Next week I'm taking vacation time. I've already informed both my jobs, put in the required forms, and wrapped up all the loose ends. I'm ready for my week off. I'm ready to explore the countryside, visit exotic locales, meet fascinating new people, and embark on fantastic journeys. The place I've chosen to visit on my vacation in Cyrodiil, the Imperial Provence of Tamriel. There's only one slight problem: It doesn't exist.
Well, not in the real world, anyway... you see, I've taken time off to play a computer game. "The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion" hits store shelves on March 21st, and I plan on being there first thing. Now before you scrunch your collective eyebrows and judge me, let me explain myself.
This is my hobby. This is what I do in my spare time. Some people go fishing, some people travel, some people play sports. I like to marvel at wonderful 3D graphics, pit myself against cunning AI enemies, and team up with friends to outwit the opposition. Yes, today's society views computer gaming somewhere between D&D gaming and being a trekkie, especially at my age, but the truth is, I enjoy it. Sure, I'd love to travel the world, meet 'actual' fascinating people, and go off on real-life adventures, but that costs considerably more money than my $50 game. $50, mind you, that gives me an average of 20-30 hours of enjoyment, compared to say, a movie which is $10 for +/- 2 hours of questionable enjoyment.
So, yes, I took off to play a computer game. Why a whole week?? Why not just a day or two? Well, simply put, this is a very unique game. It's the sequel to Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, which in my book is one of the all-time greatest RPG's of all time. It's completely open-ended, which means that you have total freedom to go exploring throughout the world without being restricted by a linear storyline. I've been anticipating this game since it's announcement back in 2004, and once I have it, I know myself well enough to know that I'd be way too preoccupied to actually get any work done, and the hour or so I'd manage to squeeze in after work every night would only serve to frustrate me. So when you think about it, I'm actually being a RESPONSIBLE adult by taking off! At least, that's how I'M rationalizing it.
Besides, I do plan on doing other things during my time off… I plan on getting through a ton of DVD's that I have yet to watch, like the Matrix Trilogy with it's 10 discs of bonus materials, and possibly start my first season of Oz which I've had since Christmas. I'd also like to throw some things up on eBay, to contribute to my "Get Paul Out Of Debt" fund. And if I'm lucky, I might even get a blog or two written and posted. So, you see, it's not all fun and games.
Mostly, yes, but not all.