hopper ~ hanger ~ stopper

by Stormfish February. 14, 2014 3468 views

computer games are part of my life like outdoors, traveling, making music and photography. i have played them ever since i had access to my first computer, back in 1989 or so. i wrote about them when i was a computer journalist. i tired to even get into game industry to be part of developing games myself (an attempt that failed badly, which today i am glad about).

there were times when people looked at me in irritation, took me for a geek, a reality escapist. many of my friends, still today, look down on me with pitiful eyes; believing that i am wasting my time which i could otherwise spend so much more useful with all those other hobbies, sports, books… and whatever is the currently accepted leisure time filler.

here is some reasons why i love playing computer games:

~ they provide a playground of adventures that are entirely non-consequential in reality. yes, i believe that is an advantage. whatever i do in a computer game will have no influence on anything in the real world. it stay all within the virtuality of the game. it is a closed environment that doesn't leak; and as much as we can alter inside of the game, nothing is changed outside. no monster i kill, no enemy i shoot, no mine i exploit, no resource i deplenish is taking anything away from reality.

~ they confront me with fantasies and conceptual imagination unavailable in reality. really, it's all about flying, discovering, building, even, conquering, killing, about superpowers and challenges i will never have to face in my life (and gladly can live without). they stimulate about every fiber of my brain with ideas and concepts and perceptions and impulses which are at my hand to command; and which otherwise in reality are only available in rare, far apart and rather arbitrarily thrown in moments; granted occasionally but more often denied.

~ they consume my idle time that otherwise may be spent with much worse activities. basically, they keep me out of harm's way, as much as preventing me from doing things that could really hurt others. yes i know, this is an odd argument: but i do not think of myself solely as a good doer; i at least as much have the potential (and proven tendency) to destroy and ruin, to make things worse than better. by sticking to virtual adventures, nobody gets hurt. see point one above.

~ last but not least, computer games are funny. ok, not all of them - there is different styles and there are some games that have no humor at all. but most of them ARE fun, ironic, a parody of some or other reality, by the nature of their art. i enjoy their twinkering irony, i chuckle when i recognize some developer's bow to a comic icon, i find the way how people's relations, emotions, dealings with each other are portrayed and chunkily reflected in these “avatars” and side characters, how even the “hero” one steers through it's prescripted fate is often just a hilarious parody of one's own dreams of grandeur and pathos.

computerspielemuseum berlin [computerspielemuseum.de], 2012

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Roxanne 5 years, 6 months ago

so interesting. i love your description of it all. i get it. and it helps me get Emmett because he is a true lover of video games. i have dabbled in games and am enjoying watching Emmett get excited about it and also panicking because there is so much controversy about kids and games. your post is helpful !

5 years, 6 months ago Edited
Teo Montana 5 years, 6 months ago

I have to say i don't play a lot of games,but i am a Laura Croft fan ever sense i bumped into a film crew in Cambodia, when they were filming "Tomb Raider." Sorry to say i didn't see Angelina Jolie….I really have to get me one of those action dolls!!! :)))

5 years, 6 months ago Edited
Jacki 5 years, 7 months ago

despite your lengthly attempt to explain... I STILL don't get people interest in them! :)

5 years, 7 months ago Edited
Josy 5 years, 7 months ago

I don't play either, but I can understand your motivations :)

5 years, 7 months ago Edited
Marilyn Grimble 5 years, 7 months ago

I have never played a computer game!
Too late to start - there are so many things I want to cram into my last years.
Too sedentary for me and I don't find your photos encouraging, but then, why should they? :-)

5 years, 7 months ago Edited
Larry Sample 5 years, 7 months ago

Reminding me of an old song with refrain "Whatever gets you through the night". I am not a gamer by choice. Tried it a couple of times and just didn't get it. But as Pope Francis so famously recently asked, "Who am I to judge"? Do your own thing, man. I sometimes worry that the games that have so much killing are influencing our youth in a not so cool way. But then so is Fox News!

5 years, 7 months ago Edited
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