Hello! My name is Norman, I'm a middle-aged brit from the North-East of England. I fix bicycles for a living, but it's a pretty poor living these days, so I've been retraining as an electrician.
My gaming history started when I fucked up my computer course at school because I spent too much time playing space invaders on the Commodore PET or whatever it was that preceded the PET, they had one of each.
A year or two later, I bought a used Sinclair Spectrum 48k, and thus did I become a gamer nerd. I used to read all of the Spectrum and computer gaming monthlies like it was some kind of religion, my favourite games from then were Knight Lore, Dragon torc of Avalon, some weird little game with a column of dalek-like robots rolling along a road to destroy some aliens (roadside encounter comes to mind as the title, but I'm sure that's wrong) and Dun Darach.
The next computer I got was an Atari ST, but I wasn't really into the available games for that, & just used it for music, thus a break from gaming for a good few years 'till I got a used 20mhz 486 PC which had "Doom" and "Doom 2" installed. Man, did I ever fall for them. I even bought this disc with 1000 doom levels on it, and PLAYED EVERY ONE. I still get doom out occasionally, and I still dig it loads.
Next, I got a P266 win 95 box, which allowed me to get "Quake" and the first "Tomb Raider", both of which I loved, got into a serious FPS addiction which persists to this day.
I'm currently at the point where my home M$ box is not able to run more recent games which on the one hand is frustrating, as I fancy both GTA4 and Bioshock, on the other hand, I've been a bit dissapointed a couple of times - I got both "Quake 4" and "Tomb Raider:Legend" both of which I thought blew goats - too in hock to the (lame) storylines, no fun exploring the locales. Also, I don't see a lot I fancy on the shelves at the moment. It all seems a bit uninspired to me. Thus, a bit of a disconnect from gaming at the moment.
Favourite games have been: Hexen 2 & "Portal of Praevus" expansion, The 2 official expansions for "Quake" 1, GTA Vice City, Unreal 2, Tomb Raider 1.
I like the sense of having access to a whole little world behind the computer screen, anything that does that, I like.
I got quite heavily into playing UT2004 online, but got a bit bored.
― The Plastic Fork (Pashmina), Monday, 29 September 2008 14:47 (fourteen years ago) link
Oh yeah, I do like this thing you find very occasionally, some unknown/neglected, half-assed broken little thing that you pick up for 4.99 in the sale bin and it turns out to have some weird unique kind of atmosphere that really hooks you into its world. Strongest example would be "Arx Fatalis", which is probably my favourite game ever. Def could have done with a bit more of that. Also, though to a much lesser extent "Tomb Raider:Angel of Darkness", though a big part of the fun w/that title was finding all the half finished bits they didn't remove from the released game.
― The Plastic Fork (Pashmina), Monday, 29 September 2008 14:59 (fourteen years ago) link
Pashmina, did you ever play I Have No Mouth But I Must Scream, or Sanitarium? Both are sorta obscure and have really freaky, unique atmospheres.
― Mordy, Monday, 29 September 2008 15:15 (fourteen years ago) link
Hi dere. I'm Gerry, I'm 37 and I'm a bored civil servant who has worked in electronic publishing in one form or another for about 15 years.
