The Gamer that doesn't Play Games
Video games are one of my favorite ways to pass the time. In high school I was all over the epic, sprawling RPG's that were jam-packed with action and story; shooters and other action games were fun too - I was never very good and always ended multiplayer matches near the bottom of the leaderboard, but I still had a lot of fun.
And then college happened.
I withered away some of the spare time that I had on games my freshman year, but as the years crept by in college I played games less and less. Part of it was about time - I didn't have much - but also when I did, I found what I needed my spare time for was relaxation and games were just too stressful and needed too much of my focus, attention and energy.
I still roughly keep in the loop of game-related news, but it's not something I'm totally on top of. I don't own a current-gen system and most of the games that come out would blow a circuit on my laptop. I browse the Steam shop and sigh quite often - so many epic RPGs like the type I would have salivated and binged before, but investing at least thirty hours of my time into a game just seems like so much effort.
But every now and then there have been games that broke through my defenses. Last summer, I got hooked on The Binding of Isaac, which is as delightfully demented as it sounds and also an absolute blast, and Minecraft because I am five and love legos.
A week or so ago I purchased Overwatch and my productive life has officially ended.
It was nice knowing you.
Why Overwatch is the Best Thing Evarrrrrr
Because it's a hell of a lot of fun and it's got a hell of a lot of personality.
Boom. That's it.
I think, ultimately, those are the only two things I need to get hooked on a game. Binding of Isaac, Minecraft, Dark Souls (which I still shamefully haven't beaten), Factorio, FTL, the Mass Effect Series, Red Dead Redemption, Skyrim, Spec Ops: The Line, Dragon Age, League of Legends, God of War, Prototype, Just Cause 2, Half Life 2, Portal - I'm sure I could keep on naming games, but all of the above have those two things in common with Overwatch - they are a hell of a lot of fun and they have a hell of a lot of personality. I even like Brütal Legend for the same reasons. Come at me, bro.
There's a trend in gaming (and the entertainment industry as a whole, really) to sequelize everything to death, and to me that seems to be the downfall of a lot of series that started out with great fun and personality. Call of Duty is a fantastic example; the first Modern Warfare was so much fun and, in spite of what one might normally think of when it comes to military shooters, had a large amount of personality. There have been a few great Call of Duty games since (Black Ops 2, anyone?), but on the whole the personality has been draining on a downward slope (Ghosts… euuugh) even though the games are still generally pretty fun.
Perhaps this is one of the reasons Infinite Warfare is backfiring so horribly.
Singleplayer or Multiplayer?
Not helpful - I'll elaborate.
I love being able to get completely lost in a world (singleplayer), but being competitive and trouncing scrubs in a match is hella exhilirating yo (multiplayer).
That said - I generally get into singleplayer games more easily than multiplayer. I got into League of Legends pretty hard because many of my friends were playing it, I even remember playing a bunch of Counter Strike: Source because of fwiendship, so I think that's a pretty key reason for me getting into a multiplayer game.
I have friends who play Overwatch, but I don't need to play with them. It's soooooo good.
But I think the main reason it can be difficult for me to get into multiplayer games sometimes is...
Is this the part where you're going to talk about the gaming community?
Yeah, a little.
"Online interactions" probably deserves its own blot post, so I will just condense things here:
I've been allowed to go on the internet since I was little. However, my parents made very sure that I knew not to talk to strangers on the internet and I really took that to heart. Perhaps a little bit too much; I find myself shying away from nearly all social interaction when it comes to online gaming. Kind of to an insane degree - when I used to play MMOs where part of the draw is this huge world populated by zillions of people (scientific fact), I very often would play as solo as possible - grouping up only because I REALLY NEEDED TO COMPLETE THIS QUEST GOSHDARNIT. I am just a bit of a lonerbug in multiplayer.
But also, the community itself can be a bit of a barrier for me sometimes. I perfectly realize that the majority of gamers are decent human beings - my beef isn't about the 90% of gamers who just want to have fun in this medium - but there is this really really really loud minority that really ruins everything for me. The same can be said of pretty much any community, actually.
Anonymity can make people act like complete asshats. When I'm playing a game, I want to have fun. What I don't want is some giant flopping dick screaming in my ear about how this team sucks so bad, or have the in-game chatbox be a double-flamethrower ragestorm, or be subjected to hearing/reading any form of toxic abuse and slur. It really turns me off of a game and it's part of the reason I've stopped playing MOBA's. I freaking love that style of game, but because each match is so long and so reliant on teamwork I take a pass because I don't want to be that guy who maybe let the team down or see someone else do so and have the chatbox go bananas.
90% of gamers are good people. Most of my friends I would call "gamers". But there's a few people...
At any rate, the mute button and I have become well acquainted. I really hate having to do that, but frankly I am not going to give some insecure troll the attention they so desperately crave.
that got sad :(
Yeah, I know.
I'll make it up to you - add me on battle.net and we can romp some scrubs in Overwatch, capiche? :)