What game/system made you define yourself as a gamer?

Just curious what game or system caused you to really see your self as a "gamer?" While my family had a SNES and later a Genesis that we used, Sierra's Betrayal in Antara on the PC really made me a PC gamer. It is still one of my favorite experiences, even though its not the greatest game ever. From there I went onto Diablo I & II, both Fallouts, and the Elder Scroll's series. Ive still had other consoles and handhelds, but the PC has been my main focus ever since I loaded up that game.

Begging and pleading with my parents for a massive advance on my allowance so I could get a whole four megs of RAM and a Sound Blaster card to get the best possible Wing Commander experience on the PC. And they agreed as long as I did a ton of extra housework, mowing lawns of the neighbors, things like that.

When I heard the music building up for the first time as the pilots scrambled to launch their fighters, I knew it had all been worth it.

I had all of the consoles growing up but it was the PS2/Socom series that hooked me into gaming and the world of online gaming.

I think Wolfenstein3D for my 386 was what finally convinced me to take an interest in keeping up with the industry. Before that it was just kind of a passing fancy. I think I was about 9 or 10.

I am a life long fan of B.J. Blaskowitz and his Nazi killing antics.

I'd say it was the 486 I added 4mb of ram to (for a whopping total of 8mb!) so I could play Doom. Then there was Dune II and Command & Conquer, both of which really turned me into a PC Gamer. My console gaming history has a big-ass gap in it that spans from the SNES all the way up to the release of the PS2. I played a lot of PS1 games and a lot of 64 games, but only with friends at their houses. Never actually owned any of those systems myself.

We started out with an Atari 2600 and never stopped. My family never owned a PC or had internet access until I was 17. That's why I'm a console gamer.

I don't think I can name a single game or system that can define who I am. I played many good and bad games in my life and half of them I don't even remember. But there are games that stand out in my mind that kept me gaming all these years. Phantasy Star IV was the one reason I got into RPGs.

3 games made me a gamer, rather than a person who likes games:
1) Tie Fighter - Collector's Edition CD-ROM.
2) Myth 2: Soulblighter
3) Mechwarrior 2: 31st Century Combat

The first two PC games my parents bought me for my birthday when I was 9: Quest for Glory 3 and King's Quest 6.
I've never looked back.

Morrolan wrote:

3 games made me a gamer, rather than a person who likes games:
1) Tie Fighter - Collector's Edition CD-ROM.
2) Myth 2: Soulblighter
3) Mechwarrior 2: 31st Century Combat

I think that list would turn anyone into a life long gamer. It's like a trifecta of awesome.

GBell wrote:

Just curious what game or system caused you to really see your self as a "gamer?"

The first one.

The real "sensawunda", though, came with the first thing I encountered that was close to a fantasy RPG--Adventure for the Atari 2600.


I poured as many hours into playing games like Mail Order Monsters, Archon and Super Boulder Dash as I did building levels in Ultimate Wizard or modules in Adventure Construction Set. The 2600 set the table but the C64 dished up the savory goodness that hooked me for life.

Phase 1: Telstar "Pong" and Colecovision .. also Adventure and Zork and random Apple II stuff.

Phase 2: XBox, PGR2 and Counterstrike. To a lesser extent Madden.

In between I only played DOOM 2 and Half Life.

I had a Nintendo, but it wasn't until I unwrapped that Sega Genesis that my grades started dropping.

Richthofen's War. There were gamers before computers, you know.

My first systems were the C64 and Odyssey 2, but I was a bit too young to have the powerful memories of these that I have of the NES. I still remember the first time I played Super Mario Bros. at one of my parents' friends' house. I played once, and never made it past the first level, but my brother and I were hooked to the point that we immediately started pestering the neighbors for chores we could do for money. Being about 7 at the time we were never able to really hold on to any of the money for long (penny candies!) but were graced with an NES for Christmas that year. We were literally jumping up and down for joy (I still remember this moment as well). After Mario came Gauntlet (with the funky non-standard Tengen cart), Dragon Warrior (free with Nintendo Power!), Megaman 2, Rad Racer, and an obsession with the power glove that caused me to build my own box for it like the guy on The Wizard had. I later took the glove apart, just like my NES advantage and my brother's Darth Vader action figures.

Edit: Oh yeah, you say you liked Betrayal at Antara? Have you played Betrayal at Krondor then as well? Antara was the spiritual sequel to Krondor, released at the same time as the official sequel, Return to Krondor (licensing issues). BaK is the superior game out of all three. It's a free download now.

King's Quest II or III. I remember when I was very little my family went to a computer store and got the game along with a hint book that you used a magic marker to show the hints. Thought it was a really cool game. What made me love gaming was playing The Legend of Zelda III: A Link to the Past.

I also learned to ply D&D with Birthright when I broke my arm one summer and my mom made my brother let me play with him and his friends in the attic.

Wizardry on the Apple II. There were some text-only rpgs that came soon after that or were out at the same time, but I never got into them the way I did Wizardry. To be honest, though, I don't think of myself as a gamer.

