A New Game
Finally, I’ve found my next game. The one I’ve been waiting for. There hasn’t been a good game I’ve wanted to grind for a while now. While I realise this isn’t actually a game, I can’t help but notice all the similarities between SCA as a game compared to other games I’ll grind and play to get to a high rank. I like to look at things through several different lenses and angles before coming to a conclusion or opinion about it. That’s probably quite common with many adults, but it just so happens that I’m a gamer. Been one since I was 5 and first played Crash Bandicoot on my brother’s PS2. And so, I’ve noticed that one of the larger lenses in my mind is one I use with games.
This ‘gaming’ lense has been a tool I’ve made over years of gaming, in which I use it to become good at any game I pick up and play. I’m competitive-ish and so I naturally want to reach the high ranks of any shooter I play. However, it’s not just the rank itself that I want to reach, it’s reaching those ranks with friends. The journey alone to me just isn’t as satisfying. When I compare this to SCA and my life I realise that this pattern with gaming translates. Therefore, as I’m writing this, it’s become clearer to me that my focus this year isn’t just on the destination at the end of the year.
What I’ve realised after this past week, is that my mechanics(skills) are currently shit, as it usually tends to be when I start a new game. But after going through the past week, just going through the process with each day’s briefs, has revealed many gaps in my knowledge and skills which I know I want to fill. At the beginning, I didn’t even know what I didn’t know, but luckily I think this past week has fleshed out a good chunk of things for me to improve on. I feel like there was more criticism to be had for me this past week than there was praise; and yet that’s what made it great and I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to experience it all.
I’ve found a pattern with multiplayer games, where the mechanics(skills) that people currently possess aren’t the best precursor to whether or not they’ll reach a high rank. It’s a person’s mentality and ability to communicate that can be the best factor to predict how high they can climb in the ranks, and so I think this translates quite well with not just SCA but in many areas of life.
Going off track here, I recently read a chapter in the book Predatory Thinking by Dave Trott where he talks of a successful photographer who made good money. After a series of fortunate events, despite being atheist, he went on a 3 week pilgrimage to a small church with a friend. What he discovered on his 3 week journey was that it wasn’t the destination that was the important or more meaningful part. It was the journey itself. The destination was the journey. Not the small church at the end. And so this photographer ended up becoming a painter and did what he loved for the rest of his life.
As a teenager, I would have thought that this photographer was an idiot, “It’s the destination that matters above all else, otherwise what have you worked your whole life for? You’ve either done something for the world or you haven’t. ” However, after reading Predatory thinking, I’m now able to realise what I also value, just like the photographer, it’s the journey itself.
Every day at SCA is like a new game, with new challenges and new tasks that I want to complete. And yet every week as a whole feels like a game, which is all part of a 1 year game, that can only be completed and ‘won’ by going through every day, every week within it. While I originally began writing this with the metaphor as SCA as a game, I think that the best thing I gained from it wasn’t just the ‘gaming’ lens and mentality, but also the clarification and focus in the way I want to perceive my experiences.