Okay, okay, here’s my answers to the Cannot Be Tamed Gaming Questionnaire. I found many of these questions pretty silly. I feel like writing my own questionnaire with hard-hitting, insightful questions like, “If you were a ferret, what kind of video game controller would you use?”
1. When did you start playing video games? 2. What is the first game you remember playing?
Somewhere around 1980-ish. I don’t remember if I had an Atari 2600 or a TRS-80 Color Computer first, though.
The first game I remember playing (i.e. that was good enough to make a lasting impression) was either Dungeons of Daggorath or a co-op asteroids-clone called Color Meteroids where one person controlled movement and another person controlled firing. (Both CoCo games.)
3. PC or Console? 4. XBox, PlayStation, or Wii?
I have a PS3 that is still in a moving box unpacked. Even when it was hooked up, all I did was run the Netflix app. At one time I had planned to get an Xbox One but now I think I would get a PS4. I’ve heard the PS4 controller is better.
5. What’s the best game you’ve ever played? 6. What’s the worst game you’ve ever played?
Who remembers that? For me, it changes all the time. The best game I’ve played in the last couple of months is The Witcher 2. I remember thinking that Bioshock Infinite was the best game ever, but now I barely remember it. Half-Life was a game-changer when it came out. Quake, QuakeWorld, and Quake 2 were the best for a while because I played them “competitively.” Ultima Online was the best for a while because it was the first MMO I ever played. Then Asheron’s Call was the best because it was better than UO.
The worst game wouldn’t even register for me because I generally don’t play games I don’t like. I remember being extremely disappointed with the co-op in the original Baldur’s Gate, though.
7. Name a game that was popular/critically adored that you just didn’t like.
Call of Duty multi-player, any version. I can’t keep up with the kids anymore. Also, I found the introduction of RPG elements into shooters pretty annoying because it made people who played longer even more impossible to beat.
Oh, Lineage II is another one. I quit as soon as I saw it was a click-to-move game.
8. Name a game that was poorly received that you really like.
Recently, ESO. At least until I stopped liking it hehe.
I don’t know if it was poorly received so much as unknown but I like Mortal Online in small doses. It gives me that UO nostalgia feeling. It’s hard to play a full loot, free-for-all PvP game in limited time blocks, though. You really need big chunks of time when there’s the risk of losing everything.
9. What are your favourite game genres?
RPGs and Shooters. Although as I’ve gotten older I don’t play very many shooters, partly because of aging reflexes and partly because every shooter has been basically the exact same game for the last fifteen years.
By the way, I credit Dungeons of Daggorath (mentioned above) with starting my love for both RPGs and Shooters.
10. Who is your favourite game protagonist?
My favourite [sic, hehe] is whatever I’m playing at the time. There’s a long list of protagonists I’ve liked: Altaïr* and Ezio from Assassin’s Creed, the Mass Effect guy whose name I can’t remember off the top of my head, Booker from Bioshock Infinite, Lara Croft in the latest Tomb Raider reboot, the girl in Mirror’s Edge whose name I forgot, some of the Grand Theft Auto characters, the guy from Saint’s Row 3 and 4.
I’ve been fascinated by the people who have responded to this question with “me.” (e.g. TAGN, Belghast) At no point do I ever think that “I” am in these games I’m playing, much in the same way I don’t think “I” am in books I read. Even if I make a game character from scratch, I’m building a character who is distinctly different from me. I might wonder what I would do if I were in the protagonist’s situation, and that might influence how I direct the game character, but that’s about the extent of my connection to the protagonists. (Though I suppose you could say there is some part of me in every character I create.)
11. Describe your perfect video game.
Easy to learn, hard to master. Never repetitious.
12. What video game character do have you have a crush on?
Ha! What a silly question. Maybe the red-head in Dragon’s Age.. Leliana? Elizabeth from Bioshock Infinite? Much like novels and movies, if a part is written well, the viewer/reader/player is going to form some kind of attachment to the character. For me it ends when I finish the game, though.
13. What game has the best music?
I don’t know about “best” but this question reminds me that I thought it was super cool that Nine Inch Nails did the soundtrack for Quake.
Video game music unfortunately doesn’t make much of an impact on me, which is weird because I love movie soundtracks. Very often I turn off game music so that I can watch television at the same time.
14. Most memorable moment in a game: 15. Scariest moment in a game: 16. Most heart-wrenching moment in a game:
All of these would come from Olden Days when I played Quake matches with my clan in tournaments. The times we barely won, the times we almost won, things like that. I remember being scared to death in the very first “competitive” match I played, which was a 2 on 2 Capture The Flag match. We came from behind to win that match, so that would be a great candidate for most memorable moment in a game, too. One day I still hope to convert some of these old, old Quake match demos into YouTube videos.
17. What are your favourite websites/blogs about games?
See blogroll. And there are probably tons that I’ve missed because I’m terrible at blogrolls, sorry.
18. What’s the last game you finished?
The Witcher 2.
19. What future releases are you most excited about?
Currently, The Witcher 3.
20. Do you identify as a gamer?
Only while playing games and around other gamers. I generally don’t talk about games with “normals” because they think at best it’s weird and at worst it’s self-destructive.
I guess this question is aimed at uncovering my thoughts on the whole “real” gamer controversy. I can understand the need to believe that how one spends their time is important, and I can understand the competitive urge to be better than one’s peers, but I think I’ve outgrown all of that when it comes to video games. The only people that I think deserve to be put into a niche of their own are those kids who fly around the world playing in e-sports LAN tournaments and such.
21. Why do you play video games?
Because it’s cheap and fun. Duh. :)
* Yeah that’s an umlaut, baby! Also a test of utf-8 compatibility.