In the real world, the definition of ‘Gamer’ can more often than not, give a non-Gamer a bad taste in their ears. At work or family gatherings, you may get a ‘Oh, you play VIDEO GAMES’ in a monotone or just a generally negative connotation over it, as if it’s a bad thing and we should change ourselves! Parents, school teachers, and even co-workers and bosses, may have negative things to toss in about your ‘Gaming’, if you decide to openly express how passionate you are for Gaming. Why can they not respect and uphold your value? How many times, when you were young, did your parents not shout out ‘Get off that video game, Timmy! You need to spend more time outside’ Even the Mars Hill Church has stated in one of their Youtube sermons, ‘Playing video games is not a sin, it is just stupid!’ – Well that’s a powerful statement to make! But unfortunately i feel this is the general mindset most non-Gamers have towards Gamers. Are they wrong?
Before we dig in and discover why we are treated this way, I would like you to ask yourself something – think about your history with video games. Take it back to Pac-Man, Mario Kart, Digimon/Pokemon, Tome Raider and Terminator – Would you be humble to state that you are a true Gamer? What i mean is this – You may have the name badge, but that doesn’t make you a Manager. What makes you a Manager is your expertise and ability to perform that job.. I have felt for years now that just because i see a person blowing hours away at their computer, i question if their heart and conscience is set into Gaming. We could call them… False-conversions of the Gaming industry? Now there’s an insult that you don’t hear often!
As with anything on the internet, we need multiple credible resources before making a decision on what a ‘Gamer’ is. We’re going to pull different definitions from different sources and find if they connect with each other entirely.
Google.com – ‘A person who plays a game or games, typically a participant in a computer or role-playing game’.
Wikipedia.com – ‘A Gamer is someone who plays interactive games, such as video games or tabletop games’.
Dictionary.com – ‘A person who plays games, especially computer or video games’.
Well pretty obvious we can conclude that all you have to do is play video games to be a Gamer! Now we could break this into deeper definitions, such as the definition of a ‘Hardcore Gamer’ and ‘Casual Gamer’, but getting into more definitions is not what will jump my point across the canyon.
I’m going to compare the definition of this with the definition of a Manager, as that is a common role that many people can fail or succeed at. They are both nouns and personal belief that pretty much anyone can become if they put their heart into it, so i feel these are efficient relations.
Manager(pay attention to the highlighted words)
Google,com -‘a person responsible for controlling or administering all or part of a company or similar organization’.
Dictionary.com – ‘(redirects from Manager)Management in business and organizations is the function that coordinates the efforts of people to accomplish goals and objectives by using available resources efficiently and effectively’
When we analyze these two definitions, we see they generally stay the same and we see that being a ‘Gamer’ is any average Joe that sits around playing Games; whilst being a Manager obviously promotes specific things such as responsibility, controls, direction, and business functions, clearly promoting the use of more professional terms to describe the responsibilities.
Gamer – ‘A person who controls an interactive video by electronically manipulating functioning imaging phases, either alone, accompanied by AI, or other Gamers, a person who accomplishes specific or broad objectives directed within a game’.
Manager – ‘A person who Manages. Such as Wendy’s or McDonalds’.
Clearly this definition of a Manager seems to be degraded as if the Gamer is in the hot-seat now? This swap shows direct illustration how your mind is influenced by what you are told and what you read. Now easily a man could state; ‘Well, Managers make triple-digit numbers. Gamers sit around begging their parents for money because they have no job!’ They may have a point…. Except…..
But.. Gamers make BANK too!
I could go on about the League of Legends Championship series, or any of the other competitive Gaming tournaments like world of Warcraft, Hearthstone; or even simply Twitch and Youtube streamers who make change off Advertisements and subscribers.The official League of Legends eSports tournament League Championship Series has been recognized as a fully professional sport by the U.S. State Department. And you can now actually receive Scholarships at a few specific colleges for just playing Video Games! I would like to hear a great, WOAH, for that!
But throwing out anymore research on that would bore me as i do not feel the need to prove to anyone that Gamers can make millions and be successful, and make much more cash than the average Restaurant Chain manager.
The Reason; and the Addiction
I pulled a few posts off of Gamespot.com to get some other peoples personal perspective.
One comment-er stated, ‘People see it as a waste of time‘ – giving the perspective you could be doing something better with your time
A second one i pulled stated, ‘It is a form of entertainment‘ – implementing it is not a reliable form of income or ‘choosable’ career path
But many other people suggest it is because Video Games are simply put, a ‘new thing’. Society is having to adapt with the change of lifestyle younger-generations are switching to, so they can feed their passion for Gaming – rather than being outside, building/fixing things, performing household duties, looking after your health and studying for school or work.
The reason is pretty simple. Gaming is classified as a HOBBY. Gaming is not viewed as a career path. To parents, it’s like playing with Lego’s. To teachers, it’s like doodling stick figures on your assignments. To Your co-workers or Boss, it makes you appear lazy and sloth. Are they right to think so?
I have tried to balance my work-life, social-life, and Gaming-life for some time now. It is not easy. Video games are an addiction, just like anything else that can take over your thoughts and emotions. The feelings of seeing the victory screen, moving onto the next level, beating that boss you have died to a hundred times, leveling up your skills, the action of besting another real-life person at something you have put hundreds, if not thousands, of hours into
They give a sense of accomplishment that can become an addiction
We have made the following conclusions, based off facts i have found in my real-life, and pulled from the internet;
-Gaming is not a reliable career path, not one your average-Joe can simply ‘choose’ and go with it
-Gaming can become addictive, and influence your lifestyle negatively, similar to a drug that would cause you to be… Lazy
-Gaming is a passion, something we put our time into that we enjoy and long to improve
Well, that was a punch in the gut!
The last section took a moment to take in. Because it is the sad truth about not all, but many of our Gamers. But wait, that brought me back to my original statement. What does it mean to be a Gamer? We have looked at the definition, came to the conclusion society feels we should be doing other things, that it is addictive.. But i would like to find out the difference between a ‘Gamer’ and a person who ‘plays games’! There doesn’t seem to be much of a difference, does there?
There are qualities of a Gamer that are superior towards your average blow-Joe who plays games
-A Gamer will learn balance to spend time with loved ones, and understands how not to let them clash
-A Gamer learns every thing there is to know about a game – spends the extra time to stop playing and to research specific statistics within a game to learn all there is to know
-A Gamer joins a gaming Que like their entire life has lead to this point – Is humble for every match played or level gained
-A gamer will contribute back to the community *intentionally by either purchasing from the game to support the developers, creating guides, or just being generally helpful and honorable when interacting with other players
Is our society not showing enough respect for our Gamers? Or are our Gamers undeserving of the title in its own, by our behavior within ourselves?
Let me know how you feel about what it means to be a true Gamer and why you think society frowns upon gaming(if you think they do!), in the comments! All constructive feedback is appreciated.