Video Games Grew Up With Me

Anyone who was born in the early 80’s knows what I mean, but I think 1982 everything lines up perfectly. Atari was video games infancy, and was already around when I was born. Graduated kindergarten and soon had an NES, and at 5th grade the Super Nintendo was out, which was video game’s middle school phase.

Then I graduated grade school and into the 3rd dimension with the Nintendo 64, and a year later Diamond Viper v330. When high school was over I graduated to PlayStation 2 and Xbox Classic.

The strange part is, by the time I would have graduated college from a 4 or 6 year degree, I also graduated from playing video games at all. Around 2007 is the last I remember being into playing games regularly. Portal 2 in 2011 was the only exception, but for good reason.

I’ve also been thinking about the progression of video game history by comparing it to the evolution of film. You could say that moving from the bleeps and bloops of the NES to actual sound effects on SNES was like when films finally had sound instead of a piano or photoplayer.

The Nintendo 64 generation was able to bring arcade level games into our homes, just like the invention of the television. And even on older box TVs, moving up to the 3rd dimension “expanded our horizons” just like the invention of widescreen theaters. Of course, widescreen TVs themselves kinda ruins my analogy, but its a silly comparison anyway.

But then again, I loved it when games finally had cinematic cutscenes and started feeling more like a movie. I’ve heard that some modern games went overboard with it, so I know it’s not always a good thing. But when it’s done right, it’s one of the best parts of a good game. A good game also includes being able to skip cutscenes, of course.

As much as I almost wish I had all this modern technology when I was young, I’m still glad I got to experience the evolution of games as it happened. I can’t imagine what it would be like to have had Nintendo 64 all my life, instead of waiting until highschool.

I wouldn’t want it that way though, nothing could compare to using a thumbstick when it was brand new. Or feeling force feedback for the first time, or a game with full voiceovers. And the voices in StarFox 64 weren’t really that good, but they were so lovably bad it was even better because of it. Some things get lost in translation but the essence of it made it work.

Anyway, sorry to jet, but I’m in a hurry.

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