Drop will make you a better person. Eventually. Right before you’re ready to claw out your eyes because the image keeps spinning and warping and for a minute you can’t tell if it’s you or the game.
In case you haven’t heard of it, Drop is a free, browser-based game from Mojang’s Markus “Notch” Persson. The premise is simple. You’re staring at a minimalistic, white, cubic scene while letters appear on the screen in a clockwise circle. The letters always spell out a word which must be typed perfectly to continue at a gradually increasing pace. If you mess up, then the letters move faster and you have a greater chance of failing. Miss too much and you lose.
Trust me when I say this game will leave you second guessing every key you press. My best score, as evidenced above, is 80. I’m thinking I should go back and play more because it builds character, but my heart is telling me, “No! I can’t take this kind of pressure!”
As frustrating as Drop is, it’s actually a good way to better yourself. For starters, it’s a great way to improve your typing skills. Oh, I know, you think you know how to type already. That’s so cute. I did too, before I played Drop. Hell, sometimes I even type the “right” way, with my pointer fingers stationed on the “F” and “J” keys. But no, Drop humbled me and it will humble you too. It taught me that even though I think I know where all the keys are, I really don’t. At one point, when it was moving really fast, I was repeatedly tapping “W” and cursing the computer because that’s where I thought “Q” should be.
It seems like a silly thing to get anxious and upset about, but that’s what Drop will do to you. The numbers keep coming and the first few times you play, you have no idea what to expect. You have to train yourself to expect the letters to appear in a clockwise swirl, and to not think about the word, just the letters instead. Not to mention the second you type a wrong letter, you start yourself down a slippery slope that will leave you frantically pressing keys in the hopes one will be the right one so you can finally spell “journey” correctly. The game tests people and I think it’s a good way of learning how to deal with stress and become more patient. After about five times playing Drop, I realized I was going to have to just accept the mistakes and not frantically try to fix things after I confused a lowercase “L” and “R.”
Of course, some people may never reach that realization and might instead smash their computer screen. People handle stress in differently and either way, a lesson is learned.
Finally, Drop trains you to focus on what’s important. My biggest downfall is, I would try to figure out what word the letters were spelling instead of just typing each letter as I saw it appear. I was paying attention to the wrong thing. If I had focused on single letters, I think I would have scored much higher. Instead, I’m trying to figure out where one word ends and the other begins, trying to piece it together as thought it might make typing the rest of the word easier. It didn’t, because it led to me making sloppy mistakes as I tried to figure out what to type instead of just typing the letters that were right there. That isn’t even factoring in the changing environment that is designed to distract players as the game gets progressively harder. If you want to do well, you have to decide what is important. Those letters are, and paying attention to anything else will only result in failure.
So there you go. Drop will help you become a better typist, manage stress and focus on what’s important. Of course, first you have to get past a point where you rage-quit every time you misspell “aware,” but that will come with time.