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Lonely gamer doesn't know how to make friends anymore.


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I don't have any gamer friends where I live and my wife, bless her, isn't a gamer either. But I play a lot and don't feel like I have anyone to talk to about those games. I think the loneliness connected to one of my favorite hobbies is really starting to have an effect on me. I used to have friends where I lived before who played with and talked about them with me, but I've moved a bunch since and at 30, making new friends feels impossible. College really spoiled me and now adulthood seems so empty as a gamer, even though I still love playing! My Steam friends list is my two uncles and one friend from home, an they're never on. I tend to be a bit more depressed than most, but it just seems different with this. No one to relate to, or talk to.  Is there a site/forum/game I should be spending time in? I've tried twitch, but it just seems to enhance the loneliness (does that make sense?Maybe I don't twitch right!) Am I just whining about nothing and should just shut up and play. 

I'm not trying to sound like a cry baby or throw a pity party. I just live far out in rural country and can't shake this loneliness and don't know how to fix it. 

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It happens in your 30s. You just keep looking around local and online as best you can and fill it up where you can. Get outside the box and try things you probably wouldn't have tried before.

Pretty hard to be more specific as to what things those are from there, but with the will to move can inevitably reveal the path to get there.

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Making new friends as an adult after high school/college is actually really difficult. You're not put into situations where you're forced to interact with peers on a regular basis. For gaming friends though, I would suggest meetup.com. There always seems to be some kind of local board game group set up where you can go hang out with people and play board games. This can translate pretty easily into video games. You can also try to create your own gaming group. Maybe contact a local library and see if you can reserve a room with some TVs and set up a weekly gaming thing where folks can drop by and play some Halo.

Also, and this is kind of obvious, but there's OC ReMix too. We're a pretty solid community of gamers. Lots of people are real-life friends because of OC ReMix. Not necessarily local, but I know I see my OCR friends almost monthly nowadays due to get-togethers and conventions. Plenty of folks in the community are playing games online like Overwatch, Hearthstone, Final Fantasy XIV, World of Warcraft, etc. We had a pretty active Team Fortress 2 community a few years ago, though I'm not sure how much people play that anymore.

Your location says "nomadic." Where are you actually located? Maybe there's some OCR folks out near you.

 

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26 minutes ago, DarkeSword said:

Making new friends as an adult after high school/college is actually really difficult. You're not put into situations where you're forced to interact with peers on a regular basis. For gaming friends though, I would suggest meetup.com. There always seems to be some kind of local board game group set up where you can go hang out with people and play board games. This can translate pretty easily into video games. You can also try to create your own gaming group. Maybe contact a local library and see if you can reserve a room with some TVs and set up a weekly gaming thing where folks can drop by and play some Halo.

Also, and this is kind of obvious, but there's OC ReMix too. We're a pretty solid community of gamers. Lots of people are real-life friends because of OC ReMix. Not necessarily local, but I know I see my OCR friends almost monthly nowadays due to get-togethers and conventions. Plenty of folks in the community are playing games online like Overwatch, Hearthstone, Final Fantasy XIV, World of Warcraft, etc. We had a pretty active Team Fortress 2 community a few years ago, though I'm not sure how much people play that anymore.

Your location says "nomadic." Where are you actually located? Maybe there's some OCR folks out near you.

 

I'm in the rural, lost parts of Western, NY, 90 minutes out of Buffalo, Rochester and Erie, PA. Moved here for my job (teen librarian) but haven't really settled in the year I've been here.

You're probably right about meetup. I've gone on it before and there's been nothing happening near me, but like Meteo Xavier said, I'm probably going to have get out of my
comfort zone and make it happen. No reason I can't start the meetup.

And I really should check into the big multiplayers. Outside of League, I don't play too many MMO-types. Maybe it's time to suck it up and play them.

Also, thanks for confirming 30+ isn't an easy time to make friends. Its nice knowing it's not just me.

