Gamers...We Aren't All Like This
There's nothing I hate more than being grouped into the typical stereotypes for gamers. The world has a skewed view of us due to what's presented mainstream. They see us tea-bagging at an awards show. They see Cartman and gang overweight, covered with pimples, and eating Hot Pockets. We're a bunch of bros that crave games with violence and curse words. Gamers are a diverse bunch. So with that, here are some gaming stereotypes I can't stand.
What is the huge fascination with 8-bit? 'OMG look at me, I'm so trendy because I like stuff that looks like it's from the retro days of video games.' It's so typical when a gaming website has 8-bit font or people 8-bit portrait themselves. 'Oh look, I have a lightning bolt, but it's not a normal lightning bolt because it's 8-bit. It's special.'
These 8-bit, retro fanatics think so highly of themselves, too—like they're better than other gamers because they have a Mega Man tattoo or sticker.
I am not an 8-bit fanatic. Nor am I a graphics whore. I can enjoy a game that doesn't boast photo-realism, a game that looks paint brushed, a game that looks like it was on the NES, and a game that has me question whether I'm watching real people or a video game. So don't assume all of us gamers want to 8-bit everything in our lives...because we don't.
We aren't tea-bagging bros!
When I was watching the VGA 2011 and saw that they were tea-bagging, my heart sank. I'm sure many gamers out there will agree with me when I saw that the thing we hate most is tea-bagging. It portrays us as immature. I'm not a bro, and that's such a bro thing to do. 'Hehe I'm on Chuck and I wear a plaid suit and since we're gamers we're gonna teabag ya if ya talk too long, because we can't be classy—we're gamers!' Spike TV: you deserve to have the most funky-smelling pair of hairy, fermunda cheese balls slid across your face...slowly.
Some other bro actions are throwing insults around in a Call of Duty vs Battlefield 3 debate (you're not better than someone because you play BF3 or vice versa); providing commentary on a Madden game or replay in a very annoying fashion; pretending you are Brazilian to get on someone's nerves in a match of League of Legends (huehue); and saying “cool story bro” or “u mad bro?” to someone.
We aren't parent's basement dwellers.
Along with this, people think we are all 400 pounds, eat and drink nothing but Cheetos and Mountain Dew, are covered with pimples, and never go outside. This could not be further from the truth. In fact, studies will show that most gamers look like this:
Yes, I play video games. Yes, my friends and I sometimes have a LAN party where Mountain Dew might be present, but so is beer, Pollo Tropical, chips and salsa, or an amazing homemade cookie assortment that my friend Adam bakes. We also play football or ultimate frisbee when we have the chance, we go out for drinks or dinner, and we do things that have nothing to do with video games. Oh, and did I mention that none of us live with our parents?
We don't all crave gore and violence.
Yea, some of the games we enjoy have very strong language, over-the-top violence and blood, strong sexual themes, and heavy-chested female characters in nothing but a strip of cloth to contain their bust. However, for every Shadows of the Damned or Catherine, there's an Animal Crossing or Kinect Disneyland Adventures. For every Gears of War or God of War, there's a Little Big Planet and Kirby. Not all of the amazing games we enjoy need to involve a chainsaw or panty shots.
We aren't all obsessed with Anime.
I don't understand a lot of Anime. I think I've seen one episode of Bleach and half an episode of Full Metal Alchemist. I could care less about Pokemon and Naruto. And can someone please explain the existence of Fooly Cooly?! That show makes no sense!
What is going on?!!!
Since this usually goes hand-in-hand with Anime, we don't all need to have our female characters with outta-whack bodily proportions and very little clothing. Jiggle physics and nude patches aren't a must-have for every gamer. I think that's why it's refreshing to see the new Lara Croft look so different. She's not wearing tiny clothing, and she doesn't look like she needs a breast reduction every time she does a flip.
So remember, the stereotype gamer is not close to accurate. Yea, there's a lot of d-bags out there that will piss you off—those are called trolls, not gamers. These stereotypes about gamers need to go away. It's like saying all graphic designers love the Comic Sans and Papyrus fonts; all athletes take steroids (you broke my heart Ryan Braun); and all non-gamers are Abercrombie-wearing, totes-def amazeballs-talking, OMG let's go dance to Ke$ha and roofie the girl dancing to Ke$ha, d-bags that love MTV.
You can follow me at @Lance_GZ