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How to love a game?

We probably all love, or at least like, gaming as a whole. Destructoid is all about how we love our hobby and what we think about it and I guess, only a masochist would come here if he hated games. The question I asked myself recently however is: „How exactly do we love games? What do we do in order to show our appreciation of a certain title or genre?“. And after I thought for a while about it, I was ready for a blog-post.

The first and pretty obvious answer would be: “You play them!”. This is undeniably true, you can only love, what you played. But what is important in your gaming behaviour? Do you love a game more because you put more time into it? Then every RPG would be you most loved game, right? How about, how often you play it? How many times you have completed it? So many question marks...

I think that all these factors play a role. Let's face it, videogames are very time-consuming. Other media are way easier to deal with. Films are done with after two hours and books after one weekend (well, I guess it depends on the book). You might re-read or re-watch them if you liked them, but time consumption is not such a big deal as with videogames. Your standard games takes you about 8-12 hours to beat, with the notable exception of RPG's of course. Then there is the replay value: collectibles you missed the first time around, sub-missions you overlooked, new costumes and gimmicks for a second play-through. This easily boosts the time you spend with the game up to twenty hours. Since the amount of time we have for games is limited and there constantly coming new games, we have to make some tough decisions.

Just think about it: How much do you have to love a game to play it a second or third time even when there are many other new games waiting for you to play them? To give you a personal example: I completed Resident Evil 2 about 30 times. And I ask myself: Why? Why did I replay that game so often, if there were so many other games out there, that I could have played instead?
My guess is, that it all comes down to your first experience with your game. If that first time, was an absolute awesome time you will want to play it again. You want to catch that very first experience, conserve and relive it until the world ends. The sad thing is, that all the experiences that follow your first one, will never be identical to it. They don't have to be better or worse than your first time, but they will be different.

Also, why do I have more than one copy of the game? Sometimes there are many different versions of the game. It is quite possible that somebody who loves a certain game, collects all these differen versions of it. I also own two versions of Resident Evil 2, the first one being the original version for the Playstation 1, the second one being the awesome, but somewhat overlooked PC-Version of it. In fact, our love for videogames spawned the Collector Edition craze on the videogame market!

Another thing you could do in order to show your love is to write about it. Well, that's what we do here on Destructoid and on other platform too, right? But how does that exactly work? If you take a look around in diverse C-blogs around here, there are many different ways and concepts about how you can write about a game you love.

You could do a whole retrospective series about the genre you like, for example. Writing a review also is quite popular. Putting it into you Top Ten lists? Classic! Do a retro-corner style description of it? Also easy to find and popular.

One of the most interesting behaviours I have found for myself (and which I will adapt sooner or later) is to analyse a game. I mean, if you have replayed a game a dozen of times and you really have seen it all, you might be capable of finding stuff that nobody else finds. The result of such a love and analysing could be a timeline for a game series which does not have an official one (Zelda?). It could also lead to an in-depth analysation of Persona 3 an its motives. The possibilities are sheer endless! Heck, I have been writing on a No More Heroes analyse for months now!

Awesome No More Heroes Fanart by The Switcher

Doing a tribute to a game also is quite common. You can write, draw or make music? The internet is full of fanfictions, fanart and bands (or single persons) who do remixes of their favourite videogame tunes. Using your fantasy in order to expand on something you love is totally normal. The results can be absolutely amazing and they show your dedication and love to the game. And sometimes, a group of people even comes together in order to make a new game in a franchise or genre they love.

After all, videogames are able to inspire and provoke the same emotions, reactions and creativity as other media do.
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About Subenuone of us since 9:57 AM on 09.07.2008

Fulltime Journalist for the daily newspaper "Letzebuerger Journal". Worked as a freelance Videogame 'journalist' for that same newspaper for 2 years beforehand. Also, I'm the former News Editor over at www.Sega-Addicts.com. I also wrote a few frontpage stories here on Destructoid....
I also wrote for several weeks for www.Gamersyndrome.com

You can follow me on Twitter, if you want: @SvenWohl

Xbox-Live Gamertag: Neo Subenu

PSN: NeoSubenu

Wii Friend Code:

Tatsunoko vs. Capcom

The Conduit

Mario Kart Wii

Some of the Blog posts I'm proud of:
Groundhog Day: No More Heroes
Homo Ludens
No More Heroes and the deconstruction of the phallus

Xbox LIVE:Neo Subenu
PSN ID:NeoSubenu
Steam ID:http://steamcommunity.com/id/Sub
Mii code:4767 3726 4152 1201


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