A couple trips to Toys R Us, Mike Tyson’s Punch-out and Mario/Duckhunt in Hand I was ready to dive in yet unaware how much those pieces of plastic would impact my life.
I’ve continued on since then with every generation of console releases. I went through the 16-bit wars, and spent hours on the playground making fun of Genesis peeps while I had to live with my version of Mortal Kombat not having any blood. It was in the launch of the N64 where I began to lose my NinShades and started diving into PC gaming, and with the launch of Sony and Microsoft into the fringe it was a brave new world.
Fast forward to today, and we have incredible technology powering these massive worlds that takes hundreds of hours to explore. It’s amazing how far it’s come, and I truly believe it is an art with development taking years of time with massive teams and art direction that can rival motion pictures. With all of this access and technology the ugly world of micro-transactions have reared their penny pinching head, and I honestly thought that the world I had fell so in love with was in serious trouble of being changed forever, and for the worse.
Companies like EA are leading the charge with these recycled garbage games littered with micro transactions, skins, and other vending type fast food options available which are the root issue.
However, against this push of commercialization and marginalization there has also been something really amazing that has come out of all of this technology and access. Indie developers have started popping up again, and they are a large part of the sector. There has become this almost Punk music like backlash towards the mainstream push to steal your nickels. Companies like Nintendo and From Software, releasing these massively epic games like Breath of the Wild, and From Soft’s Soul’s series, and games like Cuphead or Shovel Knight to name a few where the developers clearly spent years developing these immersive worlds for the sake of doing it. Games where you can tell they were crafted with perfection in mind. These masterpieces of digital artistry that were made by gamers for gamers. \
This is what I’m excited about again. I love that companies like From Software are not only making these amazingly developed games, but that they are incredibly difficult. It reminds me of sitting on the bus on the way to grade school where we would all trade secrets on how to beat a boss, or someone figured a trick out and we all gathered round to hear their vestiges of wisdom. It has created this sense of community again. There is a vibrant gaming culture that is booming and it is because of these overly passionate developers pushing the limits of what we can do with artistic expression in this world, that is all about expression and fantasy spitting in the face of the mass produced and recycled sequels focused on ADHD gaming and micro-transacting.
So with that, the best thing that we can do as a gaming community is to protect it. This is our community. Don’t use or buy the micro-transaction pay for play garbage they are selling us, don’t let EA win, don’t let them poison the essence of gaming. It has already begun with these half finished products beings released where we now get to wait for a patch because all the developer cared about was getting it out to start selling season passes, or early sign up skins, guns, power ups what have you. It may seem like an obvious thing to say, but I think it’s the only way we will get the message across that this is not the way forward. If I am going to be paying $70 for a title, I expect it to be functioning and that I won’t have to pay a .25c every time I play to make sure I have the power-ups everyone else is buying to be competitive.
If we boycott this garbage as a community, they won’t have a choice. Finally, promote and support those developers that are fighting with and for us. Game on. Git Gud.
Jerad has just released his brand new single 'Home', go and check it out below.