Video Game Relationships

February 2nd, 2011 -

Recently I’ve been going through situations that have driven me to recollect my past. Only a select few know of the pain behind my life, and from thinking about that pain, I think of what comforted me. You know, it typically wasn’t people. There were a few instances, and some friends are no doubt better than others, but there’s been one friend that has never judged me and has helped in every time of need.

(Music from this post has been deleted by the server transfer… my apologies)

I think it’s pretty obvious that this relationship I’m referring to is with my video games (this is a video game blog, after all). It started years ago as forbidden love. I was four, and my older brother had an NES. I wasn’t allowed to play it because … well, I don’t really recall, to be honest. Everyone probably assumed I’d break it, or something. In any case, my brother had school, my dad worked, and my mom… liked to do things that involved her not knowing what I was up to. So, this naturally left me time to go play video games, right? Yeah, I thought so.

Remember Ikari Warriors?

I have so many fond memories of that time, playing games with the suspense of getting caught. One time, I was totally freaked out because someone was breaking in through the window of the room I was playing in! Four years old and you see a hand come through the blinds? Yeah, not okay. Turned out to be my brother. I never got in trouble for playing games, probably because no one ever knew (I bolted when I saw the hand) – that, or they just thought it was endearing. Beats me. But if you’ve ever wondered where my love for Mega Man comes from, it stems from this time in my life. It was the first game that had a boss I could beat (by myself, at least). The accomplishment I felt from this has stood the test of time in my life of video games – I’m not sure I’ve ever recreated a reaction like that since. Young lovers, me and the NES.

Time went on, and the systems changed (as did I) – our love only grew. I got my Playstation in 4th grade, and it served me well. We spent hours together, some days I never left it for more than an hour unattended. Some games even warranted me not sleeping… And this is when games really started being there for me. While it wasn’t the worst events ever, I lost my older brother (he didn’t die, he just moved across the country) and school had started to really drag down my morale. While I had friends, I’ve never been the type to go on about things (weird that I write for a blog in that aspect, actually) that bugged me. Plus, friends can’t be with you all the time – they have lives too. But video games? Oh yes, they were still able to make me smile, laugh, and take me away from the pain.

Ahhh, the original Red Faction.

7th grade: I got the PS2. Fitting, as my grades had dropped staggeringly. I went from straight A’s to straight C’s. My teachers hated me, I couldn’t seem to fit into anyone’s expectations, and I was seemingly a failure to everyone. You know who accepted me? Who was glad to see me? My video games. They loved the attention I gave them. At this time, we were married in a figurative sense. Inseparable. It was clear to me that I couldn’t live my life without them, no matter how hard I tried. We were the best of friends, and we loved each other.

Persona 3 was something I could relate to…

11th grade: I lose everyone I know as friends. I’m alone for the rest of my time at high school and rely solely on the companionship of my games. I actually contemplate suicide more seriously than I ever have due to the ostracizing by my peers. Why did it get so bad? Well, at this point in time, my PS2 was actually dying. Crippled, hit with disease. While it isn’t quite the same, it’s astonishingly similar for me – imagine that one of your parents was put into the hospital because of a heart attack and there was nothing you could do, and there was no sign of them getting better. Yeah, that’s what it did to me.

Shortly after surviving graduation, I went ahead and bought myself a PS3. The time had come, and I needed one. I guess a better analogy for the previous section is if you had loved someone, married them, went to them when all else was lost, and then they died. The beauty of that person being a video games? They’re almost never gone forever. My PS3 being fully backwards compatible, I was able to relive all my favorite moments from the PS1 and PS2, which were years of sentimental moments. Following that was plenty of hurt that I’d rather not go into, as what you’ve read already is more than I am comfortable going on about.

A love that isn’t supposed to exist.

I love my video games with all my heart, as weird as that may sound to most people. And you know, I don’t expect others to understand. I don’t ask that others feel what I felt… what I went through. In fact, I’d rather they never have to experience what I did. It’s a story filled with sadness, hurt, and pain… but ultimately ends with someone (something) always being there to comfort you. While video games can’t replace a girl friend (well… maybe Love Plus for the DS), a wife (a guy actually married the aforementioned game…), or family… They’ve done a pretty damn good job of consoling me when no one else could. As sad as it sounds, I don’t imagine I could live the rest of my life without them. Sure, I suppose I could if I needed to, but I’d be much less of a person
unless someone was actually able to fill that void.

Addicted to games? Maybe. In love with them? Definitely. We’ve reached a level of companionship I’ve always dreamed of with my real friends, but have come to realize that dream is impossible to reach with actual people. So here I am, content with my dear electronics. Hello, I’ve missed you.

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