Learn from my mistakes. I am 28 years old and I have played games all my life. I have learned some lessons about games and thought it might be beneficial to pass those on to you whippersnappers, to prevent you from making some of the mistakes I made.
1. Don’t buy a game you aren’t going to play right away. If you are buying it the day it comes out with the intention of playing it down the road, don’t. If the drive to play it isn’t there now because you have something else to play, then what makes you think it will suddenly appear later on? Answer: it won’t. And you will end up with a giant backlog of games that most likely you will never play because something new is always coming out. If you wait a week or two, I promise that insatiable need you feel to possess that game will dissipate, leaving a profound and new understanding about yourself. Also, it leaves $60 bucks or so in your wallet. Win/win?
2. Don’t be blindly loyal to a console. I was a Nintendo kid, like millions of others. But when Final Fantasy left Nintendo for Sony, I bought a Playstation and I have been with Sony ever since. Now, I still buy whatever Nintendo console is out there, but later, for a cheaper price and I use it as a second system and nothing more. If the 360 is your thing, but the games on the Wii or PS3 look good, don’t punish yourself out of some misguided loyalty to Microsoft. Trust me: they, nor Sony or Nintendo, give a crap. Play the games you want. Whatever system it may be for.
3. Games matter. Consoles don’t. Graphics? Sound? Online? These things matter not. If you want to know what console is right for you, then look at the games. Games determine what wins in the console wars, nothing else. Not fervent message board chatter, not how many people play online and not who has the better E3. It’s the games, stupid.
4. Reviews do matter. But they also don’t. See, don’t worry about the score a game gets. Read the review, in fact, read several reviews of a game you are looking at buying. You know what type of game you like, right? Scan the reviews to decipher if it is the kind of game you will like. If so, then the score doesn’t matter quite as much to you. If you love hack & slash RPGs and the reviewer gives one a 5, but for you it sounds like a 10, then get it! On the other hand, reviews don’t matter. No one really cares what game gets a 10. No one will remember that. So if a game you love gets a low score, who cares? Are you so insecure that someone else’s opinion might alter yours?
5. It’s a game. Enjoy it. We all forgot this sometimes, but don’t let the extraneous crap let you forget the fact that you are playing this game for fun. For enjoyment. To escape from the horrors of the real world for a bit. Don’t become obsessed with tiny details that ruin the fun for you. If you like single-player games and despise online games, that’s fine. There is nothing wrong with that. If you only like playing in groups, then do so. Don’t let someone else try to tell you what you should like or dislike. Have fun.
6. Don’t cosplay. Seriously. Never do this. Unless you are a really hot girl, don’t ever do this on any day that is not Halloween and even then, it might be pushing it.