Thursday, January 29, 2009

Things that make you go Hmmmm...Video games

And if you get that reference, well, I won't feel so damn old.

I used to live with one of my ex-girlfriends. She and I bought my first adult PC together. (I had PCs when I was a child that my grandparents bought.) She bought it primarily for AOL chat, I wanted it primarily for the awesome games that were out on the PC at the time. (Diablo, Unreal, etc...) She used to sit on the couch for hours on end watching TV and drinking beer, I used to sit on the PC for hours on end, laughing with my friends as we played games online together.

According to her, I was addicted to video games, but she was normal. Hmmmm.

I have friends now who spend their entire day - we're talking at work as well as when they are home - updating their Facebook and My Space pages and screwing around with the applications on those sites, sending me countless invites to things that I really have no interest in doing. (Take the "Are you from the 80s test", have a virtual beer for peace, join the toenail clipping group!) Then they see that I have 20 or 30 hours logged on World of Warcraft for the week, and they call me an addict. Hmmmm.

And the best one: People at work who regale me with tales of how they go home and play Xbox all night long, and yet when I mention I like World of Warcraft and play a lot, I am the addict. Hmmmm.

For the record, I do like World of Warcraft a lot. I also like a lot of shooter games, and some other games as well. I sometimes log over 40 hours of Warcraft a week. Rarely am I actually playing the game that much. I log in, I think of something I wanted to take care of, and I walk away from the game with the intention of coming right back. Usually I come back and I have been kicked out for being idle too long. I also don't have any sort of television programming, so I don't spend any time surfing channels. (Which so many people get sucked into for hours, but I'm the one with the problem?)

I think most of the issue is that society at large has decided that video games are the evil scapegoat of our time, much like Dungeons and Dragons and metal music were when I was younger. You're OK if you watch 60 hours of TV a week, but God forbid you play some World of Warcraft, then you're an addict! (And the Xbox people making fun of PC gamers? Those people are just stupid hypocrites.)

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