Hey sports fans. Long time no see. The reason why I've been absent from these pages leaving Richie to hold the fort since January is because I got burnt out by video games. This probably happens to most gamers every now and then but since January this year, I've just become so frustrated with games and the games industry I pretty much cut them out of my life for a while.
I haven't stopped playing them. At the moment the magical trilogy of Resident Evil Revelations, Pokemon Y and Fire Emblem: Awakening in my 3DS keep me ticking along but my perception of what the video game journalists and industry would consider, I'm not really playing games. Those games are old. Nobody is talking about them still. Why play those? Why not shell out a still-ridiculous amount of money for a new console that it appears nobody wants and nobody seems to know what to with.
I get a bit obsessive about things and most frequently, video games is one of those things I obsess about. I'll eat, sleep, write and think about video games all the time. I'll surround myself with merchandise. I'll buy games I never play. I'll listen to a video game soundtrack on a loop for weeks on end. But, sadly, I don't have anyone to play video games with regularly. I miss the rapport. I miss playing some of the world's worst games but having a blast because it's with a buddy. So these days I kinda feel like I'm gaming alone and from time to time. Like now, I just feel like the games industry isn't interested in me. I'm not interested in anything on any of the three main consoles. I have no faith in mobile games. I feel like a troglodyte because I still enjoy games on my Wii and PS2 and the zealous 'gaming' community makes me sick. It's a toxic and insular community of the worst kind. As for the gaming 'press' thanks to Google Reader dying, I've been without a decent feed reader and, you know what? I don't miss it. I don't miss the adverts pretending to be copy. I don't miss the opinion posts from people who should be restrained and never be allowed to write about anything. Ever. I don't miss games journalists writing about how much they hate themselves and they're audience.
I find myself watching let's plays and listening to podcasts as the main way I consume games these days and actually, it saves me money and I have a better time all round. I'm not interested in the industry. I'm not interested in developers. I'm interested in a handful of interesting gamers who are passionate about games and the banter they have between each other but I'm so relieved and a little less stressed because I just don't care at the moment.
Don't get me wrong, this is wholly my issue. It may give you the shit eating grinz(tm) to read a thousand 'articles' on a single 'leaked' 'leaked' screenshot. It might fill your knickers when cherished franchises get the 'mobile treatment' and how Capcom and Squeenix seem to be in a secret race to bankrupting themselves. But I can't help personify games and gaming and increasingly it's not of interest to me. I get little out of being a 'gamer' and more out of just enjoying a game here and a game there. The entire industry doesn't seem like it can organise anything approaching a sustainable vision and I'm tired. I'm tired of bullshots. I'm tired of second or triple guessing whether a leak is a leak or a publicity stunt. I'm tired of the collective ignorance of the gaming community. I'm tired of CEOs not seeming to realise how awful their decisions are. I'm tired of once loved characters and Universes being shilled for a quick buck. I'm tired of being lied to. I'm tired of the game journalists and their chimpanzee tea party version of journalism. I'm tired of the same old arguments. I'm tired from the non-existent marketing departments turning the whole industry into a house of cards where everyone is making the same game with slightly different colour palettes. I'm tired of unrealistic sales figures. I'm tired of make-or-break launch weekend windows. I'm tired of how unsustainable the industry is. I'm tired of the general incompetency across the board. I'm tired of the big hits increasingly become completely accidental rather than by design. I'm tired of things just not working. I'm tired of trying to find depth in the shallowest of experiences. I'm tired of trying to be an ambassador for the medium. It's becoming so corporately and creatively stale that anyone not ploughing the same
furrows trenches we've had since the late 1990's is heralded as the next best thing despite the vast possibility spaces that games could but just aren't exploring.
I'll snap out of it. I always do. A game will come out that tops my faith up a bit and I'll be back in, shit stained smile and everything but for the time being, the whole industry could burn and I'd learn how to play the fiddle.