I can't remember the exact chronology of some of this but roughly speaking: My gaming life started around 1978 with a Binatone plug-into your TV pong type game (tennis/football/squash/light-gun). I played coin-op games in the local community centre on my way home from school in the late 70s/early 80s - Space Invaders, Galaxian, Galaga, Pac Man, that Kung-Fu/Karate thing that had two joysticks and you pushed them both up to somersault...I then got an Atari 2600 and remember loving a weird maze/shooter called Tutankham when I was about 12 but I never owned that many games for it.Once I hit my teens I started going to the local pool hall which was awesome. 25 pool tables, 4 snooker tables, 45s jukebox and a HUGE wall lined with coin-op games. My regular games were Centipede, Ghosts & Goblins, Double Dragon, Commando, SiniStar, RoboTron, Tron, Defender, Mr Do and lots more. The one game that I absolutely excelled at was a little known title called Shaolin's Road which I eventually got so good at that I couldn't lose. They had it in the shop next to my high school and 10p would last me an entire lunch hour before I would hand it over to someone who was skipping classes.At home I've owned at one time or another - Atari ST, Amiga 600, Sega Megadrive (Genesis), SNES, Gameboy, PS1, PS2, DS, and I've owned PCs since about 1992.Games I have loved in various formats and in no particular order: Sonic the Hedgehog, Speedball II, Sensible Soccer, Doom and all its versions, Quake, Half Life I & II, Tomb Raider (pretty much all of them despite diminishing returns), PGA Tour Golf, Gran Turismo, GTA (I II III VC & SA - still not played IV), Need for Speed series, Oddworld, Far Cry.
I was a bit late to online play but some time around 2001 I became absolutely hooked on Counterstrike and have played it ever since. I ended up in a CS clan that played in the Enemy Down premier league and went so far as to go to a huge multiplay lan event. In recent years I mostly play public servers as the clan commitment was taking too much of my time. I've messed about with other online shooters but I really can't see past the simplicity of CS.
There are huge chunks of gaming history that have pretty much passed me by. I never got into any of the FF games, ignored Zelda, was put off by anything turn based that wasn't chess, only ever played about 3 survival horrors, got bored with the first Monkey Island game and never finished it etc etc so I'm looking forward to attempting some new genres in this club.
Hopefully being a lifelong gamer but a Fallout noob will bring an interesting perspective. I downloaded it the other day, set up a character, killed a couple of rats then was killed by three bears. I'm sure a child would have done better on a first go :)
― aye it's me (onimo), Monday, 29 September 2008 15:23 (fourteen years ago) link
I'm Andy, a philosophy professor in his mid thirties. I'm presently working in Kansas, but I've lived in seven other US states (both coasts, Texas, and so on) and in France (where I will be living again for a year beginning next summer). I've been gaming regularly since I was eight, on a 2600 and on a Kaypro my dad brought home, on which I learned how to program by reading BASIC games and learning how to edit them to be more fun. I played lots on my friends' TI, 5200, and Intellivision as well, then graduated to my own Colecovision (with the fabulously idiosyncratic baseball joystick). I got an NES as soon as it came out---winning Rygar on a rental was one of the highlights of that year---then an SNES and later an N64 and a Gameboy Advance. But I've never thought of myself as a Nintendo guy, just someone who wants the best games, and Nintendo was the only choice during those years. I mostly played platformers (SMB, Contra, etc.) and Nintendo-style RPGs. I also got into sports games in high school, firstly just Earl Weaver Baseball, and flight simulators (Chuck Yeager). By then I was playing on PC. I played Civ I in college like mad, and then Civ 2, and thought of myself as a strategy gamer for a while, though really Civ was the only strategy game I ever got heavily into (this continued well into graduate school). I also was heavily into MUD in college. I got married in the late 90s and with my wife I've played a lot more RPGs since then, because we can play/enjoy the narrative together. I got the console itch around 2000, first getting a Dreamcast (Jet Grind Radio and Soul Calibur were my tops) and then a first-gen Xbox (for sports games and KOTOR). My brother bought me a 360 last year (!) so now I'm gaming on that, plus I'm a Mac guy now and so no more PC gaming for me.
My RPG history has mostly been medieval-themed games like Might and Magic (I've played all but the last one) but KOTOR was great. I've never played the classic sci-fi RPGs like Planescape:Torment or Fallout, so I'm hoping to get into this one.
― Peter Cetera (Euler), Monday, 29 September 2008 15:46 (fourteen years ago) link
I'm Z(ach) S, 25, finishing up a master's degree in environmental policy at Cornell University this year.
