Why Boredom in Games is a Good Thing

Have you ever been playing a game and have been bored during the game? Well this is actually a good thing, and here's why.

You are playing an open-world RPG like Skyrim or Dragon Age: Inquisition, or an MMORPG, or a simulation game like Euro Truck Simulator 2 or Elite: Dangerous, you suddenly find yourself getting bored while playing. This isn't something wrong with the game. Oh contraire, it's something very right. Boredom in games is good, and let's talk about why.

Is this you at any point while playing a game?

But I'm Bored!

Without boredom, the human brain would not strive to find something interesting.

At its most basic, boredom is the starting block of creativity. Without boredom, the human brain would not strive to find something interesting. On the flip side, if your brain has a constant stimulus, it will very quickly get bored with this too. Call of Duty, and many games of its genre, often suffer from this, just like with high-octane action films. As you are constantly being bombarded with big bombastic explosions, and thrilling set pieces, I'm sure you find yourself getting numb to this and thus getting bored.

Yet, in an MMORPG, say World of Warcraft. In this, you may get bored when the next 10 tasks are fetch quests, and the preceding 30 were also, this can easily get very boring. But then out of nowhere a dragon appears, or some sort of giant set piece, you're adrenaline spikes. You then want more, so you go about looking for it, getting bored again. And later finding something else.

What am I getting at?

Having constant bombardment of things can make you numb to them, so when something amazing happens it's suddenly dull, as it's no more special than anything before it. Take the scene in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, where the Eiffel Tower collapses, because of all the other set pieces before, that specific scene didn't feel at all special.

It's all about having to wait for that thrilling moment...

Now take Elite: Dangerous, when hunting for your target, it can take anywhere from 10 minutes to 3 hours. If it takes 3 hours it's a very long and boring task. But what happens when you finally find the all-elusive target? Action, a sudden blast of excitement, gunfire and explosions. That moment feels special and you will remember it. It's all about having to wait for that thrilling moment which makes boredom a good thing. When you get the pay off everything before just seems worth it.

Constant brain stimulation can lead to your brain getting lazy, no longer seeking out new and exciting things. Allow yourself get bored from time to time, you will be better off for it.

What does boredom in games mean to you? You know where the comments are, and how to type, so type some responses in those boxes.

Credit for GIF of Emma Stone.

Featured Correspondent

-- Games are a passion as well as a hobby. Other writing of mine found on at www.scrncheat.com

Published Jan. 31st 2015
  • DedicatedDark
    Well, I really have gotten bored of DAI after about 30 hours in. I guess you are pretty right, I still haven't fought a single dragon. I better go fight one now and get my adrenaline pumping again.
  • Rothalack
    Master O' Bugs
    Well put!

    It's very true, I raid Tues, Thurs and Sundays in WoW. The off days are used for the more boring routine kind of things just in preparation for raid days. When the raid does finally come, it's 3 hours of high octane fun, team work, and large rewards, aka dead bosses.
  • Pierre Fouquet
    Featured Correspondent
    Any Leroy's in your team?
  • StayNoLonger
    Featured Contributor
    If there weren't boring parts in games when would I be able to catch up on podcasts. I've been playing quite a bit of Star Wars: The Old Republic, It's easier to handle the grind quests when you have something to occupy your brain. But it does help when you have that boredom then it's like A DRAGON! Where will you be when the acid hits?
  • Pierre Fouquet
    Featured Correspondent
    Well I will be at my desk... having hallucinations. :) But really... yep, grinding is a massive issue in MMOs, but they do add a large lull, which is needed in games.
  • Si_W
    This is precisely why I take no notice of anyone who calls any game boring.

    Life is full of lulls, the explosive bits can be high or low. You have to take them as they come and roll with them. Regardless of how you deal with them, life is what you make it and carries on regardless.

    A bit like gaming.
  • Pierre Fouquet
    Featured Correspondent
    Interesting. :) Thanks for sharing!
  • Autumn Fish
    Featured Correspondent
    Never really thought about it like that! That's pretty rad ;D
  • Pierre Fouquet
    Featured Correspondent
    Tank yee.

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