| Mail |
You might also like: WoW Insider, Joystiq, and more

Reader Comments (9)

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 8:32AM J Brad Hicks said

  • 2.5 hearts
  • Report
I tend to think of "casual" versus "hardcore" as more about mindset than hours per week. A "casual" player is one who has fun doing whatever he's doing. A "hardcore" player is one who is doggedly fixated on getting to the end of the game as fast as possible, via the most efficient route, whether it's fun or not. Your average hardcore player might spend more hours per week online than your average casual player, since he'll sacrifice a lot of off-time to meet his self-set goal, but maybe not any more than the occasional casual player who has a lot of time on his or her hands.

In MMOs, you can really see the difference when it comes to attitudes about alts. A casual player says, "I've been playing this same character for 10 hours this week, I feel like changing off for 10 hours and seeing whether or not I'd have more fun doing something else, or at least taking a break." The hardcore player screams in agony over being in a team or a guild with that person, because he can't count on them getting to the end-game until long after he's "done with the game."

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 1:29PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I agree. My roommate and I play about the same amount of games time-wise, but while I spend my time chatting with friends, checking markets and doing casual pick-up group stuff, he spends his time raiding or doing scheduled matches or building his gamer score... whatever next achievement tier he's set for himself. It goes back home to that "playing games to play" or "playing games to win" debate.
Reply

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 10:16AM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Have you ever seen that video of that guy doing the WoW raid and screaming about "srow all de facking dotz" and stuff? There's your hardcore.

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 11:06AM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Casual is somebody who plays a game for fun.
Hardcore is somebody who plays the game for a goal, and doesnt stop until he achieves it.
Pro is somebody who always achieves his goals, and moves on to the next goal/game pretty quickly.

And noob, is somebody you cut through for fun while completing these goals.

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 2:33PM Greeen said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Another aspect of the hardcore is, as mentioned, the set goal in short time, without deviation. Esp. raiders who are out after completing tough raids, receiving rare items, are hardcore because they live after *a schedule*.

Start 20:00, don't be late, or you can't join, end 00:00, don't leave early or you will be kicked.
Roll a certain class with certain talents for the benefit of the guild raids. Grind for hours resource x to make buff z for this raid/the guild.....

There is nothing casual in that anymore. It is like a job. It can be perhaps, as a sport, say soccer, "in rl" would be, but there coming late, being sick, etc is tolarated usually.....

Then finally, casual/hardcore for single player gamers versus mmos would be actually solely (?) in terms of time I guess. I don't know any non-MMO player, who plays 20 h/week, unless they used to play MMOs at one point.

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 12:26PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I'd have to agree with infamous, I play maybe a couple of hours a day(3-4) but i think of myself as a casual gamer because I try to focus more on having fun then leveling and getting the best gear. It really is a hard thing to define because I also have a friend who play alot of WoW and while he has fun doing it I would classify him as a hardcore gamer because he spent 3 days straight getting to 80. It really all depends on personal dedication to the game.

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 1:08PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I think just looking at gamers as hard core or casual is a bit dated at this point. For instance this article: http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=10704 shows how recent trends have grouped gamers into 6 different categories. I think that defining hardcore vs casual is not something that you can define by hours played. My girlfriend, for example, would spend more hours playing a game then me simply because she hasn't been playing games as long, but that in no way makes her a hardcore gamer. Likewise someone with less hours in game might not be hardcore either because a hardcore player is more likely to seek every sidequest, etc. then a casual one. I think that it ultimately boils down to mindset. I disagree with earlier posters though, hardcore gamers are out to have as much fun as casual ones, its just they define fun differently. In EVE its pretty hardcore to wait till after downtime to log in and start an 8 hour siege to destroy a player owned station. This doesn't mean that the fleet doing this isn't having fun. Some of the best times I've ever had in EVE have been in large Fleet ops blowing stuff up and talking with the other people in Corp.

Long story short: Hardcore gamers seek to be the most proficient at their game as they can be while casual gamers aren't too concerned with being "the best". Both still have fun.

Posted: Jan 19th 2009 8:27PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
If I spent 3 hours a night in an MMO, that would basically be the entirety of my free time wiped out excluding weekends. By the time I get home, have sorted food, dealt with whatever crisis happens tonight, 3-4 hours before I need to go to bed sounds about right.

I think the argument of attitude is important though. People who approach MMOs almost like a job terrify me. I have a job, why would I want a second one?

Posted: Jan 20th 2009 3:28PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I would agree that casual/hardcore is a state of mind. I have a friend that plays Guitar Hero (or did) competitively. He would go to tournaments on the weekend that would last about 5-10 hours over 2 days.

That's 10 hours a week, but he was certainly hardcore. I don't think he ever really "practiced" at home, having long ago mastered the game.

I play MMOs up to 6 hours a day on the weekends, and sometimes 3 to 4 during the weekdays. It's my hobby, and I'm sure I could find something else to do with my time. Watch movies, read books, go hang out at a local bar, etc. I just don't.

I don't consider MMOs anything more than a hobby. I play as a hobby, therefore I'm casual. It's as simple as that. If you think you're hardcore, you probably are. If you think you're casual, you probably are.

Some people like to question it as if it's addiction. Simple litmus test. Could the person spend a week outside of the game if they needed to?

Featured Stories

Engadget

Engadget

Joystiq

Joystiq

WoW Insider

WoW

TUAW

TUAW