I never fit. Ever. No matter what I do or how the industry changes, I am simply not synonymous with video games. Or so most say.

It's not just a matter of stereotypes; it's more about associations. For instance, if someone enjoys camping, most will assume they also like animals. If someone likes to sing karaoke, it's usually safe to assume that person is a music-lover. Various elements of our hobbies can and often are found in other leisure activities, so it's natural to make such assumptions. But here are a few that people make when they discover you're a gamer, and my corresponding reality:

You must like sci-fi; both reading it and watching it

Nah. There was a time when I loved Robert Jordan's "Wheel of Time" series and I did enjoy "Firefly" but for the most part, I'm no sci-fi buff. I never understood the fascination with "Star Wars" and "Star Trek," I don't watch any sci-fi on TV or in the theaters, and as far as reading goes, I've stuck to the classics over the past five or six years. This is mostly because the classics vastly outstrip even the best contemporary work, but whatever.

You must've been into comic books…or maybe still are

Nope. I think I read a few Archie comic books at my grandmother's house when I was a kid, but that's about it. I'm pretty sure I never owned any myself and I didn't really care, either. It's just another obsession I've never grasped and thus, the superhero phase in Hollywood didn't really appeal to me, either. I did like the "Batman" movies, though. I guess comics have always been lumped into "geekdom" from the start, and that's unavoidable and undying.

You must like gadgets and all other electronic stuff, too

Wrong. I hate most all of them; I barely use my five-year-old cell phone and I couldn't possibly care less about smartphones. I basically despise the "social" Internet networks like Facebook and MySpace and Twitter. If I didn't use it for work, I'd probably only have a computer for writing and e-mail; I know very little about computers in general. I had some fun with remote-controlled cars back in the day, and those little handheld Tiger games, but that's about it. Games are my only electronic passion, really.

You must be in poor health

Coming from a family that encourages a good diet and exercise, and being athletic from the time I was in kindergarten, this is almost out of the question. This is usually the biggest surprise when the uneducated find out what I enjoy (and what I do ). Many think I did play video games a lot, and then I discovered sunlight and decided to lose 100 pounds. I could tell them I've had a standard workout regiment for 8 years and I could probably curl them if they lay horizontal, but why bother? Their head will explode.

You must only play video games

The idea that anybody who plays a game once is immediately hooked for life came from the addiction scares of the '80s. And trust me, it really hasn't gone anywhere. For whatever reason, the clueless assume that if you're a gamer, that's all you are; it defines your life. The only way it's even close to reality for me is because it's my job; other than that, it's quite inaccurate. It's just another automatic assumption that has never encompassed me.

Like I said, I just don't fit. "To be a gamer, you have to…" seems to follow in the minds of the mainstream populace, and I'm not really complaining. It's only natural to make connections. I'm just wondering how many others don't fit the mold, so-to-speak. And P.S.- the reason I chose this picture is because most girls don't play their games wearing underwear and high heels.  It's about as rare as finding a gamer like me, I suppose.

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Ole_Gunner
Ole_Gunner
9 years ago

Yesssss

Mog
Mog
9 years ago

darn society and their mentality!

Douchebaguette
Douchebaguette
9 years ago

Agreed. It's like reading the Today section on MSN – over half the articles on there make me laugh ['Chocolate-based beauty treats – forget the easter eggs, try our guilt free alternatives' or 'Diet tips for men only' and of course the 10,456 articles on what both genders apparently want in their love lives and how to gain that trust according to the opinion of 1 person.] It's actually likely you'll find an article about people who play video-games along with all the stereotypes above, associated.

Materialistic as hell. I mean who lets these people write this confetti?

AcHiLLiA
AcHiLLiA
9 years ago

Good thing Society wasn't a big role when I started gaming.

LightShow
LightShow
9 years ago

you forgot "you must be highly opinionated on your favorite system, series and particular game"

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

Nah… that's a view from gamer circles, not an outside view. Though perhaps immaturity could be added into the editorial.

LightShow
LightShow
9 years ago

point.

FM23
FM23
9 years ago

So true, so true.

Riku994
Riku994
9 years ago

I like electronics. None of the others apply to me, and I'm not even a huge electronics buff…. I may have to admit to only playing video games, but i do also see my friends a lot. If I had a job I'd go to it..

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

Those are all fairly bad interpretations of most of the gamers I know. I mean, people are people. And gaming is just another hobby for most. Those uninitiated with the hobby simply make assumptions based on the stereotypes that cropped up thirty years ago. It's a sad mentality, and as bad as racism or sexism in my eyes.
Peace.

Shiva369
Shiva369
9 years ago

Yeah, I'm not into much sci-fi, loved Star Wars as a kid and watched the 2nd gen Battlestar Galactica, but don't get Trek or any of those other series. Comics, nope. Sci-fi books, a little Heinlein and Asimov as a teen but def not now. Made a lot of models until about 3 yrs ago, so there's that…
Must admit tho, when I read your line about camping, my first thought was "what's camping got to do with animals…oh right, *that* camping". So that'd fit the stereotype I guess 😉

Qubex
Qubex
9 years ago

Wonderfully written Ben, and so true. All non-gamers should have a quick read through what you wrote… it may just educate them about the people behind gaming, and that actually, the adage that all of us are different and individual holds true, no matter what our main hobby or interests are.

