I really wanted to go to E3 this year. I feel like a small part of me is dying inside for being left on the outside in this, of all, great E3 years. You see, there is a cycle to the trade show, a recursive bell curve that gamers ride like a particularly bland and mildly disturbing roller coaster. Everyone has their favorite parts of the ride, the tense anticipation of clanking chains dragging us uphill, the tantalizing momentum purgatory of the apex, the screaming plummet, and for the less stout and sturdy, the moment just after the restraints release and weÃ‚'re free to vomit in a nearby trashbin. What was this metaphor about, again?Anyway, I really wanted to go to E3 this year. You see, this is the year of the PC.
I have a determined policy of not practicing excessive console bias. Having participated in a number of gaming discussions best expressed in scientific notation, I know that no one takes the sufferer of what I term Severe Emotional Console Attachment, or SECA, very seriously. SECA is a not particularly rare disorder that can disturb the prefrontal cortex, or the limbic system, or maybe the hypothalamus - I donÃ‚'t really know - and send otherwise rational people into blind support of ruthless multinational corporations with the kind of fervor one would expect from an ill tempered Rottweiler protecting its young. IÃ‚'ve no doubt that at some point, somewhere, SECA sufferers have come to blows over the financial reports of Nintendo, which is really the kind of mindlessly boring data that should elicit an arousal response no greater than a poorly written doctoral thesis on hyperbolic realism in the works of Thomas Kinkaid.
The more traditional term for this kind of behavior is, of course, fanboy, or the vastly more fallacious fanboi which, to seem slightly more edgy perhaps, cleverly replaces the y with an i. This is the kind of glyph manipulation best reserved for pros, like the people who suddenly add an e to words like shop for it's oh so classy affectation. I donÃ‚'t really care for the term, as its trotted out most often by those suffering from SECA in the first place to defend their own often poorly drawn conclusions against those with a reasonable argument.
Anyway, weÃ‚'ve all seen this kind of behavior, condemned this kind of behavior, and then in a brilliant move of blatant hypocrisy probably turned right around to practice this kind of behavior. ItÃ‚'s very hard to avoid doing such, which is exactly the kind of evidence that makes me certain it stems from a chemical imbalance or perhaps a lack of adequate iron or tungsten in our diets. ItÃ‚'s hard to say, because IÃ‚'m not a doctor and probably wouldnÃ‚'t be able to tell the difference between a stomach and a spleen if presented with such organs. Also, IÃ‚'d probably be violently ill at the sight, particularly if they were my stomach and/or spleen.
What was this metaphor all about again?
Anyway, I really wanted to go to E3 this year. You see, this is the year of the PC. We PC gamers have suffered several E3s where all the talk revolved around the next generation of consoles. With attention fixed on the PS2, Gamecube, and Xbox, for annoying number of years now, the consoles have monopolized the gaming buzz. And honestly, thatÃ‚'s fine. ThatÃ‚'s part of the gaming arc, a cycle that will almost certainly begin anew next year with a whole bunch of announcements about a whole new slew of game systems that people can use as an excuse to hurl profanity at one another.
But these years in between console wars, as large, usually Japanese, corporations figure out how best to again manipulate a world of customers into developing almost personal attachments with their wide eyed icons and angular logos, are when the PC leads the crowd in technology and in anticipated games. This is the year when people shut up for a while about the Ã‚"˜Death of the PCÃ‚', well at least anyone who can be reasoned with through the use of evidence, and instead marvel at the quality of games still being put out for what is clearly the most diverse platform on the market.
Oops, that last statement bordered on SECA. IÃ‚'ll have to watch that.
LetÃ‚'s look at this reasonably for a second. The sheer volume of PC games to be shown at this yearÃ‚'s E3 that IÃ‚'m genuinely looking forward to renews my faith in the PC in the same way that sharing a Frappuccino with an unusually prolix deity might renew your faith in a given religion. Particularly if that deity went on to describe his enthusiasm for the wealth of PC goodness at E3 this year. I could give you a laundry list of great PC games to hear about at this yearÃ‚'s E3 ... so I will:
Deus Ex: Invisible War, Doom 3, Half-Life 2, Dungeon Siege 2, Lionheart, Halo, Max Payne 2, Star Wars Galaxies, Everquest 2, Mythica, Republic, Elite Force 2, Breed, Thief 3, Homeworld 2, Railroad Tycoon 3, Sam and Max 2, Full Throttle 2, Knights of the Old Republic, Lords of Everquest, Counter-Strike: Condition Zero, World of Warcraft, Jedi Academy, The Movies, The Sims 2.
IÃ‚'m sure some of you might be able to construct an equally extended list of console games that you might think deserve the same level of enthusiasm as this august conglomerations, and to you IÃ‚'d probably wave my hand in an infuriating dismissive gesture and make a sound like Ã‚"˜pffttÃ‚'. YouÃ‚'d keep trying to tell me all about the great console games that IÃ‚'m completely glossing over, and even outright dismissing, but IÃ‚'d sit casually, maybe read the paper, flapping the pages noisely, and humming an off-key tune to make it very clear that I was quite intentionally ignoring you. Eventually youÃ‚'d grow irritated, make some sharp comment about fanboism (which I think can only be pronounced fan-bow-ism), and stomp off in a pleasingly fussy manner. I would, of course, feel like IÃ‚'d won an argument.
What was this metaphor all about, again?
Anyway, I really wanted to go to E3 this year.
It is, you see, the year of the PC!