With fight-or-flight, your sympathetic nervous system kicks in and releases adrenaline followed by dopamine. If you like games like this, it's probably because adrenaline and dopamine are very enjoyable. Your pupils dilate. Your heart beats faster. Your airways open up. And you feel exhilarated. You feel alive. You feel powerful.

But not everyone likes these kinds of games. I don't. My friends don't. And I think my friends find games like this boring not only because they aren't interested in more stories about callous white men, and not only because they don't know how the controls work or don't get the references to geek culture, but also because they don't get an adrenaline high. They have a different response to stress.

My friends and I don't like adrenaline, but there's something similar that is probably going on with us. It's called tend-and-befriend. Like fight-or-flight, tend-and-befriend is an automatic, physiological reaction to threatening situations.


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