The Daily Grind: What’s your unhealthiest real-life habit brought on by MMOs?

I’ve always had a hard time going to sleep at a reasonable hour. MMOs, though, have helped make that functionally impossible for me. It started when I was playing Final Fantasy XI on dial-up and could only play later in the day, at which point I decided that it made more sense to stay up late and be tired (or take a nap in the middle of the day) than to go to bed early and lose out on playtime. Then there was the period of my life when I was working second shift and had a World of Warcraft expansion to play with…

Long story short, my sleep schedule has always been bad, but MMOs have certainly made my sleeping habits worse. And I don’t think I’m entirely alone; I think all of us have bad habits that MMOs can exacerbate. Eating poorly or not enough, not getting enough sleep, getting too competitive, things like that. So what about you, dear readers? What’s your unhealthiest real-life habit brought on by MMOs?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
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52 Comments on "The Daily Grind: What’s your unhealthiest real-life habit brought on by MMOs?"

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Malcolm Swoboda

I think the worst is sleep. I’m going through my 20s, still expecting to be going to sleep 2-4AM some days (and 12-1AM other days), when I should be sleeping at midnight, latest. Then again, I’m generally night owl, so MMOs just give more encouragement to do what I’ll always be doing sometimes anyway.

Another is that too much setting is starting to have its effect on me. I’m trying to counteract that with more breaks, occasional jogs, and seeing about signing up at my school’s gym this year.

Reader
Alex Malone

Definitely sitting too much.

I was very active when younger and whilst I enjoyed gaming, I used to fit gaming around the rest of my life. When I hit uni, gaming was relegated to purely split screen multiplayer (too many stoner sessions playing mario kart on N64).

Then I got the MMO bug, and suddenly every evening was spent playing MMOs. Would only go out for nights out, so meant evenings were either unhealthy gaming / snacking, or unhealthy drinking.

It’s been 4 years since I’ve had an MMO home but still fighting to control this bad habit! It’s just too damn easy to come home from work and veg out all evening.

Reader
Suikoden

First I have to say, I loved reading all the responses. Reminds me that there are people like me in the real world, lol.

I think what developed it into an unhealthy habit, is now that I have a family, I work all day, do the family thing until the kids go to bed, then have to drink caffeine so I can play my MMO, otherwise I’d fall asleep before the title screen hits. Overdoing caffeine just to get gaming time in is not the healthiest thing according to my doctor.
I try to explain that no MMO gaming is much more unhealthy. :)

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Peregrine Falcon

Reading MassivelyOP is the first thing I do when I come home from work. Every. Single. Day.

Does that count?

Reader
starbuck1771

Micro-transactions , unhealthy eating, and a lack of sleep. :P

Reader
Bryan Correll

Eating poorly…., not getting enough sleep,

I can’t blame MMO’s for that. Cause I had those habits before MMO’s existed.

Reader
Ahelms Tub

I don’t go outside.

Reader
Loyal Patron
Rottenrotny

Hot Pockets and beer?

Mmmmm Hot Pockets and beer.

Reader
Chris Brown-DeMoreno

Skipping the school/work/gym to make practically no progress in whatever game it is.

Reader
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CthulhuDawg

The worst is after you do that and then realize you haven’t left *insert home city here* and have just been hitting space bar jumping around the auction house and chatting with randos and guildies.

Reader
A Dad Supreme

“What’s your unhealthiest real-life habit brought on by MMOs?”
======
The obvious… sitting in one place for too many hours is bad for your health. Puts too much stress on the rectum.

Someone needs to develop an assless-gaming chair.

Reader
starbuck1771

Got hemorrhoids do ya? Sitting too much will do that ask any real trucker. :P

Reader
Dreema

I remember sitting at my desk at work with a thumping headache and yawning so wide my mouth hurt – all because I’d been up till the early hours of the morning raiding with my guild back in WoW during TBC. One day I just wondered to myself why I put myself through it – going on 4-5 hours sleep a night just to raid, an activity I wasn’t even particularly fond of – and gave up raiding right there and then. I enjoyed the game a lot more once raiding was off the table.

