I’m confused about how much I like Merge Mansion

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Game on growth worldwide, but it is mobile games that are experiencing the moment. Thanks to COVID-19 the video game boom and the near-ubiquity of smartphones, more and more people are playing mobile. And as of a few weeks ago, that number of millions of mobile gamers includes me. I’m hooked on Merge Mansion.

If you spend any time on the Internet, you have probably heard of Merge MansionThe internet is full of advertisements. (Instagram drew me in.) The ads themselves are absolutely weird. One function of live advertising Kathy Bates as Granny running away from granddaughter Maddy. Another features an animated Maddie. like a tearful bride (what happened to her husband?) whose house is on fire. As the commercial progresses, Maddie is rescued by her grandmother, who shows her around the mansion and helps her restore it. But wait! As soon as the house is assembled, the cops come and arrest the grandmother. As the police car pulls away, Grandma shows the palm of her handcuffed hand with the words “He’s alive” written on it.The boat is not a penny“-style.

The actual gameplay is a bit less action-packed and full of mystery than these trailers would suggest. It all starts like this: Maddie’s grandmother hands her a bunch of keys, which, as it turns out, unlock the gates of the mansion. Of course, Maddie didn’t even know her grandmother. It was mansion. What’s more, the grounds are in a terrible state and Maddie has to get to work cleaning and renovating everything, or the whole place will be condemned.

This is where part of the video game comes in: it uses a simple “merge” mechanic, like candy crush. You combine existing items and create new ones to clear different areas of the mansion and its grounds. As you unlock new areas, the story unfolds and Grandma appears to uncover new mysteries.

The promise of an exciting, strange mystery may have been what drew me to Unite Mansion, but the familiar addictive merge-style mobile game is what keeps me playing. And to be honest, it’s a little embarrassing.

I played this game non-stop, or at least as much as I could without paying real money to unlock features faster. I play it as soon as I get up in the morning (it’s my new Wordle), spend all my “energy” (a mechanic that allows me to create new items), let it rest until the evening, and then play a few queues after my the baby goes to bed. I have been known to test this and use the stored energy during lunch.

To be honest, I don’t know why it’s so humiliating. Mobile games developed so you don’t turn them off. There’s something incredibly soothing about cleaning out the shabby sections of a mansion. Plus the dopamine hit when I eventually get the object I’ve been looking for for days is real. Here I play right into the hands of the game creators, which is not very pleasant, but also wonderful. In addition, I have a feeling that there is some kind of intrinsic toxicity in the game. (Will I still be a “real” gamer if all I’ve been doing lately is playing mobile games?)

Instead of being embarrassed, I chose to accept the shame. Not only have I been the victim of a weird Instagram ad, but now I’m addicted to a mobile game that’s ultimately designed to suck real money out of me. Does it matter that I haven’t dumped money on it yet? Not really. It will probably happen if I play long enough. The shame I will feel when this eventually happens will be real, but it will also be fulfilling.

That’s the point, isn’t it? Yes, I’d rather play Rise of the Tomb Raider on my PlayStation, but the thing is, I didn’t have the time or luxury to sneak out of my daily life to make that happen. Even type of the game I’m addicted to isn’t quite in my wheelhouse or not something I really want to play, for now it’s satisfying and provides a convenient outlet for when I need it most.

And what is it, really? Am I not the first to scream if someone is trying to denigrate mobile games as invalid? I am as much a gamer when I play a mobile game as I am when I compulsively play on my console. I shouldn’t be embarrassed by the title I’m playing, and even if I’m embarrassed (because we feel what we feel!), I’ll embrace that emotion rather than hide behind it.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to get the mansion in order.

Credit: www.wired.com /

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