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Why We Game: A Celebration of Our Favorite Hobby

Keep it positive, San Diego.

I just got an email today saying how I did not get the job I applied for. After a little time wallowing in self-pity, I decide to get my mind off of this and fire up Tomb Raider: Anniversary instead. Because in that game it does not matter how many times Lara falls to her death; I can still get through the level. The real world is not always fair; some people get a different set of rules and challenges than others. And even if you work harder than anyone else and be the best, it still may not be enough.

In video games, however, if you give it your all and put in enough time to master the game in question, you can overcome any obstacle. You can take down that hydra two hundred times your size. You can find all one hundred twenty stars Bowser hid in Peach’s castle. You can beat Dark Souls. It’s a warm escape from the ugliness the real world has to offer, where determination and skill are all you need to accomplish what you want.

I do not play games to escape from the real world. Rather they are a nice vacation from it, one where I can accomplish anything in a fun way if I put my mind to it. Also I can fly and shoot lasers.

--Casey Curran

I play video games for the stories. I used to be a big fan of fantasy, and they have become an evolution of books for me. If you think about it, every game has some kind of story, no matter how small. The great ones take an interesting concept or idea and extrapolate it into their work.

The thing I love most about games is that they are like interactive movies. I can't think of any other medium that gives you as much control over what happens on the screen. At its core, you are the one that controls the destiny of that person or entity that you invest in. In the future, I want to see even more ways to have the story react to the decisions you make and tailor the experience to give you many paths to choose from til the end.


Why do I play games? That's a pretty complex question, and I'll need more than a couple of paragraphs to fully explain it, but condensed down for the purposes of Julian's article, here goes: I game because games are interactive. I game because games are immersive. Games allow me to do things that I would never do in real life for a variety of reasons: moral, phobic, or impossible. I game to escape the humdrum of every day existence or to relieve stress. I game to experience stories from the driver's seat, so to speak. I game because it is fun and I enjoy it.

The games I play reflect this: most games that I play are story-driven. Genre and generation or platform comes second to story. Adventure, action, RPG, platformer; Genesis, NES, PC, PS3, Xbox; doesn't really matter as long as the story is good. The games without stories—casual games if you want to call them that—help me relax and focus my mind on other things. And the arcade games, well, they're just fun. I don't need any other reason than that. As games have evolved over time from the simplicity of text adventures and arcade games like Asteroids, my interest in them has only grown stronger. When I was a little kid, I always used to imagine how cool it would be to be a part of my favorite movies, TV shows, and books. Games allow me to do that.


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Super Step Contributing Writer

02/15/2015 at 01:35 AM

Sense of adventure seems to be the common theme here and I would have to say that's a big part of the reason I game as well. That plus Casey's point about actually having hard work and determination pay off (having spent a year in the "real" world after college before coming back, I know exactly where he's coming from) is what I mean when I say games make me feel like I'm "doing something."

Now if only I'd put it as eloquently as other people. lol Great article!

Matt Snee Staff Writer

02/15/2015 at 05:23 AM

great job guys!


02/15/2015 at 05:14 PM

Page 4 is the sexiest page. I'm on it with Julian and we totally own it.

I'm glad this feature finally came out, it turned out really great. There were more contributers than I thought, and a lot of interesting perspectives.

Julian Titus Senior Editor

02/16/2015 at 01:02 AM

I put you on the same page with me on purpose. It just felt right, since we go so far back with our blogging. Cool

The Last Ninja

02/15/2015 at 11:41 PM

Everybody makes very valid points. Awesome article! It's great to be able to include everyone. Pixlbit should do stuff like this more often.

Julian Titus Senior Editor

02/16/2015 at 01:02 AM

I would love for us to do more of this. Sorry it took so long to get it published!


02/16/2015 at 02:43 PM

Great job putting this together, Julian. I shared on FB, hoping some of my non-gaming older friends might read it and give them a better understanding of those of us who do game. No response from any of them, though.


02/17/2015 at 12:34 AM

Well this is certainly a pleasant surprise. I had forgotten about this. It's great to see my submission on here. Not to mention all the other great replies. Smile


02/17/2015 at 08:51 PM

I forgot I contributed something to this.


02/18/2015 at 08:49 AM

Excellent Julian, Excellent.

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