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i've bounced around a lot since college, and honestly the only place i consistently met a few people i could be friends with was at our church, which we're pretty involved with. we've been in rochester for probably 3.5 years now but i don't think i'd say i have more than maybe four friends total that i'm really into spending time with consistently who are local, and the age ranges are from 24-33 as a 30yo guy, and they're all from church. i've got coworkers my age but they're no more than acquaintences. i've found i don't have as much time for friends as i used to thanks to kids, so i value more spending time with people i care about rather than tons of shallow interactions. we'll meet a couple and have dinner together once or twice, but to be honest we're pretty picky with who we care to spend our time with at this point :< i just would rather spend time with my wife than most other people.

imo, playing games isn't a great way to get to know someone. a mutual interest in games is definitely a foundation for a friendship, but it's hard to get to know someone during a mentally intense game.

if you don't mind me asking, where in western ny are you? we've lived in a lot of areas in W/CNY over the last eight years so i bet we were near you at some point. send me a pm if you don't want to say it here, i browsed your website but didn't see a town name.

bardicknowledge, oa, and a few others play league several nights a week. you can add me when you get a chance, my current name is "i buy movespeed". we just use skype to talk during games. there's an ocr clan too but no one's ever online who's in it.

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Could be worse, you could be married with children.  It's crazy difficult to make friends at that point, especially ones that have anything in common with you except that they also have kids around the same age.  And of course making time for anything other than childcare is difficult to begin with.  I could probably never buy another game again and still not get through my backlog--and that's just counting the really amazing games on the top of my list, and not the random stuff I got through Humble Bundles and the like.

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17 hours ago, duskvstweak said:

Am I just whining about nothing and should just shut up and play. 

I'm not trying to sound like a cry baby or throw a pity party. I just live far out in rural country and can't shake this loneliness and don't know how to fix it. 

I've been feeling very similar lately myself, and to be honest, this is one of the reasons I joined OCR.

I can't even call myself a true gamer anymore; I don't have the time or money for a lot of the new stuff coming out (PS4 is still over $400 new here in Canada), and I can only play so many remakes of first-person shooters or GoW-style action/adventure before it feels like I'm playing the same game over and over again. I now call myself a retro gamer - and having a wide-spanning, intricate knowledge of a lot of games 10 years old or older does not make for very interesting conversation in many places anymore.

Like you, I just stopped mentioning it because it feels like no one cares - and like you, I keep playing because I still really enjoy it. I'm a big fan of storylines and immersive plots, or games where you have to piece together the setting over two or three games, as the developers established the canon. For example, Castlevania is not what you would call immersive plot-wise in each game - maybe one or three lines of text - but piece it together over the series, and you have a pretty engaging plot. Now try talking about that to someone who's never heard of Castlevania!

prophetik and Mind Wanderer are telling my biography. I'm married with children as well, don't have much time to get out, very picky over who I spend my time with, long list of games I want that I may never play. The best part is whenever I get used to something or get a good rhythm going, everything changes again. It's a tough thing to plan around, much less build any sort of schedule with others around.

As for solutions to this, I think Meteo Xavier has it right in the first step being breaking out of the comfort zone. The whole idea of making friends starts by showing up, right? As Darkesword said, OCR is a good place to start, but not the only place you can go. Maybe joining an online league will help too.

One other thing I have found to be somewhat cathartic to me is writing. It doesn't have to be about anything in particular; just the act of writing SOMETHING is a release for me. Not a cure, by any means, but for me, it helps. If you're not into writing, perhaps something expressive in another form like art or maybe MUSIC would be somewhat more up your alley.  Just a suggestion.

Anyway, you are obviously not alone in how you feel here. I hope one of us is helpful to you. Feel free to drop me a line through the forum here if you ever want to chat.

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5 hours ago, MindWanderer said:

Could be worse, you could be married with children.  It's crazy difficult to make friends at that point, especially ones that have anything in common with you except that they also have kids around the same age.  And of course making time for anything other than childcare is difficult to begin with.  I could probably never buy another game again and still not get through my backlog--and that's just counting the really amazing games on the top of my list, and not the random stuff I got through Humble Bundles and the like.

