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One Major Reason Gaming Will Not Mature(And How To Fix It)

By Steve ‘jsslifelike’ Conger

By the article’s title alone, you’re no doubt thinking about parity with the film industry, rating systems(and the complete parental disregard toward them) or even every man’s mortal enemy. Any of these could possibly be dead-on at other points in the calendar year, but the most detrimental force during the days and weeks leading up to the industry’s most high-profile annual trade show comes from within it’s ethos.

Leading up to the Christmas of 1983, I remember obsessing over whether or not Santa had received my letter concerning my utter need for a Star Wars Ewok Village Playset. My seven-year-old self daydreamed about how incredible it would be to re-enact the crew becoming ensnared in the crude net trap or the working elevator lifting little furry beings into their tree-bound homes. I also began to wonder what gifts my parents had in store for me, so I began to snoop while mother was out and father tended to the yard work. After extensive detective work, I came across a well-hidden the exact object of my well-focused affection and since then, all that comes to mind in association with that time now was the agonizing over the surpise being spoiled- and it was all my fault.

In case you’re not following thus far(or a little thick, for that matter), our gaming Christmas morning is the Electronic Entertainment Expo. As I age, it would seem, more and more cliches apply to me and, “good things come to those who wait” is no different. Enthusiast and mainstream gaming press has become a cesspool for cheap and tawdry clicks, run mostly by the “anything for a page view” crowd and those with the patience of a ravenous wolf. LinkedIn profiles, IMDB sheets, patent office filings… when is it enough? If you’re not breaking stories, you’re nothing. Some may call it “hustle”, but immaturity seems a better fit.

Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo(plus many others) employ thousands of people who work tremendously hard in preparation for the most-watched set of keynote-style press comferences gaming has to offer. Why not allow thses folks their moment in the spotlight? Scouring the backs of closets or under beds completely deflated the “punch” that would have effectively been delivered in Sony’s 2011 E3 presser. It’s a sad commentary that companies now drip-feed meaningless information leading up to the show in an attempt to create a diversion.

Don’t you want to be “wowed”? Trust me- your “Ewok Village” will mean much more to you if it’s received when it’s meant to be. That’s the definition of “maturation”. If this hurdle can be overcome, then there’s only one left- time itself.

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