Friday, March 12, 2010

The word "Gamer"

People, hey.

I think I hate the word "gamer." I think that it is an obnoxious word.

How did this word come to indicate people who play games that are considered nerdy?

How is it that you are a gamer exactly if you love video games and/or roleplaying games?

Why is it that if you like to play baseball or chess or something like that, that doesn't make you a gamer?

As far as I can tell, the term "gamer" gained it's common usage mostly by not having the word "play" in it. The word "play" makes things sound like they for kids. Video game and RPG players want people to take their hobbies seriously for some reason, so they'd rather people called it "gaming" than "playing a game."

I guess that it is possible that the term became popular simply by being shorter than "such-and-such game player" or whatever. I guess that might be it. I guess it's quicker to say, "let's game!" than "let's play a game!"

But it's still dumb. It makes us look like a bunch of oversensitive teenagers trying to distance ourselves from childhood, or like we're trying to build a subculture based on how we spend some of our afternoons.

While I love pen-and-paper roleplaying games, and even video games sometimes, I don't think I would ever seriously call myself a gamer. Nor would I inflict the title on someone else unless I was specifically being pejorative.

I'm not so insecure as to be uncomfortable with the fact that I spend time every week playing make-believe with friends. I do not need to make up a really dumb term for it, so I can identify myself as part of a community.

Hey guys, let's call ourselves "Bookers," because we like to read books. Let's call ourselves "Filmers," because we like to watch movies. Let's do it. Let's do it because it will not be stupid.

Let's not do stupid things.

No comments:

Post a Comment