My first experience with games that I can remember is watching my sister's friend's older brother play Super Mario Bros. 2, four times in a row, once with each character. My first system was a NES with Super Mario Bros/Duckhunt. Soon thereafter, I did the Nintendo Power deal where you get a subscription, Dragon Warrior I, and a strategy guide for $15, and proceeded to play through DW about a dozen or so times in a row. Although I've owned a number of systems (NES>SNES>Playstation>Dreamcast>N64>Wii, in the order I purchased them), I've never really owned too many games. I tend to get obsessed with a choice few. Marble Madness, the original Ninja Gaiden, Street Fighter II Turbo, Super R-Type. Especially Marble Madness. I have a sort of reputation with Marble Madness, and when new people come over to my house I'm often forced into busting out the NES and wailing on it (not that I mind that much, I suppose).
Ever since I first started seeing my girlfriend, over 4 years ago now, my gaming time has been on a steep decline. Now, with grad school work and a thesis hanging over my head, I honestly don't have that much spare time, and those few hours usually go to my girlfriend. She's not the kind of person who will watch me play videogames. Maybe for 20 minutes or so, until I start getting pressured into going outside or something. This is especially true with RPGs, so I'm really hoping I can keep up with Fallout.
― Z S, Monday, 29 September 2008 17:15 (fourteen years ago) link
I'm Lee, have a BA and Master's in worthlessness (English and TV studies), Bay Area-living d00d working nominally as a tech writer but really learning on-the-job how to be a coder. Also, volunteering for a certain hopechange candidate and learning even more on-the-job how to program in PHP. Combining day job, vol job, and possibly night classes, and until recently console inertia, I have very little time for gaming/getting in shape thru Wii Fit, which I got only a few weeks ago.
Gaming history-wise, remember getting some lame Atari before getting an NES, which my older cousin ended up playing the most because I kind of sucked. RPG that came with the system -- Dragon Quest something? -- scared the hell out of me. Zomg witchcraft!! I also didn't know how to play it. Then my cousin got an SNES, which was when I started coming into my own -- beat SMW with all 96 stars, learned to pwn in SFII Turbo with Chun Li despite never mastering two-in-one combos or in fact any combos beyond jumping RK+crouching RK. PS1 had a lot of lols with RE, and a lot of love for MGS, and finally figured out how to play RPGs. Meanwhile in N64 era, Goldeneye and the THQ wrestling games became my addictions. GE was the only FPS I could ever play -- everything else gave me motion sickness. Matter of fact, I once was part of a study at school that involved playing some Half Life mod for an hour for $10; I could only do it for 30 minutes before I wanted to puke. At least they gave me $5.
Never did much PC gaming, War/Starcraft were really the extent of that. I have never played/heard of Fallout before. I like reality tv and am a Virgo, what's your sign baby?
― Leee, Tuesday, 30 September 2008 04:33 (fourteen years ago) link
I'm John, own a guitar store, 35, double major in English/Philosophy, mostly due to becoming disenchanted with lit crit and obsessed with formal logic during my college years. Cut my gaming teeth at a very young child with my cousins pachinko and pong games and a life on the road with my touring parents playing pinball and space invaders in truck stops across the country. Still remember the first moment playing pacman on my friends 2600 where i realized that i could make things happen on the TV. Held the high score at the local movie theater on Qbert, Wizard of Wor, and Battlefield. Ended up with a commodore 64, and started with the agony of loading shitty "3d" pacman imitations on the tape drive for 20 minutes, then cartridge games, then the early disk based Electronics Arts titles (monster madness?, temple of apshii?, the names escape me.) As time went on, infocom text adventures, and then impossible mission, the aliens game, that flying carpet deal, and beachhead, each of which, in turn, seemed to be the pinnacle of possibility for home gaming. Got an apple IIC that came with Ultima IV, was once again convinced that the future was now. oops.
So now have a nintendo 64, a playstation, a sega genesis, an Xbox, a playstation 2, a wii, a mac (;_; for gaming), and a Xbox 360. I am a terrible finisher of games, i tend to be easily distracted and not that committed beyond a certain point. Between the PS/Xbox/360/Wii, I think I'm sitting at a library of about 400 games. many of which are terrible.
