Recently a friend and I had a discussion about what made us the types of gamers that we apparently are. I guess it really has to do with what kinds of games that you started with. When I was young, we didn’t have a computer. My first real experience with video games was my parents’ Intellivision. I remember playing Frogger, The Empire Strikes Back, Armor Battle, Las Vegas Poker and Blackjack, and others. I also remember playing in Microsoft paint and playing a flight battle game on my uncle’s Tandy 2000 computer.
Growing up we also had an NES. We only had 1 game for a long time on that system. That of course was Super Mario Bros and Duck Hunt. We did rent some video games from the local video rental shop, but we didn’t actually own any other games. I remember asking my father for more video games and he simply told me “Well you haven’t beaten the one you’ve got yet.” So that was our deal, I save the princess, my sister and I get more video games.
So I had a mission. I played that game until my thumbs hurt. I utilized the warp pipes to get to where I needed to go faster, I hopped on skinny pieces of land in the sky, I went through the water level in the final castle “super” and then I didn’t have to dodge all of the bullets and hammers from “King Koopa”. I simply ran through him to drop the bridge. I saved the princess, and come Christmas, we had all kinds of new games. It was a sweet success.
Later on in 1995, we got our first computer. I remember playing the original Simcity, Chessmaster 2000, and X-Wing and just learning general things about the computer. Of course, I knew nothing of the command line or any of that. In 2000, we finally got the internet. I loved tinkering with things, loved taking pictures and modifying them and I loved making little cartoons with a program called swish. We really didn’t have a good computer. So I didn’t really play any kind of intensive game on the computer. In 2003, a year before I graduated High School, we finally got a computer a DVD player. It ran the brand new Windows XP. (I have saved this computer from impending death several times actually. It still runs! My Dad was using this computer up until about 2 weeks ago.) I played games like The Sims, Roller Coaster Tycoon, and some Star Wars games like Rebel Assault.
In Late 2004, I had just started College and had just declared my major as Computer Science. I really needed my own machine to write programs on without interfering with the family PC. I played a few computer games including Medal of Honor. I never did much get into games on the computer outside of your run of the mill simulation games. I was more of a Playstation, Sega, or Nintendo fan.
I guess when I think “Computer Game”, I think of simulation games. Maybe this bias is wrong. Maybe I should give PC Gaming another chance. It is a little easier to move the camers with the mouse versus a joystick on a controller, I’m just not as much of a fan on w a s & d and a bunch of other random keys that do various things in games are never the same across games.
Throughout this history, I did own other consoles. I owned a Sega Genesis and a Playstation. But after the Playstation, I missed out on an entire generation of games. I focused on things other than video games. I missed out on PS2 and the XBox. And to be honest, the only reason I got a PS3 was for the Blu-ray player. But since I’ve gotten the PS3, I have played more games than I have played in years. And I don’t consider myself a “gamer” anymore. I’m definitely a casual gamer. Maybe that’s another reason I like consoles. Pure convenience.
With consoles, you don’t have to worry about the hardware being compatible with the software. The software is specifically designed for the hardware. And that is a nice feeling to have that perfect match.