Adult gamers - have you noticed your reaction time slip with age?

I have been gaming competitively since I was very young. Like 10 years old. I am still young (24) but I’ve already noticed a slight decline in my reaction speed from when I was a teen. And in fast-paced FPS or PvP games, even a few milliseconds can make a big difference.

I mean it’s no surprise really that aging brings about a decline - most of your top competitive gamers are not 50-year olds. But I’m curious if and when others have noticed similar declines in their ability to process and react to things extremely quickly.

Yeah…I’m 46, and I constantly find myself second-guessing my actions (w.r.t. WoW game) especially in a PvP situation. I’m way too slow to figure out who (class-wise) I am fighting before somebody loses (usually me) and how to handle that particular class in the best way possible to beat them. But in our defense, gaming has come a long way from your turn-based D&D games of the 80s. Lots more stuff to keep track of. A few concussions spread out over the years certainly haven’t helped my gaming speed either.

I couldn’t keep up with MK3 on my SNES when I was 25, unless I used a slo-mo controller.

I’m 52, and I no longer even try to play games that require fast reflexes.

Well, I’m 24 and I play games for a living…specifically, I’m paid to be good at them. I haven’t noticed a decline yet, good thing too, otherwise I’d be out of a job! I’m also pretty competitive whenever I take place in gaming tournaments once or twice a year.

47 here-a lot of it is anticipation, so as to compensate (on one of those online reflex testers I came out pretty slow). Hmm off to find a link to same…

Here’s one: lowest time was .173 seconds, which is better than I thought I’d do.

Heh, I think they messed up their units. I did it and got “0.263 ms” as a best time but I think it actually means to say 0.263 s. Damn, I’m slow, and I guess it has nothing to do with age. :stuck_out_tongue:

definitely. I’m 47 and try to play various ps3 games with some of my younger work colleagues. It’s evident in short time that I don’t have the reflex (or the vision) that they do.

They’ll be shooting at something, and I won’t even be able to see what they’re shooting at in some cases. :frowning:

I’m 30, and I notice I’m FAR faster and better than I was when I was in my early teens (ESPECIALLY in “Nintendo-hard” plaformers and shooters) but I’m slowed a bit from my peak in my early 20s.

Part of the latter, I think, is that I don’t practice twitch FPS games as often–give me a Battlefield 2 where I can get the commander vote, and my RTS reflexes are faster than almost anyone. It probably boils down to hours put in more than anything else, at least until you’re in your 50s.

Anecdote II: My mom, when in her forties, could routinely cause Breakout and SeaQuest on the Atari 2600 to overheat before she’d lose even a single life–she was well over 300,000 points in the latter and the highest claimed scores I can find online are in the 250,000 range.

When I designed the original Rainbow Six, my inspiration for the variable targeting reticle was my 30-something frustration over the superior twitch reflexes of the 20-somethings I was playing *Quake *against at the time. I wanted a mechanic that rewarded strategic thought and careful aiming, and penalized snap shots taken on the run.

Hamster, you designed R6? Do you have a “Ask the R6 developer” type thread around here? Sounds interesting!

My average was .208s; the lowest was .196s.

Battlefield 2 was just infuriating to me at times.

39 here.

My subconscious twitch reflexes and reaction are still as good as they ever were as far as I can tell (based on my playing real life soccer).

What has really slowed however is if I have to loop an option through my conscious decision process. Competitive FPSs for example. In Call of Duty, I lose a ton of reaction time in the “Friend or Foe” recognition part of the process, and get killed constantly as a result. In other FPSs, where everything is an enemy or an AI bot, I can still do crazy accurate twitch hipshooting.

edit: on the reflex tester link, I’m getting an average of about .204ms. Not bad, and faster than my internet ping, not so fast now are you, stupid electrons :smiley:

I was a .250 average on that tester thinger, and I’m consistently in the top 15% of Call of Duty 4 Hardcore and Battlefield 2 maps I play on. When one ages, one gains in strategy what one loses in twitch, and you just have to make the best of what you got. :smiley:

LOL … it’s been over a decade and I’ve forgotten too much. I haven’t even played some of the newer iterations of the franchise. Thanks for asking though.

I am slower to pick up a new game although with FPS games I usually just walk right into the middle of the pack score wise.

keep in mind on other thing about older gamers, we usually don’t put in the hours that the younger crowd does, back when I was playing Tribes for 3-6 hours (or some times more) each day I was unstoppable, I had to change my name every couple weeks because people would leave the sever when I logged in and they saw I was on the other team. now? yeah not so much, I just logged in a couple weeks ago to grab some screen shots and died to a friggin BOT…in the TRAINING MISSIONS. (tribes one bots were painfully lame) it was pretty embarrassing.

scored a .200 average, my first time I didnt notice the average time so I dont know what it was but I think my best reaction time was around .173 (worst was .4 something but I was expecting something else the first time I clicked start)

Yeah, I’d say lack of practice explains it better than age, especially when you’re only 24.

23 here, don’t think my reflexes have slowed at all, but I think they’ve always been average (usually hovering around the .23 range in tests such as the one John DiFool posted).

I know that when my dad started getting into his mid-40s, his reaction time definitely slowed. He won’t play FPSes with me anymore, just RTSes.

  1. A little bit, in some things. But I find that my years of experience allowing me greater prediction ability and knowledge of what to look for make up for it.