We play games for a multitude of reasons. Some use them as a form of escapism after a long hard day. Some to reconnect with friends through online multiplayer and MMORPGs, forging stories and memories that will last a lifetime.
There are some of us, however, that use games to challenge ourselves to overcome seemingly impossible tasks.
Thankfully, there are a plethora of incredibly difficult games to choose from. But the games that set themselves out to be difficult, for the sake of being difficult (I'm looking at you Ninja Gaiden) are typically only enjoyed by the true masochists among us.
For us sane people who don't enjoy repeated punishment, these titles are just a sobering reminder of our shortcomings.
That doesn't mean that difficult games cannot be fun. Some of the best games ever made are nails, but they embody so much more than just twitchy controls and nightmare bosses. A well-balanced difficulty, that combines reflexes with intelligence, willpower and blind luck can create a gameplay loop that can be electrifying. Even if it is making you smash your controller.