Every spring, I get an incurable and unshakable itch.
Neither my advancing age nor false positives of the past can weaken it. It prompts me to dust off old games, re-connect with old friends, and salivate for games right around the corner but an eternity away. It's a phenomenon reliably triggered by the video game industry's annual powder keg, E3.
...and, man, what an E3 it was this year.
For the first time in years, not only was I excited for what I'd be playing but for how the industry is improving. It's becoming more inclusive, producing more types of games, proving that video games will no longer by tied to a screen, and that industry giants aren't afraid to take risks.
For example, I couldn't give less of a shit about the announcement of a Shenmue III Kickstarter but it was super cool to see this reaction from those who do:
That being said, E3 also breeds unnecessary chest beating, flame warring, and platform evangelizing at an embarrassing clip. This unlovable underbelly of gaming is what inspired Jeff and I to start a community where that nonsense isn't welcome.
Games and many of the people who play them on a daily basis are awesome. Let's focus on that, shall we? Granted, the line between being an "enthusiast" and being "that guy/gal" is finer than I'd like to admit and we're all guilty of tripping over it every now and then.
Therefore, here's a quick list of reminders that I use when the worst of my hobby gets the best of my attitude about it:
Reminder #1: Video games are a form of entertainment
Entertainment should enrich your life and/or bring you joy. It is also a supplement to life, not the main course. Invest into it accordingly.
Reminder #2: Time and attention is valuable
No, I'm not going to play anything from your "essential, must play indie games" list. No, I'm not going to spend an hour of my time convincing you that $2.50 for Skyrim is worth it. No, I'm not responding to trolls. No, I'm not going to complain online about a review score. No, I'm not listening to a 3 hour gaming podcast. I've got more important and/or enjoyable shit to do and, honestly, so do you.
Reminder #3: Video games are best enjoyed with other people
I have a lot of friends who insist on playing alone and I get that. Games are a great vessel for escapism. However, games are competitive and social by design. Just like talking, having sex, debating politics, and back scratching, having at least one willing partner really ups the satisfaction. Even trolls would have more fun if they spent more time outside than on forums.
Have some of your own? Let me see 'em...
Thanks for reading,