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

Scarecrow
Scarecrow
9 years ago

None of those apply to me either, specially the sci-fi one and the electronics ones (cell phones).

Have always disliked Star Wars and its clones.

These associations are ignorant, and will sadly be passed down from generation to generation by society.

One has to eventually not care about what people think about gamers.

Clamedeus
Clamedeus
9 years ago

Yeah, i don't care what others say. If it's something you like doing don't let them stop you it's pretty ignorant that people would criticize you for doing things that you like or label you as something that.

One last thing. F what society thinks.

Clamedeus
Clamedeus
9 years ago

I love sci-fi and reading about it, i like comics although i haven't read one in a long time.

I love electronics, my health is ok it could be better i got sick a couple of years ago they still don't know what happened both my kidneys shut down on me when i was 19/18 i can't quite remember had a stroke was in a coma for 2 weeks had to re-learn things like speech, reading etc my memory is horrible.

Had surgery so my metabolism slowed i put on some pounds working on getting that off i weigh like 208 even though i don't look like it.

But that's life for you, you gotta learn to love what you have and chug along.

But the most weirdest part though i was very healthy when i was younger and Bam! I used to go outside and do a lot of things like basketball swimming etc.


Last edited by Clamedeus on 4/15/2011 10:37:28 PM

Scarecrow
Scarecrow
9 years ago

Yeah man, life's weird. One just has to adapt and find what's best for oneself.

Clamedeus
Clamedeus
9 years ago

I agree.


Last edited by Clamedeus on 4/15/2011 11:13:34 PM

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

I've been to a similar place, and games were a great way to keep my mind sharp at a time when I had medical issues that kept me from interacting much.

BTNwarrior
BTNwarrior
9 years ago

and you apparently have to be a hot chick who likes to walk around the house in your underwear and high heels

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

well that's a given.

Underdog15
Underdog15
9 years ago

Aren't you?

Danny007
Danny007
9 years ago

To Be A Gamer, You Have To… Enjoy Playing Games(period)

AcHiLLiA
AcHiLLiA
9 years ago

Well their is one important thing that I always think of and I'm sticking to it for life.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

There's an article attached to this picture? Really? Sorry, I was focused on the picture…Definitely my sort of gamer that. Obviously has many varied interests including high heels but not a great deal of clothing. Perfect….

LOL!

I fall into about two of the multiple stereotypes for gamers, and a few other categories that would ordinarily rule out being a gamer, so I guess I'm pretty typical…LOL!

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
9 years ago

I just have a bad feeling she's like 15.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

SayWhatNow!?!?!?

That would indeed be bad, find another image…quickly!


Last edited by TheHighlander on 4/16/2011 2:09:08 AM

psxmax
psxmax
9 years ago

We are watching the both of you now. A specially you TheHighlander. Don't let it happen again, else all of your trophies will be deleted. (j/k)

Underdog15
Underdog15
9 years ago

Yeah… Watch it Highlander. Or I'll give you a "specially" to you too!

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

Hey, pretty and petite does *not* automatically mean young, especially when the pretty and petitelady is Japanese, Korean or another of the countries who's women possess more than their fair share of 'cute'.

hadouken
hadouken
9 years ago

Awful stereotypes. I think you left the one off that gamers don't get any ladies either lol.

hadouken
hadouken
9 years ago

Some of those do apply to me. I love gadgets and my health is decent but could be better.

Mog
Mog
9 years ago

I doubt there is anybody in this world who is 'completely' healthy. There is always something, I have never met anybody utterly healthy: mentally, physically, socially and spiritually.

Sooo yeah, everyone can use some improvement.

It comes back to this idea of 'nobody is perfect'


Last edited by Mog on 4/16/2011 12:15:55 AM

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Ultimately, it's easy to cast a net over any group of people and say "They are so _____" but then you meet someone who doesn't fit that mold and you have to re-evaluate yourself.

It's the people who refuse to allow anything BUT the stereotype in who I'm worried about. Stereotypes come from somewhere, but I'd like to think that somewhere down the line being a regular gamer will be as accepted as being a regular movie-goer. It probably won't be soon but we'll get there.

I never quite fit in anywhere so I always gave a nod to Sinatra and did it my way. One of the greatest things about this life is that really, nobody gives a sh*t what you do. No girl goes home and sits on her couch alone and says "Wow I'm glad I turned THAT guy down, HE plays video games!"

Live a flourishing life and be happy with yourself and you'll both attract the right kind of people around you and not turn into a righteous pr*ck.

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
9 years ago

Well said. But I get this feeling that some girl somewhere has indeed said exactly that. LOL

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Maybe, but I've come to realize that, well you wouldn't want that person around anyway if they aren't wise enough. And the more I put myself out there, the more I realize that I'm a hundred times harder on myself than anyone else is. People are so wrapped up in their lives that it's pretty selfish to think they take your foibles home with them.

