• Guest, The rules for the P & N subforum have been updated to prohibit "ad hominem" or personal attacks against other posters. See the full details in the post "Politics and News Rules & Guidelines."

How Many Hours Spent on Steam/Video Games?

Mai72

Lifer
Sep 12, 2012
10,650
1,161
126
I just counted how many hours I had spent on Steam, and the total was about 2800 hours (give or take). That doesn't take into consideration my gaming time before Steam. If I had to add those hours as well, I'd probably be looking at 5,000 hours spent on video games. Now before someone says "time spent on something that you like isn't wasted time" I agree. But, it does beg the question "If I would had spent that time more wisely on other pursuits like learning a new language, or starting a side business would my life be much different today. Not that I'm complaining. It was just an observation.

Are my hours, rookie hours? How many hours have you invested into your gaming hobby. Is there any regret?
 

Zenoth

Diamond Member
Jan 29, 2005
5,081
103
106
I thought about the "What if I had done something else for that same amount of time" thing before. The thing is we could tell that to ourselves regardless of what we spent that time on, but it's indeed very easy to think that playing video games instead of doing 'x' is a "waste" of time. In the grand scheme of things I think as long as you get by financially then you should have the right to play video games for any amount of time you want, be it on Steam or just in general.

In my case, as far as Steam goes I'm not sure. And in general... I started at around 8 or 9 years-old (I usually go with nine), a bit late actually compared to other gamers I spoke to about this before (whom in most cases told me they remember playing games from as soon as 5 or 6 years-old). I pretty much never stopped from that point, not a single year went by without playing games. In fact, close to not a single month went by without playing at least one game. The number of hours dedicated to video gaming would be astronomical for a human life span, all things considered. There's no way to know for sure, but I can for example just take specifics into account, such as Diablo 2; a game I know I spent about 6 years of my life playing. Obviously, it doesn't mean 6 years in a row while playing 24/7. But 6 years where pretty much every single day of weeks, and week-ends, give or take some exceptions here and there (very few) I would be playing it anywhere from 2 to up to 7 hours (even cutting on sleep hours to play it). The time I spent playing that game in and of itself would have probably given me nearly a full year worth of income if I had spent it in a full time job instead (all compressed time anyway, but it's just an estimation; might have been more actually).

But to come back on my point in the first paragraph, we're talking about video gaming but really... we can say this with anything else. If I spend 10 years of my life doing mountain biking many hours a day (in younger years anyway) I could easily stop and think "What if I had spent that time doing something else?". It goes with almost everything. Now, obviously, video gaming was never meant to be a source of income originally. So of course playing video games was perceived as a "waste of time" for... well, for a very long time. It has only been very recently in video gaming history where it's now possible to "not really waste your time" playing them anymore since not only is it possible to literally live off of doing that now, but you can even have a very comfortable life doing so, if it works for you anyway. With social media, monetization and streaming... people today can walk down a street with their cam Live and speak about how their bowl of cereals was good this morning while receiving donations and looking at "Chat" playing with emoticons in the meantime.

However, in some of those cases the "gamers" (or streamers or... "content creators") don't like it and it shows. They do it for the money. Good for them, we all need money. But would they do something else for that same money? Probably. Do they wonder if they're wasting their time and "What if..." when they think of what would happen if they had spent that time doing something else? Maybe not (we tend to not wonder about too many things when we have no financial worries in life). Anyway, speaking for myself, no regrets. Because I know I like it. I liked it from day one with my NES, and I still like it today on PC. I find it hard to have regrets about doing something I like. I could of course regret not playing games per se, but regret having spent so much time doing that. Then again, I might have regretted it if I had spent the exact same amount of time doing something I didn't like even if it meant having money from it (or "more" money from it) by comparison. I was never paid playing games, ever. In fact, like most of us, I have to spend money on this hobby. Still, no regrets.

The only way I would have regretted it (speaking for myself here) is only if after 'x' number of years playing games I would have came to the realization that I didn't like it, that it was a waste of time, that it didn't "bring" me anywhere, that it didn't "advance" my life, or myself as a person and that I should have done "something else" instead (even if it means blindly thinking that "something else"' anything else, would have automatically been "better" for me, without actually knowing if it would have been to start with). But the simple reality for me is that playing video games (or, well, precisely I should say playing video games I like) bring me joy in an otherwise very boring life. Outside of gaming I would have probably spent a similar amount of time either watching movies, reading books or drawing if I really had to do something else to entertain myself (I still do those other things but not as much in a dedicated way and sheer time as I do with gaming).
 

Stg-Flame

Diamond Member
Mar 10, 2007
3,007
255
126
I have well over 10,000 hours on TES Morrowind alone and I cannot even fathom my hours for Starcraft, Warcraft, or Diablo 2 (played non-stop for a solid decade). Little over 2,000 hours for Left 4 Dead 2, Dungeon Defenders, and Borderlands 2, then around 1,000 hours for a myriad of other games like Grim Dawn, Terraria, Fallout New Vegas, Binding of Isaac series, etc. etc. etc.


