The past few weeks we have seen a large discussion occurring in video games. From both journalists and players. The topics ranged anywhere from violence to sexism and to our First Amendment rights. First, we encountered the White House meeting with Vice President Joe Biden and “Leaders” of the video game industry. Next we saw Deep Silver wanting to sell some “Zombie Bait” which went too far. And lastly a new bill presented to congress that wants to ban the sales of mature and adult video games to minors. It has been a busy few weeks, and I’m ready to shut everything down.
I did have an entire article written about my opinion when it comes to the White House meeting. I was actually about to submit it here at Gamesbeat until I noticed that IGN had posted a “Super-mega-elite” article including twenty journalists views on the gun violence meeting. This is simply overkill. The article made me realize that I was sick and tired of all these discussions, and that all I wanted to do was go back to playing The Witcher 2. In other words I want to go back to enjoying my hobby, and not trying to show how important video games are. Not long after my epiphany the Deep Silver fiasco erupted, and on cue Twitter was ablaze. People do have a right to be outraged or upset about this terrible piece of living room art. But I believe there is an underline issue with all of these industry wide discussions. The issue is that we are too insecure about loving video games. Hell I’ll admit to it. When people ask what career I’m looking to get into, all I say is Journalism. Because every time I say Video Game Journalism I hear snickers in return. There is a deep down desire to show everyone how amazing video games can be, but there is a line. A line we all seem to cross way to quickly.
We do it all the time. With Major League Gaming, industry sales numbers, and constantly championing the idea that video games are pieces of art. We are so utterly insecure about our industry. It is clear that many of us have a deep passion for video games. For me it all began with the NIntendo Entertainment System. Video games have been apart of my life for a very long time. So much so I want my career to be based around them. My issue is not with loving the industry too much, my issue is that we rush to the defense to quickly. By assembling the best journalists, and putting all of them in one article looks more like insecurity than it does passion. I’m sure every one of them loves what they do and that they are good at it, but do we really need twenty of them to tell us the same thing? It appears that the video game industry has a major chip on its shoulder.
Above: Apparently this is what people look like while playing video games.
The next time something like this happens, when the next Hitman trailer appears, or the next pro-gaming team does something sexist, or god forbid another shooting where the culprit owned a copy of an FPS. Let’s not go on the defensive. We are getting older, we are getting smarter. Instead of grouping together our own task force of journalists, we just report the news and move on. I’m not saying we can’t talk about the issues. Please have discussions we all have opinions so let’s share them. But don’t think for a second that everyone has to agree with you. And stop trying to prove how great video games are. We don’t have to prove anything, not anymore.
Do we really need the validation from politics? If we keep doing this we will only reinforce the already false stereotype that video games have. That video games are toys for children. How about we act our age and move on with our lives and with our hobby. We just had one of the best years in history when it comes to amazing titles, yet no one is really talking about these games anymore. Its okay to discuss issues, but let’s not forget why we are here. We are here because we love playing video games, and we especially love sharing our experiences with other like minded people. Let’s be more optimistic and less sarcastic in 2013 and help make this year the greatest this industry has every seen.