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“I’m Not A Gamer.” Or Are You?
Nintendo’s “I’m not a gamer, i’m a _____.” ads-http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LLFoNe9iD-I and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i6XeECPKnJM -for the 3DS XL have gotten some attention. And by “attention” I mean complaining, whining, and making negative presumptions based on nothing that too many gamers do rather then being smart about it (see: retake Mass Effect movement).
I can’t say I don’t understand where they’re coming from, but the entire concept of trying to sell games to people who already play games is redundant because they are already going to play the games. That’s how marketing works.
Still, it seems like we’re being to quick to judge, let’s try looking at this in a positive light shall we?
What if you saw an ad of someone playing Skyrim and they said “I’m not a gamer, I’m the Dovakin.”? Or playing Zelda and said “I’m not a gamer, I’m the hero of time.”? Well, that actually feels like a good advertisement, after all what makes games most appealing is the fantasy and imagenation of them; you get to explore, interact, and have an impact on fantasy worlds or science fiction universes that could only otherwise be seen in books and movies.
Of course the negative perception of this is the most common; many gamers think this creating a bad stigma of being called a gamer. I don’t think so, I think this is RESPONDING to it. Due to the sucess of the Wii, the availability of iPhone game apps, and the popularity of social networking games, more people are playing video games then ever, so naturally mainstream culture focused it’s eyes on what “gamers” were and this is what they saw
the so called hardcore gamers- i use the term “gamer” loosely when i’m talking about them- have made titile of “gamer” synamous with agressive, offensive, over-compensating-sometimes even homophobic, racist and misognist-beta-male bullies who’s mantra is “RAWR! I’M AM THE ONLY REAL TYPE OF GAMER THERE IS! AND IF YOU DON’T PLAY THE SAME GAMES AS ME, THEN YOUR NOT!!!”
They didn’t take “gamer” and warp into something stupid and evil, we LET them. We let insecure 12 year olds run free on Xbox live to spout homophobic slurs at good meaning players who have did nothing wrong, and we let the Modern Warfare and Battlefield players turn FPS online multiplayer into the face of gaming as we know it. Who in their right mind would want to be associated with that? I sure don’t.
We have our bad apples, whole trees of them, but I know gamers are a diverse and wonderful group; the retro gamers, the modders, the Minecraft players, the MMO and RPG players, the Indie gamers and so on. And while the competitive and hardcore players are a minority, from the outside looking in, the fact they repeat “hardcore gamin is the only real gaming” loud enough and long enough makes it difficult to see gaming as a whole as anything other then all about winning and realistic graphics, rather then creativity, storytelling, interactivity, and having fun like it actually is.
I don’t know which route these ads are taking, and while I do think they are in bad taste, I think whichever one they’re taking is the sensible thing for Nintendo to do.
After all, if weren’t for them
we wouldn’t be here talking about this right now.