Just like cinema blockbusters and marathon-inducing TV shows, video games are a massive part of our lives. With so many types of game, there are many ways to devour these incredible, immersive worlds. Whether it’s being hounded by blue shell in Mario Kart or exploring the wild catching Pokémon, everyone should be able to have a slice of the huge video game pie!
Celebrate a Shared Love for Gaming
Social media and websites like Twitch are making it even easier to showcase a passion for all things geeky. It’s what makes this community so special: finding likeminded folk who have experienced the same games or discovering something brand new to explore. A game collector may re-ignite a long lost 90s memory, a streamer could tempt you into an intriguing new world! It’s exciting and a massive part of what makes it an incredibly versatile medium.
One of our aims is to celebrate a shared love for gaming, superheroes and all the delicious geeky goodness that sits in-between. We want to shout about it; discover just how diverse and interesting your gaming stories are! We need to dismantle the stigma. It’s not an activity just for children or young boys, or something to grow out of. Whether you’ve been playing for decades or dip into a mobile game on a daily commute, everyone should have the freedom to share the things they love without fear of being judged.
There’s a dated stereotype still that gamers are required to slither away into the shadows. It’s unfortunate to see, and certainly not helped by the general media’s portrayal of gaming culture. The big headlines clamour for more traffic than a London school-run in the rain. Sensationalist articles paint such a negative light about a medium that brings a plethora of positive emotions to billions of people every day!
A Dated ‘90s Hollywood Archetype
Because of this tired narrative, many commenters outside the scene have a preconceptions: gamers wear, act and look a certain way. A question we’re asked a lot is: “Why don’t you feature more real gamers?” Should someone who enjoys games have to look, dress and act a certain way? Of course not! The decade-old notion of “gamer” is stale and out-dated. Just because someone doesn’t necessarily fit Hollywood’s dusty checklist of gamer tropes, doesn’t mean that they can’t be into gaming!
What’s discouraging to see is some fashion brands capatalising on that very idea. Some are encouraging gamers to bottle away their hobby as part of their slogans. It’s something that may do more harm to the community than good. It, again, re-enforces negative stereotypes about those who play. It could be discouraging for those who love gaming from openly talking about their passion because they don’t fit this mould.
What’s even more disheartening is a sense of gatekeeping that happens in some gaming circles. Self-proclaimed experts become riled up, aggressive and abusive towards those who they feel can’t possibly be gamers. Snap judgement because of how people dress, gameplay skills, age, or simple first impressions using a mind-set that hasn’t left the playground. Everyone has varying levels of knowledge and experience. Why not share, discuss and inspire – rather than exclude? It’s still sad to see in this day and age; where archaic ’90s statements still linger in the air like one of Wario’s gut-wrenching farts. Surely more people playing and buying games is a benefit to the industry as a whole?
Embrace a Love of Geeky Things
There’s a wealth of knowledge and experience out there, something new and intriguing to discover every day. Instagram, in particular, is a great way to highlight the broad appeal of gaming to a massive audience. It’s absolutely amazing seeing all the hard work poured into playthroughs, gaming collections, cosplay and more. It should be a positive, encouraging space to enjoy and discuss all things geeky – of course open to productive discussion and constructive criticism. All this is helping inspire change; broaden the appeal of gaming and dismantle the stigma.
Love geeky things? Own it, embrace it, and certainly don’t be afraid to celebrate the things that bring you a smile!
There’s definitely something out there for everyone! It’s great to see so many people discover something new, join in the shared retro feels and, most importantly, have fun!