Sarigar
Reader
Sarigar

The unhealthiest habit I’ve picked up from MMOs is leaping thirty feet across a room to attack someone I perceive to be a threat to me. Turns out that is illegal pretty much everywhere.

Reader
Grim🎃 Darhk

excessive coffee addiction/sleep deprivation.

Nibbana
Reader
Nibbana

Constantly refreshing the Massively Overpowered tab in my browser?

Minimalistway
Reader
Minimalistway

Single long focus on one thing, i forget the world around me and focus on playing, used to be bad years ago, not so much today, but i used to forget anything not related to what ever i’m enjoying now, like reading 7 large volumes book in 3 days, or first time i played an MMO after years of just reading, spent a week doing nothing but playing, almost forogt eating! not a healthy habit.

Reader
Ravven

Definitely too much sitting! I do book cover art as my day job which means I sit at the PC all day. Add gaming at night and it’s too much sitting to be healthy. :(

Edited to add: I would LOVE to see a proper VR MMO once they work out the walking/running in place. That would be hella fun and good exercise as well.

Reader
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squidgod2000

Yep. Graphic designer by day, MMOer by night…and weekend…and in the morning before work…

What’s worse is that my chair at home is shit, but it was $600 shit so I’ve got that sunk cost fallacy going on. At work I’ve at least got an adjustable desk and a good chair.

Reader
Melissa McDonald

me too, it makes me laugh when I see reviewers for the Wii, Kinect, and now VR complain about sore arms or too much exertion. Just like pouring salt on a slug, haha.

Reader
Ravven

Aside from immersion and fun, that’s what I want from it! Who wants to run on a treadmill, I would much rather swing a sword or run through a fantasy city (or around a spaceship, for that matter)!

taradyne
Reader
taradyne

Too much sitting. I already sit a lot in my job and gaming makes it worse.

Reader
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John Bagnoli

Reading MMO articles instead of working :D

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

Definitely too much sitting. In college, it was losing sleep, but almost no MMO is good enough to make me miss sleep now since I have little ones that suck away all my Zs. I spent a long time trying to stand and even do light aerobics (like marching in place) while playing WoW and other light MMOs, but I found it surprisingly hard to concentrate on both — we’d pull and I’d need to focus on the fight. Maybe a treadmill would work better.

Reader
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squidgod2000

I definitely don’t lose sleep for MMOs anymore. Been years since I’ve played a game that’s worth my feeling like shit the next day.

Reader
Stropp

1. Exercise, as in lack of.

2. Too much sitting. Related to exercise, but as a programmer, there’s a lot of sitting involved, and gaming didn’t help.

3. Procrastination. It’s too easy to get my game on rather than doing things I ought to be doing.

Reader
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Space Captain Zor

Writing “Transmogrification” on my bathroom mirror and changing outfits 8 times a day

Polyanna
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Loyal Patron
Polyanna

Drinking before every fight.

Reader
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Jack Pipsam

I suppose it would be sleep. Because of timezones the most active times for anything on the internet is like my time between 2-8 AM. Also internet is at its fastest because most people in the area would be sleeping.

I haven’t felt it yet, but I think I have until 24/5 before my body decides to just die and slap me across the face for being the worst when it comes to sleep.
Partly due to not having any actual form of a sleep schedule, sometimes I need to be up at 5-7 AM so I can be in the city for uni or internship early in the morning. But other days my shifts are 6 PM so I can sleep in until 4 in the after-noon.

One day I’ll wake up early, but the day before I slept in until like 2. I don’t have a body clock and I am just taking advantage of it while I can. I’ve been this way since high-school. I suspect once I actually get a real job and am done with uni then i’d kick into an actual schedule, at least that’s the plan.

Reader
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Veldan

I don’t know how you manage. As 25 year old I can say that I have definitely hit the point where I need to sleep at night and have some regularity in my schedule.

Reader
Thomas

I’m normally pretty frugal when it comes to MMO/gaming in general, but I’m also a major “altaholic”, so I’ve been spending real bucks in Wildstar, my MMO du jour, on additional character slots. Kind of wasteful, but I just can’t help myself.

It’s unhealthy for my bank account. Does that count as “unhealthy”?

