Category Archives: Non Gamers

Hey, You! Play Nice

Gamers need to get along with each other and everyone else. I know I seem idealistic—heck, the phrase “video game idealist” led one person to my blog—but it’s necessary.

We can start by being polite to non gamers who show an interest in playing video games. Now, I don’t want to trample on people’s freedom of speech; it can be fun to joke around when you’re playing. However, we need to treat new gamers with basic decency so they can play in a positive environment.

This positive environment will do wonders for both new and non gamers. It might encourage them to feel like they belong among a gaming community. The cynical non gamers might start treating this past time with respect.

And we should encourage non gamers and new gamers to play video games. If we don’t share this pastime with them, video games might die out or only use the same ideas from the past. Worse, only a privileged few might indulge in video games. That’s tragic. It would be like not sharing your gifts with as many people as possible.

How does this generation of gamers want others to remember them? We need to be more inclusive and tolerant towards everyone interested in this hobby. That includes women who, according to the Entertainment Software Association, make up to 47% of gamers. A new generation of gamers, of all genders, races and so on will see games differently than those who played in the past. We have to respect their new opinions and play style.

You hear people talk about serious issues like the national debt and climate change and the next generation’s burdens. Those are important topics that we need resolve. But I wonder if all gamers can spare a minute to consider their own behaviour and their legacy.


Filed under Non Gamers

5 Bad Reasons not to Play Video Games

Lots of folks might like or even love video games. However, they won’t admit it. They will always make up excuses not to play video games.

1. “They’re really for kids.”

Stats prove you wrong. Did you know the average video game player is 30 years old?

Let’s also look at stories in games. The complex story of a game like, say, Mass Effect 2 might be lost on a child. Some themes in games might be too mature for kids as well.

2. “They’re only for geeks.”

Don’t worry about what other people say about your hobbies. Be authentic. People will appreciate and maybe even love you for that.

Don’t let other people label you into a corner because you have a hobby they don’t understand. You’re a complex human being with diverse interests and never just a “geek”.

3. “They’re all about the graphics now. Also, I miss old school games.”

You’re wrong. Games like Dwarf Fortress 2 and Minecraft are popular and have minimalistic “graphics.” Or try an old school text-based game and fill in the graphics with your imagination.

Of course, if you miss older games, you can always download them, play remakes or try games inspired by the classics.

4. “They’re too expensive.”

Some people argue video games are cheaper than ever. Did you know that?

5. “I don’t have the time to play them.”

I can relate to this comment. I have precious little time to play video games, so I make time for them. I make time because video games are one of the most relaxing hobbies I have. If I didn’t have hobbies that helped me relax, I would go crazy.

You may not have much time to pursue hobbies, and I get that,  but I’m sure you need time to unwind. Video games could also help you relax. So I humbly suggest you try playing them.

Stop making up excuses and give video games a try. Believe me, there’s nothing to be ashamed of, and you will find gamers are just like you!

You’ll also like my post 3 Bad Reasons not to Play Video Games.


Filed under Non Gamers

Join the Video Game Defense Force

I want you for the video game defense force!

If you won’t join me, I’ll take up my sword and shield to defend video games myself. You might ask, “Why do you need to defend them?” Mistaken myths and assumptions about video games abound, and it’s up to the people who love this fun hobby to do something.

We all know what assumptions do to you and me; imagine the harm they do to games. How many times have you heard that games are just for kids? Yet the average game player is 30 years old. How many times have people dismissed games as shiny toys for teen boys? Yet we know that’s silly: women make up a large percentage of gaming enthusiasts. How many more times will others accuse gamers of being socially awkward? But it’s a hobby that fits into a balanced lifestyle, just like your cereal is part of a balanced breakfast.

If Aristotle were here, maybe he would tell us to aim for that golden mean in between too little gaming and too much. Many of us can reach this golden mean. So let’s dispel the myth that all gamers have no lives outside their hobby. That’s one simple thing we can all do to defend games from silly assumptions.

We will also need to communicate better with the public. They might hold on to silly assumptions as a weak crutch in their arguments. We need to tell them about their mistaken views.

Let’s start by addressing video game violence. Let’s tell concerned people about game ratings. Let’s listen to their concerns and show them what studies have to say. Let’s speak honestly about study findings and try to understand each other. Then we need to show them all the wonderful genres of video games, including the non-violent kinds. Chances are they will find a genre of video game that appeals to them. And when more people play and love games, we might have to defend them less.

But why should you bother to defend video games? They are worth defending because they fill people’s lives with joy. They transport you to distant worlds and take you on adventures to places that defy imagination. It’s the interactivity that sets games makes games both fun and unique.

Games also need a robust defense because they are so important in our world. They relieve tension, allow for creativity, and can help people learn languages. I’m talking about programming languages or perhaps playing games that teach one to speak a new language. Yes, games are so important in people’s lives that you can’t just take them away.

I wonder what our lives would be like without games.Think about the millions of people who work to make them for us.

Of course there’s nothing wrong with disliking video games, but there’s no need to spread silly assumptions and outright lies. So, since games are so important, we need to defend them. If we don’t defend video games, who will?


Filed under Non Gamers

Shocking Video Game Nightmare

I stumbled outside one morning, nearly tumbled down the stairs, and saw something unexpected. Everyone in the world, like your grandma, your neighbour and astronauts in space, played video games. They played on the go, at home, and while they ate. There was no more work; work became play.

