A good friend of mine
who worked for PC Gamer, once told me that companies consider you hardcore if you pass 20 hours of gaming in a week. At the time it seemed like a reasonable amount of time, but then I really started to sit down and think about it, and 20 hours seems like it may a bit more commonplace than most people realize.
Say you have one MMO account open. You log in at least once a day to check your auctions - or perhaps a few times a day, chatting with guildmates while you're there. In the evening, you come home and to relax, you group with some friends or just go exploring. If you log in for three hours a day - even when it's spread out here and there - you'll clock 21 hours in a week. To some, this may very well be hardcore - to others, it's spread out in bite-sized pieces, so it feels pretty casual. If you have more than one MMO account, the time multiplies just in terms of simple maintenance like auctions and mail as well as social time; depending on your level of investiture of course.
Now, with all that said, we figured we'd ask - how precisely do you
define casual? Is it time invested? Mindset and how you play? A bit of both? Something else entirely?