Solid Snake from Metal Gear Solid having put a guard to sleep.
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Adult Gamers: Do You Go Without Sleep to Game?

There simply aren’t enough waking hours in the day for everything. Unless, y’know, you make more waking hours. Sleep is for the weak, after all.

Like many adult gamers, I’ve been forced to choose between being a functional human being or sacrificing sleep in order to get my game time in.  The decision is one that can’t be made rashly when you’re a grown-up.

As a teenager, it was a no brainer.  If you were 5 hours into a gaming session past midnight and wanted to keep playing, what was the worst that could happen if you pressed on into the early hours?  Without the threat of being fired or your partner leaving you, the only risk would be poor academic performance at school.  And let’s be honest, school is for losers.

But seriously, the choice between gaming and sleep as an adult gamer feels like a much more serious decision with more pressing ramifications.  Some of us have partners, children, a job, or a pet dog named Frank who demands a walk at 5:30 AM every single day. As we grow up, we all have different responsibilities, and they eat into our free time and take away from our hobbies, such as gardening, or being a fucking boss in GTA Online.

Something has to give, so it may as well be sleep, right?

So, you’ve worked your job, spent time with your partner and kids, your mundane chores are completed and you’ve completed everything that needs completing today.  The problem is, it’s 10 PM; you have to be up for work at 6 AM, your 8 hours of sleep should start now.  The urge to game kicks in and it’s too strong to resist. “Just an hour,” you tell yourself as you grab the controller.

Suddenly you’re into the early hours of the morning.  You know you’ll regret it the next day, but it’s too late.  Might as well play one more game, right?

Sure enough, the next day comes and you feel like death, cursing Yesterday You for putting Today You in this situation. You find yourself sitting in front of your computer screen at work, eyeballs bleeding, head pounding, thinking one thing: Worth it. Totally worth it.

Now, I’ll admit, I don’t typically do this. I try to get two gaming nights a week where possible; one on Tuesday evening and one on Friday evening. Tuesday tends to run from 8 PM to 10:30 PM, whereas Friday can be an 8PM to 3AM if my eyes stay open long enough (not often – I’m a lightweight).

Personally, I try not to let gaming (or anything, really) affect my sleep to the point where I cannot function, but that’s not to say I’ve never done it. I’ve been guilty of a few sessions running into the early hours knowing full well that my alarm is set for a few hours’ time, but I try to keep those instances few and far between.

So, forsaking sleep for gaming – have you done it? Do you still do it?  Leave a comment!


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  1. Every Friday night sleep comes 2nd to gaming – makes Saturday a bit tough but I just keep busy and try forget about my pillow. My Wife is cool with it as long as i contribute over the weekend with my savages and generally weekend stuff.

  2. While I agree that PC gaming is basically the cheapest way of gaming when it comes to quantity, the reason many console gamers don’t want to play on PC don’t have to do with the price tag. Most fear Windows and drivers, general system maintenance and even changing the graphics settings in a game as being to complicated for them. They just want to switch on the console and start playing.

    And also I found out, that used retail games for XBox One often are way cheaper than download games in sales for PC. When I got the One I ended up buying a ton of games for it that I originally wanted to buy for PC.

    In the end, if one only plays one or two games a year a console is cheaper. If one is an avid gamer they should check out PC, simply because it offers way more options and possibilities. For example the possibility to play with 140FPS or even stuff like modding.

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Written by John

I'm a 35-year-old gamer, clinging onto the gamepad despite real-life responsibilities trying to pull me kicking and screaming away. I created GrownGaming to meet other adult gamers. Nice to meet you.