Go On, Give It A Go!

Why doesn't he want to spend time with me? Whyyyy??

From the way these girls were carrying on you would have thought that a single woman had gone around, slept with all their boyfriends and cooked them ‘brinner’ afterwards. Whoever this tramp was, she was tearing relationships apart left right and centre – and the passive aggressive Facebook statuses were pouring out of the devastation like the blood from a head wound. Who was this temptress that had decimated all these relationships in the course of a few hours? In one fell swoop she had ended the true-love stories of so many on my feed, and the relationship statuses were changed to prove it [Nomygod!]. Her name? Well, she was none other than our very own Modern Warfare 3.

It’s been a good couple of months for gamers, release wise at least. Battlefield 3, Modern Warfare 3, Skyrim, Saints Row the Third; we’ve been lucky. But, judging by the angry and bitter updates that are flung out by the girls on my ‘friends’ list, the past few months have been hell for them. To list them all would be pointless, so I have provided you with a few select samples taken from my very own feed [grammar and spelling cleaned up for your own convenience].

“Seriously? What the fuck does he see in those stupid video games? They’re stupid and pointless”.
“wtf? I don’t get why he plays cod so much. Video games are so stupid – they’re for kids.”
“I can’t believe my boyfriend is ignoring me for a stupid video game?!”
“My boyfriend is so pathetic – all he does is play cod all day. He hasn’t spoken to me for ages. Well he’s not my boyfriend anymore! I don’t date losers!”
And, of course, the inevitable “COD sucks!”

Your feminine looks and chiselled cheek bones can't save you now, not from my bullets... oh shit yeah, the whole stake through the heart thing... dammit.

My initial reaction was one of rage. These girls were selfish pricks who were angry about their boyfriends enjoying a little time to themselves. Most of them (I can guarantee you) have never held a controller in their life, other than to remove it from their partners’ hands. The difference between an RTS and FPS would escape them entirely (I’m sure if I asked them the difference their reaction would be to flick their hair, remove the eyelash curlers from their view and whine “who gives a fuck? I’m far more important”). I challenged all of them, asking if they themselves had given the game a go, explaining that they might find more enjoyment in it than they would care to admit; it’s so much easier to judge something we don’t understand than to accept it. Of course they all ignored me and continued to rant about how their boyfriends were neglectful assholes and that they, quite frankly, deserved much better.

A lot of geeky in-jokes, apparently, but I never saw any

I then asked them “How many times has your boyfriend been dragged out shopping for clothes? How many times have you implored him to sit with you to watch Twilight, or did you make him pay for you both to sit through both Sex and the City films? How much stuff does he do without question in the name of love?” By then end I was begging them to at least try gaming before they knocked it, explaining that their openly-hating-their-partners pastime wasn’t attractive and that they wouldn’t stand for it if their boyfriends publicly berated their hobbies, so why should they? How these guys could put up with such self-important and jealous partners, I don’t know.

But then I got to thinking – perhaps they’re not all too wrong. I’ve known many people who have taken their gaming to an obsessive level and have let it get in the way of a healthy social life. Let’s be honest, we’re all guilty of it to an extent. I myself have often sat down to play an hour, and looked at the clock in disbelief three hours later. So how does this affect those around us? It must be difficult for someone who isn’t of a gaming nature to understand the addictive quality of a particular release. So why then, don’t those who suffer with a jealous girlfriend try to get her involved? Games have split screen co-op for a reason. For me, there isn’t a better night in than curling up under a quilt with my boyfriend, some good snacks, and a co-op game.

How will your girlfriend understand your enjoyment if you exclude her from it? I’m not saying play every game with her, but if you help her understand what’s going on she might show a genuine interest. Get her involved, make her feel loved and share your enjoyment. And if she still doesn’t understand it? Then maybe pause the game every once in a while. Kiss her on the cheek, make her a cup of tea, send her a soppy text or tell her how important she is. She’s feeling neglected for a reason. And if your partner still can’t understand how important your hobby is? Stand up for yourself. For every hour of America’s Next Top Model [or your partner's equivalent] demand an hour of game time. It’s only fair.

Try getting your partner involved in gaming... you never know where it may lead




Last five articles by Jo

  

6 Comments

  1. Knikitta says:

    Your a braver woman than me… to actually challenge these ‘game-devoid’ creatures that inhabit your Facebook is like being a stunt double on Joe Danger!

    Your next mission, should you choose to accept it, is to get them and their partners to actually read this so they can both gather some understanding into the Gaming relationship that so many couples seem to be in these days and even if you ‘save’ just one couple then it was all worth it.

    Not everyone is lucky enough to be like us, a Gaming couple. :D

    Job well done Jo.

  2. Leon says:

    While my girlfriend is by no means selfish like these girls, we couldn’t be more different when it comes to gaming! I must admit, there are times when gaming has left her feeling a little neglected – although we’ve gotten into a comfortable routine where we both enjoy our own passtimes at the same time. (Protip: two TVs!)

    It’s a shame, though. No matter how often I try, I cannot get her into the vast majority of games, on co-op or otherwise. She’ll play the odd game here and there – Viva Pinata, A Kingdom for Keflings, Plants vs Zombies. But Dynasty Warriors, Street Fighter, Moon Diver? Not a chance haha.

    While I don’t play CoD or Battlefield, I think a lot of the problem is due to being a novice with controllers and general gaming. Especially considering she is quite competitive, it only takes a quick session to get an “I give up, I can’t do this so it’s no fun” response. But I think it’s easy to forget how natural these things come to people like us who have been using controllers on a daily basis for 15-20 years. And it’s not easy for people to master these things unless they really have a distinct drive to do so – which, if they had, they would probably already be into gaming.

    I’ve tried the whole “Play Wii together, introduce friendly Xbox games and work up to the harder stuff” but to no avail – Plants vs Zombies is about as far as I think I’ll get. But at least she doesn’t complain about my hobby on Facebook ;)

  3. Chris says:

    Mixed kettle of fish with me and Jules. She certainly knows how important it is to me. Essentially she’s happy with me going off and playing games if I want to, aslong as we schedule in an hour or two to watch a film or go out and do something. It’s just a case of making time for each other. When you move in with each other it’s even more important.

    It sound’s amazing having a girlfriend who loves video games but the reality is very different. That thing that you loved, that made you unique is now equally loved by someone else and no-longer feels special to you. Can be a good thing. Can suck to.

    Jules plays a few games but mainly keeps it to the casual stuff.

  4. Edward says:

    I have to admit, I get really annoyed with anyone being outwardly dismissive of videogames, let alone if they’re complaining about their boyfriends or about COD in general, so I know exactly where you’re coming from Jo!

    From my limited experience, having a significant other who was also a gamer was quite fun for the time, but as Chris and Leon have said, it comes down to the fact you have different tastes, but it also comes down to how you capitalise on those different tastes. You don’t realise how few multiplayer games you own until you’re having to play N64 to get a multiplayer fix, and I imagine it would have made Bioshock completely different when playing it again with someone too scared to finish it.

    Excellent work Jo, you owe us a roast.
    I mean, we owe each other a delicious dinner.
    Of roast.
    …Roast, Jo. :)

  5. Leon says:

    That said, I’ve heard gaming couples can have issues fighting over who gets to play! So that’s something I don’t have to worry about ;)

  6. Rich says:

    It’s good to have a partner who games. Local co-op for achievements for the win.

    Good piece Mojojojo!

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