With all these hours, I still had time to learn another language and accomplish a lot of tasks. However, with everything taken into consideration, the main reason why I didn't do so many things that people list off as alternatives to gaming is simply because I didn't want to do any of those things. I wanted to play games. Some people play the guitar. Some people are socialites and love to go clubbing. Some people do woodworking. Some people play video games. Just do what you want to do in life - you've only got one to spend it how you want.
 

WhiteNoise

Senior member
Jun 22, 2016
984
138
106
In steam I have 5,179.05 hours played. Ive been using steam for 15 years.
These hours do not include games I play on other services such as Origon and ubisoft, or games I have the disc for or any console games or all the games I played before steam....
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
3,887
788
136
No idea. Maybe several hundred total since 2012... or whenever they started logging hours. Obviously more since Steam's infancy. My PC total is probably a few thousand-ish hours

My issue was spending hours upon hours on actual PC building, making sure I could run a game... and then actually playing the game for an hour or less lol
 

PajamaParty

Junior Member
Mar 22, 2019
22
2
41
I've spent the last 20 years playing video games. I could've done something else with all of that time, but I've also had some great experiences and met great people because of video games, which I wouldn't have had if I wasn't playing video games.

As long as you enjoy it still and don't regret doing it, I don't think it's not a waste of time.
 

rivethead

Platinum Member
Jan 16, 2005
2,635
106
106
Well I believe that any form of entertainment has health benefits too - mainly stress relief. You talk about starting a side business with those hours instead of gaming. Could you handle it? Owning your own business is incredibly stressful. You may be in poor mental and physical health today had you decided to start a business instead of play video games.

And that's the beauty of video games (and other forms of entertainment) - it allows us to step away from the "real world" and relieve some stress.

Other benefits include hand/eye coordination, keeping the mind sharp, analytical thinking, etc.

I mean, it ain't all bad.

I haven't looked at my Steam hours.
 

Midwayman

Diamond Member
Jan 28, 2000
5,723
325
126
My issue with steam is it'll log idle time. I have games with a couple hundred hours that only exist because I left them running in the back ground for a week. Either way its big.

I don't look at it as wasted time. Nobody can be on 100% of the time. At least it is an active pursuit and I'm keeping my mind sharp, not being a potato watching TV.
 

[DHT]Osiris

Diamond Member
Dec 15, 2015
8,666
4,704
146
1556030510348.png
Not counting Everquest (about 1y of playtime), Wow (no clue, one account was rabid from Vanilla -> BC, and I've been a casual since then on another account), Dwarf Fortress (easily hundreds upon hundreds of hours), or any of the games I played prior to Steam/not tracked by steam (The Specialist mod for HL1 and Morrowind/Oblivion pre-Steam would be notable inclusions)

EDIT: A caveat to the above so nobody thinks I'm a complete nutter, ~8800 of the above hours were from universe sandbox, getting the 1y played time cheevio, because I was too lazy to figure out how to trick it with clock changes. You can throw that 8800 back on with EQ /played though so I guess that evens out :p
 
Last edited:

local

Golden Member
Jun 28, 2011
1,797
453
136
Umpteen thousand hours total. Been playing pretty much daily for the last 33 years or so. I averaged about 100 hours a week for a decade or so but now kids get in the way and I'm lucky to get in 30 hours a week.
 

mopardude87

Diamond Member
Oct 22, 2018
3,348
1,575
96
About 1500 hours total across all games most being in GTA V with 714. Most of my gaming hours have been in Battlefield titles dating back from BF2 onwards.Very few in BF1/BF5 as i think those are trash in comparison to earlier titles.
 

Chaotic42

Lifer
Jun 15, 2001
33,854
957
126
View attachment 5478
Not counting Everquest (about 1y of playtime), Wow (no clue, one account was rabid from Vanilla -> BC, and I've been a casual since then on another account), Dwarf Fortress (easily hundreds upon hundreds of hours), or any of the games I played prior to Steam/not tracked by steam (The Specialist mod for HL1 and Morrowind/Oblivion pre-Steam would be notable inclusions)

EDIT: A caveat to the above so nobody thinks I'm a complete nutter, ~8800 of the above hours were from universe sandbox, getting the 1y played time cheevio, because I was too lazy to figure out how to trick it with clock changes. You can throw that 8800 back on with EQ /played though so I guess that evens out :p
Where are you getting that info from?
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
3,887
788
136
lol my hours on record is just over 2,000 but I've been on Steam over 14 years...
 

Fenixgoon

Lifer
Jun 30, 2003
28,243
3,659
126
steam hours - 1650+ (i know some of the numbers are an underestimate)
LoL - probably 2000+ hours alone
 

GodisanAtheist

Diamond Member
Nov 16, 2006
3,181
1,703
136
Umpteen thousand hours total. Been playing pretty much daily for the last 33 years or so. I averaged about 100 hours a week for a decade or so but now kids get in the way and I'm lucky to get in 30 hours a week.
How?!?!

When I was single and childless I had what now feels like a near infinite amount of time to game and I was probably clocking 40 hours a week.

Now married with children I feel like I'm jeapordizing my family and marriage by getting 5-7 hours in a week.