Reader
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Pandalulz

The sleep thing is definitely an issue I struggle with, but I wouldn’t say it’s an MMO thing specifically. Ever since we had a kid, almost all of my gaming, movie and TV watching, etc has moved to after the kid and wife go to sleep, so I can’t really start until after 10PM or so, and I will have to be awake at 6AM no matter what happens after that.
My one real struggle with MMOs is that they tend to take the time that I would be playing other, probably more fulfilling single player games. MMOs are the comfort food I fall back on because they are easy and mindless for the most part. I don’t have to worry about turning the sound on, the dialog is mostly pointless gibberish, and very little of the combat is more interesting than mashing the same combo of buttons over and over. And because of that, I lose out on games that would have a more immersive story and more involved and interesting combat.

Reader
Melissa McDonald

time wasted that could have been spent far more productively.

But there is a reason why the windshield is so large and the rear view mirror is so small. What is in front of you is far more important than what is behind. Don’t waste time on regrets.

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Veldan

Words of wisdom

Reader
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Alex Willis

Definitely share some experiences with Eliot in this regard. Because of work and home life, I often do not get the opportunity to sit down at the PC until 10-11 pm. When I do sit down, I like to play for at least 2 hours — otherwise, you can’t accomplish much in an MMO (and you certainly can’t raid). But I still have to be up by 7 am the next morning. So if I get 6 hours of sleep a night, I’m lucky. But I *make* the luck, so it’s definitely a habit.

camren_rooke
Reader
camren_rooke

I come in to work, look around for the person with the yellow exclamation point over their head.

When I don’t see them, I sit at desk, without purpose.

Reader
wratts

Skipping the gym to complete “that last item for the daily”

Reader
Rick Mills

Sitting on my feet for hours on end. Seriously, I’ve developed a problem with poor circulation in my legs over the last few years. I know it seems easily fixable, but habits are hard to break…

Reader
MesaSage

Unsolicited advice here, take time out of your day to walk. Bad things come from poor leg circulation. Having desks jobs my whole life I avoided movement and paid the price. Now I walk a few miles each day. Big difference.

Reader
Rick Mills

Yep, my wife and I walk a couple of miles a day – started that last year and we love it, not just for the health reasons, but also for a break together!

Reader
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Pandalulz

I do this all the time and don’t even think about it. I go to get up and realize my feet are sound asleep and nearly fall over. It only happens when I’m sitting in my office chair at home as well, for some reason I don’t do it in the one at work. I assume it has something to do with the difference in my game-playing versus working posture.

Reader
Rick Mills

Same for me – at work I’m fine – just gaming I sit on my feet..

Reader
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Veldan

Uh, the unhealthiest is probably lack of sleep for me too. I still often stay up later than I planned, because of games, chat or random internet stuff. So cruel that there are only 24 hours in a day :(

Also, when I was in my MMO prime, I was physically very inactive (all I ever did was sit in chairs). I kicked that habit though, and am now far more active and in better shape than most people.

Reader
Hirku

Spending money on a product that can vanish forever at any time.

Reader
Duane Does not check email

…for no good reason other then the bean counters feel there could be more money elsewhere, maybe, not sure, but let’s kick this group of paying customers to the curb.

Reader
Ittybumpkin

That hurts me right in my City of Heroes spot

Reader
Sorenthaz

” at which point I decided that it made more sense to stay up late and be tired (or take a nap in the middle of the day) than to go to bed early and lose out on playtime”

Yeah that’s basically me and my sleep schedule around work. I’ve been slowly inching more time into it too because I value my free time VS work time, so now I regularly rely on an energy drink to help kick me into drive at work. Not the best habit to have but meh.

Reader
Alex

Not allowing my body proper sleep! Those days of waking up extra early to farm Titanium in Wintergrasp before work! These were actually some pretty fond memories that I still have but man did I introduce a bad habit.

Reader
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CthulhuDawg

I buy intangible items with tangible money.

Reader
Armsbend

Alcoholism, loss of friends and family, being unproductive, losing jobs and crippling depression. Off the top of my head.

Reader
Melissa McDonald

pretty raw and honest. God Bless you.

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