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My fight with disinterest, and disallusion with gaming....

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My fight with disinterest, disillusion with gaming....

Okay, since I screwed up my new blog post BIG TIME by not putting a title on it, and not being able to figure out how to fix it, I'll just repost it. If the Moderators can help, please, delete it. I can't seem to get rid of it on my end of the computer...

NOTICE: This will be a bit long...

When I wanted to get back to writing a blog on here, I wasn't sure what I was going to write about: how games are becoming less and less interesting to me? The Hardcore? Sean Malstrom? I didn't know, so maybe I can put it all together somehow...

I've been in this situation time and time again, where I find myself wanting to give up on gaming, and just stick with what I have. Maybe it's because I've only stuck with one game console (all being Nintendo) at a time, which I doubt is the main problem, because even when I had BOTH a 360 and a Wii, I didn't feel satisfied (and I don't like to have to keep up with two consoles, it takes up too much time). No, it's not because I'm expecting too much from games, I don't expect anything in return from any game company, just a game that's worth it's price and is fun, and maybe something I can come back and play again. Even with an optimistic, excited, open mind to it, most of the major games on 360 just didn't click with me at all, and I really, really tried to like these games (I ended up renting/borrowing any major games I played). I never could feel that 60 dollars for a game was justifiable (I only bought 1 used game when I had an Xbox 360), 50 is my limit on Wii games, but even then, I only buy like 4 games a year, if that many...

Now before you call me a whiny, jaded, hardcore Nintendo fanboy, let me inform you, I like ALL consoles, each one has something for every gamer, so I try not to hate on any console. Heck, for at least a year, I had a Xbox Live Gold Membership Account, and played/tried a number of games online with it. But other than Mass Effect, The Orange Box, Forza 2, and messing with Soul Calibur 4's character creation, I had more fun with Xbox Arcade's games, and I ended up purchasing a good amount of them. I can't tell you how much I enjoyed playing OutRun Arcade, Banjo Kazooie 1 and 2, Shadow Complex, Geometry Wars, and Marvel vs. Capcom 2.

So much fun in such a simple racing game....

So why stop with that if I enjoyed it so much? That's what I'm getting to. First off, when I really did own a 360 a few years ago, it was crapping out on me. I ended up getting rid of it, only to move out of my parents place, and my room mate had a 360. We both shared it fairly often this past year. Recently, he moved out, and now I just stick with my Nintendo Wii and my DS. And now, I can't really afford another console at this moment in time, and, I'm dating now (which I guess goes hand in hand). Like I said, with having two game consoles, I couldn't ever seem to keep how much time I played them in balance (addicted? More than likely). And, it wouldn't be fair to my girlfriend to spend all my time playing games, she's not really a gamer, which isn't a problem with me. She watches me play games from time to time, but, I try to get her to play along with me, be it Wii Sports or something simple and fun.

Yeah, it's fun still for me, get over it...

So why am I so divided on my feelings with games? I think some of it has to do with Sean Malstrom's articles. For at least a good half of this past year, I had become an avid reader on his blog. So many things I didn't think about with gaming had started to really sink in. I agreed with him, that disinterest is a big problem with gaming, that companies aren't listening to their customers as much, or that they refuse to even try to reach out to new potential customers; or the gaming industry's idiotic analysts and journalists, or it's self professed game gods (it takes more than one girl or man to make a game), and game companies dirty tactics. I really liked reading his blog. But then this happened....


A box, with a big fat recycle logo and a tie fighter cutout next to it. This sends him over the edge? THIS?! A BOX?! THIS IS WHAT BREAKS HIM?! This has suddenly become anti-consumer of Nintendo? Look, I don't like these boxes either, I think it makes it more possible for scratches to get onto your discs, or maybe (which I like), it is in fact, for helping the environment, and I'd rather not get into THAT debate, leave that to political pundits/politicians. There's pretty much nothing I, you, or anyone can do about it. “Oooh, we saved like fifteen cence per 5 boxes!”, I guess when it adds up, they do save more money, but really, they had to cut this much out of the box?

Getting back to talking about Malstrom, he's now professed to not post anymore on his site, believing this is anti-consumer. And for that, I just felt, low. Like seeing a hero give up. No, I didn't put the guy on that much a pedestal. It's just disheartening to see someone you enjoy hearing about/reading about just quit. But then, it hit me, and I couldn't believe it, but I'm starting to think that this guy is ALMOST like the Rush Limbaugh of gaming!

