A Parallel Gaming-verse
I assume it is safe to say that we all adore the whole “pretend” to be had in gaming. Why else would we love it so dearly?
Take a look at books, movies and in this case, games. It consists purely out of imagination and it’s filled to the circumference with worlds subsisting of make-believe.
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Even the “realistic” games have some sort of fictional characteristic. You may die from a bullet-wound to the shoulder if the wound is not treated ideally and above all that, you’ll need time for it to heal. It won’t be fun playing a game where you have to wait weeks for one wound to heal. It wouldn’t be a game. It would be Hell on Earth in pixel-form.
Personally, I’m a big fan when it comes to the topic of invented worlds and scenarios where you have to make decisions and see the consequences unfold; scenarios where I wouldn’t even be in if I were paid. Scenarios in a game or a world where a reset-button exists and indeed, functions.
The idea of a parallel universe or an alternate reality has been explored multiple times and games have been an ideal way to do so. Take Assassin’s Creed for example. It would’ve been nice if it solely focused on the ancestors, but add the Apple of Eden idea and another guy running around in the future and it’s a whole other ball-game.
World War II is nowhere near fun or indeed anything but grim. Add an Irishman with a tendency for blowing up Nazi-structures, an interesting free-roaming mechanic and lots of explosions alongside a story about revenge. Don’t forget about the artistic aspect for the differentiation between suppressed and freed areas. You’ve got a fun game. That’s the thing; it’s a game. Nothing real-life or indeed real people being killed. No real lives are being taken.
I’d like to take this whole perception and apply it not to a game, but to the whole gaming industry. It will never happen, so there’s no reason it should stop us if we’re enjoying our narratives with a dash of fiction. In my case: a few truckloads of fiction.
Let’s see what we have, shall we?
I’ve mentioned not long ago that gaming tends to have an inferiority complex about itself. Unfortunately, that is indeed the case.
If we were to take that idea and turn the tables a little bit, we have not only an interesting turn of events but also a complete change of the current perspective.
Gaming is more important than your studies and your sports. If you are not playing games on a daily basis and you’re sneakily running off to play rugby or soccer, you’ll be in serious trouble.
“Son… You’ve not played anything this week and for that I am afraid we will have to take you to the public guillotine or the public incineration room… We’ll offer you this last chance to decide something for yourself.”
Come to think about it, that sounds more like a dictatorship led by the gaming industry. Take away the death penalties and you’ve got some sweet rules to live by.
Most of us, indeed not everyone, know the feel of being nagged about sitting in front of the PC or TV playing games yet again. It’s not the most comfortable of feels. It’s a pain in the buttock.
Now, imagine the world where you’re encouraged to play games. It is preferred.
Another aspect about gaming that people like to throw in your face, is the fact that it is unhealthy. Unhealthy if you play it in prolonged sessions. Let us put a twist on that idea as well.
Gaming makes you all the more healthy. The more you play, the better shape you’re currently in. Play a lot of Assassin’s Creed and you gain strength. Play a lot of Devil May Cry and gain a six-pack. A genuine six-pack. Not a six-pack of beer. (Although that would also be an added bonus.) Play a lot of Spec Ops The Line and you’re genuinely a horrible person… Wait, what!?
Scratch that last one.
Play a lot of shooters and gain real-life shooting skills. Play puzzle or puzzles-type games and have an IQ that will put Albert Einstein to shame.
Gaming IS your income. The more you play, the more you get paid.
Gaming has been getting crap from all directions and from a lot of people. People being dissatisfied by a sequel or not liking a game at all. People who think they know everything, when they should just stay silent.
Imagine a world where EVERYONE is happy with their hobby. (Or indeed, occupation, as mentioned above.)
It’s not a case about fanboys complaining about everything they dislike with the new property in the series.
Speaking of which…
Sequels have caused a lot of migraines. Not just for developers and publishers, but to most gamers disagreeing with the cry of the complete nutter not being happy with the latest sequel or latest take on a familiar franchise. (-cough- Devil May Cry. -cough-)
Simple solution: no sequels whatsoever.
Every game will have a lot more thought put into it and new ideas will surface more often.
Personally, I’m not against sequels, but other people’s moaning made me wish some sequels into a bottomless pit.
We would certainly miss out on some great ones, so it’s a tough one…
No one in a multiplayer match calling the other players a c%#*. Done.
Another social interaction I, personally, would love is a face to face chat with a developer or even the whole development team. Bundle that with a cup of coffee and choc-chip muffin and you’ve got some pleasant and interesting discussions ahead of you.
All of these ideas are impractical. I wouldn’t mind having some of them coming to fruition. That, my fellow gamers, that’s the magic of imagining or allowing yourself to get lost in a world of make believe.
You’re a gamer, enjoy it.