Actually, one of my friends I have around here is a recent parent, which means hanging out with him has been almost a no-go too! Kids to make it busy (like you needed me to confirm that for you).

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4 hours ago, The Nikanoru said:

I've been feeling very similar lately myself, and to be honest, this is one of the reasons I joined OCR.

I can't even call myself a true gamer anymore; I don't have the time or money for a lot of the new stuff coming out (PS4 is still over $400 new here in Canada), and I can only play so many remakes of first-person shooters or GoW-style action/adventure before it feels like I'm playing the same game over and over again. I now call myself a retro gamer - and having a wide-spanning, intricate knowledge of a lot of games 10 years old or older does not make for very interesting conversation in many places anymore.

Like you, I just stopped mentioning it because it feels like no one cares - and like you, I keep playing because I still really enjoy it. I'm a big fan of storylines and immersive plots, or games where you have to piece together the setting over two or three games, as the developers established the canon. For example, Castlevania is not what you would call immersive plot-wise in each game - maybe one or three lines of text - but piece it together over the series, and you have a pretty engaging plot. Now try talking about that to someone who's never heard of Castlevania!

prophetik and Mind Wanderer are telling my biography. I'm married with children as well, don't have much time to get out, very picky over who I spend my time with, long list of games I want that I may never play. The best part is whenever I get used to something or get a good rhythm going, everything changes again. It's a tough thing to plan around, much less build any sort of schedule with others around.

As for solutions to this, I think Meteo Xavier has it right in the first step being breaking out of the comfort zone. The whole idea of making friends starts by showing up, right? As Darkesword said, OCR is a good place to start, but not the only place you can go. Maybe joining an online league will help too.

One other thing I have found to be somewhat cathartic to me is writing. It doesn't have to be about anything in particular; just the act of writing SOMETHING is a release for me. Not a cure, by any means, but for me, it helps. If you're not into writing, perhaps something expressive in another form like art or maybe MUSIC would be somewhat more up your alley.  Just a suggestion.

Anyway, you are obviously not alone in how you feel here. I hope one of us is helpful to you. Feel free to drop me a line through the forum here if you ever want to chat.

You're not wrong about the writing, which is a big reason I even started this post. And it's been extremely encouraging hearing that this isn't an isolated experience. I guess this is just part of life. Also, you're in the right for wanting to talk about Castlevania! 

Thanks for the advice and encouragement. This whole thread has been very helpful too me today.

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7 hours ago, MindWanderer said:

Could be worse, you could be married with children.  It's crazy difficult to make friends at that point, especially ones that have anything in common with you except that they also have kids around the same age.  And of course making time for anything other than childcare is difficult to begin with.  I could probably never buy another game again and still not get through my backlog--and that's just counting the really amazing games on the top of my list, and not the random stuff I got through Humble Bundles and the like.

On the other hand, children are potential gaming buddies you literally make. Kids still like to game, don't they?

Throwing this out there because the subject of being a parent on OCR tends to skew towards "Ugh, don't have kids, they always take time away from games/hobbies." - It's not that bad. Parents find time to play games too, they just have to sacrifice some of it and work-around it so they can also have the deeply life-enriching experience of building a family. Certainly your parents still had hobbies when you were growing up, right? They didn't just split all their time between working and taking care of you.

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37 minutes ago, Meteo Xavier said:

On the other hand, children are potential gaming buddies you literally make. Kids still like to game, don't they?

Throwing this out there because the subject of being a parent on OCR tends to skew towards "Ugh, don't have kids, they always take time away from games/hobbies." - It's not that bad. Parents find time to play games too, they just have to sacrifice some of it and work-around it so they can also have the deeply life-enriching experience of building a family. Certainly your parents still had hobbies when you were growing up, right? They didn't just split all their time between working and taking care of you.

I did play a lot of Donkey Kong Country, Mario Kart and Street Fighter II with my mom as a 7 year old...

