that i _never_ grieve, curse at my opponents/teammates, whine, tease etc and i really hate when others do it. i try (successfully) to behave in the game as in real life. i know this is strange to some people, many people think that trash talking is part of the game and it is acceptable. i dont. being rude, being a jerk is just as bad in game as in real life.

    i think i might come off as someone overly sensitive and i think im really not. but a good game affects us, it tells a story and we players are a part, no, protagonists of it. we play a game but the game according to the intentions of the creators plays us back, just like a good movie or book. but in contrast to those in games we make the decisions. and in multiplayer? just dont be arseholes, people. i know its easy to vent online, but its the way of a coward.

  7. I’m not sure how relevant the following is,, but here ya go–
    I loved how in the original Walking Dead the game told you if you were “normal”,, and most of the time I was,, but in fallout 4 Far Harbour I got to a point where all the web pages told me “this is not the best ending” which made me question some decisions I’d made, but then I thought fuck it, its my game, I’ll play it like I want to,,
    so whats changed in 4 years?
    me? my gaming style(LOL!!)? or both.

    Damn you Phillip!

  8. Yeah, I’ve noticed I tend to keep some personality traits in-game. For instance, just like in real life I try to keep things peaceful and friendly at all times, if a game gives me non-lethal options then that’s the only way I’ll play it. At the same time, I’m a friendly guy who always acts as morally as possible, and any game that has a morality system generally sees me play the good guy.

    Of course, gaming sometimes is all about escapism so I still enjoy shooting people in the face in FPS’s. But when I’m presented with choice, I tend to go with my own personality rather than role-play the game.

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