At first, I thought I was still dreaming. After all, it felt like cement blocks weighed down my eye lids with 100 pounds of pressure, and this was a fantastical world. Then, I smelled the pungent aroma of coffee, it woke up my nostrils, and I downed a cup of it.

I rubbed my blood-shot eyes as my brain processed a different world. Imagine, I wonder if you can, no more “noobs,” no taunts, no banned or censored games and no violence.

Developers and gamers hold hands as they sing in the street. Piracy and DRM are a thing of the past. Everything smells like yellow roses in full bloom on a blue sky Sunday afternoon.

But wait! Scratch this rosy surface and a foul stench now pervades the air.

A billboard sized screen turns on behind me and a big brother-like tyrant speaks commands to his slaves. I look closer to see the tyrant is Doctor Wallace Breen from Half Life 2, and he’s forcing everyone to play video games. I always thought it would be good if more people tried video games, but freedom is something to cherish. Forcing people to have a hobby is wrong.

Get me out! This is a nightmare. I can handle all the people who bash video games. I can handle it if some people don’t play video games. There is no place like home. There is no place like home. Flaws and all.


Filed under Non Gamers

Why Play Single Player Video Games?

single player video gamesPlaying video games by yourself may sound anti-social. Maybe you think I’m a crazy cat person for even suggesting such an idea. Well, think again.

Here are five reasons why you might want to play games by yourself.

No Anonymous Teenagers

1. You prefer to go out with friends and play your games alone. When you play by yourself, you can side step those angry Xbox Live gamers. I mean, who wants to hear a nine-year old scream like a banshee into a microphone? Well, not me. I don’t know about you.

The Party (of One) Never Ends

2. You can keep playing a single player game even if PSN or Xbox Live crash. There’s no need to sit around and twiddle thumbs. You can also play if you’re friends aren’t online, of if their internet is down. And there are plenty of excellent single player games to keep you busy.

No Friendly Uproar

3. You might be able to quit a single player game without causing an upset. However, if you leave an online multiplayer match early, you’ll let down your team. I guess your team would give you another shot, but first they’d stab you in the back. You don’t always get to choose your team mates.

A Story Just for Me

4. I can get lost in the forests of a story when I play by myself. My friends, sitting on the couch, might die of boredom if they had to watch me move like a snail through a game’s nooks and crannies. My friends might want to jump into the action and skim the story.

The Allure of Shiny Things

5. Sometimes you just want to sit back, relax and unwind with a good game after a hard day. Then you can finish pointless tasks in the game that might bore friends. You can, for instance, get all the trophies or achievements by yourself. Now, I don’t mean those trophies where you have to kill one million bad guys or reach a certain rank online. Who has time for those things?

Of course, there are innumerable great reasons to play with others. There will be memorable moments to share with friends, you might love to compete against others and, most of all, you love to beat them.

But you’ve got to admit that playing games alone is sometimes fun. I know you do it. We all do it, and none of us are crazy cat people.


Filed under Non Gamers

3 Bad Reasons not to Play Video Games

Reasons to play video gamesSome people snub their noses at video games. They should instead play them with a warm heart and open mind. They might find a new hobby. Or, at least, they’d understand this hobby and why others love it.

But foolish views about games are still out there. These views are like mental obstacles that block people from seeing and having great fun. If only people could smash through these obstacles, they’d get hours of joy from games.

So I thought of three reasons why people might avoid games.

1. “Games are too nerdy and only weird people play them.”

Well, of course, gaming could seem weird. Let’s say you seal yourself off from the world in a mine, and you’re wearing a tin foil hat on your head while you play. That’s weird. But I’m sure you wouldn’t do that. Would you?

But playing games and treating them like other hobbies is fine. Balance between video games and life is essential, and many people understand that. Don’t generalize about games or the people who play them.

2. “Shooting and violence turn me off. Also, I’m just not very good at shooting video games.”

Bloodbath is not synonymous with video game. Try a relaxing game like Endless Ocean. Go for a swim with a dolphin. Watch another person’s life unfold in The Sims. Check out the beautiful music and art in Journey. The many genre choices are amazing.

You don’t even have to be good at games to enjoy them. There are many “point and click” adventure games where you mostly tap a mouse. In these games, you can walk around and click to experience a story, hide from zombies and more. These aren’t “twitch” shooters where you drown in your own blood the second you start an online match.

And if you don’t know how to click a mouse, you’ll learn a new skill. Maybe you could go even further and learn keyboard skills from Mario Teaches Typing, if they even make that anymore. Ok, forget the Mario Teaches Typing. I’m sure remaining copies of that game are in a pit by now.

But be bold and try a video game.

3. “I’m too busy.”

Oh, you’re really busy? Then you probably need significant time to relax. I’m sure you’ve watched the same TV show and movie countless times. Why not try something different? Play a game like the Walking Dead that’s feels like a choose your own adventure book/ comic book/ TV show.

I know you will like video games. You already love the scenes and music from the movies. Guess what! Video games can have movie-like scenes and music. On top of that, you get to interact with the story and make choices.

Get out and experience games so you can understand them. And once you understand, I’m sure you’ll find they have good reason to exist. Even better, they’re a lot of fun to play.


What other bad reasons do people use to avoid playing video games? I might want to do another post on this topic. Thanks.


Filed under Non Gamers