Ohhhh, you better get ready for a rant. Don’t worry, I’ll wait…
*waits patiently for readers to grab a popcorn and cream soda*
I’ve discovered that the online age of gaming has spoiled me. It’s spared the rod, and now I’m out of control and pitching a fit on the floor. And why? Cause I’m bored.
Ya, bored. I have at least four different games at my fingertips, and several four feet to my left on my Xbox 360…but the idea of playing them seems dreadful. I’d rather watch my obsessive compulsive dog clean his paws for 13 minutes straight. And it’s all because of the Internet.
Back in the day, when gaming was all about my personal best and getting a 100% save on my memory card, I could spend hours playing a game all by myself. You’d shake your head in pity if you heard how many hours I devoted to Final Fantasy Tactics. Hell, on more than one occasion I’d start a brand new save on one of my favorite games, just so I could name the main character something new. I’d spend weeks on titles, shower at least once within that time, then get back to it. Don’t judge my hygiene, if you’re not outside sweating, you’re not getting dirty. And yes, I’d always brush my teeth. I drank too much soda not to.
So then, one day, back in the 11th grade, when girls were still dazzling me with body parts of which I had no clue of their texture, density, or temperature, a friend introduces me to Diablo II. Now I had played Diablo in the past, and of course, spent ridiculous hours playing it, but my friend insisted this one was better, cause you could talk to people online. So I buy it, and spend the first few weeks on the single player campaign. That’s what I was accustomed to, and I enjoyed it. It’s fun, but I’m ready to try this new fangled “online gaming” thing he was talking about.
Just like that, you could see a comicy “BAM!” flash over my head, cause I was thrown for a loop. I had never experienced playing with other people. This was great! I would spend hours with my best friend killing monsters for loot, talking with fellow players about my unlucky streak with finding SoJs, and on more than one occasion, convince some poor sap that I was a real life girl so he’d give me stuff. That’s right, ladies, even online you can get schmucks to buy you stuff. You could be swimming in epics with just the click of a mouse (photos of yourself, even clothed ones, will net you gold for life). Did I feel bad? Kind of, but hell, I got a staff out of it.
Of course, as technology advanced, so to did my thirst for playing with friends. Everquest, Guild Wars, World of Warcraft, Halo, if it had an online component, I was probably on it. I was gallivanting through online spaces like a cock of the walk, flinging my gamer plumage in everyone’s face.
But I was a dad gum sucker.
Now, I can’t even bring myself to pick up a controller unless I know a friend or 4,000 will be one. You’d think with the vast library of online games that there’d always be someone on, but screw you, I’m not a terribly popular guy. I only know like five guys. So when they’re not on, playing a game feels about as compelling as sporting one of my wife’s thongs. Actually, worse than that, cause her thong’s are really comfortable, and make me feel sexy. I’m contemplating a landing strip in the shape of the Imperial Eagle. The Emperor protects in all things, even unflattering shrinkage from cold water.
Tonight is a perfect example of such a dilemma. I was sitting on the couch, debating in my head which thong I was going to wear tomorrow, when I had a small, small, ever so small inkling to play Diablo III (I’m a Blizzard fanboy). I get on facebook and message my resident D3 buddy, Tim. Why didn’t you answer my summons, Tim?! Oh gawd, why didn’t you answer?!? *ahem* Long story short, Tim never responded, and my urge to slay daemons ebbed. Luckily, it did give me time to update my online resume, but still, I wanted to kill something. Yes, I could have played by myself, but it’s soooooo boring.
I’ve tried everything to combat this, including convincing as many friends as I could to play my favorite games. But it appears people have real lives, because I rarely ever see them on. My best friend is off being awesome with his wife all the time (come to think of it, I’m not sure what he does with his time), Tim does Tim things. All of my WoW friends have quit for greener pastures. Diablo III is a ghost town. I haven’t even tried Guild Wars 2 in forever. It gives me more time to paint, which is good, but also bad, cause then I go buy more models. I spend a hell of a lot of time with my wife, but that’s also bad, because she’s starting to realize I’m terribly annoying and all my attractive one-liners are rip off of Family Guy quotes. And I talk in movie quotes, which I’ll blame on growing up with my friends. “Khaaaaaaaaaan!”
So, if you’re reading this…please buy and play my favorite games. Dear Lord, I’ll help you with anything you need. Gold? You got it. Monster slayings? Where do you want my two-handed sword. Gear? Hell, you don’t even have to pretend you’re a woman. I give items to friends. Just play.
And a big, sarcastic, non-thank you to the Internet for destroying my innocence and ability to play by myself…but don’t take your sweet, sweet online gaming ways away from me. I’m sorry I raised my voice. Kind of. Don’t go to sleep tonight. I’m writing Al Gore a stern letter about you.
To Do: Complain About Video Gaming