Thursday, June 16, 2011

Casual vs Serious

I'm not a serious gamer. I don't even have a couch or a TV, let alone a Playstation or XBox. I don't play games on my computer. But at least I respect people who take these things seriously. CNN came out with an article today that frankly irked me. I'm actually suspicious that Doug Cross wrote it this way on purpose to make people angry just to make his point.

He sounds like a total n00b. Do your research. Spend 10 minutes perusing ThinkGeek. I don't care if you put it in quotes, I don't believe your interviewee really said she "never picked up a console until well after college." The hell? You don't PICK UP consoles. That's like saying, "I never picked up a car until I moved to the suburbs." And nobody says "X-box joystick." They were done with joysticks before the X-box was invented. Furthermore you lost your argument that she isn't your stereotypical gamer when you said she works at Georgia Tech. Where nobody would be "grinding out hours on his console or PC." They might grind out a 10 problem homework set for Emag, but then they actually still PLAY games, I'm pretty sure. You should spend 5 minutes on after you finish on Think Geek and learn a lot, CNN dude.
Photo from Only At Tech, where they chalk for LAN parties.
That's Local Area Network for the CNN n00b, where you bring
your PCs and hook them all together and play games
against each other.

Maybe he's just not a very good writer. What it the deal with the photo caption? "A woman plays games at the Sony PlayStation booth at last week's Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles." "A woman"? I think that might actually be Rileah Vanderbilt. And if it's not maybe you should have scrounged up a picture of her or Clare Grant or Felicia Day or any other famous woman gamer.
"I think sometimes, a lot of the people who are in the old-school mentality of hardcore gaming feel a little threatened with what's been happening over the past two or three years because it was, to them, almost this secret world," IGN's Blevins said. "It's like a 'We don't want you in our clubhouse' mentality."
Yes, they don't want you in our clubhouse if you're going to insult them with your lack of effort to grok the vocabulary. Gamers deserve to be just as snooty as French people when Americans wear a University of Tennessee t-shirt to a white tablecloth restaurant.

I played through Angry Birds, sure. I have played many games of Words With Friends. I've downloaded lots of other games to my iPhone just to try them out, like Medieval. Frankly I just don't like shooting men and horses with a crossbow when they're going to make that realistic "I've just been shot!" noise. It freaks me out a little bit. It's just not my thing. I'm more of a creator than a player. But I don't feel like theres any TENSION between me and my hardcore gamer friends. I like to watch them play games, like a movie I can talk back to. I have often PICKED UP an Xbox controller, mainly so I don't sit down on it, but still.

I think bridging this perceived divide between casual and hardcore gamers is going to depend on the casual gamers being graceful about it. Patton Oswalt already stirred up this pot with his Wired article saying the geeks have to let go of their exclusivity. They didn't like that idea. I think we can all just get along. But then again, some people are pretty touchy. (Sorry this College Humor video is flash)

1 comment:

  1. i am pretty sure the people at CNN do almost zero research when writing articles or news stories for their "news" channel. They always seem extremely out of touch - like the really awkward dad who is trying to be hip with what the kids these days are doing. It is so sad.