Sunday, 24 January 2010

Digitally Cultured

It’s odd but true, the gaming culture has more of a social enjoyment than normal cultures. People would rather go online and play a game with people they really do not know and will never meet than meet up in the “real world” and socialise. Why has this happened? The fact that “real life” has so many issues that the culture that is attached to gaming is a form of escaping reality but still being a part of it by socialising with other human beings. The most commonly known game cultures seem to be the MLG, Steam, World of Warcraft and Xbox live, they all consist of online communities that all link together, clans, social teams, parties etc. I am part of the steam and Xbox live communities, steam ruled my life for a good 4 years, once work was done and I wasn’t out I was on steam playing half-life, Counter-strike, left 4 dead, team fortress, the specialist and some I don’t even remember that well. I must have a list of friends on my steam account that I never have met and will never talk to in normal situations yet as soon as they are on steam I’m talking till dusk. I recently purchased an xbox360 against my will to buy a ps3 and now am on live, I’ve noticed with live that I rarely add people I don’t know, it seems that console users are more particular on who they allow to play games with, even I have adapted to this. It’s no different from knowing randoms on pc game communities but it’s a kind of transfer to know only friends or friends of friends on the live community. Before uni a lot of my time did consist online gaming, it also becomes a small addiction I always used to think “I’ll play for half an hour” yet 3 hours later I’m still there. It seems more enjoyable to be getting those kills against controlled enemies rather than an AI or NPC enemy.

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