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my kids are in bed by 7pm every night. i usually hang out with my wife till 9ish, and then play games until 1130. it's not six hours in a row like college...but i haven't done that since i was married, since i like my wife and would prefer she stay my wife. i never really gamed during the day while my wife was awake anyways, so it's not like i lost much.

kids hamper social outings, since you've got less time that they're awake to do things during the week. they don't hamper tend to my gaming much.

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I play league almost daily - and am always looking for new people to play with. Feel free to drop me an invite anytime you see me on. And totally agree on the whole friends thing, I'll be hitting 33 this year, and our friendship circle is like..non-existent. I need to make some new friends soon.

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26 minutes ago, k-wix said:

I play league almost daily - and am always looking for new people to play with. Feel free to drop me an invite anytime you see me on. And totally agree on the whole friends thing, I'll be hitting 33 this year, and our friendship circle is like..non-existent. I need to make some new friends soon.

Yeah, the more I moved around during and post-college, the smaller my friends group got, especially locally. And I'll look for you next time I'm on.

 

 

19 hours ago, prophetik music said:

mo, playing games isn't a great way to get to know someone. a mutual interest in games is definitely a foundation for a friendship, but it's hard to get to know someone during a mentally intense game.

You're right, and it's part of the reason I've had a hard time going to game stores and joining in. I get to play the games, sure, but I've made almost zero connections. So much time is spent learning game and playing, I don't have time to even ask questions.

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I know what you're feeling.  My best gaming buddy from elementary school onward gave up the hobby two months after he got married just over a year ago. It was an awkward day when he gave me his giant Crate o' Games and said "I'm done."  It's sad but I don't think it's possible to have gaming friends after college outside of OCR and other VG/VGM communities of course. For a lot of people, life and survival becomes their game once they fall from their parents nest. Some of the best friends i've made in my thirties didn't ever want to play games when we got together, and that goes for former gamers too.  

There is definitely a "this person just wastes time" stigma to people finding out that you like to spend your free time gaming. Honestly, I don't understand why it's more  socially favorable to read a book, watch a movie or engage in some other non-productive non-gaming activity.  This is why i'm glad to be a part of this community because for the most part we are all very like minded toward the hobby/art.  

..on the plus side I did turn that Crate o' Games into a few hundred bucks on Amazon.  

 

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Tangentially related:  I am the OC ReMix clan leader for League of Legends -- I am RTBardic there, and I am on usually 4x a week (almost always with one of prophetik, OA, or newt).  I know I added the OP to the clan, but anyone else should feel free to ask for a clan invite.  It's a good way to find people who are online -- and there are a lot of us here who play League.  

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On 8/31/2016 at 8:10 PM, Meteo Xavier said:

On the other hand, children are potential gaming buddies you literally make. Kids still like to game, don't they?

Throwing this out there because the subject of being a parent on OCR tends to skew towards "Ugh, don't have kids, they always take time away from games/hobbies." - It's not that bad. Parents find time to play games too, they just have to sacrifice some of it and work-around it so they can also have the deeply life-enriching experience of building a family. Certainly your parents still had hobbies when you were growing up, right? They didn't just split all their time between working and taking care of you.

Oh, yeah.  A friend who moved to another state made me very jealous by playing Portal 2 with his daughter.  But my daughter just turned 2 years old, and all our current friends' kids are no older than 4, so it's gonna be a while.  Believe me, I'm constantly evaluating them to see when they might be able to handle even something as simple as a LEGO game.  I have a long list of co-op games I want to try with my daughter when she's old enough, and hope she'll be interested.

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On 9/2/2016 at 9:17 AM, prophetik music said:

wait, kwix, you still play? haven't seen you on in ages. i guess we play at different times.

Yes! I generally work in the mornings, so I play in the mid-day when I get off, before my wife gets home. I play some nights too, but usually I'm in bed fairly early, because I'm old and sleeping is the best. Not sure if I have your summoner name or not.

Summoner name is k wìx

Also, if anyone is curious about getting into the game, I love teaching it to newer players. There is a ton to learn.

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