I’m not a “Video Game Nerd”. I’m a Gamer.
Gamers are rarely ever looked at in a positive way. Typically, they are looked down upon by most people in the world. Especially as they get older. They call us names like “nerd”, “dweeb”, “geek”, etc. and normally we sit and take it lying down. Today I’m speaking for all gamers that have been made fun of, ridiculed, teased, or whatever else, when they talk publically about one of their favorite hobbies.
A couple stories to set the mood:
The other day at work, I was talking about God of War with one of my co-workers. We were talking about what a badass Kratos is and how we wish we could be like him not caring about anything but personal vengeance on everyone. Then a girl (who, even though she had worked there for years, she had just came back from leave b/c she had a child, and I was was meeting for the ifrst time her for the first time) interrupts our conversation and looks at me dead in the face and asks, “Oh my god, are you one of those video game nerds?” My dude next to me kind of laughed out loud, I guess trying to hide his embarrassment. I, however, actually got insanely pissed off. “No I’m not. I’m not a ‘video game nerd’, I’m a gamer” I said proudly.
Meanwhile, at my second job, I was taking a break from my boring cubicle life when the hot girl of the office walked past. If you’ve read my first article ever on this blog, you are somewhat aware of my struggles with women. She came out of nowhere being all friendly, “Hey Kevin, how are you” then looked at my computer screen and there was the gameplay video of Mass Effect 3 playing. Did she see it? I have no clue. Was I embarrassed? Yeah, a little at first. Then I got to thinking about how much the light that people who play video games are looked in irks that crap out of me. I got more pissed than I did with that chick that called me a video game nerd. And that’s what inspired this piece.
Now, before I get angry, I will let everyone know that I do make fun of myself at times with video games. Moreso in a way that makes light of the situation. I know people make fun gamers, and look at them in that negative connotation. For example, currently I’m playing mass effect (as you probably got when I mentioned me watching the gameplay of mass effect 3). There is no misunderstanding in my mind that it is a geeky game. You’re a human saving or destroying other human or alien life, traveling across galaxies, spitting game and possibly hooking up with a blue alien. Me and my roommate actually refer to it as “getting nerdy” whenever we know we’re going to sit down and get heavily into mass effect for the night. But it is a joke. I’m making fun of myself. However, simply because I’m making fun of myself does not give you the right to begin making fun of me as well. That belief is more firm when the person dishing out the hate is not a gamer themselves.
Gaming is my hobby. It’s not my life. I have two jobs, I go to school, I go out and get social with friends of mine, but ultimately, I feel no need to defend myself. I game when I’m bored or I’m too broke to afford an evening out with my friends. I pride myself that although I am a gamer, I have a life outside of it. Is there anything wrong with people who’s life is video games? Absolutely not. Look at the long list at the end of every video game when the credits come up and take note of all the people that have made video games their life. Chances are some of those people are making more money than we are. But at the end of the day, these people are doing what they love, and are doing it as a career. If you’re hating on them, you’re doing it out of jealousy.
There are a lot of geeky hobbies out there. Look at all the people that play Magic. It is my belief that no community of hobby enthusiasts are looked at in a darker light than these people. I’ll admit that I have been guilty of making fun of them, but who are we to judge? So what if they play some lame ass card game? You don’t see them making of people who listen to music, knit, crochet, work on cars, or occupy their time with any other hobby that people may possess. So why don’t we all lay off?
That’s basically the point I’m trying to get across here. All you people that make fun of us: LAY THE F*** OFF. Damn right I’m a gamer. I’m proud of it too. I don’t care what anyone thinks of me when I sit down from a stressful day at either one of my two jobs, lay in bed and sit playing any one of my games. It eases my mind, and let’s me escape my life for a couple hours (sounds like an addiction…oh well). Video games are fun, and they’re an outlet. Go play God of War after getting yelled at by your boss from missing a deadline and tell me you don’t immediately feel better. Have a rematch between your favorite sports team and the team they just lost to in Madden or NBA 2K and tell me you aren’t smiling when you get that W.
Again, video games are a hobby. Yes, some people pursue them as careers, but the gamers that actually pursue that career path are few and far between. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH BEING A GAMER. So all you closet gamers, come on out. All you people that rip on us for enjoying our hobby can either join us or leave us alone.