I’ve been spending far too much time on-line with Halo 3. Yes, it’s nearly an addiction. I told myself the thrill of fragging folks from around the world would wear off, but sadly it hasn’t. Somedays I actually look forward to the time when I can sit down and play. Honestly I haven’t felt this way about a video game for a long, long time. Is it a bit weird that a 30-something would love to do this?
Not at all. We grew up with this. Sure I remember the time before video games. We went outside to play. But then I remember the envy of the friends who had the Atari 2600, Colecovision, or even an Apple II. I can remember the Christmas morning when my brothers and I opened a NES from under the tree. We spent hours in front of that thing. To this day I still can’t beat SuperMario Brothers, try as I might, I just can’t.
In college, one guy had a N64 that we hooked up to the big-screen TV in our dorm lounge, which led to long nights of Deathmatch in Goldeneye and 4-way racing in MarioCart. It also led to social alienation from the fairer sex. It wasn’t just guys geeking out, it was community bonding.
For a long time, I didn’t play on-line. It was too expensive and the Internet was too expensive and many places I lived only had access to dial-up. But whenI bought my 360, that all changed. There is really something incredible about being able toplay the same game as 200,000 people scattered across the world. It’s amazing that you can play against 7 other folks in an 8-way Deathmatch. It truly blows my mind.
It is a nice escape. For an hour I can just sit and zone out, talk trash and concentrate on nothing but trying to survive. It’s freeing. The cares of the day drift away and for a moment the economy doesn’t matter, the election doesn’t matter, the price of gas doesn’t matter. All that matters is the game and the fun we’re having. Maybe I’m immature, stunted in my growth, but I beg to differ. I just have different skills than some.
Here’s a couple of screenshots from games I’ve played recently.
There you have it.