I tend to love things that are their own accomplishment free reward (the burnout series, dumb wii games), narratively anti-hero driven (Parasite Eve, Bioshock, the good moments in Max Payne and the GTA series, Condemned, Halflife kind of, Fallout 2), and video game rejectionary (Katamari, Oddworld, Psychonauts).
Part of the reason that this whole thing excites me is that I am fascinated with the potential of video games as a narrative device, and the interesting aspects of how the reader response version of lit crit can be applied to the direct involvement of the viewer in that narrative. The odd side-effect of this is that i am completely uninterested in games that define their narrative from online interaction (sorry WOW dudes), because I think that leaving the content/storyline of a game up to the players is the game designers easy way out.
Also, I like to kill things and blow stuff up.
― just makes my strat rage, march and burn the face of the MAN. (John Justen), Tuesday, 30 September 2008 06:08 (fourteen years ago) link
i'm jean baptiste (make that jb or john or whatever), recently turned 23, student, have a BA in History and English, currently in a lol master in the science of management (whatever that is). I live in Paris and am currently doing a crappy internship.
My gaming history doesnt amount to much compared to those upthread. Started playing games when my parents got a mac back in 1995 or something. Played hours and hours of sim city. Longed for a game boy during all my childhood without ever having one. Loved the mario games. Soon after the mac we got a pc, all 166mhz of it. I remember playing wolfenstein 3D a lot, some Doom and Quake too, as well as Need for speed, Fifa 98, space invaders or other relatively unknown games I guess( Kalisto's Fury of the Furies; a Heart of Darkness game maybe?).
When I came back to France, I started playing Half Life. I never actually finished the single player mode (got stuck at one point where there is a hydra-like beast and kinda stopped there) but I played CS quite a lot. By quite a lot I mean I spent lots of weekends in front of the computer, at my house or at a friends if we set up a lan. I did not join any clan but that didnt stop me from playing a shitload. I actually ditched school on one or two occasions just to go play CS.
The other game I spent far too much time on is Diablo 2. I'd bought it the day it came out cause I had enjoyed the first one. Started out with a paladin and really didnt get into it. Two years later or some such, I saw my brother playing D2 online and that got me back into it. So I did too and that was the beginning of a year and a half of loads of Diablo. I levelled up countless chars (though none to lvl 99, my only regret). The weird thing was that after about 10 months I didnt really play anymore. I'd just log on, give items to friends who started playing and spend hours trading items. Which means that about 6 years after the fact I can still remember the trade value of a number of items.
Since I finished high school I havent played much. I bought a DS about 3 yrs back and have enjoyed myself quite a bit with it. I also really love watching other people play. I also just realised that I'm off to a very bad start since I wont be at home till sunday so wont really be able to play till then. The reason why I joined this is cause it sounds more fun to play a game and be able to speak about it with other people who are playing it at the same time.
― Jibe, Tuesday, 30 September 2008 12:34 (fourteen years ago) link
I'm Will, and I'm 24. I work for some mostly-anonymous white label web 2.0 company nowadays, and play a bunch of games (Although less than I want, generally).
I started when I was really young, probably three or four years old, when my dad got an Atari 2600, Mario Bros, Ms. Pac-Man, and Donkey Kong. I was hooked, even though I'd learn long after that they were pretty awful ports. We also got an Atari ST dekstop computer, which had a few games on it-- most notably, Asteroids, Operation Neptune, Hostage, Bubble Ghost...
Much to my chagrin, I had nothing but an Atari until the mid 1990's, when I was spending all of my time reading magazines about N64 and Playstation. I was too young to work, though, and my parents couldn't afford one of those-- so, when my mom's boss got her kids an N64, she sold her kid's SNES to my mom, who gave it to me. Which was totally awesome. I'm glad I had an SNES and not an N64.
