Author Topic: Spoiler discussion - What prompts you to avoid spoilers for a video game?  (Read 857 times)

I've been thinking about spoilers, but specifically for video games.  I know people can vary quite a bit on how they handle them, but I'm probably like most people that it is entirely case dependent without one simple pattern that I know of yet. 

With most games it doesn't even occur to me to think in terms spoiled/not spoiled.  I just casually consume and come across information about games throughout the course of my habits.  If I end up buying the game there was never a preceding point in time where I felt "uh oh, I need to deliberately stop stumbling into more information" before purchasing.

But then, much more uncommonly, there are games where at some point I consciously decide to enter "avoid spoilers mode".  The most typical time would be when the game launches, and the most typical scenario would be where I know I'm not going to get around to playing it right away, but I can see people are talking a lot about it.  Entering "avoid spoilers mode" might also occur during those last few weeks leading up to the launch when the information about the game is flowing more freely.

Starer Question:
So what gives?  Why do we sometimes break left (have a very casual relationship with new information) and sometimes break right? (strictly avoid new information until you get your chance to play it yourself)

And Also:
Feel free to share whatever thoughts or discussions you have on the broader topic as a whole.



Here's my initial thoughts about my own question, namely the possible triggers for this behavior seem to be:

  • Having a long pre-existing relationship with a series can greatly increase the chance of wanting to enter "avoid spoiler mode" (hello BOTW!)
  • Feeling like you are a "big" fan of the game (whether the game is part of a series or an entirely brand new IP) increases the chances of "avoid spoiler mode" when you feel _isolated_ as such a fan (i.e. when everyone else except you seems to be hating on the upcoming game in question)
  • When there is a growing sense that game in question is setting up to make a "big impact" -- meaning a big impact on the industry, or perhaps just the genre/series.
  • When you are consciously aware that you have been following the game's coverage very closely, i.e. you identify yourself as being "abnormally informed" compared to most consumers.  This increases the chance of wanting to avoid spoilers because you are effectively trying to re-normalize yourself for the game's launch.

I'm not even really trying to dissect the psychological underpinnings (which surely could be the basis for even more discussion).  Where I'm coming from with this question is trying to dissect the practical variables that ultimately determine one's desire to avoid spoilers (or not).  Even with all these thoughts written down I'm still intrigued to explore the question further.

One thing, at least, seems definite: the "avoid spoilers mode" will never be entered if you have not affirmatively made up your mind to buy/play the game.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2018, 12:56:53 AM by dosboot »

Re: Spoiler discussion - What prompts you to avoid spoilers for a video game?
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2018, 02:27:24 AM »
I pretty much always try to avoid spoilers for games I plan to play.

Re: Spoiler discussion - What prompts you to avoid spoilers for a video game?
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2018, 04:50:43 AM »
Do you ever do a "media blackout mode" though?  That actually describes what I meant by "avoid spoilers mode", since I'm not just talking about what the final boss is like and plot twists.

To put my question to you another way: are there ever times when, after planning to play a game, you decide to pretty much avoid watching any more media (videos of other people playing, videos about the game by youtubers) and avoid listening to any further discussions about the game (forum threads, podcast segments)?
« Last Edit: February 20, 2018, 05:02:15 AM by dosboot »

Third Eye Lem

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Re: Spoiler discussion - What prompts you to avoid spoilers for a video game?
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2018, 06:52:28 AM »
To put my question to you another way: are there ever times when, after planning to play a game, you decide to pretty much avoid watching any more media (videos of other people playing, videos about the game by youtubers) and avoid listening to any further discussions about the game (forum threads, podcast segments)?

Plotwise, I tend to avoid spoilers big time. Did so with Persona 5, Nier Automata and Disgaea 4, though with Cuphead it's less of a plot and more of "what crazy boss will I fight next?" spoiler avoidance. I ended up looking up some of the Cuphead bosses before fighting them just so I'd have an idea of how to avoid some of their harder attacks. Not so with the run and gun segments, those were mostly blind.

That said, I'm...Usually pretty good about dodging spoilers. I recall completely just tuning out Madoka and P5 for the longest time; sometimes your best defense is to just not look anything up IMO. Hope that helps.

Re: Spoiler discussion - What prompts you to avoid spoilers for a video game?
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2018, 12:50:10 PM »
Do you ever do a "media blackout mode" though?  That actually describes what I meant by "avoid spoilers mode", since I'm not just talking about what the final boss is like and plot twists.

To put my question to you another way: are there ever times when, after planning to play a game, you decide to pretty much avoid watching any more media (videos of other people playing, videos about the game by youtubers) and avoid listening to any further discussions about the game (forum threads, podcast segments)?
Yep. I avoid watching any videos and only read the discussions that don't go into too much detail.