I Am A Gamer But ...
I am not the Junk Food Eating Machine.
I am not the 8 year old Headset yelling Tea - bagger
I do not live a life underneath the floors of my parent's basement.
I am not the anti-social fiend pinned up by every international news outlet.
I am not the stereotype.
I am proud how this medium has enriched my life. There is no one that can tell me that "Games have no value" or "it's all just mindless violence". We have a treasure trove of games to prove otherwise. But they do not listen. They only see the stereotype.
I am not loud enough. Not on my own. But there are other's out there. Including you, who feel as I do. That we are always shifted aside. That we are silenced in the face of public media.
There is a relatively old video by internet standards Below
We have a history. A rich history. I want it shown to the world. I want people to know what games actually are. Not what they think it is.
I want the stereotype to disappear.
This is not a call to be the loud and proud, I do not want to take the term back and keep it for ourselves. We found ourselves here because of the one of the things gamers have in common. We are Inclusive, we accept others when they are called out by others.
What I wish we could do
I wished while I am still relatively young, that I could produce a documentary series on who we are.
A documentary by us to Others.
All our aspects, the good and the bad. We discuss Addiction and Violence. We talk about our Scrutiny by others, our mistreatment. But also our mistakes, and how we have learned. But this is not just a series where we produce our defence. I also would want to show what Gaming has become and what it can be. The Rise of E-Sports, the Production of Machinima. The tools of Education, the moments that Enriched our lives. The Heroes that this industry has spawned.
I was not meant not to create such an idea. If I was I would of done it already. I do not have the necessary knowledge on production. I do not have the experience. I would not have the funds to do this or the bravery to do it.
But I hope someone does, and I will be the first to stand behind you. Along with a few million others.
Because all I have is what everyone has, the passion to make a difference.
I'll leave you with something from Extra Credits writer James Portnow:
"This will take real courage from within our industry. It will take the bravery to face critique, and the fortitude to whether outcry. It will ask that we expose ourselves to short-term financial risk, and that don’t back down from early losses, firm in the knowledge that we are doing right. We will have to be steadfast under the scrutiny of the world, and resolute when we are asked to justify ourselves in the Court of Public Opinion. It will ask that, for the moment, we give up ease.
But if we can do this, we can do good - real good - with our medium. If we do this, we can expand our industry and bring whole new genres into the purview of games. If we do this, we can turn a greater profit while providing more meaningful experiences and reach audiences hitherto unthinkable. If we do this, we can perhaps elevate some small portion of our labour to an art. But if we do this, we will no longer be able to pretend as if what we do doesn't matter. If we do this, we can never go back to the way it was before."
After some days thinking about it.Whether it will be feasible with school and after reading a few more articles and looking at a few other things. I think I've been convinced that I should try and do this come hell or high water.
But I can't do it alone, and I don't quite have a plan on how it will be structured, how it will be filmed/distributed.
I know the theme I want to be pushing is not the games but the people behind it. Quoting Day's Manifesto:
" We are adventurers and doctors, engineers and entrepreneurs, journalists and lawyers, scientists and students. We are smart, ambitious, and competitive. We are gamers."
Here are the themes I want to present.
I really wan't to show who we are, in contrast to public media. So to get that perspective I want to follow the lives of 2 or 3 people covering our different demographics, also prefer if they are on different continents (but still speak English obviously) so I'd like:
- A Student (Taken, It will be me :P)
Obviously I won't just hope you believe me, I'll give you some reasons why I think I'd fit this sort of well, in the least upstart manner possible.
I am 18 living in Australia (Demographic Check), I started gaming at the turn of the century so in terms of video games that's incredible recent. I had a depression a few years ago where video games we're my escape but also my saviour.
And currently I'm studying at the Academy of Interactive Entertainment (AIE) in Canberra, doing a 3 year degree in Games Programming.
Also growing up in Australia means I saw the stories when the gaming community here was attempting to get games the R18+ restriction on games, for those who don't know, before this year the highest rating for games was MA15+ (Mature Audience over the age of 15 years of age). that means games were either placed under the MA15+ label (Including the Grand Theft Auto, Call of Duty franchise, which are rated at 17+ and 18+ overseas) or they were refused classification and banned in Australia (e.g. Manhunt and the Postal series were refused classification, or Games like Left 4 Dead 2 and Fallout 3 had to be resubmitted). This makes me one of the youngest people to be able to purchase or hire R18+ video games.
- A Parent (Mother or Father)
A view of growing up with video games all your life and sharing that love with your children. Get that sense of the once great Arcade era eventually busting to the console market. I'd actually like to get someone from the U.S for a couple of reasons. The main one and the unfortunate truth being, the controversy surrounding games during the times of Colombine, Virginia Tech and most recently Newton. Its a terrible terrible thing, and especially the perspective of someone who is a parent of a child.
- Open to Suggestions
I've also thought about Pro gamers, content creators who use video game, for example Rooster Teeth Productions for their Machinima Series, The Penny Arcade Comics, or people like Day! and what he does on the Day Daily, someone who's life has been greatly greatly impacted by gaming.
So the ordering is something like this, obviously like I said, anything I say may be complete different, these are only my ideas and what I imagined.
divided into three sections
- The Stereotype
Here we talk about gamers in the face of media. The main three in my mind are violence and addiction and how its seen as unacceptable in your mainstream media.
some of the events I want to cover this is R18+ in Australia (violence), the Story of Atomic Games and Six Days in Fallujah and I'm not sure about the addiction one yet.
- The People
Here is where we learn about real gamers, follow them in their lives and hear their stories of what's gaming done for them.
That's when we talk to the people above and follow. We see what actual gamers are, People who are exactly like them.
- The CommunityThis is where we go into what makes gaming great, The people who play them. This is the section for E-Sports, Machinima. I know it's a big if, but if anyone plans on going to the Child's Play Charity dinner auction, I ask because In my mind its a perfect ending to what gaming is. On that night we are not just an industry but are united to do some good. Raising money so ill children in hospitals all over the world have it just a little bit easier around Christmas. Here we are not evil creators that they believe we are, we are not even a giant money making machine some others see the industry as. We are the bringers of joy. We are reminded of why we play, The joy and wonder, the endless possibilities and friendships its brought us. Its reminds me of why I want to be a part of this industry, that it would be perhaps and underpaying and overworking job, but reap the benefits of seeing my creation bring that joy to others. To do a job that returns the memories and experiences gaming brought me.
What's going decide on whether this is going to flop within the month or survive until completion, is a dedicated team who will do this (since we will be based all around the world). On that I don't even know what I need. Like I said, I've kind of thrown myself into a role that I got to learn on the fly, a role that if it gets going, I can't quit, not because I can't but because I've never left many things unfinished.
I'm going to post this on every community I'm apart of but, man you guys are something when it comes to self belief and confidence.
So here it starts, lets see where we end.
- Krisna "Kastle" Siv