Hey guys - just want to introduce my self. I'm 39 years, almost married (engaged) have no kids (yet) and work in the IT industry. Been playing games since a kid, but nothing too out of control untill about some 8-9 years ago when I got divorced and started isolating my self from everyone and discovered a game called World of Warcraft.
I got addicted pretty quickly and soon WoW was my life, I was a hard-core raider and my real life was falling apart - I was massively gaining weight (an issue I have since a kid), was missing work to play (would lie to my boss that I was just going through depression) and isolating my self from my friends and family. Some 3-4 years later I found my self "wiping" (dying in the game) hundreds of time to the same boss, trying to be the "realm first", in a complete madness situation, I'd get home and spend hours and hours doing exactly the same first 15-20 minutes trying to kill a very hard boss. Anyways, I think at that point I just got so annoyed with the game (especially after another guild beat the boss before us) that I started thinking this was all pointless. I don't know, I think it was the start. Eventually my own guild (where I made great friends - something I had lost in my real life) kinda fell apart and the game wasn't just as much fun. Plus during the same time I had reached bottom with my obesity issue (was over 360lbs) and decided to join a weight loss program, which was on a Wednesday night - one of the days I'd raid (play in group), and thus I decided to quite from that raid group and just try to play it casually.
Eventually I got frustrated with not being able to keep up with my buddies raiding and the game finally started loosing its grip on me. One day I decided to delete all my characters (had 11!) and account, it was painful, I cried but managed to do it. However, this game is so sneaky that it makes it extremely hard for you to delete your account, you have to send a physical letter to someplace in Europe so I gave up, at least I deleted the characters and wasn't paying for the account anymore, however, about a year later one of my gaming friends contacted me and convinced me to come back - as I didn't know, you can actually restore deleted characters! So I rejoined, started playing again but with the commitment - to my friend - that I wouldn't raid or play "hardcode". That I managed to do, however, I was still playing a lot of it casually, logging daily to chat with my close buddies so the addiction continue. I got to a point where I'd take my laptop to work and play during a lunch break, sitting in my car with connected through my phone, something completely ridiculous when you think of it.
Then something great happened, I decided to go on a epic trek in Asia for a month and then take another couple months off to spend some relaxing time in another country, without a laptop! In that trek I had a lot of time to think and reflect, and one of the thinks I decided it was that I wanted to get back into being in a relationship - that I would actively face my past demons and purpose to find love again. As destiny goes, close to the end of my 3 month vacation someone I knew contacted me and we once I got back to my country we met - and just like that, I found someone special which I'm still with today (2 years!) and engaged. Since that time when I went on vacation I haven't played WoW - I just don't feel like and to be honest. All was going well, at least I thought so.
Then about 3-4 months ago I saw in the news that WoW released a new version and I got itchy. I don't know exactly why, but one of the most special (to me) times in the game was the launch night of a new version, so I guess nostalgia made me feel crap again. Then to make things worse, a couple other friends (that are from my original country) pressured and convinced me to buy an Xbox to play with them, remotely. I had a long conversation with my fiance about it - she know about my past struggles - and we agreed that I would give it a try, and observe if I'd get addicted again. I thought I wouldn't because most Xbox games have an end, or I thought so. Initially I played PES (soccer game) with my buddies but then eventually heard about Monster Hunter World (MHW) from an old WoW buddy and decided to give it a try - boy do I regret.
Ever since I bought that game, all those feelings I'd get from playing WoW are back full-speed when I play MHW, its been a little over 4 months and I already have 250+ hours of played time. Initially I was playing it casually but lately thinks got more and more intense. These last couple of weeks I actually started playing at night, after my fiance goes to bed - I will sneak it out of bed to play, and sometimes play till 3-4am - considering that I have to go to work the next day, you can imagine how this is creating havoc in my life! My fiance doesn't know much bad my addiction has become, I've been hiding pretty well from her, playing it cool as if everything if all right, but deep down I'm scared, worried and very tired.
This past Sunday I started googling for help, and found the Game Quitter videos on Youtube and a lot of things he say make completely sense. I understand how just like WoW, my 'achievements' on MHW are completely imaginary and pointless. But the "adrenaline shots" I get while playing this game is hard to not want it more and more. This addiction is affecting my life again and I'm afraid to quit it, just like with WoW. Yesterday I found out how to setup parental controls on my own xbox account and have reduced my play time, however, last night I ended up bypassing those restrictions twice and played again till very late (3am).
I know the right thing to do is just quit, but I don't know if I want or actually can right now. Deep down I know what I need to do, but I'm afraid to do it. I'm probably deceiving my self thinking I can control this, maybe I will once I get bored - that was the case with many other RPG games in the past, even Diablos wasn't a big deal for me. Maybe once I reach a high enough level I'll have done all I wanted from this game and I'll slow down... At least these are the things I'm telling my self, much the same way I learned to control my food addiction I'd like to learn to control my game addiction. Do you guys think this is possible? Or am I just fooling my self?
PS: I have a few things I'd like to pursue in life, but after this game, they just don't have the same appeal anymore.
In any case, thanks for listening and appreciate any thoughts/suggestions.