“Gaming Brats” or “We’ve Come a Long Way From Pong”
Syp’s post yesterday was quite thought-provoking. This is the contemporary age of video gaming, where we are exposed to such marvelous worlds filled with life and possibilities. With features such as life-like animations, realistic weather effects and environments that looks polished, detailed and textured to blur the line between fiction and reality, developers are pushing the boundaries of next generation games. Every week we are given newer titles to engage us, worlds to explore, threats to thwart and kingdoms to conquer. We relish in not only the complexity and atmosphere of these alternate realities, but also in the fact that the possibilities, both in terms of the choice of titles available, and the paths we choose to take in a game, are endless.
However, as humans we have an innate need to bitch, moan and complain. Having evolved from a culture that reveled in controlling a yellow mouth that ate dots and berries while being chased by ghosts who it could also devour if it were high on smaller dots, to controlling a photo-realistic character that swoons the ladies, thrashes the bad guys, and manages to look incredibly suave all the while doing it, we have gotten spoiled. Where we were once content running a frog through oncoming traffic, we’re unhappy if a flower in a meticulously detailed tropical forest doesn’t disintegrate when we fire an entire magazine of hollow-points into it. Where we were once jumping with joy having successfully evaded a large gorillas flaming barrels, we get upset if a life-like character’s lips don’t sync with the utmost precision with the audio file of its dialogue.
Somehow, despite the fact that we are blessed with an entertainment medium that provides endless hours of immersive, alternate-reality entertainment, we, myself included, have the audacity to point out, complain about and throw temper tantrums about even the most benign and insignificant flaws we can find in our favorite titles. So what if the games aren’t perfect? So what if the advanced physics failed to adequately animate an object? So what if lip-syncing is inherently an imperfect science? So what if the graphics aren’t top-of-the-line, state-of-the-art. Hell, we even find room in our infinite collective wisdom to complain about how graphically intense a game is, and how current technology cannot run it at optimal settings (I am looking at all you whiners that complained when Crysis first came out!)
Syp is right. In my wildest dreams, I never thought I would one day be playing the games I have the privilege of playing today. And I wonder, maybe this is the same conclusion Frank at Overly Positive came to recently.