Bah Humbug!

For some reason, I am uninterested in writing about games these days. Maybe I finally reached the age where I grew up and gaming doesnt mean as much to me as it did in the earlier days. But that isnt true. I play two games almost everyday World of Warcraft and Out of the Park Baseball. My daily routine still includes visiting various game sites every now and then, but fewer are the commercial sites and more are messageboards.

So what happened?

Five or six years ago I was deep into the scene. I had stacks upon stacks of all sorts of PC and console games. I couldnt get into enough beta tests, even braved a few alpha tests, wrote reviews, and even helped edit a site. Now that I am earning much more money than I did back then, I spend much less on new games of any kind. I have the same amount of time available. I just spend it on two games instead of ten at a time.

My sudden lack of interest in computer gaming mirrors my experience running track for many years. I ran competitive track (the 400 and below in high school, then the 800 in college) from middle school until my third year in college. I used to love racing, especially the relays, but gradually over time I just began to hate it. It got to the point that while I was in the US Marine Corps, the only time I would run was in formation or during our three-mile physical fitness test. The joy was gone.

So I channeled my energy into racing bicycles and still enjoy a good ride every now and then to this day. But I never run or jog for any reason. I feel this same malaise creeping over me when it comes to gaming. Everything being made seems the same, just on a different platform or with prettier pictures. And the coverage of these games has gone from interesting in the earlier days to downright boring and uninteresting today. The two bright spots in game related writing Ive seen in the past three years is the Shoot Club work done by Tom Chick and the rise of the blog.

Maybe I am being nostalgic, but there was a time when there were many outlets for intelligent gaming discussion. I think my interest in gaming is directly correlated with the death of independent non-commercial gaming sites. And the death of usenet as a relevant discussion forum, particularly about sports games.

And inversely correlated with the invasion of the gaming journalist. The more of these folks that emerge from the woodworks claiming this moniker, the less interested I get in this industry. Where were all of these journalists when EA was marching through sports gaming and leaving a conquered wasteland in its wake? Sending email interviews to EA PR people? They were up in arms for sure, but the intelligent discussion about these events was found on blogs and in mainstream business publications.

So Ill just play in my OOTP leagues, fire up WoW and shoot a few things, and sip my glass of Jameson 12-year old Irish whiskey (excellent, smooth whiskey that is very affordable). Every now and then interesting things occur that require comment, but Ive decided to be a part of the gaming masses and jot down a few thoughts every now and then on this blog. No more reviews, no more beta tests, Im done.

Although I do find the text gaming genre pretty interesting these days, so I think Ill stick to that commentary in the future.


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