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UleTheVee

Ule's View - The Disturbing and Bothersome Reality of Gaming Chairs

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Gaming Chairs are unique on their own way, they are definitely advertised to offer a great experience for the users. The chair a gamer uses can often be a very important factor when it comes to withstanding such things as fatigue or even back problems. In a way, you could say that a gamer’s most important asset is his chair because of how it keeps you physically ready for anything the competitive scene have to throw at you.  However, there’s also been a rise in complaints regarding problems with the Gaming Chairs themselves. Such complaints talk about aspects like design and comfort, among other things. Some people are just not satisfied with their current Gaming Chair set-up and the people who like their chairs are left wondering why that is the case.

I am quite indifferent to Gaming Chairs. However, I do enjoy protecting consumers from making bad choices with their hard-earned money. As such, I believe it’s important to take an in-depth look at what the inherent problem with Gaming Chairs is. We’ll talk about the main reasons why people are complaining about the chairs and what could be done to improve them.

You NEED this, we promise.

One of the main things that has been bothering me about how Gaming Chairs are sold is definitely the marketing ploys used to promote them. As mentioned before, there has been a lot of advertisement about how Gaming Chairs are supposed to make a “True Gamer”. I’m pretty sure you’ve seen this before, a Gaming Chair is usually advertised behind a lot of bells and whistles. They tell you about how prominent figures in eSports/YouTube use them without an issue and “make gaming better”. It’s one of the reasons why so many people tend to buy Gaming Chairs without hesitation, they are just chasing trends.

See, a real good chair will not be focusing on aspects such as what eCelebrities use it for their gaming activities. No, quality stuff usually just focuses on things such as comfort and ergonomics to make a product worth sitting on. In other words, not a lot of big brand companies tend to focus on these key aspects, which makes a lot of the complaints much more prevalent. I wouldn’t be surprised if we found out that a huge chunk of the money used for Gaming Chairs is used on the marketing and affiliates. Meanwhile the quality of the chairs themselves is hindered due to how aggressive the marketing needs to be for a rather lackluster product. Of course, the people who end up paying for them are the consumers.

The Problem Lies in the Core

Now, a huge problem with Gaming Chairs definitely boils down to the core design itself. See, the human physique requires an adjustable chair that adapts to it, not the other way around. The main problem with Gaming Chairs is that they tend to take inspiration from racing cars on their design. Racing Chairs tend to be designed to prevent the driver from falling off a vehicle while they are sliding all over the place thanks to the movement of the car when facing quick turns and other sorts of obstacles. However, you won’t be finding this sort of movement while playing a video game.

The main problem with Gaming Chairs is the fact that they are designed for an activity that is NOT gaming or even gaming related. The reasoning behind this is purely on aesthetics alone and we’ll be tackling this in a little bit as well.The armrests feel like they are more of an afterthought than anything. The wing design prevents the user’s arms from coming out too wide; resulting with very uncomfortable armrests. You can’t even use the “Workarounds” like the incorporation of a reclining feature, height adjustment or other things because they often tend to be negated. For example, if you want to use the reclining seat, you’ll have to get rid of the armrests, if you want the pillow behind you, you’re going to be faced with neck strain, so on and so forth.

Point is, Gaming Chairs are designed for a lot of things, Gaming is not one of them.

“It does look cool though!”

And here comes one of the reasons why Gaming Chairs are the hot topic to begin with. Let’s get this out of the way, most of the people who buy a Gaming Chair at a premium price tend to look at the pretty colors. Heck, I dare to say that even the “Gaming” part of the title is enough excuse for them to purchase a product that costs over $100 USD. This isn’t exclusive to Gaming Chairs, of course. This is an issue that expands among a lot of “Gaming” Accessories and Peripherals. If it has a “Gaming” in the title, it must be a product made for quality purposes, right?

Of course, I will always say that there are a lot of products that don’t need the “Gaming” label in order to be good. As such, a lot of gamers tend to rely on Office Chairs for a maximum amount of comfort and ease of use that doesn’t strain their bodies. Just because a product looks cool doesn’t mean it will actually help you. As such, I’ll say to those who are considering their next choice of Gaming Chair that they should check that it fits their bodies and keeps them from having or developing back problems.

For the Stubborn Ones

We’ve come to the point of this research project where I make a suggestion for those gamers who’ve seen this information and still want to buy a Racing Gaming Chair. I have decided to go out of my way and perform a few interviews with different members of the Gaming Community, along with a few recommendations regarding their preferred Gaming Chairs.

A) The Maxnomic Dominator (CamTSB, Mane6 Game Developer) Price: $369.00 USD

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“I have had some un-enjoyable back problems for a good chunk of my life, and this chair is pretty dang comfortable for me. The chair is extremely adjustable both in terms of height adjustment, as well as in placement of the back support pillows, and the headrest pillows. The leaning and the lock-position for said lean is really nice when I don't want the chair to move too much while I'm doing something.”

