Wednesday, October 6, 2010

My Gaming History Pt. 1

Welcome to part one of a new several part long blog series on The Thoughtful Gamers. This blog series is going to be a look back through time as I, magx01, recall my 20+ year long gaming “career,” if you will. I'll take you through the ups and downs, the trials, tribulations and the triumphs. The sleepless nights, the gorging on pizza, the tournaments, the competition, the fights. The friends made over gaming, and the friends lost ov-no wait, I can honestly say that I have never lost a friend because of gaming. That would be rather pathetic, would it not?

Anyways, in all seriousness, I've literally spent most of my life as a gamer, and I'd say that now, looking back, still being involved in it, seeing no end in sight, it's something that I will do until I either die or am no longer physically or mentally able. Sure, I can no longer play ten hours a day, several days a week, but I still get in some gaming time every chance I get. It might be only 4 hours a week these days, due to my illnesses and responsibilities, but I still manage to work it in. And I absolutely relish those rare weeks where I do get to play for extended hours.

I am gamer, hear me roar

Oh, how I still love to sit for hours on end, staring at the screen, lost in another world. I love the challenge, and I love the fact that I can have an effect on the world around me. I love making moral choices, I love facing a tough enemy and losing again and again, as I learn to adapt to a new adversary and in doing so, work towards that climactic moment when I finally conquer the fiend. That feeling is a feeling shared and revered by all gamers, and it's a rush that has not diminished over time (although the difficulty of these encounters has, for the most part).

And so, with my love for gaming made clear, let us travel back to the late 1980's where it all started with the opening of a gift on a fateful Christmas morning. When the wrapping paper and bow were removed from the box, there, in front of two positively stunned little kids, was a bounty far more vast and wondrous than any bestowed upon, or stolen by, a pirate, anytime in history. There, in that living room in the late 1980's, two middle class Canadian boys had just unveiled the ultimate gift:

The Nintendo Entertainment System, aka, the NES.

Inside the box was an NES console, 2 controllers, a Zapper, and two grey carts: Excitebike, and the Super Mario Bros./Duck Hunt combination cartridge. We had three games, and they were the coolest games we had never played. And not play them we did. All that night. See, despite the protestations of the two excited children, it was bedtime. No Nintendo would be played in that house until the next day. And so we retired to our respective bedrooms, both no doubt so excited we could hardly speak, let alone sleep.

Now, my memory may be off here, so don't take this next part as gospel, but I believe that I failed to get a single wink of sleep that night. Instead, I can recall doing thumb calisthenics, thumb pushups with 300 lbs on my back, and thumb wrestling matches between my left and right thumbs. See, the next day, I was going to get to lay my grubby mitts on an NES. And once I did, I wasn't planning on letting it go until I absolutely had to.

And so, I worked those thumbs in preparation all night long, even going so far as to get my dealer on the phone and having him deliver up to my bedroom window some anabolic steroids, which I injected directly into my thumbs. Sure, I was worried about thumb gyno, nail loss and even shrinking thumbpads, but I figured the extra strength and dexterity was worth the risk, and I also knew that the shrinkage would subside once I was off cycle. And so, like the Russians and Sylvester Stallone before me, I went the extra mile so that I could go the distance. I had the eye of the tiger, and it was time to kick that Nintendo's ass.

See you in part 2.



  1. Boy you aren't kidding about the difficulty not being the same as it used to be. I go back and play games from my past and they usually kick my ass all over the room. I've been spoiled by today's games and my gaming ability has suffered the price.

    Nice expansion on the thumb steroids joke by the way.

  2. Definitely. People have been complaining that Castlevania: Lords of Shadow is hard. LMAO! Tell them to play the original NES Castlevania. Or even worse, the arcade one, Haunted Castle!

    Today's games are spoiling us, and it sucks. I watched a video for Fable III today and they STILL have the stupid 'breadcrumb trail' type b.s that fucking directs you on where to go every second of the game. Ugh. And apparently they dummbed down the combat YET AGAIN (II was dumbed down)in their quest to make it more "accesible." Bullshit. If it was any more accesible my grandmother could play it with her hands tied behind her back.

    Could you even die in Fable II? I don't think you could.

  3. Thanks btw. Hope you enjoyed it.

  4. Super Mario Bros and Duckhunt combined? It's like a plate of chips with half of them full of shit but the skin is opaque so you can't tell which are full of shit and which are normal chips...

    I don't think I'll retain my gaming habits past this generation.. As much as I love gaming currently I'm pretty sure I'm going to drop it when the next generation comes around.

    And being given an NES and then told you cannot play it until the next day is a massive pisstake..

  5. It's because they are already spoiled. I remember back when I had to start a game on easy if I wanted to survive and even when you had no difficulty options. Now I know that a lower difficulty isn't even an option for me. They aren't fun if there isn't a little challenge after all.

    I hadn't heard that they have further dumbed down the comment in Fable 3. To be honest I'm not sure how much more they could simplify it other then using less buttons. Please tell me that isn't what their doing.

  6. You're probably wondering where I've been. Well, my computer officially died like fuck a few weeks ago, so I won't be around for a while. I'm using someone else's laptop right now, which sucks a shovelfull of ass, but at least I can leave comments to keep in touch. (No jokes about "inappropriate touching" unless I allow it)

    And you should play Comic Jumper if you miss old school difficulty in games. Just like the NES library, Comic Jumper is hard for AAAALL the wrong reasons lol.

    P.S. I never understood that motivational poster with the five fat guys sittin around. They don't look like gamers, there are no videogames anywhere in that picture! They look like those guys that hang out and play poker EVERY goddamn night at each other's houses, the fucking losers.

  7. Vestsao: You're really quitting gaming?

    Yikes. :(

    Dragonymos: I don't believe they simplified the controls, but they did (even further) diminish the magic system, and it seems as though you have less melee moves than you did in Fable 1. They also did some other stuff but I couldn't keep watching. Once they started talking about making it accessible for even non gamers, and reducing (again, even further) the rpg elements, I turned off the video.

    Syko: That sucks, bro. Can't wait to have you from the back....wait....

    As for Comic Jumper, I hadn't heard anything about it, so I had no idea it was that hard. Hard for the wrong reasons eh? Yep, definitely NES nostalgia there. Like Castlevania and your inability to control yourself in mid air and Ninja Gaiden's respawn bullshit.


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