Root, root, root, for the home base

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Root, root, root, for the home base

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Video games are huge. Most recently/notably is Pokemon Go, an augmented reality smartphone game using the license of the popular card game and tv show of the mid to late nineties. This game is so popular that it even transcends generations – when my girlfriend and I were walking around catching the in-game creatures at the Dover Public Library, a three-or-so year old girl walked up to us and asked what team we were on.

Being newbies to the game at the time, we replied that we were on the blue team – we did not know the team names then, only the colors. The little girl, however, clearly knew the names of each of the three teams. After asking us, she walked over to another couple that was playing, and asked them the same question.

“Team Valor”, this couple responded, and gave the child a high five. She was elated.

Since it happened, I have been thinking about this interaction. That little girl reminded me of myself at my first baseball game – the Redsox vs the Rangers (I think it was the Rangers). At that game and point in my life, I was obsessed with baseball. The home team, the Redsox were my favorite, though they did poorly at the time.

Conversations on the bus back then, throughout my childhood, and even now, were and are about favorite sports and sports teams. Now though, these same types of conversations are about video games as well.

What is your favorite game? Or, what console do you have? Or, what is your k/d ratio in Battlefield? People are relating to video games in the same way that they have traditionally related to sports, which I think is great. Games are more accessible than sports, at least with respect to participation.

Even better is the fact that, unlike sports, video games do not depend on regions or localities for their fans. There is no home team in video games. I may be on team Mystic along with people all over the world.

As long as we are discussing the similarities between sports and video games, we must look at those similarities with negative connotations – trash talkers. Just like the people who wear “Yankees suck!” on a t-shirt, there are people that badmouth certain games or consoles. Some might complain about Microsoft’s terrible attempt to make the hardware comprising the original X-Box, or may lament Sega’s absence from the hardware market after the Dreamcast, or (like me) might complain that Blizzard was too greedy in making Overwatch but that (also like me) the lemmings would shell out $60 for it on the day of its release anyways.


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