We’ve come a long way in the gaming culture. Recently tuning into an episode of the YouTube Podcast DudeSoup, I was surprised to hear the bluntness of discussion regarding the way video gaming has been viewed over the last few decades– Particularly how it has shifted to the positive; which then got me thinking:
“If video games are mainstream, why are mobile games neglected?”
Used to be: ‘Games were for children’. Eventually, that sentiment evolved into ‘Video games are for children’. Since being amalgamated into the zeitgeist, video games have really come into their own, and then, oddly enough, turned somewhat in on themselves and proclaimed ‘Mobile games are for children, casuals’.
Just in case you were unfamiliar with the world according to ‘Hardcore’ gaming enthusiasts, the hierarchy goes:
- PC Master Race
- Console peasants
- Handheld children
- Filthy casual mobile gamers
“It’s a matter of gaming hardware power!” You yell, knowing full well that the current day smartphone is more powerful than the entirety of NASA during its premiere trip to the moon, all the while while completely ignoring the fact that a modern day iPhone is lighter and carries more processing speed than the highest selling console of all time. It’s this perspective, this US V. THEM mentality that have kept gamers subjugated to the realms of basement dwelling stereotypes for so very long. Now that gaming has been thrust into the limelight (with its multi-billion dollar eSport leagues, film franchises and television shows etc.) it seems odd to me that we, as a subculture, would discriminate against our own after so recently gaining acceptance.
On some level, I understand it– The borderline petty need for ‘revenge’ against the people who may or may not have bullied gamers in our younger years for our hobbies and interests. It sucks that for much of this generation (average age for a gamer is 31 and almost evenly gender split— Surprisingly not an army of 13 year old boys who tout sultry exploits about being with your mother) many of us have had to spend a chunk of their gaming careers in the closet, afraid to admit what our favourite button-mashing pastimes are.
However, It’s incredibly important to note here that the average ‘casual’ gamer is not your bully, and in all likelihood never was.
It won’t be long before mobile gaming becomes fully accepted as a form of ‘Hardcore’ and posts like this become an awkward relic of the times ‘When people thought playing on your phone was a sign of gaming ineptitude’. The lines between PC, console and mobile are quickly blurring and it’s about time we throw the homogeneity bias out the window and admit to ourselves that the changes in viewpoints about gamers also need to come from the community itself.
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