[Editor's note: blehman talks about the death of split-screen gaming for his Monthly Musing piece. -- CTZ]
Remember the good old days? The days where you'd roll over to your buddy's house, or vice-versa, and spend hours sitting around playing games? It may not even have to be the good old days though. It could be as recently as last week, or even last night. But time, time isn't what's important here. Enjoyment is what's important. The difference to me now is how much more enjoyable it used to be to play games with your buddies in the same room, over what it's turned into now.
I'm talking about the split-screen mechanic, and why I think it's now overshadowed and surpassed in most cases by online. I believe that due to the massive increase in technology and graphics, we're better off playing more online and less in person. Even though we lose some of that togetherness that arcades and couches gave us, I think that, in the end, we're even more connected now than ever.
But there are still a lot of games that I'd rather play one-on-one in the same house, on the same couch, on the same screen. Most of them are same screen multiplayer games however, games like Street Fighter II and Castle Crashers. It's just not the same hearing trash talked into your ear in a headset from an opponent miles and miles away compared to it being right there, two feet from each other screaming obscenities or silently, frantically, mashing buttons, tongue twisted outside the corner of your mouth, breath held until one goes down. It's definitely not the same with you not being able to see the agony, embarrassment, and shame in an opponent's eyes after beating him ten times in a row with a pink character.
You know which one you are.
In the simpler times, things stood out more, and blended less into a gigantic background of HD brown and grey. Meh, maybe I'm just getting older and need better glasses. The point is, I just don't find split-screen gaming suits my needs anymore.
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