When I was 12 or 13, I took a flyer-delivering job and bought a PS1. I moved and no longer had a job, and wouldn't have another for ages, so I mostly rented and borrowed games for that system. That was '98. In '03 or '04 I had a new job and bought a PS2. I now have a 360 as well.
My best memories of gaming are going to my friend's house and playing his NES. We struggled through SMB3, Battletoads, Rockin' Kats... my other big memories were playing through a few RPGs by myself on the SNES and PS1 (Chrono Trigger and early FFVII, namely).
Nowadays I play 360, and a lot of Football Manager. I love games that are really "cult"y. They intrigue me, even if I'm on the outside (for example I'm really interested in playing Fire Pro, even though I don't like wrestling). In my 360 now: NHL 09.
― THERE IS NO VULCAN DEATH GRIP (Will M.), Tuesday, 30 September 2008 14:34 (fourteen years ago) link
john do u even have a passport tho
― cozwn, Sunday, 27 December 2009 19:39 (thirteen years ago) link
Hello, I'm Michael. I work as an editor for an art school in San Francisco, and live in Oakland. I used to work in a bunch of record stores, but now I can afford to buy records. I have left the country once in my entire life -- the year I studied abroad in college. I can't find my passport. (Well, okay, I went to Tijuana a few times when I lived in San Diego...)
When I was a little kid my dad randomly bought me a second-gen video game console at an auction. It might have been a Coleco Adam, or a Texas Instruments TI-99/4A, or maybe something else. I'm not sure. What I remember for sure was that I had Buck Rogers: Planet of Zoom and was obsessed with it for awhile. Other than that, there was the arcade. I didn't have an Atari or know anyone who had one. In kindergarten or first grade I met a kid who had a ColecoVision, and I desperately wished I could be friends with him so I could play Q*Bert. But we were not that tight.
Anyway, a few years later my dad had a good poker night, so he bought me the "Intendo" that I'd been wanting. He also got me some games, seemingly at random. I can't even remember what they were. No one had ever heard of them. I played them to death. Anyway, my I had my Nintendo in the garage and also had a pool table and a basketball hoop and a pool, so it was kind of a big deal. Mostly we just played Nintendo though.
Later I got a SNES. One of my neighbors had a Genesis, and he let us come over to play Mortal Kombat but his brother was a dick. Another friend claimed to have a Neo Geo but he'd never let us see it.
This was around the time I stopped going to the arcade, and also around when I got my first home computer. I used it to set up a BBS, and I was a SysOp at 13, with a lot of awesome BBS games like TradeWars and Legend of the Red Dragon and shit like that. This was also when I first started playing shit like Wolfenstein and Doom.
In high school I discovered punk rock, literature, and girls, and basically didn't play video games at all after that except Tetris and Minesweeper until after college, Then I moved in with a guy who had a PS2, and later I got my own PS2, and later I got a 360, and now I have a PS3, and we are up to date. I have a PC but it is not suitable for video gaming. I like Flash games. The end.
― real bears playing hockey (polyphonic), Sunday, 27 December 2009 20:45 (thirteen years ago) link
Oh hey, this isn't in ILG!
― real bears playing hockey (polyphonic), Sunday, 27 December 2009 20:50 (thirteen years ago) link
― thomp, Sunday, 27 December 2009 21:07 (thirteen years ago) link
i have a passport! why?
― lazy cold meat and chocolate seasonal mentality (forksclovetofu), Tuesday, 29 December 2009 19:34 (thirteen years ago) link
i totally missed this thread.
― F-Unit (Ste), Tuesday, 14 September 2010 15:46 (twelve years ago) link
i miss this board.sigh
― Gulab jamun (Gulab Jamun) into the syrup please. (forksclovetofu), Tuesday, 14 September 2010 17:03 (twelve years ago) link
i still miss this board
― think “Gypsy-Pixie” and misspelled. (We are a white family.) (forksclovetofu), Thursday, 5 August 2021 19:42 (one year ago) link