By Robbie Vanderveken - For Weekender

Game On: A farewell to video game columnists Robert Vanderveken as his new son takes center stage

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Robert Vanderveken’s son, Zander, 2 months, balances a game control. Vanderveken hangs up his game play for a little more family time.
Robert Vanderveken’s son, Zander, 2 months, balances a game control. Vanderveken hangs up his game play for a little more family time.

For the last year my wife and I have been working on starting a family and ever since we learned that we were having a baby everyone has been telling me I should give up video games because I am never going to have time to play.

I want to say that’s not necessarily true. If you have ever had a newborn you know that they don’t do much. They eat and sleep for hours at a time, allowing a good amount of time available for games. For the first couple of months the issue isn’t time it’s the motivation, playing games is fun and relaxing but sleep deprivation is a real struggle which does a good job of sapping your desire to play a game.

Any free moment you have you really just want to take a nap.

I am very excited for when my son gets older and I can introduce him to games so he can play and understand them, right now, at almost 2 months old, he looks at them and watches the bright flashing lights, but doesn’t get what’s going on. I can’t wait to see him pick up a controller of his own and I hope he loves games as much as Daddy.

All of my life playing video games I have never had trouble with long gaming sessions, I used to drop 10 hours or more at a time playing a game, but now as I get older, and have more responsibility, my gaming habits have changed.

For the last couple of years I have been doing a lot more writing and freelance work and spending time with my wife which cuts into game time so I have been shying away from huge RPG and open world games for a more bite sized experience.

I put almost 300 hours into “Elder Scrolls: Oblivion.” Now with my limited playtime, 300 hours might take me a year, with having to write game reviews and so many games coming out, I can’t play the same game for a year. It takes so long because I am very meticulous, I want to do everything and see everything, and earn all the trophies and achievements before I move on to a new game.

I still get to play games but I have to do it in short bursts at night, in-between feedings, while the baby is napping, or once in a while when my wife takes him out on a play date or something. I have been finding mobile games on my PS Vita or 3DS to be a better option for me because I can play for a few minutes before bed, or in a waiting room, but sometimes I get to play a full console experience which feels like a treat.

Recently the hardest thing for me is playing a game for a review. When I do get time I want to play a game for fun to unwind not to critically judge it which feels like work and that’s not why I play games.

So, with a heavy heart I write: I am not going to do the Get Your Game On column as often as I have. I will try to get a few reviews in from time to time, but I can’t keep up with the frequency of putting a review out every week.

I hope you enjoyed reading this column as much as I’ve enjoyed writing it. It’s been a joy for me to play and share so many games with you.

Robbie Vanderveken is the digital operations specialist at The Times Leader. E-mail him at [email protected]

Gamer columnists hangs up controllers for diaper bags

By Robbie Vanderveken

For Weekender

Robert Vanderveken’s son, Zander, 2 months, balances a game control. Vanderveken hangs up his game play for a little more family time.
http://theweekender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/web1_zander-2.jpgRobert Vanderveken’s son, Zander, 2 months, balances a game control. Vanderveken hangs up his game play for a little more family time.

Robert Vanderveken’s son, Zander, 2 months, balances a game control. Vanderveken hangs up his game play for a little more family time.
http://theweekender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/web1_zander1-1.jpgRobert Vanderveken’s son, Zander, 2 months, balances a game control. Vanderveken hangs up his game play for a little more family time.
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Robbie Vanderveken is the digital operations specialist at The Times Leader. E-mail him at [email protected]