Tag Archives: WordPress.com

Your Blog is a Video Game

Ok not quite. But WordPress.com and video games do have one thing in common: they each have a fun awards system.

Blog awards smell a lot like game achievements. To be clear, I’m talking about the awards under your profile in the “trophy case”. WordPress automatically presents these to bloggers who, say, reach 10 likes, 10 follows, and more. Let’s not forget about the romantic “anniversary award” for your blog.

If you haven’t touched a new video game in the last 10 years or so, you should know video games have achievements too. Did you fry 100 mutant winged aliens in game? Congratulations! You have earned the fly zapper achievement.

And game achievements are a diverse bunch that depend on the whim, sometimes practically sadistic, of the game developer. I mean I can’t stand those rare achievements that ask you to beat some death-defying feat in under minute. But that’s just me.

In both video games and WordPress, unlocking these awards is fun—for some. It adds an optional set of goals as you play or write, and it feels rewarding to accomplish a goal. It makes me, and I’m sure some others, want to earn more awards and encourages me to keep going. And if the overall game is good and the achievements aren’t sadistic, then I’m going to have plenty of fun.

However, there are a couple of differences between video game achievements and blog awards. I can’t go into all the obvious aspects here. But one difference is that bloggers can create and nominate others for awards. Check out the many awards floating out there in the WordPress community for example. But, no, you can’t nominate a fellow gamer for a trophy or achievement on Xbox 360 or PS3. Gamers also cannot create their own achievements for games. This is one difference that video games could adapt for their own purposes.

Video game achievements also tend to be more prominent than WordPress awards. Usually, unless you turn this feature off, you see game achievements pop up on your TV or computer screen. Sometimes there’s even a trademark “bleep” to warn you about the award. The WordPress trophy case, though, are like buried treasure: you have to go on journey just to find them. It’s always moving to different places and now they’re under your “profile.”

Of course, there are some who despise achievements in writing and some who hate unlocking them in games, and I think these complaints are valid. Again, I’m sure there are more well-reasoned complaints from both gamers and writers than I can cover. One blogger I read said something like blog awards were immature and weren’t important. I have also seen similar sentiments expressed by gamers about achievements. I can understand that they might find these awards or achievements to be distracting. Perhaps they do believes themselves to be more mature than your average person. Perhaps they just find them distasteful. So I think these people, including some game developers, might best be served if they could turn off achievements and/or blog awards. However, I still love both game achievements and blog awards and would always have them enabled.

So both WordPress and video games share some kind of achievement system with some similarities, differences, and weaknesses. WordPress’ use of awards isn’t surprising because we know that some businesses apply game features to their products. I guess they might want to make their product fun and keep you interested in returning, like a game developer would. What elements from video games, I wonder, will influence blogging next? Will it be virtual reality? How could blogging influence the way we play the next big game, if at all?

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Thanks for Reading This

video game blog 100 hundred followsI have an urge to be creative. I get up in the morning, as the alarm buzzes in my ears, and want to do something great.

But I don’t sculpt statues and don’t lift heavy objects. Toolboxes, bricks, and easels aren’t necessary for me.

Instead, I use pens, keyboards and a mouse. Ok, for those keeping count, this is my metaphorical toolbox. This toolbox doesn’t matter too much; any pen will do. Perhaps I would care about these items if I was a keyboard designer or engineer, but I’m not. In truth, these tools are only important because they help me put words on my blog.

I chose to blog about video games for two reasons. First, I love playing them. And when I am close to them, roses fills my nostrils, all I see are hearts, and the music from Romeo and Juliet plays in the background. Sharing this love of games is the logical next step for me.

Well my goal with this blog was humble. I wanted at least one person to like and read it. I’m happy to say that my blog has long since achieved and surpassed that feat. A couple of days ago, I earned a total of 100 followers and 200 likes for good measure.

But I want more than these numbers: I want my words to captivate the eyes of non gamers. Maybe they’d learn something new about games, or maybe they’d realize gamers are like them. I’m proud to say some great writers from non game blogs have already liked my posts. Here’s to having more of them pop by!

I love words, video games, and I need to share my thoughts with you. I want to let the words flow like a river from my head, down my arms and on to the screen. From there, they trickle into the vast ocean we call the internet.

Thanks for reading.

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Filed under Video Game Blog