Friday, April 8, 2011

A Shift in Acceptability

So, it has been a while and for those of you who know me, you know it has been a roller coaster. But I am back with a lot to say.

Where to next?

How about change?

In reality people like Josh and I are one of the first generations to experience games since childhood. I was five years old when my parents bought us a Nintendo Entertainment System. My elementary years were filled with hours of enjoyment of games like Super Mario Brothers and Tecmo Bowl. This gave way to the Super Nintendo which wowed me with Donkey Kong Country and of course the introduction to my favorite gaming series of all time and the reason that I buy all things Nintendo: Mario Kart. This led to the Nintendo 64, the Sega Dreamcast (Yeah, I went there), the Nintendo GameCube and now the Nintendo Wii. That’s 25 years of video gaming. When we were kids we dreamed of what we thought would make cool games. Some young players dreamed of games where a whole platoon of soldiers went into battle side by side battling enemies in giant fire fights. Others would imagine themselves as a lone warrior wielding magical weapons that would lay waste to gigantic monsters. Sports fans wanted in depth controls and realistic environments. As these dreamers grew up some eventually went on to make the games that they day dreamed about as kids. Games have matured. They have gotten older with those of us who grew up playing them. The features are more real, the graphics are mind blowing and many of the stories are attempting to replicate the movies with interactive sequences mixed in.

This is pretty drastic shift. The truth is as our culture grows more tolerant and generations play more games like Call of Duty, Halo, Red Dead Redemption and Assassin’s Creed it will become more acceptable to a younger audience that desperately needs the opportunity to be children to play games for older gamers. Today’s children have opportunities to enjoy updated versions of games like Super Mario Bros, the Legend of Zelda and even Pac Man. They are given the chance to have new experiences like the Lego games and Little Big Planet. However,the more I listen to what kids are saying the less I hear them talk about the family oriented stuff and more about rated T and M games. They don’t see people playing games like Mario and Little Big Planet, they see older siblings and parents who play Call of Duty. Naturally, that is what they will want to play as well. This is leading to a shift in acceptable playing age. If games like Halo and Assissin’s Creed are acceptable for this group of youngsters what will they grow up to make? Scary thought, huh?

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