Do we really need this kinda guy in gaming?

I'm sure the Malstrom fans/readers/Malstrom himself are going to raze me for this. Look, I hate politics, and never want to get into them ever, end of story. And the last thing I wanna do is to mingle them in games. Unfortunately games are, for example, Elitism and telling everyone who's a gamer and who isn't by judging what they play (If they're playing games and having fun, who cares?). But there's a strong similarity between Limbaugh and Malstrom to me. How so? In only a FEW ways

Limbaugh is consistently negative on everything.

Limbaugh get's his listeners worked up, ready to get their guns and torches.

Limbaugh pats himself on the back.

Limbaugh is never wrong according to Limbaugh, and when he is, he simply ignores or denies it.

Now the last one is a somewhat a stretch. Because Malstrom has had a number of strong points about games, and sometimes hit the nail on the head. Heck, Limbaugh, on the RAREST of occasions, has had a good point on some things, but like I said, that's RARE. Malstrom has experience of business and law (and I'm willing to bet he probably does), and understands Blue Ocean strategy very well, something some game journalists should try to do instead of ignoring it.

Malstrom had me worked up, and agreeing with him on a number of levels, shovel ware, the bird-man fallacy, DLC, Lazy game companies and their hypocrisy, Nintendo's User Generated Content direction, heck even some of Nintendo's other bad moves in the past few years. Though I disagreed with some of his opinions on some games, I see things now that I didn't see in his articles before, he became the thing he disliked, a whiny, annoying hardcore gamer. He talked about the “good 'ol” days of gaming, and how companies of today have ruined it. How trying to make games art is just lucid thinking. I admit, those good 'ol times were great (some of those games still are!), but a lot of them are gone and in the past. I don't want every game to be an interactive movie, because I don't see myself returning to play it in ten years, when another game has already done it, and has done it better....

Will anyone play this in ten years? Maybe, Maybe not...

Now don't think I'm dissing Uncharted. Heck, I wouldn't mind giving that game a shot if I get a chance, but that was just an honest question is all. I'm just beginning to feel that a lot of games in this generation and the past one are not gonna be as remembered as well. This of course, could be a generational kind of thing. After all, some of the kids playing games today, don't necessarily like the games we played at their age. Their interpretation of games, and what makes them entertaining is/could be different.

So I guess I've sorted some things out from this, though I still feel mixed from how I feel about games these days. Maybe I need to take a break from them, which I've done, only to still find myself in this situation. Disinterest in gaming isn't something I like to go through, especially since I've enjoyed games so much in childhood. Maybe my time with gaming is coming to a close, maybe I should explore other game genres, or other consoles, which sounds like a good alternative, although I doubt it'll help, though I do have a Dreamcast I haven't touched in some time since I got it last year...

These are the things I'll be pondering for a while, and I hope that I haven't bored you to tears with this.
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Jonathan Holmes   1



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About Toadofskyone of us since 10:05 PM on 12.13.2008

Hi, I'm Toadofsky. If you're reading this blog, you've either...

A. Hit a typo, and found my blog
B. Bored out of your mind
C. Wanting to know who the heck would name themselves this?

Well, I came up with the name from Mario RPG, that composer at Tadpole pond.
Don't know why I chose it, I just liked it.

I also enjoy doing lots of photo shop work. Most of it is
pretty basic compared to what most make...

I love all kinds of music, but I stick with Techno, "Chill" music, punk, and my growing fondness for Ska.

Favorite music artists...
The Aquabats
Blink 182
Van Halen
James Brown
Beastie Boys

What kind of games do I play? I'll pick up any kind of game and at least try it once.
But my personal favorites are platforming, adventure, puzzle, and racing.

My personal favorites (in no particular order) are

Super Mario All Stars and World
Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island
Mischief Makers
Super Mario RPG
OutRun Arcade
Gradius 3
Wii Sports
Earthworm Jim 1 and 2
Virtua Fighter 5 (360 version)
New Super Mario Bros. Wii

I'm hoping to add a little bit of blogging, but mostly doing my own reviews of games,
if anyone cares to even read them...