363/365 – Meditation Games #363 – The Grind

Developer: Wombatstuff

Launcher Quote: “…”

One of the most dreadful things that I feel like I experience when playing games is being very much conscious of something I’m doing within it being a grind. All the gamers I know who have some kind of experience with any kind of long-term investment with particular games know what I’m talking about – that slog that makes it feel like it’s more work than play, the feeling that you’re only incrementally getting someplace even despite putting in many hours of effort, and perhaps, worst of all, the awful surrender of potentially having to look up efficiency guides for something that shouldn’t be so painful.

Today’s game, though it’s pretty difficult to tell due to it launching into the repetitiveness of its activity, reminds me distinctly of grindy game mechanics in a nutshell. You build something up, get paid for what you do and then get a reward in the form of something random and sometimes, even useful, before going all the way back to the beginning and doing it all over again. The interesting thing that I thought of when I was playing this game was the motivation I had to keep going and see if something changed, if I was moving towards some other outcome other than to repeat the same thing over and over again. In a way, it’s kind of a commentary on why people, who may consciously know a grind exists in a game, will continue to do it despite how soul-crushing it might seem. That light at the end of the tunnel, however small, still has the ability to keep you going.

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