I think it was the IBM (EDIT-now unsure of platform) we had when I was a kid.
The game was Lode Runner.
Or maybe it was Missile Defence on the 2600.
Hmmm, Pac Man on the Apple?
Space Quest? Police Quest? Manic Mansion? Dig Dug?
Bump n' Jump on the Adam?

God, now that I am thinking about them all, I couldn't possibly narrow it down.
I have been a gamer since I played my first game.
One of my best memories was finishing Contra on the NES over and over again with my cousin.

We had a 2600 when I was really young and then got a NABU (I'll bet you none of you guys have ever heard of that one) and an Atari 130XE (Atari's C64) which is when I really got into gaming. I turned into a hardcore PC gamer when I first played a pirated copy of the original Police Quest on my Dad's Toshiba 286-20 portable computer (not a laptop, a portable computer that weighed 40+ pounds and had no battery cause the RLL hard disk drank too much power) with its orange plasma screen that would burn you if you touched it. Man, I have to play that game again some day...

Ultima Exodus on Apple II. Still my favorite game of all time.

Zork, on a Leading Edge IBM Clone. I was all up in the Atari 2600, and even owned some Telstar Pong "console" prior to that, but I think of myself as a PC gamer these days and it was assuredly the Infocom games that did the trick.

While I played on my parents' pong set and an Atari 2600 as a kid, Zork I on a Commodore SX-64 was what turned me into a true gamer. I spent ages exploring it and have been playing anything I can get my hands on since then.

I see so many great games mentioned in this thread. Good memories!

[Edit: D'oh! Nearly a copy of mono's post! Ah well... I think there are LOTS of people who cut their teeth the same way. Hehe.]

Bard's Tale on my Apple IIc. That was my moment of going "Ah HAH!"

I grew up fairly poor; we couldn't afford a fancy Nintendo or any such. However, when I was 7 or 8, someone in my grandmothers congregation (she was a Methodist minister, now retired), gave her a Tandy Color Computer II and asked her to find a deserving home for it. Along with the machine we received a couple of tandy joysticks, a few games, some 'utilities', and a number of books (one of those explained the excitement and wonder of the form of communication, electronic mail, and other electronic communication ... even at age 8 I knew that would become the 'next big thing', and begged and pleaded with my parents to buy a modem, but there was no way we could afford it at the time). One of the games we obtained, in cartridge form, was Dungeons of Daggorath. For awhile, my mother considered it too 'adult' for us to play. Eventually she gave in began allowing my younger brother and I time playing Daggorath as rewards, and eventually we gained 'full access'. I actually still remember the first time I was allowed to play; that next hour turned me into a gamer.

Wizardry on the Apple II.

Wizardry was what really hooked me on gaming, even though I never owned an Apple 2. I never was able to play through it very far, just in short jaunts, but it was all over for me after that.

I think I probably became 'a gamer' on the Amiga 1000, and sealed my fate when I bought my own 500 and went to work in a software store.

Ultima 3 on my Atari 400.

I had so many systems growing up. 2600, Intellavision, Space Quest on the Apple 2. But I was not a true gamer until PS1

I never considered defining myself as a gamer, but I first became aware of "serious" computer games with Temple of Apshai on our TRS-80 when I was 9 or 10.

After that, I was hooked nearly exclusively on 3 series: Wizardry (1,2,3), Zork(s), and Ultima(s) on the Apple IIe. Wizardry 1 "Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord" just blew me away, I probably spent more time with that game than many mmorpgs.

Hmm I was into games for a while but I'd say the first game where it went from an occasional thing I did to being a hardcore gamer, would be Ultima Online for the PC.

I had the original Pong, the Atari 2600, C64, and finally an NES. I played them, and enjoyed them. Then I forgot about them during high school. It wasn't until college when we started having all-night Madden and Mario Fests on an SNES that I considered spending my own cash on a game system. So, I guess I became an actual gamer then.

Never really considered gaming on my PC, but was drawn into Quake and FPS Football Pro, and became a PC gamer. I figured I was a PC gamer for life, as I sold my SNES to my daughter's babysitter.

But then, after having bought a couple of new PC's, spent way too much time and cash upgrading, I finally gave up. When Warcraft III played with no video, and I had to do the damn update the drivers thing, only to find out the game ran like crap on my PC, it was enough. So, I picked up a Gamecube, and went Mac, knowing that I was basically giving up gaming on my computer, save Warcraft III, that was included on the same disk as the PC version, and the Mac version of Civ III, which I will always have around. To be fair, I had picked up a dreamcast soon after Sega announcedthey were no longer making them. I wanted to play NFL 2K to wash the bad tase of Football Pro 99 out of my mouth. So I had an idea that console gaming had become palatable.

So I am now just a gamer. I don't play much, well except for poker, on my Mac, but own both a Wii and a 360, after having owned a Gamecube and an Xbox. I will probably always own a console now.

I think it is interesting, though, that when I looked back at my history, that I was a pretty much a non-gamer throughout high school.

For me it was my C64 and the Epyx Olympic games. That was also what made me realize how fun multiplayer is! We'd get a bunch of us and have our own Olympics covering all the titles. I remember one time when it was tied between me and one other guy going down to the hackey sack which I always sucked at. I lost, but it was very tense.