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What kind of Gamer are you?

March 19th, 2013 by Jonathan 3 Comments


What Type of Gamer are you?


Now when I ask that question, I don’t mean male/25-30/married or whatever. I mean, what kind of games do you primarily play? Because I find it to be an ever evolving process; one I’m currently in the middle of. I’ve recently thought that I was in a bout of something most gamers have at some point; gaming apathy. But that’s not really true. I’m playing the same amount of games as I always have, but it’s just the games have changed. And so have I.


Not that long ago, I was primarily a multiplayer gamer. Now? I can barely work up the enthusiasm to hit ‘start matchmaking.’ Time was I would have enjoyed nothing more than a Friday night in, plonked in front of the TV, beer in hand, playing whatever the newest game out was with my friends, starting around 9 and continuing, more often than not, long into the wee small hours of the morning. It was great fun, and I remember it fondly but these days it’s a Herculean effort to get a bunch of us together to play online (which nicely, makes it slightly more of an event than it would have been normally when it does happen). But this isn’t necessarily a trend that affects all gamers, perhaps just those of a certain age, because one look at the figures for Xbox Live online play shows you that a ridiculous amount of people are still happily shooting each other in the face every hour of every day. But I’m willing to bet that at least 80% of those huge figures are all 11-16 year olds.


You see recently, and maybe this is simply a getting older thing, I’ve come to expect a lot more from my time spent gaming. I want to be invested, I want to be entertained, and I want to be excited. What I don’t want is to be constantly annoyed that I’m having a bad game, and worrying about my K/D ratio (and also getting destroyed by 12 year old American kids).


^ this is how I usually feel if a multiplayer game isn’t going my way


I want to feel like I’m actually progressing rather than simply upping my kill count and you can only get that from the campaign element of gaming. A worrying trend recently in quite a few shooters has been that the multiplayer option is actually the primary choice on the menu screen; this should never be the case in my opinion. In fact, DICE’s Battlefield 3 from last year actually has disc 1 dedicated to multiplayer, while the campaign part of the game is relegated to the second disc, almost like it’s an afterthought. Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with online multiplayer (aside from the seemingly thousands of racist, misogynistic, homophobic people); it’s enormous fun and can keep you occupied for literally hours, but you’ll never have anything as memorable as moments you’ll experience in the single player.* No one ever remembers any cool kills in Call of Duty once the next game of TDM starts up.


[*Okay, not strictly true. My friends and I still reminisce about a particularly awesome flag capture in Halo 3. And that time we saw Mace Windu get eaten by the Sarlacc in Star Wars: Battlefront.]


You see, I love campaigns. I love a good story to play through. I don’t have the time or the patience anymore to sit online and shoot people in the face ad infinitum; I want to enjoy the story the game has laid out for me. I feel it’s my duty to play what the developers put time and effort into. I’m probably the easiest gamer to cater for as I love a good linear campaign to play through on my own (or with the cat sitting on my chest or in front of the TV).


^ My cat offering me tips on how to play Dead Space 3.


For all the stick Call of Duty gets, it does produce good, strong, and yes, linear campaigns that tell a good, albeit ridiculous, story. I like to feel like I’m getting somewhere in a game; that’s there’s a specific endpoint to work towards and hopefully a satisfying conclusion. It’s why I get a little bored with open ended games after a while. Yes, I can appreciate the entire world that has been created but with a game like Skyrim, there’s almost too much to do, and no restriction on when you have to do it. It’s very unfocused and again, I do not have the patience to play something like that either, or the willpower to stick to the missions the game gives you; I could very easily spend hours just riding around the mountains killing anything I come across, but I always feel like I’m wasting my time I could be spending elsewhere. In, you know, real life. And while my game experience will more or less be the same as everyone else that plays it, it’s still very enjoyable. It’s telling that the games I’ve enjoyed the most recently are linear single player campaigns, like Alan Wake, Bioshock, Dead Space 3, Tomb Raider as well as recent XBLA games Deadlight, and The Walking Dead. Linear is often used as a criticism, but if the game itself is as involving as the ones I’ve just mentioned any such criticism is null and void in my opinion.


So I ask you, would you rather play for hours and hours and hours online in Call of Duty doing nothing more than killing and getting killed, or play and become involved in a good strong 10-12 hour campaign that you’ll never forget? I know what I’d choose.


Let us know your thoughts below, @NerdFollowing on Twitter or on Facebook

When he's not trying to convert his wife to the ways of The Force, he really likes Star Wars, Jonny can more than likely be found in front of a screen. Probably watching a ridiculous amount of TV. Or playing a ridiculous amount of games. Or basically doing anything in ridiculous amounts. He really likes Star Wars. He's writing a book, or at least trying to. You can follow him on twitter if you like (@Jonny_C85) or find him on facebook. That's another screen you're likely to find him in front of. He really likes Star Wars.

  • Trev t

    I agree with you I buy games mostly on the strength of the single player game. But I do like non linear stories too. You get even more involved in games like mass effect when you think you might be the only person who is experiencing this particular story line. Games like the new tomb raider are also great but why did they go to the bother of including the multiplayer, tomb raider is a single player game, they should have forgot about the multiplayer and given us maybe another story set in the tomb raider world.

    Multiplayer games also have their place in the game world, I like a good game of FIFA or even a game of call of duty, but do we really need so many multiplayer shooters. Make something different for multiplayer and I would buy it

    • Jonny Cardwell

      Absolutely. As I said my favourites games recently have been solely single player, but of late I’ve taken to playing more and more Arcade games. That’s where the real creativity lies these days, instead of the constant stream of identikit shooters. Games like Fez that give a satisfying single player puzzle experience but in a completely different kind of game, or the punishing but addictive gameplay of Super Meat Boy.

  • Sharon Grumble

    I love this article. Myself, whilst I do enjoy multiplayer games I tend to stick to the one favourite (BF3…seriously I’m addicted…this is a cry for help.) I believe that a great game is an interactive movie with memorable characters and storytelling that fully immerses you in a different world. Be it linear like Tomb Raider or more open world like Red Dead Redemption, great games are gripping, both in play and plot. Wholeheartedly agree that multiplayer modes are being tacked onto games that should be standalone, it broke my heart when it was announced Mass Effect and Assassins’ Creed would have MP elements. I get that it is a means of making more money and enticing newer and *cough* younger players to the franchise but still…it tasks me.

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