I've also noticed that if you're absolutely sure of yourself and what you are into and make no apologies for it, people respect you more.


Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 4/16/2011 12:39:58 AM

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

Smart words and sound advice, World.

kraygen
kraygen
9 years ago

Sadly all the other men in my family and most of my married friends do not own video games because their wives refuse to let them. How sad is that. They come over to my house and will play just about anything because they are not allowed to at home.

To be fair though I have known some guys who would be addicted to gaming if it was allowed in their homes. They end up putting a video game before their family, which is obviously wrong.

However most married women I know seem to expect their husband to do something more productive than play games. I know their are women out there like my wife who think it's ok to play video games. I personally think it just comes down to being responsible. Don't put your games before your ladies and ladies don't stereotype your game loving man.

Qubex
Qubex
9 years ago

Here here World… your words are wise and true!

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

thj_1980
thj_1980
9 years ago

what a joke. Though only one of these really only applies to a large majority it's still stupid too assume all this bull here.

Alienange
Alienange
9 years ago

Let's see… The best sci-fi to ever grace television was 2nd gen Battlestar Galactica. If you've dismissed it because of the name or because it's sci-fi, you're missing out, big time.

Comic books? Yeah, back as a young adult for a couple years. Still have them around here somewhere…

Electronic Gadgets? Nah. I've got a train set sitting here and a netbook on my gaming couch, but that's it.

Poor health is an interesting one. I might be. I know I sneeze sometimes.

And lastly, yes, I only play video games.

DirtySkillzHD
DirtySkillzHD
9 years ago

I love me some gadgets thats pretty much the only thing on that list that pertains to me

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
9 years ago

As a Biker & a gamer, I don't give a F'ing rats a$$ what anyone thinks of me.

Now as for gadgets, I just found a 7-port tentacle Hi-speed USB hub for $5 & I'm as giddy as a schoolgirl!!!!!

*giggle*

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

lol, you shouldn't mention schoolgirls and tentacles here.

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
9 years ago

World,
I know, right?

There's a strange Japanese culture with a lot of their anime that I've seen, which involves lots of young schoolgirls & roaming tentacles.

JMO_INDY
JMO_INDY
9 years ago

I'm a gadget freak, as far as specs, how they work, and what they can do, I know about it. As for the poor health part, well TBH I've seen footbal players in very poor shape and they're in a very active sport. I did baseball for 9 years as a kid and kinda gave it up as I moved 5 times since those times and it makes it hard to be on a school sports team when you don't really know anyone. I then played football for a year and it just wasn't my thing and went to being an avid hiker on my 400 acre woods (best shape I've ever been in) and still manage to get in a healthy amount of gaming in as well as balancing school and piano. I think I've managed a way to fit all my passions in to a healthy schedule that doesn't spread me too thin.

deadmanwithin
deadmanwithin
9 years ago

Interestingly enough,I fit the first three of the things you mentioned.They're just interesting to me,and that's about the only reason I need.
I think you meant "Poor physical shape" rather than overall "poor health".Even the best athletes can catch a cold or get infected with something.
Since I love the outdoors(hiking&climbing are my things) and I visit a dojo 4 times a week,I don't fit that one.
Video games don't define my life.The very idea is ridiculous for people like me.Though I do enjoy the expressions of people when they find out that I play video games for fun . "You play VIDEO GAMES ? You don't look like it" … "Well you didn't look like an idiot,but then you had to start talking"
The concept of stereotypes is for close-minded people,and when you don't meet their expectations they tend to get baffled/annoyed.
It's not like we care,though.

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

"Well you didn't look like an idiot,but then you had to start talking"

That's how you know that light travels faster than sound. 😛


Last edited by Lawless SXE on 4/16/2011 3:21:15 AM

just2skillf00l
just2skillf00l
9 years ago

I guess I fall into the sci-fi territory sort of. I never was an avid fan of Star Trek. Star Wars was never really my thing either. But I love Fringe, V (the newer series), and a lot of other sci-fi stuff…enough to know there's no point in mentioning more.

However, I don't fall into any of the other categories though. If I did then well…I did. There's always some self-righteous critical mastermind out there trying to label other people. From my experience I've learned that those people are the most insecure ones. Just do what you do. No one person is superior to you no matter how they try and spin it. We're all just people. Irrational sometimes, maybe even foolish, but looking for a better tomorrow.

p.s- (Did I just say looking for a better tomorrow?) I know that somewhere in the world a bumper sticker just died a little more, prematurely peeled a little bit faster. Gomenasai!

___________
___________
9 years ago

amazed to see how far stereotypes have not come.
you would think over time they would die, and people would stop believing them.
but you would think wrong!
if i have had a penny for every time i heard someone say your too old to play video games id be a miltibillionare by now!
my uncles 84 and he still plays games from time to time!

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

Just curious, how old are you?