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Losing the Knack to Play Videogames?

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A while ago, I wrote that I was supremely annoyed with Super Mario Galaxy 2 for killing me more times than I could count, and put it down to the extremely high skill level needed. This is one of the things that I don’t like about that game and gaming in general. However, a conversation last night between a friend and I led to a desire to dust off a console or two and catch up on some games.

Perhaps I did not make the right choice of game, but I chose to play Star Wars: Rogue Leader on the Gamekewb (name derives from how a Welsh friend of mine pronounced the name). I did not get on well with it at all, which made me remember why I stopped playing in the first place.

I feel that failing to play games as I failed to play this one is a step down from my previous achievements in gaming.  These include completing Lylat Wars on expert mode with all medals, getting all 493 Pokémon in Pokémon Pearl with only six of those Pokémon gained through cheating (that is to say, I only personally cheated with those six; others cheated and then traded them to me in the case of a few others), and completing Banjo Kazooie with all collectables.

Consequently, I’ve become convinced of something I have suspected for a while — I may have lost the knack of playing video games.

In recent times, I have played both Super Mario Galaxy games to completion, a feat that I am very proud of. However, also in recent times is my notable failure to get anywhere at all on a replay of The Legend Of Zelda 64 (this was less than a year ago). Fair enough, I’m not that good at the game. However, what’s really impressively bad about the replay is that I had Gamefaqs open on my laptop while I was playing the game, and I was consulting it every step of the way. But, I still haven’t got out of it. I believe my cartridge’s version of Link is currently standing somewhere in the Forest Temple awaiting instructions from the Almighty Player. Most of the time now when I play videogames, similar stuff tends to happen. I still haven’t completed Super Mario Bros., which should be quite easy to do, but I keep dying on the last world.

It might just be that I’m out of practice, or that I’ve lost my enthusiasm for it (possibly when I removed myself from the basement and took an interest in girls). However, I used to think “once a gamer, always a gamer.”  Evidently that is not always the case. So is it me, or have games gotten harder?

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About Scott Varnham

  • I can understand what you’re saying although I think it’s more of an adjustment than anything, I know I can’t complete Super Mario Bros nowdays and there are plenty who’ve never seen Ocarina of Time through to the end (I myself left it on two ocassions before I completed it).

    I think NGamer mentioned not long ago though how games have gotten easier, this is definitely true and if you were to play 9 out of 10 new games these days you’d have no issue with them. Which brings me back to my adjusting to games point, I used to be brilliant and the Mega Drive Sonic games however after years of the newer ones I have since lost the skill I used to have on the oldschool Sonics.