The National Video Game Championships boot up in Albuquerque
Ben Eberle is what you'd call a YouTube-made celebrity. In the past year, the video of Ben slaying Guitar Hero II's "Psychobilly Freakout" on expert level has attracted more than 8 million hits. Its appeal is immediate: Ben's fingers flying across the color-coded buttons of his video game guitar, his back turned to the television screen, playing from memory while bobbing his head in true rock-star fashion.
Complex games yield unexpected results
The sun rises in the east and sets in the west; God's in his heaven, all's right with the world; video game designers design and video game players play. Except, that is, when the players come up with their own rules. Theorists call this "emergent play."
All of my friends enjoy playing video games, and so do I, but there's a problem. You see, I still play the games of my childhood—Frogger, BurgerTime, Tetris, Duck Hunt, Mario Bros., Sonic the Hedgehog, etc. The console doesn't matter; as long as it supports games made between the early '80s and the early '90s, I'm all for it. As is deducible, my friends' gaming concerns are more modern. They like LAN parties and play popular games like WoW, Halo, Call of Duty and Grand Theft Auto. To them, the vintage two-dimensional games I play are a novel joke compared to the superior graphics and gameplay embodied by their favorites. I like video games and I like my friends, but I fear that being stuck in the past is compromising my relationships. But I just like helping Peter Pepper make those burgers so much! Brenda, what should I do?