The Player 1 principle

I'm sure someone has written something about this somewhere else but hey! Who cares about them. Now, as much as everyone laments about online etiquette or lack thereof, there is also such a thing as offline etiquette. I don't mean treating NPCs nicely or anything, jeees that would be terrible. But this issue recently came to light when my good buddy and old skool CatchtheMonkeyandOtherGames B69 member, Robisgay and his lovely girlfriend moved into my house. You see, he plays games which is great but also terrible because the rules of offline etiquette don't tend to cover such situations very well.

Let me explain: When playing multiplayer games, regardless of skill level or experience, your gaming chi is directly affected by which player you are.

Player 1 Player 1 has excellent gaming chi, master of the menu screens and ideally placed in the top left corner of the screen in split screen games and on the left, from the start of the round, in beat 'em ups. Even in games without split screens (Mashed, Micro Machines) player 1's points are in the top left which allows quick reference mid game. So, with such good gaming chi player 1 is the position everybody wants but there are some important ground rules! If the gaming session is at a person's house on that person's console that person is entitled, absolutely, no questions asked to be player 1. This can be particularly frustrating when playing games that player 1 has never played before and doesn't know how to menu juggle. Also the rules are sketchy on what happens when two players are living in the same house and they both have the same console, when players in the same house jointly own a console, when one player has previously broken another player's console and has agreed to share their console with them until it is fixed or when someone brings a console to a normally non-consoled house. This could be decided by who owns the specific console who's game is being played or even who has the save game on their memory card to decide who gets the illustrious position of player 1. The lesson is if you think you may have a chance then challenge! The gaming gods will reward you with extra chi.

Player 2 For as long as there have been computer games player 1 and player 2 have always competed, even in cooperative games competition for high scores or medikits can turn into epic one upmanship. Player 2 has some good chi going on. Decent screen/points postition. However, the mere artefact that player 2 is called player 2 means that player 2 is out to prove that skill ain't about a stupid number. The gaming gods of vengeance smile on Player 2. Player 2 is often the leader of a team in team vs matches, albeit normally player 4.

Player 3 The Dark Horse. Player 3, whilst not ideally placed is still in a solid spot when it comes to points and split screen positions. Quite often Player 3 can beat player 1 and player 2 whilst they fued with each other because it's harder to read player 3's screen. Also, some games decided to give player 3 and player 4 a fighting chance by introducing the any player can press the "last screen or back" button whilst menu juggling ability (thanks EA). Although this gives no in-game advantage it can undermine Player 1's menu master authority. Player 3 has a lot to prove and quite often will be a good player but in the Player 3 position merely because player 1 and player 2 are cohabitors or lovers even (Note to boyfriend/girlfriend players if you do not give your partner the position of P2 to your P1 it is a clear sign you do not love them, like the door thing in Carlito's Way for the gamer generation).

Player 4 Oh dear. Poor player 4. Typically player 4 has to use the gaypad, you know the MADKATZ or Joytech one with a 'turbo' button that came free with a bundle or magazine subscription. Maybe an official one that works except the top of the analog stick tends to slip around forcing a few errors per match or the shoulder button is occasionally wedged in by the dried remains of a semi digested mars bar, courtesy of a small child. The joypad that no one would choose if they had a choice but beggars can't be choosers. If you find that you are player 4 then clearly you are not in good company. Player 4 is the position that you used to reserve for younger siblings or the smelly kid from downt' road when you were younger, and drug dealers when you were older. Player 4's screen is also in an akward position. Negative gaming chi for P4. However, as everyone assumes that player 4 will not do well no one bothers to watch your screen. Use this to your advantage by spawn camping, backstabbing and sniping. It takes a dark character to flourish as player 4 but it is not impossible.

So as you can see as the newcomer in the house playing on my console regardless of the fact that it is your game and your memory card the rules which I have just written would seem to lean on the side that I should be Player 1 without explicitly saying so Robisgay!


  1. Anonymous15:12

    Punch me in the throat if I'm wrong, but isn't that car door thing from A Bronx Tale? I may not know games but I know movies....

  2. Noooooooooooooo! Seriously? Damn


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