Still Not A Blog

Guilty Gaming

Posted in play by Greg on the October 18th, 2006

Ever since I was a small child I have wanted to play computer/video games. Every time I was at a friends house I would be mesmerized by the NES, Genesis, Atari or whatever system they had. My mother, wisely, prohibited the purchase of a gaming system for our home. She did, however, decide that a computer would be a good thing for us to have. I was delighted about the prospect since I understood that computers were really just glorified gaming platforms. And so, at the age of 10, I gave my mom a years worth of earnings to pay half the cost of our computer. And Greg, the gamer, was born. And so was Greg the computer programmer, technician and training expert. I tweaked-broke-repaired-modified-fixed-crashed-rebuilt our 486sx with its screaming 25 mhz and enormous 2 megabytes of RAM until I could play all the games that I wanted to play. Those were the days of making your own boot disks to change conventional/virtual memory settings just to get 256 color game to run. And constant battles over what to load to the puny hard drive and what to run from disk. And drooling over the new 100 MHz Pentium, floating point errors and all. It eventually taught me to build new computers from scratch as my computer became outdated. I credit all that with endowing me with the skills that made my later livelihood as a IT guy possible. And my mom told me I was wasting my time playing….. :)

These days, however, I have no such excuse. My 360 does not need any tweaking to do anything. Power on. Insert disc. Play. Despite the lack of redeeming aspects, I still like to play. I have discovered over the years what my pattern is. About once a year (twice if i am lucky) a really good game comes along that I enjoy immensely. I play it obsessively. I beat it once or twice. Then, a month later, I am done with it. The rest of the time I just play occasionally. I am left wondering about all the productive things I could have been doing. And anticipating the next game that might be as good….. :) Beyond the occasional immersion, playing has turned into a social activity for me. While I was in Chicago my friends and I would do our best to organize a gaming session every few weeks. These would usually involve 3-4 xboxs, 3-4 projectors and 4-20 participants. So far in NY, I don’t know enough people to make anything like that to happen. But hopefully I will as I make new friends here. So far though, the people I have met seem less interested in such activities. Perhaps they are more mature then me :) I have wondered if I should be growing out of gaming. The answer is probably moderation. The difficulty then becomes finding moderation. It is hard for me to say what that is. I’ll have to keep thinking about it. Any ideas?



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