Promoted from our Community Blogs!
[Enter the anti-Badger. –Mr Andy Dixon]
Note: The Wombat could be anyone — a Destructoid community member, a gaemz jurnalizmer, even some random Dutch guy. They could be just one person or Legion. You’ll probably never find out who they really are, which is a thing I typed for no other reason than to keep up with the joke. Welcome The Wombat to Destructoid everybody!
I’ve never loved so many people in the gaming community in all my life.
Because of 2014, I learned to love the game developers who have earned the goodwill of a loyal consumer following by continuing to put out great video games, supporting fan-requested games (one of which ended up becoming the game of the year for many people), and finding new ways to bring beloved characters to life both digitally and in the real world. I’ve learned to love both old and new indie game developers who put their most brilliant ideas into a game, and who manage to keep up direct interaction with their fanbase all while slaving away on their projects. I’ve learned to love fun-loving, open-minded game enthusiasts who treat anyone who enjoys playing video games like close friends. I’ve learned to love the gamers who don’t mind what you play as long as you have fun. I’ve learned to love the gamers who try to find ways to make their favorite pastime more accessible to a wider variety of people.
I’ve learned to love that Hatred can be both something that raises interesting free speech issues to think about, and something that can just be ignored entirely. I’ve learned to expect that even when people on the Internet are being dicks to one another, I’ll be able to filter out the bullshit from the thoughtful comments. I’ve learned to love how getting people to talk calmly with you is surprisingly easily if you take the first step and don’t descend into namecalling.
I love that I’m able to love all these things, while continuing to enjoy video games for their own sake. I love myself for it and sometimes I masturbate to myself a little bit. Liking things gets me so fucking hot you guys. So I’m going to start thanking people, including myself, and see if that helps me cum harder.
Nintendo, and other game developers
Nintendo has brightened up the videogame community in ways that we should never forget. It has used billions of yen in company funds to brings us amazing new installments for beloved series. It’s shown us that it loves us enough to fund Bayonetta 2, a game that many wanted but which was never going to make any company any kind of decent money. It’s shown us that DLC is not an inherently dirty word, but can be a great addition to a video game as long as it’s worth its price. Whether by making great new tracks for Mario Kart 8 or by tying its DLC to sweet figurines of Luigi our favorite characters.
Other developers have done some great work this year too. Telltale brought us an intriguing detective story with The Wolf Among Us, BioWare made Dragon Age better than ever before, Supergiant possibly one-upped Bastion with Transistor while giving us another gorgeous soundtrack, and Ubisoft is not invited to this party because I’m trying to keep this post happy dammit!
Game devs have created a culture where consumers can get that little bit of extra enjoyment out of their lives by buying expertly crafted fun-on-a-disc. People often stereotype gamers as being a bunch of nerds who go apeshit over the hundredth installment of whatever has an Italian plumber in it. All of that is completely true, but at the same time those people forget that there’s no greater joy in the world than Nerd Joy. Not to be confused. Lots of game devs are like your cool uncle who takes you to a theme park after you offered to help him with some chores. They’re offering consumers a million different thrills of story and gameplay mechanics, like virtual BJs for the soul. Which is not creepy at all I swear.
If gamers would look back on their year and focus on the plethora of good times they had with the games that do not suck (or if they did suck, sucked in the good “virtual BJ” kind of way. STILL NOT CREEPY), if they started to see themselves as individual thinkers who bought the games they could expect to love rather than as a hive-mind who bought a game because everyone was doing it and then complained that it wasn’t good, maybe I wouldn’t have had to write this counterblog. We’d have an ever greater capability of love in the gaming community if we continued to do what we enjoy most, and let everybody else do the same. We would welcome change with open arms, because even if it isn’t something that we enjoy, our own favorite games are still waiting for us and the new ones are bound to be great experiences for someone out there. Game developers have built a fanbase of incredibly devoted people wearing Eevee T-shirts who will gladly invite people for a round of Smash Bros. to show why this shit’s so glorious. It’s beautiful to watch. It’s even more beautiful to watch other people watching it, and I’m trying to make an Inception joke here but I got nothin’. So… Eevee.
Sometimes, nerds hits the jackpot. They can go and move up in the world by writing about the thing they enjoy so much. They become Gaemz Jurnalizmers. The hidden pitfall, of course, is that there’s only so much to talk about in video games. The war in Ukraine has nothing to do with video games, but Guilty Gear Xrd Sign just came out and that may or may not be fucking sweet. To figure out whether or not said game is, quote, “fucking sweet”, you ask a Gaemz Jurnalizmer. Like Chris Carter! He’s a Jurnalizmer like the best of them, what with him doing all of that Jurnalizms. About Gaemz. But there’s more than just reviews, and sometimes other issues in the industry need to be talked about. But have no fear, just call Captain Gaemz Jurnalizms!
Don’t worry, this is as annoying to type as it is to read. I feel your pain.
But even despite having a limited range of topics and an even more limited range of influence, sometimes game journalists fuck up. Fucking up is no good. But Jurnalizmers are people too, so fucking up is kind of their natural state of being, much like the rest of us. And honestly I don’t understand what the big crusade is all about, this all seems like an issue we could easily sit and talk about. Maybe we should give that a go in 2015? New Year’s Resolution, calling it. Despite all of their fuck-ups, I for one still love our bloggers/journalists/jurnalizmers/Chris Carter. I love that I can go on Destructoid to see whether Hyrule Warriors really holds up as well as I’d hoped. I love that we can all get together and fap over Kirby: Supah Rainbow. And I even love that they can be the ones who raise the worthwhile questions in the games industry. Is there such a thing as too large boobs on a game character? How are female assassins too expensive? Is Hatred even okay? Even if discussion doesn’t always follow, I love the food for thought it gives me. Far from being “fucking useless, self important hacks”, I appreciate our journalists and bloggers for being the nerds they are. Like us, but with jobs. And I appreciate Destructoid especially for giving us a nerd home (and sometimes jobs).
