Lighten up! That doesn't mean stop defending your favorites, hardcore or otherwise! Just be more productive about it, try listening, as well as talking.
The hardcore status doesn't change if you tell a fellow gamer about the great time you had playing Jet Set Radio Future, or about how much fun it is to catch Elebits for a few hours. Discuss the "Guilty pleasure" games, the ones with very little content, but hours of entertainment.
You can still be hardcore, after you write a review about something relatively low key, raving about how great Oddworld: Munch's Oddysee was. Or, if you pick up a controller with the kid down the street, and enjoy an afternoon of Lego Starwars. Be just as serious about your time spent on Nintendogs as Resident Evil.
Hardcore gaming doesn't have
to be a status war, trying to size each other up based on gamer score, or how many times we've beaten Ninja Gaiden Black – those are boasting rights, but shouldn't dictate what gamers are "supposed" to play. Let a conversation cover all plains of gaming, from Smash Bros. To Silent Hill.
I would like to be allowed to store Kameo on the same bookshelf as Bioshock, and still be accepted in this hardcore community, if that's all the same to you guys. If that means calling myself a casual gamer, so be it! I'd rather have fun, then try
to sound cool by taping the hardcore label to my forehead. Play the hardcore stuff, but give yourself a treat once in a while with something more laid back.
I suppose that wasn't so much "hatred" as "ongoing irritation."
Now, imagine me, only being a video game equal rights activist - playing Oblivion in one hand, and Mario Superstar Baseball in the other.