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Memory Leaks: Deep Rock Galactic

⛏️ They came with fire, they came with axes...

Deep Rock Galactic is a co-op first person shooter in which a team of up to four dwarves go on mining missions in the procedurally generated caves of Hoxxes IV. Released in 2020 by Coffee Stain Publishing, it was the first game developed by Danish studio Ghost Ship Games and draws heavily from Minecraft and Left 4 Dead.

How I Remember It...

For this final installment of Memory Leaks, I want to talk about a game that I loved so much I had to let it go. Honestly, I'm not going to talk about the game that much. It's new, it's fun, it's inexpensive, it's got a very wry sense of humor and some inventive biome design. If you like co-op FPSs with rogue-like sensibilities and lots of customizations and collectibles, you should definitely check it out. The learning curve is a teensy bit steep, so play it with friends who can show you the ropes.

I have a bit of an addictive personality. I don't want to just enjoy something, I want to 100% it. When I start a new podcast, I go all the way back to the beginning. When I discover a new author, I want to consume their entire oeuvre. And when I was a whip-smart kid with insomnia and very few responsibilities, this was an okay way to exist. But I'm a 40-something now with a mortgage and a family, to say nothing of friends I want to see and other hobbies I want to put time into.

DRG started as a pandemic game that I'd play during virtual happy hours with coworkers. On Fridays we'd blow off an hour early and run a few missions together. It was a nice way to cap off the week. And then the rest of the team started to gravitate towards other games, but I kept going, because it was fun. And then the office opened back up and virtual happy hours weren't as big of a thing, but I kept playing. A lot.

And it was starting to get in the way of living. There are new challenges every week and season-long collection quests. It's just catnip for me and I was logging a lot of hours on it. I'd play it while the kids were getting ready for bed. I'd play it in the evenings. I'd put in four or five missions on a weekend. And it wasn't like I was playing with other people--I was just going on missions solo in order to collect all of the things. There was no end goal in mind, just pursuing more and more of the endless sea of collectibles. It was starting to be not healthy.

And that's how a two-and-a-half year old game gets into a list of things fondly remembered. Honestly, I'd love to play it again. But I would need to be in a mental place where I could run a mission or two and then stop and be fine with that. And for now, I'm devoting my time to other things.

And that wraps up Memory Leaks. Next week will be the first installment of a new series.

Stay tuned!


In MEMORY LEAKS, Kurt is going through his favorite video games. See more posts.