It is not obvious whether gaming is an expensive or cheap, as far as hobbies go. It is certainly not as costly as skiing or as throwing diamonds into the sea – if that is anyone’s hobby – but it is not without its requirements; it’s certainly a lot more expensive than, say, bird watching.
Below we pick out a couple of common pastimes and compare their costs with those of gaming in the hope that the results will illuminate, entertain, or, if nothing else, provide welcome relief from boredom.
Gaming and running are similar in that both require an initial investment in a piece of equipment: for gaming, this is the console or PC; for running this will be the shoes and possibly other items such as specialist socks, etc. Now, according to research from Voucherbox, Nintendo have maintained a release price of £159 on a number of consoles over the years, with prices varying for their hand-held ranges. Microsoft and Sony generally charge more, with the Xbox One coming in around the £300.00 mark, but overall games and consoles are getting steadily cheaper.
The same cannot be said of running shoes. Up until quite recently, nearly all shoes were thought of as running shoes – excluding high-heels and clogs. However, due to the ever-present need for marketers and businesses to create demand – or, to be less cynical, the ever-present desire to improve simple products and bestow them with greater functions – the running shoe came into being. With the more expensive shoes coming in at over £100 pounds, this investment is not so different from the amount spent on a console. The parallel becomes stronger when one considers that running shoes will wear out after a few years of use, which is a comparable period to the life-cycle of the console – replaced after a few years by the next generation.
If the average new game is around £50.00, which a look in most retailers will reveal to be the case, and the average meal for two is in the UK is just off £60.00, including the bill, then we can safely say that that you can eat out at an average restaurant twice a week or buy one new game a week for the same price. Now, one could argue that a game provides hours of fun while a meal can be finished faster than you can say “that’s an inappropriate speed at which to eat in public”. And you could be right, but it does feel like games are getting shorter and shorter every year.
There’s also the argument that one needs food to live, and that while some may feel they need games to live, the more strongly they feel so, the more likely the opposite is true.
When you tally the costs up, you are presented with a choice: you can eat out quite frequently and take up running, or you can take up gaming. One option will lead to health and vitality but may ultimately just not fulfil you if you love video games. The choice is yours, but now you know.