Anyway, this is the year that I continued to truly love Gaemz Jurnalizmers, YouTubers, and anyone else who would do what they enjoy not only for their own benefit but also for the rest of us. Also cocks.
People have woken up to the fact that sometimes the best thing for us to do is leave any sort of strife to the strifers and continue doing what we love. Discussion is all fine and dandy when it’s organized, but when a handful of poopyfaces try to ruin all of our fun, there’s only one thing to do: you don’t let them. These poopyfaces are only a very small percentage of game enthusiasts as a whole anyway. Even when they are loud, persistent, and dedicated to “winning” whatever it is they’re trying to win, I’ve got some bad news for them. I can have fun louder than you can tweet. Watch me.
Gaming culture is the same as it has always been: a ‘place’ for video game enthusiasts of all kinds to come together to dabble in each other’s enthusiasm. I’ll tell you why you should really play Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, but only if you share what you loved about Shadow of Mordor. Actually, just share it regardless! The only goal of most of us gamers is to talk to people who share the interest, and maybe play some games together while we’re at it. God knows nobody on the outside will. So, what’s the ultimate objective? Having more fun of course! We want to be heroes, so we had game devs invent a virtual problem, and then convinced ourselves that we have to solve it or else…the planet will probably blow up or something? I’ll be fucked if I know, because it could be anything! It sure has the NPCs in a frenzy though, so I’m sure whatever it is Evil McDarkLordiPants has planned can’t be anything good!
You can’t forget that the years of ire and disrespect that the gaming community has received from the mainstream media has us all looking for the like-minded individuals who we aren’t always able to find elsewhere. When you feel judged and patronized for who you are and what you love, it’s easy to settle in a place filled with similar outcasts. Nerd Joy is best joy, and nerd understanding is best understanding. The mainstream media has had a good laugh at the video game industry, pointing at our hobby as proof that we’re the weird geeks that they’ve always said we were. But we know better and we continue to know better. We have musicians, lawyers, Canadians, writers, and so much more. And we all enjoy video games.
The only thing that Destructoid had to do was to offer us a platform to be ourselves. We still don’t want any of the aforementioned poopyfaces in our midst, but otherwise you’re golden! Want to critique a game? Still golden. Want to say you think a game might be harmful or harmless/shitty or not shitty? The goldenest. But the second that you turn that discussion into a fight, you might be a poopyface and we will reserve the right to look sternly at you and probably send you unrelated .gifs. Possibly about fucking videogames. Or possibly about Jesus H. Christ.
Gaemz Jurnalizmers of Destructoid heeded that call, and its platform stands. Staff and community alike continued to love video games, and continued to find comfort in the knowledge that there are other people out there who also love video games. And Jesus H. Christ .gifs.
Internet commenters and friends
Here is where some of the self-loving comes in. In case you haven’t guessed, I’m a member of the Destructoid community. Also an enigmatic mystery amnesiac and a wombat. And yet I’m still fapping here, just like all the other fappers who see the Internet as a tissue for all of their nerdgasming, too preoccupied with cool things to use it for anything not actively resembling procrastination.
Part of the reason I chose to write this anonymously is because I want you to feel like this could have been written by anyone in the industry. I want you to think it could have come from Jim Sterling, or Shigeru Miyamoto, or anyone in the Destructoid community. It’s not that I’m afraid my words will come back to bite me. It’s that I’m hoping that they’ll have more of an effect if they come from a wombat, because wombats are great. Though not as great as Eevee. In hindsight, I totally should’ve named myself The Eevee. Didn’t want to step on The Emolga Editorial’s toes though. Shit, I’m just rambling now. Eevee.
If you made it through that incoherent mess of a paragraph, that may have been an explanation, but it definitely wasn’t an excuse. I have no excuse for furiously fapping and using this wombat form to gasm all my gasms and more gasms onto your computer monitors. I have no excuse for any of it. Because I am a wombat, and what the fuck are you going to do to a wombat?
The truth is, fapping wombats like me are the reason that gaming culture could still be great in admittedly hectic 2014. Huddled together by an identity labeled childish by the world at large, fueled by dick jokes and enjoying video games with each other, and empowered by a website that appreciates its community as much as it does its front page news, us wombats are [*insert some sort of clever metaphor for doing fun things with video games*]. Fapping wombats aren’t afraid to show their e-selves in a blog like this, and they are ultimately the reason why ‘shutting the fuck up and just playing games’ is still a valid strategy.
Maybe someday the rest of the world will figure out that we have a lot to offer, not only despite our love for video games, but because of it. Maybe it’ll notice how we have created a culture that values making awesome things, lifting others up, and enjoying the simple things in life even if virtual. Until that time, the best thing we can do is make sure that we’re more fapping wombat than poopyface. A lot of people out there in video game land have long ago agreed in unison that if video games are a part of your life, you can be one of us. We’ll play your favorites with you, kick your ass at our favorites, and then put our newfound friendship to the ultimate test with Mario Kart. And maybe one day the world will see. Even if it doesn’t, we’ll have a hell of a good time.
You don’t need to blog about it, or make a speedrun, or dissect a game’s story implications. Just have fun with video games in any way that you see fit. That’s what 2014 means to me. No matter the adversity, video games are a thing that you can enjoy. And the community is filled with fuckable people.
Our little videogame clubhouse is filled with joyful nerds, witty people, and a Wombat. If you don’t like it, what the fuck is even wrong with you?! I’m going to do everything in my power to continue that trend in 2015. I hope you do too.