Forgetting Fate/Grand Order

Fate/Grand Order is everywhere. It’s even taken over Beneath the Tangles—at least that’s true of our fan art Tumblr. That particular platform is fed by Pixiv, a community of artists mostly from Japan, and the world of Fate Go is by far the most popular franchise on the site. All that awesome art, and especially the potential of picking up Kara no Kyoukai’s Shiki as a hero, drew me to the game. I started playing it and really enjoyed it.

But I haven’t played Fate/Grand Order now in more than a year—and that makes me really happy.

I’ll explain.

I long had the motivation to start the game, but visual novels, games, apps, and related items are very low on my priority list. I want to jump into that fun, but my free time is already given over to writing, watching anime, and a few other pursuits. There’s just no room.

However, I started playing Fate/Grand Order because I needed something quiet to do during the night. About a year ago, my son, who has long struggled with anxiety, was having a lot of problems going to sleep. For several weeks, to calm his nerves, I would lay down next to his bed until he fell asleep. While laying there, I needed something to do. Even with headphones, anime was out of the question because I needed to be listening to my son. I wasn’t into light novels yet and manga is a “mood” thing for me, and I wasn’t in the mood for it. Queue Fate/Grand Order.

I played every night and enjoyed it tremendously. I mixed and matched my teams and received some of the heroes I had really wanted. I had a lovely time playing, and it eased the nerves and impatience involving my son to focus on the game while he slumbered. It was a strange time, actually. I struggled inside with patience and grace, while quietly laughing at Altera’s awkwardness. I hoped for peace for my son while I battled with Saber Lily.

In a few weeks, my son was able to better manage his night time anxiety. I was no longer needed at his bedside, and the time that once went into Fate/Grand Order now turned back toward spending time with my wife and watching anime.

I’ve felt the desire to jump back in a number of times since, especially when I see new characters introduced, but FGO is just no longer a priority for me. The only time and place when it rose to the surface was during my son’s anxious spell. And so I can say this with confidence—as much as I enjoyed it, if I had the choice of playing Fate/Grand Order or never playing again, I’d choose the latter. Yes, that would make me very happy indeed.

Featured illustration by じゃぶじゃぶ (reprinted w/permission)


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