Posts Tagged ‘Television’

lol Abort Quit: TV or Video Games?

A recent discussion came up in my home last month as we were moving into our first real home. See what happened was that we were without TV and Internet for about a week because our cable company decided they just didn’t care that I requested a service transfer two weeks before my move. They cared even less that they assured me 4 times that it would be taken care of. We spent 8 days without television or internet and the question came from my fiance “How are you not bored like I am?” My response was two words “video games”.

The discussion came up: If you had to give up one thing for the rest of your life what would it be, TV or Video Games?

Video Games Poster

Face it...they make the world go 'round

Her Argument for TV

When we play games we focus, we get in the zone, we strap on the game face and nothing gets in the way. However when we watch television there is discussion interaction and laying together just being with one another. I can’t refute any of those points. She is absolutely correct. Laying next to her while we watch TV is not something we can do when in the middle of a session of Demon’s Souls, Madden, or CoD because if we tried she would most likely catch a elbow. I would then get real familiar with my new basement really quick because that’s where I would be sleeping.

But the point rings true, I don’t care how multiplayer a game is, with the exception of Animal Crossing it’s difficult to not be task oriented. There is a bonding that takes place while vegging on the couch watching the latest episode of Fringe (btw, wtf Walternate? Don’t think I don’t know what you’re up to!). Curling up on the couch under a blanket and relaxing with a 75 lbs Goldendoodle laying on top of the two of us is a great way to just “be” with someone. It’s something we both value and you just can’t get that with a game.

My Argument for Games

The other side of the argument is that TV provides little interactivity. I’m not engaged in a television program. I can’t solve a puzzle or problem in a TV show. Video games are typically built around he premise of “there a problem to solve, get to it”. I have never watched an episode of Criminals Minds and felt accomplished. I have never once jumped on my couch, fist pumped the air and shouted as the credits rolled during an episode of AOTS (sorry Pereira).

While TV can be thought provoking and spur conversation I crave the experience. I want to feel that I’ve done something even in my off time. It’s why I my house is going to forever in a state of improvement.

With a game like Demon’s Souls you have to learn to play the game. You have to watch the environment, read what users have written, trust them or not. You are not just alone in a world you are interacting in it.

Once you look at more online MMORPG’s you are encouraged to travel with people. Few online games insist you go it alone. Star Wars: The Old Republic even went so far as to give you an NPC Companion. That’s precisely how important socialization is to games. “Even if you don’t want you, you’re still going to have to put up with someone”.

Then we have games like Heavy Rain with absolutely no social aspect outside of the person next to you on the couch. But what it does is allow is a rich cinematic experience wrought with tough decisions and game altering choices. I have found myself using it many times as a conversation piece with people to discuss how their games differed from mine, why they chose what they chose, and what they thought of their outcomes.

I find the world of gaming to be far more inviting and interactive, but who knows, I may in fact be the minority.

So now I leave it to you: If you had to give up one thing for the rest of your life what would it be? TV or Video Games?

note* – you’re not giving up an actual TV and no, you can’t stream TV to your console. Additionally…you cant play games on your TV. Just a straight up question, no trickeration. Yes I hate that word too.


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