B) The Arozzi Verona Pro (Lewis, Smash Bros. Community Member) Price: $259.99

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“This gaming chair is really good for personal comfort due to the adjustable cushions, height, and armrests. So you can fit it to what's most comfortable to you. An Office Chair is still more comfortable for sitting all day, but this chair is pretty good for Gaming.”

C) DxRacer King Series (Bruteforce123, GameDetectives) Price: $600 CAD

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“I'm a bigger fella’ so most chairs while I fit in them don't really feel like they supported me sufficiently. I barely feel like I am sitting in it most of the time its so comfortable. And since I tend to be in it for hours it certainly is nice to have.The construction quality really shows in that it doesn't feel weak, the bolts it can with are big and there's not a hint of wood or small thin pieces of metal that could be fatigued from use.”

As you may have noticed, the chairs tend to go at prices higher than $200 USD. The very reason behind this is the fact that the quality control is actually taken care of here and most of these chairs tend to be custom made in order to fit back problems or other sort of conditions. Of course, people can alternatively look for Office Chairs which offer a better effect.

Conclusion: Does the Chair make the gamer?

To be honest, I think that there is a very important point that needs to be made about Gaming Chairs themselves. They are definitely not a requirement for a gamer to actually be proficient at what they do. It’s an accessory, much like every single part of a computer that can be upgraded. There are definitely alternatives that can be way cheaper, especially with Office Chairs. However, everybody loves a very good looking chair to decorate their room, so you can’t blame them for making that choice.

Some of the common criticisms regarding Gaming Chairs come down to the design aspect. Some suggestions for improvements in chairs go along the lines of having the Pillows be filled with Foam, removing the armrests and have the pillows stick to the chair more securely. Of course, there is a large list of problems with the very core concept of Gaming Chairs. However, it should be noted that Racing Gaming Chairs are here to stay at this point. Unless the manufacturers of the Chairs shift their focus all of a sudden, we’ll have to deal with these flawed Chairs.

In the end, a Gaming Chair doesn’t make the gamer. It’s better to use the money and resources on buying materials such as Graphics Cards, Peripherals and other sorts of stuff. You’ll end up finding that even a bed can make a great seat for your gaming sessions.

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On 4/18/2019 at 10:52 AM, UleTheVee said:

As mentioned before, there has been a lot of advertisement about how Gaming Chairs are supposed to make a “True Gamer”. I’m pretty sure you’ve seen this before, a Gaming Chair is usually advertised behind a lot of bells and whistles.

you see this with everything these days whether chairs, keyboards, mice, joysticks, gamepads, whatever. i agree with you a lot of these products are just made to look pretty and "badass," and to me that seems gimmicky. but to each his own i guess. i'd rather save my $$$$ for more games.

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The issue is that this, as @TheSteelyardDweller pointed out, is that it's not just people who sell Gaming chairs that go about marketing like this- it's most other gaming products, and it extends even past gaming. Marketing ploys such as this are prevalent in daily life- companies claim their product is the best or it does this or that when in reality that product isn't the best investment of your money. It's become so ingrained in society, that much as I appreciate you pointing this out and trying to make others aware of it, nothing's really going to change in the near future. 

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What's funny is that those chairs don't look particularly comfortable to me. Especially that top one, which looks like it doesn't provide much upper back support (it leans back way too far for me).

I have chronic back/neck/shoulder problems, but I feel comfortable playing on my couch with my knees pulled up against my chest or sitting cross-legged. 

A PT told me that changing positions frequently is as important (if not more important in some ways) than the specific position(s) you sit in.

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2 minutes ago, StaceyPowers said:

What's funny is that those chairs don't look particularly comfortable to me. Especially that top one, which looks like it doesn't provide much upper back support (it leans back way too far for me).

I have chronic back/neck/shoulder problems, but I feel comfortable playing on my couch with my knees pulled up against my chest or sitting cross-legged. 

A PT told me that changing positions frequently is as important (if not more important in some ways) than the specific position(s) you sit in.

This is why I love playing on my bed. It allows me to shift positions freely without worrying about possible back problems

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I wouldn't encourage spend $200-300 on one of these chairs either. It's just a market gimmick as @UleTheVee said and I find it hilarious that some people still fall for it. I got a gaming chair, yes but it cost me like $40 or $45 dollars and it is pretty comfy for long gaming sessions but anything over $50 dollars is robbery.

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12 minutes ago, Alyxx said:

I got mine for free. My boss was cleaning out his office and was like "you want it?"

I wish my boss could give me one...too bad I don't have one 😞

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11 hours ago, Alyxx said:

I got mine for free. My boss was cleaning out his office and was like "you want it?"

Wow... That's the most riveting and tearjerking backstory.

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Honestly, I'd take any computer chair at this point. The one I currently use is just a regular computer chair, but it's an armless variety, and I broke the backrest off months ago. Don't ask me how; I have absolutely no idea. I guess it couldn't support my weight for very long... the screw broke, you see.

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