How?!
 

local

Golden Member
Jun 28, 2011
1,797
453
136
How?!?!

When I was single and childless I had what now feels like a near infinite amount of time to game and I was probably clocking 40 hours a week.

Now married with children I feel like I'm jeapordizing my family and marriage by getting 5-7 hours in a week.

How?!
No friends and a wife that knew what she was getting into.

Weekday schedule:
Get home at 6 and on computer by 6:15.
Eat 7-7:30.
Play games with kids on computer until their bedtime 7:30-9.
Play until I decide to go to bed 9-12 or later.

Average about 10 hours total on weekdays.

Weekend:
Wake up, get on computer, go to bed.
On and off throughout the day but unless something is going on that's it.

Average about 20 hours per weekend.



For what it's worth my wife puts in about 20 hours herself a week plus whatever she does when I am at work.

Today I put in 5 hours on Imperator: Rome from 6-12 and now I'm going to bed.
 

Stg-Flame

Diamond Member
Mar 10, 2007
3,007
255
126
Now married with children I feel like I'm jeapordizing my family and marriage by getting 5-7 hours in a week.

How?!
I've been with my girlfriend for almost 8 years and she understood that gaming is my hobby and passion when we got together. She doesn't ask that I put them aside for her and I don't game as much as I used to when she's around because I enjoy spending time with her. However, I did find a few games she enjoys (Mario Kart, most Lego games, Champions of Norrath, etc.) so we will play together on occasion. Her passion is books and crafting so I also read to her while she crochets or knits. Best of both worlds, we started the Witcher novels last year and blazed through them incredibly fast and now she loves watching me play The Witcher 3 since it gives her a visual representation of the books. I also got her into the Metro series and The Horus Heresy series.

On my days off, I will usually average 10+ hours of gaming (I rarely sleep) and still have time for socializing.
 

GodisanAtheist

Diamond Member
Nov 16, 2006
3,181
1,703
136
I've been with my girlfriend for almost 8 years and she understood that gaming is my hobby and passion when we got together. She doesn't ask that I put them aside for her and I don't game as much as I used to when she's around because I enjoy spending time with her. However, I did find a few games she enjoys (Mario Kart, most Lego games, Champions of Norrath, etc.) so we will play together on occasion. Her passion is books and crafting so I also read to her while she crochets or knits. Best of both worlds, we started the Witcher novels last year and blazed through them incredibly fast and now she loves watching me play The Witcher 3 since it gives her a visual representation of the books. I also got her into the Metro series and The Horus Heresy series.

On my days off, I will usually average 10+ hours of gaming (I rarely sleep) and still have time for socializing.
-To be clear, my wife does not begrudge my gaming hobby and used to be a gamer herself. She recently encouraged me to get a high refresh rate monitor or an NVME boot drive for my games. But with two kids, two full time jobs (wife works full time too and earns an even share of the household income), and a house to keep in order it feels like there just isn't enough time to spend with my kids and wife + game as much as I'd like.

I'm also a big time PC gamer and PC gaming is a largely solitary activity for me (I game on my PC in the den somewhat removed from the family room) so it tends to be something I do when the family is either out of town or rarely if they're asleep since I don't just want to be absent when my kids are in their primo development stage.

I am fairly sensitive to lack of sleep (mid-30's and I'm really starting to feel the age catching up) so gaming till 2 am to wake up at 6 am and go to work is just not feasable.

At the end of the day it's getting easier and my older kid is into co-op "Mario-likes" such as Battle block theater so my hobby and family time are starting to merge and find common ground. If I'm playing something a bit mature but not too bad like Skyrim she'll sit on my lap and watch me game for a bit. Kids are still to young for the ultraviolent shooters and Bioware dating simulators though, so none of that yet.
 

SMOGZINN

Lifer
Jun 17, 2005
13,285
2,910
136
Are my hours, rookie hours? How many hours have you invested into your gaming hobby. Is there any regret?
I am a bit of a hedonist in that I believe that the point of most of the things I do is so that I have the resources to do the things I enjoy.

In the end I will never be able to exchange those resources to regain my lost time, that makes my time my most precious resource as it is the only one that is non-renewable. So my goal should be to spend as much of that resource on the things that make my life worth living.

If I sacrifice all my time to do things I enjoy to gain more resources what is the point?
 

Shmee

Memory and Storage, Graphics Cards
Super Moderator
Sep 13, 2008
5,139
904
126
I think the game I played the most is ETQW, like 3000 hrs over the years.
 

ruthlewis

Junior Member
Jun 18, 2021
1
0
6
There’s no point in regretting the amount of time spent playing games. It’s actually something we like and enjoy, so we’re not wasting our time. But if you’re unemployed or financially not stable, then I can say you’re wasting your time fr. I’ve been playing video games since I can remember, I still play till now, and I don’t see myself stopping anytime soon, especially now that I play games for cash. I don’t really earn much, but yk they say half-bread is better than none. One thing about me is I usually get addicted to one game at a time, and that’s why my gaming hours won’t be as much as you guys own.
 
Last edited:

ASK THE COMMUNITY