The genre effect….

An observation has occurred to me of late while scrolling through the library of games on my Xbox One, My list of genres appears to have dwindled…

As a kid I would love playing just about anything and everything (bar sports games, go kick a ball outside or something…) From platformers to point and clicks, Racing to fighting it was all fair game as long as it had some enjoyability.

As I’ve aged though my tastes appear to have changed, to the point now where I tend to stick to three or four genres, I’d like to say this is down to the industry churning out the same few triple A games each year but it’s not, my focus has shifted I get less excited by certain projects etc.

This isn’t to say I don’t enjoy all those games but predominantly my library consists of shooters, racers and puzzle games.

I’ve pondered the reasoning behind this and it would seem that subconsciously I’m playing these games mostly due to the fact that they offer the most play time, I never made this decision. It has been made for me. It appears to be a part of the aging process and being more aware of a few things….

The time I have to play…

The money I have to spend…

The amount of game I can get for that money…

These three things seem to combine deep in my mind to make choices for me when ordering games.

I’ll still play other genres and actually some of my best experiences of the last 12 months have been from games like Inside for example. However I tend to now wait for these games to drop in price or pop up in deals before purchasing.

It’s an unusual analysis and one I hope doesn’t become worse the older I get…..


The E3 comparison…

E3, That time of year that every gamer sits with baited breath waiting for the onslaught of games and technology that will be heading their way in the next year or two.

As a child E3 was an extra special time of year. Back then the internet hadn’t yet arrived and magazine articles were the primary source of news about the show. I would spend the weeks waiting for the latest issues of Edge and Games Master just so I could flick straight to the E3 articles and begin my lists.

One for games I would be feverishly saving for release day, One for games I would be pestering my mother to get me for Christmas and one last one for those games that I would be running to the local Blockbuster to rent.

Back then the show was more about the industry and those working in it than showing off to the public but as I’ve grown older and the internet has grown so has the show, Consoles and games unveiled with the help of celebrities and massive stage shows to dazzle and amaze.

During the early days of the internet E3 began this change and slowly it has morphed into the premier showcase of the three big hitters, Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo.

Within the confines of my adulthood I still look forward to E3 each year and with the advent of live streams and blogs I can see it all as it’s happening, Even while I’m at work.

The lists have changed however….

Now the lists consist of games I’d like to pre-order, Games I might get from the wife for Christmas and games that I might get down the line once they are cheaper.

It’s an unusual juxtaposition that goes against most of what adulthood is.

As an adult you gain much more freedom than that of a child, you have the resources and time to build your own collections and make your own decisions on when and what to play but fundamentally you end up buying less simply because it’s your own money that you are spending. So despite having more of just about everything as an adult you actually end up with less games and vice versa as a child.

It’s a position that thus far I’ve only seen in games, Everything else I purchase gives me more than it did as a child.

But back to the show…

I was able to watch or catch up on all the major conferences from this year’s show and I must say it was a big year for the games, Microsoft bounded right out of the gate with the One X (A console that will sit proudly under my 4k TV come November) and then no less than 42 games, It was like a knee jerk reaction to criticism of recent years that the Xbox is lacking in games and one I gladly watched with glee.

Sony focused solely on the games with barely any breaks to talk, it was an action packed show that had a great view of the games most of us wanted to see in action. The committment to VR on consoles was a big deal and one that I believe will only increase with time.

Even Nintendo had a great showing. In recent years they have struggled to understand what their gamers want but this year they delivered two of those things that we have ALL been waiting for. Metroid Prime 4 and a cannon entry of the Pokémon series on console.

For me it has been a show that had all the games you could want with less of the talk.

That for me is exactly what I’m after…

The Introduction….

As I sit here trying to figure out a decent introduction into what will hopefully become a fully fledged chronicle of my (not so) blossoming gaming career I hit the realisation that you the reader have probably just stumbled here by accident.

Be it a miss type, a badly placed hit on a stupid link or just plain curiosity. I’ve come to terms with this, I’m not famous, people aren’t searching the globe for me to witness my (not so) amazing skills with a controller, no. I’m just your average middle aged gamer with a light passion for writing and a big passion for games.

Your probably now asking yourself what this is all about exactly? Well truth be told it’s actually all to do with an odd experience I’ve been dealing with lately.

You see as a child my passion for gaming was as big if not bigger than anybody I knew, I’d digest the latest gaming news on a daily basis, I’d build up piles upon piles of gaming magazines (Yeah magazines about games, Google it.) And my walls would be constantly updated with posters of the latest characters and games coming my way and I’d play feverishly every single day.

As I’ve become older the magazines have gone and the posters replaced with nice pictures of family life and pets but the passion hasn’t died, not one single ounce. 


My body and my mind are aging, I’m beginning to notice these changes actually being reflected in my gaming habits and my ability to play. It’s a phenomenon that has little to no recognition on the internet.

So, in the interests of science (and for my own slowly aging mind) I’ve decided to document my ongoing experiences as I age alongside this beloved industry of mine to show how aging has affected the skills, tastes and ability to accept new ideas and concepts.

Alongside​ these hopefully regular posts I intend to pepper articles about gaming news and maybe the odd review from the perspective of an aging gamer.

I hope this journey becomes insightful for those that read this and maybe even for myself…

Tom – The middle aged gamer.