12 more signs you're no longer a hardcore gamer

We had such a great response to our previous '11 signs you're no longer a hardcore gamer' piece that a sequel was completely and utterly inevitable (this is about videogames, what do you expect?). Don't let anyone tell you this list wasn't as good as the last one. So here we go:

1. Your partner won't let you wear games-related t-shirts

Even the cool Atari ones.

2. You begin to justify not playing your consoles to your mates

The Euro Championships were on, I had to cut the lawn, I'm really tired when I get home after work, the missus was watching Sex In The City… you know how it is.

Truth is, you have six games on the go all at the same time, none of which have been played for a month, and all precisely 23% completed because you're either bored or stuck or both.


3. You start turning off the electricity between sessions

You worry about all the batteries being eaten by your army of wireless joypads, Wiimotes, Big Button Controllers and Balance Boards. And you start turning consoles off instead of leaving them on standby. Well, that last electricity bill was pretty big…

4. You start to use the 360 and PS3 as entertainment hubs

...You know, instead of playing games on them? The PS3 is relegated to a dodgy DivX player and the 360 is used for streaming music from your PC, even though you've got a perfectly good CD player and you have to walk further to turn the PC on and… well, at least they're being used, okay?

5. The idea of WiiWare games being over in six hours sounds great

It's been suggested that WiiWare launch title Lost Winds only lasts about six hours. The idea of buying a cheap game you can actually finish (and doesn't take up any shelf space) suddenly seems like heaven.

Old games

6. You can't be arsed to trade in those old games cluttering up your living room

Because that would just mean a bunch of new games cluttering up your living room.

7. These days you're less Metal Gear Solid and more Ratchet & Clank

Or LEGO Star Wars. Or anything rated 3+. Well, they're colourful and really fun to play and at least you can actually get somewhere. And the easy Achievements at least make your Gamer Score slightly less pitiful.

8. Your online gaming preference is the Nintendo DS over XBL

Nintendo's patronly stance to online gaming means that your human interaction is reduced to the most basic of platitudes. But at least you don't have to listen to some potty-mouthed pre-teen hurling racist abuse at you, and if your game is going badly it's just a flick of the finger to turn the DS off and on and find a new opponent.

9. That menu text is awfully small…

Despite having a 40-inch 1080p plasma screen, you're really struggling to read the PS3's menu. And the subtitles in Dead Rising may as well have been in Arabic. Perhaps you'll pick up that copy of Eye Training for the DS after all.

10. You wonder what the hell you're even doing playing GTA IV

For the love of God, I could be half-way through my life. Why am I driving a virtual girlfriend across a virtual bridge into a virtual city to watch a virtual comedian, when I could actually be doing the real thing? I'm never going to get those 15 minutes back…


11. You couldn't care less about XMB in PS3

Why on earth would I want to talk to someone while I'm playing? And please Sony, don't introduce 'Trophies' – the 360 already broadcasts my lack of gaming finesse for all the word to see, I really don't need any further embarrassment.

12. You didn't get upset about the last 11

Welcome to the club, grandad.