Our resident guinea pig, Bazaboy, takes it upon himself to test various energy inducing drinks and their ability to keep him gaming through the night. Bazaboy is a professional, please don’t try this at home.
The idea behind this article has been bouncing around inside my head for a couple of months now and the one thing that has been stopping me has been finding the right game for the job. Ideally I needed a game that I would not be able to complete within a few days and so I initially thought a driving game as they are pretty much open ended. I love driving games, probably more than any other genre. But for this little experiment I need a game that I can sit and play for numerous prolonged gaming sessions and, although I love driving games, I usually limit my time with them to a two or three hour session at most, as they generally require 100% concentration and this means they would not really be ideal for my purpose.
I needed something that would take time to complete, but also offer up plenty of variation in gameplay. I considered Final Fantasy XIII when it was released, but found myself enjoying the game so much that I forgot all about the article. My next thought was to replay Grand theft Auto IV, which would be perfect for my needs. As I was thinking this, it then came to me. A game I had been waiting on was about to be released and coming from Rockstar Games in the same vein as GTA IV. That game was Red Dead Redemption. It’s a game that will take time to play through, with a wide variation in not only an epic story but also side missions, challenges and general exploring. A lengthy game with plenty to do, making it ideal for my needs.
With the game chosen, we can get down to the meat of this article. What I am going to be doing, over a series of lengthy game playing sessions, is testing the effects of caffeine related beverages and energy drinks in a bid to find out whether or not they sharpen the senses, giving the player an edge in games, as many gamers will claim, along with whether or not they can keep you awake and alert for longer game playing sessions. I will be testing a variety of drinks for this article, from tea and coffee to Red Bull and Lucozade. Although there is a huge choice of these drinks out there, I am limiting my choice to a handful while trying to cover a variety of drinks.
How I will be doing this is by having numerous game sessions every other night,Â using a single product for each in an attempt to discover if they have any effect on my game playing skills or length of time I can comfortably stay awake and play the game for.
But before I get down to the testing, I must include a disclaimer here stating that neither I nor the writers, editors or staff here at GGUK encourage the mass consumption of energy drinks. Most of them do have a recommended daily intake and drinking more than this is done so at the consumers own discretion and could possibly lead to adverse side effects including dizzy spells, twitching and hyperactivity. The same can also be said for prolonged gaming sessions. Most games recommend taking a break every hour or so, which I will of course be doing. But to be honest, everyone reading this is probably a gamer and I am willing to place a safe bet on the fact the we have all partaken in a mammoth gaming session or two at some point and so we all know about taking a break when it is needed.
This being said I did, before beginning these important and extensive tests, consult my own personal health and safety consultant as to whether or not I was at risk of doing myself permanent physical or mental damage. Nurse Alexandra gave me the all clear stating that should I begin to have any strange or ill feelings, more so than I normally do that is, I should probably stop. Mentally though, she said I could not get much worse than I already am. She did also offer to give me a full physical exam, but I really can not go into details on that here. So once again I must reiterate that I am not going into this recklessly and all precautions have been taken. That is more than enough of all this health and safety nonsense, it really is getting out of hand. Now we can get into the fun stuff of playing games.
One other note that I feel I must mention before beginning. I will be discussing in some detail certain missions in the game Red Dead Redemption. I will not be going into super detail on the missions, but if you plan on playing the game and are looking for a 100% spoiler free experience, I would suggest avoiding certain parts of this article as I do not wish to spoil a great game like this for others.
Although this is not a review of the game, I will be writing extensively about it throughout this piece, so you will get an idea of what I think of the game itself. How this will work is that I shall begin each gaming session at the set time of around 11pm and playing for around an hour and a half. Then I shall begin to take on board whichever sense sharpening product I am testing that evening and then playing on until I feel I have either had enough or I pass out due to sleep depravation, whichever occurs first. I will be taking notes on whether I feel my skills in the game are improved due to the consumption of said energy drinks, so each session will read kind of like a journal of the evening, and morning as it turns out in most cases. Read on and see what happened.
PART 2 >