Hey, gamers. Take a knee, pull up a chair, kick up your feet. Let’s talk. It’s already the second day of 2015 and time’s a wastin’.

Look, I don’t know you, but if you’re a gamer, I know something about you. The particulars are vague. Maybe you’re just a casual hobbyist. Maybe you’re a college kid who has more than once skipped that 8 AM class because of an all night DOTA 2 marathon. Maybe your definition of gaming is just…Pokemon, or maybe you’re a hot chick trying to monetize your Hearthstone Twitch channel.

So, I don’t know you, but I know this: you like to win. You like to move forward. You’re willing to invest time in getting good at something. And, at some point a girlfriend, boyfriend, spouse or parent told you to get off your ass and stop wasting time with those stupid games.

Well, you’re gonna show them.

Because you’re a gamer, you have skills: skills that you can actually use in the real world. You’ve been developing your judgement, decision-making and quick thinking chops with every round of Destiny. League of Legends has taught you to cooperate effectively with others (it might have also taught you to be a total dickwad, and we’ll talk about that, too).

Get my drift? That’s what this series is going to be about: taking a look at what you already know how to do thanks to your hobby, and maybe trying to apply it outside of games.

While it might be fun to explore, this series isn’t about games as metaphors for life. True, life might actually be a roguelike–one dumb move and you’re dead for good–but that’s just a bummer and you can explore the parallels between RPGs and everyday life on your own (oh, yeah, they’re there).

I’m not a Fortune 500 mogul, a fitness guru, a motivational speaker, or a wise sage. I’m just a dude who has spent twenty-five years gaming, thinking about games, and trying to get some perspective about life in general. At some point I realized that games had something to teach me and there were lessons learned in games that I could take to work and beyond. Ok, the teabagging incident: bad example.

Whether you’re a cosplaying Dragon Age fanatic or think Candy Crush is the apogee of game design, you have something in common with all of us who identify as gamers: you want to be happy (whatever that means to you), you want to be successful (again, whatever that means), you want to feel a sense of contribution, fulfillment, and purpose. Let’s talk about how to get there and use games to help us.

When I say “let’s talk,” I mean it. I want to hear from you. What’s getting in your way? What are confused about? Comment or email.

That’s all for now. Next week, we’ll look at how strategy games–real time and turn-based–can help you make some kickass decisions in real life.


“Making you a better geek, one post at a time!”





Tags : 2015 in Video Gaminggaming
Mark Steighner

The author Mark Steighner

Mark Steighner is a composer, playwright, teacher, musician, and videogamer from the Pacific Northwest. He’s also a grandfather and older than the rest of the EB staff combined. Just goes to show that one can put off actual maturity for a really long time.